The American Academy of Business Journal
Vol. 10 * Num.. 2 * March 2007
The Library of Congress, Washington, DC * ISSN: 1540 – 7780
Online Computer Library Center * OCLC: 805078765
National Library of Australia * NLA: 42709473
Peer-Reviewed Scholarly Journal
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Dr. Canri Chan, Monterey Institute of International Studies, CA
This paper examines profit shifting focusing on the influence of tax effects on the transfer pricing decision. The experimental results found that decision makers considered the profit effects of tax rates. Nevertheless, while influenced by tax rates, decision makers did not optimize overall corporate profitability. The findings suggest that managers trying to induce transfer pricing decisions that optimize profits may need to consider incentive schemes that will induce profit optimizing decision behavior when considering the selection of transfer prices. One major issue of interest in studies of transfer price choice has been whether or not multinational corporations (MNCs) manage earnings across subsidiaries in disparate tax jurisdictions by manipulating transfer prices and thereby shift profits among divisions/subsidiaries. Despite the seemingly obvious benefits of “tax-shifting” via transfer pricing, prior research along this vein has yielded inconclusive results and understanding why has proved elusive. Several transfer pricing studies using extant databases have found inconsistent results as to whether multinational companies minimize world-wide tax liabilities (e.g. Chan and Chow 1997; Crain and Stitts 1994; Harris 1993; Klassen, et. al., 1993; Shackelford 1993, etc.). Some empirical studies provided evidence that gross profit margins were significantly lower for foreign corporations in low tax jurisdictions, just the opposite of expectations, whether or not the foreign corporations operated through U.S. subsidiaries of the U.S. corporation (Crain and Stitts 1994). Other studies found similar results in developing countries. For instance, Chan and Chow’s (1997) results revealed that MNCs shifted income out of China although their home countries’ income tax rates were much higher than their income tax rates in China. This study examines and explores how environmental factor, particularly tax rates, affects corporate profitability which in turn affects decision making regarding international transfer price choice. An experimental accounting setting was utilized in order to provide a better understanding of the cause and effect relationship.
Purchasing Power Parity, Inflation and Central Bank Independence: A Panel Cointegration Test of Emerging Economies
Dr. Hermann Sintim-Aboagye, Montclair State University, NJ
Dr. Chandana Chakroborty, Montclair State University, NJ
Using a panel cointegration framework, this paper investigates the possible effect of the inverse relationship between measures of central bank independence (CBI) and the level and stability of inflation on the long run relationship between prices and exchange rates. This study involves 26 emerging economies from 1970 to 2000. Results of cointegration tests involving the entire 26 original countries from 1970 to 2000 fail to reject the no cointegration null hypothesis. However on an individual country basis, 54% of the countries significantly confirm the long run relationship between prices and exchange rates. Notably most of these countries experienced high inflation over the period of study. Panel results for the sub-divided groups of both high and low CBI countries fail to reject no cointegration null hypothesis as well. However, on an individual country by country basis, 75% of countries in the low CBI group provide evidence in support of cointegration of prices and exchange rates. In contrast, cointegration is supported by only 36% of the high CBI countries. These outcomes provide support for the central hypothesis of this paper that measures of CBI probably influences the long run relationship between prices and exchange rates. A growing literature in economics and finance has drawn considerable attention to emerging economies. Bekaert and Campbell (2002) provide an overview of the existing research on emerging economies and opportunities for the future. An area with some paucity of exposure in the literature is the reform or transformation of monetary policy institutions and their impact on the behavior of financial and economic variables. This study contributes to closing this apparent gap in the literature on the dynamics of emerging economies by investigating the influence of the varying measures of central bank independence on Purchasing Parity Hypothesis (PPP hereafter). Specifically, we investigate if the degree of CBI affects the long run relationship between price levels and exchange rates. Existing theoretical and empirical work provide support for an inverse relationship between measures of central bank independence and the level and stability of inflation. In effect, higher levels of CBI are associated with low and stable inflation and vice versa. Published works by Alesina and Summers (1993), Cukierman, Webb, and Neyapti (1992), Neyapti (2003), Diana and Sidiropoulos (2004), Down (2004) and Siklos (2004), among others provide empirical evidence to support the afore-mentioned inverse relationship between CBI levels and inflation rate. Evidence on the relationship between relative prices and exchange rates however is mixed. While literature provides some support for the PPP hypothesis in the mid to long run time frames (Dornbusch, R., 1980; Enders and Dibooglu, 2001), support for the hypothesis in the short run is especially weak. As an extension of existing studies, this paper attempts to bring the two related phenomena of CBI and PPP hypothesis together. Specifically, this study examines how the interaction of the CBI relationship with the behavior of general prices affects the test results of the PPP hypothesis in the twenty six emerging economies from 1970 to 2000 (1) (countries are listed in table 1). Also, given the influence of CBI on price changes, this paper reexamines the view point in the literature that PPP hypothesis appears to hold stronger in high rather than low inflation economies (Melvin 1992, Mahdavi and Zhou, 1994 and Zhou, 1997). If the latter holds, we expect to see more evidence of PPP in low CBI countries with relatively high inflation than high CBI economies. The paper employs the relatively new and innovative panel cointegration procedure proposed by Pedroni (1995 & 1999). Unlike existing cointegration procedures for PPP tests, this approach allows for simultaneous testing of a group of countries without homogenizing the vector of cointegration estimates between prices and exchange rates across countries. In essence, it reaps the economies of group estimation while allowing, and capturing, the peculiarities of how each country’s variables interact with each other in transition (Pedroni, 2001).
Zero-Investment Trading Strategies and the Measurement with Recognition of Short-Selling Constraints: A Theoretical Perspective
Dr. Yan Xiong, California State University Sacramento, Sacramento, CA
Dr. Charles Davis, California State University Sacramento, Sacramento, CA
This paper reviews the zero-investment trading strategy literature and the measurement of returns using this strategy. A zero-investment trading strategy typically involves forming a long portfolio in one set of securities and a short portfolio in another, with the two identified with the same trading rule. The differences in the two portfolios’ abnormal returns represent an unbiased estimate of the economic profitability of the strategy under the assumption of perfect markets, and thus it serves as indication of market efficiency. The paper also addresses the failure of previous research to consider the constraints on short-selling imposed by the Federal Reserve Board under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 when measuring abnormal returns on zero-investment trading strategies. Lastly, the paper proposes modifications to the CAPM model to measure abnormal returns of zero-investment trading strategies by incorporating those short-selling constraints. A zero-investment trading strategy consists of taking a long position in one set of securities and a short position in another set of securities. The two sets of securities are identified using a trading rule which identifies one set of securities expected to have positive abnormal returns, and a second set expected to have negative abnormal returns. In an ideal setting, the proceeds from the short sale are used to purchase the securities held in the long position thus involving no net investment (“zero-investment”). Investors earn positive returns on this strategy through any combination of price decreases on the short positions and price increases or dividends on the long positions. Zero-investment trading strategies are commonly applied in academic research to test various market inefficiencies. The first purpose of this paper is to review some important studies in the finance and accounting areas that employ zero-investment trading strategies to test various market inefficiency issues. Moreover, this paper reviews the different measurements of abnormal returns of zero-investment trading strategies and also the controversial issues regarding the measurement of zero-investment trading strategies. Lastly, this paper focuses on one of the most important market frictions on the implementation of zero-investment trading strategies: the failure to recognize the constraints imposed by Federal Reserve Board on short selling. This paper proposes modifications to the CAPM model to measure abnormal returns of zero-investment trading strategies by incorporating a procedure developed by Alexander (2000) to recognize the short-selling constraints. The seminal work on zero-investment trading strategy is the De Bondt and Thaler (1985) study of market overreaction. Motivated by the Kahneman and Tversky (1982) study in experimental psychology that demonstrated how individuals tend to overreact to unexpected and dramatic events, De Bondt and Thaler (1985) form 16 sets of offsetting portfolios. Their portfolios are labeled as the winner portfolios and the loser portfolios, based on their market performance in a series of nonoverlapping three-year formation periods between January 1930 and December 1977. For each of the 16 nonoverlapping three-year periods, firms whose market performance are ranked in the top decile are assigned to the winner portfolio and the firms in the bottom decile are assigned to the loser portfolio. Winners are sold short on the expectation that the prices of those securities would decline in the future. The losers were purchased long. The difference between the raw returns of the winner and the loser portfolios were then computed for a three-year observation period. The authors found the average return attributable to their zero-investment strategy exceeded eight percent per year during the observation period.
Duality of Alliance Performance
Dr. Noushi Rahman, Lubin School of Business, Pace University, New York, NY
While alliance research has proliferated and branched out to several areas in the past decade, alliance performance remains a misunderstood and limitedly studied area. A review on alliance performance suggests that it comprises two elements: goal accomplishment and relational harmony. Both are necessary to ensure alliance performance. This paper reviews four theoretical streams in organization research that are relevant to alliance performance. Apparently, extant research has attended to alliance relationship management much more than it has attended to alliance goal accomplishment. This review highlights the need to extend existing theoretical streams in certain directions to further explain alliance performance. The literature on strategic alliances has flourished tremendously over the past decade. Strategic alliances are enduring, yet temporary, interfirm exchanges that member firms join to jointly accomplish their respective goals. In his review of the state of alliance literature, Gulati (1998) wrote about five avenues in which alliance literature has spread out: formation, governance, evolution, performance, and performance consequence. Of these five paths, research on alliance performance has received the least attention: “the performance of alliances remains one of the most interesting and also one of the most vexing questions” (Gulati, 1998: 309). Strategic management research is generally geared toward better performance of the firm. While conceptualizing and measuring firm performance is quite straightforward, the involvement of more than one firm and the permeable boundary of the alliance entity (with the exception of joint ventures) make conceptualizing and measuring alliance performance a messy and daunting task. Performance of an alliance is conceptualized as the extent to which member-specific goals are accomplished by the alliance. However, alliance members may find it difficult to work with each other for a lack or trust and threat of opportunism. Consequently, an alliance may fail to perform despite its ability to accomplish alliance-specific goals. Given the importance of maintaining a good working relationship between partner firms, many studies have focused on relational issues arising within alliances. Ironically, as it would become evident toward the end of the paper, the current state of strategic management research seldom focuses on goal-accomplishing or task-oriented aspect of alliance performance. The purpose of this article is to review how major theoretical streams in organization management research explain alliance performance and how these theories can be extended to further our understanding of alliance performance. The paper is divided into four parts. First, I delineate the nature of alliance performance. Second, I review major theoretical streams in organization management as they pertain to alliance performance. Third, I discuss the research implications of this paper. Finally, I describe how alliance managers can benefit from the theoretical conclusions drawn here. Alliances are unique in that they are the only form of economic organization that requires maintaining a relationship, in addition to concentrating on performance issues. Independent firms or firms engaged in spot transactions do not have to maintain relationships. This peculiarity of alliance has drawn tremendous research attention to this topic.
Valuation of a Bank Credit-Card Portfolio
Dr. Riaz Hussain, University of Scranton, Scranton, PA
This paper presents a simple model of the valuation of a portfolio of a credit cards held by a bank. Using discounted cash-flow analysis, the model takes into account various factors that may influence the value of the portfolio. These factors include the balance on the cards, fees and penalties, interest rate, and default rate of the cardholders. The model is then tested using actual data. First issued in 1950, Diners Club Card was the forerunner of the modern credit card. It carried the names of 28 New York restaurants where customers could charge food and drink, and get a bill for them at the end of the month. Credit cards have now become a permanent fixture on the national scene. At the end of 2004, Americans carried 657 million bank credit cards (4). Some of the largest banks have millions of cards in the hands of cardholders. With 88 million credit cards, JPMorgan Chase is the nation's largest issuer, with $134.7 billion of outstanding loans (15). Some of the other large portfolios belong to Citigroup ($115 billion) and MBNA ($83.5 billion) (9). In 2005, Bank of America acquired MBNA. There is fierce competition among card issuers. After saturating the adult population, the banks are offering credit cards to students and young adults. To gain customers, most of the card issuers have dropped the annual fees, and they are offering promotional rates as low as 0% for the first six months. The card issuers sent 1.285 billion direct mail solicitations in the first three months of 2004, an average of 5.3 solicitations per household per month. The response rate was 0.4% (10). There is also consolidation in credit-card industry. Many of the smaller regional banks are moving out of this business, selling their credit-card portfolios to national banks. An investment-banking firm, R. K. Hammer, negotiated 75 portfolio sales in 2004, with a total value of $30.57 billion (14). A paper by Trench, et al. (2) provides an excellent survey of actual management of a credit card operation. They designed the portfolio control and optimization system using Markov decision processes to select interest rate and credit lines for each card holder that maximize the net present value for the portfolio. They identify the main sources of income, interest, merchant fees, and various other fees. Offering a higher credit limit, coupled with lower interest rates, induces customers to charge more on their credit cards. However, a higher credit limit also increases the default risk and a lower interest rate reduces the income for the bank. Chakravorti and Shah (1) analyze the relationship between cardholders, merchants, banks, and card networks. They observe the lack of competition between the networks in allowing the members banks from issuing rival credit cards. The article describes the nature of merchant fees and their impact on the selling prices. R. K. Hammer (14), an investment-banking firm active in the negotiated sales of credit-card portfolios, lists several factors that they consider in the valuation of these portfolios. These include: (1) Credit Quality, as evidenced by original credit criteria, credit bureau risk scores, behavior scores, bankruptcy scores, and the trends of those score patterns; (2) Attrition Rate, the percentage of accounts and balances (and the profitability of those accounts), that close voluntarily (customer requested closure) vs. involuntary (bank revoked); (3) Income Yields, the APR, annual fee structure, nuisance fee structure, teaser rates outstanding, the percentage revolving; and (4) Open vs. Closed, the percentage of accounts and balances, that are open to buy vs. those that are closed (but who also may be paying as agreed and, therefore, not delinquent).
Effectiveness and Dynamics of Cross-Functional Teams: A Case Study of Northerntranspo Ltd.
Dr. Steven H. Appelbaum, Concordia University, Canada
Frederic Gonzalo, VIA Rail Canada
A conceptual model was developed from the literature, based on twelve criteria considered key to successful and effective team dynamics and tested within an organization for congruence. This article was a combination of a research design and case study. A model was developed and contrasted with an organization (NTL) where cross-functional teams were implemented early in 2002. In November 2004, quantitative and qualitative research was conducted to compare the conceptual model and twelve hypotheses with how members and leaders were perceiving dynamics to be performing within their respective cross-functional team environment. The organizational structure began a shift away from functional units towards a matrix-like structure. There were now issues affecting the effectiveness and evolution of these cross-functional teams, impeding its potential to spread to middle and low management within the company, and gain acceptance with a wider internal audience. This critical data is presented. The first part of this article will present some literature on barriers cross functional teams face and also address the specific situation existing at Northern Transpo Ltd.(NTL), a federal Corporation that provides regular passenger rail services across a country-wide network to test the congruence of the literature. As part of its most recent reorganization in late 2000, a matrix structure was implemented, with the novelty of four permanent cross-functional teams looking after the four key regions of the corporation. A recent history of the company will be provided, and how the concept of cross-functionality came about. The essence of this article is to contrast how the dynamics of cross-functional teams (CFT) at NTL compare with the generally accepted view of a successful CFT in the literature. A survey was conducted and will be presented including its methodology, and how the discrepancies between the model and the existing perceived dynamics within the CFT at NTL were interpreted. An analysis of the results will be provided that contrast the results with the literature and feedback from the quantitative and qualitative data that was collected as part of this research will be provided. How effective are CFT’s presently at NTL? What elements of their actual team dynamics are presently working well vs. those that may need improvement? Recommendations and conclusions will be based on the results of this research, but will obviously take into consideration the evolution of the past three months regarding this topic on which senior management decided to re-energize its efforts across the company. The literature is ripe with many positive factors as to the success and formulas of cross-functional team described as a group with a clear purpose representing a variety of functions or disciplines in the organization whose combined efforts are necessary for achieving the team’s purpose. (Parker, 2003) Trust and leadership are not the only important elements of an effective CFT. Other key components include empowerment, training, a clear goal, a right mix of players, and an adequate reward system. The following explores the key components individually. There are many factors attributing to CFT failures as well. Although a leader plays an important role in any team, leadership of a cross-functional team is both more important and more difficult, causing limitations in the team leadership (Parker, 2003). The team leader has to have the technical background to understand both the subject and the contributions made by people from a variety of backgrounds. Then there are the people management skills, to facilitate the interactions between team members.
