Search results

1 – 10 of 216
To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 27 February 2018

Catarina Grillo, Fernando A.F. Ferreira, Carla S.E. Marques and João J. Ferreira

The 2008 global financial crisis showed that the ability to innovate is a key management skill and that approaches to assessing the innovation capability of small- and…

Abstract

Purpose

The 2008 global financial crisis showed that the ability to innovate is a key management skill and that approaches to assessing the innovation capability of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) need to be as realistic as possible. This study aims to address the latter practical need through a sociotechnical approach.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a combined use of cognitive mapping and the Decision EXpert (DEX) technique, and grounded on the insights generated by a panel of SME managers and entrepreneurs in two intensive group meetings, a knowledge-based assessment system for evaluating SMEs’ innovation capability was created, tested and validated.

Findings

The knowledge-based assessment system identified the most innovative SMEs in a sample of companies. The “plus-minus-1” and dominance analyses carried out provided further support for the results.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed system is extremely versatile but process-oriented and idiosyncratic in nature, meaning that extrapolations to other contexts need to be done with due caution.

Practical implications

The panel of SME decision makers agreed that the system improves the current methods used to evaluate SMEs’ innovation capability, contributing to a more informed perspective on management issues. The panel members also noted that the proposed system functions as a learning mechanism, facilitating the development of well-focused suggestions for improvements SMEs can make.

Originality/value

The integrated use of cognitive maps and rule-base decisions contributes to a better understanding of how to assess SMEs’ innovation capability. No prior work reporting the integrated use of these two techniques in this study context has been found.

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 11 June 2018

Joana M. Gonçalves, Fernando A.F. Ferreira, João J.M. Ferreira and Luís M.C. Farinha

Small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have become increasingly important in national and international markets because they contribute to the development of local and…

Abstract

Purpose

Small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have become increasingly important in national and international markets because they contribute to the development of local and national economies. SMEs often face serious challenges when competing with multinational companies. The purpose of this paper is to develop a method for assessing SMEs’ competitiveness.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a constructivist epistemology, this study makes an integrated use of cognitive mapping and the measuring attractiveness by a categorical-based evaluation technique (MACBETH). To this end, face-to-face sessions were conducted with a panel of entrepreneurs and senior managers who deal with the challenges of maintaining SME competitiveness every day. The proposed assessment system was tested and validated by the panel members.

Findings

The methodological processes adopted in this study provide promising results for decision makers seeking to identify the most competitive SMEs. Specifically, the results emphasize, among other points, the importance of innovation and the human dimension to gaining competitive advantages.

Research limitations/implications

The evaluation system developed in this study is extremely versatile and confirms the usefulness of integrating cognitive mapping and MACBETH to facilitate evaluations of SME competitiveness. However, due to its idiosyncratic and process-oriented nature, generalizations need to be done with caution.

Practical implications

The proposed method can be valuable to researchers seeking to develop mechanisms for evaluating SMEs’ entrepreneurial performance and include specialized know-how and sensemaking in organizational decision-making processes.

Originality/value

The integrated use of cognitive maps and MACBETH contributes to a better understanding of how to assess SMEs’ competitiveness. No prior work reporting the use of this dual methodology in this study context has been found.

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 21 February 2018

Bernardo M.S. Castela, Fernando A.F. Ferreira, João J.M. Ferreira and Carla S.E. Marques

The aftermath of the recent financial crisis has shown that the ability to innovate is a vital management skill and that the methodologies used to evaluate innovation…

Abstract

Purpose

The aftermath of the recent financial crisis has shown that the ability to innovate is a vital management skill and that the methodologies used to evaluate innovation capability within small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) should be as holistic and integrative as possible. The purpose of this paper is to address this issue through the combined use of cognitive mapping and the analytic hierarchy process (AHP).

Design/methodology/approach

Cognitive mapping and multiple criteria decision analysis have proved over the years to be effective in handling a wide range of complex decision problems. Following a socio-technical approach, a non-parametric method of evaluating SME innovation capability – based on the results of group meetings with a panel of information technology entrepreneurs and SME chief executive officers – was created, tested and validated.

Findings

The methodological processes adopted in this study provide promising results for decision makers seeking to identify the most innovative SMEs. Furthermore, the sensitivity analyses carried out also supported the findings.

Research limitations/implications

This study confirms the usefulness of integrating cognitive mapping and the AHP to facilitate evaluations of SME innovation capability. However, due to the process-oriented nature of the research, extrapolations without proper adjustments are not recommended.

