• An Institutional Perspective on Entrepreneurship in a Conflict Environment: Evidence from Pakistan

      Muhammad, Noor; Ullah, Farid; Warren, Lorraine; Ghulam Ishaq Khan Institute (GIKI) Pakistan; University of Chester; Massey University, New Zealand (Emerald, 2016-06-02)
      Purpose In this paper, an institutional perspective is used to examine the different kinds of pressures on entrepreneurs manifest in a conflict environment. The study investigates how they respond to the conflict and establish legitimacy for their entrepreneurship in the challenging context of the north western areas of Pakistan. Design/methodology/approach In this study, a qualitative approach is taken based on semi-structured interviews from 16 different firms in the SWAT valley. Findings The entrepreneurs undertake different strategies towards dealing with conflict and establishing legitimacy. These strategies are identified and examined in relation to the interactions between entrepreneurial behaviour and institutional pressures. Research limitations/implications Qualitative research on a small sample inevitably presents a limitation on the generalisability of this work. Further research could employ quantitative methods to address this issue. One particular location is studied, so future research could be carried out in other countries or regions with similar problems. Practical implications The study may have value for policy makers who need to know more about how to support ongoing businesses in conflictual regions. Social implications Better understanding of the needs of small business may in time contribute to a better business climate in conflictual regions. Originality/value A new dimension is added to institutional theory through its application in the very uncertain environment between all out war and ongoing violence, identifying the possibility of weak agency for institutional change. Further, the study contributes to the growing body of literature on entrepreneurship in conflict environments. Keywords: Conflict, institutions, SMEs, Pakistan, entrepreneur, legitimacy Paper Type: Research paper
    • An Overview of Modern China's Changing Economy,Business & Managemnt Video Collection, Sage Publications

      Harris, Phil; University of Chester (SAGE, 2016-08-01)
      Professor Phil Harris discusses modern China and its changing economy. China's economy is a large consumer economy with a rising middle class, and it is emerging as a tourist destination
    • Animal cruelty, foie gras, pigeons, aid policy and public affairs

      Harris, Phil; University of Chester (Wiley, 2016-11-22)
      This is a general issue of the Journal of Public Affairs. It includes articles examining a range of subjects, from development aid policy to concern about perception of pigeons and policy towards specialist products.
    • Are we any closer to sustainable development? Listening to active stakeholder discourses of tourism development in the Waterberg Biosphere Reserve, South Africa.

      Lyon, Andrew; Hunter-Jones, Philippa; Warnaby, Gary; University of Chester; University of Liverpool; Manchester Metropolitan University (Elsevier, 2017-02-24)
      ‘Biosphere reserve’ is a United Nations (UN) designation stipulating that a region should attempt to follow the principles of sustainable development (SD). This paper adopts a stakeholder analysis framework to analyse the discourses of those tourism stakeholders who can actively affect SD in the Waterberg Biosphere Reserve (WBR), South Africa. Adopting an inductive qualitative methodology generated multiple research themes which were subsequently analysed using critical discourse analysis (CDA) techniques. These themes indicate that seeking SD in biosphere reserves is problematical when there are distinct ideological differences between active stakeholder groups and power relations are unequal. Adopting CDA allows us to make some sense of why this is the case as the technique appreciates not only how tourism development occurs, but also why it occurs in a particular way. This paper adds to the literature on stakeholder analysis in tourism specifically and also has wider implications for SD more generally.
    • Automated Hyperlink Text Analysis of City Websites: Projected Image Representation on the Web

      Weismayer, Christian; Pezenka, Ilona; Loibl, Wilhelm (Springer International Publishing Switzerland, 2016-01-23)
      The objective of this study is to identify the image representations of 75 European cities on the Web. As an effective image positioning strategy will result in successful differentiation from competitors, it is crucial for tourism destinations to regularly examine their image. This study focuses on the supply-side of destination image formation and is therefore concerned with analysing the projected destination image. Hyperlink text of DMO websites was collected automatically by a crawler. The text was then edited and filtered. Latent semantic dimensions were generated by applying PCA. A hierarchical cluster approach revealed different groups of hyperlink terms. Finally, the co-occurrence of terms and cities was displayed in a joint-map indicating which groups of hyperlink terms are over- or underrepresented for each of the cities. This information permits conclusions regarding the projected image of the cities.
    • Behavioural Economics and Social Economics: Opportunities for an Expanded Curriculum

