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Article

Frank Peck, Keith Jackson and Gail Mulvey

The purpose of this paper is to examine the ways in which growth-oriented small and micro-businesses (SMBs) are affected by regulations. Case studies from North-West…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the ways in which growth-oriented small and micro-businesses (SMBs) are affected by regulations. Case studies from North-West England are used to investigate the relationship between attitudes and responses to regulation and the characteristics of business growth.

Design/methodology/approach

This research examines the relationship between regulation and growth using eight case studies of SMBs. The selected cases are proactive in seeking new market opportunities and innovative in terms of product development or business process.

Findings

Case studies confirm that owner-managers of SMBs experience high levels of regulatory burden. However, some growth-oriented businesses also recognise the advantages in being proactive in seeking regulatory knowledge. These advantages were particularly prevalent in cases where growth is driven by product innovation in relatively new product markets.

Research limitations/implications

The study is based on a limited number of case studies in one region of England. Even so, interviews facilitate probing to increase understanding of the underlying reasons for attitudes towards regulation. The cases demonstrate that even very small businesses can use regulatory knowledge as a basis for business growth.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that networking in order to engage with regulatory regimes can generate competitive advantages and open up new market opportunities for small businesses.

Originality/value

This research contributes towards the debate on the impact of regulations on the economy at the micro level and in doing so highlights important nuances in the relationship between business growth and the regulatory environment.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 25 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

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Article

Oludele A. Akinboade and Emilie Kinfack

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the regulation, awareness, compliance and performance of small and medium‐size enterprises (SMEs) in Cameroon's Central and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the regulation, awareness, compliance and performance of small and medium‐size enterprises (SMEs) in Cameroon's Central and Littoral regions, focusing on the manufacturing and retail sectors.

Design/methodology/approach

The full survey was conducted on 700 randomly selected SMEs which have identifiable business locations. From this, only 575 enterprises were retained for analysis after performing the coherence test.

Findings

Businesses registered for tax and those in the manufacturing sector see tax regulation as a burden. Those having opinions that regulation is rigid, inconsistent and that there is corruption also opine that regulation is negatively impacting on business. High compliance with customs and municipal regulations significantly negatively affect business development. On the other hand, high compliance with health and safety as well as trade regulations is good for SME development. Businesses registered with the Ministry of Trade tend to be more compliant, while those registered with the Municipality are not.

Practical implications

Overall, it is important that government should create an enabling environment for the development of the SMEs in Cameroon.

Originality/value

The number of studies focusing on the relationship between regulation and business performance in Africa is limited. Hence, the contribution of this paper is to enrich our understanding of this important field.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 39 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

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Article

Helena Sjögrén and Pasi Syrjä

The purpose of this paper is to learn more about how regulation affects small business in the Finnish context. The authors create a framework for understanding…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to learn more about how regulation affects small business in the Finnish context. The authors create a framework for understanding owner-managers’ attitudes towards business legislation. It is authors’ understanding that not enough is known about how small firms make strategic choices that drive business in a highly regulated environment.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper contributes to the existing knowledge of entrepreneurship and small business management. The empirical data used to test the hypotheses were drawn from the postal survey. Differences between owner-managers’ attitudes towards business regulation were identified with factor and cluster analyses methods.

Findings

Regulation often exerts only a limited influence over owner-managers’ decision-making. Family entrepreneurs are more compliant towards business regulation. Regulation is not too heavy a burden to all in business in Finland, even though Finland is a highly regulated country.

Research limitations/implications

The real impact of regulation on small firms’ performance is really difficult to prove, because small firms operating in the same regulatory context have different performance outcomes. Additionally, often owner-managers’ awareness of specific regulations is limited.

Practical implications

There could be gap between the presumed effect of policymakers and the real effect of regulation among owner-managers. In Finland, policymakers should find other motivations to encourage business than lightening the regulatory burden. They should concentrate more providing external support to small firms in the form of information, training and financing new small firms.

Originality/value

It is authors’ understanding that not enough is known about how small firms make strategic choices that drive business in a highly regulated environment.