Practical implications

The panel members who participated in this study consider the proposal extremely versatile and see great potential for further applications in the measurement of SME innovation capability.

Originality/value

The combined use of cognitive mapping and the AHP offers a holistic and well-informed perspective on the issue in question. The authors know of no prior work reporting this approach in the same research context.

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 7 April 2020

Sara M. Martins, Fernando A.F. Ferreira, João J. M. Ferreira and Carla S.E. Marques

The prosthodontics sector is facing major challenges because of scientific and technological advances that imply a clearer definition of lines of action and decision…

Abstract

Purpose

The prosthodontics sector is facing major challenges because of scientific and technological advances that imply a clearer definition of lines of action and decision making processes. Measuring quality of service in this sector is a complex decision problem since the perceptions of three main players need to be considered: patients, dentists and dental technicians. This study sought to develop an artificial-intelligence-based (AI-based) method for assessing service quality in the dental prosthesis sector.

Design/methodology/approach

Using strategic options development and analysis (SODA), which is grounded on cognitive mapping, and the measuring attractiveness by a categorical based evaluation technique (MACBETH), a constructivist decision support system was designed to facilitate the assessment of service quality in the dental prosthesis sector. The system was tested, and the results were validated both by the members of an expert panel and by the vice-president of the Portuguese association of dental prosthesis technicians.

Findings

The methodological process developed in this study is extremely versatile and its practical application facilitated the development of an empirically robust evaluation model in this study context. Specifically, the profile analyses carried out in actual clinics allowed the cases in which improvements are needed to be identified.

Originality/value

Although already applied in the fields of AI and decision making, no prior work reporting the use of SODA and MACBETH for assessing service quality in the prosthodontics sector has been found.

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 31 March 2021

Ana Luísa A. Vaz, Fernando A.F. Ferreira, Leandro F. Pereira, Ricardo J.C. Correia and Audrius Banaitis

The concept of smart city has recently become more topical in academic and policy discussions. This idea is considered a complex, non-consensual subject since its…

Abstract

Purpose

The concept of smart city has recently become more topical in academic and policy discussions. This idea is considered a complex, non-consensual subject since its definition has not yet been agreed upon by most authors in the relevant fields. The need to identify and measure smart city indicators has also given rise to many different evaluation procedures. However, the available frameworks have yet to overcome challenges in structuring and measuring all the evaluation parameters of the cities in question. Thus, methods still need to be developed and applied that can structure criteria used to assess smart city success.

Design/methodology/approach

This study sought to show cognitive mapping's tangible usefulness as an expedient tool for strategic analysis, using smart cities as a complex object of study. To this end, various cognitive maps were constructed and compared using the Strategic Options Development and Analysis (SODA) approach.

Findings

Cognitive mapping's advantages and limitations in the strategic visualization research context are analyzed and discussed.

Originality/value

The authors know of no prior work reporting comparative analysis of this methodological approach in the same research context.

Details

Management Decision, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

Keywords

Abstract

Details

Management Decision, vol. 57 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 28 May 2021

Marina Weck, Iris Humala, Pia Tamminen and Fernando A.F. Ferreira

This study was developed in response to the need to develop age-friendly smart living environments due to the complex demands placed on society by the ageing of the…

Abstract

Purpose

This study was developed in response to the need to develop age-friendly smart living environments due to the complex demands placed on society by the ageing of the population. This study aims to analyse the potential that knowledge visualisation offers collaborative decision-making applied to the development of a multiple criteria framework supporting knowledge management (KM) through knowledge collaboration (KC) and knowledge sharing (KS) in the context of regional innovation systems (RIS).

Design/methodology/approach

Using a socio-technical approach, knowledgeable and experienced representatives of RIS innovation actors were brought together to develop a constructivist multiple criteria framework that integrates knowledge visualisation and collaborative decision-making techniques (i.e. cognitive mapping and system dynamics).

Findings

The study introduces a multiple criteria model supporting KM encompassing conditions and practices of RIS innovation actors facilitating and encouraging KC and KS. The potential for knowledge visualisation in collaborative decision-making is explored in great depth and illustrated in a case study setting.

Practical implications

The panel members who participated in this study consider our methodological proposal to be extremely versatile and see great potential for further applications in RIS contexts.

Originality/value

The combined use of cognitive mapping and system dynamics according to the strategic options development and analysis (SODA) approach offers a holistic and well-informed perspective on the issue in question. The literature reports no prior work of this methodological combination in the same research context.

