• Learning CSR for sustainable corporate advantage

      Kakabadse, Andrew P.; Kakabadse, Nada K.; Lee-Davies, Linda; Cranfield School of Management; University of Northampton; London Academy Business School (IGI Global, 2016-08)
      Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has become a strategic and operational reality of the business and academic world. Not that the principles of CSR are always respected or that its practice is consistently applied. Bearing in mind the multi-faceted nature of both CSR and the corporate environment, as well as the paradox of what is taught in Higher Education and what is practised within its own walls, this paper provides a learning cyclical pathway to sustainable CSR implementation and progress review. As well as highlighting the role that Higher Education has to play, the paper emphasises that in order to embed CSR within the corporate environment, questions need to be raised concerning on-going CSR improvement in order to both protect and engage a wide range of stakeholders towards sustainable corporate advantage.
    • Linking operations, marketing and environmental capabilities and diversification to hotel performance: a data envelopment analysis approach

      Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan; Ramanathan, Usha; Zhang, Yubo (Elsevier, 2016-03)
      This study examines the impacts of marketing capability, operations capability, environmental capability and diversification strategy on performance of hotel industry in the UK. We conceptualize these impacts by drawing on the resource-based-view of a firm as the theoretical underpinning. We use the financial archival data and information obtained from websites. We use content analysis, regression analysis and Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA). Our results show that operations capability and environmental capability have significant positive effects on performance, marketing capability has a significant negative impact but diversification strategy does not impact on performance. Additionally, there is no evidence of the moderating effects of efficiency on these impacts. Our study suggests that hotel industry in the UK ought to focus on developing operations and environmental capabilities especially by exploiting the synergies between them but reduce excessive reliance on marketing. This paper makes two important contributions to the literature. First, it applies a framework linking the three capabilities (operations, marketing and environment) and diversification to the specific case of the hotel industry. Second, unlike similar previous studies, ours is the first to incorporate environmental capabilities in the analysis.
    • Agricultural information dissemination using ICTs: a review and analysis of information dissemination models in China

      Zhang, Yun; Wang, Lei; Duan, Yanqing; Ministry of Agriculture, China; University of Bedfordshire (Elsevier, 2016-03)
      Over the last three decades, China’s agriculture sector has been transformed from the traditional to modern practice through the effective deployment of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). Information processing and dissemination have played a critical role in this transformation process. Many studies in relation to agriculture information services have been conducted in China, but few of them have attempted to provide a comprehensive review and analysis of different information dissemination models and their applications. This paper aims to review and identify the ICT based information dissemination models in China and to share the knowledge and experience in applying emerging ICTs in disseminating agriculture information to farmers and farm communities to improve productivity and economic, social and environmental sustainability. The paper reviews and analyzes the development stages of China’s agricultural information dissemination systems and different mechanisms for agricultural information service development and operations. Seven ICT-based information dissemination models are identified and discussed. Success cases are presented. The findings provide a useful direction for researchers and practitioners in developing future ICT based information dissemination systems. It is hoped that this paper will also help other developing countries to learn from China’s experience and best practice in their endeavor of applying emerging ICTs in agriculture information dissemination and knowledge transfer.
    • Understanding complexity: the curvilinear relationship between environmental performance and firm performance

      Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan (Springer, 2016-02-26)
      The nature of the relationship between environmental performance (EP) and firm performance (FP) of corporations is a long standing and contentious issue in the literature. This study is intended to advance this debate by arguing for the existence of curvilinear relationship and empirically testing the same using survey data on UK manufacturing firms. FP is captured in terms of growth in sales and market share. Our results show evidence for a quadratic relationship—as firms improve their EP, they seem to achieve much higher levels of FP. These results are consistent with the resource-based view of a firm; as firms engage in EP activities, they are able to gain inimitable knowledge that helps in further learning to further improve performance. Based on our results, we suggest that new studies focus on strategies to extend the period of increasing returns and maximizing the benefits of the positive association between EP and FP.
    • Project management: practice-based learning at a UK university

