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Article
Publication date: 12 March 2016

Yadong Luo and Qinqin Zheng

This article is a commentary on The “Global Implications of the Indigenous Epistemological System from the East: How to Apply Yin-Yang Balancing to Paradox Management”…

Abstract

Purpose

This article is a commentary on The “Global Implications of the Indigenous Epistemological System from the East: How to Apply Yin-Yang Balancing to Paradox Management” (Li, 2016), which is a timely and important piece. Li (2016) offers epistemological insights into what Yin-Yang is, why Yin-Yang can serve as a guiding frame of thinking, and how to apply this frame of thinking to paradoxical issues to organizations that compete in a complex cross cultural world. Western management philosophies and perspectives have dominated the mainstream theories in organization and management around the world over the past five decades, paying very limited attention and appreciation to Eastern philosophies that exist already for over 2500 years (e.g., 551–479 BC’s Confucianism). In this commentary, we added more explanations, suggesting that given intensified complex and competing needs to fulfil for today’s businesses, the indigenous Eastern epistemological wisdom of Yin-Yang balancing is an important guide to understand paradoxes and tensions. Yin-Yang balancing provides a holistic comprehension concerning our complex reality. It treats two opposite elements of any paradox as partial trade-off as well as partial synergy within a spectrum of holistic and dynamic balancing. We reinforce that the duality perspective has good potential to help us better understand the process of a multitude of conflictual and competing needs organizations must simultaneously accomplish. This potential is deemed to work not merely for firms competing in the East or other developing countries but can extend to organizations, large or small, in the West or developed countries as well.

Design/methodology/approach

This commentary echoes Li’s point (2016) that Yin-Yang balancing has significant and extensive applications when a growing number of organizations, local and foreign, are compelled to become ambidextrous when facing complex new business realities and having to deal with intensified competing needs they have to simultaneously, interactively and dynamically satisfy. This commentary discusses some distinctive characteristics of Eastern philosophies, followed by articulation of some critical lacuna, we think, concerning the Yin-Yang duality that should be answered. In this commentary, we amplify Li’s main points, along with our suggested agenda for future research that can further develop Yin-Yang balancing to a theory of managing paradox.

Findings

Eastern philosophies have long been dominated by five pillars or five schools of mastery thoughts originating mainly from China – Confucianism (Ru Jia), Taoism (Tao Jia), Legalism (Fa Jia), Militarism (Bing Jia), and Buddhism (Fu Jia). The Yin-Yang philosophy is one of the central notions of Taoism which teaches us how to act in accordance with nature. Founded by Laozi and Zhuangzhi, Taoism is rooted in an understanding of the “way” (i.e., Tao), which is the shapeless force that brings all things into existence and then nurtures them. That is, Tao means the natural course, which is spontaneous, eternal, nameless, and indescribable. Unlike Confucianism, Taoism favors philosophical anarchism and pluralism. Tao manifests itself through natural principles or philosophies, including Yin-Yang duality, circular nature of changes, wu-wei (natural course of action), and harmony with internal and external environments.

Research limitations/implications

We endorse Li's view (2016) that Western and Eastern management philosophies have their respective strengths and weaknesses, neither one alone is sufficient to manage all types of problems. Thus, a better solution is the one that can integrate Eastern and Western epistemological systems into a geocentric meta-system. The world is entering into a globally-interconnected era, requiring both the organic complexity and ambiguity and the mechanistic simplicity and clarity. Increased global interconnectivity accentuates complexity and interdependence while increased competition fortifies dynamism and uncertainty. This will cause more, not less, paradoxes than before. To this end, Yin-Yang balancing is an audacious and judicious frame of thinking toward paradoxes because this philosophy embodies a unique ability to address the key challenges of ambiguity, complexity, and uncertainty and embraces multiplicity, diversity and inter-penetrability.

