Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 214

World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology

[Industrial and Systems Engineering]

Online ISSN : 1307-6892

214 Intergenerational Influences on Automobile Brand Preferences in Pakistan

Authors: Amena Sibghatullah

Abstract:

The purpose of this study was to examine the existence of Inter-generational Influence (IGI) between two successive generations in the selection of automobile brands. IGI was examined between mother-daughter dyads and father-son dyads. A total sample of 320 respondents (80 fathers and their 80 sons, 80 mothers, and their 80 daughters) from the upper-middle class was selected. Three important findings from this study are; (a) the difference in proportion of agreements Brand-In-Use versus Brand-In-Mind appeared to be statistically significant in the Automobile product category. Thus agreements Brand-In-Use situation between parent and child has more agreements than Brand-In-Mind situation; (b) the difference in proportions between women and men (women means mother-daughter dyad agreement, and men means father-son dyad agreement) is statistically significant in automobile brand preferences. This means that mother-daughter dyad brand preferences, both brand-in-mind and brand-in-use are more significant than that of a father-son dyad, and (c) dominance of the top three brands has been exhibited in automobiles both Brand-In-Use and Brand-In-Mind. These three brands hold more than 57% of auto brand preferences. This means that the three brands occupy distinct and strong positions in the minds of consumers. These results reflect that there is significant evidence of IGI presence between parent and adult child. Marketers of auto brands need to understand this sort of influence on their target consumers.

Keywords: autombile brands, branding, intergenerational influence, preferences

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213 The Impact of Gender Inequality on Corruption:Evidence from Politics and Labor Market

Authors: Mahmoud Salari

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Corruption and gender inequality are the main topics of interest for both economists and policymakers. This study develops various static and dynamic estimation models to examine the impact of gender inequality in politics and the labor market on corruption using data of 170 countries from 1998 to 2014. This study uses two most reliable corruption indexes, including Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) and Corruption Control (CC), to evaluate corruption levels across countries. The results indicate that gender inequality in politics has a strong impact on corruption level, and those countries that have larger/smaller gender inequality in their parliaments are faced with higher/lower corruption, respectively. Meanwhile, there is no enough evidence that supports the relationship between gender inequality in the labor market and corruption, and the results indicate that gender inequality in the labor market is not directly linked to the corruption level.

Keywords: corruption, female labor force participation, politics, gender inequality

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212 Scaling up Potato Economic Opportunities: Evaluation of Youths Participation in Potato Value Chain in Nigeria

Authors: Chigozirim N. Onwusiribe, Jude A. Mbanasor

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The potato value chain when harnessed can engage numerous youths and aid in the fight against poverty, malnutrition and unemployment. This study seeks to evaluate the level of youth participation in the potato value chain in Nigeria. Specifically, this study will examine the extent of youth participation in potato value chain, analyze the cost, benefits and sustainability of youth participation in the potato value chain, identify the factors that can propel or hinder youth participation in the potato value chain and make recommendations that will result in the increase in youth employment in the potato value chain. This study was conducted in the North Central and South East geopolitical zones of Nigeria. A multi stage sampling procedure was used to select 540 youths from the study areas. Focused group discussions and survey approach was used to elicit the required data. The data were analyzed using statistical and econometric tools. The study revealed that the potato value chain is very profitable.

Keywords: value, chain, potato, youth, enterprise

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211 Value Chain Analysis of Melon “Egusi” (Citrullus lanatus Thunb. Mansf) among Rural Farm Enterprises in South East, Nigeria

Authors: Chigozirim Onwusiribe, Jude Mbanasor

Abstract:

Egusi Melon (Citrullus Lanatus Thunb. Mansf ) is a very important oil seed that serves a major ingredient in the diet of most of the households in Nigeria. Egusi Melon is very nutritious and very important in meeting the food security needs of Nigerians. Egusi Melon is cultivated in most farm enterprise in South East Nigeria but the profitability of its value chain needs to be investigated. This study analyzed the profitability of the Egusi Melon value chain. Specifically this study developed a value chain map for Egusi Melon, analysed the profitability of each stage of the Egusi Melon Value chain and analysed the determinants of the profitability of the Egusi Melon at each stage of the value chain. Multi stage sampling technique was used to select 125 farm enterprises with similar capacity and characteristics. Questionnaire and interview were used to elicit the required data while descriptive statistics, Food and Agriculture Organization Value Chain Analysis Tool, profitability ratios and multiple regression analysis were used for the data analysis. One of the findings showed that the stages of the Egusi Melon value chain are very profitable. Based on the findings, we recommend the provision of grants by government and donor agencies to the farm enterprises through their cooperative societies, this will provide the necessary funds for the local fabrication of value addition and processing equipment to suit their unique value addition needs not met by the imported equipment.

