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Article
Publication date: 17 June 2022

Osvaldo de Souza, Marcio C. Machado, Victor Silva Correa and Renato Telles

This paper aims to explore the formal (i.e. contracts, standards, processes, and structure) and informal (i.e. social structure, norms, information sharing, and value…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the formal (i.e. contracts, standards, processes, and structure) and informal (i.e. social structure, norms, information sharing, and value system and culture) governance instruments used in supply networks and their influence on quality.

Design/methodology/approach

This research is qualitative-exploratory in nature, involving semi-structured interviews with 20 managers from three essential layers in the dairy industry's supply chain: companies that supply essential inputs to milk producers; milk producers; and milk cooperatives.

Findings

Analysis of the generated data show that formal governance instruments have a strong and/or weak influence on products' and operations' quality in the dairy industry context; informal instruments have a strong and/or weak influence on quality, as a counterpart to formal instruments; and the integration of verified governance instruments positively influences the quality of products and operations.

Practical implications

This paper offers several managerial and practical implications. The first is to encourage suppliers of primary inputs and milk producers to invest in the formal structure, primarily in formal contracts with each other. The second implication suggests the relevance of creating different training and qualification courses with members from all organizational levels. Third, there is a need for cooperatives, encompassing all industries, to consider several informal instruments, complementary to contracts and standards currently used for processes.

Originality/value

Governance instruments can lead to desired supply chain outcomes, including those related to quality. Although previous supply chain studies have investigated the relationship between governance instruments and the supply chain, and quality management and the supply chain, studies on governance instruments' influence on supply chain quality are limited.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 May 2022

Bruna Dones Gayer, Tarcisio Abreu Saurin and Michel Anzanello

Resilience in lean production systems (LPSs) relies on both formal and informal practices. Considering that these latter are relatively less explored, this paper describes…

Abstract

Purpose

Resilience in lean production systems (LPSs) relies on both formal and informal practices. Considering that these latter are relatively less explored, this paper describes the nature and role of informal resilience practices in the performance of LPSs.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey was devised to assess the use of 12 informal practices related to resilience. The survey was answered by 206 respondents from high and low lean adopters in Brazil, focusing on their internal operations. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to assess the impact of those practices on operational performance. Six respondents were approached on follow-up interviews, offering examples of informal resilience in LPSs.

Findings

Both high and low lean adopters used informal resilience practices to a similar extent, and they were not detrimental to high lean adopters. These practices had no moderating effect on the relationship between the level of leanness and the operational performance of high lean adopters.

Research limitations/implications

This study did not capture how the contribution of informal resilience practices changed over time within the same company.

Practical implications

As the informal resilience practices are not necessarily consonant with lean principles, their use and rationale should be made explicit to workers and managers in LPSs. Moreover, lean assessments might be more credible if paying heed to the informal ways of implementing lean practices.

Originality/value

This is the first study that investigates the role of informal resilience practices in LPSs.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 1 June 2022

Eijaz Ahmed Khan, Md Maruf Hossan Chowdhury, Pradip Royhan, Sunaina Gowan, Mohammed Mizanur Rahman and Mehregan Mahdavi

Sustainable development goals and the climate change agenda are becoming widely promoted topics of research for the 21st century. The role of cities is increasingly…

Abstract

Purpose

Sustainable development goals and the climate change agenda are becoming widely promoted topics of research for the 21st century. The role of cities is increasingly recognised as central to investigating these topics. Yet, the field of informal sector entrepreneurship which so many urban entrepreneurs in developing countries depend upon is seldom considered. To redress this imbalance, this study aims to develop a decision model in accordance with institutional theory (IT) and resource dependency theory (RDT) for city managers to deploy. The model identifies and prioritises optimal strategies to address the three areas of sustainability requirements environment society and economy within the study context of Bangladesh.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used a mixed methods research design. In the qualitative part, the authors identified the three areas of sustainability requirements (i.e. environment, society and economy) and their corresponding strategies involving the informal sector that operates within the urban environment. In the quantitative part, the authors applied fuzzy quality function deployment (QFD) integrated with the 0-1 non-linear optimisation technique to identify optimal strategies.

