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Book part
Publication date: 4 January 2012

Azhdar Karami

The idea that environmental scanning can be a key factor in sustained competitive advantage calls for the integration of business strategy and the environment. Not…

Abstract

The idea that environmental scanning can be a key factor in sustained competitive advantage calls for the integration of business strategy and the environment. Not surprisingly, environmental scanning is widely viewed as the first step in the process that links strategy and the environment. The main debate over the roles of strategy and environment is nowadays concerned with the primary importance of environmental scanning to strategy formulation and implementation. More specially, effective scanning of the environment is seen as necessary to the successful alignment of competitive strategies with environmental requirements and the achievement of outstanding performance in small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). This chapter explores the above relationship in the British electronic manufacturing industry. It is based on the empirical evidence and the findings of a survey of 132 Chief Executive Officers’ (CEO) views on environmental scanning and strategy in SMEs. It is concluded that there is a significant relationship between increasing the environmental scanning of the firm, and the success of small- and medium-sized manufacturing firms in electronic industry. Accordingly, because of the dynamic nature of the electronics industry, obtaining information on environmental factors facilitates alignment between business strategy and its environment.

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New Technology-Based Firms in the New Millennium
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-118-3

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2000

Chittipa Ngamkroeckjoti and Lalit M. Johri

A study of ABB, Shell and CP Group of companies in Thailand found that the scope and management of environmental scanning activities within organizations evolve…

Abstract

A study of ABB, Shell and CP Group of companies in Thailand found that the scope and management of environmental scanning activities within organizations evolve continuously as a result of volatility of the environment and the diverse nature of businesses. In the case of ABB and Shell the respective regional head office along with global head quarter participate actively in the process of environmental scanning in order to make strategic choices and grant approvals for operating budgets and new investments. The regional head quarter, in the case of ABB and Shell, plays the intervening role as information and capital resource provider whereas the country offices collect specific information at the industry and market levels and use it for implementing specific programs. In the case the of CP Group, the president and several vice presidents at the head office in Thailand play the bulk of the role in environmental scanning. All companies use business performance indicators to review the scope and the management of their environmental scanning practices.

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Business Process Management Journal, vol. 6 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-7154

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Book part
Publication date: 9 January 2012

Xue Zhang, Shaheen Majid and Schubert Foo

The external environment is becoming more uncertain and volatile. To be successful and retain competitiveness, organisations have to regularly detect external signals…

Abstract

The external environment is becoming more uncertain and volatile. To be successful and retain competitiveness, organisations have to regularly detect external signals, systematically process and use such information. Environmental scanning is an effective way for organisations to adapt to their external environment by overcoming threats and grasping opportunities. However, some organisations may not be able to conduct environmental scanning due to lack of resources or adequately trained personnel. To satisfy their needs of environmental knowledge, they may have to outsource for such kind of information services, provide training for their existing staff, or hire specialised business information professional. As there is a degree of overlap between information management and environment scanning activities, some of the competencies covered by current LIS programs in Asia would be useful for undertaking environmental scanning activities. Nevertheless, information professionals still need an additional set of competencies to effectively provide this service. For example, LIS professionals would need a basic understanding of business and marketing principles to effectively understand and meet the information needs of their clients; improve their knowledge of various kinds of specialised business information sources and planning. This chapter first introduces the concept of external environment, the definition and process of environment scanning, and how environmental intelligence could be used for strategic planning and organisational learning. Then it discusses the role of environmental scanning as an emerging discipline for LIS education, covering topics as environmental scanning based information services and competencies required for conducting environmental scanning. Finally, it provides an overview of efforts have been made by LIS education programs in Asia in imparting new skills to their graduates for undertaking environmental scanning activities.

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Library and Information Science Trends and Research: Asia-Oceania
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-470-2

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Article
Publication date: 18 May 2015

Jehad S. Aldehayyat

This study aims to analyse the environmental scanning and information sources used by Jordanian firms. Furthermore, the relationship between environmental scanning and…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to analyse the environmental scanning and information sources used by Jordanian firms. Furthermore, the relationship between environmental scanning and organisational characteristics (firm size and industry type), as well as organisational performance, is explored.

