Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 1668

Economics and Management Engineering

The Importance of Customer Engagement and Service Innovation in Value Co-Creation

The interaction of customers with businesses is a process that is critical to the running of those businesses. Different levels of customer engagement and service innovation exist when pursuing value co-creation endeavors. The important thing in this whole process is for business managers know the benefits that can be realized when these activities are pursued effectively. The purpose of this paper is to first identify the importance of value co-creation when pursued via customer engagement and service innovation. Secondly, it will also identify the conditions under which value co-destruction can occur on the same. The background of the topic will be reviewed followed by the literature review with a special focus on the definition of these terms and the research design to be used. The research found that it is beneficial to have a strong relationship between stakeholders and the business in order to have strong customer engagement and service innovation.

Risk Management Approach for Lean, Agile, Resilient and Green Supply Chain

Implementation of LARG (Lean, Agile, Resilient, Green) practices in the supply chain management is a complex task mainly because ecological, economical and operational goals are usually in conflict. To implement these LARG practices successfully, companies’ need relevant decision making tools allowing processes performance control and improvement strategies visibility. To contribute to this issue, this work tries to answer the following research question: How to master performance and anticipate problems in supply chain LARG practices implementation? To answer this question, a risk management approach (RMA) is adopted. Indeed, the proposed RMA aims basically to assess the ability of a supply chain, guided by “Lean, Green and Achievement” performance goals, to face “agility and resilience risk” factors. To proof its relevance, a logistics academic case study based on simulation is used to illustrate all its stages. It shows particularly how to build the “LARG risk map” which is the main output of this approach.

A Review of the Antecedents and Consequences of Employee Engagementc

Employee engagement has continued to gain popularity among practitioners, consultants and academicians recent years. This is due to the fact that the engaged employees are central to organizational success in today’s highly competitive and rapidly changing business environment. Employee engagement depicts a situation whereby employee’s harnessed themselves to their work roles. The importance of employee engagement to organizations cannot be overemphasized in today’s rapidly changing business environment. Organizations both large and small are constantly striving to improve their performance, retain employees, reduce absenteeism, and create loyal customers among others. To be able to achieve these organizations need a team of highly engaged employees. In line with this, the study attempts to provide a valuable framework for understanding the antecedents and consequences of employee engagement in organizations. The paper categorizes the antecedents of employee engagement into individual and organizational factors which it is assumed that the existence of such factors could result into engaged employees that will be of benefit to organizations. Therefore, it is recommended that organizations should revisit and redesign its employee engagement system to enable them attain their organizational goals and objectives. In addition, organizations should note that engagement is personal but organizational engagement programmes should be about everyone in the organization. The findings from this paper adds to existing studies about employee engagement and also provide awareness to academics and practitioners about the importance of employee engagement to improve organizations efficiency and effectiveness, as well as to impact to overall firm performance.

Relation between Organizational Climate and Personnel Performance Assessment in a Tourist Service Company

This investigation aims at analyzing and determining the relation between two very important variables in the human resource management: The organizational climate and the performance assessment. This study aims at contributing with knowledge in the search of the relation between the mentioned variables because the literature still does not provide solid evidence to this respect and the cases revised are incipient to reach conclusions enabling a typology about this relation.To this regard, a correlational and cross-sectional perspective was adopted in which quantitative and qualitative techniques were chosen with the total of the workers of the tourist service company PTS Peru. In order to measure the organizational climate, the OCQ (Organization Climate Questionnaire) from was used; it has 50 items and measures 9 dimensions of the Organizational Climate. Also, to assess performance, a questionnaire with 21 items and 6 dimensions was designed. As a means of assessment, a focus group was prepared and was applied to a worker in every area of the company. Additionally, interviews to human resources experts were conducted. The results of the investigation show a clear relation between the organizational climate and the personnel performance assessment as well as a relation between the nine dimensions of the organizational climate and the work performance in general and with some of its dimensions.

