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Article
Publication date: 18 April 2017

Lawrence T. Corrigan and Daphne Rixon

Electric cooperatives may be seen as an alternative form of organizing in the shadow of investor-owned utilities. They are presumed able to meet financial challenges while…

Abstract

Purpose

Electric cooperatives may be seen as an alternative form of organizing in the shadow of investor-owned utilities. They are presumed able to meet financial challenges while simultaneously honoring cooperative principles of member-owners. This paper aims to investigate such a balancing act and conceptualize “key performance indicators” (KPIs) as a dramatic accounting discourse.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a dramaturgical approach to cooperative performance accounting, and claims that KPIs are a simplification of a complex and shifting reality which they also socially construct. Data were gathered from annual financial reports and websites of rural electric cooperatives along with semi-structured interviews conducted with senior cooperative officials.

Findings

The cooperatives in this case study reported a huge number of KPIs. However, this paper reveals that the performance indicators serve impression management goals and operational demands rather than reporting on fulfillment of the “Seven Cooperative Principles” that are fundamental to the cooperative movement.

Research limitations/implications

Extant inquiry regarding electric cooperatives tends toward a positivist research approach and a realist worldview. This overlooks dramatic and critical possibilities of KPIs as a management construction project. Expanding beyond mainstream research, this paper calls attention to artistic production of knowledge and applies a qualitative framework to problematize accounting disclosures.

Originality/value

Prior KPI research has often been instrumental, looking for predictive evidence that KPIs have strategic value as a “tool” for organizations to attain competitive advantage. This paper introduces the notion that performance measures are theatrical, and applies this to rural electric cooperatives, an industry mostly ignored in the academic literature.

Details

Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management, vol. 14 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1176-6093

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Book part
Publication date: 1 March 2007

Jon Abando, Eneka Gallartegi and Jon Rodriguez

This study analyses and presents the main differences that exist in the quality of management as practised by Cooperative and Non-Cooperative companies in the Basque…

Abstract

This study analyses and presents the main differences that exist in the quality of management as practised by Cooperative and Non-Cooperative companies in the Basque Country within the industrial and company services sectors. The results obtained suggest that the quality level of cooperative company management is higher than that shown in the non-cooperative sector, the principal differences in quality of management being related to aspects where the social commitment of a company is reflected. These results prove to be more conclusive within the subgroup of cooperatives that are incorporated within the Mondragon Cooperative Corporation (MCC).

Details

Cooperative Firms in Global Markets
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-7623-1389-1

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Article
Publication date: 7 March 2016

Stéphane Jaumier

While a comparative study of the literature on accounting as a profession and on cooperatives reveals important differences in the values embodied by certified public…

Abstract

Purpose

While a comparative study of the literature on accounting as a profession and on cooperatives reveals important differences in the values embodied by certified public accountants and by cooperators, the purpose of this study is to explore whether such differences lead to an insurmountable incompatibility or may possibly be mitigated and eventually overcome.

Design/methodology/approach

The study focuses on a French public accounting firm’s project to become a worker cooperative. Drawing on methodological insights from actor–network theory (ANT), the study analyses a situation in which the certified public accountants try to convince some cooperators of the merits of their project.

Findings

The case studied suggests that accounting as a profession and cooperatives are irreconcilable. It not only confirms that some of their contrasting features (identified in the literature) are indeed too difficult to overcome but also reveals a new, unforeseen source of tension between certified public accountants and cooperators.

Research limitations/implications

The study calls for further research into the so-far-overlooked relationships between accounting as a profession and cooperatives. It also proposes to extend the usage of ANT in accounting research to the study of accounting as a profession.

Originality/value

While ANT-inspired accounting research has to date shown a dominant interest in successful translation processes, the present study looks at an unsuccessful translation stage.

Details

Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1832-5912

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Article
Publication date: 28 November 2019

Yaffa Moskovich

This paper aims to develop a managerial style typology relevant to kibbutz industry analysis and applicable to all cooperative organizations.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to develop a managerial style typology relevant to kibbutz industry analysis and applicable to all cooperative organizations.

