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The paper focuses on the question of the extent to which individual preference-based values are suitable in guiding environmental policy and damage assessment decisions…
The paper focuses on the question of the extent to which individual preference-based values are suitable in guiding environmental policy and damage assessment decisions. Three criteria for “suitableness” are reviewed: conceptual, moral and legal. Their discussion suggests that: (i) the concept of economic value as applied to environmental resources is a meaningful concept based on the notion of trade-off; (ii) the limitations of the moral foundations of cost-benefit analysis do not invalidate its use as a procedure for guiding environmental decision making; (iii) the input of individual preferences into damage assessment is compatible with the basic foundations of tort law; (iv) using individual preference-based methods provides incentives for efficient levels of due care; (v) determining standing is still very contentious for various categories of users as well as for aggregating non-use values. Overall, the discussion suggests that the use of preference-based approaches in both the policy and legal arenas is warranted provided that they are accurately applied, their limitations are openly acknowledged and they assume an information-providing rather than a determinative role.
An experiment is undertaken to assess how the level of information provided to survey groups impacts upon the decisions they make. In this experiment, a group of experts…
An experiment is undertaken to assess how the level of information provided to survey groups impacts upon the decisions they make. In this experiment, a group of experts is surveyed first to determine both the forms and levels of information important to them regarding an obscure environmental resource (remote mountain lakes), as well as their ranking of particular examples of these resources in accordance with their own criteria. Then three different groups of respondents are given different levels of this information to assess how their WTP for the resources responds to varying levels of this information, and how their rankings of the different goods alters with the information provided. The study reports evidence that generally increased levels of information provide significant quantitative changes in aggregate WTP (the enhancement effect), as well as a credible impact on their ranking of the various goods. On closer examination, much of the enhancement effect appears to be attributable to the changes in ranking, and to changes in the WTP for a single lake at each level of information. In addition the ranking does not respond in any consistent or coherent fashion during the experiment until the information provided is complete, including a ranking of subjectively reported importance by the expert group, and then the survey group converges upon the expert's group rankings. In sum, the experiment generates evidence that is both consistent with the anticipated effects of increased levels of information but also consistent with the communication of information-embedded preferences of the expert group. It may not be possible to communicate expert-provided information to survey groups without simultaneously communicating their preferences.
In the earlier part of the twentieth century, cost–benefit (CBA) or benefit–cost analysis was used as a vehicle by Congress to curtail its wasteful spending, by using the Army Corp of Engineers to examine Congressional projects using CBA. Theodore Porter here examines the rise of the use of CBA in historical context and finds that the Corp was highly successful in reducing wasteful spending. Regardless of the present day effectiveness of the Corps, CBA currently provides valuable service. To appreciate this one need look no further than the effect Arnold Harberger's work and students have had in less developed countries, and at the several hundred useful evaluations of social programs produced over the last several years. Finally, one can look, criticisms of Ackerman and Heinzerling notwithstanding, at many of the analyses of environmental programs.
Firm size is an important contingency variable in macro-organizational studies. Several questions arise in relation to knowledge management and organizational size that is…
Firm size is an important contingency variable in macro-organizational studies. Several questions arise in relation to knowledge management and organizational size that is critical to both public and private organizations. Unfortunately, despite its significance, all or most of the studies that examined the effects of organizational size’ on knowledge management have been in the private sector. This paper aims to empirically study the effects of organizational size on the key knowledge management processes and subsequent operational efficiency derived from its implementation in the public sector.
A structured country-wide survey of United Arab Emirates public sector organizations was conducted. The 383 completed responses obtained were then analysed to assess the hypothesized differences in the implementation of knowledge management processes (knowledge acquisition, knowledge creation, knowledge capture, knowledge storage and retrieval, knowledge sharing, knowledge utilization) and its impact on the operational efficiency across small and medium, large and very large public sector organizations.
The results revealed that the extent of implementation of all six knowledge management processes and operational efficiency followed an inverted “V” pattern, in which, both knowledge management processes and operational efficiency was found to increase while transitioning from small and medium entities to large entities, but was found to decrease while transitioning from large to very large entities. In terms of relationships, while all knowledge management processes had a significant positive impact on the operational efficiency of the public sector, the ability to derive operational efficiency from knowledge management processes was found to be the highest for very large public sector organizations.
The novel findings are useful for practitioners and policymakers, especially those overseeing a country’s knowledge management initiatives to devise strategies, policies and support mechanisms to ensure public sector organizations, regardless of their size, can implement efficient and effective knowledge management processes to improve their operational efficiency.
The study is arguably the first comprehensive attempt to understand the impact of organizational size on knowledge management in the public sector.