Details

Management Decision, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 25 March 2020

Jéssica C.M. Simões, Fernando A.F. Ferreira, Marta Peris-Ortiz and João J.M. Ferreira

Capital restrictions normally exist in the creation of a startup, requiring investors to analyze funding alternatives in a highly competitive climate. Although different…

Abstract

Purpose

Capital restrictions normally exist in the creation of a startup, requiring investors to analyze funding alternatives in a highly competitive climate. Although different types of incentives to support startups exist, these incentives are only available to those companies that fulfill the requirements of the funding program to which they have applied. Due to social and economic changes introduced by the digital economy, however, existing mechanisms for assessing the potential growth of startups are scarce, outdated or simply incomplete, distorting the results of such evaluations.

Design/methodology/approach

Evaluating business opportunities and how to exploit them are critical activities for an entrepreneur. This study sought to address this issue through the combined use of cognitive mapping and the Decision EXpert (DEX) technique. Assuming a constructivist stance, the study brought together a panel of experienced entrepreneurs and business investors to identify and articulate the criteria to be considered in the evaluation and classification of startups.

Findings

The evaluation system created in this study was tested, and the results were validated by the expert panel on a collective basis, demonstrating that the dual methodology used can increase our understanding of the decision problem at hand and lead to more informed and potentially better evaluations of the potential growth of startups.

Originality/value

The authors know of no prior work reporting the integrated use of cognitive mapping and DEX in this study context.

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 14 May 2019

Carla Mascarenhas, Carla S.E. Marques, Anderson R. Galvão, Daniela Carlucci, Pedro F. Falcão and Fernando A.F. Ferreira

The purpose of this paper is to examine how important technology transfer offices (TTOs) – which in Portuguese are called “industrial property support offices” or GAPIs …

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine how important technology transfer offices (TTOs) – which in Portuguese are called “industrial property support offices” or GAPIs – are in terms of fostering patent applications and technology transfer in countries characterized by low performance records in these activities.

Design/methodology/approach

Among the existing 23 Portuguese GAPIs, only eight agreed to provide answers to a semi-structured questionnaire survey. Content analysis was performed on the data collected using NVivo software.

Findings

The results show that GAPIs play an important role in the innovation life-cycle, speeding up the transfer of knowledge and technology to society. The regulation of intellectual property (IP) ownership and royalty sharing with inventors was identified as a major result, strengthening entrepreneurial universities’ role. In addition, after the GAPIs were created, networks were formed that facilitate the sharing of knowledge and experience and promote the development of further collaborative partnerships.

Practical implications

This study’s results offer new insights into how GAPIs contribute to socio-economic growth by fostering more entrepreneurial universities and increasing the transfer of technology to society. In addition, these offices promote the creation of networks between GAPIs, enabling them to leverage universities’ potential for participation in socio-economic development.

Originality/value

No previous research has focused on GAPIs/TTOs’ point of view regarding policies that enhance IP and technology/knowledge transfer.

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 11 March 2014

Fernando A.F. Ferreira, Sérgio P. Santos, Carla S.E. Marques and João Ferreira

Considered the largest investment for most households, buying a house requires careful and transparent analysis by all parties involved in the transaction. The aim of this…

Abstract

Purpose

Considered the largest investment for most households, buying a house requires careful and transparent analysis by all parties involved in the transaction. The aim of this paper is to propose a methodological framework allowing for the readjustment of trade-offs among risk evaluation criteria, considered of extreme importance in the lending decision process of mortgage loans.

Design/methodology/approach

Multiple criteria decision analysis (MCDA) has proved over the years to be effective and versatile in handling compensations among criteria. Measuring attractiveness is applied by a categorical based evaluation technique (MACBETH) to a pre-established structure of credit-scoring criteria for mortgage lending risk evaluation. This pre-established structure is currently used by one of the largest banks in Portugal.

Findings

The framework allowed the authors to provide the credit experts who participated in the study with a more informed, transparent and accurate mortgage-lending risk-evaluation system. The sensitivity and robustness analyses carried out also helped in promoting discussion and supporting the readjustments made.

Research limitations/implications

The study shows the usefulness of using the MACBETH approach to assist credit analysts in making better informed decisions, and opens avenues for further research. However, due to the dependence on the participants involved, extrapolations without proper caution are discouraged.

Practical implications

The credit analysts who participated in this study considered the framework more discerning in terms of Basel directives.

Originality/value

The integration of MACBETH and credit-scoring mechanisms holds great potential for risk assessment and decision support. No prior work reporting the application of MACBETH in terms of mortgage-lending risk-evaluation is known.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 52 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

Keywords

1 – 10 of 216