CARES: Interpersonal Climate Measure

Climate of Accountability, Respect, and Ethics Survey


The Climate of Accountability, Respect, and Ethics Survey (CARES) is a 22-item instrument that allows institutional leaders to gauge the interpersonal work climate at three levels of granularity (Institutional, College/Area, and Unit/Department).

Survey Domains

The CARES includes three principal domains: Interpersonal Accountability (IAC), which measures the degree to which people hold themselves accountable when interacting and collaborating with others, Civility Climate (CC), which measures the degree to which civility is modeled and encouraged by leaders and members, and Conflict Resolution (CR), which measures the degree to which leaders help resolve disputes in the work place.

Survey Features

The CARES survey includes 22 question items (α=0.95), all asked on a Likert scale ranging from 1 to 5, with the following response categories: Not at All, Somewhat, Moderately, Very, and Completely. A “No basis for judging” option is also provided. These questions yield four means-scored summary dimensions, one tapping Institutional Practices influencing climate, and three tapping various aspects of the work-unit climate.

Although existing work has been done to develop assessments of research integrity climate (via the SOURCE, the Survey of Organizational Research Climate), up to now, no assessment tool has existed to measure interpersonal climate, particularly as it exists within academic research-focused environments. Over the past several years, as part of a project funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation (Sloan Grant #2019-12294), our team has rigorously developed such a tool—the CARES.