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Article
Publication date: 25 May 2012

Markku Kuula and Antero Putkiranta

The purpose of this paper is to explore the possibilities and pitfalls of longitudinal studies in the field of operations management (OM).

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1117

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the possibilities and pitfalls of longitudinal studies in the field of operations management (OM).

Design/methodology/approach

A longitudinal study conducted in Finland was analyzed from the methodological point of view. In the theoretical part, a framework for analyses was created by studying the literature of longitudinal studies within and without the OM field.

Findings

Longitudinal studies are important in revealing root‐cause effects. They are particularly important in generating new ideas and theories and in questioning old ones. However, longitudinal studies are somewhat difficult to conduct and some unexpected challenges may arise, such as the effect of technology development on data retrieval.

Research limitations/implications

The analyses in this study are based on the data obtained in a longitudinal study conducted in the years 1993, 2004 and 2010. The sample in the longitudinal study is quite small for real quantitative statistical analysis, and therefore the conclusions made here are only indicative. However, the purpose of this study is to give some hints and guidance, and thus the lessons learned are valuable.

Originality/value

There are only a few studies describing methodological issues in longitudinal studies in the field of OM, and most of these studies are purely theoretical and do not refer to real experiences. This appears to be one of the first studies describing real experiences from a longitudinal study.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 19 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2015

Anna Paola Codini

This paper aims to investigate how the relationships among the different actors within the business networks affect the evolution of innovation along the different steps…

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1395

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate how the relationships among the different actors within the business networks affect the evolution of innovation along the different steps of technology life cycle.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is supported by a longitudinal case study referred to a mechanical company operating in the knitting machineries industry. A triangulation method integrating multiple data sources in a multiple method design was used to gather data.

Findings

The longitudinal study supports the idea that interactions among the actors within the business networks heavily influence the technology evolution.

Research limitations/implications

Although the longitudinal case study reported in this paper refers to a period of time of about 10 years, our findings refer only to a single case study in a specific sector and so they cannot be generalized.

Practical implications

This paper provides important guidelines on how to manage the relationships emerging within a business network to influence the new technologies development.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to business networks literature, filling the gaps about how the relationships among the actors involved in a network can evolve over time and influence the evolution of technology in itself.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 30 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

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Article
Publication date: 5 May 2015

Laura Galloway, Isla Kapasi and Geoffrey Whittam

The purpose of this paper is to report the experiences of researchers seeking to undertake mixed methods longitudinal research in the entrepreneurship discipline. In this…

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1189

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report the experiences of researchers seeking to undertake mixed methods longitudinal research in the entrepreneurship discipline. In this research, the methodology was thoroughly planned and measures were taken to ensure longitudinal feasibility of the project. This is not what ultimately happened though. The paper reports the experience and reflects on the methodological challenges of longitudinal and qualitative studies, with a view to informing future attempts at these.

Design/methodology/approach

The initial study involved a sample of 600+ participants in a survey that investigated entrepreneurial intent and related antecedents and formed the baseline from which longitudinal comparisons would be made. A catastrophic attrition rate rendered neither follow-up statistical comparisons nor qualitative comparative analysis possible. An alternative, entirely qualitative, follow-up was therefore developed. While unintended, this in fact proved advantageous to the research.

Findings

Findings comprise reflection on the failure of the intended methodology. Longitudinal studies are notoriously difficult but within the broader social sciences, particularly those that inspect human experiences, there is a rich body of methodology expertise in terms of mitigating the challenges of engaging research subjects, and keeping them engaged over time.

Originality/value

The paper recommends, post reflection and post analysis, that greater engagement with the wider social sciences is needed in business research. As entrepreneurship research moves on to investigate the experiences of the agents of business, methods to investigate these might be better informed.

Details

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2554

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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2019

Constantinos Vasilios Priporas

Competitive intelligence (CI) is a vital tool for any company to survive and remain competitive in today’s hypercompetitive and uncertain business environment. The purpose…

Abstract

Purpose

Competitive intelligence (CI) is a vital tool for any company to survive and remain competitive in today’s hypercompetitive and uncertain business environment. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the use of CI in liquor retailing in the USA.

Design/methodology/approach

An exploratory single longitudinal case study was performed through observation and semi-structured interviews plus examining documents from secondary sources in two phases. Content analysis was used for the data analysis.

Findings

Regardless of the small size of the company, the owner has an active attitude toward monitoring competition by using various sources of information and converting it into intelligence for making sound decisions for both short-term and long-term competitiveness. Also, the central role of the owner in the CI process has been verified.