Design/methodology/approach

This study applied qualitative methods to evaluate the organizational biographies of Factories five factories, using open interviews and document analysis.

Findings

The findings show that before privatization took place, these industries were managed according to socialistic democratic principles. Once they became global and capitalistic, some kibbutz industries adopted a business cooperative style that combines features of capitalism and socialism, while others underwent a crisis and opted for a stricter and more bureaucratic managerial style.

Research limitations/implications

This research is based on five case studies; further research is recommended to establish the current typology.

Practical implications

This study shows very clearly that the cooperative business style can be offered for businesses previously operated according to socialistic principles.

Originality/value

This study augments current literature by elucidating the speed with which business activity is conducted according to cooperative principles. It presents a typology relevant to kibbutz industry and cooperative organizations alike, addressing the cooperative managerial, cooperative business and bureaucratic styles, enabling maintenance of normative management that adapts itself to global and capitalistic environments.

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2014

Shadi Sami Ghadban

This study aims to examine the housing cooperative practices employed in the Palestinian territories in the second half of the twentieth century and across diverse…

Abstract

This study aims to examine the housing cooperative practices employed in the Palestinian territories in the second half of the twentieth century and across diverse socio-political circumstances. This approach has been implemented to fulfil the housing needs of Palestinian society. Tracing this movement reveals an intensification of the housing cooperative approach between the years 1958 and 2008. However, in the years since, this practice has declined considerably.

This study discusses and analyses the housing cooperative practices adopted by the Palestinian community after 1956. It explores the stages, principles and concerns that characterise this practice, whether it is an approach that continues to meet a share of the demand for housing people in Palestine and how this practice can continue and receive wider support and recognition. The results of this study could aid in providing a diagnostic database, which in turn might provide a needed boost to the housing cooperative movement in the Palestinian territories.

Details

Open House International, vol. 39 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0168-2601

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Book part
Publication date: 19 June 2020

Ajibola Anthony Akanji

The phenomenon of globalization is a popular and controversial issue that has many facets. According to Lee and Vivarelli 2006), most conversations around globalization…

Abstract

The phenomenon of globalization is a popular and controversial issue that has many facets. According to Lee and Vivarelli 2006), most conversations around globalization tend to describe it in terms of increase in trade and liberalization policies and reduction in transportation costs and technology transfer. Heine and Thakur (2011) opine on globalization as follows:

Many regard globalization as both a desirable and an irreversible engine of commerce that will underpin growing prosperity and a higher standard of living throughout the world. Others recoil from it as the soft underbelly of corporate imperialism that plunders and profiteers on the basis of unrestrained consumerism. (p. 2)

Many regard globalization as both a desirable and an irreversible engine of commerce that will underpin growing prosperity and a higher standard of living throughout the world. Others recoil from it as the soft underbelly of corporate imperialism that plunders and profiteers on the basis of unrestrained consumerism. (p. 2)

The Brundtland Report (1987) was put together in response to agitations over such loses/discontents. This report gave birth to what unarguably is the most popular concept in sustainable development. The Report features the integration of the concerns about strands of development as experienced and as projected across divides, as well as concerns about their interrelationship, and effects on people and the environment. It seeks to reconcile the future with current developments. The recommendations of the report in the end materialized into the millennium development goals (MDGs) in January 2000, which in turn metamorphosed into the sustainable development goals (SDGs) in January 2016. The bulk of the SDGs are to be achieved in the global-south as countries within this categorization including Nigeria have more to do within their territories in order to ensure its actualization. One of the major challenges facing the SDGs in Nigeria is institutionalizing mobilization for the actualization of the goals. Against this backdrop, the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) was launched to bring on board academic institutions, civil societies, non-governmental organizations, and businesses, and mobilize their activities into fewer but more efficient units.

This chapter contextually explores the purpose and roles of the SDSN in Nigeria, and conceptualizes how it will play out for both sustainable development and qualitative participation in globalization. It identified and explored the interface between the three variables of universities: cooperativism, cooperatives, cooperation, and solidarity economics; communities as integral to the actualization of the SDGs; and proportionate participation in globalization. Deficiencies were identified, and remedial actions proffered.

