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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2018

Edward Godfrey Ochieng, Oghenemarho Omaruaye Ovbagbedia, Tarila Zuofa, Raymond Abdulai, Wilfred Matipa, Ximing Ruan and Akunna Oledinma

The purpose of this paper is to examine the efficacy of knowledge management (KM) based systems and best practices that could be used to address operational issues in the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the efficacy of knowledge management (KM) based systems and best practices that could be used to address operational issues in the oil and gas sector.

Design/methodology/approach

Given little was known empirically about the strategies and practices which contribute to improved performance, innovation and continuous improvement in the oil and gas sector qualitative method was used. Semi-structured interviews were used to derive senior managers’ constructs of project delivery efficiency and KM based systems. The interviews were analysed through the use of a qualitative analysis software package NUDIST NVivoTM. Participants were selected using purposive sampling. Validity and reliability were achieved by first assessing the plausibility in terms of already existing knowledge on some of the operational issues raised by participants.

Findings

These were synthesised into a framework capturing seven well-defined stages. All these steps emerged as being related; they are comprised of independent variables. These steps were found to comprise of knowledge management technology approaches, knowledge management people approaches, KM strategies and value enhancing practices.

Research limitations/implications

Although the findings are pertinent to oil and gas organisations, it will be important to conduct follow-up research validating the potential for using the results of this study to establish frameworks for knowledge and information management in different organisations and contexts. This will provide not only data about the validity of the framework in generic terms but will also generate additional data on the application of KM strategy.

Practical implications

As shown in this study, successful KM based systems requires the aligning of business strategy, technology for KM, project management operations with an enterprise knowledge-sharing culture. Such sharing requires managing the behaviour of project personnel such that knowledge transfer becomes part of the organisation’s norm.

Social implications

The implementation of KM based systems requires deliberate planning and action to create the conditions for success and put in place the strategy, leadership, goals, process, skills, systems, issue resolution, and structure to direct and exploit the dynamic nature of project work. The strategies proposed in this research cannot be expected to resolve all KM issues in the oil and gas sector. However, their use defines an approach that is superior to the traditional approaches typically adopted and consequently merits far wider application.

Originality/value

The proposed framework presents a better way of optimising the performance of project-based operations thus enabling oil and gas organisations to reform their poor performance on projects and empower them to better manage emerging cultural challenges in their future projects. Reflecting on their experiences, the participants confirmed that the proposed KM framework and its seven well-defined stages were central to the effectiveness of KM in oil and gas operations. Although the scope of this research was restricted to projects in Nigeria and the UK, the geographical focus of this research does not invalidate these results with respect to other countries. The fact is that the oil and gas sector globally shares some common fundamental characteristics.

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2017

Khulod Elsahati, Edward Godfrey Ochieng, Tarila Zuofa, Ximing Ruan and Bekithemba Mpofu

In recent times, electricity as one of the most important energy sources has witnessed considerable decreases in consumption figures. These cutbacks have been mainly due…

Abstract

Purpose

In recent times, electricity as one of the most important energy sources has witnessed considerable decreases in consumption figures. These cutbacks have been mainly due to the growing increasing living standards, minimal governance and political fracture. Thus, this paper aims to appraise the supply of electricity side in an attempt to propose a sustainable electricity framework.

Design/methodology/approach

The reviewed literature identified a gap within the previous literature which had not previously been investigated; however, to carry out the investigation, a research strategy had to be formulated. Twenty semi-structured interviews were carried out with managers, engineers and electrical professionals. Prior to the commencement of the main study, a preliminary pilot study was carried out among ten senior practitioners in the General Electric Company of Libya. The purpose of the pilot study was to assess clarity of questions, timing and suitability of the respondents for the study, and to establish its reliability and validity.

Findings

From the aspect of the demand, the study found that there was a diverse set of factors that affect electricity demand in Libya. These included the average real price of electricity, the real value of the imported electrical appliances, gross domestic product, population, the temperature difference and the lagged electricity demand. Secondly, from the aspect of electricity supply, the study found that there was a diverse set of factors that affect electricity projects in Libya or even the development of existing projects. These factors included electricity demand, political effects, recession, oil prices and improved development of other infrastructure.

Research limitations/implications

Due to limitations in time and cost, political instability in the country and the lack of security, the entire analysis was only of the demand for electricity in Libya based on data collected from secondary sources and primary data resources. The ordinary least squares method of regression used for the purpose of quantitative analysis only included the factors related to the demand for electricity in Libya. It is worth noting that the research work did not include any quantitative analysis that comprised factors related to the supply of electricity in the country. Such an analysis could have technically carved the ways to augment the supply of electricity. Therefore, the context of the research work is one-sided that focuses primarily on the demand.

