Forthcoming articles

International Journal of Business Environment

International Journal of Business Environment (IJBE)

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International Journal of Business Environment (13 papers in press)

Regular Issues

  • Competitive Efficiency in Catalonia: A non-parametric study of the Competitiveness Index based on Data Envelopment Analysis   Order a copy of this article
    by Rigoberto Zavala 
    Abstract: Building on the Resource Based View (RBV) theory of the firm, this study proposes an analysis of competitive efficiency based on the configuration of different competitive pillars that shape competitiveness. The empirical application uses non-parametric frontier methods (Data Envelopment Analysis, DEA) on a unique sample of 171 Catalan businesses. The results show that different strategies adopted by businesses impact their competitiveness level. It was found that competitive efficiency is conditioned by the heterogeneous configuration of competitive pillars, and that this effect varies across industries. The industry-level findings reveal that competitiveness and competitive efficiency are two inter-connected constructs that not always follow the same trajectory. Additionally, the findings indicate that the optimal configurations of competitive pillars are heterogeneous across industries, which suggests that competitive strengths and weaknesses also vary across industries.
    Keywords: Competitiveness; index number; data envelopment analysis; Catalonia.

  • The impact of financial bootstrapping techniques on perceived performance: An empirical analysis of Costa Rican SMEs   Order a copy of this article
    by Yuqi Li, Marco Alvarado 
    Abstract: In this study we evaluate how different financial bootstrapping techniquesthat we link to the access to financial resources, the relationship with customers and suppliers, and cooperation with other businessesimpact perceived performance among Costa Rican small businesses. The results of the regression analysis on a sample of 120 Costa Rican SMEs for 2017 show that bootstrapping techniques related to customers and suppliers have a significant positive impact on perceived performance, while bootstrapping practices linked to access to finance are negatively correlated to perceived performance levels. The findings also show that labor market experience and business size are positively correlated to perceived performance. This study offers insights on the relevance of including cash-flow managerial practices (i.e., financial bootstrapping techniques) in the performance evaluation of SMEs in developing settings.
    Keywords: Financial bootstrapping techniques; perceived performance; Costa Rica.

  • The Determinants Of Purchasing Local Food: Price Transparency And Customer Expertise Role   Order a copy of this article
    by Maher Toukabri 
    Abstract: Currently, there is a postmodern society characterized by the emergence of new consumer aspirations, a greater societal challenge of companies and a requirement to adapt marketing practices. Thus, the ethical practices has become a driving force. Then, we deduct that competitiveness is inherent to the societal orientation. Additionally, it is better to maintain and retain a customer than to recruit a new one. Furthermore, a lost customer is expensive than acquiring a new one. In this study we concentrate on the purchasing local food antecedents within the proximity and confidence in traceability system. Likewise, this research test the moderating roles of the consumer's expertise and price transparency in the purchasing process of local food. The results of an empirical study directed among two samples of local food consumers, allowed us to validated the measurements and to check the research hypotheses. Therefore, we deduct that consumer expertise plays a positive moderating role in a local product consumption. Similarly, the relationship between confidence in traceability system and the intention to purchase local food is stronger when the consumer is offered not only a low price but also price transparency concerning the products in question. Hence, this research has improved the theoretical background related to local and healthy food. Moreover, it provides marketers with the real tools to promote local food consumption. Specifically, this work inspects the Arabic culture. Besides, it integrates constructs that may affect the prospects of this market.
    Keywords: Consumer expertise; Confidence in traceability system; Price transparency; Proximity; Local food.

  • Exploring the Role of Organizational Innovation in the Time of COVID-19   Order a copy of this article
    by André Rocha, Fernando Luis Almeida 
    Abstract: COVID-19 has caused profound impacts on the economy and society. In Portugal, many companies needed to temporarily close, and many workers were forced to go into lay-off. However, at the same time, several companies are trying to respond to the challenges posed by this pandemic by introducing organizational innovations that would enable them to respond to the needs of the people and organizations that most require help during this period. In this sense, this study aims to explore the role of organizational innovation in the business sector in Portugal through seven case studies. The findings reveal a very diverse set of initiatives in which the role of internal and external sources of innovation stands out simultaneously. Most of the innovations identified have a procedural focus, while structural innovations have less influence. This study is particularly relevant in the practical dimension by encouraging other countries and companies to replicate these initiatives.
    Keywords: Covid-19; organizational innovation; innovation sources; crowdsourcing; collaborative innovation networks.