A Macromarketing Perspective on the US Hospice Industry’s Shift to For-Profit Providers
Dr. John J. Newbold, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX
Reacting to changing social mores and an aging population in need of better alternatives for end-of-life care, the United States federal government permanently enacted the Medicare Hospice Benefit in 1986. At the time, the hospice industry was relatively small and dominated by small, independently-run non-profit organizations. However, the past 20 years has seen the hospice industry grow in exponential fashion, from less than 200,000 patients per year to a number that now exceeds 1 million patients per year. In addition, the pricing umbrella afforded by the establishment of the Medicare hospice benefit has attracted for-profit entities into this traditionally non-profit market sector. This paper discusses the higher-order societal implications of the entrance of for-profit firms into a traditionally non-profit market sector. Macromarketing impacts are discussed from the perspective of dominant social paradigm (DSP) theory. Finally, areas for future exploration are set forth. As the US population ages, the need to find better ways of caring for dying people and their loved ones is becoming more acute. The hospice industry in the US is a relatively small and fragmented component of the overall healthcare industry, generating aggregate annual revenues of about $4.5 billion in 2003. However, the growth in this sub-sector has been quite dramatic: Medicare spending on hospice care grew at a 13% compounded annual growth rate between 1995 and 2002, while aggregate patient volume grew at an 11% compounded annual growth rate between 1985 and 2002 (Shattuck Hammond Partners 2004). There are several factors driving this growth: 1. The overall aging trend in the US and the increasing size of the over 65 population. 2. The increasing role of advocacy groups in promoting hospice care over other end-of-life alternatives. 3. Favorable regulatory trends. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), a Federal agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, appears to be promoting hospice care through its liberal policies for reimbursement, at least in part because hospice is viewed as a lower cost alternative to traditional, hospital-based end-of-life care. 4. Higher usage rates. Hospice care is being viewed as a more accepted and appealing alternative by doctors, patients, and families. This is particularly true for usage rates by non-cancer patients. (Shattuck Hammond Partners 2004) Hospice care is defined by the Hospice Association of America as: “…comprehensive, palliative medical care (treatment to provide for the reduction or abatement of pain and other troubling symptoms, rather than treatment aimed at cure) and supportive social, emotional, and spiritual services to the terminally ill and their families, primarily in the patient’s home. The hospice interdisciplinary team, composed of professionals and volunteers, coordinates an individualized plan of care for each patient and family.” (Hospice Association of America website, 2005) Palliative care differs from curative care in that its objective is to ameliorate pain and suffering, both physical and mental, as opposed to curing the patient of the illness. In 1986, Congress permanently enacted the Medicare Hospice benefit. A significant jump in usage of hospices occurred at this time.
Globalization and Performance in the New Millennium: A Look at firms from Developed and Developing Nations
Dr. Sally Sledge, Christopher Newport University, Newport News, VA
Although firms from developing countries are accounting for increasingly larger portions of the global economy in the new millennium, they have not been studied as frequently as their counterparts in developed countries. It is helpful to analyze the factors associated with going global for these new world competitors. This paper compares the performance of multinational corporations from developing and developed nations for the period 2000 – 2004. Developing country firms are shown to rely more heavily on foreign employees for success while developed country firms lean more on foreign affiliates, yet each group relies on foreign sales. The implications of internationalization for both groups are discussed. Directions for future research are given. There is much evidence that firms from developing nations are making significant inroads into the global economy, as indicated by Fortune Magazine’s Global 500, which ranks the largest corporations in the world by revenues. In 1990, no firms from the developing world were listed in any of the world’s top business listings. Yet in 2005, a record 9 firms from developing countries were in the Fortune Global 100 and 57 were listed in the Fortune Global 500. This makes nearly 1 in 10 firms from the developing world a part of this elite list. The ranking shows that in 2005, revenues of the firms from the 10 largest developing economies totaled $1,631.5 billion, approximately 10% of firm revenues from the 10 largest developed economies, which amounted to $16,073.7 billion. Additional verification of the increasing market power of firms from developing countries comes in the form of frequent references in business textbooks and the popular press (Hill, 2004; Peng, 2005). Companies such as cement maker Cemex of Mexico, Singapore Airlines, Acer Computers of Taiwan, petroleum giant Petrobras of Brazil and LG Electronics of South Korea are among those cited as success stories. According to the United States Patent and Trademark Office, a total of 28,315 patents were assigned to individuals and businesses in developing countries during the period 2001-2003, which was more than any previous period on record (USPTO data, 2004). This number attests to the fact that firms from the developing world are becoming more innovative and thus more competitive with their rivals from developed countries. Other trends that speak to the increasing importance of these firms include the increasing prominence of the banking, natural resources and tourism industries in international business. Large emerging markets such as India, Brazil and China are increasingly becoming major sources of and consumers of these products. Most economists project that the growth and influence of firms from the developing world will continue to increase steadily for the first half of the 21st century (Global Economic Prospects, 2005). It has been over 10 years since the United Nations Council on Trade And Development (UNCTAD) began tracking multinational corporations (MNCs) from developing economies, thus it is appropriate to study these firms now that more than a decade of data has been collected (World Investment Report, 2004). This paper is an exploratory step in this direction. It will investigate the links between internationalization and performance among firms from the developed world and firms from the developing world. To that end, the following research questions will be addressed: 1. How global are the top MNCs from developing nations and the top MNCs from developed nations? 2. Does the relationship between globalization and firm performance differ for these two groups?
A Model Continuous Improvement Based ERP Applications Class
Gary B. McCombs, Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, MI
The author believes that it is important to include enterprise resource planning (ERP) skills and applications in academic programs. Although difficulties were expected in implementing an ERP applications class, the author nonetheless pursued the matter and started such a course. This paper reports on those efforts as they relate to an Oracle accounting applications class, but it includes information on course content that is adaptable to a variety of ERP platforms and disciplines. The course was basically segmented into so-called “hands on” components and more traditional academic components. Student ratings and feedback have been obtained and are presented for all significant class assignments for four semesters of offering the course. These ratings serve as the underpinnings for a continuous improvement mode of course offering; the feedback and work submitted by students each semester is used to update and improve the components of the course in each subsequent offering. The author believes that a number of the ideas, assignments and projects presented will prove useful regardless of the specific ERP or applications chosen. Further, hopefully they will prove to be useful to schools that are in the process of implementing or considering an ERP classroom system. Enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems essentially promise better information and more information, with the anticipation of lower costs in an enterprise wide real time environment (Krumwiede and Jordan, 2000). ERPs are business management systems that integrate all facets of the business, including planning, manufacturing, finance, sales and marketing, into a tightly integrated business process / information system, facilitating a seamless exchange of information across the organization (Mabert et al., 2001; Stevens, 2003). ERP packages are known to be information systems that help companies integrate their operations for better speed, efficiency and agility, although successful implementation requires a clear business strategy (Gadson, 2001; Kocakulah and Willett, 2003). To be successful ERPs need to be business solutions, not just technology solutions (Davenport, 2000). The ability to cross departmental, global and other organizational boundaries and remove information ownership through the use of a common database drives their success. Further, the software makers, in their efforts to continue their revenue increases after the sales push achieved from Y2K and Euro conversions, are targeting their product at smaller and smaller companies (Jones, 2002). It is no wonder then that many colleges and universities wish to develop and provide courses with significant ERP content; this is evidenced by the hundreds of international college and university members in the Oracle and SAP academic alliances. And this desire will extend to all departments and disciplines that provide knowledge in ERP related areas, although they will have significant concerns about committing substantial amounts of resources on an ERP initiative. Further, given its very nature, ERP provides an opportunity for curriculum integration across disciplines, especially in the business area (Joseph and George, 2002). There is also growing evidence that students with ERP skills obtain higher salaries (Sager et al., 2006). This paper reports on the efforts that culminated in the creation and offering of an ERP applications class in a relatively short time period.
Revised Mean Absolute Percentage Errors (Mape) for Independent Normal Time Series
Dr. Luh-Yu (Louie) Ren, University of Houston-Victoria, Sugar Land, Texas
Commonly used Mean Absolute Percentage Errors (MAPE), and author’s revised Mean Absolute Percentage Errors (RMAPE) are applied to measure the forecasting accuracy from different Moving Average Methods for independent normal time series. Simulation results show that both MAPE and RMAPE can only provide sensitive forecasting accuracy measurements on Moving Average Methods when coefficients of variation (c.v.) is smaller than 0.4 or is greater than 2.0 for an independent normal time series. For independent time series with moderate c.v.’s, the complexity from the ratios of MAPE and RMAPE will mislead researchers on distinguishing the forecasting accuracies from different Moving Average Methods. The complexity from the ratios will be released only when the c.v. is very small, or when the c.v. is very large. Therefore, when data are from independent normal time series, the Mean Absolute Deviation (MAD) reveals valid the forecasting accuracies from various Moving Average Methods, but not from MAPE or RMAPE. Mean Absolute Percentage Errors (MAPE),, is a widely used accuracy measurement in forecasting with non-negative actual observations, for instance, on monthly or quarterly sales. It expresses the forecasting errors from different measurement units into percentage errors on actual observations. One common criticism of the MAPE is on its existence when the actual observation At is equal to 0. However, in practical forecasts such as forecasts on profits, actual observations may end up with negative values. In this paper, a revised definition for mean absolute percentage error (RMAPE), , is considered. Simulation results show that neither MAPE nor RMAPE is a sensitive forecasting accuracy measurement for comparing different Moving Average Methods with moving periods (p) of 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, and averaging periods k of 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11, on independent normal time series with coefficients of variation between 0.4 to 2.0. 10,000 random data are simulated from each of Normal Distributions with a mean of 1 and a standard deviation of 0.1, 0.2, …, 1.9, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0 and 5.0 (i.e., with coefficients of variation (c.v.) of 0.1, 0.2, …, 1.9, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0 and 5.0). The data is then grouped into 1,000 groups with 20 observations each. The first nine (9) observations in each group are treated as historical observations, and the tenth (10th) to twentieth (20th) observations are treated as the future 11 observations. Moving average methods with moving period of 1, 3, 7, and 9 are applied to historical observations and their forecasts compared with the first future observation (the 10th observation). Absolute Percentage Deviation, , is calculated for the first future observation. Now, include the 11th observation into the new historical group. Moving average methods with moving period of 1, 3, 7, and 9 are applied to the most current 9 historical observations counted back from the 10th observation (i.e., the first observation in the old historical data group is eliminated), and their forecasts are compared with the “new” first future observation (the 11th observation). Absolute Percentage Deviation, , is calculated. Continue the above process until we find out the 11th Absolute Percentage Deviation, .
Taiwanese Executive’s Leadership Styles and Their Preferred Decision-Making Models used in Mainland China
Peng-Hsiang Kao, Ph.D., China Industrial & Commercial Research Institute, Taipei, Taiwan
Hsin Kao, Ph.D., China Industrial & Commercial Research Institute, Taipei, Taiwan
This research measured the relationship between the leadership style and preferred decision-making models used by executives at traditional Taiwanese-investment companies in Shanghai, China. This study used a quantitative research methodology. The Leader Behavior Description Questionnaire XII and the General Decision-Making Style Scale were used to measure perceived leadership style and decision-making style, respectively. Four leadership styles were measured based on different intensities of the combination of consideration behavior with initiating structure behavior. Decision-making models comprised the dimensions of rational, intuitive, dependent, avoidant, and spontaneous. The results show that the leadership styles are related to the decision-making models. As the East Asia market has grown, its influence on the world economy has become more significant (Yi, 1998). There are two important economic powers in this market: China and Taiwan. Many economic scholars believe that Mainland China will become the biggest market in the 21st century and have the most economic power in the world by 2020; therefore, more and more industries are investing in Mainland China (Liu & Li, 1998). To do this successfully, businesses must have accurate information so that they understand this market environment. This information may influence a company’s decisions and strategies, such as enabling a company to determine the proper timeframe to enter the market. Recently, the business environment in Taiwan has undergone enormous changes, such as the awakening of labor force issues, the rising cost of labor, the variation in the exchange rate, the competition for property, and the market saturation of products. These factors have caused many small and middle-sized enterprises to lose their cost-benefit competitive advantage (Lee, 1999). Moving external operations to Mainland China undoubtedly would accelerate the shift of companies’ competitiveness. Attracted by the cheap raw materials and labor force in China, Taiwanese companies, who share the same culture and language with the people of the mainland, have been enthusiastic about investing in Mainland China. According to Erven (2001), “Every business needs leadership. Leadership is one of the ways that managers affect the behavior of people in the business. Most successful managers are also successful leaders. They get people to work to accomplish the organization’s goals” (p. 2). Leadership refers to a person’s ability to guide, modify, and direct the actions of others in such a way as to gain their cooperation in doing a job: It is the ability of a person to facilitate the problem-solving processes of others. Essentially, leadership is a process of influence; personal traits, attitudes, values, and past experience influence leadership styles and performance. Situational leadership is designed to help all levels of managers become more effective in their daily interactions with others. Effective leaders utilize participative decision making as a mechanism of supervision and control; by involving everyone in both the problem analysis and the derived solution, better information is generated and everyone is more committed to implementing the decision and solving the problem. Influence is a function of commitment and involvement (Hill, 1977). Decision makers have a significant problem related to their positions in the organization; that is, their subjective point of view and preference might influence the decision process (Montgomery & Sevenson, 1989). Consequently, decision-making is a difficult and challenging job for leaders at all levels of a corporation, both large and small.
Exploring Customer Repeat Patronage in Tourism: The Influence of Marketing Culture, Relational Selling, and Sales Expertise
Cheng-Yuan Hsu, Chungyu Institute of Technology, Taiwan
Dr. Chou-Kang Chiu, Ching Kuo Institute of Management & Health, Taiwan
This study examines the formation of customer satisfaction and repeat patronage towards a travel agent in tourism. In the proposed model of this study, marketing culture, relational selling behavior and sales expertise indirectly influence customer repeat patronage through the mediation of satisfaction with a travel agent. Meanwhile, marketing culture has also a direct influence on customer repeat patronage. Several propositions related to the model are stated as important reference for management in tourism. Finally, discussion and limitations of this study are also provided. The advocacy of a sound culture that facilitates the successful marketing practice in tourism such as customer satisfaction and repeat patronage has been witnessed for the last decade (Appiah-Adu, Fyall and Singh, 2000). Today customer repeat patronage is crucial to tourist service. Proponents of this view assert that the internal culture of a travel agent plays a substantial role in service marketing and may impact customer satisfaction and repeat patronage (Appiah-Adu et al., 2000). There is no doubt that travel agents are now seeking customers by offering highly competitive services in order to obtain their satisfaction and repeat patronage in a long run, but such satisfaction and repeat patronage counts on successful service marketing of that agent. However, previous research has summarized that service marketing is tougher to manage than product marketing due to its intangibility, variability, inseparability and perishability (Appiah-Adu et al., 2000). For the purpose of providing management with strategies to overcome the tough issue of service marketing, this study identifies the critical determinants of repeat patronage from a perspective of intangible service factors such as marketing culture, relational selling behaviors and so on, in order to shed some light for management in learning how to achieve an ultimate goal of customer satisfaction and repeat patronage. This research differs from previous works in a principal area. That is, the applicability of marketing culture to strengthening customer satisfaction and repeat patronage has been extensively studied for tangible goods in general. In contrast, highly intangible service of travel agents from an angle of marketing culture has attracted little attention. Therefore, this work explores customer satisfaction and repeat patronage from an aspect of intangible service of travel agents and draws useful inferences for management in tourism. To sum up, since marketing culture and other factors proposed in this study are generally acknowledged to profoundly affect one’s response to service of travel agents, specifying the impacts of these factors can guide the agents to design different strategies for different potential customers and consequently achieve high customer repeat patronage. The conceptual model proposed in this study is displayed as Figures 1. In the proposed model, marketing culture has a direct influence on customer repeat patronage. Accordingly, marketing culture, relational selling behavior and sales expertise also indirectly influence customer repeat patronage through the mediation of satisfaction with a travel agent. Through such a proposed model, not only can managerial discussion be provided, but also the most appropriate model for exploring customer repeat patronage in service contexts of tourism can be specifically emphasized. (Insert Figure 1 About Here) Satisfaction with the relationship between customers and their travel agent is not only considered as an important outcome of customer-agent relationship (Smith and Barclay, 1997), but also an emotional state that occurs in response to an assessment of customer-agent interaction experiences (Lin and Ding, 2005; Westbrook, 1981).