Originality/value

This study responds to calls for more case studies in the field and is the first one to explore CI in the liquor retailing ecosystem by using a longitudinal case study. In general, studies of CI in retailing are limited. It has clear value to CI practices for retailers in the USA and in general.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 47 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 5 May 2020

Beth Davis-Sramek, Rafay Ishfaq, Brian J. Gibson and Cliff Defee

The purpose of this research is to provide a theoretical explanation of the strategic and structural changes occurring in US omnichannel retail supply chains. Using…

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1265

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research is to provide a theoretical explanation of the strategic and structural changes occurring in US omnichannel retail supply chains. Using longitudinal data, the research documents transitions in retailers' supply chain strategies, specifically related to the order fulfillment process. It further offers explanation for how and why these transitions occurred.

Design/methodology/approach

This research uses a process theory lens to explain the business model transformation of the omnichannel order fulfillment process. Using a case study approach, a longitudinal multicase study was conducted with six large US retailers over a span of 10 years. Within-case and cross-case analysis identifies the sequence and rationale of different strategic and structural shifts in retailers' omnichannel order fulfillment strategy.

Findings

The within- and cross-case analyses offer insight into how the transitions occur, at what rate they occur across several different retailers, and why the rate can differ across the stages of omnichannel transition among retailers. The research documents that retailers took varied approaches to strategically develop and structurally change their order fulfillment processes in their transition to omnichannel retail. The findings reveal that these approaches are dependent on retailers' store-based logistics capabilities and specific supply chain arrangements within their retail segment.

Research limitations/implications

The longitudinal and theoretically driven approach provides researchers a better understanding of the business model transformation in US retail omnichannel operations. This approach builds theoretical context around why and how strategic and structural changes in omnichannel fulfillment occurred over time. It also explains the underlying omnichannel phenomenon more accurately than research focused on discrete changes at a single point in time.

Practical implications

The findings and managerial insights can assist practitioners in understanding how environmental changes have led to strategic and structural shifts across different stages of omnichannel fulfillment evolution. These insights also provide guidance to retailers that are currently in early stages of developing their omnichannel fulfillment strategy.

Originality/value

Logistics and fulfillment operations of retailers have changed dramatically over the last 10–15 years. The authors apply a process theory lens to explain how and why retailers have integrated their channels to achieve omnichannel success at the store level.

Details

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, vol. 50 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-0035

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Article
Publication date: 4 March 2021

Aurélien Ragaigne

This study aims to investigate the empowering and constraining effects of performance measurement. The levers of control perspective emphasises the fact that interactive…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the empowering and constraining effects of performance measurement. The levers of control perspective emphasises the fact that interactive processes play an important role in balancing these effects. This paper proposes to extend the analysis of effects in this literature, by looking at them in conjunction with the role of dialogue.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper analyses a longitudinal case study of the use of user satisfaction indicators in the reception of a French local authority. The data were collected using a three-year longitudinal case study method from semi-directive interviews and participations at meetings.

Findings

The case study shows that performance measurement was introduced to encourage reception employees to make changes to the experience of service users. Employees were involved in the design phase of the survey and in the development of proposals. The dialogue approach represented a way of encouraging employees to agree to accept changes. However, this dialogue offered greater empowerment of employees by the managers.

Research limitations/implications

Further work would be needed to enrich the characteristics of the dialogue and its effects on other performance measurement systems.

Practical implications

The dialogue between employees and managers was designed to be interactive and created a situation with both empowering and constraining effects. The method of organisation, involving regular meetings with formal tasks to be accomplished at each meeting, appears significant for the evolution of the effects.

Originality/value

We extend the levers of control perspective to demonstrate the importance of the dialogue in balancing the effects. The case study makes it easier to understand how the empowering effects are related to the objective of constraint in the dialogue approach, and how these effects evolve.

Details

Journal of Applied Accounting Research, vol. 22 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-5426

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Article
Publication date: 7 April 2015

Tomi J. Kallio, Kirsi-Mari Kallio and Annika Johanna Blomberg

The purpose of this study is to explore the potential positive effects of the design of a physical organisational environment on the emergence of an organisational culture…

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4868

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to explore the potential positive effects of the design of a physical organisational environment on the emergence of an organisational culture conducive to organisational creativity.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on an in-depth, longitudinal case study, the aim being to enhance understanding of how a change in physical space, including location, spatial organisation and architectonic details, supports cultural change.

Findings

It is suggested that physical space plays an implicit yet significant role in the emergence of a culture conducive to organisational creativity. It appears from the case analysis that there are three aspects of culture in particular, equality, openness and collectivity, that may be positively affected by the design of an organisation’s physical environment.

Practical implications

The careful choice, planning and design of an organisation’s physical location, layout and style can advance the appearance of an organisational culture conducive to creativity.

