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Article

Valerie Ratcliffe‐Martin, Elayne Coakes and Gill Sugden

This paper describes some basic concepts of knowledge management, and explains, using these definitions, why universities are not always seats of learning or knowledge…

Abstract

This paper describes some basic concepts of knowledge management, and explains, using these definitions, why universities are not always seats of learning or knowledge sharing. A knowledge management programme, initiated by a leading British university, is described. The authors conclude by suggesting that knowledge management tools may be beneficial to supporting academics in their multi‐faceted work. However, time will tell as to the extent to which they can actually share tacit knowledge and enable real organisational learning across cultures in universities.

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VINE, vol. 30 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0305-5728

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Article

Navjot Sandhu

This paper aims to evaluate whether small marginal farmers in India have financial constraints and to examine how bank managers make lending decisions.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to evaluate whether small marginal farmers in India have financial constraints and to examine how bank managers make lending decisions.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey approach was employed, using semi-structured questionnaires with a sample of 42 banks and 185 farmers from the state of Punjab in India. The questionnaires and semi-structured interviews were carried out on a one-to-one basis and in focus groups, and their responses were analysed from the supply (banks) and demand (farmers) side regarding access to finance.

Findings

The results indicate that the Indian farming sector is a complex and multidimensional one that has dependency on both the private and public sectors because of its national importance to varying degrees. Financial lending decisions are dependent upon several non-quantifiable factors (culture, caste, family size, education) and relational bank lending practices. Such practices have an adverse impact on bankable loan applications, and this gives rise to moral hazards. Relational banking and recommendations minimise default rates, but this does not minimise information asymmetry. Subjectivity in decision-making persists, which is compounded by underdeveloped financial markets for small farmers, giving rise to financial exclusion and negatively impacting on economic growth. To overcome information asymmetry, banks rely on the qualitative factors and an excessive level of collateral when making lending decisions. The findings provide valuable insight into how banks make lending decisions and evaluates a complex matrix of relationships between farmers and providers of debt finance in a developing economy such as India.

Practical implications

Policy makers nationally and internationally could use the results of this research to develop relevant and targeted policies to promote the agricultural sector through adopting efficient provision of finance for farmers. A major contribution of this research is to provide a fundamental evaluation of the issues facing farmers in accessing finance in developing countries.

Originality/value

This study provides an original empirical insight into a sector of the economy that has implications for food security for a country. The study has relevance for a wide range of stakeholders and policy makers of both developed and emerging economies in the world.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 28 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

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Article

ROYAL Alderman T. A. Abbott of Manchester, dealt with somewhat severely by Dr. Savage in his A Librarian's Memories, had at least enthusiasm for libraries. He was mightily…

Abstract

ROYAL Alderman T. A. Abbott of Manchester, dealt with somewhat severely by Dr. Savage in his A Librarian's Memories, had at least enthusiasm for libraries. He was mightily honoured when he became President at our Manchester Conference in 1921. “We are the Royal Library Association”, he declared and should call ourselves that; haven't we a Royal Charter? Our recognition comes direct from the Sovereign”. No doubt a vain wish, although the Library Association seemed to come near it in 1950 when George VI graciously became its Patron and the Duke of Edinburgh its President. Since that date the engineers have become “royal”, but we have slipped back. When Her Majesty came to the Throne, the patronage her father had bestowed was refused, no doubt on the direct counsel of her advisers who would not want so young a Sovereign to assume too many offices. On that view librarians could not murmur. There is a future, however, and in it there will be a new Library Association House next to, almost conjoined with, a new National Central Library. King George V with Queen Mary opened the second, as is well remembered especially by the King's speech, one of the best, most useful, in library history, in which he described the N.C.L. as “a university that all might join and none need ever leave”—words that we hope may somewhere be displayed in, or on, the new N.C.L. building. Royalty and its interest in libraries has been again manifested in the opening last month (July 13th to be precise) by Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, of the new Central Public Library at Kensington. The Royal Family has close relations with Kensington of course. It is recalled, too, that the Manchester Central and that at Birkenhead were opened also by King George V and Queen Mary; and Queen Elizabeth II quite recently opened the Central Library of the re‐created city of Plymouth, the largest new town library since the Second World War. Kensington has now opened the first major London library since 1939. It is not modern in spirit externally and, as is known, is the work of the architect of the Manchester Reference Library, Mr. Vincent Harris, and there is no doubt about its dignity. Its interior methods are, however, quite modern; a few of them were broadcast to us for a few moments by the B.B.C. announcer, to the effect that there were 100,000 books, that returned books in the lending library were not discharged at the counter but slid down a chute to a room below where that was done, etc., with the remark that books not available in the public apartment could be requisitioned from other libraries but, with the large stocks on show and in the building, that did not seem to be very necessary. We sometimes wish that broadcasters, however well intentioned that may have been, knew something about libraries. Happening at about the same time was the removal of the Holborn Central Library stock to its new home in Theobald's Road, a complex process which Mr. Swift and his staff carried out in July without interrupting the public service. We hope that Mr. Swift will be able soon to tell us how he carried out this scheme. Thus has begun what we hope will be a process of replacing many other London libraries with modern buildings more worthy of the excellent work now being done in them.