Effects of System Trial on Consumer Beliefs in Marketing Software Products
Dr. Yao-kuei Lee, Tajen University, Pingtung, Taiwan, ROC
Marketers are constantly faced with designing an appropriate level of marketing stimulus at which a potential consumer can experience a sensation. Potential consumers generally are constrained with time and energy to explore new products and services. This study attempts to investigate the effects of a system trial as a marketing stimulus on potential consumers’ beliefs. Using a web-based e-learning system, the examination reveals that targeted consumers with or without system trial experience present differences in their determinants of behavioral intentions and beliefs. Potential consumers with system trial experience form a higher perception of usefulness, their intention to use e-learning for distance education purpose is more strongly affected by system functionality, their intention to use e-learning as a supplementary learning tool is more strongly affected by perceived usefulness, and their perception of ease of use is also more strongly influenced by system response. Without system trial, potential consumers’ self-efficacy plays a more important role but only to the extent of forming a higher perception of ease of use. These findings enhance our understanding of marketing information goods to potential consumers. The information service and software market in Taiwan has experienced a steady growth for the past several years and the trend will continue in the foreseeable future. Based upon the report by the Institute of Information Industry (Taiwan), the market growth is driven mostly by the following five factors: (1) optimistic economy, (2) enriched digital content, (3) business globalization, (4) e-Taiwan plan, and (5) e-learning needs. The software markets cross straits show a similar growth trend as well (Taiwan Economic Daily News, 2004-02-07). Traditionally, marketers as agents of change attempt to find ways to influence consumers use or purchasing behavior. One of the employed methods is for consumers to experiment with the product on a limited basis and make evaluation before use or purchasing. For example, some of the common practices are: (1) giving out trial-size samples of consumer goods, (2) providing limited trial of durable goods, and (3) offering test-drive of the latest auto models. These practices are designed to make consumers aware of the new products and at the same time reduce the risk perceived by prospective buyers. The costs associated with these such as producing and delivering trial samples sometimes are significant, as in the case of cosmetics. Information service and software marketing has similar but different aspects due to the so-called information economics. For example, to market a new software product, companies may provide customers with a test version having a three-month expiration date, a free version handling only a limited numbers of variables, or a guest account to use for a web-based system with limited functionalities. Furthermore, the Internet extends the time and place convenience for consumers to try out the new product. Although additional development costs may be required, the marginal costs of distribution or delivery are trivial or near-zero (Nejmeh 1994) in comparison with traditional consumer goods. Software companies more than likely will leverage this cost advantage to a greater extent in accelerating new product introduction in order to capitalize on the growth markets. Therefore, it becomes vital to investigate the effects of the trial. This study used a web-based system to evaluate the effects of system trial on consumers’ beliefs and intentions regarding e-learning use. In particular, the following research questions guided the study: (1) Do the potential consumer groups with or without system trial experience have similar beliefs and use intentions regarding the software product? (2) Do the relationships between consumers’ behavioral intentions to use an e-learning system and determinant factors differ for trial and non-trial groups? In understanding consumer behavior, theory of reasoned action (TRA) has been used to explain the relationship among attitude, intention, and actual behavior (Ajzen and Fishbein 1980). Based on TRA, technology acceptance model (TAM) was developed as a parsimonious model to understand the information technology acceptance (Davis et al. 1989).
Electronic-Commerce Market Entry and Exit Decisions with Jump Risk under Uncertainty
Ching-hsien Chiu, National Sun Yat- Sen University, and Lecturer, Far East College, Taiwan
This paper develops an entry and exit decisions in e-commerce market with jump risk for a company under uncertainty. It is evaluated by value matching and smooth pasting conditions to assess the entry and exit thresholds for two decisions. A sensitivity analysis is used to simulate the effect of parameters on entry and exit thresholds. For entry thresholds, the positive correlation factors are price volatility, risk free interest, operation cost, investment cost; the negative correlation factors for entry thresholds are jump risk. For exit thresholds, the positive correlation factors are, operation cost, risk free interest; the negative correlation factors for entry thresholds are exit cost, price volatility. Some import implications to invest and disinvestment in an e-commerce project are provided. Electronic Commerce is an idea for trade based upon products and services that are being marketed, contracted, and paid for over the web. Consequently, electronic commerce stress for the investment in computer systems, marketing, logistics and payments (Bergendahl, 2005).Electronic-Commerce (EC) investment has been growing rapidly since1995. The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development reported that total EC sales in the United States will achieve US$1000 billion per annum among 2003 and 2005, an increase of 3854%,up from an predictable US$26 billion per annum in 1996–1997 (National Office for the Information Economy, 2000). Concerning global e-commerce statistics, at the end of 2004, the United States had almost 186 million web users and worldwide the amount of users exceeded 945 million(ET Forecasts, 2005). Furthermore, corresponding sales revenues in the Asia-Pacific were estimated to grow from US$6.8 billion in 2000 to US$14 billion in 2001 (Boston Consulting Group, 2001). In the recent study about the e-commerce investment, real options approach has been often used. The reasons are as follows. (1)The optimal timing for investment in e-commerce can be delayed, shut down, restarted or abandoned. A delay in investment gives an opportunity to obtain a more developed information technology system as well as more information about market conditions. On the other hand, a delay may result in a loss of cash flows to competitors. (2)The expected stream of net profits for an e-commerce project has a high degree of uncertainty. (3) E-commerce investments are irreversible or partly irreversible. (4)The firm can wait for new information regarding prices, costs, and other market conditions before investing in E-commerce investment (Dixit and Pindyck, 1995; Bergendahl, 2005). Some seminars were studied on e-commerce investment. Whelan and McGrath ( 2002 ) present the total life cycle cost of an E-Commerce investment and think that an EC cost taxonomy concerned tangible and intangible should be incorporated during the various phase of the project cycle. Ferguson et al. (2005) divide electronic commerce investment project announcements into innovative and noninnovative to decide whether there are excess returns associated with these types of announcements. They find that noninnovative investments seem as more valuable to the firm than innovative investments. On average, the market expects innovative investments to earn a return commensurate with their risk. Some import questions of ecommerce evaluation was noted by Doherty and McAulay ( 2002 ).They are,(1)Is a simple EC evaluation framework?,(2)What is the costs and benefits, risk, flexibility for EC investment?(3)Is there the specific tools, techniques or approaches for evaluating investment? Bergendahl (2005) thinks Electronic commerce as an investment opportunity and develops some conditions for beneficial investments in ecommerce. Bergendahl (2005) suggests that it should develop a multi-period investment model in order to handle risk in the future. One new way of thinking is to formulate the uncertain sales growth in terms of a binomial lattice and reformulate the model as one of real options. Conventional discounted cash flow (DCF) techniques including net present value (NPV) and internal rate of return (IRR) are not used or widely used in IT investment decision making, partly due to their failure to identify the management flexibility ( Bacon, 1992 ; Weill, 1993 ;Dixit and Pindyck ,1995 ; Abel et al. ,1996 ).
4C Diamond Model: Performance Appraisal System Mechanism
Yi-che Chen, Yuan-Ze University, Taiwan, R.O.C.
Pi-feng Hsieh, Tak-Ming College and Yuan-Ze University, Taiwan, R.O.C.
This study focuses on performance appraisal for S&T development. Themes regarding organizational performance appraisal have been examined via literature review. The concept of the 4C Diamond Model was used to conduct a diagnosis and comparison between the major systems in Taiwan and the U.S., namely the Accreditation System for R&D Organizations from the National Science Council in Taiwan, and the Government Performance and Result Act in the U.S. This study concluded that an effective appraisal system should include a clear reason for the appraisal, a feedback linkage, and a functional operation process which is incorporated within a comprehensive index system. Meanwhile, appraisal results must be disclosed to ensure fairness and credibility, especially when public funds are being used. Since the 20th century, science and technology have advanced rapidly. All countries now regard scientific and technological developments as major sources of national competitiveness. In the course of these developments, all countries are making strong efforts to establish technology policies or to allocate research resources in the hope of promoting economic development and social progress. This will be achieved through effective planning and execution of scientific and technological development strategies. Countries all over the world attach enormous importance to the dynamic performance and execution of scientific and technological development strategies. Taiwan has invested considerable R&D funds in scientific and technological development (see Fig. 1). Taking public agencies as an example, the government has set a scientific and technological annual development budget of tens of billions of dollars (in 2001, excluding the budget for defense technology development, the total budget for all central government agencies and councils amounted to $51,647 million, of which the National Science Council (NSC) donated $18,709 million). (NSC, 2002). Through compiling, entrusting, subsidizing, and cooperating during the preliminary stages of creating annual budgets, funds are provided to governmental research organizations, consortia, academic organizations, and industrial R&D departments. All of these organizations are encouraged to engage in technological innovation and applied research. Consortia received the most funds, followed by academic research units such as Academia Sinica, and universities. The funds are sourced from the annual governmental budget or from the National Science Council. With the recent change in the objective conditions of limited budgets, the R&D resources of the government are being stretched to their limits. The performance and capabilities of R&D institutions are a key concern for the allocation of the resources. Therefore, the technological policies of the government are expected to clarify the required resources inputs and associated benefit outputs, thus enabling more rational and efficient resource allocation. Furthermore, with Taiwan’s entry to the WTO, foreign enterprises can undertake S&T projects in Taiwan under the Government Procurement Law. Consequently, the Executive Yuan established “Operational Guidelines for Governmental R&D Procurement”(NSC, 2001) in accordance with the decision that “R&D should establish appropriate procurement rules” made by the Sixth National Science and Technology Conference. Consistent with Item 1, Article 6 of the Science and Technology Basic Law (1999), “science and technology R&D which is subsidized, entrusted or financed by the government should identify the research objects using a selection or investigation procedure, which should enclose main content,” every governmental organization must establish a science and technology performance appraisal discussion committee to conduct an objective and scrupulous appraisal. Therefore, a clear performance appraisal mode for science and technology institutions to display in a specific, definite and objective way is essential for understanding the state of scientific and technological development in Taiwan. Performance appraisal is a part of the control function in management activities.
Parametric and Nonparametric Evaluation of USDA Hog Price Forecast
Dr. Sung Chul No, Southern University and A&M, Baton Rouge, LA
This study provides a comprehensive evaluation of USDA hog price forecasts and proposes a comparable time-series forecasting model for US hog prices based on an input-output price relationship. Having conducted various parametric and nonparametric forecasting evaluation tests, the study found a trivariate VAR model consisting of corn, soybeans, and hog prices comparable to USDA forecasting model. The empirical evidence thus suggests that market participants in general and hog producers in particular who seek accurate forecasts and at the same time a prediction of general hog price movements would be better off when they supplement the USDA hog price forecasts with time-series forecasts. As the structure of agricultural industries continues to change, the unwelcome reality of record low hog prices have forced many small farmers out of business. The cyclical nature of agricultural production sometimes caused by uncontrollable factors have been minimized to some degree via confined, climate controlled, air tight facilities used by most vertically coordinated firms. However, in the past five years, droughts in the Midwestern and Southeastern regions of the country have driven corn prices up and many small non-contract producers who did not have resource-providing agreements found it difficult to survive receiving less than 30 dollars per hundred pounds for hogs during 1998, 1999 and 2002. To minimize this problem, several marketing strategies, such as forward-contracting, revenue insurance, hedging, options, diversified enterprises and extensive research have been proposed and implemented by economists. Another pivotal component in improving marketing decision for future hog production is to use accurate public hog price forecasts. Economic Research Service of the USDA provides a quarterly forecast in its monthly “Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Situation and Outlook.” However, it is critically important that market participants in general and hog producers in particular understand the uncertainty surrounding USDA hog price forecasts as well as any systematic biases that they might include. Preliminary study indicated the USDA one-quarter-ahead price forecasts are inefficient in that they are not minimum variance forecasts. Thus, this paper propose a simple yet comparable time-series forecasting model for quarterly USDA hog prices based on an input-output price relationship. This is completed after the paper examines the USDA price forecasts using parametric and nonparametric evaluation criteria. The quarterly hog prices ($/cwt) were collected from “Red Meats Yearbook” which reports the U.S. average market prices of gilts and barrows from 1979 to 2004. U.S. average corn and soybean prices ($/bushel) were collected from the National Agricultural Statistical Service. The USDA’s hog price forecasts were obtained from various monthly “Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Situation and Outlook” (ERS/USDA). The midpoints of the USDA’s hog price forecast are used for evaluating the USDA quarterly forecasts. The USDA’s LDPSO report was published on a monthly basis, and is released between the 22nd and the 30th of each month from January, 2000 to January 2005 and between the 15th and 19th of each month from February, 2005 to June, 2005. The USDA price forecasts are collected from February, May, August, and November reports for each calendar quarter. For instance, the forecasted price for the first calendar quarter is collected from the November report in the previous year to have a complete one-quarter-ahead forecast.
Understanding the Violent Offender in the Workplace
Dr. Bella L. Galperin, The University of Tampa, Tampa, FL
Dr. Joanne D. Leck, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada
Violence in the workplace is increasing at an alarming rate. Despite the growing prevalence of workplace violence, little is known about the perpetrators of these violent acts. This exploratory study attempts to assess how many potential perpetrators are in our workforce, and what organizational characteristics, such as human resources practices and procedures, foster the creation of the violent offender. Future research directions and practical implications are also discussed. Workplace violence has become an important issue for organizations today. According to a report published by the U.S. Department of Justice, approximately one thousand employees are murdered yearly while performing their work duties (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1999). Homicide has become the leading cause of on-the-job death for women, and the second leading cause for men. Although a great majority of workers who are killed on the job die during the commission of another offence, such as robbery, death resulting from the violent acts perpetrated by a fellow colleague is the next most common reason. Other studies on workplace violence yield similar alarming findings (see Atkinson, 2000). For instance, the Northwestern National Life Insurance Company found that 2.5 percent of respondents had been physically attacked on the job at least once. The American Management Association found that 52 percent of respondents reported experiencing at least one incident or threat of violence in the workplace over a three-year period. The Society for Human Resources Management found that 48 percent of surveyed employees experienced a violent incident in the workplace over a two-year period. These incidents included verbal threats (39 percent), pushing and shoving (22 percent) and fist fights (14 percent). Despite the prevalence of violence in the workplace, little is known on the perpetrators of these violent acts. While a number of books and articles on workplace violence have profiled the violent offender as “a Caucasian male, in his 40s or 50s, divorced or separated, a loner with an interest in guns” (Braverman, 1999), these profiles only provide a limited understanding of the factors that encourage employees to engage in violent behaviors. Environmental factors, such as the organizational context, can also contribute to violence. The primary objective of this exploratory study is to develop a greater understanding of the potentially violent offender. Unlike the majority of the literature on workplace violence that focuses on the personal characteristics of the offender, this study also examines the organizational context that fosters the creation of the violent offender. It is argued that organizational factors, such as human resource practices and procedures, can play an important role in contributing to the creation of the violent offender. Future research directions are also highlighted. Finally, practical implications are discussed. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Long Island Coalition for Workplace Violence (1996, p.1), workplace violence includes: “the commission of proscribed criminal acts of coercive behavior which occurs in the work setting. It includes, but is not limited to homicides, forcible sex offences, kidnapping, assault, robbery, menacing, reckless endangerment, harassment, and disorderly conduct”. There are many other terms used to describe worker mistreatment, such as bullying (Leck, 2003), aggression (Neuman & Baron, 1998), abuse (Keashly, Trott & Maclean, 1994), incivility (Cortina, Magley, Williams & Langhout), deviance (Galperin, 2005; Robinson & Bennett, 1995), antisocial behavior (Giacolone & Greenberg, 1997), harassment (Einersan, 1999) and dysfunctional behavior (Griffin, O’Leary-Kelly & Collins, 1998). Violence differs from these other forms of mistreatment in two important ways. First, an employee usually commits a violent act only once (e.g., shoots the boss). Second, the act is physical in nature. Because of the severity of violence, it is important that ‘loose cannons’ be identified (and managed) before the act occurs.
