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Article
Publication date: 12 May 2021

Troy Heffernan, Scott Eacott and Lynn Bosetti

Universities claim to provide many benefits to their context. What remains less clear is what is meant by context. Whatever it is, context is fundamental to…

Abstract

Purpose

Universities claim to provide many benefits to their context. What remains less clear is what is meant by context. Whatever it is, context is fundamental to decision-making. Understanding what context means is crucial to understanding leadership in higher education.

Design/methodology/approach

Theoretically informed by Eacott's relational approach, this study is based on interview data from a purposive sample of ten English vice-chancellors and nine Canadian university presidents. Transcripts were analysed for the assumptions participants held regarding the work of universities and how that played out in practice.

Findings

Context is not an external variable engaged with or acted upon. It is not separate to leadership and the work of universities but is constitutive of and emergent from activities. There is no single definition of context, and this has major implications for university activities.

Research limitations/implications

Context(s) is based on assumptions. Making explicit the assumptions of participants, without pre-defining them, is a key task of research on leadership in higher education.

Practical implications

Leaders need to explicitly articulate their assumptions regarding the work of universities. Assessment should be based on the coherence between the espoused position and activities undertaken.

Originality/value

Through the emerging resources of relational scholarship, this paper demonstrates how context is constitutive of and emergent from the activities of universities. More than novel vocabulary, the paper makes a fundamental point about the generative nature of context. De-centring entities (e.g. university, leader, context) and focusing on relations our approach provide a path forward by encouraging the articulation of intended purpose(s) and perspective on the work of universities.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 35 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 12 March 2018

Troy Heffernan, Stephen Wilkins and Muhammad Mohsin Butt

The purpose of this paper is to assess the extent to which the critical relational variables of university reputation, student trust and student-university identification…

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1788

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the extent to which the critical relational variables of university reputation, student trust and student-university identification influence student behaviour towards transnational education partnerships.

Design/methodology/approach

Students undertaking British degrees at two transnational partnership locations (Hong Kong, n=203 and Sri Lanka, n=325) completed a quantitative survey questionnaire. A conceptual model was developed and tested using structural equation modelling.

Findings

University reputation and student trust were found to be significant predictors of student identification with each partner institution, and student-university identification was a significant predictor of student satisfaction, loyalty and extra-role behaviours towards both the local and foreign educational organisations.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that student relationship management strategies should focus on strengthening the higher education institution’s reputation, and increasing the students’ trust and identification with the institution. Moreover, universities should also assess potential partners for these qualities when entering into transnational education partnerships.

Originality/value

Drawing on theories of social and organisational identification, this is the first study to consider student-university identification as the linchpin between the exogenous constructs of reputation and trust, and the endogenous constructs of student satisfaction, loyalty and extra-role behaviours in both the international education and international business literatures.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

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Article
Publication date: 2 October 2021

Michael Mehmet, Troy Heffernan, Jennifer Algie and Behnam Forouhandeh

The purpose of this paper is to examine how upstream social marketing can benefit from using social media commentary to identify cognitive biases. Using reactions to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine how upstream social marketing can benefit from using social media commentary to identify cognitive biases. Using reactions to leading media/news publications/articles related to climate and energy policy in Australia, this paper aims to understand underlying community cognitive biases and their reasonings.

Design/methodology/approach

Social listening was used to gather community commentary about climate and energy policy in Australia. This allowed the coding of natural language data to determine underlying cognitive biases inherent in the community. In all, 2,700 Facebook comments were collected from 27 news articles dated between January 2018 and March 2020 using exportcomments.com. Team coding was used to ensure consistency in interpretation.

Findings

Nine key cognitive bias were noted, including, pessimism, just-world, confirmation, optimum, curse of knowledge, Dunning–Kruger, self-serving, concision and converge biases. Additionally, the authors report on the interactive nature of these biases. Right-leaning audiences are perceived to be willfully uninformed and motivated by self-interest; centric audiences want solutions based on common-sense for the common good; and left-leaning supporters of progressive climate change policy are typically pessimistic about the future of climate and energy policy in Australia. Impacts of powerful media organization shaping biases are also explored.

Research limitations/implications

Through a greater understanding of the types of cognitive biases, policy-makers are able to better design and execute influential upstream social marketing campaigns.

Originality/value

The study demonstrates that observing cognitive biases through social listening can assist upstream social marketing understand community biases and underlying reasonings towards climate and energy policy.

Details

Journal of Social Marketing, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-6763

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 15 March 2021

Ben Charters and Troy Heffernan

This paper addresses the current lack of solar photovoltaic (PV) adoption by Australian apartment dwellers by proposing a conceptual model that identifies and integrates…

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158

Abstract

Purpose

This paper addresses the current lack of solar photovoltaic (PV) adoption by Australian apartment dwellers by proposing a conceptual model that identifies and integrates the factors influencing owners' attitudes towards PV adoption.