Details

University Partnerships for Sustainable Development
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-643-4

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Article
Publication date: 13 June 2018

Frank Jan De Graaf

The purpose of this paper is to examine the history of the Dutch cooperative Rabobank to understand how the structure of an organisation determines how individual…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the history of the Dutch cooperative Rabobank to understand how the structure of an organisation determines how individual employees validate norms within that organisation.

Design/methodology/approach

Data over an approximately 10-year period starting 25 years ago are analysed, and the value of relating a historical analysis and narrative approach to ethical and institutional theories in economics and management science is demonstrated.

Findings

Regulation in the banking sector appears to have a strong normative aspect. The choice between state and private ownership is based on ideology. The author argues that the private ownership model was based primarily on an ideology surrounding economic efficiency, but that in fact there are other logics that also promote economic development. This contributes to the understanding of the interaction between sector standards, organisational structures and the values of organisations and individual employees. The structure of an organisation enables key employees to deviate slightly from the organisation’s prevailing norms in response to pressures from the wider environment, and those individuals thereby become symbols of that organisation.

Originality/value

The perspective on management history put forward in this paper enables assessing the distinction between normative notions in institutional environments and the organisation as a whole as represented in its governance structure and narratives that key employees disseminate about the organisation. This in turn helps us to understand the interaction between sector standards, organisational characteristics and values represented by individual employees. The author reveals the strong normative impact of banking regulation in line with an older ideological model focused on economic efficiency rather than market logics and the interests of society.

Details

Journal of Management History, vol. 24 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-1348

Keywords

Abstract

Details

Labor Relations in Globalized Food
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-711-5

Content available
Article
Publication date: 28 July 2021

Erwin Stoop, Taco Brandsen and Jan-Kees Helderman

Most research into the relationship between social capital and cooperatives takes social capital as the independent variable and the cooperative as the dependent variable…

Abstract

Purpose

Most research into the relationship between social capital and cooperatives takes social capital as the independent variable and the cooperative as the dependent variable, but as yet the authors know little about causality in the other direction. The purpose of this paper is to examine whether the cooperative structure helps to maintain organizational social capital.

Design/methodology/approach

Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 46 participants from local banks (chairpersons, directors, managers, team leaders and human resources managers).

Findings

Although the cooperative structure formally remained in place, integration into financial markets and digitalization effectively disembedded the organization from its original social context. The cooperative model can only remain distinctive, in terms of how it relates to its clients, under certain institutional conditions.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that scaling, in response to changes in the institutional environment, was an important factor in changing the nature of the organization.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the understanding of the social dynamics of cooperatives in the field of financial services.

Details

Social Enterprise Journal, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-8614

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Book part
Publication date: 27 November 2014

Louis Beaubien and Daphne Rixon

To examine metrics used for performance measurement, analysis, and decision-making by insurance cooperatives.

Abstract

Purpose

To examine metrics used for performance measurement, analysis, and decision-making by insurance cooperatives.

Design and approach

A documentary review and semi-structured interviews of three large insurance cooperatives form the basis of the study.

Findings

The analysis suggests insurance co-operatives metrics are consistent with investor-owned companies. These measures do not recognize the cooperative principles and values which consistent the formative basis of these insurance co-operatives.

Practical implications

The insurance co-operatives under examination do not engage in a comparison to other insurance co-operatives; rather comparisons are made against investor-owned companies. As this analysis is used in decision-making and strategy formulation, guiding the direction of the co-operatives the questions must be raised: does the co-operative difference exist in the insurance sector and how (and what) performance analysis tools are used to assess their performance?

Originality

There is a paucity of research in the area of metrics and analytics of co-operatives. As such this article expands the academic scope of examination of co-operatives in the context of financial and accounting operations. Additionally, it adds to the ongoing discussion in the academy focused on the nature of co-operatives and the nature of the co-operative difference.

Details

Accountability and Social Accounting for Social and Non-Profit Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-004-9

Keywords

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