      Manning, Paul; University of Chester (Emerald, 2019-08-12)
      The Global Financial Crisis (GFC) undermined the legitimacy of orthodox economic assumptions, which nevertheless continue to frame business school pedagogy. In consequence, there is an opportunity for socio-economic insights to be more fully incorporated into the business school curriculum. This article reports and reflects on a socio-economic case study that was delivered to MBA students. The article demonstrates that the developing literature on behavioural economics has the potential to enhance students’ social-economic understanding of key areas of the curriculum. The paper presents an inter-disciplinary socio-economic teaching case that was informed by insights from behavioural economics. The teaching case concerned a socio-economic understanding of corruption and white-collar crime. It was also inter-disciplinary to include inputs from business history and criminology. The aim of the teaching case was to develop an appreciation among students that corruption and white-collar crime can be analyzed within a social economics lens. The teaching case example discussed in this article offered an alternative socio-economic understanding to core areas of the MBA curriculum, enabling students to apply a behavioural economic approach to corruption and more generally to white-collar-crime. The findings derived from this case study is that behavioural l economics has the potential to enhance the teaching of socio-economics. The GFC presents an opportunity to re-shape the business school curriculum to acknowledge the centrality of socio-economics and consequently to offer an alternative to the dominant ontological assumptions -taken from the economic understanding of rationality-that have previously under-pinned business school pedagogy. The originality of this article is to apply behavioural economics to a socio-economic teaching case studies in core subject areas of the MBA curriculum.
    • Benchlearning; Good Examples as a Lever for Development, Book Review

      Manning, Paul; The University of Liverpool
      Book Review
    • Beyond learning by doing: an exploration of critical incidents in outdoor leadership education

      Hickman, Mark; Stokes, Peter; UCLan and University of Chester (Taylor and Francis, 2015-08-03)
      This paper argues that outdoor leader education and training is generally characterized by the development of procedural skills at the expense of equally crucial but usually ignored, ‘soft skills’ (for example, contextualized decision making and reflection). Consequently, this risks producing practitioners with a potentially unsophisticated and limited awareness of the holistic outdoor environments and situations and an over-reliance on ‘how to’ skills which may, in turn, impede the development of links between theory and practice. This paper analyses a research project that undertook the application of critical incident theory to a study of undergraduates in a United Kingdom outdoor leadership degree programme in an attempt to promote and examine the processes of developing ‘softer’ reflective skills in the students. In addition, the paper’s argument and data, while not directly dealing with wider audiences (clients and national qualification bodies), provide inferences and allusions to potential consequent enhanced development and benefits of heightened reflective understanding and practice to these groups. Methodologically, the study examines a range of critical incidents in a purposive homogenous sample of 20 students from a vocational undergraduate outdoor studies course. Students were asked to identify and reflect on critical incidents in practice settings of their own choice. These settings spanned a range of contexts from outdoor centre work in the United Kingdom to assistant leadership positions on educational expeditions in remote locations overseas. Qualitative data analysis was carried out through the use of Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). The findings supported the conceptual premise and indicated that outdoor leadership programmes need to develop a broader and holistic skills base rather than persist with the extant predilection towards primarily physical and technical skills. Allusion is made to the suggestion that this could ultimately potentially enhance effectiveness with clients and employability prospects. In summary, a focus on critical incident method early in education and training processes has the potential to equip practitioners with the holistic and complex set of skills required in the contemporary outdoor workplace.
    • Brand personality: Theory and dimensionality

      Davies, Gary; Rojas-Mendez, Jose I.; Whelan, Susan; Mete, Melisa; Loo, Theresa; University of Chester (Emerald, 2018-03-12)
      Purpose: To critique human personality as theory underpinning brand personality. To propose instead theory from human perception and, by doing so, to identify universally relevant dimensions. Design/Method: A review of published measures of brand personality, a re-analysis of two existing data bases and the analysis of one new database are used to argue and test for the dimensions derived from perception theory. Findings: Existing work on brand personality suggests 16 separate dimensions for the construct but some appear common to most measures. When non-orthogonal rotation is used to reanalyse existing trait data on brand personality, three dimensions derived from signalling and associated theory can emerge: Sincerity (e.g. warm, friendly, agreeable), Competence (e.g. competent, effective, efficient) and Status (e.g. prestigious, elegant, sophisticated). The first two are common to most measures, status is not. Research Implications: Three dimensions derived from signalling and associated theory are proposed as generic, relevant to all contexts and cultures. They can be supplemented by context relevant dimensions. Practical Implications: Measures of these three dimensions should be included in all measures of brand personality. Originality: Prior work on brand personality has focussed on identifying apparently new dimensions for the construct. While most work is not theoretically based, some have argued for the relevance of human personality. That model is challenged and an alternative approach to both theory and analysis is proposed and successfully tested. Keywords: Brand personality; signalling theory; stereotype content model; brand image.
    • Brexit Background Report - Meadow Foods