Design/methodology/approach

The empirical research was coordinated via a survey of 190 Jordanian publicly quoted firms. The results of the survey provided a rich source of data in relation to a variety of practices associated with environmental scanning in these firms.

Findings

The findings of this study show that scanning focus was higher for the general environmental sectors than the task environmental sectors. The results also demonstrate that these firms rely more on internal sources of information. Larger firms have more scanning activities, while smaller firms tend to focus on different sources of information. Additionally, some differences in the industry sector in terms of scanning behaviour were identified. This study also supports the literature regarding the positive relationship between environment scanning and organisational performance by providing new empirical evidence from the context of Middle East countries.

Originality/value

This paper provides empirical evidence on the nature and the practice of environmental scanning and its value for organisational performance in business firms in a Middle East context. From a theoretical perspective, this study engages in the “convergence versus divergence” debate regarding managers’ scanning behaviour around the world.

Details

Management Research Review, vol. 38 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8269

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2005

Chittipa Ngamkroeckjoti, Mark Speece and Nicholas J. Dimmitt

Some small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Thai food industry put a lot of effort into keeping up with changes of consumption patterns locally and in the South…

Abstract

Purpose

Some small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Thai food industry put a lot of effort into keeping up with changes of consumption patterns locally and in the South East Asia region. To see how successfully they are able to create competitive advantage, aims to examine the impact of environmental scanning practices on new product development (NPD) outcomes among SMEs in the Thai food industry. The technology strategy of the company influences how much it uses environmental scanning, and technology turbulence can play a role in exactly how critical is good knowledge of the external environment.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative research was conducted using semi‐structured in‐depth interviews with food experts and SME owners.

Findings

Results suggest that SMEs that practice environmental scanning are better able to develop appropriate new food products. Technology strategy plays a role in how much scanning they use, with a more proactive technology strategy requiring more extensive scanning. Environmental turbulence, including changes in technology, can cause failure in NPD if scanning does not keep companies aware of the situation.

Originality/value

A simple conceptual model is proposed to show how technology strategy, technological turbulence, and environmental scanning affect NPD performance.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 107 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2000

Jorge Costa and Richard Teare

Investigates the environmental scanning activities of hotel chains operating in Portugal. Attitudes towards environmental scanning by companies where strategy was…

Abstract

Investigates the environmental scanning activities of hotel chains operating in Portugal. Attitudes towards environmental scanning by companies where strategy was formalised through a formal written strategic plan (Intenders) and those companies where strategy was informally developed through a “vision” or “informal plan” (Realizers) were compared. Face to face interviews were conducted with board level executives to identify and assess the relevance of a formal environmental scanning process, the characteristics of such a process, barriers to its development and ways to overcome them. A cognitive mapping technique was used in the analysis of respondents’ perceptions towards the development of such a process, with the maps showing more similarities than differences between the comparison groups, thus highlighting the importance of this process for both intenders and realizes.

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International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 18 May 2010

Céline Bérard and Hélène Delerue

This paper aims to examine the effect of national culture on the capacity of small and medium‐sized biotechnology enterprises to protect their intellectual assets by…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the effect of national culture on the capacity of small and medium‐sized biotechnology enterprises to protect their intellectual assets by analysing the mediator role of environmental scanning behaviour. The extent to which environmental scanning behaviour helps firms to protect their intellectual assets is investigated, and the effects of national cultural values on environmental scanning behaviour are analysed.

Design/methodology/approach

The hypotheses are tested with survey data from 123 biotechnology SMEs located in 14 countries.

Findings

Environmental scanning appears to be an important step in the intellectual property strategy, as it enhances the firm's capacity to protect its intellectual assets. Nevertheless, the results show that firms located in cultures with high uncertainty avoidance, high power distance and low individualism do more scanning, whereas the capacity to protect intellectual assets is perceived as being more important in firms located in cultures with low uncertainty avoidance, low power distance and high individualism.