Details

New Library World, vol. 62 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article

Kenneth David Strang

The literature was reviewed to locate the most relevant social-psychology theories, factors, and instruments in order to measure New York State resident attitudes and…

Abstract

Purpose

The literature was reviewed to locate the most relevant social-psychology theories, factors, and instruments in order to measure New York State resident attitudes and social norms (SNs) concerning their intent to evacuate Hurricane Irene in the summer of 2011. The purpose of this paper is to develop a model which could be generalized to improve social policy determination for natural disaster preparation.

Design/methodology/approach

A post-positivist ideology was employed, quantitative data were collected from an online survey (nominal, binary, interval, and ratio), and inferential statistical techniques were applied to test theory-deductive hypotheses (Strang, 2013b). Since the questions for each hypothesized factor were customized using a pilot for this study, exploratory factor analysis were conducted to ensure the item validity and reliabilities were compared to a priori benchmarks (Gill et al., 2010). Correlation analysis along with logistic and multiple regression were applied to test the hypothesis at the 95 percent confidence level.

Findings

A statistically significant model was developed using correlation, stepwise regression, ordinary least squares regression, and logistic regression. Only two composite factors were needed to capture 55.4 percent of the variance for behavioral intent (BI) to evacuate. The model predicted 43.9 percent of the evacuation decisions, with 13.3 percent undecided, leaving 42.8 incorrectly classified), using logistic regression (n=401 surveyed participants).

Research limitations/implications

Municipal planners can use this information by creating surveys and collecting BI indicators from citizens, during risk planning, in advance of a natural disaster. The concepts could also apply to man-made disasters. Planners can use the results from these surveys to predict the overall likelihood that residents with home equity (e.g. home owners) intend to leave when given a public evacuation order.

Practical implications

Once municipal planners know the indicators for personal attitudes (PAs) (in particular) and SNs, they could sort these by region, to identify areas where the PAs were too low. Then additional evacuation preparation efforts can be focussed on those regions. According to these findings, the emphasis must be focussed on a PA basis, describing the extreme negative impacts of previous disasters, rather than using credible spokespersons, to persuade individuals to leave.

Originality/value

A new model was created with a “near miss disaster” severity factor as an extension to the theory of reasoned action.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 34 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

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Book part

Andrej Svorenčík

Economics laboratories have become the primary locations of experimental economics research by the 1990s. They were a result of a decade long development from ad hoc…

Abstract

Economics laboratories have become the primary locations of experimental economics research by the 1990s. They were a result of a decade long development from ad hoc opportune places to dedicated, purpose designed spaces. The distinctive feature of the economics laboratory and its key instrument became networked computers running custom-built software. However, the history of the economics laboratory is not just a history of evolving technology. I argue in this article that it is mainly a history of learning how to build an experimental economics community. Only a functioning community was able to change a physical place to a laboratory space. The distinction between place and space originates in the work of Michael de Certeau and I use it to analyze the evolution of economics laboratories. To this end, I analyze the case of Austin Hoggatt’s Management Science Laboratory at Berkeley in the 1960s as it illustrates the indispensability of creating a community centered on the laboratory. In contrast, the laboratories in Arizona and at Caltech since the 1980s, and in Amsterdam since the 1990s have become successful spaces, because, unlike Hoggatt, they focused equally on community building as on infrastructure and technology. This gave rise to social infrastructure and division of labor in the laboratory space.

Details

Including a Symposium on Mary Morgan: Curiosity, Imagination, and Surprise
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-423-7

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Book part

Callie H. Burt

Heritability studies attempt to estimate the contribution of genes (vs. environments) to variation in phenotypes (or outcomes of interest) in a given population at a given…

Abstract

Purpose

Heritability studies attempt to estimate the contribution of genes (vs. environments) to variation in phenotypes (or outcomes of interest) in a given population at a given time. This chapter scrutinizes heritability studies of adverse health phenotypes, emphasizing flaws that have become more glaring in light of recent advances in the life sciences and manifest most visibly in epigenetics.

Methodology/approach

Drawing on a diverse body of research and critical scholarship, this chapter examines the veracity of methodological and conceptual assumptions of heritability studies.