Practical implications

After centuries of Western economic dominance, China, India and the rest of the East, alongside emerging economies more broadly, are beginning to challenge the West for positions of global industry leadership. At a deeper level, the transformation from “West Leads East” to “West Meets East” heralds the need for ambidextrous or ambicultural thinking: making simultaneous use of opposites, or simultaneously balancing seemingly contradictory forces and needs, such as efficiency and flexibility, competition and cooperation, stability and adaptation, exploitation and exploration, global and local, privatization and state-ownership, market-based and relationship-based strategies, individualism and collectivism, and long-term and short-term

Originality/value

Enlightened by Yin-Yang balancing, there is a great potential of co-evolution, convergence and co-reinforcement of different philosophies. It will not be easy for any single study to reveal a roadmap for this, but it is feasible for the management research community to finally make the trip with our continuous and collective efforts. Some Western management theories, such as organizational ambidexterity, loose coupling, collaborative competitive advantage, co-opetition, transnational solution (integrated global integration and local responsiveness), to name a few, share some core values of Yin-Yang balancing, even though such sharing has never been articulated explicitly. Similar to the same difficulty facing any other philosophies to be transformed into actionable theories, we have a long journey to navigate in quest for extending Yin-Yang balancing to a universally accepted theory of managing paradoxes. Li’s article (2016) sheds much light for us to forge ahead to this direction.

Details

Cross Cultural & Strategic Management, vol. 23 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-5794

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2005

Jia Beisi

Each person in Hong Kong produces three times more waste than that of Singapore. This is because a large portion of the waste in Hong Kong is from the construction sector…

Abstract

Each person in Hong Kong produces three times more waste than that of Singapore. This is because a large portion of the waste in Hong Kong is from the construction sector. Re-decoration work carried out by dwellers in Hong Kong is one of the major sources of the construction and demolition waste. Development of flexible reusable infill systems with high recycling potential is significant. A number of these systems are currently used, mainly in public and commercial buildings. They may have potential to be applied in residential buildings in the future.

This paper starts with an introduction to the infill systems applied in open building history. It then points out the need to investigate the development of infill processes by integrating infill products available in the market. The paper further introduces current open building studies on reusability of infill systems and addresses the problem that there is a lack of quantitative information on embodied energy and other environmental impacts of infill systems.

In the methodology section the paper describes five types of partition walls selected, ranging from low flexibility to high flexibility. Applying an evaluation model for environmental impact, the paper analyzes embodied energy intensity, and environmental impacts of each partition systems in two simulated situations. One is in a two room unit of a public housing prototype and the other is in private apartment. It concludes that partition walls with higher flexibility are highly intensive in their embodied energy. In other environmental impacts, especially recycling potential, flexible partition wall panels exceed that of conventional block-work partitions. The study will enable more complete information to be obtained concerning the environmental impact of infill components and will assist architects and other building professional wisely apply open building design concepts.

Details

Open House International, vol. 30 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0168-2601

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2020

Ammar Moohialdin, Fiona Lamari, Marc Miska and Bambang Trigunarsyah

Hot and humid climates (HHCs) are potential environmental hazards that directly affect construction workers' health and safety (HS) and negatively impact workers'…

Abstract

Purpose

Hot and humid climates (HHCs) are potential environmental hazards that directly affect construction workers' health and safety (HS) and negatively impact workers' productivity. Extensive research efforts have addressed the effects of HHCs. However, these efforts have been inconsistent in their approach for selecting factors influencing workers in such conditions. There are also increasing concerns about the drop-off in research interest to follow through intrusive and non-real-time measurements. This review aims to identify the major research gaps in measurements applied in previous research with careful attention paid to the factors that influence the intrusiveness and selection of the applied data collection methods.

Design/methodology/approach

This research integrates a manual subjective discussion with a thematic analysis of Leximancer software and an elaborating chronological, geographical and methodological review that yielded 701 articles and 76 peer-reviewed most related articles.

Findings

The literature included the physiological parameters as influencing factors and useful indicators for HHC effects and identified site activity intensity as the most influencing work-related factor. In total, three main gaps were identified: (1) the role of substantial individual and work-related factors; (2) managerial interventions and the application of the right time against the right symptoms, sample size and measurement intervals and (3) applied methods of data collection; particularly, the intrusiveness of the utilised sensors.

Practical implications

The focus of researchers and practitioners should be in applying nonintrusive, innovative and real-time methods that can provide crew-level measurements. In particular, methods that can represent the actual effects of allocated tasks are aligned with real-time weather measurements, so proactive HHC-related preventions can be enforced on time.

