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The purpose of this paper is to focuss on customer driven supply chains and what this means for the management of freight transport, a key process in the supply chain as…
The purpose of this paper is to focuss on customer driven supply chains and what this means for the management of freight transport, a key process in the supply chain as it acts as a physical link between customers and suppliers. It aims to assess whether some of the new collaborative models for transport management are delivering better optimised solutions.
The paper is based on a multi‐dimensional methodological approach, which includes empirical, model building, opinion and archival evidence. Much of the thinking and findings in this paper have been derived from a series of quasi‐delphi discussion sessions with logistics industry experts from three sectors, steel, grocery and construction and experienced academics in the fields of logistics and supply chain management.
The paper sets out to argue that new innovative solutions are emerging for better transport optimisation, that exploit the competitive power of collaboration, both vertically with supply chain partners and horizontally with other logistics service providers (LSPs).
The research was largely focused on the road freight transport industry in the UK and Europe. However, it is felt that similar thinking can be deployed in other settings for alternative transport modes and other geographical regions. From an academic perspective the paper contributes to the notion that supply chain management as well as focussing on vertical coordination and process integration also needs to incorporate the potential considerable power of horizontal collaboration.
In particular it is original in that it highlights how important it is to combine vertical collaboration with horizontal collaboration if better optimised transport solutions are to be achieved. This is of considerable value and interest both to practitioner and academic communities.
Pricing and positioning strategies are of increasing strategic importance and are crucial to the long‐term competitiveness of small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs)…
Pricing and positioning strategies are of increasing strategic importance and are crucial to the long‐term competitiveness of small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs). Following the introduction of the Single European Currency (referred to as the “Euro” throughout this paper), the paper suggests that there will be a major squeeze on price differentials between European Union (EU) member states, creating a danger that existing price‐based positioning strategies will be undermined. This “European pricing and positioning time bomb” will affect UK SMEs (as well as larger businesses) over their short‐term planning horizon, even if UK entry into the Euro is delayed indefinitely. Strategic responses to the Euro will be most effective if they are planned and implemented at the earliest possible time. This paper explores and analyses the findings from a small sample survey of export‐active, consumer goods manufacturing, Northampton SMEs, carried out in late 1997. The aim is to establish their existing pricing and positioning strategies for EU Europe, their preparedness at that time for the introduction of the Euro and the main forms which their pricing and positioning strategies for the Euro were then taking. The findings suggest that most of the SMEs surveyed were in the early stages of planning for the Euro, but that many had not yet fully grasped its strategic marketing significance. Three categories of current marketing postures are identified: price standardisation, price but not product differentiation, and price differentiation supported by product differentiation between EU markets. The paper concludes by evaluating the effectiveness of responses based on these three alternative categories to the new marketing environment in EU Europe that the Euro will create. A set of strategic recommendations is also made for SMEs’ pricing and positioning strategies in the Euro context.
With the growth of worldwide e‐commerce, companies are increasingly targeting foreign online consumers. However, there is a dearth of evidence as to whether global…
With the growth of worldwide e‐commerce, companies are increasingly targeting foreign online consumers. However, there is a dearth of evidence as to whether global consumers prefer to browse and buy from standardized global web sites or web sites adapted to their local cultures. This study provides evidence from five different countries as to whether global consumers prefer local web content or standardized web content. The study also measures how the degree of cultural adaptation on the web affects consumer perception of site effectiveness.
American radical economists in the 1960s perceived China under Maoism as an important experiment in creating a new society, aspects of which they hoped could serve as a…
American radical economists in the 1960s perceived China under Maoism as an important experiment in creating a new society, aspects of which they hoped could serve as a model for the developing world. But the knowledge of “actually existing Maoism” was very limited due to the mutual isolation between China and the US. This chapter analyses the First Friendship Delegation of American Radical Political Economists (FFDARPE) to the People’s Republic of China in 1972, consisting mainly of Union for Radical Political Economics (URPE) members, which was the first visit of a group of American economists to China since 1949. Based on interviews with trip participants as well as archival and published material, this chapter studies what we can learn about the engagement with Maoism by American radical economists from their dialogues with Chinese hosts, from their on-the-ground observations, and their reflection upon return. We show how the visitors’ own ideas conflicted and intersected with their perception of the Maoist practice on gender relations, workers’ management, and life in the communes. We also shed light on the diverging conceptions of the role for economic expertise between URPE and late Maoism. As the first in-depth study on the FFDARPE, we provide rich empirical insights into an ice-breaking event in the larger process of normalization in the Sino-US relations, which ultimately led to the disillusionment of the Left with China.