Details

International Journal of Law and Management, vol. 57 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-243X

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Article

The Howard Shuttering Contractors case throws considerable light on the importance which the tribunals attach to warnings before dismissing an employee. In this case the…

Abstract

The Howard Shuttering Contractors case throws considerable light on the importance which the tribunals attach to warnings before dismissing an employee. In this case the tribunal took great pains to interpret the intention of the parties to the different site agreements, and it came to the conclusion that the agreed procedure was not followed. One other matter, which must be particularly noted by employers, is that where a final warning is required, this final warning must be “a warning”, and not the actual dismissal. So that where, for example, three warnings are to be given, the third must be a “warning”. It is after the employee has misconducted himself thereafter that the employer may dismiss.

Details

Managerial Law, vol. 19 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0558

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Article

Elena Bárcena-Martín, Samuel Medina-Claros and Salvador Pérez-Moreno

Institutional environment plays a crucial role in determining the nature of entrepreneurship that prevails in an economy. In this paper, the authors address how business

Abstract

Purpose

Institutional environment plays a crucial role in determining the nature of entrepreneurship that prevails in an economy. In this paper, the authors address how business, labour and credit regulations contribute differently to both the overall prevalence of opportunity-driven entrepreneurship (ODE) and its gender gap in high-income and emerging economies.

Design/methodology/approach

On the basis of an unbalanced panel of 41 countries over the period 2005–2016, the authors estimate system generalised method of moment models. The authors also perform an ordinary least square analysis to address gender differences in ODE.

Findings

The authors find that higher credit market liberalisation is especially associated with more entrepreneurship by opportunity. Nevertheless, while credit market regulation stands out as a key element to promote opportunity-based entrepreneurship in both high-income and emerging countries, in the emerging world business regulation is also largely related to the prevalence of opportunity entrepreneurship. In terms of gender gap, business and labour market freedom seem to exert an equalising effect on the divide in entrepreneurship by opportunity, specifically in emerging economies.

Originality/value

Findings allow the identification of regulatory policy reform priorities to enhance the prevalence of ODE depending on the level of a country's development. They also identify which specific areas of economic regulation would speed up closing the gender gap in opportunity entrepreneurship.

Details

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2554

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Article

Ryan M. Yonk, Kayla Harris, R. Chistopher Martin and Barrett Anderson

Small and emerging business failure rates are high for numerous reasons. Government regulation has been cited as a contributing factor, yet literature documenting the…

Abstract

Purpose

Small and emerging business failure rates are high for numerous reasons. Government regulation has been cited as a contributing factor, yet literature documenting the actual effects of government regulation on small business is limited. The purpose of this paper is to clearly outline the regulatory compliance costs and effects on small businesses in the California dairy industry.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper applies a public choice framework to the history of dairy regulation and performs a case study on a small business, The White Moustache (TWM). The case study traces the burdens and costs of state dairy regulations placed on TWM as they sought the necessary permits to sell their artisan yogurt.

Findings

Strict and unresponsive regulation restricted TWM from selling their product. To comply with state dairy regulations, the direct costs to TWM would have increased by 70 percent. In addition, regulation caused two and a half years of delay before the company decided to leave the state. California’s dairy regulations place burdens on small dairy businesses that work as a strategic barrier to entry in the marketplace.

Originality/value

This case study highlights the direct effects that strict and unresponsive regulation can have on entrepreneurs and emerging businesses through a case study. Improving the understanding of how regulation affects small business can highlight new paths forward and help improve the small business failure rate in the USA.

Details

Journal of Entrepreneurship and Public Policy, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2045-2101

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Article

Alistair R. Anderson and Ellina O. Russell

Regulations and complying with regulation are a considerable burden on small firms, which consistently report that regulation is an obstacle to growth. Regulation for

Abstract

Purpose

Regulations and complying with regulation are a considerable burden on small firms, which consistently report that regulation is an obstacle to growth. Regulation for small business includes financial and psychological costs and worry about non‐compliance. Accordingly, regulation inflation raises increasing difficulties in understanding and complying with new regulation. Time and resources are diverted from running or growing the business. This paper explores self‐regulation as a mechanism for resolving the problems of regulation.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors first sets out the “regulation problem” as seen by the research community and by small business. The analysis explores the issues associated with small business regulation and compliance. They show that “imposed” regulation is expensive and may not be very effective. They continue by examining the nature of self‐regulation and consider a case study: the auto trade.

Findings

Self‐regulation can have beneficial effects. All regulation need not be top down control and command and self‐regulation can be effective if done well.