      Pownall, Ian; Chester Business School (2018-08-15)
      This is a Brexit briefing paper written for Meadow Foods. It offers a context for the senior staff meeting (15th August 2018) and to provide insights into the current known state of Brexit negotiations so that it might inform Meadows’ senior staff on potential contingency planning and implications. The paper seeks to adopt the goals of scenario analysis that challenge and prompt mindsets so as to encourage senior staff to reflect on patterns of understanding and thinking. The paper adopts a largely political economic viewpoint whilst also stressing potential trade impacts. It does this specifically to convey an understanding of the negotiating positions adopted by the UK and European Union (EU). Where possible and feasible, specific market insights are offered.
    • Business and organizational development: Global perspectives, cultures and domains

      Moore, Neil; Stokes, Peter; University of Chester (Inderscience Publishers, 2014)
      Recent years have seen an acceleration of alternative approaches to, and appreciations of, business and organisational development. Approaches focusing on cognitive elements, behavioural aspects and critical perspectives have emerged and become established in the mainstream. In turn, these approaches have facilitated and supported alternative domains, such as organisational learning, sustainability, social and environmental responsibility and gender issues. Contemporary organisational leaders are realising that, in order to cope with the complex and chaotic environments they face, alternative approaches and considerations are needed. This special issue provides space to explore and examine a number of these contexts through specific domains and issues. It achieves this by developing a range of perspectives, both epistemologically and geographically related, and presents case studies that focus on a range of emerging markets, sectors and approaches.
    • Case Histories in Business Ethics by Megone, C. & Robinson, S. J., Book Review

      Manning, Paul; The University of Liverpool
      Book Review
    • Challenges and Issues facing Ethnic Minority Small Business Owners: The Scottish experience

      Ullah, Farid; Rahman, Zillur; Thompson, Piers; University of Chester (SAGE, 2018-01-23)
      Abstract Studies investigating the challenges and barriers faced by ethnic minority entrepreneurs have often concentrated on areas where there is a large supportive ethnic minority community. Less work has been conducted on the experience of those entrepreneurs operating in cities where such ethnic resources may be less widely available. Considered from the perspective of mixed embeddedness framework, this study uses face-to-face interviews with 25 ethnic minority entrepreneurs to gain a greater understanding of the constraints experienced by the starting and running businesses in one such location, the Scottish city of Aberdeen in the United Kingdom. Although issues found by previous studies such as access to funding remain an issue, the entrepreneurs indicated problems with access to labour as United Kingdom Border Agency’s immigration rules and tightening of the Post Study Work visa have had a profound effect on these entrepreneurs. The results imply that the weakening of the ethnic resource microsphere has not opened up opportunities which are exploited by the entrepreneurs, but they have still been exposed to external forces from the regulatory macrosphere. Both entrepreneurs and policymakers need to think carefully about the retention, training and recruitment of staff. In particular, the wider ramifications of immigration rule changes need to be considered, but also whether entrepreneurs need to be more open to the potential of recruiting non-ethnic employees and if so what support is required to achieve this.
    • Chester Forum VII. "The Northern Powerhouse and Developing World-Class Competitiveness" Proceedings, Wednesday 11 May 2016 Boardroom, MBNA, Chester Business Park

      Harris, Phil; Sidsaph, Henry; Zhao, Y.; Okeke, C.; University of Chester (Business Research Institute, University of Chester, 2016-10-27)
      Proceedings of this major regional conference
    • Cognitive Influences shaping Grade Decision Making

      Pownall, Ian; Kennedy, Victoria; University of Chester; Liverpool Hope University (Emerald, 2019-04-01)
      Whilst the marking process is a well explored area, there is limited analysis of the influences that shape the intention grading decision at the point at which it is made. This can be particularly important when those influences may vary during the marking process making reflective analyses also difficult to explore. We draw upon a small sample of assessed scripts from two UK HEIs and undertake a factor analysis of potentially important influences that shape the grading decision at the cognitive point it is made. Our findings indicate that for the sample analysed, the markers most important influences were those associated with the normative view of marking although they also suggest potential influences from when the script was graded and the fatigue of the marker concerned. Our findings indicate that for the sample analysed, the markers most important influences were those associated with the normative view of marking although they also suggest potential influences from when the script was graded and the fatigue of the marker concerned. The work is confined to undergraduate management students and limited by the sample size.A factor analysis reveals the cluster of influences that contribute to observed grade outcomes, but provides less clarity upon relative interdependencies between those factors.There are additional constraints in that the constructed data collection tool was self administered. The data collection instrument (VBA Excel workbook) is we believe, quite innovative in capturing immediate cognitive reflections. It could be developed for other decision making research. We also believe there are staff developmental outcomes from the work, to sustain and enhance assurance in the grading process. As far as we can determine, research that has explored the influences shaping grading and mark allocation tends to be reflective or after the event. Our research data is constructed at the same time as the grade / mark is determined.
    • The complementarities of Digitalization and Productivity: Redefining Boundaries for Financial Sector