Studies in Strategic Management in Taiwan
Dr. Chiou-Hua Lin, Ming Chuan University, Taiwan
Yuan-Kai Chi, Ming Chuan University, Taiwan
Competition among corporations is increasingly complicated and multi-faceted, which, together with the impact of drastic changes in the macro environment, is forcing companies to focus on being able not only to foresee such changes, but also to respond to them very quickly. This process is the core of strategic management, and it goes beyond just managing a company’s internal efficiency. Markets today are complicated and fast changing, as both globalization and high tech development have greater impact on industry. Corporations can no longer rely on one or two specialists to formulate strategy and implement tactics. Instead, comprehensive strategic planning and its execution drive the long-term success of the corporation. No corporation can any longer rely on a single competitive strength to maintain its lead in the market in perpetuity, as its competitors will continue to seek new ways to overtake it. Instead, by using the concept of Hyper-Competition, a corporation can apply different strategies in response to different competitive environments, to gain competitive strength. Strategic management can be divided into four major areas as shown in Fig 1-1. These areas are: strategic management factors (strategist, mission, objective), competitive strength analysis, strategy layout, strategy implementation, and control. Each area, in turn, results in a series of steps, starting from a strategist defining a corporation’s mission and main objective, followed by external and internal analysis, then by formulating consortium strategy, business strategy and function strategy, and finally by the design of an implementation and control system. This paper will take the case of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. ("Foxconn"), a famous multinational corporation in Taiwan, to analyze its strategic management process. Strategic management key factors include strategist, mission and objective. A strategist is the strategy formulator of a corporation. While in small companies it may be a single individual, on most companies there will be several members on a strategic management team, with major members being the board chairman, high-level managers and key planning personnel. In most cases, the high-level managers formulate the strategy, while the board and planning staff function as advisors. A corporation’s mission (or mission statement) proclaims the reason for its existence, its role in society, and industrial environment within which it chooses to operate. An objective clearly outlines those things the corporation must do to fulfill that mission. A corporation’s mission and objective are closely related, with both providing guidance as to the corporation’s overall direction. The strategist, however, is the decision maker. Remember that the concept of a strategist may involve a team of individuals each of whom will play different roles in the strategic management process. Internal analysis: outlines both the strengths of a corporation and its weaknesses. A well-managed company will provide value to customers, and gain in strength against its competitors. These international operations are of particular importance to the resource-oriented corporation and competition viewpoint theories and research & development. Ways used to analyze internal strength and weakness of a corporation include: Critical success factors: First each industry has its own success factors, determined by such elements as the product portfolio, inventory turnover, sales promotion and pricing. Next, external macro environmental factorsinfluence a company’s success. Lastly, internal organizational development may impact other success factors, such as human resource management. Value Chain: Value chain analysis observes individual activities inside a business that contribute to the entire value generated by a company, and its final financial performance.
The Mediating Effects of Leader-member Exchange Quality to Influence the Relationships between Paternalistic Leadership and Organizational Citizenship Behaviors
Dr. Shing-Ko Liang, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan
Hsiao-Chi Ling, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan
Sung-Yi Hsieh, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan
Military leaders play a very important role in their organizations. However, past research on military leadership in Taiwan has mainly verified theories developed by western countries, without taking cultural differences into account. Our study uses the model of paternalistic leadership, an indigenous Chinese leadership style, to examine the relationships between Taiwan’s military leadership behaviors and organizational citizenship behaviors (OCBs). Additionally, this study adopts the leader-member exchange quality to explore the mediating effect between leadership behavior and leadership effectiveness. Our study took 215 military leaders and 430 subordinates from 21 military units in Taiwan as subjects, and found that: (1) benevolent leadership and moral leadership have a positive effect on OCBs, whereas authoritarian leadership has a negative effect on OCBs; and (2) the relationship between leaders’ benevolent and authoritarian leadership and OCBs is mediated by leader-member exchange quality. The directions for further research and implications are discussed in the conclusion. For a long time, in both academic circles and industry, “leadership” has been an important topic. But since leadership is a very complicated phenomenon, we cannot grasp the nature of leadership through conjecture. After the 20th century, leadership finally became a subject of scientific research (Cheng, & Huang, 2000). However, despite the abundance of research on the theory of business leadership, there is a lack of research on the effectiveness of military leadership, even though there are vast differences between the two in terms of structure, nature, contents and culture (Cheng, & Zhuang, 1981; Cheng,, 1985a; Ling, 2001). Therefore, this research aims to construct a fitting leadership model for Taiwan military organizations and proposed a model of effective military leadership. Taiwan’s military leadership is different from that of western countries. Leaders’ behaviors that are effective in some cultures, regions or countries are not effective in others (Hofstede, 1980). In order to understand the leadership of Chinese organizations, some researchers, following Silin (1976), have adopted an indigenous approach to the study of middle and top rank leaders of Chinese family-owned businesses in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Singapore and Taiwan (such as Cheng, 1995a; Redding 1990). They pointed out that the leadership of Chinese business organizations had distinctive characteristics and strong authority but also cared about and understood their employees and showed highly individual moral principles. Such a leadership style is not only found in family businesses, but also in the public sector and in other organizations. The researchers call this “paternalistic leadership” (PL) (Westwood & Chan, 1992; Farh & Cheng, 2000; Pye, 1985; Cheng, Bo-Shun, Chou, Li-Fang & Fang Jing-Li, 2000). The researchers therefore planned to explore the effectiveness of paternalistic leadership. What is effective leadership? In the research, organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) will act as an index. Organizational citizenship behavior refers to voluntary and self-motivated actions by members. Such actions are not formal or necessary behaviors directly requested by organization, but they can help an organization reach its goals. In a military organization, if they want to enhance administrative efficiency and strengthen training effectiveness, it is important that the members should not only do their best to complete “their on-duty” training but also show “altruistic behaviors when they are “off-duty.”
The Influence of Need-for-Uniqueness on Loss Aversion and Framing Effect
Dr. Chien-Huang Lin, National Central University, Taiwan
Li-Huei Wang, National Central University & Chin Min Institute of Technology, Taiwan
This research explores the influence of need for uniqueness (NFU) in loss aversion and framing effect. Two studies have been done to verify that high-NFU people are less likely to choose the popular options and are less susceptible to loss aversion and framing effect. In addition, we also support the work of Simonson and Nowlis (2000) that the combination of explanations and high-NFU will generate more unconventional choices than the others. There are three factors (careless, anticonformity, and defense) extracted from the NFU scale developed by Snyder and Fromkin (1977). This presentation of empirical works show that without providing reason, high-careless people will be less likely to exhibit loss aversion and are less susceptible to framing effect than high-anticonforming people. Conversely, when people were asked to explain their decisions, high-anticonforming people will be less likely to exhibit loss aversion and be less susceptible to framing effect than high-careless people. Prior work on the effect of the social environment on consumer decision making have emphasized the tendency of consumers to conform to norms (Burnkrant and Consineau, 1975; Cialdini and Trost, 1998; Schiffman and Kanuk, 1994). However, consumers considering unconventional, minority options have noticed that such choices and reasons that can support them deviate from the norms. Many social psychologists (Brewer, 1991; Snyer and Fromkin, 1977) have manifested people’s desire for distinctiveness and uniqueness, but there are a few studies to explore significant effects which the need of uniqueness has on choice behavior. Simonson and Nowlis (2000) indicated that when consumers are encouraged to explain their decisions and are not concerned about others’ evaluations, the need for uniqueness can play an important role and a minority option might become the majority choice. According to the theory of uniqueness, high-unique consumers as compared to low-unique consumers should be less responsive to conformity pressures (Pepinsky, 1961). Furthermore, high-unique consumers are more willing to express their uniqueness behaviorally and risk social disapproval. Need for Uniqueness（NFU） scale developed by Snyder and Fromkin(1977) has been used widely. In Snyer and Fromkin’s study, “a lack of care others’ reaction to one’s different ideas, action, etc ” and “a desire to follow the rules” are two constructs of NFU. Both of the factors exhibit the high-need for uniqueness, but with different reasons. The former people are confident for their own beliefs or preferences. Thus, they do not care about others’ criticisms. The later are intention to anti-norm and like to break the rules. It implies that non-conformity people will anticipate to be evaluated by others and then act anti-norm on purpose. The differences between the two characteristics are seldom mentioned in the decision making field. Simonson and Nowlis (2000) proved that when high-NFQ people need to explain their decisions, they would make more unconventional choices. They demonstrate when consumers need to explain their decisions, they might be biased in favor of unconventional reasons, particularly among those who are predisposed to express their uniqueness. However, they did not further distinguish the two types needs for uniqueness. Since people in both types, lack of concern for others’ reactions and desire to disobey the rules, usually observed and consume by different motivations, we believe that clearing the mechanism will be very useful to the marketers. Independence is a quality that can be perceived as a sign of strong character, convictions and autonomy.
The Economics of Managing Information Networks
Dr. Mona Yousry, National University, CA
This paper develops the economics and the business model for a specialized wireless network solution for intelligent devices (IDs). This network utilizes software and hardware that needs to be put together so that it provides users a flexible user-friendly environment. The research investigates a Network Applications Service Operator (NASO) that concentrates on interconnected IDs. Intelligent devices (IDs) include sensors, switches, appliances, etc., from a large variety of manufacturers. IDs are capable of receiving instructions and returning information. In some cases they may be able to process data and issue commands via intelligent agents. Each type and brand of ID can be characterized by its parameter categories and formats, supported communications protocols, medium, security support and billing methods. In order for a user to access the NASO they would enter through a server portal that is intelligent, secure, and provides the applications and network connections. We call this an ISAP or Intelligent, Secure, Applications Portal. The following research will contain these areas: Tiered Intelligent Link Environment “TILE” Software, Software Definable Radio Links (SDR), Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM), Data Management Services via our Intelligent Secure Application Portal (ISAP), and network connections. The market for IDs is growing at an incredible rate, with 10 times the number of IDs than desktop PCs in use today. This solution overcomes many problems in the embedded technology marketplace; namely, the difficulty of networking and controlling IDs remotely, upgrades and maintenance. The technology in our research consists of Tiered billing, and a next-generation OSS suite all of which are network and application aware. Critical factors in the production of our “TILE” OSS suite are Quality of Service (QoS), which includes Security. Our “TILE” OSS is unique because there are currently no NASOs available for converged ID networks. This is perhaps the single most critical area of technical focus. Intelligent devices (IDs) include sensors, switches, appliances, etc., from a large variety of manufacturers. IDs are capable of receiving instructions and returning information and in some cases they may be able to process data and issue commands via intelligent agents. Each type and brand of ID can be characterized by its parameter categories and formats, supported communications protocols, medium, and security support. At the simplest level ID network is comprised of a sensor attached to a low cost robust radio transmitter which sends signals to a local receiver or gateway connected to an outside network server. The server runs in this case on our “TILE” software and controls the information coming from the sensor. This basic model can be expanded to include bi-directional communications if necessary. Once the basic components are in place they can be utilized in any situation that requires a wireless IDs solution. The utilities sub-stations provide a good application for testing. Utilities are seeking to automate the sub-stations allowing them to replace old manual relays with automated ones. They are also interested in monitoring various points such as dissolved gasses and “hot-spots” within a power transformer.
Establishment and Termination of Unincorporated Partnership in the Turkish Law
Dr. Mustafa Can, Ankara, Turkey
Firms have to use their resources and tools effectively and productively and measure their performance correctly in order to face globalization in an increasingly competitive environment. In addition, they have to meet the requirements of rapidly changing technology, globalization, and marketing and to have the share from the world marketing, to satisfy demand and profile of the customers. Therefore; the law must be reconstructed on the base on definition of law, characteristics of a unincorporated partnership, rights of partners, purposes of a unincorporated partnership, firm name, who may be partners, creation of unincorporated partnership, unincorporated partnership agreement, determining the existence of a unincorporated partnership, control, sharing profits and losses, sharing profits, contribution of property, unincorporated partnership property, assignment of a partner’s interest, effect of dissolution, dissolution by act of the parties, agreement, expulsion, alienation of interest, withdrawal, dissolution by operation of law, death, bankruptcy, illegality, dissolution by decree of court, insanity, incapacity, impracticability, equitable circumstances, winding up unincorporated partnerships affairs, distribution of assets all aspects in Turkish. This study is important for the Europe Union to know the Turkish Partnership Law System during the period of Turkey’s entering the Europe union. The simplest form of business enterprise is the unincorporated partnership. However, for numerous reasons, including the complexity of business transactions, demands of competition, need for capital and skill, and the desire for limitation of liability, persons cooperate in the form of associations (Ansay, 2002, 80). When two or more persons combine their capital and skills to achieve a common economic purpose, their exists a unincorporated partnership. Unincorporated partnerships are established by agreement. A codification of unincorporated partnership law is found in the Turkish Obligation Code. The Turkish Obligation Code is in effect in the Turkish Republican. After the proclamation of the Republic in 1923 radical reforms were introduced in legal matters as in other spheres of social life in Turkey. For example, the adoption of the Swiss Code of Obligations which contain the law of contracts, torts, unjust enrichment and unincorporated partnership which was adopted in 1926 with some minor alterations represented a profound change in the social life of Turkey (Guriz, 1987, 10). A unincorporated partnership today are relatively common form of business organization. Law historians tell us that early partnerships or organizations having some characteristics as early as 2000 B.C. In England, where partnership were particularly prevalent, the common law of partnerships was well-developed by the time the American colonies were founded (Kogan, 1977, 12). Today, most countries have adopted this form of business organization. Businesspersons take into account the advantages and disadvantages of establishing and operating different types of business associations in choosing the most suitable form for their purposes. For example, a small group of persons can choose to form a unincorporated partnership rather than corporation. Or, they can prefer to establish general partnership. But, unlike a unincorporated partnership, a general partnership has legal personality under Turkish law. Business associations are of various types and can be classified by differing characteristics.
Guanxi with Government as a Source of Competitive Advantage in Mainland China
Fangtao Zou, Huazhong University of Science & Technology, Wuhan city, China
Dr. Yongqiang Gao, Huazhong University of Science & Technology, Wuhan city, China
Guanxi is considered a unique Chinese phenomenon and a product of China’s contemporary political and socio-economic systems. Resource-based view of the firm argues that the distinct resources or capability hold by a company are the source of competitive advantage. Government guanxi acts as a source of corporate competitive advantage in China since it is valuable, rare, nonsubstitutable, and imperfectly imitable. In order to build and maintain a close guanxi with governments, three steps should be taken, namely finding out guanxi base or intermediary, taking actions to build guanxi, and taking actions to maintain guanxi. Guanxi is considered a unique Chinese phenomenon (the Economist, 8/4/2000) and a product of China’s contemporary political and socio-economic systems. Guanxi plays an important role in Chinese society. It may serve as means of signaling trust and integrity in a system that lacks strong background (Lovett et al., 1999). It may also constitute an informal network allowing individuals to bypass the inefficiencies inherent in a communist bureaucracy (Xin and Pearce, 1996). To date, the popular and academic literature has focused on descriptive and instrumental (Xin and Pearce, 1996; Leung et al., 1996) and ethical dimesions (Dunfee and Warren, 2001; Fan,2002) of guanxi. Guanxi has also been identified as one of the most important success factors in doing business in China (Yeung and Tung, 1996; Abrarnson and Ai, 1999); regarded as a source of sustainable competitive advantage (Tsang, 1998; Fock and Woo, 1998) and the glue that holds the Chinese society together (Lovett et al., 1999); linked with some western concepts such as relationship marketing (Ambler, 1994; Simmons and Munch, 1996). However, when we take guanxi as a source of competitive advantage, there are still some questions need to be answered. For example, does guanxi in general can act as a source of competitive advantage? Further, does guanxi in general is rare and imperfectly imitable? Since business guanxi is very popular in China and is very easily imitable (because it is simply built by money or quasi-money giving). Therefore, this kind of guanxi can’t act as a source of competitive advantage. This paper doesn’t take guanxi in general as a source of competitive advantage, instead, we only discuss special guanxi with governments as a source of competitive advantage. Guanxi generally refers to relationships or social connections based on mutual interests and benefits (Yang, 1994). Specifically, it refers to a special type of relationship that bonds the exchange partners through reciprocal exchange of favors and mutual obligations (Alston, 1989; Luo, 1997). The concept of guanxi is tacitly embedded within the Confucius philosophy and it subtly defines the Chinese moral code (Fock and Woo, 1998). The Confucius social hierarchical theory, i.e. the five relationships of emperor-subject, father-son, husband-wife, brother-brother and friend-friend perpetuates its influence in modern China (Yau, 1994; King, 1993; Buttery and Leung, 1998). As a result of Confucianism culture, the legal system of China is relative weak while “guanxi” between individuals is very strong. In China, guanxi begins with a “guanxi base” (Tsang, 1998) entailing either a blood relationship or some social interconnection. The latter may involve having gone to the same school, lived in the same neighborhood, belonged to the same organization and so on. The former is reflected in the tendency of Chinese in many countries to organize around family firms. Connections based on blood or kinship represent “ascribed” or inherited guanxi while other connections must be cultivated or “achieved” (Yeung and Tung, 1996).