Practical implications

Self‐regulation seems to offer a number of advantages over legislation for small businesses, but it appears that a number of conditions need to be met if they are to be seen as effective. The authors discuss the implications and benefits of SFROs as an alternative way of assuring regulatory compliance.

Originality/value

Self‐regulation presents an attractive solution to some of the problems encountered by small business regulation through providing a credible, flexible and cost effective alternative to command and control legislation.

Details

Journal of Business Strategy, vol. 32 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0275-6668

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Article

Boonlert Jitmaneeroj

Despite their important role for small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) policy reform, the individual scores of the ten categories of business regulations in the World…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite their important role for small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) policy reform, the individual scores of the ten categories of business regulations in the World Bank’s Doing Business report are often overshadowed by the equal-weighted overall score and ease of doing business ranking. The purpose of this paper is to examine the causal interrelations between category scores and pinpoint the critical categories for reform.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on the latest 2016 Doing Business report, this paper applies the four-stage integrative framework to investigate the causal relationships between category scores and the overall score for business regulations for SMEs. The four-stage analysis includes cluster analysis, data mining, partial least square path modeling, and importance-performance map analysis (IPMA).

Findings

The overall score for business regulations is not only influenced by the direct effects of the category scores but also by the indirect effects of the causal interrelations between these scores. The IPMA suggests that policy-makers should examine the priorities of the category scores before making a decision about business regulatory reforms for SMEs. This paper suggests that policy-makers should allocate resources in order of priority – to resolving insolvency, getting credit, trading across borders, registering property, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, enforcing contracts, getting electricity, dealing with construction permits, and, finally, starting a business.

Originality/value

This four-stage methodology is the first attempt to construct a roadmap for business regulatory reforms for SMEs that addresses the problem of equal weighting and subjective causal relationships between category scores.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 23 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

Keywords

Content available
Book part

Oliver Mallett

This chapter examines the interactions of formal and informal forms of small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) business support, characterised as interactions within an…

Abstract

This chapter examines the interactions of formal and informal forms of small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) business support, characterised as interactions within an ‘enterprise industry’. An analysis of the interactions revealed in the existing literature for different forms of business support develops a new conceptual framework for understanding those varied forms of external influence targeted at SMEs that constitute and extend a ‘patchwork quilt’ of provision. This chapter focusses on how different forms of support and advice interact, the centrality of state influence and how such interactions can be considered part of a firm’s regulatory context. This conceptualisation allows the consideration of both business support and state regulations to move beyond conceptions of positive or negative impacts on factors such as firm growth. Instead, it establishes a conceptual lens for considering how the different forms of external influence can shape the practices and attitudes of SMEs and their owner-managers. Policy makers and organisations within the enterprise industry seeking to develop effective forms of support or regulation should not consider such activities in isolation or in simple, decontextualised positive or negative terms.

Details

Creating Entrepreneurial Space: Talking Through Multi-Voices, Reflections on Emerging Debates
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-577-1

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Article

Timothy Eccles and John Pointing

The paper explores theories of regulation by examining their consistency and fit with the development of smart regulation, better regulation and self‐regulation. It…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper explores theories of regulation by examining their consistency and fit with the development of smart regulation, better regulation and self‐regulation. It achieves this through the use of two case studies. Building control is offered as an example of deregulation, the 1980s approach to “smart” regulation, whilst the Primary Authority scheme is provided as an example of current thinking. The paper develops an explanation of how these shifting regulatory architectures have generated current views of how to manage the issue of regulation and then proposes a framework to explain how professional and local authority regulation works and can be made to work better.

Design/methodology/approach

Analytical, as a preliminary to testing theoretical constructs by further empirical research. The paper examines case studies to draw out the drivers for regulatory practice and then establishes a model from this as the basis for further work.

Findings

The use of Giddens's concept of Late Modernity is useful in describing the loss of authority by traditional regulators and explaining the adoption of “smart” regulation by others seeking to dominate regulation. A lack of theoretical definition as to what is meant by smart regulation can be countered by the development of constructs, such as the regulatory “triptych” developed here.

Practical implications

The development of a structure for professional and local authority regulation allows researchers to place developments in smart regulation in context. It also allows those newly emerging dominant authorities, in Giddens's terms, to be encouraged to develop a higher quality form of regulation.

Originality/value

The paper generates a grounded set of concepts that have explanatory efficacy.

Details

International Journal of Law in the Built Environment, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-1450

Keywords

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