Findings

The chapter argues that heritability studies are futile for two reasons: (1) heritability studies suffer from serious methodological flaws with the overall effect of making estimates inaccurate and likely biased toward inflated heritability, and, more importantly (2) the conceptual (biological) model on which heritability studies depend – that of identifiably separate effects of genes versus the environment on phenotype variance – is unsound. As discussed, contemporary bioscientific work indicates that genes and environments are enmeshed in a complex (bidirectional, interactional), dynamic relationship that defies any attempt to demarcate separate contributions to phenotype variance. Thus, heritability studies attempt the biologically impossible. The emerging research on the importance of microbiota is also discussed, including how the commensal relationship between microbial and human cells further stymies heritability studies.

Originality/value

Understandably, few sociologists have the time or interest to be informed about the methodological and theoretical underpinnings of heritability studies or to keep pace with the incredible advances in genetics and epigenetics over the last several years. The present chapter aims to provide interested scholars with information about heritability and heritability estimates of adverse health outcomes in light of recent advances in the biosciences.

Details

Genetics, Health and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-581-4

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Article

Clive Beed and Cara Beed

The Neoclassical approach to analysing personal choice is compared with an approach contained in a Biblical Christian mode of analysis. This paper compares the…

Abstract

The Neoclassical approach to analysing personal choice is compared with an approach contained in a Biblical Christian mode of analysis. This paper compares the Neoclassical and Christian positions via analysis of characteristics of the Neoclassical rational choice model. The main characteristic examined is a basic assumption of the rational choice model that human choice is explained as the optimisation of utility via rational self‐interest. The two positions are compared in terms of how they treat self‐interest and rationality, the degree to which basic assumptions about human behaviour are specified, the importance they attach to the realism of assumptions underlying their models, and the explanatory and predictive purposes for which the models are used. The conclusion of the comparison is that the Biblical Christian perspective encompasses the variables regarded as important in Neoclassical explanation, but presents them in the context of a more embracing worldview perspective than the Neoclassical. This Christian belief perspective is applicable to human behaviour in both “economic” and “non‐economic” domains.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 26 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

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Book part

Robert L. Axtell

Certain elements of Hayek’s work are prominent precursors to the modern field of complex adaptive systems, including his ideas on spontaneous order, his focus on market…

Abstract

Certain elements of Hayek’s work are prominent precursors to the modern field of complex adaptive systems, including his ideas on spontaneous order, his focus on market processes, his contrast between designing and gardening, and his own framing of complex systems. Conceptually, he was well ahead of his time, prescient in his formulation of novel ways to think about economies and societies. Technically, the fact that he did not mathematically formalize most of the notions he developed makes his insights hard to incorporate unambiguously into models. However, because so much of his work is divorced from the simplistic models proffered by early mathematical economics, it stands as fertile ground for complex systems researchers today. I suggest that Austrian economists can create a progressive research program by building models of these Hayekian ideas, and thereby gain traction within the economics profession. Instead of mathematical models the suite of techniques and tools known as agent-based computing seems particularly well-suited to addressing traditional Austrian topics like money, business cycles, coordination, market processes, and so on, while staying faithful to the methodological individualism and bottom-up perspective that underpin the entire school of thought.

Details

Revisiting Hayek’s Political Economy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-988-6

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Article

Balbir S. Sihag

Sages and seers in ancient India specified dharma, artha, kama and moksha as the four ends of a moral and productive life and emphasised the attainment of a proper balance…

Abstract

Sages and seers in ancient India specified dharma, artha, kama and moksha as the four ends of a moral and productive life and emphasised the attainment of a proper balance between the spiritual health and the material health. However, most of their intellectual energy was directed towards the attainment of moksha, the salvation from birth‐death‐rebirth cycle. Kautilya, on the other hand considered poverty as a living death and concentrated on devising economic policies to achieve salvation from poverty but without compromising with ethical values unless survival of the state was threatened. Kautilya's Arthashastra is unique in emphasising the imperative of economic growth and welfare of all. According to him, if there is no dharma, there is no society. He believed that ethical values pave the way to heaven as well as to prosperity on the earth, that is, have an intrinsic value as well as an instrumental value. He referred the reader to the Vedas and Philosophy for learning moral theory, which sheds light on the distinction between good and bad and moral and immoral actions. He extended the conceptual framework to deal with conflict of interest situations arising from the emerging capitalism. He dedicated his work to Om (symbol of spirituality, God) and Brihaspati and Sukra (political thinkers) implying, perhaps, that his goal was to integrate ethics and economics. It is argued that the level of integration between economics and ethics is significantly higher in Kautilya's Arthashastra than that in Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations or for that matter in the writings of Plato and Aristotle.

Details

Humanomics, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0828-8666

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Article

Being in possession of the “right” information is vital in maintaining competitiveness in the modern business age. There is a mass of information “out there” in the…

Abstract

Being in possession of the “right” information is vital in maintaining competitiveness in the modern business age. There is a mass of information “out there” in the environment, so coping with it, managing it effectively, and selecting from it that which is useful, would appear to be the key to success.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 21 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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