Evaluation of Top-down and Bottom-up Leadership Development Programs in a Finnish Company

The purpose of this paper is to examine and evaluate the top-down and bottom-up leadership development programs focused on human capital that improve the performance of a company. This study reports on the external top-down leadership development program supported by a consulting company and the internal participatory action research of the bottom-up program. The sickness rate and the lost time incident failure rate decreased and the ideas produced for cost savings improved, leading to increased earnings during the top-down program. The estimated cost savings potential of the bottom-up program was 3.8 million euro based on the cost savings of meeting habits, maintenance practices and the way of working in production. The results of this study are useful for those who plan and evaluate leadership development and human capital productivity consultation programs to improve the performance of a company.

The Carbon Trading Price and Trading Volume Forecast in Shanghai City by BP Neural Network

In this paper, the BP neural network model is established to predict the carbon trading price and carbon trading volume in Shanghai City. First of all, we find the data of carbon trading price and carbon trading volume in Shanghai City from September 30, 2015 to December 23, 2016. The carbon trading price and trading volume data were processed to get the average value of each 5, 10, 20, 30, and 60 carbon trading price and trading volume. Then, these data are used as input of BP neural network model. Finally, after the training of BP neural network, the prediction values of Shanghai carbon trading price and trading volume are obtained, and the model is tested.

Analysis of Delays during Initial Phase of Construction Projects and Mitigation Measures

A perfect start is a key factor for project completion on time. The study examined the effects of delayed mobilization of resources during the initial phases of the project. This paper mainly highlights the identification and categorization of all delays during the initial construction phase and their root cause analysis with corrective/control measures for the Kuwait Oil Company oil and gas projects. A relatively good percentage of the delays identified during the project execution (Contract award to end of defects liability period) attributed to mobilization/preliminary activity delays. Data analysis demonstrated significant increase in average project delay during the last five years compared to the previous period. Contractors had delays/issues during the initial phase, which resulted in slippages and progressively increased, resulting in time and cost overrun. Delays/issues not mitigated on time during the initial phase had very high impact on project completion. Data analysis of the delays for the past five years was carried out using trend chart, scatter plot, process map, box plot, relative importance index and Pareto chart. Construction of any project inside the Gathering Centers involves complex management skills related to work force, materials, plant, machineries, new technologies etc. Delay affects completion of projects and compromises quality, schedule and budget of project deliverables. Works executed as per plan during the initial phase and start-up duration of the project construction activities resulted in minor slippages/delays in project completion. In addition, there was a good working environment between client and contractor resulting in better project execution and management. Mainly, the contractor was on the front foot in the execution of projects, which had minimum/no delays during the initial and construction period. Hence, having a perfect start during the initial construction phase shall have a positive influence on the project success. Our research paper studies each type of delay with some real example supported by statistic results and suggests mitigation measures. Detailed analysis carried out with all stakeholders based on impact and occurrence of delays to have a practical and effective outcome to mitigate the delays. The key to improvement is to have proper control measures and periodic evaluation/audit to ensure implementation of the mitigation measures. The focus of this research is to reduce the delays encountered during the initial construction phase of the project life cycle.

Food Security Model and the Role of Community Empowerment: The Case of a Marginalized Village in Mexico, Tatoxcac, Puebla

Community empowerment has been proved to be a key element in the solution of the food security problem. As a result of a conceptual analysis, it was found that agricultural production, economic development and governance, are the traditional basis of food security models. Although the literature points to social inclusion as an important factor for food security, no model has considered it as the basis of it. The aim of this research is to identify different dimensions that make an integral model for food security, with emphasis on community empowerment. A diagnosis was made in the study community (Tatoxcac, Zacapoaxtla, Puebla), to know the aspects that impact the level of food insecurity. With a statistical sample integrated by 200 families, the Latin American and Caribbean Food Security Scale (ELCSA) was applied, finding that: in households composed by adults and children, have moderated food insecurity, (ELCSA scale has three levels, low, moderated and high); that result is produced mainly by the economic income capacity and the diversity of the diet on its food. With that being said, a model was developed to promote food security through five dimensions: 1. Regional context of the community; 2. Structure and system of local food; 3. Health and nutrition; 4. Information and technology access; and 5. Self-awareness and empowerment. The specific actions on each axis of the model, allowed a systemic approach needed to attend food security in the community, through the empowerment of society. It is concluded that the self-awareness of local communities is an area of extreme importance, which must be taken into account for participatory schemes to improve food security. In the long term, the model requires the integrated participation of different actors, such as government, companies and universities, to solve something such vital as food security.