      Philpott, Elly; Owen, David; University of Bedfordshire (Emerald, 2016)
      The chapter evaluates Practice-Based Learning on a UK postgraduate course and proffers conceptual models and measures for the student practice-based experience. Improved understanding and experience is explored through the use of an in-depth case study of a practice-based unit on an MSc in Project Management. Data is collected through an exit survey of students which compares their understanding of hard and soft project management tools before and after completing a unit. Experience data is collected from the analysis of personal reflective reports. The results show a positive shift in understanding of hard and soft project management tools indicating significant value to the students. Supplementary value also comes in the form of teaching development, value to the clients and value to the university in terms of sustainable engagement and profile. Student experience of the unit was positive and negative. Positive experiences stem from good client communications, a motivated team and the buzz of a real project and lead to a perception of pride in outcomes and personal transferrable skills. Negative experiences stem from the lack of life experience, language difficulties, client unavailability, lack of Project Management knowledge and literature gaps which left students feeling ill-equipped to deal with the international group context. Negative experiences lead to stress and poor group development. Conceptual models for positive and negative experience are proposed. ‘Open Business Learning’ is introduced to distinguish Practice Based Learning in a business context. The study is based on a single simple case and has no statistical validity externally but is nonetheless based on a sound methodology which has sought to reduce problems with internal validity, reliability and bias. There is a balance to be sought between providing a positive student experience and practical learning. Practice-Based Learning may add significant value to the student in terms of improved understanding of hard and soft tools, but may need to be based upon positive and negative experience. We should be mindful of striving for a solely positive student experience if it is at the cost of more valuable learning.
    • The partner proliferation problem in disaster response networks

      Hasani, Sara; El-Haddadeh, Ramzi; Aktas, Emel (Springer International Publishing, 2016)
    • Environmental management practices and environmental performance: the roles of operations and marketing capabilities

      Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan; Yu, Wantao; University of Kent; University of Bedfordshire (Emerald, 2016)
      Purpose – The main purpose of this paper is to provide an initial analysis of the roles of functional capabilities in adopting environmental management practices (EMP) and improving environmental performance from an organizational capability perspective. Design/methodology/approach – By combing survey data and archival data from 121 UK based manufacturing firms, this study explores the relationships among functional capabilities (marketing and operations), EMP and environmental performance. Findings – The results show that marketing and operations capabilities significantly affect EMP, which in turn leads to improved environmental performance. More specifically, this study finds that EMP fully mediates the relationship between marketing capability and environmental performance. Practical implications – The results of this study provide guidance for managers considering how to develop environmental capability in order to improve environmental performance. Originality/value – This study addresses a demonstrable gap in the existing literature that few empirical studies have explored the potential effects of functional capabilities on implementing EMP.
    • Intersecting inequalities in higher education: reaching out to LGBT-identified students on universities marketing communications

      Mogaji, Emmanuel; Farinloye, Temitope; University of Befordshire; Questbury Research Services (2015-12-15)
      The marketisation of higher education has led to increasing emphasis on universities to market themselves to prospective students, competitions among all institutions – not just the very best to attract perspective students. Previous studies has suggested that educational qualifications, geographical mobility and financial considerations affects students choice of Universities and more likely universities will be presenting these information to attract prospective students. This research goes outside these conventional marketing appeal to consider if sexual orientation of students are considered as an advertising appeal and reaching out to prospective LGBT students, after all in the same vein as the Guardian and Times Higher Education Ranking of Universities, Stonewall, a UK charity that works for the equal rights of LGBT people, compiles the ‘Gay by Degree’ ranking of universities in UK, rating how gay-friendly these universities are. Results indicated that unlike disability or race, sexual orientation is seldom considered in University marketing communication, suggesting the need to intersect this inequalities in higher education recruitment.
    • Acculturation to Global Consumer Culture (AGCC): testing the validity of the AGCC scale and some preliminary results from the United Kingdom

