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Article

Muhammad Sajid Qureshi, Ali Daud, Malik Khizar Hayat and Muhammad Tanvir Afzal

Academic rankings are facing various issues, including the use of data sources that are not publicly verifiable, subjective parameters, a narrow focus on research…

Abstract

Purpose

Academic rankings are facing various issues, including the use of data sources that are not publicly verifiable, subjective parameters, a narrow focus on research productivity and regional biases and so forth. This research work is intended to enhance creditability of the ranking process by using the objective indicators based on publicly verifiable data sources.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed ranking methodology – OpenRank – drives the objective indicators from two well-known publicly verifiable data repositories: the ArnetMiner and DBpedia.

Findings

The resultant academic ranking reflects common tendencies of the international academic rankings published by the Shanghai Ranking Consultancy (SRC), Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) and Times Higher Education (THE). Evaluation of the proposed methodology advocates its effectiveness and quick reproducibility with low cost of data collection.

Research limitations/implications

Implementation of the OpenRank methodology faced the issue of availability of the quality data. In future, accuracy of the academic rankings can be improved further by employing more relevant public data sources like the Microsoft Academic Graph, millions of graduate's profiles available in the LinkedIn repositories and the bibliographic data maintained by Association for Computing Machinery and Scopus and so forth.

Practical implications

The suggested use of open data sources would offer new dimensions to evaluate academic performance of the higher education institutions (HEIs) and having comprehensive understanding of the catalyst factors in the higher education.

Social implications

The research work highlighted the need of a purposely built, publicly verifiable electronic data source for performance evaluation of the global HEIs. Availability of such a global database would help in better academic planning, monitoring and analysis. Definitely, more transparent, reliable and less controversial academic rankings can be generated by employing the aspired data source.

Originality/value

We suggested a satisfying solution for improvement of the HEIs' ranking process by making the following contributions: (1) enhancing creditability of the ranking results by merely employing the objective performance indicators extracted from the publicly verifiable data sources, (2) developing an academic ranking methodology based on the objective indicators using two well-known data repositories, the DBpedia and ArnetMiner and (3) demonstrating effectiveness of the proposed ranking methodology on the real data sources.

Details

Library Hi Tech, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0737-8831

Keywords

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Article

Majid Nejatian, Mohammad Hossein Zarei, Ali Rajabzadeh, Adel Azar and Ameneh Khadivar

For organizations competing in volatile environments, strategic agility is the key for sustaining in the market. It is essential for such organizations to identify the…

Abstract

Purpose

For organizations competing in volatile environments, strategic agility is the key for sustaining in the market. It is essential for such organizations to identify the main agility indicators that contribute to their strategic core. The purpose of this paper is to propose and test a systematic methodology that identifies key agility indicators through prioritization and establishing the intra- and inter-relationships among them.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology consists of four phases. Phase I forms a pool of agility key performance indicators (KPIs). Phase II categorizes and ranks the KPIs based on their importance and the gap that exists between their current and desired level. Using interpretive structural modeling, phase III establishes the intra-relationships among the KPIs as well as agility attributes, agility enablers and improvement paths, collectively referred to as agility indicators. Finally, phase IV analyzes the inter-relationships among agility indicators using three consecutive houses of quality.

Findings

To demonstrate the capability of the proposed methodology, it was applied to a dairy food company operating in a competitive environment. The application could address the shortcomings of previous agility methodologies and helped the company to assign resources to the right agility indicators with the highest influence on strategic agility.

Research limitations/implications

The methodology was applied to a single organization only. The application does not include long-term post-implementation observations and measurement of strategic agility.

Practical implications

Practitioners can benefit from the methodology to identify the right agility indicators of their organization and assign organizational resources for the improvement of such indicators. The methodology ensures selecting indicators that contribute to organization’s strategic agility, although ostensibly seem unrelated.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the literature of strategic and organizational agility by proposing a systematic methodology that considers both intra- and inter-relationships among agility indicators. The methodology also makes a decent contribution in addressing organizational ambidexterity by analyzing mutually exclusive indicators pertaining to current and future opportunities for the organization.

Details

Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. 32 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

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Article

Mihir Patel and Darshak Arunbhai Desai

The purpose of this paper is to capture the status of implementation of Six Sigma in various manufacturing industries and also examine the success of the Six Sigma by…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to capture the status of implementation of Six Sigma in various manufacturing industries and also examine the success of the Six Sigma by using different performance indicators.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology of critical review involves the selection and classification of 112 research articles on the implementation of Six Sigma in different manufacturing industries. The selected articles are categorized by the following: articles distribution based on the year of publication, publication database, various journals, contribution of authors, continent, scale of industry, implemented approaches, focused industry, tools and techniques used in phases of Six Sigma methodology, and performance indicators used in Six Sigma implementation. Then after, future scopes of research opportunities are derived based on significant findings.