Findings

The findings show that strategies such as legitimate frameworks, waste management, allocation of urban public space and training programs contribute in important ways to the three areas of sustainability requirements.

Practical implications

The proposed decision model will assist policy-makers and city managers to prioritise sustainability requirements and implement optimal strategies to address those requirements.

Originality/value

Through the integration of IT and RDT, the decision model developed in this study is unique in its application to urban-based informal entrepreneurship in the context of developing countries. The effective application of the fuzzy QFD approach and the optimisation model in the context of urban-based informal entrepreneurship also offers unique contributions to the field of study.

Details

International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-8692

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 April 2022

Karin Dangermond, Ricardo Weewer, Joachim Duyndam and Anja Machielse

How firefighters cope with critical incidents is partly influenced by the culture of the fire brigade. The purpose of this study is to better understand how informal peer…

Abstract

Purpose

How firefighters cope with critical incidents is partly influenced by the culture of the fire brigade. The purpose of this study is to better understand how informal peer support helps firefighters cope with critical incidents.

Design/methodology/approach

An ethnographic field study of explorative nature was conducted. Data were collected by means of 20 participating observations and 72 interviews with Dutch firefighters from 37 different fire brigades. The analysis was an iterative process alternating data collection, analysis and theory formation processes.

Findings

Firefighters will turn to informal peer support to cope with critical incidents provided that facilitating circumstances are present and there is adherence to certain implicit rules. The collective sharing of memories, whether immediately post-incident or after the passage of time, helps firefighters process critical incidents and serves to promote unit cohesion. Most firefighters reported these informal debriefings to be preferable to the formal sessions. By comparison, a minority of firefighters reported that they did not benefit at all from the informal interactions.

Research limitations/implications

This study only focused on the informal peer support given by colleagues. Future research should focus on: (1) The possible differences between men and women as to what extent informal peer support is experienced after critical incidents, (2) Commanding officers: how do they, given their hierarchical position, experience coming to terms with critical incidents, (3) Premeditated critical incidents and the role of informal peer support, (4) Similarities and differences between career and non-career firefighters in experiencing and coping critical incidents.

Practical implications

Firefighters are an under-researched group in academic literature, that would benefit from mental health counsellors having a better understanding of their unique work culture and the complexity of the firefighting profession. More knowledge about the role of informal peer support is necessary to tailor help and aftercare more effectively to their needs.

Originality/value

Most studies confirm the importance of informal peer support when coping with critical incidents. This study provides initial, in-depth evidence of the role of informal peer support in helping firefighters cope with critical incidents.

Details

International Journal of Emergency Services, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2047-0894

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 May 2022

Christopher Boafo, Alexis Catanzaro and Utz Dornberger

The International Labor Organization (2020) estimates that eight out of ten enterprises (i.e. own-account workers and small economic units) are informal worldwide…

Abstract

Purpose

The International Labor Organization (2020) estimates that eight out of ten enterprises (i.e. own-account workers and small economic units) are informal worldwide. However, less is known about the internationalization of informal enterprises. Here, it is argued that economic blocs, such as sub-Saharan Africa, with a greater proportion of informal enterprises, may provide broader societal legitimacy for them to operate internationally. Thus, informal firms would need to collaborate with other firms to overcome their resource constraints. Geographic colocation is one way to facilitate positive interfirm interactions that promote networking and subsequently cooperation. The purpose of this paper is, thus, to addresses two questions. Firstly, how and to what extent does interfirm marketing cooperation in geographic colocation influence the internationalization of micro and small informal manufacturing enterprises? Secondly, how do the perceived benefits of local external economies moderate this relationship?