Research limitations/implications

Certain limitations should be noted. For instance, the research is based on cross‐sectional data, which provide limited insight into the temporal aspects of dynamic environments.

Practical implications

The study has important implications for practitioners. It demonstrates that, in international working relationships, cultural values have a direct effect on environmental scanning behaviour, and hence an indirect effect on intellectual property (IP) protection capability. Given the strategic importance of scanning and IP for innovative firms, the results could help managers to make strategic decisions, specifically in R&D internationalization through decentralization or partnership.

Originality/value

Although few studies have empirically analysed the role of environmental scanning in a particular domain, such as intellectual property strategic management, or adopted a comparative cross‐cultural design to do so, this paper investigates the role of environmental scanning in intellectual property strategy from a cross‐cultural perspective.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 17 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2003

Abdalla Hagen, Semere Haile and Ahmad Maghrabi

This study investigated the impact of the type of strategy on the type of environmental scanning activity of Egyptian CEOs at Egyptian banks. Results indicated that CEOs…

Abstract

This study investigated the impact of the type of strategy on the type of environmental scanning activity of Egyptian CEOs at Egyptian banks. Results indicated that CEOs with a cost‐leadership strategy were involved in environmental scanning activities that provide information concerning threats. Their counterparts with a differentiation strategy were involved in environmental scanning activities that provide information concerning opportunities.

Details

International Journal of Commerce and Management, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1056-9219

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2002

Farhad Analoui and Azhdar Karami

Environmental scanning is a key factor to sustained competitive advantage of the firm and it is becoming increasingly important in small and medium enterprises (SMEs…

Abstract

Environmental scanning is a key factor to sustained competitive advantage of the firm and it is becoming increasingly important in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) theory and practice. Not surprisingly, it is widely viewed as the first step in the process of strategic management. The main debate in strategy and environment management is nowadays concerned with the primary importance of environmental scanning to strategy formulation and implementation. Moreover, effective scanning of the environment is seen as necessary to the successful alignment of competitive strategies with environmental requirements and the achievement of outstanding performance in SMEs. This paper explores the above relationship in the context of the British electrical and electronic industry. It is based on the empirical evidence and the findings of a survey of 132 chief executive officers (CEO) and their perception of environmental scanning and strategy in SMEs. It is concluded that there is a significant relationship between increasing the environmental scanning of the firm, and the success of the firm’s performance in small and medium sized enterprises.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 21 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

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Article
Publication date: 7 February 2019

Ali Abu-Rahma and Bushra Jaleel

This paper aims to investigate the nature and prevalence of environmental scanning as practiced by organizations in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and explore the impact…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate the nature and prevalence of environmental scanning as practiced by organizations in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and explore the impact of perceived uncertainty on the way various information sources are used in managerial decision-making. Specifically, by targeting firms in the region, the paper examines whether the degree and frequency of scanning activities influence the relationship between perceived uncertainty and the use of environmental information in making strategic decisions.

Design/methodology/approach

The study uses a cross-sectional research design, with self-administered questionnaires as the main mode of data collection, and uses quantitative data analysis tools to answer the research questions.

Findings

The study finds that perceived environmental uncertainty significantly influences scanning efforts in an organization, which in turn influence the use of environmental information in decision-making. Additionally, findings suggest that while perceived source quality significantly influences frequency of scanning, the influence of perceived source accessibility on scanning is statistically insignificant.

Research limitations/implications

The results of this study have several implications for academics in the field of strategic management and industry professionals involved in long range planning. Results indicate that scanning activities should be more extensive and frequent when perceived uncertainty is high and indicates the potential value of timely market research to assess demand, gather consumer feedback and respond to changing needs of the customers.

Originality/value

The study addresses an identified gap in the literature and adds to the existing body of work by exploring organizational practices in a unique cultural context and assessing a conceptual model that links perceived uncertainty and environmental scanning to strategic management practices.

Details

International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 27 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1934-8835

Keywords

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