Findings

The literature revealed that: Very few work was undertaken on the implementation of Six Sigma in various manufacturing industries like ceramic, paper, gems and jewelry, cement, furniture, stone, fertilizer, forging, paper and surface treatment industries. Most of the researchers have considered very few performance indicators to identify the improvement after Six Sigma implementation. But, there is no clue regarding overall improvement in different perspectives after the implementation of Six Sigma. The financial indicators, personnel indicators, process indicators and customer indicators are useful to measure the overall improvement after the implementation of Six Sigma in the manufacturing sector.

Research limitations/implications

The study was carried out on the implementation of Six Sigma methodology in various manufacturing industries, and various performance indicators were identified while implementing the Six Sigma methodology. Case studies pertaining to service industries were not covered here.

Originality/value

Very little research has been carried out to measure the overall success of implementing Six Sigma methodology in manufacturing industries. This paper will provide value to students, researchers and practitioners of Six Sigma by providing insight into the implementation of Six Sigma in manufacturing industries.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 35 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

Keywords

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Article

F. Franceschini, M. Galetto, D. Maisano and L. Mastrogiacomo

The purpose of this paper is to attempt to provide a reference framework for the major properties of performance indicators, using the formalism of the Representation Theory.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to attempt to provide a reference framework for the major properties of performance indicators, using the formalism of the Representation Theory.

Design/methodology/approach

Performance indicators shown are commonly used in many different areas of operations management in order to analyse process evolution. However, in practical applications many questions arise: “How many indicators should be used for representing a given process?”, “Is there an optimal set?”, “How to check whether the indicators used suitably represent the system investigated?”, etc. In the literature these questions have been addressed in relation to a number of different application fields. This has led to a maze of classifications and properties, which may create confusion in both the academic and the practitioner communities. In a previous work, the paper carried out an analysis of the existing literature, examining and comparing different approaches. This present work identifies and analyses the major properties which effective indicators should exhibit, and suggests an operational methodology to choose the “best” set of indicators.

Findings

The findings in this paper produce a detailed analysis of the properties of indicators and establish a schematic methodology facilitating the selection and verification of indicators. To make the process clearer, properties are explained by the use of practical examples.

Research limitations/implications

Indicators are utilized in many different contexts for a variety of purposes (for example, logistics, business management, manufacturing, sports competitions, etc.). The paper provides a general analysis of the most important properties of indicators, without entering into specific application contexts.

Practical implications

The paper proposes an operational methodology to support the selection and testing of the best indicators for a given process. This methodology may also be used for integrating other existing approaches.

Originality/value

Properties of indicators are examined from a mathematical/symbolic point of view, using the formalism of the Representation Theory.

Details

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 57 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0401

Keywords

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Article

Fadi Salem

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of international benchmarking studies as drivers for e‐government development.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of international benchmarking studies as drivers for e‐government development.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper shows that after reviewing 44 published e‐government benchmarking reports (2000‐2006) and evaluating their validity and acceptance in academic and practitioners' literature, the paper systematically compares and contrasts ten established international e‐government benchmarking methodologies. The comparative analysis is conducted utilizing a proposed conceptual framework (CMBP), which specifically assesses the context, methodology, type of benchmarking and social paradigmatic tendency of each of the reports studied.

Findings

The paper finds that regardless of the methodology adopted‐international e‐government benchmarking does have an imperative role in driving e‐government development, only when the exercise is accompanied with a long‐term iterative adaptation and reform mechanism.

Originality/value

The framework proposed in this paper provides public administrators with a valuable conceptual lens for understanding the value of each benchmarking study to better assess its applicability in driving development of their e‐government initiative. The paper also contributes to the limited body of academic literature investigating e‐government benchmarking and proposes a methodical framework for understanding the role of international benchmarking reports in e‐government development.

Details

Measuring Business Excellence, vol. 11 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1368-3047

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Article

Ralf T. Münnich and Jan Georg Seger

The purpose of this study is to show the importance of adequately considering quality measures within the use of composite indicators (CIs). Policy support often relies on…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to show the importance of adequately considering quality measures within the use of composite indicators (CIs). Policy support often relies on high quality indicators. Often, the underlying data of relevant indicators are coming mainly from sample surveys. Obviously, the reliability of the indicators then heavily relies on the sampling design and other quality aspects.