Design/methodology/approach

The study draws evidence from 125 randomly selected informal enterprises located in two major clusters in Ghana, using a mixed-method approach.

Findings

The partial least square - structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM) analysis applied revealed two central points. Firstly, sharing marketing costs allows informal firms to upgrade their phases of export development directly. Secondly, the linkage of increasing sales activities and local external economies encourages the progress of the phases of export development and the scope of internationalization. Results confirm that the cluster benefits of interfirm cooperation and local external economies on the informal firm internationalization process complement each other in addition to their linear relationship.

Originality/value

The study contributes to understanding the nexus of the informal sector, geographic colocation and the entrepreneurial internationalization literature. The results should motivate researchers and policymakers to approach informal firm internationalization through collaborative business activities.

Details

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

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 April 2022

Sisira Dharmasri Jayasekara

This study aims to discuss the consequences of trade-based money laundering (TBML) and informal remittance services on the sustainability of the position of balance of…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to discuss the consequences of trade-based money laundering (TBML) and informal remittance services on the sustainability of the position of balance of payments and net foreign assets of a small open economy.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a case study design using facts related to TBML and informal remittance services on the balance of payment and net foreign assets of Sri Lanka.

Findings

The contextual analysis reveals that the growth of the informal economy promotes informal remittance services in Sri Lanka. The policy decision to peg local currency to US dollars as a result of a shortage of foreign exchange had forced people to use informal channels for different purposes. The unclear and vague customer due diligence process of the anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) regime also has forced people to use informal remittance services. Criminals especially drug traffickers have grabbed the promoted informal remittance services to transfer proceeds from Sri Lanka to overseas drug suppliers. On the other hand, systematic deficiencies in monitoring and regulation of movement of fund transfers and merchandise across borders provide opportunities for criminals to use different TBML techniques to transfer funds. These limitations force policymakers and regulators to think of developing a comprehensive payment ecosystem to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing. Therefore, the global initiative is required to move towards a payment ecosystem from a recommendation-based AML/CFT regime to reduce global crimes.

Research limitations/implications

This study was designed to discuss the implications of TBML and informal remittance services on the balance of payments and net foreign assets in a small open economy. The structure and size of the economy, the strength of the overall economy and the AML/CFT regime will play an important role in controlling criminal activities and combating money laundering of an economy; hence, the impact of TBML and informal remittance services will vary accordingly across the countries

Originality/value

This paper is an original work done by the authors, which discusses the implications of TBML and informal remittance services on the balance of payments and net foreign assets of an emerging market context.

Details

Journal of Money Laundering Control, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1368-5201

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 29 March 2022

Ernest Abaho, Rachel Mindra, Ester Agasha and Aminah Balunywa

The study examined the nature of the operation of informal savings groups. Emphasis was on their composition, the mode of financial transactions and sharing of financial…

Abstract

Purpose

The study examined the nature of the operation of informal savings groups. Emphasis was on their composition, the mode of financial transactions and sharing of financial proceeds, the impact of the savings and members loaning on the members' financial and business growth, and the perception of the members on the benefits of the savings. The study also profiled the significant challenges encountered by the groups.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted an exploratory research design. The point of saturation was achieved after 15 members of informal savings groups were interviewed. Data were analyzed using content analysis techniques with the aid of NVivo version 10 software, and verbatim tests were used to explain the emergent themes.

Findings

The findings indicate that informal savings groups are accessible, sustainable and inclusive financing alternatives for low-income earners. Group sizes range from 250 to 3 members. As a sign of commitment, a form of identification is required to join the group. Findings also indicate that group leaders are elected, and their term of service could be renewable. It was discovered that members join mainly to save in financial terms, and they have benefited both monetary and socially. The biggest challenge these groups face is that members default.

Practical implications

The study provides evidence that informal financial service providers are an effective alternative to business financing that leverage existing social structures that are predominant in Uganda.

Originality/value

The study provides a benchmark for understanding the dynamics, capabilities and challenges impeding the survival and growth of informal savings groups as critical components in Uganda's financial system.