      Gul, Razia; Ellahi, Nazima; Leong, Kelvin; Malik, Qaiser; University of Chester; Foundation University, Pakistan (Taylor & Francis, 2021-12-21)
      Digitalisation is portrayed as a transformative force, remodelling the way we live and businesses operate. In today's unprecedented business environment, the survival of organisations is in technological advancement and online presence. When masses rely on digital financial payments, there is a pressing need for the financial sector to offer innovative products and services to meet customers’ needs and achieve sustainable performance. This paper aims to investigate the impact of data analytics on the productivity of banks in Pakistan and employed two-step system generalised methods of moments for estimation. The findings suggest that 5.9% productivity is increased for banks that invested in data analytics on average. It was also found that productivity increase is associated with an investment in data analytics compared to a mere investment in any software. However, the moderating role of dynamic capabilities on the relationship between data analytics and banks’ productivity is insignificant, which raises a question on the relevance of research and development expense with human capital development. It is recommended that banks should invest in those analytics that have predictive, visualising and analytical capabilities. The use of these innovative technologies should be combined with training and human capital development to ensure sustainable firm performance.
    • The Contrarian’s Guide to Leadership, Book Review

      Manning, Paul; The University of Liverpool
      Book Review
    • Creative problem solving for managers: Developing skills for decision making and innovation

      Proctor, Tony (Routledge, 2005-06-06)
      This book discusses the importance of creativity in business, theories of creative problem solving, brainstorming, lateral thinking, computer assisted problem solving, and how to implement ideas.
    • Critical discourse analysis and the questioning of dominant, hegemonic discourses of sustainable tourism in the Waterberg Biosphere Reserve, South Africa

      Lyon, Andrew; Hunter-Jones, Philippa; University of Chester; University of Liverpool (Taylor & Francis, 2019-01-14)
      The aim of this paper is to demonstrate how critical discourse analysis (CDA), an under-utilised methodological approach, can be used to critically question the dominant, hegemonic discourses surrounding sustainable development and sustainable tourism development. The Waterberg Biosphere Reserve in South Africa provides the study context. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide the framework for review, sustainable development an integral part of this framework. This research study examines three SDGs in particular: discourses surrounding SDG 4 (quality education), SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth) and SDG 15 (life on land). Interviews (n=35) were conducted, in South Africa, with multiple stakeholder groups. CDA techniques were applied to data analysis to examine the sustainable development/sustainable tourism discourses attached to the SDGs under review. Neoliberal discourses linked to the economy, the environment, and a sustaining of the tourism industry through top-down planning and unequal power distributions emerged. Conclusions reflect both upon the opportunities utilising a tool such as CDA presents, along with the limitations to take account of in applying it. CDA applications which explore SDGs by listening to the voices of the poor are suggested as one avenue for further research.
    • Crowdfunding industry—History, development, policies, and potential issues

      Zhao, Ying; Harris, Phil; Lam, Wing; University of Chester (Wiley, 2019-03-14)
      Crowdfunding has gained a great deal of attention from policy makers, researchers, and practitioners. This paper attempts to provide an overview of the history and development of the industry and discusses different types of crowdfunding and their public policies. It is identified that the operation of peer‐to‐peer lending and equity‐ based crowdfunding is regulated by the Financial Authority; the reward‐based crowdfunding (RBC) and donation‐based crowdfunding (DBC) is yet to be regulated, neither in the United Kingdom or United States. The lack of rules and regulations in the latter two models highlights the burning issues such as potential fraud and mal- practice. Therefore, we suggest that it is timely to consider regulating the two types of crowdfunding possibly by governance mechanism with reporting requirements to keep track of the fund and to provide timely information. Additionally, it is advisable that practitioners to work on an agreed framework to establish industry standard, so potential investors can compare and assess the quality of projects easily. Finally, the management of crowdfunding platforms especially the RBC and DBC platforms should be improved. The ease of launching campaigns has made it difficult for both initiators and investors to succeed in the crowdfunding process. Further research to develop some form of assessment framework would be useful to both parties.