Design/methodology/approach

Starting from the well-known work on sensitivity analysis of indicators, this study integrates the sampling process as an additional source of variability. The methodology is evaluated in a close-to-reality simulation environment using relevant and important surveys with different sampling designs. As an example, this study uses data related to the statistics of income and living conditions (SILC). The study is based on a design-based simulation framework.

Findings

In general, the normalisation method is dominating as source of the total variance of CI. In our study, we show that the sampling process also becomes rather relevant and generally dominates the influence of different weighting methods. We show that in some scenarios approximately 40 per cent of the variability in the sensitivity analysis comes from the sampling process. The quality of ranking derived from CIs then suffers considerably from the sampling design. When using data sources from different quality, e.g. in regional comparisons, one may expect some cases with biased CI values which may become useless for applications.

Research limitations/implications

The impact of sampling heavily depends on the data gathering process. In case of sample data, the sampling designs play an important role. However, the design effect still depends on the variables taken into account and has to be considered carefully.

Practical implications

The findings show the importance of considering the quality framework the European Code of Practice also for CIs. This additional information shall foster to understand possible over- or misinterpretations of CIs, especially when deriving rankings from the indicators. Specialised statistical methods shall be integrated in future research, particularly when focusing on regional indicators.

Originality/value

CIs are often used for policy monitoring. In general, the data gathering process is not considered adequately by end-users. This becomes especially important when being interested in regional indicators. The present paper shows possible implications of the sampling designs on CI outcomes with the focus on comparative studies.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

Keywords

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Article

Didem Dizdaroglu, Tan Yigitcanlar and Les Dawes

As a consequence of rapid urbanisation and globalisation, cities have become the engines of population and economic growth. Hence, natural resources in and around the…

Abstract

Purpose

As a consequence of rapid urbanisation and globalisation, cities have become the engines of population and economic growth. Hence, natural resources in and around the cities have been exposed to externalities of urban development processes. This paper introduces a new sustainability assessment approach that is tested in a pilot study. The paper aims to assist policy‐makers and planners investigating the impacts of development on environmental systems, and produce effective policies for sustainable urban development.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper introduces an indicator‐based indexing model entitled “Indexing Model for the Assessment of Sustainable Urban Ecosystems” (ASSURE). The ASSURE indexing model produces a set of micro‐level environmental sustainability indices that is aimed to be used in the evaluation and monitoring of the interaction between human activities and urban ecosystems. The model is an innovative approach designed to assess the resilience of ecosystems towards impacts of current development plans and the results serve as a guide for policy‐makers to take actions towards achieving sustainability.

Findings

The indexing model has been tested in a pilot case study within the Gold Coast City, Queensland, Australia. This paper presents the methodology of the model and outlines the preliminary findings of the pilot study. The paper concludes with a discussion on the findings and recommendations put forward for future development and implementation of the model.

Originality/value

Presently, there is a few sustainability indices developed to measure the sustainability at local, regional, national and international levels. However, due to challenges in data collection difficulties and availability of local data, there is no effective assessment model at the micro‐level that the assessment of urban ecosystem sustainability accurately. The model introduced in this paper fills this gap by focusing on parcel‐scale and benchmarking the environmental performance in micro‐level.

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Article

Rosalia Castellano and Antonella Rocca

The construction and use of composite indicators has recently increased considerably because such indicators permit the comparison and ranking of countries with respect to…

Abstract

Purpose

The construction and use of composite indicators has recently increased considerably because such indicators permit the comparison and ranking of countries with respect to complex phenomena of global importance. Together with the diffusion of these composite indicators, a major debate has emerged over their real capacity to produce objective and reliable results. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, an analysis of the results of the Gender Gap Labour Market Index (GGLMI) – an ad hoc composite indicator constructed by the authors to analyse the gender gap in European labour markets – is proposed, in order to identify the most appropriate choices in the construction of composite indicators, to obtain reliable results. This is a sensible approach, especially when various aspects (some of them controversial) have to be synthesised.

Findings

In addition to highlighting the greater robustness of non-compensatory methods, this analysis confirms the variability of countries’ rankings on graded positional lists, and suggests the need to use a procedure based on a set of alternative methods conveniently combined in each step of the composite indicator construction.

Research limitations/implications

The research identifies the weak steps in composite indicator construction and the data characteristics which increase the volatility. Only an approach based on various alternative paths can control for it.

Practical implications

It offers some reflections on the extent to which gender disparities in labour market still persist in European countries and the different ways in which it manifests.

Social implications

The analysis of characteristics and policies activated in countries at the top of the ranking can suggest initiatives to promote gender equality.