Details

African Journal of Economic and Management Studies, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-0705

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 August 1990

Raef T. Hussein

Informal work‐groups are described, and theircharacteristics and development are discussed.They are compared with formal groups which aredefined by the structure of the…

1831

Abstract

Informal work‐groups are described, and their characteristics and development are discussed. They are compared with formal groups which are defined by the structure of the organisation and an individual′s role within that structure. Informal groups will always occur in any organisation; so management′s task is to understand and use informal groups to achieve the organisation′s ends. This is especially true as regards productivity, and the variables affecting productivity are discussed. The article then concentrates on leadership as a factor affecting group productivity. In this context, interactions between leaders (formal and informal) and group members are considered. A model is presented of how management can use informal groups to increase productivity. The importance of good relationships between formal and informal groups is emphasised, and a list of ways in which management can foster good relationships is provided. If, for any reason, the informal group will not co‐operate with the organisation, but continues to work against it, management must ensure that the group is disbanded.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 28 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 25 September 2009

Colin C. Williams

It is now widely recognised that in most economies there is a large number of hidden entrepreneurs operating wholly or partially “off‐the‐books”. Until now, however, there…

1083

Abstract

Purpose

It is now widely recognised that in most economies there is a large number of hidden entrepreneurs operating wholly or partially “off‐the‐books”. Until now, however, there has been a degree of silence on the gendering of such entrepreneurship, including exploring whether men and women have different motives for participating in hidden/informal entrepreneurship. The purpose of this paper, therefore, is to begin to fill this gap in the knowledge.

Design/methodology/approach

The findings of face‐to‐face structured interviews with 130 informal entrepreneurs in England are reported; 70 are early‐stage entrepreneurs and 60 are established business owner‐managers, living in a range of affluent and deprived urban and rural English localities.

Findings

A key finding of the paper is that three‐quarters of entrepreneurs operate in the informal economy, with women informal entrepreneurs chiefly necessity‐driven and men being largely voluntary participants in informal entrepreneurship. Further unpacking their motives, however, reveals not only that both necessity and choice are co‐present motives for most informal entrepreneurs, but also that their motives change over time, with many women who originally entered informal entrepreneurship out of necessity becoming more opportunity‐driven.

Research limitations/implications

Although this survey is conducted in a diverse range of English localities to avoid the pitfall of generalizing from a specific locality‐type, it does not provide nationally representative data on informal entrepreneurship.

Originality/value

This is one of the first studies attempting to investigate why men and women engage in informal entrepreneurship.

Details

International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship, vol. 1 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-6266

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 14 April 2022

Robert Holmgren and David Sjöberg

The purpose of this study is to explore Swedish police education teachers’ informal workplace learning and its perceived value for their professional development. Two…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to explore Swedish police education teachers’ informal workplace learning and its perceived value for their professional development. Two categories of teachers, police teachers and university teachers, with different professional knowledge and experience, work together at the police education unit.

Design/methodology/approach

The method used was in-depth interviews with teachers working at a Swedish police education unit.

Findings

Informal workplace learning was perceived by both teacher groups to be of great value for gaining knowledge about the local practice and for their professional development. Their learning emerged in discussions, observations and practically oriented activities in their daily work. Four conclusions: firstly, the teachers’ informal workplace learning was socially and practice-oriented and learning emerged in a collaborative, reciprocal and active process. Secondly, the embodied nature of the learning is evident in the teachers’ joint activities in the teaching practice. Thirdly, it takes time and active involvement in the local practice to become a professional teacher in this kind of education. Fourthly, an educational structure where academic knowledge and experience can be integrated with police knowledge and experience constitutes an important basis for teachers’ professional development in police education and training.

Originality/value

The study’s focus on police education and the professional development of teachers in this specific practice contributes to increased knowledge of the social, practice-oriented and embodied nature of informal workplace learning.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

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