Teaching and Learning in Internationalized MBA Programs
Dr. Linda E. Parry, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY
Dr. Robert Wharton, University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD
Many U.S. MBA programs now recruit heavily from overseas, and international students are now a major part of the student body at several schools. These students bring with them many intellectual and creative assets; along with the financial support they bring their institutions. However, they also arrive with cultural predispositions that are often quite different than those of their U.S. schoolmates and instructors. This study focuses specifically on possible differences in locus of control, tolerance for ambiguity, and work motivation. Surveying seventy-one MBA students, we find that there are differences in tolerance for ambiguity among Asian students. International students also reported less satisfaction with their MBA experience. In the early 1990s the number of graduate business schools across the U.S. grew. There were several reasons for this growth: MBA students brought in more tuition; MBA programs attracted the attention of the business and academic community; and MBA programs attracted faculty. However, as popular as the MBA became with administrators, the number of student applications began to decline. This forced universities to become more creative in their methods of attracting MBA students. At the same time there was a growing interest in globalization and preparing students for a global marketplace. Many universities began to look outside of their national or regional territories and concentrate on encouraging students from other countries to come to their institution to pursue an MBA degree. As a result, most MBA programs in the U.S. recruited a substantial number of international students. Culture is the context within which we live and work. It extends beyond individual differences, beyond family patterns, beyond organizational climate. Culture is “a set of attitudes, values, beliefs, and behaviors shared by a group of people, but different for each individual, communicated from one generation to the next” (Matsumoto, 1996, p. 16). Although modern cultures are not monolithic, there have been numerous studies that show that culture influences individual behavior and beliefs. As international students began enrolling in MBA programs in the U.S., they brought with them their diverse cultural heritage. As a result, one would anticipate that there might be learning differences among the groups. However, there have been few empirical studies that concentrate on the differences between international and U.S. students even though these differences could be important for student success. In this study we focus on three factors that have been shown to impact student learning – locus of control, tolerance for ambiguity, and work motivation. Our goal is observe if there are differences between international and U.S. graduate students and if these differences influence performance and satisfaction with their MBA program. Locus of control is a psychological construct that is used to identify if a person feels self-control over the external environment. There have been many studies conducted to measure locus of control (James, 1957; Rotter, Liverant, & Crowe, 1961). However, these measures were closely related to a need for social desirability (James, 1957). In 1966 Rotter posited that individuals have a strong internal locus of control when they perceive that a specific event has occurred as a direct result of their personal actions. Individuals with a strong external locus of control perceive that events are the result of luck, powerful others, or some other actions that have nothing to do with their own personal actions. Numerous studies have focused on the impact of locus of control and student learning. Research suggests that locus of control is an inherited trait (Miller and Rose, 1982) and is likely to be linked to differences in cerebral functioning (DeBrabander, Boone, & Gertis, 1992).
Field Research on Impacts of Some Organizational Factors on Corporate Entrepreneurship and Business Performance in the Turkish Automotive Industry
Dr. Cemal Zehir, Gebze Institute of Technology, Turkey
Dr. M. Sule Eren, Kocaeli University, Turkey
This research investigates the relationships between organizational factors (customer orientation and learning orientation), corporate entrepreneurship and business performance. Data were collected from 90 manufacturing firms operating in the automotive and automotive parts and components industry in Turkey with more than 50 employees (medium and large sized firms). The research was conducted among senior, middle level managers and white collar employees of these firms. Results indicate that learning orientation and customer orientation have positive effects on new business venturing, self renewal about the organization, and proactive dimensions of corporate entrepreneurship. On the other hand, innovativeness and new business dimensions have a positive effect on business performance. In addition to these results, there is a positive relationship between customer orientation and business performance. Since the beginning of the 1980s, due to its beneficial effect on the performance of firms, the corporate entrepreneurship concept has gained great interest from both academicians and practitioners. This interest has arisen in response to a number of pressing problems such as an increasing number of competitors, international competition and an overall desire to improve efficiency and productivity (Kuratko and Hodgetts, 1998, p. 56). Rising global and domestic competition have increased the importance of corporate entrepreneurship for successful firm performance. Corporate entrepreneurship, the sum of a company’s venturing and innovation activities, can help the firm acquire new capabilities, improve its performance, enter new businesses and develop new revenue streams in both domestic and foreign markets (Zahra et al., 2000, p. 947). In this research, in order to examine the relationships between customer orientation, learning orientation, corporate entrepreneurship and business performance, correlation and regression analyses are conducted and evaluated. Corporate entrepreneurship (entrepreneurship within existing organizations) has been of interest to scholars and practitioners for the past two decades. Corporate entrepreneurship is viewed as beneficial for the revitalization and performance of corporations, as well as for small and medium-sized enterprises (Antoncic and Hisrich, 2001, p. 495). Corporate entrepreneurship refers to ‘‘the process by which firms notice opportunities and act to creatively organize transactions between factors of production so as to create surplus value’’ (Jones and Butler, 1992, p. 735). Corporate entrepreneurial processes may exist in established organizations at any level and within any area of an organization (Liu et al., 2002, p. 370). Previous views of corporate entrepreneurship can be classified into four dimensions: 1. new business venturing, 2. innovativeness, 3. self-renewal, and 4. proactiveness. New business venturing is the most salient characteristic of corporate entrepreneurship because it can result in new business creation within an existing organization by redefining the company’s products (or services) and / or by developing new markets (Stopford and Baden-Fuller, 1994). For the new ventures dimension, emphasis is on the formation of new autonomous or semi-autonomous entities, such as units and firms (Antoncic and Hisrich, 2003, p. 18). The innovativeness dimension refers to product and service innovation with an emphasis on development and innovation in technology (Schollhammer, 1982). This dimension emphasizes the creation of new products and services (Antoncic and Hisrich, 2003).
Influencers of Exam Performance: An Empirical Replication in the Middle East
Dr. Ravi Chinta, American University of Sharjah, UAE
Evaluating and grading student performance in many collegiate business courses are done through exams. However, exam anxiety experienced by students impacts the ability of testing to measure students’ learning of course material. By replicating and expanding the scope of Burns (2004) research, this study examines the relationships between exam anxiety experienced by students at the time of the final exam and students’ performance expectations, actual performances, and the level of preparation for the final exam. Evidence was observed supporting the relationship hypothesized between test anxiety and performance expectations at the time of the final exam. Implications for managing the learning processes and future research are discussed. Based on replicating and expanding prior research done by Burns (2004), this study further explores the relationship between anxiety and performance in the Middle Eastern context. Examinations frequently represent the primary tool for evaluating students’ learning of course material in many collegiate business courses, especially those at the undergraduate level. Although other assignments, such as in-class discussions, case analyses, discussion boards on electronic Blackboard, exercises involving the Internet, service learning opportunities, and project presentations appear to be growing in use (Bacon, 2003), grades in many introductory or “principles” courses are still often based on students’ performances on a limited number of exams. With so much emphasis on the results of two to three performances, a poor grade on a single exam often has the ability to materially affect a student’s final course grade in these courses. Indeed, so important is the examination process in these courses that it is considered to be an integral component in the determination of teaching quality (Kelley, Conant & Smart, 1989). Although the reliability and validity of the examination process has received substantial research attention, the extent of the research examining problems faced by the students who take the exams has been correspondingly much less (Anderson & Sauser, 1995). Perhaps one of the most troubling problems reported by instructors relates to students who report or exhibit problems with the testing process – students who report or exhibit abnormal levels of anxiety over their performance on tests. The purpose of this study is to increase understanding of this occurrence through replication and expansion of Burns (2004) study. First, exam anxiety, or “the set of phenomenological, physiological and behavioral responses that accompany concern about possible negative consequences or failure on an exam or similar evaluative situation” (Zeidner, 1998, p. 17), will be explored. Second, anxiety experienced by students at the time of the final exam will be compared with performance expectations (expected course grade at the beginning of the course, and expected final exam performance and expected course grade at the time of the final), actual performances (actual grades on midterm exams and the final exam, and actual final course grade), and the level of preparation for the final exam (time spent studying and the number of absences from the course). Finally, implications of the findings to enhance learning processes and for future research will be discussed. Exam anxiety, as other forms of anxiety, is one of the most pervasive reactions which individuals experience (Sarason & Sarason, 1990). The transactional model of stress (the most influential contemporary stress model (Zeidner, 1998)) depicts stress as “a relationship between the person and the environment that is appraised by the person as taxing or exceeding his or her well-being” (Lazarus & Folkman, 1984, p. 21). The extent to which stress is encountered, and likewise the extent to which stress is experienced, is dependent on the degree to which the situation is viewed as emotionally threatening (Zeidner, 1998). Specifically, the threat value of a situation is determined by the personal salience of the situation, the subjective probability of negative outcomes, the imminence of the event, perceived aversiveness of the event, and the perceived unavailability of coping strategies and skills (Eysenck, 1992).
Kostas Zotos, University of Macedonia, Greece
Sports arbitrage is the best method of making money from home on your computer without selling, marketing or recruiting. Arbitrage is using the difference in markets in such a way that a risk-free profit can be guaranteed whatever the outcome of an event. In sports betting arbitrage we are taking advantage of bookmakers various opinions about the outcome of a sporting event to ensure a certain profit. In the financial markets this may involve buying a commodity or financial instrument in one market and simultaneously selling the same commodity or financial instrument at a higher price on a different market to ensure a risk-free profit. In sports we are profiting from bookmakers having different opinions about the outcome of a sporting event. This paper is a step by step sports arbitrage guide for anyone. The word arbitrage is defined by the Compact Oxford English Dictionary as "the simultaneous buying and selling of assets in different markets or in derivative forms, taking advantage of the differing prices". The simultaneous nature of the exchange is not as important as the concept of buying with the prior knowledge of being able to sell at a higher price. An example of this comes from people buying second hand good cheap from garage sales and markets because they know that the same goods are being sold for more on Internet. This kind of arbitrage is actually quite common on Internet. With the expansion of the Internet, betting on sports has globalized and the number of registered bookmakers has multiplied (Table 1 demonstrates all famous sport betting Internet sites). In many situations the experts who decide the odds on a particular sporting event are not in agreement. In other instances they offer better odds in order to attract bettors to their bookmakers. For whatever reason, disparities in odds are produced, which then allows the bettor to make a risk-free bet. Each day dozens of these arbs(arbitrages) are produced between the different bookmakers, with a benefit of between 1% and 20%. Sports betting arbitrage is not to be considered as a quick get rich scheme. Sports arbitrage is unlike traditional betting. In other words its risk free betting but an element of risk is involved in every bet no matter how safely you place your odds. This paper is to be used for informational purposes only and any investment decisions you make in future are entirely at your own risk. Our advice will be to invest money that you can afford to lose or play with. There are tons of different sportsbooks in different countries and each specializes in particular sports and is more familiar with competitors from their own local area. To compete for global business they must offer a wide range of sports from all around the world often well outside their areas of expertise. As a result many bookmakers overstretch themselves when offering odds – they try and cover every possible market to get as many customers as possible. This is mistake because in doing so they will sometimes offer odds on events that they have little or no expert knowledge in. For example, a bookmaker in the USA may know very little about English Division 2 football games, and yet offer odds on them. In contrast, an English bookmaker will be much more “clued up” as to the likely outcomes from the same games.
Moderating Effects of Age, Gender, Income and Education on Consumer’s Response to Corporate Reputation
Dr. Wei-Ming Ou, Shih Chien University, Taiwan
Demographic variables are important factors that influence shopper’s perceptions and consumer behavior. The principal objective of this research is to determine whether demographic segments, such as age, gender, income, and education, moderate the effect of corporate reputation on consumer’s store patronage behavior. An empirical research of 356 qualified supermarket consumers was conducted in the United States to investigate the moderating effects of demographic variables. The results obtained in this study assert that shopper’s demographic characteristics, namely, age, gender, income, and education, influence the relationship between retailer reputation and shopping expenditure and frequencies of store patronage. Corporate reputation is relatively stable, long-term, collective judgments by outsiders of an organization’s action, and achievements. It implies a long lasting, cumulative assessment rendered over a long time period (Gioia, Schultz and Corley, 2000; Ou, Abratt & Dion, 2006). Both academics and practitioners propose that positive corporate reputation results in business survival and profitability (Balmer, 2001; Roberts and Dowling, 2002 and Van Riel and Balmer, 1997), and is an effective mechanism to preserve or accomplish competitive advantage (Fombrun, Gardberg, and Sever, 2000; Van Riel and Balmer, 1997). One of the critical decisions confronting the shopper in interacting with the retail stores is store patronage (Nevin & Houston, 1980). Store patronage behavior strongly influences retail performance including total number of shoppers, total store visits, and average spending per shopping trip (Tang, Bell, & Ho, 2001). The principal objective of this research is to determine whether demographic segments, such as age, gender, income, and education, moderate the effect of corporate reputation on consumer’s store patronage behavior. One of the critical decisions confronting the consumer in interacting with stores concerns where to shop (Nevin & Houston, 1980). Numerous approaches have been used to determine consumer store choice behavior. Hackett, Foxall and Van Raaij (1993) reported that principal determinants of shopping behavior are: general evaluation, including safety and quality of merchandise, physical environment, efficiency, including travel distance from home, accessibility, and the social environment, including store atmosphere. Bell, Ho and Tang (1998) developed a shopping destination choice model whose fundamental principle is that each shopper is more likely to patronize the store with the lowest total shopping cost. Moreover, Baker, Parasuraman, Grewal and Voss (2002) proposed a store choice model that includes; three types of store environment cues as exogenous constructs, various store choice criteria and store patronage intentions as the endogenous construct. Corporate reputation is relatively stable, long-term, collective judgments by outsiders of an organization’s actions and achievements. It implies a lasting, cumulative assessment rendered over a long time period (Gioia, Schultz, & Corley, 2000; Ou, Abratt, & Dion, 2006). Shoppers were inclined to consume the products and services of businesses with good reputations (Balmer & Wilson, 1998), and are more loyal to those retailers who they perceived having favorable reputations (Nguyen & Leblanc, 2001). Previous research has indicated that the positive reputation associated with the retailer is one of the significant antecedents of shoppers’ intentions to purchase (Grewal, Krishnar, Baker & Borin, 1998).