Originality/value

Besides of testing the robustness of results, an effort in order to identify the best way to obtain a synthetic and reliable single rank is made. Further, the results produced by the GGLMI for the year 2011 are presented and discussed.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 42 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

Keywords

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Article

Nagendra Kumar Maurya and Karuna Shanker Kanaujiya

The present research has been conceptualized to make an inter-district analysis in terms of IHDI of Uttar Pradesh. It aims to provide district-wise estimates of HDI and…

Abstract

Purpose

The present research has been conceptualized to make an inter-district analysis in terms of IHDI of Uttar Pradesh. It aims to provide district-wise estimates of HDI and IHDI with the latest available data, which may prove to be a critical policy input to the policy makers that how different districts are performing in terms of education, health and standard of living parameters and help in implementing tailor made policy actions.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper utilizes the Census of India data and unit-level data of National Sample Survey (NSS) for constructing HDI and IHDI. The broad framework for computing IHDI in this study is similar to the approach of UNDP's HDR 2010. To adjust the inequality aspect, the Atkinson inequality aversion parameter has been estimated at indicator level on the basis of NSS unit record data.

Findings

The study reveals that inequality discounted income index is on an average 30 percent lower than unadjusted income index. However, quite high variation exists in case of education and health. The difference ranges from 30 percent to 40 percent in the case of education and from 3 to 36 percent in the health dimension. The surprising fact which study finds that health infrastructure and education infrastructure are poorly correlated with their respective outcomes.

Research limitations/implications

The study offers a policy suggestion that increasing investment on educational and health infrastructure will not have any significant impact on their respective outcomes unless distributional inequalities are reduced. The study also suggests that rising income inequalities are threat to inclusive growth and sustainable development goals agenda. Thus, it recommends policy makers to take pro-active timely policy measures to reduce income inequalities. The educational achievement should be fixed in terms of average years of schooling and expected years of schooling rather than in terms of literacy rate.

Originality/value

The present research is an original work. This is the first study in the case of Uttar Pradesh which attempted to estimate district-wise IHDI following the internationally accepted UNDP (2010) methodology.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

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Article

Güleda Doğan and Umut Al

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the similarity of intra-indicators used in research-focused international university rankings (Academic Ranking of World…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the similarity of intra-indicators used in research-focused international university rankings (Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), NTU, University Ranking by Academic Performance (URAP), Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) and Round University Ranking (RUR)) over years, and show the effect of similar indicators on overall rankings for 2015. The research questions addressed in this study in accordance with these purposes are as follows: At what level are the intra-indicators used in international university rankings similar? Is it possible to group intra-indicators according to their similarities? What is the effect of similar intra-indicators on overall rankings?

Design/methodology/approach

Indicator-based scores of all universities in five research-focused international university rankings for all years they ranked form the data set of this study for the first and second research questions. The authors used a multidimensional scaling (MDS) and cosine similarity measure to analyze similarity of indicators and to answer these two research questions. Indicator-based scores and overall ranking scores for 2015 are used as data and Spearman correlation test is applied to answer the third research question.

Findings

Results of the analyses show that the intra-indicators used in ARWU, NTU and URAP are highly similar and that they can be grouped according to their similarities. The authors also examined the effect of similar indicators on 2015 overall ranking lists for these three rankings. NTU and URAP are affected least from the omitted similar indicators, which means it is possible for these two rankings to create very similar overall ranking lists to the existing overall ranking using fewer indicators.

Research limitations/implications

CWTS, Mapping Scientific Excellence, Nature Index, and SCImago Institutions Rankings (until 2015) are not included in the scope of this paper, since they do not create overall ranking lists. Likewise, Times Higher Education, CWUR and US are not included because of not presenting indicator-based scores. Required data were not accessible for QS for 2010 and 2011. Moreover, although QS ranks more than 700 universities, only first 400 universities in 2012–2015 rankings were able to be analyzed. Although QS’s and RUR’s data were analyzed in this study, it was statistically not possible to reach any conclusion for these two rankings.

Practical implications

The results of this study may be considered mainly by ranking bodies, policy- and decision-makers. The ranking bodies may use the results to review the indicators they use, to decide on which indicators to use in their rankings, and to question if it is necessary to continue overall rankings. Policy- and decision-makers may also benefit from the results of this study by thinking of giving up using overall ranking results as an important input in their decisions and policies.

Originality/value

This study is the first to use a MDS and cosine similarity measure for revealing the similarity of indicators. Ranking data is skewed that require conducting nonparametric statistical analysis; therefore, MDS is used. The study covers all ranking years and all universities in the ranking lists, and is different from the similar studies in the literature that analyze data for shorter time intervals and top-ranked universities in the ranking lists. It can be said that the similarity of intra-indicators for URAP, NTU and RUR is analyzed for the first time in this study, based on the literature review.

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