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Article
Publication date: 6 June 2019

George M. Cairns

The purpose of this paper is to present a personal reflection on the nature of international business (IB) as a field of both academic study and business practice and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a personal reflection on the nature of international business (IB) as a field of both academic study and business practice and, specifically, a domain of political action and societal impact.

Design/methodology/approach

The author summarizes what he consider to be his personal contributions to the field of IB over the 15 years of Critical Perspectives on International Business’s existence, to underpin a set of critically reflective questions on the nature of IB, and to inform a brief ‘manifesto’ for how the author envisages a meaningful future for IB research.

Findings

The argumentation of this paper is directed at supporting IB research and activity that is underpinned by an Aristotelian phronetic perspective – thinking to inform action for the good of society at large.

Originality/value

This paper presents an original perspective from the author, one that appreciates the multitude of perspectives, values and beliefs of the full range of stakeholders who might impact or be impacted by IB activity.

Details

critical perspectives on international business, vol. 15 no. 2/3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-2043

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2017

George M. Cairns

This paper aims to revisit the author’s 2007 “Postcard from Chittagong” to reprise the past decade of activity related to the ship breaking industry of Bangladesh.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to revisit the author’s 2007 “Postcard from Chittagong” to reprise the past decade of activity related to the ship breaking industry of Bangladesh.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on content analysis of global and local source documentation. This includes academic works, research reports from non-governmental organizations and general and specialist media reports.

Findings

Over the past decade, there have been a number of international initiatives that seek to control the disposal and dismantling of redundant ships. However, based on evidence of ongoing environmental and health impacts in Bangladesh, the effectiveness of these is questioned.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is intended to prompt debate on the ship breaking industry in Bangladesh and on the nature of global supply chains and logistics in the consumption society.

Originality/value

The paper revisits and updates a 2007 study that has been referred to and cited in a range of outlets. It is intended to continue and enhance discussion.

Details

critical perspectives on international business, vol. 13 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-2043

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2000

Bob Grimshaw and George Cairns

This paper is a consolidation of the keynote address given to the BIFM Annual Conference and Research Forum held at the University of Warwick in September 1999 in which…

Abstract

This paper is a consolidation of the keynote address given to the BIFM Annual Conference and Research Forum held at the University of Warwick in September 1999 in which the authors sought to identify the underlying forces influencing FM’s global development. They argue that radical movements in demand side organisational structures are bringing about fundamental change in the relationship between businesses and their supporting infrastructure and that, if FM is to generate an ability to enhance business performance via the effective application of infrastructure resources, then it will have to be able to respond positively to this new landscape. This will involve re‐evaluation of the structure that supports FM development, including the system for producing FM knowledge, and implies new models that integrate research and practice.

Details

Facilities, vol. 18 no. 10/11/12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2003

George Cairns

Promotes the notion that the emergent field of facility/facilities management (FM) requires a philosophical basis, where philosophy refers not to esoteric, academic…

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Abstract

Promotes the notion that the emergent field of facility/facilities management (FM) requires a philosophical basis, where philosophy refers not to esoteric, academic abstraction, but to the basic theory and general principles of knowledge that underpin everyday activity. Argues specifically for generation of a philosophy of “the workplace”; the separate but related social, physical, technological and organizational contexts of work; the centre stage of FM activity, in order to: first, provide a knowledge base that critically engages with the complexities and ambiguities of these diverse but interconnected contexts of work; second, engage with some of the failings of FM knowledge to date, where idealistic best practice is presented as if it were theory, and simplistic research presents universal solutions based upon limited engagement with a single context; and third, provide a knowledge base that can stand up to critical analysis from other fields of knowledge, some of which overlap with that of FM.

Details

Facilities, vol. 21 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 31 March 2020

Ivano Bongiovanni, Karen Renaud and George Cairns

To investigate the links between IC and the protection of data, information and knowledge in universities, as organizations with unique knowledge-related foci and challenges.

Abstract

Purpose

To investigate the links between IC and the protection of data, information and knowledge in universities, as organizations with unique knowledge-related foci and challenges.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors gathered insights from existing IC-related research publications to delineate key foundational aspects of IC, identify and propose links to traditional information security that impact the protection of IC. They conducted interviews with key stakeholders in Australian universities in order to validate these links.