The Influence of Congruence between Incentive System and Locus of Control on Team Performance: An Experiment
Organizations are increasingly relying upon teamwork; however, little is known about the best fit among incentive system, team composition, and group performance. To further explore this issue this study examines whether the congruence between incentive system and locus of control (LoC) affects team performance. To reconcile opposite lines of argument in literature regarding the best incentive system for a team, this paper uses the social identity perspective and person-environment (P-E) fit theory to understand behavior in a group process. A laboratory experiment with postgraduate students is conducted to test the hypotheses. One hundred and five accounting students were assigned to three-person work groups, where they completed an independent task under one of two types of incentive—individual and group incentive systems—after their LoC was measured. The findings confirm the hypothesis. Group incentive results in an enhanced team performance. Team performance is better when there is congruence between incentive system and LoC. Group incentive system combined with external LoC results in the best performance, while individual incentive system results in a better team performance when combined with internal LoC. The result suggests that a cooperative process enables ‘ordinary people’ to obtain extraordinary results.
An Analysis of the Relationship between Manufacturing Growth and Economic Growth in South Africa: A Cointegration Approach

This paper examines the relationship between manufacturing growth and economic growth in South Africa using quarterly data ranging from 2001 to 2014. The paper employed the Johansen cointegration to test the Kaldor’s hypothesis. The Johansen cointegration results revealed that there is a long run relationship between GDP, manufacturing, service and employment. The Granger causality results revealed that there is a unidirectional causality running from manufacturing growth to GDP growth. The overall findings of the study confirm that Kaldor’s first law of growth is applicable in South African economy. Therefore, investment strategies and policies should be alignment towards promoting growth in the manufacturing sector in order to boost the economic growth of South Africa.

Impact of Flexibility on Patient Satisfaction and Behavioral Intention: A Critical Reassessment and Model Development

In the anticipation of demand fluctuations, services cannot be inventoried and hence it creates a difficult problem in marketing of services. The inability to meet customers (patients) requirements in healthcare context has more serious consequences than other service sectors. In order to meet patient requirements in the current uncertain environment, healthcare organizations are seeking ways for improved service delivery. Flexibility provides a mechanism for reducing variability in service encounters and improved performance. Flexibility is defined as the ability of the organization to cope with changing circumstances or instability caused by the environment. Patient satisfaction is an important performance outcome of healthcare organizations. However, the paucity of information exists in healthcare delivery context to examine the impact of flexibility on patient satisfaction and behavioral intention. The present study is an attempt to develop a conceptual foundation for investigating overall impact of flexibility on patient satisfaction and behavioral intention. Several dimensions of flexibility in healthcare context are examined and proposed to have a significant impact on patient satisfaction and intention. Furthermore, the study involves a critical examination of determinants of patient satisfaction and development of a comprehensive view the relationship between flexibility, patient satisfaction and behavioral intention. Finally, theoretical contributions and implications for healthcare professionals are suggested from flexibility perspective.

