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This paper describes the development of a scale for measuring top management commitment towards continual quality performance improvement in small and medium‐sized…
This paper describes the development of a scale for measuring top management commitment towards continual quality performance improvement in small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs). A set of self‐assessment questions of the ISO 9004: 2000 Standard was used to assess the adoption status of quality management practices. This paper investigates the inter‐item reliability and the content validity of the Quality Management Principles Scale (QMPS) in an integrated improvement process in SMEs. An empirical study was conducted to acquire senior management views on the use of the QMPS in manufacturing sectors in Trinidad and Tobago. Based on 328 responses from 110 SMEs, statistical software packages were used to analyse the empirical data and determine the reliability and validity of the QMPS. The paper contributes to develop a self‐assessment scale that can be used to measure top management commitment. It is anticipated that the findings would provide practical insights for evaluating the levels of maturity on performance improvement in SMEs.
This paper explores innovative manufacturing processes, which can be used to manufacture the national musical instrument of Trinidad and Tobago, the Musical Steel Drum or…
This paper explores innovative manufacturing processes, which can be used to manufacture the national musical instrument of Trinidad and Tobago, the Musical Steel Drum or Steel Pan. The main manufacturing process used today is the manual hand‐forming technique. In order to achieve more consistent and deeper formed components while maintaining the high quality of the instrument, it is proposed that the Marforming process and the Flow‐forming process, and adaptation of the Spinforming process, be used more frequently in the future to replace the traditional Hand‐forming method. In the traditional Spinforming technique material is pushed from the outer circumference of the metal disc to the center in progressive passes of the former. This results in a thinning of the outer region of the formed component with thickening of the center, however the opposite is required for the musical steel drum and by adapting the process the required strain distributions were achieved. Evaluation took the form of strain analyses of pre‐formed steel drums and visual inspection of the quality of the surface finish. It was found that the Marformed components had the smallest range of strain values while the Spinformed components had the largest range.
The increasing consciousness of sustainable development and reconciling production with ecosystem conservation have fostered the adoption and implementation of…
The increasing consciousness of sustainable development and reconciling production with ecosystem conservation have fostered the adoption and implementation of environmental management systems (EMS). This paper investigates the critical processes and factors that may affect EMS planning. Empirical findings of a recent study in Hong Kong are presented, and a five‐stage EMS planning framework starting from strategy formulation to system implementation and evaluation is proposed. The framework integrates various perspectives of environmental management and strategy formulation. The paper provides organisations with a procedural guide for implementing environmental management practices. Flexible adaptation of the framework can help organisations derive potential benefits from the EMS implementation leading to sustainable competitive advantage. The framework can be modified to cater for varied business nature and operations in industry.
Shipping is perhaps the most internationally recognized of all the world's great industries – and one of the most dangerous. It has always been accepted that the best way…
Shipping is perhaps the most internationally recognized of all the world's great industries – and one of the most dangerous. It has always been accepted that the best way of improving safety at sea is by developing international regulations that are followed by most shipping nations. Since 1993, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has adopted the International Safety Management (ISM) Code as a minimum statutory requirement for ship operating companies to establish, implement and maintain their safety management systems (SMS). This paper compares the ISM Code with the requirements of the ISO 9001:2000 quality management system and the OHSAS 18001:1999 Occupational Health and Safety Standards. It reviews the SMS registration process and discusses the problems and difficulties commonly faced by ship operating companies in the process. A 15‐step implementation strategy for SMS registration is presented. The model provides ship operating companies with a practical reference to manage the SMS registration in compliance with the statutory requirements of the IMO.
This paper presents the main findings of an empirical study that investigates the effects of the “soft” and “hard” criteria of total quality management (TQM) in four ISO…
This paper presents the main findings of an empirical study that investigates the effects of the “soft” and “hard” criteria of total quality management (TQM) in four ISO 9001 certified small and medium‐sized enterprises (SME) in Trinidad and Tobago (T&T).
The study adopted an ethnographic research approach, and used the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) to determine the extent to which these criteria were implemented at the point of ISO 9001 certification. By complementing the literature review, a hierarchy framework of TQM implementation via ISO 9001 was developed. The framework comprised three levels of criteria, sub‐criteria and elements which determine the effectiveness of TQM implementation in SME. Inputs from 16 evaluators including senior executives and representatives from the studied companies were invited. The combined opinions from evaluators were used to identify and prioritize these criteria and components.
The results showed that the “soft” criteria were implemented less than the “hard” criteria in SME. The AHP findings supplement the body of knowledge existing in compliance requirements of ISO 9001 and provide insights on how SME perceive the importance of “soft” versus “hard” criteria in TQM implementation. These findings highlight the need to align SMEs' prevailing quality culture with top management and considers it as one of the focal compliance requirements for future revisions of the ISO 9001:2000 Standard.