Design/methodology/approach

The conceptual model, which this paper terms the apartment-based solar adoption (ASA) model, is developed by applying motivation–opportunity–ability (MOA) theory to relevant findings in property development, green energy and strata governance literature.

Findings

The ASA model demonstrates the process by which an apartment-owning consumer may progress from considering solar PV adoption to recommending the action to their strata property's Owners' Committee (OC). It incorporates three motivational drivers (pragmatic considerations, perceived values and perceived social norms), three conditional mediators (location accessibility, resource availability and decision-making conditions) and three requirements from the consumer (actual and perceived knowledge, the ability to participate in decision-making and social connections and status).

Research limitations/implications

This article contributes originality to research on two counts. Firstly, it provides a conceptual framework of specific relevance to issues concerning solar PV adoption, and secondly, it offers a systematic means for research into strata governance decision-making. Further research is required to develop the means with which to utilise the model prescriptively and measure longitudinal effects, such as ongoing trends in apartment owners' motivations. Further research is also recommended into how the ASA model may be utilised to identify generalisable consumer typologies among apartment owners.

Practical implications

The ASA model may assist building maintenance providers in developing and marketing solar PV services tailored to apartment residents' requirements and enhance strata managers' ability to inform and guide apartment owners. In turn, property developers would be able to review apartment-based solar projects, measure their increased value and decreased energy costs and incorporate this information when planning future developments.

Social implications

The ASA model may provide a template for apartment owners and owners' corporations considering solar PV for their property. Public policymakers could also refer to the model to incentivise apartment-based solar PV adoption, whether through designing local information campaigns, developing financial incentives or mitigating identified regulatory barriers. By facilitating solar PV adoption in Australian apartment housing, the model may ensure sustainable post-carbon energy consumption for Australia's housing stock and act as an example for high-density housing development internationally.

Originality/value

The ASA model addresses the many drivers and barriers known to affect solar PV adoption by apartment owners, presenting a framework on which to arrange these factors and outline their causal relationships. This framework may inform strata properties' future solar PV adoption initiatives by incorporating their specific physical characteristics, stakeholder dynamics and institutional structure. It also consolidates and provides generalisability to the concepts established in current literature.

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2007

André W Böhler, Troy W Heffernan and Paul J Hewson

This study examines professional soccer sponsorship as a business-to-business relationship and explores key dimensions of sponsorship success in the context of the English…

Abstract

This study examines professional soccer sponsorship as a business-to-business relationship and explores key dimensions of sponsorship success in the context of the English Premier League and the German Bundesliga. The findings suggest that commitment, satisfaction and cooperation positively influence the success of sponsorships; trust and effective communication do not emerge as significant variables. The implications for soccer clubs and sponsors are discussed and avenues for further research are suggested.

Details

International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, vol. 8 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1464-6668

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2006

Amy Hawke and Troy Heffernan

The purpose of this paper is to focus on the critical, yet under‐researched dimension of relationship development, being interpersonal liking. Liking has been found to…

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2160

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to focus on the critical, yet under‐researched dimension of relationship development, being interpersonal liking. Liking has been found to positively influence relationship success. However, these issues have not been extensively explored in the banking sector.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study methodology was adopted for this research. The unit of analysis used was the relationship dyad that exists between a business lender at a major international bank and their customer. Ten case studies were conducted with a range of techniques in an attempt to increase the reliability and validity of the findings.

Findings

Findings suggest that the interplay between similarities, communication, professionalism, trust and personality are the driving forces leading to interpersonal liking in business lender‐customer relationships. Further, the outcomes of interpersonal liking emerged as increased commitment and cooperation in the relationship and a growth in business referrals for the bank lender. These findings contribute to the limited theory on interpersonal liking.

Research limitations/implications

Several limitations emerged due to the nature of the research undertaken. These include the examination of relationships in only one major bank in Australia and the research undertaken uses cross‐sectional not longitudinal data.

Practical implications

These findings have implications for human resource management policies when recruiting personnel in relationship development rolls in the banking sector. Further, training programs aimed at developing interpersonal liking skills could be fashioned. Finally, dissemination of these findings in the banking sector would allow the important concept of interpersonal liking to gain more academic and practical attention.

Originality/value

This paper identifies what interpersonal liking is. Findings for three research questions are presented followed by an explanation of the methodology adopted.

Details

International Journal of Bank Marketing, vol. 24 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-2323

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Article
Publication date: 11 April 2008

Troy Heffernan, Grant O'Neill, Tony Travaglione and Marcelle Droulers

The two aims of this paper are to explore the development of trust for relationships between staff and customers in the banking sector and to investigate possible links…

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13578

Abstract

Purpose

The two aims of this paper are to explore the development of trust for relationships between staff and customers in the banking sector and to investigate possible links between financial performance of relationship manager and their levels of emotional intelligence (EI) and trust.

Design/methodology/approach

An internet survey was undertaken, where respondents were asked to complete an EI test and questions relating to trusting behaviour. These data were integrated with financial performance data supplied by the bank. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis and correlation analysis was used to identify links.