Comparison of Gearing Ratio and Earnings Per Share in Two Branches: A Statistical Investigation
Dr. Paraschos Maniatis, Athens University of Economics and Business, Athens, Greece
The scope of this study is to compare the gearing ratios and the earnings per share (EPS) in two relative sectors: that of the food processing industry and the food-retailing branch. For the study we have considered firms, whose shares are quoted in the London Stock Exchange. Further, we investigate possible relationships of the above-mentioned financial ratios within and between the two branches. A set of data was obtained by taking randomly two sectors in the London stock exchange market: one consisting of 21 food-processing companies (Group B) and the other consisting of 16 food retailer firms (Group A). For the comparison we have employed the appropriate statistical tools- regression, correlation and means tests. In particular, we have adopted the following approach: -Check of the normality of the variables under consideration. This is done by the construction of the P-P plots of the variables, which is the necessary condition for the application for the parametric tests and the analysis of variance (ANOVA) techniques (part II). Application of correlation and regression techniques in order to investigate relationships between the variables. The regressions are followed by tests of significance of the regression parameters (part III). Application of nonparametric parametric techniques for testing equality of distributions and equality of means of the financial ratios (part IV). There follows discussion of the statistical findings (part V), bibliography and appendices including data, calculations and graphs. For the data presentation we have used the excel program- the most appropriate for spreadsheet tasks. For all calculation and the graphs the SPSS program has been employed. All calculation details and the graphs are shown in the appendix to this study. However, for easy reference and comparisons we have inserted the main arithmetic results and some graphs into the text. So far as the size of the samples is concerned we have used the most of the firms included in each selected branch for comparison. The selection was random in the sense that each member of the population has the same calculated chance of being selected. In our case in order to select the sample, a list was used where each to each member of the branch was given a number. Then a series of random numbers were used to select the firms to be included in the sample. The earnings per share ratio is defined as: Profits after tax available for distribution/Number of shares. The gearing ratio is defined as long-term debt/(long-term debt + equity). The linear regression analysis assumes that the residual values (observed minus predicted values) are normally distributed, and that the regression function (the relationship between the independent and dependent variables) is linear in nature. If any of these assumptions is grossly violated, then the regression coefficients (B coefficients) may be affected (inflated or deflated), and the statistical significance tests inflated or deflated. If "all is well," one can expect the residual values to be normally distributed. Normal probability plots (P-P plots) provide a quick way to visually inspect to what extent the pattern of residuals follows a normal distribution.
Financial Review of Taiwan Industrial Park Independent Operation -- Using Industrial Parks in Northern Taiwan as an Example
Dr. Li-Hsing Ho, Chung Hua University, Taiwan
Chao-Lung Hsieh, Chung Hua University,Taiwan
The industrial district development by the Taiwan government has lasted for half of the 20th century. The development was significant in creating the miracle of Taiwan economic development. However, under circumstances in which political and economic conditions change rapidly and where the government has different thoughts on public management, the past industrial district operational and managerial model that “the government operates and manages according to the related regulations” faces significant challenges. Besides, because of the difficult national financial condition and the constant deficit of industrial districts, the problem of how to upgrade the financial operation performance of industrial district managerial organizations draws the public’s attention. Since the financial executive units of the industrial district generally divide the arrangement of labor service costs into service center and industrial district sewage operational costs, and do not provide trial balance standards with regard to the cost of each business, this research adopted an Activity-Based Costing System to manage basic analysis when proceeding with the trial balance of the industrial district in the northern area of Taiwan to acquire the base of the trial balance; subsequently, the research complied with “the affairs, schedule and work divisions of institutions transformed into administrative corporations of the Organizational Transformation Committee, Executive Yuan, to proceed with a business review in order to ensure the selection of each business and the sources of funds in the future. We plan the future developing innovation service items and manage the financial trial balance according to the current business upgrading charge benefit and the core competence of industrial district managerial organizations. The synthetic financial effects will be divided into three aspects: upgrading the charge profits of the original business, increasing the profits of the innovation service charge and striving for a related fund subsidy from the government. After the trial balance, at the fifth year of the implementation of the administrative corporation system, the government should undertake about NT$150 million in agent business fees. The financial revenue structure is as follows: legal revenue (78%), governmental agent business revenue (13%) and innovative business revenue (9%). Since the government announced the “investment promotion regulation” in 1960, the large scale development of industrial districts has created the miracle of Taiwan economic development. However, in recent years, industrial district managerial organizations faced plenty of regular cost expenditures; since the firms in the industrial districts were restricted to a global competition effect and life cycle of products, some companies left for other countries or gradually dissolved. The trend affected the income of industrial district management and maintenance charges. In addition, when facing the deflation of governmental finance and budgets, industrial district developmental and managerial funds could not arrange additional budgets to respond to the needs of the industrial district managerial organization fund. The operational cost of industrial district managerial organizations was seriously influenced. The problem of how to prevent the constantly expanding financial deficit of industrial district managerial organizations, calculate the gap between industrial districts’ average managerial costs and profits or effects, and further plan the solution have become the critical issues of territory planning.
Managing an Occupational Hygiene and Safety Administrative System in Taiwan
Dr. Chou-Kang Chiu, Ching Kuo Institute of Management & Health, Taiwan
Dr. Chun-Yu Chen, Ching Kuo Institute of Management & Health, Taiwan
Dr. Luan-Ying Wei, Ching Kuo Institute of Management & Health, Taiwan
Effectively managing occupational hygiene and safety in business organizations is important today since harmful workplace agents and factors often lead to significant financial loss due to the burden on health and social security systems, to the negative impact on production, and to the associated environmental costs. To avoid potential risks and negative impacts that are caused by inefficient and ineffective business management for occupational hygiene and safety, it is critical to understand and explore business management from a perspective of occupational hygiene and safety administrative system. This research discusses the management of occupational hygiene and safety in Taiwan from the following seven perspectives, namely; (1) structure and responsibility; (2) training, knowledge and ability; (3) consultation and communication; (4) evaluation and Documentation; (5) documents and case control; (6) operational control; (7) organizational preparation and response to dramatic change. Finally, this research finishes by presenting conclusions and limitations. Work represents an influential and rewarding aspect of human life, and is also critical and indispensable for individual employees, the community, and national development (Goelzer, 1996). Nevertheless, work might be the source of considerable suffering due to carelessness resulting in workplace accidents (Peter and Siegrist, 1999). For instance, work-related musculoskeletal disorder has been one of growing issues among employees in the industrialized countries during the last three decades (Guo, Chang, Yeh, Chen, and Guo, 2004; Lee, Yeh, Chen and Wang, 2005). These disorders are likely to generate considerable human suffering and result in decreased production and a lower work capacity (Lee et al., 2005; Theorell and Karasek, 1996). In the meantime, harmful workplace agents and factors often lead to appreciable financial loss due to the burden on health and social security systems, to the negative impact on production, and to the associated environmental costs (Goelzer, 1996). Working professionals and employees are not supposed to endure the workplace accidents, and countries should not afford the associated damage. Thus, it is crucial to effectively manage occupational hygiene and safety from a business management perspective to prevent unnecessary occupational risks. Effective occupational hygiene and safety management represents a process of safeguarding employees by continuously making right decisions (Toffel and Birkner, 2002). Albeit Taiwan has gone through a dramatic transformation over the last three decades, from an agriculture-based economy towards high-tech and service industries, injuries resulting in permanent disability are still high compared with other developed countries (Lee et al., 2005; Karasek, Brisson, Kawakami, Houtman, Bongers and Amick, 1998). Restated, Taiwan is facing some challenges, such as considerably high rates of occupational injuries and diseases.
Marketing and Marketing Managers in the New Era: A Relational Perspective
Dr. Osman Gok, Yasar University, Izmir, Turkey
Contemporary research in industrial and services marketing indicates that a relational approach to marketing is required. These two streams of contemporary research have resulted long-term relationship recognition as key to competitive strength. Proposed new faces of marketing have changed its role and influenced the relationship between the theory and marketing as a management task. Marketing managers in the new era must understand a broader perspective of marketing. S/he will be an integrator, organizer, master of information and most importantly, a relationship manager. This paper’s contribution to the field is its comprehensive up-to-date review of the managerial issues in today’s marketing domain. Since the 1960s, the marketing mix approach, with its 4P model, has dominated the marketing theory and practice. The model has been so widely accepted among academics and practitioners that it is called a model of marketing only. It has been assumed that the marketing lead taken by Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) manufacturers is relevant and wholly transferable to other industries and should set the precedent for those that follow in their wake (Denison and McDonald, 1995). This assumption is now being questioned, particularly in light of growing interest on long-term oriented buyer-seller relationships in industrial markets and emerging unique aspects of service marketing. Proposed new faces of marketing have suggested a change in the role of marketing and influenced the relationship between theory and marketing as a management task. A functionalistic approach to marketing which is a consequence of 4P philosophy is also under debate. Marketing has long been defined as the integrated analysis, planning, and control of the marketing mix variables (product, price, place, promotion) to create exchange and satisfy both individual and organizational objectives. The traditional marketing approach, sometimes referred to as a conventional or classical marketing (Ahmad and Buttle 2001, p.30), requires that firms should first determine customers’ needs and wants. Customers should be organized into market segments for which firms should develop products. Firms should then organize their functional activities in order to satisfy these targeted segments. Marketers, in turn, assume that they can exert unilateral control over customers through timely manipulations of the '4Ps' or other elements of the marketing mix, particularly by using financial rewards such as price discounts, gifts and promotions. However, a number of authors (e.g. Hakansson 1982; Gummesson 1997; Grönroos 1996, 1997, 2004; Payne 1995, p.30; Christopher et al. 1991, p.8; Bennett 1996; Aijo 1996; Brodie et al. 1997; and Ahmad and Buttle 2001) consider this definition, based on marketing mix, to be irrelevant, not only for industrial and service, but also for consumer markets. They argue that, the generally accepted definition of marketing is largely based on short-term transactions and product oriented. These debates on traditional marketing approach emerged from mainly two streams of research. Contemporary research into industrial and services marketing suggested that a relational approach to marketing is required. The first stream came in the late 1970s with the “interaction/network approach” as proposed by the Industrial Marketing and Purchasing (IMP) Group.
Transnational Corporations’ R&D Localization in a Developing Nation – A Game Theory Analysis
Dr. Chen-kuo Lee, Ling Tung University, Taiwan, R.O.C.
Tzu-yun Chang, Ling Tung University, Taiwan, R.O.C.
In the traditional theoretical analysis of transitional corporations’ R&D, developing nations are not considered an internal decision subject. Instead, developing nations’ characteristics are predetermined and included in the framework as a restriction for the transnational corporation’s investment decisions. Apparently, traditional theories concentrate on investors’ behaviors and are short of the analysis on developing nations’ behavior mechanisms and characteristics. Therefore, traditional theories are not sufficient for the authors’ theoretical requirements. By making use of game theory, this study has developed a theoretical framework based upon the creation and distribution of the benefits derived from the investment in connection with the transnational corporations’ R&D localization, and has thus interpreted developing nations’ foreign investment policy and results effectively, and has also formulated the rules regarding the transnational corporations’ R&D localization investors and investment behaviors, as well as the developing nations’ investment behaviors and the related interactions, thereby creating a comprehensive transnational corporation’s investment theory. As the globalization process accelerated and international competition grew fiercer than ever in the late 1990s, more and more transnational corporations adjusted their strategies accordingly—from technical resource allocation worldwide to global strategic administration. Apparently, transnational corporations have adjusted their global development strategies from market globalization and production globalization to technique globalization and R&D globalization (Reddy, 2000; Amsden, Tschang & Goto, 2001). Actually, international competition nowadays entails technical capabilities and technical innovation as core competency. In this connection, the ability to develop new techniques faster than competitors, and to apply new techniques to new products, are the highlights of competition (Barry, *2005). At the time that R&D costs and risks increase and hi-tech products’ life cycles decrease, more and more international corporations have understood that techniques are extremely important in terms of international competition advantages and, most importantly, that no corporation can obtain all techniques internally (Guellec et al., 2001) R&D localization refers to a transnational corporation’s transfer of R&D activities to its subsidiary outside home country and participation in R&D activities by home country’s resources. R&D is localized in two methods: (1) to establish an R&D branch in the subsidiary’s host country; (2) to take part in R&D activities in cooperation with the universities or research institutes located in the subsidiary’s host country. The first method works best and is the most important R&D localization method. In the last ten years, a number of transnational corporations have taken the developing nations’ manpower strength, technological capabilities, and scientific fundamental advantages into consideration and have established research institutes around the world to undertake the R&D tasks related to new technology and new products, thereby accelerating R&D globalization process (Reddy, 2000; Von Zedtwitz, Gassmann and Boutellier, 2004). As far as R&D globalization is concerned, the transnational corporations’ overseas R&D institutes play the most critical role (Barry, 2005). In the conventional sense, R&D is considered the core activity that is often undertaken domestically.
Recent Lessons from Turkey’s Experiences with State Owned Banks After the Banking Crisis of 2001
Dr. Ilhan Uludag, Professor, Kadir Has University, Istanbul, Turkey
This article examines the state banking share at the regional level and internationally as a result of privatization and nationalization within the banking system. The study also examines the changes the state’s share of banking has undergone over time, as well as the relationship between financial crises and privatization in the banking sector to determine whether it is beneficial to take shares of state banks within the sector to the world average level, in terms of ensuring that the financial system works in a more efficient and competitive manner, and also discusses increasing the performance of the banks to be privatized, to ensure superior financial systems performance. State Banks - which have successfully provided for consumer banking needs as well as the development and industrialization requirements for years – have been recently supplanted by private sector banks as a result of privatization that occurred in conjunction with the effect of the free market economy of the 1980’s and capitalism. Major transitional factors affecting the move from state banks to private ones can be stated as the state bank’s finalized role within the economy being, their activities diverse from main banking. In addition, state banks have begun to declare large losses as a result of being used by governments to exercise their political and populist power, which leads to damage to the financial system’s reputation. In total, these factors combine to create state banking’s damage to the overall financial sector. For developing countries in particular, despite privatizations that have occurred over the last 25 years, state banks still play an important and dominant role within the banking sector- . In these countries, state bank’s share in the overall sector is still relatively high. As a result of international globalization and the effects of crises based upon them, countries are obliged to follow the economic and financial developments of every country. Considering the matter from Turkey’s point of view, one can see that state banks that had been founded due to economic requirements similar to those of other countries and the lack of expertise in the private sector, have contributed to the economic developments of the country and have lead its financial systems for some time. Parallel to this, in similar countries, problems have occurred in the state banks. Based upon these problems, a restructuring program had been applied in the state banks, and by year 2001, the positive outcomes of the program had lead to increased performance and profitability. Despite privatizations over the last 25 years, state banks still dominate the banking sectors of developing countries. When we analyze worldwide the state banks’ market share in various regions, we can see differences in large asset share within assets of the banking sector. According to 2003 data, worldwide asset share according to regions and countries, is stated as in Table 1. Despite primary privatizations in many Latin American developing counties and in few African economies, state banks still maintain their dominant role in the banking sectors of most developing economies. However, the microeconomic performance of state banks is weak. International research has determined that economic and financial development in countries with large scale state banks is slower than in others. (Hanson, 2004)
Governance Choices for External Technology Sourcing: Taiwanese Firms in Global High-Tech Industries
Wiboon Kittilaksanawong, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan
This paper discusses the governance choices of firms in high-tech industries that seek technological know-how externally. While much of the early study adopted transaction cost economics to determine the governance choices, this study takes into account the importance of social relationships. Taiwanese firms entering into the global high-tech strategic alliances between 2000 and 2006 were employed as the research context. The results indicate that these firms are likely to adopt the governance choices based on the relational perspective. Specifically, Taiwanese firms possessing higher degree of centrality as measured by degree, closeness, and eigenvector and occupying more structural-hole positions as measured by effective size and efficiency in their industry networks are likely to form a less hierarchical form of governance such as contractual agreement or other non-equity strategic alliances. There is also an indication that these governance choices are influenced by the institution being passed on to the alliances from countries to countries. These challenges are discussed and proposed as an opportunity for the future research. Firms in high-tech industries mostly compete with each other intensely as they must constantly invest in the creation of new technological capabilities that are different from their competitors to create sustainable performance (Leonard-Barton, 1994). To accelerate the innovative capabilities internally, however is barely or even no longer sufficient to cope with the increasing cost, speed, and complexity of technological development in the high-tech industries (Cohen and Levinthal, 1990; Gomes-Casseres, 1989; Harrison, Hitt, Hoskisson, and Ireland, 2001; Lambe and Spekman, 1997; Teece, 1992). Importantly, as technological know-how is tacit and embedded in nature and could not be inspected without the risk of attenuation of property rights (Das, Sen, and Sengupta, 1998) or transmitted easily from one firm to another (Larsson, Bengtsson, Henriksson, and Sparks, 1998), the market for it is inefficient. Therefore, a firm may decide to gain access to such technological know-how through an acquisition of another firm in which the technology is embedded, or through a strategic alliance in which the know-how and assets of both firms are combined in a certain degree (Doz, 1996; Hamel, 1991; Kogut, 1988; Mowery, Oxley, and Silverman, 1996; Stuart, 2000; Young-Ybarra and Wiersema, 1999). Earlier studies of governance choices were mostly informed by the logic of transaction cost economics (Hennart, 1988; Pisano, 1989; Pisano, Russo, and Teece, 1988) which suggests that transaction costs determine the structure of alliances. These studies however, have been criticized because they did not take into account the importance of social relationships in mitigating transaction costs. Particularly, they undermine how embeddedness of firms in the network of relationships engenders trust that reduces transaction costs and in turn, influences alternative forms of governance. This paper therefore, contributes to the literature by considering such governance choices specifically, between equity and non-equity (or contractual) strategic alliances of firms in high-tech industries that seek technological know-how externally concurrently from both relational and transactional perspectives.
