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Article
Publication date: 30 August 2018

Carlos F. Gomes, Michael H. Small and Mahmoud M. Yasin

The purpose of this paper is to assess the management of public-sector projects in Portugal paying particular attention to the extent to which total quality management…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the management of public-sector projects in Portugal paying particular attention to the extent to which total quality management (TQM) principles are being utilized in such projects.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on an extensive review of the literature, nine propositions are advanced about the interrelationships among seven factors that were identified, in a previous study, as having some influence on the management process in the planning and implementation of public-sector projects in Portugal. Structural equation modeling was used to investigate these propositions using data obtained from 211 respondents to a survey of project managers from municipalities across Portugal.

Findings

The results of the structural equation model indicate that the TQM components working in tandem with project-management-specific variables provide a systematic means of managing the planning and implementation stages of projects, with technical items being critical in the planning stage and softer management items becoming important in the implementation stage.

Research limitations/implications

Readers should be careful not to generalize the findings in a global context or for private sector projects. However, researchers are encouraged to extend this study by including other planning and implementation variables with a view to discerning what particular characteristics of a project make it more amenable to TQM solutions.

Practical implications

The findings are presented to show how the key components of TQM, customer focus, employee involvement and continuous involvement, can be applied during the planning and implementation stages of projects.

Originality/value

The sample size of 211 is representative of the underlying population of project managers in municipalities across Portugal and is comparatively large in relation to other empirical project management studies from Portugal, lending credence to the generalizability of these finding to public-sector projects in Portugal.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

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Article
Publication date: 12 June 2007

Michael H. Small

The purpose of this paper is to present the results of an investigation of advanced manufacturing technology (AMT) implementation practices and performance at 82…

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1424

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present the results of an investigation of advanced manufacturing technology (AMT) implementation practices and performance at 82 discrete‐parts durable goods manufacturing plants in the USA.

Design/methodology/approach

A mail survey was used to gather information about: the types of AMT that the plants were using; the planning, justification and installation activities that were used to support the adoption of these technologies; and changes in plant performance that could be attributed to the AMT adoptions. Several propositions that were derived from the AMT literature are tested.

Findings

Our results indicate that firms that are desirous of adopting integrated technologies should be prepared to exert considerable effort on: fostering a supportive planning environment; integrating investment justification; engendering human and technology resource consistency; and promoting team‐based project planning and installation. Additionally, our analysis indicates that effort on three of these components contribute to explaining improvements in firm performance.

Research limitations/implications

Although this research unveiled some significant findings, there is a need for testing of the propositions on a larger scale.

Practical implications

The managerial framework that is developed in this paper will be particularly useful to firms that are in the pre‐planning stages of AMT adoption or that are considering adding new AMT to their existing technology portfolio.

Originality/value

While most AMT research studies simply report, discuss and explain their findings, this paper goes further by harnessing the findings into a simple managerial framework for the adoption of AMT that is easy to understand and implement.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 18 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2006

Michael H. Small

This paper seeks to present the results of an investigation on the justification of investments in advanced manufacturing technology (AMT) at manufacturing plants in the…

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2467

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to present the results of an investigation on the justification of investments in advanced manufacturing technology (AMT) at manufacturing plants in the USA. Unlike previous research that explored the adoption and use of a specific AMT or groups of similar AMT, this study focuses on a plant's combination of technologies or its technology portfolio.

Design/methodology/approach

Mail survey responses from a sample of 82 plants are used to examine the relationships between the type of technology portfolio being used and the justification approaches and evaluation techniques that were utilized to justify these investments. The study also investigates the level of functional integration and the level of effort applied to several activities during the justification stage of the AMT projects.

Findings

The majority of plants that had adopted the more complex technology portfolios were using hybrid (economic and strategic) justification approaches supported by ratio and discounted cash flow justification techniques. Plants that were using the less complex portfolio also used hybrid approaches, but tended to concentrate on the use of ratio techniques. Findings on the level of functional integration at various stages of the AMT project are also reported.

Research limitations/implications

This research concentrated on discrete‐parts durable goods producers in the USA. Further studies are needed to determine whether the findings can be generalized across other industries or in other countries.

Originality/value

This research uses an innovative portfolio analysis approach to investigate the important topic of justification of AMT. Managerial implications arising from the results of this study and a number of new research avenues are advanced.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 106 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

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Article
Publication date: 15 May 2007

Denise L. Peroune

The purpose of this article is to investigate the role peer relationships play in making tacit knowledge explicit and accessible in the wider organization and whether they…

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2359

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to investigate the role peer relationships play in making tacit knowledge explicit and accessible in the wider organization and whether they contribute to learning in a learning environment.

Design/methodology/approach

A dominant‐less dominant design, with the qualitative design being the dominant paradigm. Semi‐structured interviews provided qualitative data while the dimensions of the learning organization questionnaire (DLOQ) yielded quantitative data.