Introduces the special issue to mark the 10th anniversary of Lauchlin Currie's death. Currie was an economist described as the intellectual leader of the spending wing of Roosevelt's New Deal.
The big changes over recent years and their rapid development in Food Retailing have resulted in different shopping practices, for the institution, the hotel, restaurant and the home. Different cuisines have developed, foods purchased, both in cooking practices and eating habits, especially in the home. Gone are the old fashioned home economics, taking with them out of the diet much that was enjoyed and from which the families benefitted in health and stomach satisfaction. In very recent times, the changes have become bigger, developments more rapid, and the progress continues. Bigger and bigger stores, highly departmentalised, mechanical aids of every description, all under one roof, “complex” is an appropriate term for it; large open spaces for the housewife with a car. The development is in fact aimed at the bulk buyer — rapid turnover — the small household needs, not entirely neglected, but not specially catered for. Daily cash takings are collosal. This is what the small owner‐occupied general store, with its many domestic advantages, has come to fall in the late twentieth century.
OF all trades or professions, with pretensions to some measure of specialization, if not learning, librarianship is the only one which does not make preliminary technical training an absolute condition of entrance to its fellowship. We know, from past experience, that the ranks of the library profession are filled from all sorts of sources and by all kinds of men, very few of whom can show a diploma, or any kind of certificate, beyond their own word and the testimony of interested friends, to prove that they possess any special qualification for the work. In this respect librarianship differs from every other branch of the municipal and public educational services of the country. There is no independent test of fitness applied, even for positions of great responsibility, and librarians hold tenure of their offices by means of credentials which would not be accepted in the case of most town clerks, medical officers, accountants, surveyors, schoolmasters, and even sanitary inspectors. We are assumed to possess qualifications of a profound and immense range, but, beyond the undoubted power to announce this, by means of the voices and tongues with which we are lavishly endowed, our references are, for the most part, testimonies to character and experience, rather than to scientific training and professional capacity. Mr. X. spends fifteen years in the service of the O. Public Library, which was organised by a superannuated railway guard in 1862, on lines which were, no doubt, suggested by his former experience in dealing with parcels, passengers, and other luggage. This system has the merit of being based upon the science of Mathematics, because number is the main factor relied upon in every department, and for every purpose. It may, possess, moreover, an elementary relationship to the science of literature by making some use of the ordinary English alphabet, and so we have a combination of letters and numerals which is satisfactory evidence that the librarian was no fool, although he was only a railway guard. His literary methods are, therefore, of the A, B, C, 1, 2, 3. type, and all his assistants are carefully trained in the art of preserving bibliographical order by observing that 5 comes between 4 and 6, and q after p. Now, the assistant who has been brought up in this kind of library may have 15 years' so‐called experience behind him to which he can proudly refer, when applying for a chief post, and there is nothing on earth to show that he does not know absolutely everything about literature, bibliography and library methods—ancient and modern, retrograde and advanced, childish and scientific, or that he is not, in every sense of the word, a Complete Librarian. Indeed, the possession of such an imposing qualification as Fifteen Years' Experience is enough to intimidate any ordinary committee who have no standards by which to compare such a phenomenon. There is no standard by which we can at present judge the qualifications of any librarian, unless he is ass enough to reveal his shortcomings by writing books and papers, and what is really happening every day is simply that appointments are being made on the successful candidate's own valuation of his fitness. He is not tested as regards his professional ability at all, and library authorities are driven to appoint men who have had a long term of experience, no matter how elementary or antiquated it may be. They cannot do anything else in the absence of proper training schools, and certificates of special knowledge, issued by independent and impartial examining bodies. It is quite common to hear librarians boasting about their ten, twenty, or thirty years of experience, who would be sorely put to it to answer intelligently any ordinary question in English literature, systematic classification, or bibliography. These men have managed to establish a kind of freehold for mere experience, minus every other qualification, and it is their continuance in office which has prevented Public Libraries from being more liberally recognised by both State and local authorities. This absurd