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Article
Publication date: 9 July 2018

Caterina Cavicchi and Emidia Vagnoni

The purpose of this paper is to shed light on the role of and relationships between human, structural and relational capital assets for strategic management in a farm…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to shed light on the role of and relationships between human, structural and relational capital assets for strategic management in a farm business. In particular, it analyzes the interaction between human capital’s creativity skills and the introduction of climate-smart technologies for the competitiveness of the firm.

Design/methodology/approach

An explorative case study was conducted on one of the largest Italian farm businesses to gain an understanding of the drivers of intellectual capital (IC) and of their implications for strategic management. Full-time employees’ perception of the skills required to achieve strategic goals and their perception of whether they possessed these abilities were investigated to determine if an alignment was present. The skills were subsequently classified using the framework of Amabile (1988) into domain-relevant and creativity-relevant skills. Then, two linear regression models were used to investigate the effects of training on the acquisition of these two sets of skills.

Findings

The analysis confirmed the strategic role of interactions among human capital assets to effectively exploit the structural capital of the company. When investigating employees’ perceptions, a gap emerged about informatics capabilities and knowledge of soils. As the company’s investments in innovation are oriented to ICT technologies, the company could strengthen informatics training to enable its employees to implement effective innovation.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the literature on IC by highlighting the role of interconnections of assets to align organizations with their strategic goals. Therefore, the provision of IC accounting contributes to the strategic management of human capital.

Details

Journal of Intellectual Capital, vol. 19 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1469-1930

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 4 June 2018

Caterina Cavicchi and Emidia Vagnoni

This paper aims to analyze the process of implementation of a sustainability performance measurement (SPM) system by a North Italian university, which was constructed…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to analyze the process of implementation of a sustainability performance measurement (SPM) system by a North Italian university, which was constructed based on a participatory multi-stakeholders’ approach. In addition, it provides evidence on the use of outcome indicators.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology is based on a single exploratory case study research.

Findings

The process of implementation of the new SPM system started with the intervention of an academic in accounting who acted as a propeller. The adoption of the framework required a shared meaning of sustainability among different stakeholders and indicators to track the shift toward sustainable development (SD). Despite the authors could not prove the stable adoption of the framework for the future, as new governing bodies were appointed in Beta, that framework could be considered a valid attempt to move from a single projects’ evaluation on sustainability performance to a systemic approach and introduce outcome indicators in performance appraisal. The framework supported university’s decision-making related to SD actions.

Research limitations/implications

Difficulties in the measurement process were linked to the information system which was not designed to allow the collection of some of the newly introduced sustainability data. However, an attempt to introduce a personalized assessment tool fostered the improvement of planning activities for 2015.

Originality/value

The originality of the paper is twofold: first, it represents an attempt to discuss the process of implementation of a SPM system that was designed by a participatory multi-stakeholders’ approach. Second, the framework was designed to consider also outcomes’ indicators as urged by scholars calling universities to promote the shift toward a sustainable society.

Details

Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, vol. 14 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1832-5912

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Caterina Cavicchi

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of intellectual capital (IC) in promoting the sustainable development (SD) program of the Emilia-Romagna Health…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of intellectual capital (IC) in promoting the sustainable development (SD) program of the Emilia-Romagna Health Service. The contributions of the following assets were investigated: leadership and competences, culture, performance measurement and incentives systems, social capital and technologies.

Design/methodology/approach

The case study was conducted following a hierarchical approach: perceptions of the regional directorate of public and social health, the general directors and healthcare professionals of the regional health system (the setting) were analyzed through interviews, focus groups and documentation in order to investigate: the emerging definition of SD within the setting; the role of IC, if any, in the achievement of the regional SD goals.

Findings

SD culture did not expand at the operative level because of the lack of involvement of healthcare professionals in a permanent dialogue for sustainability. Sustainability projects were not systematic which restricted the development of staff awareness of sustainability issues. Social capital enabled environmental projects and medical projects that increased patients’ involvement in disease management. Technology could help the shift toward sustainability, but it requires consideration of tangible and intangible costs for its successful adoption. SD performance measurement and incentives were in their infancy and cost accounting continues to dominate the healthcare sustainability debate.

Research limitations/implications

Despite the low number of healthcare professionals involved in the focus groups, the paper represents one of the first attempts to frame their perceptions on SD implementation in healthcare.

Practical implications

Regional institutions should consider new ways of enacting SD which should be more inclusive of healthcare professionals. The establishment of a permanent interdisciplinary dialogue on sustainability would develop human, social and structural capital for sustainability. Healthcare organizations should monitor the environmental and social effects of their operations to enact their primary mission: the promotion of health.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to theory development related to the role of IC for SD in the public sector context and, in particular, in the healthcare sector where evidence is currently limited.

Details

Journal of Intellectual Capital, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1469-1930

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 2 March 2015

Emidia Vagnoni and Caterina Cavicchi

This paper aims to outline the current status of the implementation of sustainability practices in the context of Italian public universities, highlighting the strengths…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to outline the current status of the implementation of sustainability practices in the context of Italian public universities, highlighting the strengths and gaps.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a qualitative approach, an exploratory study design has been outlined using the model of Glavič and Lukman (2007) focusing on the Deming Cycle. The Plan–Do–Check–Act components of the model were used as a framework for collecting and analyzing data from the official Web sites and other related Web pages of Italian universities.

Findings

The results of this exploratory study allow one to depict a university system addressing the challenge posed by international agendas in a fragmented way, even if many universities are showing a strong commitment to the sustainability challenge. Sustainability is mainly detected at the “Do” dimension, when referring to training programs and research projects associated to the sustainability issue.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations of the data collection method are addressed when the timeliness of update of Web sources and the different emphases that universities can put on Internet disclosure are considered. However, the study contributes to the debate on sustainability by providing findings at a national level, which were derived from the official Web sites of Italian public universities. Furthermore, the study could have implications for policy makers and universities’ decision makers.

Practical implications

The study points out the importance of managing the sustainability process in all its phases (planning, activities, monitoring, further actions), and highlights the elements that are relevant for measuring and monitoring the process of implementation of sustainability in the specific context of higher education.

Social implications

The paper can contribute to increase the academics’ awareness of the sustainability actions, and stimulate them to fill the gaps.

Originality/value

This study explores sustainability issue in the Italian university system, and it is based on a Web-based method of data collection, whereas other contributions are based on case studies.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. 16 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 20 February 2017

Abstract

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 30 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Abstract

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 119 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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