  • Green Human Resource Management: A Transformational Vision towards Environmental Sustainability   Order a copy of this article
    by Aaisha Khatoon, Nawab Ali Khan, Shubhangi Bharadwaj, Farhana Parvin 
    Abstract: The exploration of GHRM can assist in the development of organizational strategies aligning environmental sustainability. Anchored in the (AMO) theory, SVF theory, this paper examined the influence of HR aspects namely green employee empowerment (GEE), HR business partner commitment (HRC) and Individual environmental knowledge (IK) on leveraging the GHRM activities and further the influence of GHRM activities on organizational employee commitment towards the environment (OECE) employing cross-sectional data from various manufacturing section in India. The outcomes demonstrate that individual knowledge towards the environment have a positive relation towards accelerating the GHRM practices, whereas the two other HR factor (GEE) and (HRC) doesnt have a positive influence in accelerating the GHRM practices in India. Moreover, GHRM practices have a significant impact on boosting the commitment of employees towards the environment in the organization (OECE). The presented model in this study proposes expedient comprehension into the constructive part of HR factors and the commitment of employees towards the adoption of environmental strategies. As limited existing studies are exploring the linking between HR factors and GHRM practices and employee commitment employing first-hand data from the manufacturing sector in India. The present study is of imperative significance for researchers and practitioners. The scope of the study emphasis developing financial prudence with a inadequate extent of variables that are appropriate and explicit to the Indian context. Imminent studies may include more HR factors concerning accelerating GHRM practices or with more dimension of GHRM practices.
    Keywords: Green Human Resource Management; Green employee empowerment; Environmental Sustainability; HR business Partner Commitment; Organizational Employee Commitment towards Environment.

  • Ambidexterity, a driver to enhance small and medium enterprises innovation autonomy   Order a copy of this article
    by Cristina Iturrioz-Landart, Henar Alcalde-Heras, Cristina Aragón-Amonarriz 
    Abstract: SMEs suffer from structural limitations that constrain their ability to develop innovation capacities and these constraints may affect ambidextrous strategy implementations, particularly during economic recessions. To mitigate these weaknesses, SMEs often rely on inter-firm cooperation relationships to provide resources and external sources of knowledge relevant in both exploration and exploitation. The network and organizational performance effects of ambidexterity strategy have been widely studied, but scarce research has focused on the contribution that ambidexterity linked to inter-firm cooperation strategies have on SMEs innovation capabilities over time. This longitudinal study, based on a panel data set about innovation behavior on 2,150 SMEs located in Spains Basque Country during recession periods (2009-2013), verifies how ambidexterity, together with external collaboration strategy, reinforces SMEs innovation autonomy.
    Keywords: Ambidexterity; Innovation; Collaboration; Capabilities; Autonomy; Innovation autonomy; Small and medium-sized firms; economic recession; Exploitation; Exploration.

  • Key prerequisites for ecosystem-based business Servitization journey in software companies   Order a copy of this article
    by Kirsi Kokkonen, Sari Laitinen, Ville Ojanen 
    Abstract: Many companies across different industries have been encountering a strategic value transition from product- or technology-oriented business towards service-based business. The increasing complexity of value propositions in service-based business requires closer collaboration and openness between companies. As a result, companies interest in ecosystem-based business has been increasing. However, companies moving towards ecosystem-based business encounter challenges as they need to renew their knowledge and business capabilities. This study presents nine main characteristics of business ecosystems to take into account, based on a literature review, and reflects with an empirical case study what kind of prerequisites they pose to three software companies targeting to ecosystem-based service business. The paper offers a framework with which the companies can think over the validity of their current situation in relation to the requirements of service-based business in ecosystems and offers new insights on how to support the adoption of ecosystem-based business activities in companies.
    Keywords: business ecosystem; ecosystem-based business; collaboration; customer value; value co-creation; service; service business; servitization; software industry; business model.

  • Producer Benefit Experience for Competitive Advantage   Order a copy of this article
    by Gustavo Barboza, Nripendra Singh, William Pratt 
    Abstract: Consumers are becoming aware of negative externalities [pollution, poor worker treatment, etc.] in the production process, which put pressure on companies to follow green practices. Corporate social responsibility and development of green technologies are some of the strategies that companies are adopting to reduce the negative impact of such externalities. This study proposes a new concept Producer Benefit Experience (PBE) for competitive advantage. PBE argues that companies that educate their consumers about the externalities and utilize green practices to create value for their consumers rather than focusing on cost reduction strategies will have higher chances of success. This study is based on extant review of the literature to develop the argument and provide evidence of the need to focus on PBE. In other words, companies that incorporate green practices into their strategy can have sustained competitive advantage, increased performance, and profitability. The uniqueness of this paper is that PBE concept is being discussed for the first time.
    Keywords: Corporate Social Responsibility; Producer Benefit Experience; Competitive Advantage; Endogenous Consumers’ Preferences.