Findings

It was found that peer relationships provide the context within which sensemaking can take place and that the peer relationship by definition is the context within which these constructs already function effectively.

Research limitations/implications

The findings are relevant to this case, a small organization within a specific industry, printing, and so cannot be generalized. Existing research addresses sensemaking in hierarchical organizations. Future research should address sensemaking in the context of the flatter organization. Such research must look at the role of peer relationships.

Originality/value

Adds to limited existing body of knowledge peer relationships. Shows how peer relationships can contribute to learning within the organization through the use of dialogue, inquiry, and the process of sensemaking and that the learning organization is environment in which sharing of tacit knowledge can take place.

Details

Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 31 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 1993

MICHAEL J. NUSCA

An aerothermodynamic design code for axisymmetric projectiles has been developed using a viscous‐inviscid interaction scheme. Separate solution procedures for the inviscid…

Abstract

An aerothermodynamic design code for axisymmetric projectiles has been developed using a viscous‐inviscid interaction scheme. Separate solution procedures for the inviscid and the viscous (boundary layer) fluid dynamic equations are coupled by an iterative solution procedure. Non‐equilibrium, equilibrium and perfect gas boundary layer equations are included. The non‐equilibrium gas boundary layer equations assume a binary mixture (two species; atoms and molecules) of chemically reacting perfect gases. Conservation equations for each species include finite reaction rates applicable to high temperature air. The equilibrium gas boundary layer equations assume infinite rate reactions, while the perfect gas equations assume no chemical reactions. Projectile near‐wall and surface flow profiles (velocity, pressure, density, temperature and heat transfer) representing converged solutions to both the inviscid and viscous equations can be obtained in less than two minutes on minicomputers. A technique for computing local reverse flow regions is included. Computations for yawed projectiles are accomplished using a coordinate system transformation technique that is valid for small angle‐of‐attack. Computed surface pressure, heat transfer rates and aerodynamic forces and moments for 1.25 &le Mach No. &le 10.5 are compared to wind tunnel and free flight measurements on flat plate, blunt‐cone, and projectile geometries such as a cone‐cylinder‐flare.

Details

Engineering Computations, vol. 10 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-4401

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1983

Michael R. Czinkota and Michael L. Ursic

This article reports the findings of a survey of export attitudes and behavior of small‐ and medium‐sized U.S. manufacturing firms. Companies are differentiated according…

Abstract

This article reports the findings of a survey of export attitudes and behavior of small‐ and medium‐sized U.S. manufacturing firms. Companies are differentiated according to their growth expectations and the behaviors of firms that have export growth expectations are compared to the behavior of firms that do not anticipate export growth. The authors suggest that the export growth expectations of a firm shape its behavior in terms of contact activities and its perceptions of export problems. Recommendations are made regarding the use and helpfulness of outside information sources.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 1 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

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Abstract

Details

Taxing the Hard-to-tax: Lessons from Theory and Practice
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-828-5

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2003

Michael Mainelli

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75

Abstract

Details

Balance Sheet, vol. 11 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0965-7967

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1989

Michael Rawlinson

The majority of employment within the mechanical engineering sector involves production in batches rather than in continuous mass production. Furthermore, over 40% of all…

Abstract

The majority of employment within the mechanical engineering sector involves production in batches rather than in continuous mass production. Furthermore, over 40% of all employment in this sector is in firms of less than 200 employees, this compares with a national average of about 22% and an increasing proportion of the nation's batch engineering is thought to be done by small subcontracting firms. Mechanical engineering comprises a number of activities such as, welding, forging, casting, surface finishing, but by far the most common activity is metal cutting with machine tools. The technology of metal cutting machine tools has undergone three main phases of automation, firstly partial mechanical automation, secondly, the Numerical Control (NC) of cutting tool and workpiece movement, and thirdly Computer Numerical Control (CNC). Each of these phases of automation has had distinctive effect on shaping the skill composition and task levels labour on the shop floor.

Details

Management Research News, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

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Book part
Publication date: 15 October 2013

Lovemore Ndlovu

Sociologists view the family, the most basic unit of social organization, as the cornerstone of society. As societies continue to evolve, social changes such as…

Abstract

Sociologists view the family, the most basic unit of social organization, as the cornerstone of society. As societies continue to evolve, social changes such as urbanization produce changed family structures. This has recently happened in Zimbabwe, creating new family forms such as the “small house practice”: the trend among married men to maintain a single woman as a quasi-permanent sexual partner outside official marriage. This relationship is considered subsidiary (small) compared to the official marriage; yet, it is important to the welfare of both man practicing it and the unmarried woman being looked after. The study focused on the development of the “small house practice” in Zimbabwe and its impact on the traditional family unit. The economic crisis in Zimbabwe, between 2000 and 2010, in particular, affected families negatively and also led to the proliferation of the small house. The study reveals that the family unit in Zimbabwe continues to evolve.

Details

Visions of the 21st Century Family: Transforming Structures and Identities
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-028-4

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