Analytic Hierarchy Process: An Approach for Determining the Collection Strategy
Yuh-Neu Chiang, Hsing Wu College, Taiwan
Yung-Chun Lin, Hsing Wu College, Taiwan
Su-Hsiu Lin, Hsing Wu College, Taiwan
Taiwan is an island with scarce resources; it depends heavily on international trade. Among international trade practices, accounts settlement is the most important one. This paper introduces the analytic hierarchy process to solve a decision-making problem with two advantages. (1) It adopts the pair-wise comparison process by comparing two criteria at one time to formulate the weights of those criteria. (2) It uses a consistency test to ensure logical judgments. Finally, we suggest a formula for the SMEs in Taiwan to measure the scores of four alternatives of payment collection: letter of credit, collection (D/P,D/A),T/T, and open account. The international economic environment is changing all the time. Since Taiwan was acceded to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2002, Taiwanese industries have had to face increasingly fierce competition from global corporations. Globalization and liberalization are now at the heart of the global economy. The trend towards globalization has created major challenges for Taiwan’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs). This is making it more and more difficult for SMEs to manage and grow their existing business. The number of SMEs as a proportion of all businesses remains at an average of over 97% in Taiwan with an annual export values of over NT$130 trillion (white paper 2005). The employment and the number of employees on the payroll exceeded 77% and 68% respectively. In relation to the social stability and protection of people’s livelihood, SMEs indeed contribute to a great degree. Though Taiwan is famous for its high-tech products, e.g. IT products, the amount of production in traditional industries (manufacturers) still accounts for about 70% of the total production (Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics, Executive Yuan). In recent years, however, both the growth rate and export rate of the amount of production for the traditional industries (especially for those labor intensive manufacturers) are decreasing in comparison with those of large enterprises for many reasons. First, large enterprises have performed better than SMEs because many of them are multinational corporations. Second, many of Taiwan’s large manufacturers export electric and electronic products, which are high value-added products. Third, most SMEs are composed of traditional industries. Many of them have established their factories overseas due to the high costs. There has been no slowdown in outward investment from Taiwan (especially to Mainland China). It is not easy to keep track of their every export order. In the past few years, Taiwan’s investment in Mainland China has surpassed its total investment in other countries, accounting for nearly 70% of the total outward investment (white paper 2005). Among these investing corporations, most of them are labor-intensive manufacturers. Though they have set up their factories and manufactured products overseas, they hold the main functions in Taiwan, e.g. R&D, procurement and payment collecting. As a result, the triangular trade between Taiwan and Mainland China is more thriving than ever. The international economic environment has gone through an enormous change attributable to the trade globalization and liberalization, greater efficiency and facility of high technology, and the boundless and comprehensive accessibility of the Internet. This has made international trade more expedient. An international trade usually begins with the establishment of business relationships and ends with the settlement of payments. Among those international trade practices, accounts settlement is the most important one of all.
Assessing Knowledge Management System Success: An Empirical Study in Taiwan’s High-Tech Industry
Chung-Hung Tsai, Tzu Chi College of Technology, Taiwan
Hwang-Yeh Chen, National Dong Hwa University, Taiwan
Effective knowledge management is the foundation for organizations to stay competitive. The knowledge management system (KMS) plays a key role in facilitating knowledge management process in term of knowledge creation, storage, transfer, and application, particularly in high-tech industry. The purpose of this study is to develop a KMS success model primarily built on DeLone and McLean’s updated information systems success model (2003) and trust theory by assessing the impact of system quality, information quality, service quality, and trust on system use and user satisfaction, leading to the individual performance change. An empirical study will be conducted to examine proposed hypotheses and model using SEM from a selection of Taiwan’s high-tech companies. By including the factor of trust in KMS success model, the proposed model extends beyond traditional IT-based view of knowledge management systems, and can provide academics and practitioners with better assessment of KMS success. As the society enters into the knowledge-based economy, effective knowledge management is essential for organization to stay competitive. Knowledge management (KM) is widely recognized by both academics and practitioners for its increasing importance in gaining organizational competitive advantage (Sambamurthy and Subramani, 2005). Knowledge is considered as an extension of information in that knowledge is embedded with context (Gallupe, 2001). Because knowledge-based resources are embedded in multiple entities of organizations, i.e. organizational culture, routines, policies, systems and documents, as well as employees, and are usually difficult to imitate with social complexity, these knowledge assets may generate long-term sustainable competitive advantage (Alavi and Leidner, 2001). Specifically, high-tech companies are characterized by high level of intellectual work and have a majority of assets linked to intellectual human assets (Rogers, 2001). The key to knowledge management is to capture intellectual assets and help employees better perform their work for the benefit of organization. The IT-enabled knowledge management systems (KMS) can play a key role in helping organizations manage knowledge in more effective and efficient way. Although early work in information systems research primarily focuses on the design of KMS, the ‘soft’ or ‘social’ aspect demands equal attention. Sambamurthy and Subramani (2005) indicates there is increasing realization that technical and social processes may interact in complementarities to shape knowledge management efforts. Structuring people, technology and knowledge content is required for KM projects or initiatives to achieve organizational objectives (Davenport, Long and Beers, 1998). Organizations must take into consideration of social factors to ensure success when designing and implementing KMS. Alavi and Leidner (2001) raise the research question on how trust can be developed to enhance individual’s use of knowledge in a KMS. However, social factors in determining KMS success have not been fully explored and examined in information systems and knowledge management research. Since knowledge management is still a young discipline, there is lack of accepted integrative model considering technological and social elements to measure the success of KMS implementation. The purpose of this study is to develop a KMS success model mainly built on DeLone and McLean’s updated information system success model (2003) and trust theory by assessing the impact of system quality, information quality, service quality and trust on system use and user satisfaction, leading to the individual performance change. An empirical study will be conducted to examine proposed hypotheses and model using SEM from a selection of Taiwan’s high-tech companies.
Transforming Perspectives on Health Care: Outcomes of a Management Education Program for Physicians
Dr. John P. Conbere, University of St. Thomas, Minneapolis, MN
Dr. Sharon K. Gibson, University of St. Thomas, Minneapolis, MN
This article reports on the outcomes of a management education (Mini MBA®) program for physicians in a large health care system based in South Dakota. The organization’s objective for this education program was to assist their physicians in becoming better leaders in health care. 103 physicians were enrolled in the program in three cohort groups. Notably, the instructional methods employed in this program differed significantly from the traditional continuing medical education that physicians generally attend. Using a qualitative case study methodology, three major themes emerged from the study with respect to the physician’s perceived outcomes. First, physicians reported that the development of business acumen influenced their ability to participate in health care decisions. Second, physicians perceived that their increased openness to new ideas impacted the way in which they interacted with hospital administrators, peers, and staff. Third, a sense of intimacy among physicians as they shared professional and personal experiences served to alleviate a sense of isolation. Moreover, these outcomes were seen in the context of their work, families, and communities. Avera Health, a large Catholic health care system based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, was interested in providing its physicians with continuing education on the various factors that influence the success of health care. Their strategy was to use continuing medical education (CME) in the form of a Mini MBA® program created by the Center for Health and Medical Affairs at the University of St. Thomas, Minneapolis, Minnesota. This management education program differed significantly in structure of content and learning process from the traditionally didactic lecture format of most CME programs. This article reports on the individual and organizational outcomes of the Mini MBA® as perceived by the physicians who attended this program, and lends insight into the impact of this type of education on physicians’ work, families, and communities. Generally, most continuing education for physicians is focused on maintaining their ability to practice in their area of medical specialty or to keep current on new medical developments. Therefore, the basis for most education taken by physicians is content-focused. For example, Holmer (2001) found that 81% of physicians identified meeting state-based licensure requirements as their reason for participating in CME, while 41% of physicians stated that keeping up-to-date on medical developments was their objective. In addition, the typical CME involves a didactic lecture format and active physician involvement is kept to a minimum (Felch & Scanlon, 1997). This tends to parallel the instructional methods that have been traditionally found in medical schools. Thus, traditional CME, similar to their prior educational experiences, has tended to be a rather passive event for physicians. However, some have argued that the goal of CME is changing physician performance or outcomes and that traditional CME lecture fails to lead to change (O’Brien, 1999; Richards, 1988). Researchers have had limited success in demonstrating that the standard didactic approach works (Felch & Scanlon, 1997). In a study of the effectiveness of didactic, interactive, and mixed educational styles, the results showed that didactic CME had no effect on physician performance, and that other approaches, which included case discussion, role-play, or hands-on practice sessions, had a significant impact on physician behavior (Davis, O’Brien, Freemantle, Wolf, Mazmanian, & Taylor-Vaisey, 1999). Three developments are changing the standard style of CME (Felch & Scanlon, 1997).
Using Assessments Tasks to Shift Focus to Learning Rather than Evaluating Students
Shameem Ali, Victoria University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Dr. Henry W. L. Ho, Victoria University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
This paper investigates students working on cases analysis as part of the summative assessment in an undergraduate marketing subject with the aim of developing student’s analytical, strategic thinking, problem solving skills and knowledge of marketing principles. The results indicated that a large majority of students preferred working on the analysis of the cases given as their assignments and perceived getting a high grade on these assignments. Overall students found case analysis to be more rewarding than other forms of assessment. These findings have several implications for the design of assessable assignments which take into account the general student tendency to avoid deeper learning in preference to surface learning that only reaches minimum standards. The paper suggests that a combination of varied forms of assessment is appropriate if greater and deeper learning is to be achieved. Educators have said that they never really learned a subject until they had to teach it themselves (Carlson and Schodt, 1995). This refers to the understanding of the content, which is the prime focus of many teachers, both within the secondary school and university systems. Today’s students have unlimited access to information and the modern challenge facing teachers is motivating students to engage with the subject. A frequently heard complaint about education today is that it does not teach students to think. The purpose of tertiary education should be to provide an opportunity for students to acquire and process knowledge. Unfortunately, all too often the emphasis is upon memorization of, rather than processing of, information (Bolton, 1996). According to Drea, Tripp and Stuenkel (2005), students learn best when the educators successfully create an active learning environment. To help marketing students learn to “think like marketers”, marketing educators need to consider seriously ways of moving beyond the traditional modes of instruction. The case study analysis method is on technique for doing this. As Case studies are tools that are widely used in tertiary education, it takes time to learn how to get the most out of them for both educators and for their students. Ideally, case studies are intended to help students make relevant connections among course materials; transforming course materials from opaque language or ideas into something students can integrate into their own long-term memory and knowledge bank (Grosse, 1988; and Hancock, 1993). This paper investigates students working on cases analysis as part of the summative assessment in an undergraduate marketing subject with the aim of developing student’s analytical, strategic thinking, problem solving skills and knowledge of marketing principles. Making judgments of student competency and the evaluation of their learning are complex matters, especially in a semester timeframe. This paper examines students’ perception as to whether the analysis and problem solving of the case study contributed to their learning. It evaluates students’ perception of the value of case study analysis and problem solving as part of the assessment. The results show that students’ perceived the case study analysis and problem solving exercise as contributing to their learning and that they benefited from seeing a problem examined from different perspectives. Summative assessment is comprehensive in nature, provides accountability and is used to check the level of learning at the end of the program (Angelo and Cross, 1993).
Congruence/Incongruence Perception of Product Strategy and Business Performance: By Contrasting Organizations and Consumers from Taiwanese Telecommunications Industry
Chi-Jyun Cheng, The University of Birmingham, UK
Dr. Shuling Liao, Yuan-Ze University, Taiwan
Within competitive telecommunications industry, organizations usually come up with their product strategies in a short time, especially these strategies are mostly based on their working experience. However, organizations may recognize their product strategies in one way but customers may perceive them another. With data collected in Taiwanese telecommunications industry and consumers, namely 132 practitioners and 554 consumers, this study contributes to the body of knowledge by empirically contrasting the perception of product strategy between organizations and consumers and their effect on the business performance. The results of the study reveal that organizations with better consistency of customers’ perceptions of product strategy should benefit from a higher level of business performance. The implications of the study are presented from both the academics and managerial perspectives. Against the background of a global economy, a program of privatization has been widely employed by governments regardless of developed or developing countries. Of the privatized cases, telecommunications would be a typical one (Wymbs 2002). For example, in the last decade, telecommunications industry has been one of the most spectacular growths in globalization (Sarkar et al. 1999) while it also has become the most competitive in the world (Turnbull and Leek 2000). Within such a competitive environment, exclusive product strategies have to be emerged in a short time. Hence, practitioners are forced to shortly come up with product strategies. Under this circumstance, practitioners would encounter a problem: they see their own product strategies in one way but customers perceive them in another. For example, organizations perceptively assume their product strategies are able to meet customers’ needs, but customers do not. As a result, the organizations might have a major problem with losing customers. Even worse, this inconsistent perception between organizations and customers might lead to poor business performance (Langerak 2001) if organizations ignore it as a problem or do not act upon it. On the other hand, if these two groups have similar perception, this congruence could be regarded as strength for organizations. Previous research has suggested that this inconsistent perception can be examined by different gap analyses (Brown and Swartz 1989; Brennan and Gallagher 2002; Headley and Choi 1992; Kwan and Hee 1994; Min and Min 1996), but it is surprising that most studies of gap analysis are dealing with the same group’s perception (Clow and Vorhies 1993; Gagliano and Hathcote 1994; Kwan and Hee 1994; Sultan and Simpson 2000) and so little research has addressed the problem of inconsistent perception between organizations and customers (Bitner et al. 1990; Callan and Lefebve 1997; Samli et al. 1998). In addition, research on gap analyses focuses mostly on how to discover the gaps but rarely on how to deal with these gaps if they exist. What is more, research on gap analysis has done little to reveal the effect of product strategy on business performance based on comparing the perception of organizations and customers. Therefore, this research has four objectives. First, within telecommunications industry, the consistent/inconsistent perceptions of product strategy between organizations and consumers will be realized by a gap analysis. Second, the relationships between the consistent/inconsistent perceptions and the level of business performance will be tested through empirical data.