  • The role of venture capitalists in an organised innovation ecosystem: evidence from the USA   Order a copy of this article
    by Matteo Rossi, Elvira Martini, Ashutosh Kolte 
    Abstract: In the knowledge-based economy (KBE), knowledge and innovation are key drivers of economic growth. However, they have become increasingly complex. In this context, some scholars underlined the importance of the financial system in KBE. This paper has a dual aim: to understand the specific support of informal investors in the USA and to analyse the different behaviour of informal investors in this innovation ecosystem. The first part is a descriptive analysis of the investment characteristics of these operators. In the second part, we discuss the empirical sense in which possible associations of the US actions are best understood. The main results are: 1) venture capitalists activity in the US are focused in few states; 2) venture capitalists present a positive correlation between number of deals and amount invested; 3) small venture capitalists (thinkers) have a strategic approach to innovative firms more defined in comparison with the big VCs (gamblers).
    Keywords: regional innovation ecosystem; knowledge-based economy; KBE; financial system; venture capitalists; the USA; ordinary least square; OLS.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJBE.2021.10037407
  • Certification Happiness Management: an integral instrument for human resources management in post-COVID-19 era   Order a copy of this article
    by Rafael Ravina-Ripoll, María-José Foncubierta-Rodríguez, José Antonio López-Sánchez 
    Abstract: Technological advance and its influence on organisations, their performance and their responses to the stakeholders has been the subject of continuous research. It entirely affects such organisations human capital, which will require being innovative and proactive. This can be achieved through happy human resources at work. Happiness and more efficient results constitute a well-argued binomial throughout the literature. Efficiency in organisations has been addressed, among other diverse approaches, by establishing specific standards that have ensured the overall quality of their production/performance system. These standards are reflected into different certifications, extended and internationally recognised as quality symbols (ISO, TQM, etc.) However, and although all of them include human resource management, there is still no regulation at that level dedicated to the quality of performances by achieving a happy staff on their tasks. This work aims to reduce this gap, proposing Certification Happiness Management (CHM).
    Keywords: happiness; well-being; job satisfaction; creative; certificate; human resource; organisation; innovation; happiness management; ISO; TQM; COVID-19; stakeholders; productive; corporate social responsibility.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJBE.2021.10037200
  • Case Studies in Business Model Innovation: A Systematic Literature Network Analysis   Order a copy of this article
    by Christoph Buck, David Michael Eder, Jonas Brügmann 
    Abstract: In todays society, the changes made by digitization are noticeable in all areas. Companies in every industry and of every size are increasingly confronted with the potential for change that digitization offers. Changing customer interests, technological innovations, and disappearing market boundaries are disrupting entire industries. Increasingly, scientific research is examining the opportunities, obstacles, and effects of digitization on business models based on case study research. However, this relevant field of research faces numerous challenges due to the interface of the research domains. This paper aims to answer the question of how the landscape of case study research in IS and management research is structured on the intersection of digitization and business model innovation. Therefore, we conduct a citation network analysis of case studies in this field, which we identified through a systematic literature review. We identify both the central theoretical findings on business model innovation and the fundamental works on the case study research method. Our results reveal four relevant literature clusters, which describe central research work and provide a valuable basis for future research. In this way, we enable future research to place its contribution both theoretically in the existing research landscape and to ensure a high methodological quality of the research.
    Keywords: Digitization; Business Model Change; Digital Transformation; Structured Literature Review; Case Study Research; Servitization; Digital Business Strategy.

  • Business strategy at times of crisis: Leveraging core competencies to sustain competitive advantage   Order a copy of this article
    by Shaike Marom, Robert Lussier 
    Abstract: How can business strategy be used to maintain a sustainable competitive advantage during a major crisis using dynamic capabilities? Business strategy and sustainable competitive advantage changes implementing dynamic capabilities are the drivers of company success during a crisis, without such changes a company will lose its competitive advantage and may not survive the crisis. This article methodology is a descriptive applied research analysis empirical investigation of how MNC executives used their core competencies in novel approaches towards fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic combining social relief together with strategic moves aimed at strengthening their core competencies.
    Keywords: business strategy; competitive advantage; core competencies; dynamic capabilities; sustainable competitive advantage; multinational corporations; business environment; external environment; crisis situation; COVID-19.

  • Business model innovation (BMI) in small enterprises from developing countries during COVID-19 outbreak: Exploring drivers and BMI outcomes   Order a copy of this article
    by Gabriel Martinez, Suresh Renukappa, Subashini Suresh 
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to provide understanding of driving forces for Business Model Innovation (BMI) during the pandemic for small businesses in developing countries, comparing them with identified BMI drivers before the outbreak and evaluating their response to the current crisis. A qualitative multiple case study is conducted as it allows the study of BMI within real life and contemporary context. Case study organisations that adopt innovative business models participated from technology, education, and social enterprises. Findings shows that small organisations are influenced by internal and external factors towards BMI during the pandemic. Case organisations showed resilience to the crisis by adjusting accordingly to allow uninterrupted operation during lockdown; developing new products, services and processes that would ensure sustained demand during COVID-19 pandemic. The study explores theoretical implications of the findings. Also, lessons from this research could be useful for practitioners from developed and developing countries. Policymakers from developing countries could benefit from focusing their activities on promoting firms to find novel ways of operating during times of pandemic preventing further economic damage and unemployment.
    Keywords: Business model innovation; COVID-19; driving forces; small enterprises; developing countries.