      Czarnecka, Barbara; Keles, Serap; University of Bedfordshire; University of Oslo (16th Cross-cultural Research Conference, 2015-12-13)
      This paper presents preliminary results from a study focused on acculturation to Global Consumer Culture (GCC) conducted in the UK. In particular, this paper’s aims are to test the validity of the original ‘Acculturation to Global Consumer Culture’ (AGCC) scale in a new cultural context, and to present preliminary results about the relation between acculturation to GCC and demographic factors, technological anxiety, and compulsive buying. This paper is based on online questionnaire completed by 340 respondents in the UK. The psychometric properties of this scale were verified via confirmatory factor analysis, and a new, shorter scale was proposed. Some results about the links between acculturation to GCC and demographics, technological anxiety, and compulsive buying were presented and discussed within the context of extant GCC research. Limitations and further research were discussed. Key words: consumer culture, global consumer culture, acculturation to global consumer culture
    • Explaining the price of oil 1971–2014 : the need to use reliable data on oil discovery and to account for ‘mid-point’ peak

      Bentley, Roger; Bentley, Yongmei; University of Bedfordshire; University of Reading (Elsevier, 2015-11)
      This paper explains, in broad terms, the price of oil from 1971 to 2014 and focuses on the large price increases after 1973 and 2004. The explanation for these increases includes the quantity of conventional oil (i.e. oil in fields) discovered, combined with the decline in production of this oil that occurs typically once ‘mid-point’ is passed. Many past explanations of oil price have overlooked these two constraints, and hence provided insufficient explanations of oil price. Reliable data on conventional oil discovery cannot come from public-domain proved (‘1P’) oil reserves, as such data are very misleading. Instead oil industry backdated proved-plus-probable (‘2P’) data must be used. It is recognised that accessing 2P data can be expensive, or difficult. The ‘mid-point’ peak of conventional oil production results from a region's field-size distribution, its fall-off in oil discovery, and the physics of field decline. In terms of the future price of oil, estimates of the global recoverable resource of conventional oil show that the oil price will remain high on average, unless dramatic changes occur in the volume of production and cost of non-conventional oils, or if the overall demand for oil were to decline. The paper concludes with policy recommendations.
    • Linking business analytics to decision making effectiveness: a path model analysis

      Cao, Guangming; Duan, Yanqing; Li, Gendao; University of Bedfordshire (IEEE, 2015-06-24)
      While business analytics is being increasingly used to gain data-driven insights to support decision making, little research exists regarding the mechanism through which business analytics can be used to improve decision-making effectiveness (DME) at the organizational level. Drawing on the information processing view and contingency theory, this paper develops a research model linking business analytics to organizational DME. The research model is tested using structural equation modeling based on 740 responses collected from U.K. businesses. The key findings demonstrate that business analytics, through the mediation of a data-driven environment, positively influences information processing capability, which in turn has a positive effect on DME. The findings also demonstrate that the paths from business analytics to DME have no statistical differences between large and medium companies, but some differences between manufacturing and professional service industries. Our findings contribute to the business analytics literature by providing useful insights into business analytics applications and the facilitation of data-driven decision making. They also contribute to manager's knowledge and understanding by demonstrating how business analytics should be implemented to improve DME
    • Creative execution of United Kingdom banks’ print advertisement

      Mogaji, Emmanuel; University of Bedfordshire (University of Bedfordshire, 2015-05-14)
      The place of the financial services industry in an economy cannot be over-emphasised, its utilitarian nature has made previous researchers suggest that it demands a different advertising strategy; however, the need to create an effective advertisement in this highly saturated industry cannot be overemphasised. This research aims at developing an understanding of creative strategies adopted by UK Banks’ in their print advertisement. Analysis of 1274 print advertisements in UK newspapers over twelve month period was carried out. The advertisements were analysed on the basis of their size, images used, colour, orientation and number of words used. In terms of the advert size, to create an impression, Full Centre Spread was seldom used whereas small advertisements had the largest share. Images of cartoon characters, celebrities, children, colleagues, couples and customers were frequently used. Cartoons were predominately used by the old LloydsTSB Bank and TSB Bank while Santander used the presence of sport celebrities in their advertisements. HSBC Adverts were predominantly printed in black colour on while First Direct advertisements had white text printed on black background. Natwest adverts are more likely to be in Purple, Lloyds in Green and TSB in Blue, these are their brand colours and are frequently used to reinforce their brand. The creative design, which includes the use of images and colours, has been noted to enhance the attractiveness and memorability of these advertisements which also conveys credibility. The research contributes to the study of advertisement design, providing outcomes relevant to numerous types of stakeholders.
    • The moderating effect of operations efficiency on the links between environmental performance and financial performance: the UK evidence

      Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan; Akanni, Adewole Oluwatomi (Korea Technology Innovation Society, 2015-05-01)
      Drawing upon the resource-based-view of a firm, we investigate the moderating role of operations efficiency on the link between environmental and financial performance. Extant literature has highlighted that operations efficiency is closely associated with the environmental/financial performance of firms, but no empirical study has investigated how operations efficiency affects the link between environmental and financial performance. We argue that operations efficiency could act as a moderator of this relationship. To test the hypothesized relationships, we have used available secondary quantitative UK data, namely data on the environmental/financial performance of Britain’s most admired companies. By employing moderated regression analysis, we have found strong evidence for the moderating impact of operations efficiency. Our results are useful to managers in that they show that improvements in operations efficiency in a company can also help improve environmental/financial performance and vice versa.
    • Jaloud v Netherlands and Hassan v United Kingdom: time for a principled approach in the application of the ECHR to military action abroad

      Borelli, Silvia (2015-05)
      The aim of the present piece is not to undertake an examination of which of international human rights law (IHRL) and international humanitarian law (IHL) is ‘better’ or more appropriate to regulate the conduct of States in situations of armed conflict. Advocates of IHRL argue that it provides heightened protection for individuals, and that, by its own terms, it applies to, and is perfectly equipped to deal with situations of exception, including armed conflicts.[1] On the other hand, supporters of IHL focus on the need not to place unnecessary fetters upon the freedom of States to pursue their military objectives in situations of armed conflict, and argue that IHL provides an adequate level of protection, whilst being more pragmatic, better suited to the specificities of armed conflict and more likely to be observed by the parties to the conflict.[2] Insofar as they prioritise different values, proponents of the two opposing camps to a large extent talk past each other and the debate is therefore necessarily somewhat sterile.
    • Shareholder primacy and stakeholders’ interests in the aftermath of a takeover: a review of empirical evidence

      Nyombi, Chrispas; Mortimer, Tom; Lewis, Rhidian; Zouridakis, Georgios; University of Bedfordshire; University of Essex (Sweet and Maxwell, 2015-03)
      Since the takeover of Cadbury Plc in 2010, there has been increased academic attention on investor short-termism during takeovers and whether the continued imposition of the board neutrality rule has made it easy to acquire UK companies. This paper contributes to this growing body of research by examining existing empirical studies to determine whether concerns over short-termism and the continued imposition of the board neutrality rule are justified.
    • Bringing the world to Carnival: practice based teaching at a UK university

      Philpott, Elly; Corfan, D.; University of Bedfordshire (2015)
    • IN&OUT model: knowledge management applied to the succession process in family business

      Sarabia, Maria; Obeso, Maria; Philpott, Elly; University of Cantabria; University of Bedfordshire; University of Cantabria (2015)
      Evidence suggests that only 30 per cent of family businesses survive after the first generation. The purpose of this paper is to explain how the unique culture and knowledge forms, which are identified as intangible and relevant advantages on family businesses, can be protected through leadership succession. IN&OUT succession model is built on three previous frameworks: Denison culture model, Nonaka and Takeuchi's knowledge creation and next-generation socialization theory. The IN&OUT model presents a step-by-step process where the successor receives from the founder and from the business (IN); and the successor contributes to the group and to the organization (OUT), creating a dynamic loop of biographical leadership.
    • Creativity, innovation and human resource development.

      Loewenberger, Pauline Anne (Palgrave MacMillan, 2015)
    • A critique of shareholder primacy under UK takeover law and the continued imposition of the Board Neutrality Rule

      Nyombi, Chrispas; University of Essex (Emerald, 2015)
      Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to determine whether the Board Neutrality Rule and the primacy afforded to shareholders during takeovers is justified under common law and policy. Design/methodology/approach – The paper provides a detailed assessment of the role play by the board neutrality rule and whether this is supported by takeover law and Company law. A review of case law and statutes is provided. The paper is largely analytical. Findings – The paper finds little justification for the continued imposition of the Board Neutrality Rule. Originality/value – The paper adds to the growing body of research literature which has analysed the role played by the Board Neutrality Rule during takeovers.