Practical implications

The problem confronting development of electricity projects in Libya has three components: The first is the national significance of the projects as a physical resource. The second is the conflict arising politically from within. The third is the lack of consideration given to the specific resource management issues associated with the projects within the government plans and policy statements. In addition, participants further claimed that there were three more independent factors that could affect the level of electricity demand in Libya. These were urbanisation, industrialisation and literacy rates.

Social implications

The participants also believed that as the rate of socio-economic development increases, the demand for electricity is expected to rise. Urbanisation, industrialisation and literacy rates are some of the developments which will exert more demand pressure on the electricity supply. The participants claimed that the government should take into account the urbanisation rates in Libya in the energy policy formulation. Electricity companies can also take a cue from the urbanisation trends and other socio-economic developments to plan the delivery of electricity according to the rising demand.

Originality/value

This study appraised the supply of electricity side in Libya and proposed a sustainable framework that could be used by policymakers to address energy demand issues in Libya.

Details

International Journal of Energy Sector Management, vol. 11 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6220

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 15 August 2017

Tarila Zuofa and Edward G. Ochieng

This paper aims to extend the extant knowledge on virtual teams by examining the challenges of virtual project teams in organisations in Nigeria.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to extend the extant knowledge on virtual teams by examining the challenges of virtual project teams in organisations in Nigeria.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected through semi-structured interviews. Totally, 20 interviews were recorded, transcribed and analysed. Validity and reliability were achieved by first assessing the plausibility in terms of already existing knowledge on some of the virtual project team issues identified by participants.

Findings

The findings from this study confirmed the growing relevance of virtual project teams in highly competitive global business environments. It emerged that some of the challenges identified in the study had some level of congruence with those previously identified from similar studies from other geographical locations. The findings also suggested that challenges in virtual project teams can be linked to the organisation, the project team and the virtual environment or even a combination of all.

Practical implications

The present study corroborates the position that managing virtual project teams requires additional efforts to attain their objectives through effective communications and the adoption of appropriate technology.

Originality/value

The originality of this study lies in its exploration of virtual project team challenges in a sub-Saharan Africa country (Nigeria). By identifying the challenges associated with virtual project teams, stakeholders will be better able to successfully establish and manage virtual project teams better.

Details

Team Performance Management: An International Journal, vol. 23 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-7592

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Edward G. Ochieng, Andrew D.F. Price, Charles O. Egbu, Ximing Ruan and Tarila Zuofa

The purpose of this paper was to examine UK shale gas viability. The recent commitment to shale gas exploration in the UK through fracking has given rise to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper was to examine UK shale gas viability. The recent commitment to shale gas exploration in the UK through fracking has given rise to well-publicised economic benefits and environmental concerns. There is potential for shale gas exploration in different parts of the UK over the next couple of decades. As argued in this study, if it does, it would transform the energy market and provide long-term energy security at affordable cost.

Design/methodology/approach

Interviews with senior practitioners and local communities were recorded, transcribed and entered into qualitative research software Nvivo. Validity and reliability were achieved by first assessing the plausibility in terms of already existing knowledge on some of the economic and environmental issues raised by participants.

Findings

Findings from this study suggest that environmental, health and safety risks can be managed effectively provided operational best practices are implemented and monitored by the Health and Safety Executive; Department of Energy, Climate Change; and the Mineral Planning Authorities. Participants further suggested that the integration of shale gas technology will protect consumers against rising energy prices and ensure that government does not get exposed to long-term geopolitical risks.

Practical implications

The present study corroborates the position that environmental, health and safety risks can be managed effectively provided operational best practices are implemented and monitored by the Health and Safety Executive; Department of Energy, Climate Change; and the Mineral Planning Authorities.

Social implications

The present study confirms that the government is committed to ensuring that the nation maximises the opportunity that cost-effective shale gas technology presents, not just investment, cheap energy bills and jobs but providing an energy mix that will underpin the UK long-term economic prosperity.

Originality/value

The present study corroborates the position that environmental, health and safety risks can be managed effectively provided operational best practices are implemented and monitored by the Health and Safety Executive; Department of Energy, Climate Change; and the Mineral Planning Authorities. As shown in this study, the UK has a very strong regulatory regime compared to USA; therefore, environmental, health and safety risks will be very well managed and unlikely to escalate into the crisis being envisioned.

Details

International Journal of Energy Sector Management, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6220

Keywords

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