Risk in the South African Sectional Title Industry: An Assurance Perspective
The sectional title industry has been a part of the property landscape in South Africa for almost half a century, and plays a significant role in addressing the housing problem in the country. Stakeholders such as owners and investors in sectional title property are in most cases not directly involved in the management thereof, and place reliance on the audited annual financial statements of bodies corporate for decision-making purposes. Although the industry seems to be highly regulated, the legislation regarding accounting and auditing of sectional title is vague and ambiguous. Furthermore, there are no industry-specific auditing and accounting standards to guide accounting and auditing practitioners in performing their work and industry financial benchmarks are not readily available. In addition, financial pressure on sectional title schemes is often very high due to the fact that some owners exercise unrealistic pressure to keep monthly levies as low as possible. All these factors have an impact on the business risk as well as audit risk of bodies corporate. Very little academic research has been undertaken on the sectional title industry in South Africa from an accounting and auditing perspective. The aim of this paper is threefold: Firstly, to discuss the findings of a literature review on uncertainties, ambiguity and confusing aspects in current legislation regarding the audit of a sectional title property that may cause or increase audit and business risk. Secondly, empirical findings of risk-related aspects from the results of interviews with three groups of body corporate role-players will be discussed. The role-players were body corporate trustee chairpersons, body corporate managing agents and accounting and auditing practitioners of bodies corporate. Specific reference will be made to business risk and audit risk. Thirdly, practical recommendations will be made on possibilities of closing the audit expectation gap, and further research opportunities in this regard will be discussed.
Determinants of Extra Charges for Container Shipments: A Case Study of Nexus Zone Logistics
The international shipping business is related to numerous controls or regulations of export and import shipments. It is costly and time consuming, and when something goes wrong or when the buyer or seller fails to comply with the regulations, it can result in penalties, delays, and unexpected costs etc. For the focus of this study, the researchers have selected a local forwarder that provides forwarding and clearance services, Nexus Zone Logistics. It was identified that this company currently has many extra costs to be paid including local and detention charges, which negatively impacts the flow of income and reduces overall stability. Two variables have been identified as factors of extra charges; loaded containers entering the port by exceeded closing time and late delivery of empty containers to the container yard. This study is a qualitative in nature and the secondary data collected was analyzed using self-administered observation. The findings of this study were covered by one selected case for each export and import shipment between July and December 2014. The data were analyzed using frequency analysis based on tables and graphs. The researcher recommends Nexus Zone Logistics impose a 1% deposit payment per container for each shipment (export and import) to its customers.
Detecting Financial Bubbles Using Gap between Common Stocks and Preferred Stocks

How to detecting financial bubble? Addressing this simple question has been the focus of a vast amount of empirical research spanning almost half a century. However, financial bubble is hard to observe and varying over the time; there needs to be more research on this area. In this paper, we used abnormal difference between common stocks price and those preferred stocks price to explain financial bubble. First, we proposed the ‘W-index’ which indicates spread between common stocks and those preferred stocks in stock market. Second, to prove that this ‘W-index’ is valid for measuring financial bubble, we showed that there is an inverse relationship between this ‘W-index’ and S&P500 rate of return. Specifically, our hypothesis is that when ‘W-index’ is comparably higher than other periods, financial bubbles are added up in stock market and vice versa; according to our hypothesis, if investors made long term investments when ‘W-index’ is high, they would have negative rate of return; however, if investors made long term investments when ‘W-index’ is low, they would have positive rate of return. By comparing correlation values and adjusted R-squared values of between W-index and S&P500 return, VIX index and S&P500 return, and TED index and S&P500 return, we showed only W-index has significant relationship between S&P500 rate of return. In addition, we figured out how long investors should hold their investment position regard the effect of financial bubble. Using this W-index, investors could measure financial bubble in the market and invest with low risk.

Viability of Smart Grids for Green IT Sustainability: Contemplated within the Context of Sri Lanka

Information Technology (IT) is considered to be the prime contributor towards most of the energy releases and hence recursively impacting on the environmental Carbon Footprint on a major scale. The hostile effects brought about due to this massive carbon release such as global warming and ecosystem wipe-outs are currently being realized in Sri Lanka due to the rapid development and merging of computer based technologies. Sri Lanka, being a nature-rich island, has the undying need to preserve its natural environment hence resolving to better ‘Green IT’ practices in all possible spheres. Green IT implies the IT related practices for environmental sustainability. But the industrial divisions in Sri Lanka are still hesitant to fully realize the benefits of applying better “Green IT” principles due to considerations related to costs and other issues. In order to bring about a positive awareness of Green IT, the use of Smart Grids, which is yet a conceptualized principle within the Sri Lankan context, can be considered as a feasible proof in hand. This paper tends to analyze the feasibility of utilizing Smart Grids to ensure minimized cost and effects in preserving the environment hence ensuring Sustainable Green IT practices in an economically and technologically viable manner in Sri Lanka.