Pre-Assessment of Data Collection Procedures: Planning to Fail by Failing to Plan
Dr. John Knight, University of Tennessee at Martin, Martin, TN
Dr. Daniel Tracy, University of Tennessee at Martin, Martin, TN
Prior to making major decisions, managers sometimes instruct analysts to collect and to research some readily available databases for clues as to how relevant statistical data might impact any decisions to be made. Without a readily available database, managers might authorize the collection and analysis of data that might provide insight into a more probabilistically logical solution to the problem. In either case, management should be intricately involved with the pre-assessment process of the data variables so that the analysis will have positive impact on the decision-making outcomes. Management must insure that pre-assessment of data is thorough. Why? Management must recognize that the origins of potential problems come from different places and the omission of any significant causes and effects will obviously impact the analysis. Further, management should understand that good statistical analysis is expensive in both time and actual costs. Spending excessive time and money on the collection of poor or inappropriate data is a fruitless and sometimes even deceiving problem sometimes seen in numerical analysis. Finally, management must emphasize that without their prior agreement on appropriate operational variable definition and suitable measurement techniques and methodologies, conclusions may be dismissed if they are contrary to any preconceived plans or agendas. Management must insist that important technical pre-assessment activities are incorporated into the process. Any data collected needs to have appropriate accuracy and precision. Methods for selecting the appropriate levels of accuracy and precision for different stimulus versus response variables needs to be incorporated. The data collection method should be pre-tested and evaluated for problems – including difficulty of collection and measurement, incapability of obtaining representative data, and potential sampling error. Finally appropriate sample collection procedures need to be established, individuals trained, and sample sizes established. Without appropriate pre-assessment of the collection of statistical data for managerial decision-making, the potential rewards of such analysis will seldom be fully realized. This is demonstrated through an illustrative case study. When management attempts to employ statistics to define and analyze a problem prior to making a major managerial policy decision, a significant commitment to the development of a relevant database is simultaneously being made. The collection of data often takes an extensive amount of time and effort resulting in data collection costs having a significant impact on the analysis. In some cases, an existing database can be referenced and analyzed for a relatively minor cost. However, in most cases the existing database is only tangentially related to the specific problem at hand and will thus only provide tangentially related answers to the problem (Knight, 1999). In most cases where statistics are to be utilized, a decision to collect data will involve a commitment to significant sums of employee data collection time, actual costs of collecting data (for example, destructive testing even involves the cost of lost material), and decreased productivity time due to experimental results being interlaced with normal production procedures. In addition to these costs, significant amounts of statistical analysis time, effort, and report writing will be implied when utilizing statistics in the decision making process. In these cases management must be more than vaguely familiar with the concept of “garbage in-garbage out” when data are to be analyzed.
Market Reaction to Accounting Regulatory Changes: Adoption of SFAS 142
Dr. Stephen C. Gara, Drake University, Des Moines, IA
This study examines the market reaction following announcements from the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) that it intended to eliminate the requirement to amortize purchased goodwill (SFAS 142). SFAS 142 altered the long-standing treatment for purchased goodwill, ratable amortization, and replaced it with impairment testing. Consequently, reported earnings are no longer subject to the drag of amortization expense. While goodwill is still recognized and capitalized, it is now subject to annual impairment testing, potentially requiring large, but infrequent, write-downs of goodwill value. The rationale for the change was three-fold: to improve the quality of reported earnings, increase the comparability of U.S. accounting principles with those of other industrialized nations, and to mitigate the elimination of the pooling method for acquisition reporting. However, criticisms of SFAS 142 have been raised as well. The overall research question to be answered by this study is whether investors and other market participants consider the elimination of goodwill amortization to be a positive event, as evidenced by their changing assessment of firm value. An event study methodology is used to examine the market reaction associated with the adoption of SFAS 142 by the FASB, including the association between market reaction and the magnitude of reported goodwill. Additionally, consistent with Myring et. al. (2003), the debt contracting and political cost hypotheses are examined as contributors to the market’s reaction to SFAS 142. While, a negative reaction is found surrounding the FASB’s originals proposal shortening the goodwill amortization period from 40 to 20 years. The overall results indicate a positive market reaction for the initial event dates surrounding the FASB’s decision to eliminate amortization and impose impairment testing instead, though no significant reaction was found for the final vote by the FASB implementing SFAS 142. Finally, the reaction was generally positively associated with the reported level of goodwill. The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued Statement of Financial Accounting Standards (SFAS) 142 in July 2001, drastically changing the financial reporting of goodwill. Goodwill is measured as the excess of the business acquisition price over the fair market value of a target firm’s identifiable net assets, and often comprises the single largest portion of the purchase price. Essentially, goodwill is based on the premise that the whole is greater than the sum of a firm’s parts (assets). It represents target value not otherwise disclosed on its balance sheet. For example, 90 percent of Philip Morris’ $13 billion acquisition of Kraft as allocated to goodwill (Gara and Karim 2000). As of 2003, Standard and Poor’s 500 firms have $1.3 trillion in goodwill reported on their books, making it the single largest recorded intangible asset (Churyk 2004). Furthermore, the transitioning of the U.S. economic base from manufacturing to services has only increased the role and significance of intangibles such as goodwill (Henning et. al. 2000). The accounting treatment of goodwill has experienced a long turbulent history. The very nature of goodwill as a residual intangible asset makes the accounting for it difficult. Prior to 2001, the governing rules for goodwill were provided by Accounting Principles Board Opinion No. 17, Intangible Assets (APB 17) (APB 1970). APB 17 provided that acquired goodwill was initially recognized as an asset on the acquirer’s books. Subsequently, goodwill was systematically amortized over its estimated useful life, up to a maximum of 40 years. Consequently, an acquirer’s future reported earnings were dragged down by amortization expense.
The Relationship between Electronic Business Process Reengineering and Organizational Performance in Taiwan
David W-S. Tai, National Changhua University of Education, Taiwan
C-E Huang, National Changhua University of Education, Taiwan
With the advent of free, open and globalized economic development, industries are confronted by more competitors in both domestic and international markets. Under this dynamic environment, the traditional labor-intensive industries in Taiwan are losing their global competitive advantage. This research investigated the top 850 of Taiwan’s enterprises in order to examine the relationship between internal and external environmental changes in the industry. Data from 103 industries revealed that, the more flexible a company is in its industrial environment, the better its chances of being able to reconstruct itself by applying information technology and operational procedures; when corporations’ internal and external environments change, a company must also adjust its processing activity to improve its organizational performance. Finally, this research found that manufacturing industries are more focused on the application of information technology than are other industries because of the need to reduce the reaction time to customer complaints, the response to mistakes response, and shorten the manufacturing life-cycle of productions and services. Business reengineering has been a central issue among corporations since Hammer (1990) first presented the concept. Business reengineering provides a way for manufacturers to effectively respond to the challenge of changing environments. Since its objectives and methods are applicable to a wide range of industries, many companies consider business reengineering as the means by which to achieve industrial competitiveness (Bradley & Rosenzweig, 1992) Information Technology (IT) applications play a crucial role in the process of business reengineering; computers, applied software, and Internet technology help organizations become more flexible and more responsive and to provides quality products or services. IT can decrease or substitute for human resources, thus increasing production efficiency and promoting more sound internal working processes. It can also combine with other functions to make a succession of processes work well. , Since IT has contributed so strongly to business effectiveness, electronic business process reengineering has become an important new trend in the face of increasing competitive pressures. This research includes literature reviews and empirical studies with the purpose of examining how organizations adjust electronic-business process reengineering while faced with the pressure of changing environments and industrial upgrades. The research summarizes concrete and suggestions objectively that will help business process reengineering work. The objectives of this research are: (1) to examine business process reengineering in Taiwan, (2) to examine the obstacles confronted during the process of business reengineering, and (3) to determine the relationship among the administrative environment, business reengineering and organizational performance. Xie (1980) considered the industrial environment to be an uncontrollable factor for a company, whether it comes from inside or outside the organization.
The Market Innovative Acceptance Framework for High-Tech Firms: An Example of Ultrasonic Cleaning Equipment
Jung Huang, Minghsin University of Science and Technology, Taiwan
Dr. Chih-Hung Wu, Takming College, Taiwan
Wen-Ta Hsu, Chung Hua University, Taiwan
The purpose of this study is to propose a market innovative acceptance framework for high-tech firm accepting the innovated technology of ultrasonic cleaning equipment. The study focuses on the identification of the local businesses with the equipment and a survey was made to investigate how the equipment is accepted in the market. We target local hi-tech businesses having clean rooms (class≦10000) and extract the constructs influencing the acceptance in the market by Delphi Method and through Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP), we calculate the relative weighting of each construct and principles to explore the future development of ultrasonic cleaning equipment. From our research, we found that two elements—government policies and publicity are the keys for local hi-tech businesses in selecting the ultrasonic cleaning equipment. Therefore it is suggested that manufacturers, when promoting the ultrasonic cleaning equipment, combine with the government publicity and regulations while enhancing the stability and quality of the equipment so that consumers can identify with the cleaning level after using the equipment. In the meantime, the study also predicts the future requirements and trend of the ultrasonic cleaning equipment and we believe there will be great market requirements with business opportunities. In hi-tech industries, the cost of filter nets used in clean rooms is disproportionately low when comparing to the total operating costs. Filter nets, however, play a crucial role in determining whether the plant can bring off a successful process and in affecting the defective rate. IC Fabs of the semiconductor industry, for example, demands highly the capacity of filter nets in clean rooms to rid themselves of contamination particles, to the purpose that the clean rooms can achieve a prescribed standard and attain a high-quality process control. In Taiwan, the filter nets of clean rooms are now all of disposable type, discarded and replaced by new ones after being used. Although this practice assures the quality of the products, the ever increasing waste filter nets cannot be decomposed in landfills on one hand, and they, when incinerated, block fire grids and generate dioxin on the other hand, consequentially increasing social costs. Owing to the raging tide of environment protection, green consumption becomes the norm. Enterprises make the goal of sustainable development attainable by both decreasing the devastation of environment and taking on an image of a green enterprise. A Japan company, of late, utilizing the ultrasound technique, devised cleaning equipment for filter nets, which can be applied to the recycling processes of clean-room filter nets in hi-tech plants. Cleansed by this ultrasound cleaning equipment, filter net can restore its function without sacrificing the requirement of the clean room. Accordingly, in addition to reducing the procurement costs, this equipment lessens the amount of waste as well as social costs, making it environment-friendly and cost-effective.
Comprehensive Income and Holding Gains and Losses: Evidence from a Pilot Empirical Research on Italian Corporations
Dr. Marco Maffei, Università di Napoli “Federico II”, Italy
The starting point of this research comes from the decision of the European Union to compel listed companies to prepare their financial statements in accordance with the IFRS. Consequently, there is the need of understanding the present and potential ability of international accounting standards to effectively modify and improve the true and fair representation of financial position and performance of domestic corporations. Thus, the aim of the paper is to test a statistical methodology, which is capable to appreciate the level of diversity between the Italian and international measures of income. Specially, the work focuses on the concept of comprehensive income (consistent with items included both in net income and in equity) and it investigates if the accounting treatment of holding gains and losses under IFRS involves a substantial modification of the income measurement respect of the Italian practice. This analysis is accompanied with a pilot empirical research conducted on a sample of Italian listed companies. It has been verified that the examined companies have presented just a few items in equity. Moreover, the holding gains and losses comprised in net income (with regard to the limits related to the IFRS first-time adoption) are not so heavy. Effective for fiscal year 2004, in Italy two different accounting standards are cohabiting: the OIC standards (OIC is the acronym of Organismo Italiano di Contabilità, which is the Italian standards setter) and the International Financial Reporting Standards. The OIC allows the determination of the traditional net income, inspired by the transaction-based model, despite being affected by a rigid and slow-to-change civil law. Notwithstanding, Italian listed corporations are obliged to adopt the IFRS rules in consequence of the European Union enforcement (Regulation 1606/2002). Moreover, there is an amendment to the fourth directive, leading to the possibility of preparing a statement of performance, instead of the traditional profit and loss (EU directive n° 51/2003, article 1). The IFRS conduct to the measurement of a comprehensive income and the IASB is currently dealing with a project related to the opportunity of recommending a statement of performance (exposure draft of proposed amendments to IAS 1 “Presentation of financial statements”, 2006). Since accounting models have to compete in the marketplace (Watt-Zimmerman, 1986), it is believed to be extremely important to verify whether cohabitation is possible or differences may be reduced in the long run between the OIC standards and IFRS. This effort has to take into account that the underlying approaches are almost influenced by different cultural conditions and economical environment in response to specific needs and that dissimilarities affects book-keeping and disclosure behavior (Hofstede, 1980), leading differences almost in accounting systems (Caldarelli, 1997), carrying values (Gray, 1988) and financial reporting (Nobes, 1980). Because of the increasing use of fair value, the paper specially focuses on the accounting treatment of changes in value of assets and liabilities. According to this topic, it is necessary to consider almost two aspects. As far as the first issue is concerned, it is known that consistent with the Italian practice gains are recognized in net profit only when they result in the receipt of cash or the acquisition of assets that are reasonably certain to be turned into cash and, due to the conservatism concept, anticipated gains do not enter the measurement of income.
Using an Online Store to Augment the Learning of Leadership Fundamentals
Dr. Robert L. McKeage, University of Scranton, Scranton, PA
Dr. Len Tischler, University of Scranton, Scranton, PA
Dr. Cynthia W. Cann, University of Scranton, Scranton, PA
Students in our Business Leadership Program began an online retail store for the Alumni Society. This paper describes how operating the online store has been helping students learn leadership fundamentals more effectively than only doing traditional course work. The paper discusses challenges the students have faced and the learning they have gained in setting up and operating the business. Questions and suggestions for future directions will be discussed. Many schools try to create leadership learning opportunities. Our Business Leadership Program, established in 1991, has proven to be a success: our students earn approximately $10,000 more in starting salary than the average graduate at our university. In the spirit of continuous improvement we recently had our students develop and implement an online retail business: a store that sells university-related goods for the Alumni Society. We are finding that this experience serves as an effective vehicle for learning about both business and leadership. This paper is focused on how running this on line store has enhanced students’ learning about leadership. This paper will be organized along the lines of selected leadership skills. To determine the appropriate skills to focus on we analyzed three leadership textbooks (Daft, 2002; DuBrin, 2004; Yukl, 2006). We found that they present common leadership concepts and issues (see Table I below). Since these leadership concepts and issues generally form the foundation for teaching leadership, we have used them as a framework to explain how running the online store has led to learning gains by our students on the same concepts and issues. Leadership educators over the years have dealt with many challenging questions that include whether leadership is a skill, trait or behavior. (Doh, 2003). Beyond this are the questions of “can leadership be taught?” – “are great leaders born or made?”, “is leadership the same as management?” Terry Pearce, instructor at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, states “that true leadership must be experienced not taught” (Bisoux 2005, p.40). Paula Hill Strasser, director of Business Leadership Center at Southern Methodist University, recently stated, “We don’t believe leaders are born, but that people are born with different potentials to lead…leadership can’t be taught, but it can be learned through facilitation, simulation, and one-on-one coaching. It’s a process of self-discovery” (Bisoux, 2005, p.42) Today, most educators agree that leadership includes both skills and behaviors (Doh, 2003). That being the case, educators need to provide students with various learning opportunities that will sharpen both. The development and operation of our on-line store provides our students opportunities to try out skills and behaviors, to reflect on their behaviors both in isolation and with their cohort group, to receive feedback from faculty, alumni and fellow participants, and to reflect on their and others’ behaviors in light of management and leadership theories.
The Choice of Entry Mode Strategies and Decisions for International Market Expansion
Dr. Lisa Y. Chen, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Dr. Bahaudin Mujtaba, Nova Southeastern University, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Previous research on entry mode strategies has identified numerous factors that influence firms’ strategic decisions for selecting foreign market entry modes. The decisions involved in the foreign expansion are complex, requiring consideration of many factors. This study investigates the factors that comprise multinational firms’ decisions to operate in foreign markets in one of four entry modes. This study utilizes a transaction cost approach and synthesizes non-TCE (Transaction Cost Economics) approaches as a conceptual basis to develop a framework by investigating the findings in previous studies of the effect of several governance structures on the choice of foreign market entry modes, and by exploring key factors that may influence the choice of foreign market entry modes. Firms attempting to seize new business opportunities for growth or cost reduction through foreign market investments often face complex option decisions (Osland, Taylor, & Zou, 2001). A method for decision-making, entry mode provides a range of options from which firms can choose that allows them to begin business in a foreign market. Because each entry mode offers specific benefits and risks (Chang & Rosenzweig, 2001), the issue of foreign entry mode choice is one of the most important aspects of international marketing management (Bradley & Gannon, 2000). When a firm seeks to enter a foreign market, the firm must make the important strategic decision of the most appropriate entry mode to use for that market (Agarwal & Ramaswami, 1992). Of additional importance, the choice of entry mode defines the strategic flexibility with which the firm will be able to identify and adjust its resources in the long run as it attempts to generate a sustainable competitive advantage (Domke-Damonte, 2000).
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