substitution of mere experience in feeble and unworthy methods, for systematic training in the higher departments of librarianship, has produced a race of self‐sufficient librarians—inferior in general intelligence to commercial clerks and shopmen—who have succeeded, by their narrow‐minded mal‐administration and absence of culture, to thoroughly eradicate any little scrap of confidence in the Public Library idea originally cherished by the people. It is fashionable among those gentlemen to blame parliamentary and municipal stinginess and indifference, as the sole causes of the inadequate financial provision to be squeezed out of a 1d. rate. They can account for everything on this theory—small salaries, invisible book‐funds, poor buildings equipped with inferior furniture, and so on—forgetting, in their inflated self‐sufficiency, how much of this neglect and indifference is due to their own ignorance and failure to interest either people or governors. The argument that everything must wait till the penny rate is abolished is the refuge of everyone who has failed to realize the important fact that, if recognition is wanted, it must be worked for. It may be taken as pretty conclusive that the failure of Public Libraries to obtain greater support from the people and Parliament is due largely to an all‐round failure to meet public needs in a thoroughly efficient manner. It matters not if some twenty or thirty places are managed on business‐like and scientific lines. They cannot influence other places at a distance, scattered all over the Kingdom to the number of 450, and inaccessible in other respects to the reformative effect of a good example. There are plenty of superior, cock‐sure librarians going about, with all the authority conferred by twenty years' experience—and nothing else—telling the people that the utmost degree of accomplishment to be had for a penny has been reached. This alone is enough to counteract the good work of fifty well‐managed libraries. The people say to themselves, “If our library represents all we can get for a penny, and our librarian is the sort of man we may expect in the future, what's the good of paying more for a double dose of the same kind of outfit?”
China around 1900 was an enormous domain with approximately 400 million people, almost all of them desperately poor. Most were farmers, working intensively on small tracts…
China around 1900 was an enormous domain with approximately 400 million people, almost all of them desperately poor. Most were farmers, working intensively on small tracts of land using relatively primitive technology. It was in many respects a Malthusian economy, with high death and birth rates and many residents living close to the subsistence level.
The purpose of this paper is to analyze relationships between operational characteristics and business growth in Italian manufacturing companies comparing high lean…
The purpose of this paper is to analyze relationships between operational characteristics and business growth in Italian manufacturing companies comparing high lean performers (HLPs), which are companies with a high degree of application of lean practices, and low lean performers (LLPs). This analysis aims at highlighting the effect of the implementation level of lean practices on operational characteristics of Italian companies and, as a consequence, on business growth.
A classification in “LLPs” and “HLPs” of Italian manufacturing industries has been developed in order to measure the company’s degree of application of lean practices. A survey was carried out, and a combination of cluster analysis and multi-group structural equation path model was developed in order to answer research hypotheses.
Results suggest that HLPs are characterized by a greater number of employees and a larger turnover. The operational characteristics that contribute to the business growth owing to the introduction of lean practices are as follows: the range of different finished products managed, the delivery reliability, and speedy response to warranty claim. No differences between HLPs and LLPs in terms of business growth have been highlighted when companies vary the batch size, reduce the medium production time, reduce the percentage of finished products which are subject to claim, and increase the percentage (of turnover) of R&D investment. The study highlights that “LLPs” companies are apparently capable of changing their production schemes and adjusting themselves better for customizing their products.
Companies that aim at implementing lean practices should focus their attention on practices that affect the operational characteristics that contribute to the business growth. Moreover, because of the complexity and effort for the implementation of certain lean practices connected to supplier, workforce, quality, and production efficiency, these practices are more suitable only for large firms with enough resources.
As an attempt to offer strategic and operational perspective on Italian lean practices implementation, this study examined how the degree of application of the different lean practices has an impact on operational and companies’ performance. Hence, even if the present study is limited to the Italian manufacturing companies, it could be a representative of companies that are operating in developed countries that are facing the so-called “anemic growth.”