Findings

Trust was found to be made up of three components: dependability; knowledge; and expectations. Further, there were significant correlations between both trust and EI, when compared to the financial performance of a relationship manager.

Research limitations/implications

The methods used by the bank to collect performance data have limited the analysis that could be conducted.

Practical implications

Increased awareness by the relationship managers of their own emotions, and how they perceive and act upon the emotions of others, should favourably impact financial performance.

Originality/value

This paper is an important initial step in highlighting the significance of EI and trust in the relationship marketing/selling arena.

Details

International Journal of Bank Marketing, vol. 26 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-2323

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 30 August 2013

David Dowell, Troy Heffernan and Mark Morrison

Trust is known to have three dimensions: ability/competence, integrity/contractual and benevolence/goodwill. Yet what develops these three dimensions of trust is…

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1745

Abstract

Purpose

Trust is known to have three dimensions: ability/competence, integrity/contractual and benevolence/goodwill. Yet what develops these three dimensions of trust is relatively unknown, particularly at the different stages of the relationship lifecycle. The primary goal of this paper is improving understanding about the development of these three elements of trust. Hence, this research is undertaken within the critical growth phase of the relationship lifecycle.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach was deemed most appropriate to achieve the deep understanding needed for this type of exploratory study. Using a relationship dyad, which contained a retail manager and wholesale salesperson as the unit of investigation, 18 in‐depth semi‐structured interviews were conducted. This constituted nine case studies, which were analysed using content and thematic analysis. A purposive case selection method was used to ensure variance of cases and provide rich data.

Findings

The most interesting findings relate to how trust is developed and how this varies for the different forms of trust. For ability trust, the crucial factors in its development were performance, expertise and communication. With respect to integrity trust, honesty, integral actions and candid response were found to influence the development of trust. For benevolence, trust actions and attitudes emerged as key factors for the development of trust.

Research limitations/implications

Trust has been found to be a key component of relationship marketing success. This research extends this through providing understanding of the elements of trust and what drives the development of these elements, thus providing insights at a level more usable for the practitioner.

Originality/value

It is generally agreed that trust is a multidimensional construct; however there has been limited research on how to develop each of the three elements of trust. This research provides insight into how to develop trust, at a crucial time in the relationship growth stage. It is at this stage that partnerships can flourish or fade, hence trust is vital. Therefore, the development of ability, integrity and benevolence trust is important. This is not an issue that has been researched frequently in the literature; this paper helps to provide understanding of the key factors which develop these three elements of trust.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 16 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2004

Troy Heffernan

Given the increase in the globalisation of the world's economies, the importance of building successful cross‐cultural business to business partnerships is emerging as a…

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5145

Abstract

Given the increase in the globalisation of the world's economies, the importance of building successful cross‐cultural business to business partnerships is emerging as a critical strategy for organisations to consider. For these forms of relationships trust has been identified as an essential component of success. However, little is known about the development and formation of trust in cross‐cultural business to business relationships. Consequently, triangulating two qualitative techniques, this paper examines the development of trust through the initial three stages of the relationship lifecycle. Findings suggest that trust develops in markedly different forms dependent on the lifecycle stage of the relationships.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 7 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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Article
Publication date: 11 July 2008

Robert J. Angell, Troy W. Heffernan and Phil Megicks

Measuring service quality in higher education is increasingly important for attracting and retaining tuition‐based revenues. Nonetheless, whilst undergraduates have…

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5920

Abstract

Purpose

Measuring service quality in higher education is increasingly important for attracting and retaining tuition‐based revenues. Nonetheless, whilst undergraduates have received substantial academic exposure, postgraduate‐based research has been scant. Consequently, the objectives of this paper are threefold: first, to identify the service factors used by postgraduates in their quality evaluations. Second, to analyse the appropriateness of importance‐performance analysis (IPA) in the measurement of service quality and, final, to provide a working example of IPA's application in a UK‐based university.

Design/methodology/approach

Convergent interviews were used to elicit attributes of service that were deemed important by taught postgraduate students. These findings were then tested using an online survey. Exploratory factor analysis was used to group the service attributes into latent “service factors”. Each service factor was then tested for service quality using Martilla and James's IPA technique.

Findings

About 20 service attributes were educed from the qualitative stage. From these, four service factors emerged; being, academic, leisure, industry links and cost. Using IPA in a UK university, the findings suggest that the “academic” and “industry links” aspects of service quality are the most critical to postgraduates. The paper's conclusions suggest that IPA is an appropriate tool for measuring service quality in postgraduate education.

Practical implications

Through the application of the IPA framework presented in this research, practitioners can successfully identify areas of service priority and thus allocate appropriate resources to encourage continuous service improvement.

Originality/value

This research provides a valuable insight into the service quality needs of the UK postgraduate segment and also a potential conceptual framework for policy makers to use when evaluating their service delivery.

Details

Quality Assurance in Education, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0968-4883

Keywords

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