The Requirements of Developing a Framework for Successful Adoption of Quality Management Systems in the Construction Industry
Quality management systems (QMSs) in the construction industry are often implemented to ensure that sufficient effort is made by companies to achieve the required levels of quality for clients. Attainment of these quality levels can result in greater customer satisfaction, which is fundamental to ensure long-term competitiveness for construction companies. However, the construction sector is still lagging behind other industries in terms of its successful adoption of QMSs, due to the relative lack of acceptance of the benefits of these systems among industry stakeholders, as well as from other barriers related to implementing them. Thus, there is a critical need to undertake a detailed and comprehensive exploration of adoption of QMSs in the construction sector. This paper comprehensively investigates in the construction sector setting, the impacts of all the salient factors surrounding successful implementation of QMSs in building organizations, especially those of external factors. This study is part of an ongoing PhD project, which aims to develop a new framework that integrates both internal and external factors affecting QMS implementation. To achieve the paper aim and objectives, interviews will be conducted to define the external factors influencing the adoption of QMSs, and to obtain holistic critical success factors (CSFs) for implementing these systems. In the next stage of data collection, a questionnaire survey will be developed to investigate the prime barriers facing the adoption of QMSs, the CSFs for their implementation, and the external factors affecting the adoption of these systems. Following the survey, case studies will be undertaken to validate and explain in greater detail the real effects of these factors on QMSs adoption. Specifically, this paper evaluates the effects of the external factors in terms of their impact on implementation success within the selected case studies. Using findings drawn from analyzing the data obtained from these various approaches, specific recommendations for the successful implementation of QMSs will be presented, and an operational framework will be developed. Finally, through a focus group, the findings of the study and the new developed framework will be validated. Ultimately, this framework will be made available to the construction industry to facilitate the greater adoption and implementation of QMSs. In addition, deployment of the applicable recommendations suggested by the study will be shared with the construction industry to more effectively help construction companies to implement QMSs, and overcome the barriers experienced by businesses, thus promoting the achievement of higher levels of quality and customer satisfaction.
Influence of Transformation Leadership Style on Employee Engagement among Generation Y
The aim of this research is to determine the influence of transformation leadership style on employee engagement among Generation Y. The growing of Generation Y employees in Malaysia has raised concerns about how to engage and motivate this cohort. Transformation Leadership style is one of the key factors to increase employee engagement levels in the organization. This study has proven to be important for the researchers and the organization to properly understand the concept of employee engagement, transformation leadership style and their relationship. The samples in this study included 221 respondents of Generation Y who are currently working in Selangor and Klang Valley area in Malaysia. The data were collected using questionnaires and analyzed by using Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS). The results show that there is a significant relationship between the dimension of intellectual stimulation, inspiration motivation and individual consideration on employee engagement. In contrast, the results have revealed that there is no significant relationship between idealized influences of a leader on employee engagement among Generation Y.
A Framework for Investigating Reverse Logistics Capability of E-Tailers
Environmental concern and consumer rights have entailed e-tailers to adopt better strategies to facilitate product returns from customers. As the demand for reverse logistics (RL) continues to grow, little is known about what motivates e-tailers to enhance their RL capabilities and about the role RL capabilities plays in enabling e-tailers to achieve better customer satisfaction and economic performance. Based on resource-based theory and institutional theory, this article proposes that the following factors play a critical role in influencing the RL capability of e-tailers: (a) Financial resource commitment to RL, (b) managerial resource commitment to RL, and (c) institutional pressure to implement RL. Based on the role of these factors, the study provides a framework and propositions that serve to guide future research addressing the link among resources, institutional pressure, and RL capability.
Accelerating the Uptake of Smart City Applications through Cloud Computing
Smart cities are high on the political agenda around the globe. However, planning smart cities and deploying applications dealing with the complex problems of the urban environment is a very challenging task that is difficult to be undertaken solely by the cities. We argue that the uptake of smart city strategies is facilitated, first, through the development of smart city application repositories allowing re-use of already developed and tested software, and, second, through cloud computing which disengages city authorities from any resource constraints, technical or financial, and has a higher impact and greater effect at the city level The combination of these two solutions allows city governments and municipalities to select and deploy a large number of applications dedicated to different city functions, which collectively could create a multiplier effect with a greater impact on the urban environment.
Achieving Design-Stage Elemental Cost Planning Accuracy: Case Study of New Zealand