Findings

The authors’ investigation revealed two kinds of embeddedness characterizing the organizational fabric of universities: (1) vertical and (2) horizontal, with an emphasis on the connection between these and IC-related knowledge protection within these institutions.

Research limitations/implications

There is a need to acknowledge the different roles played by actors within the university and the relevance of information security to IC-related preservation.

Practical implications

Framing information security as an IC-related issue can help IT security managers communicate the need for knowledge security with executives in higher education, and secure funding to preserve and secure such IC-related knowledge, once its value is recognized.

Originality/value

This is one of the first studies to explore the connections between data and information security and the three core components of IC's knowledge security in the university context.

Details

Journal of Intellectual Capital, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1469-1930

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2014

George Cairns

This paper aims to critically engage with the premise of development at the “bottom of the pyramid” through consideration of the current and potential future status of the…

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1011

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to critically engage with the premise of development at the “bottom of the pyramid” through consideration of the current and potential future status of the workers who dismantle end-of-life ships in the breaking yards of “less developed countries”, here with specific reference to the dynamic situation in Bangladesh.

Design/methodology/approach

The study applies “critical scenario method” (CSM) to explore different possible and plausible futures for the ship-breaking industry globally and locally.

Findings

The paper argues that the status of the workers in the ship-breaking industry of Bangladesh can be conceptualised as firmly set at the “bottom of the pyramid”, and that, for most if not all, this situation cannot be changed within any industry future without wider, radical change to socioeconomic and political structures both in the country and globally.

Originality/value

This paper offers a contribution to the discourse on consumption at the “bottom of the pyramid” as a development process.

Details

critical perspectives on international business, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-2043

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Article
Publication date: 25 October 2011

George Cairns and Joanne Roberts

The purpose of this extended editorial is to reflect on the journey of critical perspectives on international business over the past seven years and to look forward to…

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925

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this extended editorial is to reflect on the journey of critical perspectives on international business over the past seven years and to look forward to future issues and potential concerns of the journal. In addition, the contents of the current issue are introduced.

Design/methodology/approach

Using the form of a conversation between the journal's co‐editors, the development of the journal and features of its content over the last seven years are discussed, and related to the ever changing external context. The current trends and concerns emerging in the field of international business are used to speculate on the future direction of the journal and its prospective content.

Findings

By tracing key points and features of the development of the journal over the past seven years, this paper identifies a growing need for critique of international business in all its various forms, and, especially from inter, multi and trans‐disciplinary perspectives.

Originality/value

This is the first attempt to evaluate critical perspectives on international business. As such, it offers a foundation from which to speculate on the future development of both the journal and the field of critical studies on international business.

Details

Critical perspectives on international business, vol. 7 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-2043

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 31 July 2009

George Cairns and Joanne Roberts

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419

Abstract

Details

Critical perspectives on international business, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-2043

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Book part
Publication date: 17 February 2017

George Cairns and Sharif As-Saber

Conventional international business (IB) theories generally view multinational corporations (MNCs) as agents of economic exchange and as ethically benign or neutral. This…

Abstract

Conventional international business (IB) theories generally view multinational corporations (MNCs) as agents of economic exchange and as ethically benign or neutral. This article explores a darker side of IB, with numbers of IB firms involved in activities that could be considered unethical or illegal, or both. Drawing on a taxonomy of ‘black international business’ (black IB), and both historic and recent examples, this article outlines such MNC activities. It explores impacts of these activities on stakeholders, including nation-states, businesses and individuals. The authors call for academics within the field of organizational studies to create awareness and understanding of such activities.

Details

Multinational Corporations and Organization Theory: Post Millennium Perspectives
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-386-3

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Article
Publication date: 25 February 2014

George Cairns

– The purpose of this paper is to reflect on the origins of CPoIB and on events in the IB sphere over the decade since it was conceived.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to reflect on the origins of CPoIB and on events in the IB sphere over the decade since it was conceived.

Design/methodology/approach

The approach of the paper is one of personal critical reflection on events and their implications for the full range of involved and affected parties, informed by Aristotelian philosophy.

Findings

The author posits the need for a new generation of “academic activists” in support of a humanistic management manifesto.

Originality/value

The paper reinforces the philosophy of CPoIB and the need for its continuing growth and development.

Details

critical perspectives on international business, vol. 10 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-2043

Keywords

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