Originality/value

The paper describes a longitudinal study comparing a case organisation before and after a change in its physical environment. The longitudinal data illustrates how a change in the spatial environment contributes to the emergence of a culture conducive to organisational creativity.

Details

Facilities, vol. 33 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 29 November 2018

Ville Hallavo, Markku Kuula and Antero Putkiranta

The purpose of this paper is to study the effects of lean in a longitudinal context. Lean is currently experiencing its second coming. In spite of this, the current body…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study the effects of lean in a longitudinal context. Lean is currently experiencing its second coming. In spite of this, the current body of research on lean is especially lacking in longitudinal studies.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology used in this study is a longitudinal case study. The authors combined elements of multiple-case study and survey research by analyzing interview data on the same 23 Finnish manufacturing firms at three distinct points in time (1993, 2004 and 2010) with a methodology called qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) that is novel to the field.

Findings

The “thick” results of our exploratory contingency theoretic analysis suggest that the holistic and adaptive use of lean bundles is effective. It seems that especially the firm status of ownership and the phase of the business cycle exert an impact on successful lean bundle use. There is also evidence that a certain maturation effect takes place within lean bundle use: lean is increasingly being used as a complete management philosophy.

Research limitations/implications

The authors hope that this research encourages researchers to use more QCA in their research, especially with small samples.

Originality/value

This is a unique longitudinal study on the same 23 manufacturing firms and their development. Furthermore, this study opens new avenues for lean theory development, introduces a new methodology to the field and helps decision makers to gain a better understanding of the long-term dynamics of lean.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 30 July 2019

Louise Doyle

The purpose of this paper is to document the opportunities and challenges of a practitioner researcher in accessing interpretive case participants in the public healthcare…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to document the opportunities and challenges of a practitioner researcher in accessing interpretive case participants in the public healthcare sector in Ireland.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper documents the research design and implementation phases of a longitudinal interpretive research project with specific focus on, research ethics, preparing for data collection, identifying and recruiting the research participants and analysis of the findings based on the specific nuances of the public health context and design considerations. Considerations as an insider researcher in a large public organisation are also presented.

Findings

Conducting interpretive research in a healthcare setting presents both opportunities and some challenges; key amongst these is agreed access to research participants. In addition, with research taking place in a healthcare environment, the potential for disclosure of information regarding something harmful to patients or of a criminal nature exists. This risk can be addressed through the ethical approval process documented in this paper. Insider researcher considerations are also explored focussing on the specific nuances affiliate to carrying out a longitudinal interpretive study in a public healthcare setting.

Research limitations/implications

Insights for those wishing to conduct longitudinal interpretive case research in the public healthcare setting are included. The implications for enhanced engagement with interpretive research in this context are addressed.

Originality/value

Through documenting the opportunities and challenges of a practitioner researcher in accessing research participants in the public healthcare sector, this paper discusses insider researcher considerations and seeks to address concerns in the literature regarding insufficient detail relating to interpretive research design and implementation in healthcare contexts.

Details

Journal of Work-Applied Management, vol. 11 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2205-2062

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Article
Publication date: 5 August 2014

Sara Melén Hånell, Emilia Rovira Nordman and Dharam Deo Sharma

This paper aims to explore longitudinally a life sciences international new venture’s (INV’s) development of foreign market knowledge (FMK) and how this knowledge…

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1261

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore longitudinally a life sciences international new venture’s (INV’s) development of foreign market knowledge (FMK) and how this knowledge development relates to the firm’s entrepreneurial orientation (EO).

Design/methodology/approach

The article adopts a longitudinal case study approach to investigate an INV in the life sciences industry.

Findings

The findings show that the EO of an INV changes during its internationalisation. A strong EO, often considered to be synonymous with the early expansion of an INV, is not always able to guide the INV in its later developmental stages. In its continued internationalisation, an INV instead needs firm-specific FMK accumulated from a process of learning by doing. The knowledge development of an INV is a time-consuming process that cannot be rushed by grafting new and experienced employees.

Research limitations/implications

Future research focusing on larger and broader samples of INVs is recommended to validate this study’s results.

Practical implications

Life sciences managers need to develop their own firm-specific FMK by interacting with their foreign business partners.

Originality/value

This study contributes further insights into the FMK development processes and EO of INVs in the life sciences industry during their internationalisation. Further understanding is also provided about how the industry-specific features of an INV in the life sciences industry influence internationalisation over time. The study’s theoretical implications are that international entrepreneurship frameworks and internationalisation process theory need to be integrated to understand the longitudinal development of INVs.

Details

European Business Review, vol. 26 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0955-534X

Keywords

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