An aspect of client expenditure management that requires attention is the level of accuracy achievable in design-stage elemental cost planning. This has been a major concern for construction clients and practitioners in New Zealand (NZ). Pre-tender estimating inaccuracies are significantly influenced by the level of risk information available to estimators. Proper cost planning activities should ensure the production of a project’s likely construction costs (initial and final), and subsequent cost control activities should prevent unpleasant consequences of cost overruns, disputes and project abandonment. If risks were properly identified and priced at the design stage, observed variance between design-stage elemental cost plans (ECPs) and final tender sums (FTS) (initial contract sums) could be reduced. This study investigates the variations between design-stage ECPs and FTS of construction projects, with a view to identifying risk factors that are responsible for the observed variance. Data were sourced through interviews, and risk factors were identified by using thematic analysis. Access was obtained to project files from the records of study participants (consultant quantity surveyors), and document analysis was employed in complementing the responses from the interviews. Study findings revealed the discrepancies between ECPs and FTS in the region of -14% and +16%. It is opined in this study that the identified risk factors were responsible for the variability observed. The values obtained from the analysis would enable greater accuracy in the forecast of FTS by Quantity Surveyors. Further, whilst inherent risks in construction project developments are observed globally, these findings have important ramifications for construction projects by expanding existing knowledge on what is needed for reasonable budgetary performance and successful delivery of construction projects. The findings contribute significantly to the study by providing quantitative confirmation to justify the theoretical conclusions generated in the literature from around the world. This therefore adds to and consolidates existing knowledge.

Personal Knowledge Management: Systematic Review and Future Direction
Personal knowledge management is the aspect of knowledge management that relates to the way in which individuals organize and manage their own set of knowledge. While in that respect, there has been research in this area for the past 25 years, it is at present necessary to speculate upon what research has been done and what we have discovered about this arena of knowledge management. In contrast to organizational knowledge management, which focuses on a firm’s profitability and competitiveness, personal knowledge management (PKM) is concerned with the person’s self-effectiveness, competence and success. People are concerned in managing their knowledge in order to become more efficient in a variety of personal and organizational interests. This study presents a systematic review of PKM studies. Articles with PKM concepts are reviewed with the objective of clearly defining PKM, identifying the benefits of PKM, classifying the tools that enable PKM and finding the research gaps to indicate future research directions in the area. Consequently, we have developed a definition of PKM and identified the benefits of PKM, including an understanding of who seeks PKM and for what. Tools enabling PKM are identified and classified under three categories Web 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0 and finally the research gap and future directions are suggested. Research which facilitates collaboration by using semantic technologies is suggested to be studied further to improve PKM effectiveness.
Financial Decision-Making among Finance Students: An Empirical Study from the Czech Republic

Making sound financial decisions is an essential skill which can have an impact on life of each consumer of financial products. The aim of this paper is to examine decision-making concerning financial matters and personal finance. The selected target group was university students majoring in finance related fields. The study was conducted in the Czech Republic at Masaryk University in 2015. In order to analyze financial decision-making questions related to basic finance decisions were developed to address the research objective. The results of the study suggest gaps in detecting best solutions to given financial decision-making questions among finance students. The analysis results indicate relation between financial decision-making and own experience with holding and using concrete financial products.