Originality/value

This review contributes to the field of construction workers' safety in HHCs and enables researchers and practitioners to identify the most influential individual and work-related factors in HHCs. This review also proposes a framework for future research with suggestions to cover the highlighted research gaps and contributes to a critical research area in the construction industry.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 3 July 2017

Fu Jia, Guido Orzes, Marco Sartor and Guido Nassimbeni

The purpose of this paper is to develop a synthesised conceptual framework for global sourcing (GS) strategy and structure.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a synthesised conceptual framework for global sourcing (GS) strategy and structure.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors adopt a systematic literature review method and analyse through content analysis techniques 52 peer-reviewed journal articles focussed on GS strategy and structure. Based on these analyses, a conceptual model is developed.

Findings

A synthesised construct of GS strategy, consisting of three dimensions, i.e., supply internationalisation, internal integration and external integration, is proposed. The GS structure construct is further broken down into structural design and control and coordination, consisting of three dimensions for each. Propositions for GS strategy, GS structure and, in particular, the relationships between them are developed for future empirical validation.

Originality/value

This is the first study which synthesises various dimensions of GS strategy and GS structure and advances/extends the theory of the strategy-structure nexus to a GS context. The conceptual model provides a comprehensive framework for future empirical work and opens avenues of research on this topic.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 37 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2021

Min Zhang, Qiuping Huang, Xiande Zhao and Lijun Ma

In this study, we examine the implementation of purchase order finance (POF) which is an innovative supply chain finance (SCF) solution by an innovative SCF lender (i.e…

Abstract

Purpose

In this study, we examine the implementation of purchase order finance (POF) which is an innovative supply chain finance (SCF) solution by an innovative SCF lender (i.e. supply chain service provider (SCSP)). The effect of information integration between the SCSP (lender) and product designers (borrowers) on the lender's POF decisions and the borrowers' new product launch is investigated.

Design/methodology/approach

We conduct a case study in the Chinese smartphone industry. A mixed methods design is used, and data are collected from both the supply chain service provider (SCSP) and product designers. We first conduct a qualitative study. Hypotheses are developed concerning the relationships between information integration, in terms of social interaction and information system integration, POF and new product launch. We then conduct a quantitative study. The multilevel structural equation modelling method is used to test the hypotheses.

Findings

We find that information system integration is positively associated with POF but has no significant effect on new product launch. Social interaction is negatively associated with POF but positively associated with new product launch. POF is positively associated with new product launch.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the literature by empirically examining the implementation of POF from both the lender's and borrower's perspectives. We find that information system integration and social interaction have different effects on POF and new product launch. The results thus provide insights into how a lender makes POF decisions and reveal the benefits of POF for borrowers.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 41 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 20 January 2021

Chang Chen, Zhe Zhang and Ming Jia

The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of stretch goals on unethical behavior and explore the mediating role of ambivalent identification and moderating role…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of stretch goals on unethical behavior and explore the mediating role of ambivalent identification and moderating role of competitive psychological climate.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 350 MBA students from Northwestern China completed the two-phase survey. The bootstrapping analysis outlined by Hayes was used to assess a moderated mediation model.

Findings

This study found that stretch goals could trigger employees' unethical behavior via ambivalent identification. Competitive psychological climate intensified the relationship between stretch goals and ambivalent identification. Moreover, such a climate aggravated the indirect effect of stretch goals on unethical behavior via ambivalent identification.

Practical implications

Organizations and managers should use stretch goals prudently and implement measures to reduce the ethical cost.

Originality/value

This study provides unique contributions by identifying ambivalent identification as an important mediator and competitive psychological climate as a boundary condition of stretch goals' disruptive effect on unethical behavior.

Details

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

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2011

Jia Beisi and Jiang Yingying

Although an important facet of modernist architecture in which function plays a prominent role, building flexibility is not entirely a new concept. Its relevance…

Abstract

Although an important facet of modernist architecture in which function plays a prominent role, building flexibility is not entirely a new concept. Its relevance transcends generations, allowing space and structure to evolve through time. This paper investigates the relationship among main building structures, infill elements, and space by studying examples in ancient Chinese architecture. It reveals the role of building owners, users, and craftsmen from a survey of historical documentation. In studying these examples, it is concluded that craftsmen in ancient China were involved not only during the construction phase but throughout the period of use as well. Thus, in select cases, the relationship between craftsmen and owners or users had been preserved for generations. Finally, this paper suggests potential strategies for the building industry and technology in the move towards sustainable development.