Because of the ethnographic nature of the study, it was possible to obtain data from only four SME.
SME in T&T may apply the findings of the empirical research to design, implement and continually improve their quality management system
This paper makes a contribution to the body of knowledge in the field of quality management in a region where such work is limited. It adds value by empirically measures TQM implementation by determining the extent to which its criteria is implemented in ISO 9001 certified SME.
A collection of essays by a social economist seeking to balanceeconomics as a science of means with the values deemed necessary toman′s finding the good life and society…
A collection of essays by a social economist seeking to balance economics as a science of means with the values deemed necessary to man′s finding the good life and society enduring as a civilized instrumentality. Looks for authority to great men of the past and to today′s moral philosopher: man is an ethical animal. The 13 essays are: 1. Evolutionary Economics: The End of It All? which challenges the view that Darwinism destroyed belief in a universe of purpose and design; 2. Schmoller′s Political Economy: Its Psychic, Moral and Legal Foundations, which centres on the belief that time‐honoured ethical values prevail in an economy formed by ties of common sentiment, ideas, customs and laws; 3. Adam Smith by Gustav von Schmoller – Schmoller rejects Smith′s natural law and sees him as simply spreading the message of Calvinism; 4. Pierre‐Joseph Proudhon, Socialist – Karl Marx, Communist: A Comparison; 5. Marxism and the Instauration of Man, which raises the question for Marx: is the flowering of the new man in Communist society the ultimate end to the dialectical movement of history?; 6. Ethical Progress and Economic Growth in Western Civilization; 7. Ethical Principles in American Society: An Appraisal; 8. The Ugent Need for a Consensus on Moral Values, which focuses on the real dangers inherent in there being no consensus on moral values; 9. Human Resources and the Good Society – man is not to be treated as an economic resource; man′s moral and material wellbeing is the goal; 10. The Social Economist on the Modern Dilemma: Ethical Dwarfs and Nuclear Giants, which argues that it is imperative to distinguish good from evil and to act accordingly: existentialism, situation ethics and evolutionary ethics savour of nihilism; 11. Ethical Principles: The Economist′s Quandary, which is the difficulty of balancing the claims of disinterested science and of the urge to better the human condition; 12. The Role of Government in the Advancement of Cultural Values, which discusses censorship and the funding of art against the background of the US Helms Amendment; 13. Man at the Crossroads draws earlier themes together; the author makes the case for rejecting determinism and the “operant conditioning” of the Skinner school in favour of the moral progress of autonomous man through adherence to traditional ethical values.
A recent study has asserted that businesses need to adopt “eco‐advantage”. This paper aims to explore the viability of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) achieving…
A recent study has asserted that businesses need to adopt “eco‐advantage”. This paper aims to explore the viability of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) achieving “eco‐advantage” by exploring their understanding of sustainability issues, how they adopt and innovate in terms of sustainability and the benefits and obstacles they face.
The research approach is exploratory, comprised of 15 SME embedded cases based in the UK. The cases are participants in short interventions in sustainable product and process design as a part of a university knowledge transfer project, representing the overall case. Cases are based on interviews with company participants and collaborating academics, supplemented by documentary and observational evidence.
The results build on the work on “eco‐advantage” found in a recent study, highlighting marketing, rather than compliance issues as a catalyst for change. The newly aware SME enters a development process which involves cumulative capabilities, gaining a nascent inner confidence, which includes espousing wider sustainable values.
The results reveal the scope and challenges for SMEs to adopt more sustainable practices, encompassing innovations and a broad set of capabilities. Further research points to the need to monitor benefits as well as inputs in evaluating sustainability improvements and to consider longitudinal business sustainability issues.
The paper informs the emerging debate on sustainability in SMEs, providing a rich source of data to enhance the provision of business support and knowledge transfer activities, where a more holistic and customised approach is required to realise the real environmental and economic benefits accrued from implementing sustainable improvements.
This paper analyzes the impact of economic downturns on the revenue and expense sides of city financing for the period 2003 to 2009 using a convenience sample of the…
This paper analyzes the impact of economic downturns on the revenue and expense sides of city financing for the period 2003 to 2009 using a convenience sample of the audited end of year financial reports for thirty midsized US cities. The analysis focuses on whether and how quickly and how extensively revenue and spending directions from past years are altered by recessions. A seven year series of Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) data serves to explore whether citiesʼ revenues and spending, especially the traditional property tax and core functions such as public safety and infrastructure withstood the brief 2001 and the persistent 2007 recessions? The findings point to consumption (spending) over stability (revenue minus expense) for the recession of 2007, particularly in 2008 and 2009.