A Reinforcement Learning Approach for Evaluation of Real-Time Disaster Relief Demand and Network Condition

Relief demand and transportation links availability is the essential information that is needed for every natural disaster operation. This information is not in hand once a disaster strikes. Relief demand and network condition has been evaluated based on prediction method in related works. Nevertheless, prediction seems to be over or under estimated due to uncertainties and may lead to a failure operation. Therefore, in this paper a stochastic programming model is proposed to evaluate real-time relief demand and network condition at the onset of a natural disaster. To address the time sensitivity of the emergency response, the proposed model uses reinforcement learning for optimization of the total relief assessment time. The proposed model is tested on a real size network problem. The simulation results indicate that the proposed model performs well in the case of collecting real-time information.

The Evaluation of Event Sport Tourism on Regional Economic Development

Event sport tourism (EST) has become an especially important economic sector around the world. As the magnitude continues to grow, attracting more tourists, media, and investment for the host community, and many local areas/regions and states have identified the expenditures by visitors as a potential source of economic or employment growth. The main purposes of this study are to investigate stakeholders’ insights into the feature of hosting EST and using them as a regional development strategy. Continuing the focus of previous literature on the regional development and economic benefits by hosting EST, a total of fıve semi-structured interview questions are designed and a thematic analysis is employed to conduct with eight key sport and tourism decision makers in Atlanta during July to August 2016. Through the depth interviews, the study will contribute to a better understanding of stakeholders’ decision-making, identifying benefits and constraints as well as leveraging the impacts of hosting EST. These findings have provided stakeholders’ perspectives of hosting EST and using them as a reference of regional development in emerging sport tourism markets in the US. Additionally, this study examines key considerations and issues that affect and are critical to reliable understanding of the economic impacts of hosting EST on the regional development, and it will be able to benefit future management authorities (i.e. governments and communities) in their sport tourism development endeavors in defining and hosting successful EST. Furthermore, the insights gained from the qualitative analysis could help other cities/regions analyzing the economic impacts of hosting EST and using it as an instrument of city development strategy.

Evaluating Factors Influencing Information Quality in Large Firms

Information quality is a major performance measure for an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system of any firm. This study identifies various critical success factors of information quality. The effect of various critical success factors like project management, reengineering efforts and interdepartmental communications on information quality is analyzed using a multiple regression model. Here quantitative data are collected from respondents from various firms through structured questionnaire for assessment of the information quality, project management, reengineering efforts and interdepartmental communications. The validity and reliability of the data are ensured using techniques like factor analysis, computing of Cronbach’s alpha. This study gives relative importance of each of the critical success factors. The findings suggest that among the various factors influencing information quality careful reengineering efforts are the most influencing factor. This paper gives clear insight to managers and practitioners regarding the relative importance of critical success factors influencing information quality so that they can formulate a strategy at the beginning of ERP system implementation.

Granger Causal Nexus between Financial Development and Energy Consumption: Evidence from Cross Country Panel Data
This paper examines the Granger causal nexus between financial development and energy consumption in the group of 35 Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Countries over the period 1988-2012. The study uses two financial development indicators such as private sector credit and stock market capitalization and seven energy consumption indicators such as coal, oil, gas, electricity, hydro-electrical, nuclear and biomass. Using panel cointegration tests, the study finds that financial development and energy consumption are cointegrated, indicating the presence of a long-run relationship between the two. Using a panel vector error correction model (VECM), the study detects both bidirectional and unidirectional causality between financial development and energy consumption. The variation of this causality is due to the use of different proxies for both financial development and energy consumption. The policy implication of this study is that economic policies should recognize the differences in the financial development-energy consumption nexus in order to maintain sustainable development in the selected 35 FATF countries.
Role of ICT and Wage Inequality in Organization
This study deals with wage inequality in organization and shows the relationship between ICT and wage in organization. To do so, we incorporate ICT’s factors in organization into our model. ICT’s factors are efficiencies of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Computer Assisted Design/Computer Assisted Manufacturing (CAD/CAM), and NETWORK. The improvement of ICT’s factors decrease the learning cost to solve problem pertaining to the hierarchy in organization. The improvement of NETWORK increases the wage inequality within workers and decreases within managers and entrepreneurs. The improvements of CAD/CAM and ERP increases the wage inequality within all agent, and partially increase it between the agents in hierarchy.
Exchange Rate Volatility, Its Determinants and Effects on the Manufacturing Sector in Nigeria