Details

Open House International, vol. 36 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0168-2601

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Article
Publication date: 26 October 2018

Philipp C. Sauer and Stefan Seuring

This study aims to investigate the under-researched role of the sub-supplier’s direct environment in achieving compliance with multi-tier sustainable supply chain…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the under-researched role of the sub-supplier’s direct environment in achieving compliance with multi-tier sustainable supply chain management (MT-SSCM) objectives.

Design/methodology/approach

Building on conceptual research, this study aims to generalize the characteristics of multi-tier supply chains in light of institutional theory and supply chain (SC) uncertainty to enhance the understanding of their complex interrelationship.

Findings

A three-dimensional framework is built around the supply and demand uncertainty as well as the pressures for sustainability exerted by the supplier’s direct environment to propose ideal constellations for the application of MT-SSCM. Moreover, research directions and implications for the alteration of suboptimal constellations are developed.

Practical implications

Incorporating the supplier’s environment in the choice of MT-SSCM practices couples the sustainability priorities of the focal firm and the supplier. This enables a more complete picture of the sustainability objectives and sustainable development aims of the SC partners.

Originality/value

On the basis of institutional theory, the study extends current MT-SSCM concepts by including the supplier’s direct environment in the choice of ideal management practices in a particular SC setup. It provides a definition of a multi-tier SC as an institutional field and a number of research implications regarding MT-SSCM as well as generic SSCM. Moreover, the proposed framework helps SC managers to understand the complex interplay of the SC partners’ sustainability aims and provides implications for choosing the most suitable MT-SSCM practices.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 23 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

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Article
Publication date: 25 July 2019

Jing Jia, Zhongtian Li and Lois Munro

This paper aims to examine the relationship between risk management committees (RMCs) and risk management disclosure (RMD) quality. Specifically, the existence of…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the relationship between risk management committees (RMCs) and risk management disclosure (RMD) quality. Specifically, the existence of stand-alone RMCs and a number of RMC characteristics, including RMC size, RMC independence, number of RMC meetings and RMC members’ human capital is investigated.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample comprises top 100 Australian Securities Exchange (ASX)-listed companies during the period between 2010 and 2012, when RMD began to be guided by detailed recommendations in Australia. Following the RMD framework used by Jia et al. (2016), RMD quality is measured based on its quantity, relevance, width and depth. Ordinary least squares (OLS) regressions were used to test the relationship between stand-alone RMC, RMC characteristics and RMD quality.

Findings

The results show that the existence of a stand-alone RMC, the human capital of RMC and RMC size are positively associated with RMD quality. In contrast, RMC independence and the number of RMC meetings are not found to have a significant association with RMD quality.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the current RMD literature by investigating whether a stand-alone RMC and different RMC characteristics are associated with RMD quality. The results of this study provide useful and new empirical evidence about the relationship between RMCs and RMD quality for researchers, companies, and regulators.

Details

Pacific Accounting Review, vol. 31 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0114-0582

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Article
Publication date: 21 November 2016

Ronnie Jia, Blaize Horner Reich and Heather H. Jia

This study aims to extend service climate research from its existing focus on routine service for external clients into a knowledge-intensive, internal (KII) service…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to extend service climate research from its existing focus on routine service for external clients into a knowledge-intensive, internal (KII) service setting. This extension was important because internal knowledge workers may operate from a monopolistic perspective and not view themselves as service providers because of the technical/professional nature of their work.

Design/methodology/approach

Two surveys were distributed in participating organizations. One survey, completed by employees in information technology (IT) service units, contains measures of service climate, climate antecedents and technical competence. The second survey, filled out by members of their corporate customer units, taps their evaluations of service quality.

Findings

Service climate in IT service units significantly predicted service evaluations by their respective customer units. Importantly, service climate was more predictive than IT service employees’ technical competency. Role ambiguity, empowerment and work facilitation were also found to be significant service climate antecedents.

Research limitations/implications

These results provided strong empirical evidence supporting an extension of the existing service climate research to KII service settings. To the extent that front-line service employees rely on internal support to deliver quality service to external customers, managers should work to enhance the service climate in internal support units, which ultimately improves external service quality.

Originality/value

This is the first study that establishes the robustness of the service climate construct in KII service settings. It makes service climate a useful managerial tool for improving both internal and external service quality.

Details

International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences, vol. 8 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-669X

Keywords

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