This study evaluated the effect of exchange rate volatility on the manufacturing sector of Nigeria. The flow and stock market theories of exchange rate determination was adopted considering macroeconomic determinants such as balance of trade, trade openness, and net international investment. Furthermore, the influence of changes in parallel exchange rate, official exchange rate and real effective exchange rate was modeled on the manufacturing sector output. Vector autoregression techniques and vector error correction mechanism were adopted to explore the macroeconomic determinants of exchange rate fluctuation in Nigeria and to examine the influence of exchange rate volatility on the manufacturing sector output in Nigeria. The exchange rate showed an unstable and volatile movement in Nigeria. Official exchange rate significantly impacted on the manufacturing sector of Nigeria and shock to previous manufacturing sector output caused 60.76% of the fluctuation in the manufacturing sector output in Nigeria. Trade balance, trade openness and net international investments did not significantly determine exchange rate in Nigeria. However, own shock accounted for about 95% of the variation of exchange rate fluctuation in the short-run and long-run. Among other macroeconomic variables, net international investment accounted for about 2.85% variation of the real effective exchange rate fluctuation in the short-run and in the long-run. Monetary authorities should maintain stability of the exchange rates through proper management so as to encourage local production and government should formulate and implement policies that will develop other sectors of the economy as this will widen the country’s revenue base, reduce our over reliance on oil sector for our foreign exchange earnings and in turn reduce the shocks on our domestic economy.

Tax Morale Dimensions Analysis in Portugal and Spain
The reasons that explain different behaviors towards tax obligations in similar countries are not completely understood yet. The main purpose of this paper is to identify and compare the factors that influence tax morale levels in Portugal and Spain. We use data from European Values Study (EVS). Using a sample of 2,652 individuals, a factor analysis was used to extract the underlying dimensions of tax morale of Portuguese and Spanish taxpayers. Based on a factor analysis, the results of this paper show that sociological and behavioral factors, psychological factors and political factors are important for a good understanding of taxpayers’ behavior in Iberian Peninsula. This paper added value relies on the analyses of a wide range of variables and on the comparison between Portugal and Spain. Our conclusions provided insights that tax authorities and politicians can use to better focus their strategies and actions in order to increase compliance, reduce tax evasion, fight underground economy and increase country´s competitiveness.
Risk Management through Controlling in Industrial Enterprises Operating in Slovakia
This report is focused on widening the theoretical knowledge as well as controlling practical application from the risk management point of view, regarding to dynamic business changes that have occurred in Slovakia which recently has been considered to be an environment full of risk and uncertainty. The idea of the report is the proposal of the controlling operation model in the course of risk management process in an enterprise operating in Slovakia, by which the controller is able to identify early risk factors in suggested major areas of the business management upon appropriate business information integration, consecutive control and prognoses and to prepare in time full-value documents in order to suggest measures for reduction thereof. Dealing with risk factors, that can quickly limit the growth potential of the enterprise, is an essential part of managerial activities on each level. This is the reason why mutual unofficial, ergo collegial cooperation of individual departments is necessary for controlling application from the business risk management point of view. An important part of the report is elaborated survey of the most important risk factors existing in major management areas of enterprises operating in Slovakia. The outcome of the performed survey is a catalogue of the most important enterprise risk factors. The catalogue serves for better understanding risk factors affecting the Slovak enterprises, their importance and evaluation.
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