Keywords: value, chain, melon, farm, enterprises

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210 An Exploratory Study of Changing Organisational Practices of Third-Sector Organisations in Mandated Corporate Social Responsibility in India

Authors: Avadh Bihari

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Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has become a global parameter to define corporates' ethical and responsible behaviour. It was a voluntary practice in India till 2013, driven by various guidelines, which has become a mandate since 2014 under the Companies Act, 2013. This has compelled the corporates to redesign their CSR strategies by bringing in structures, planning, accountability, and transparency in their processes with a mandate to 'comply or explain'. Based on the author's M.Phil. dissertation, this paper presents the changes in organisational practices and institutional mechanisms of third-sector organisations (TSOs) with the theoretical frameworks of institutionalism and co-optation. It became an interesting case as India is the only country to have a law on CSR, which is not only mandating the reporting but the spending too. The space of CSR in India is changing rapidly and affecting multiple institutions, in the context of the changing roles of the state, market, and TSOs. Several factors such as stringent regulation on foreign funding, mandatory CSR pushing corporates to look out for NGOs, and dependency of Indian NGOs on CSR funds have come to the fore almost simultaneously, which made it an important area of study. Further, the paper aims at addressing the gap in the literature on the effects of mandated CSR on the functioning of TSOs through the empirical and theoretical findings of this study. The author had adopted an interpretivist position in this study to explore changes in organisational practices from the participants' experiences. Data were collected through in-depth interviews with five corporate officials, eleven officials from six TSOs, and two academicians, located at Mumbai and Delhi, India. The findings of this study show the legislation has institutionalised CSR, and TSOs get co-opted in the process of implementing mandated CSR. Seventy percent of the corporates implement their CSR projects through TSOs in India; this has affected the organisational practices of TSOs to a large extent. They are compelled to recruit expert workforce, create new departments for monitoring & evaluation, communications, and adopt management practices of project implementation from corporates. These are attempts to institutionalise the TSOs so that they can produce calculated results as demanded by corporates. In this process, TSOs get co-opted in a struggle to secure funds and lose their autonomy. The normative, coercive, and mimetic isomorphisms of institutionalism come into play as corporates are mandated to take up CSR, thereby influencing the organisational practices of TSOs. These results suggest that corporates and TSOs require an understanding of each other's work culture to develop mutual respect and work towards the goal of sustainable development of the communities. Further, TSOs need to retain their autonomy and understanding of ground realities without which they become an extension of the corporate-funder. For a successful CSR project, engagement beyond funding is required from corporate, through their involvement and not interference. CSR-led community development can be structured by management practices to an extent, but cannot overshadow the knowledge and experience of TSOs.

Keywords: corporate social responsibility, institutionalism, organisational practices, third-sector organisations

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209 Heuristic Methods for the Capacitated Location-Allocation Problem with Stochastic Demand

Authors: Salinee Thumronglaohapun

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The proper number and appropriate locations of service centers can save costs, raise revenue, and gain more satisfaction from customers. Establishing service centers is high-cost and difficult to relocate. In long-term planning periods, several factors may affect the service. One of the most critical factors is the uncertain demand for customers. The opened service centers need to capable of serving customers and making a profit, although the demand in each period is changed. In this work, the capacitated location-allocation problem with stochastic demand is considered. A mathematical model is formulated to determine suitable locations of service centers and their allocation to maximize total profit for multiple planning periods. Two heuristic methods, a local search and a genetic algorithm are used to solve this problem. For the local search, five different chances to choose each type of moves are applied. For the genetic algorithm, three different replacement strategies are considered. The results of applying each method to solve numerical examples are compared. Both methods reach the same best-found solution in most examples, but the genetic algorithm provides better solutions in some cases.

Keywords: location-allocation problem, stochastic demand, local search, genetic algorithm

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208 The Impact of Corporate Social Responsibility Information Disclosure on the Accuracy of Analysts' Earnings Forecasts

Authors: Xin-Hua Zhao

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In recent years, the growth rate of social responsibility reports disclosed by Chinese corporations has grown rapidly. The economic effects of the growing corporate social responsibility reports have become a hot topic. The article takes the chemical listed engineering corporations that disclose social responsibility reports in China as a sample, and based on the information asymmetry theory, examines the economic effect generated by corporate social responsibility disclosure with the method of ordinary least squares. The research is conducted from the perspective of analysts’ earnings forecasts and studies the impact of corporate social responsibility information disclosure on improving the accuracy of analysts' earnings forecasts. The results show that there is a statistically significant negative correlation between corporate social responsibility disclosure index and analysts’ earnings forecast error. The conclusions confirm that enterprises can reduce the asymmetry of social and environmental information by disclosing social responsibility reports, and thus improve the accuracy of analysts’ earnings forecasts. It can promote the effective allocation of resources in the market.

Keywords: analysts' earnings forecasts, corporate social responsibility disclosure, economic effect, information asymmetry

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207 Behavioral Intentions and Cognitive-Affective Effects of Exposure to YouTube Advertisements among College Students

Authors: Abd El-Basit Ahmed Hashem Mahmoud, Othman Fekry Abdelbaki

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This study attempts to investigate the exposure to YouTube ads among Egyptian college students, their attitudes towards these ads, behavioral intentions to watch them, and the effects of this exposure and to examine the relationships among these variables as well. The current study is theoretically guided by the theory of reasoned action (TRA) and cognitive-affective behavioral model (CAB) through a questionnaire survey administered to a convenience sample of 390 college students who watch YouTube videos from Cairo University, Egypt from February to May 2019. The results showed that 98.7% of respondents exposed to YouTube ads, and both of their attitudes towards YouTube ads exposure and their intentions to this exposure were moderately positive. The findings also indicated that respondents' gender had a significant impact on their intention to expose these ads. One-way ANOVA indicated that their attitudes towards exposure to YouTube ads influenced their behavioral intentions to watch these ads, and it also demonstrated that their behavioral intentions to watch these ads had an impact on the exposure to such ads. Pearson correlation revealed that there was a significant positive relationship between respondents' attitudes towards YouTube ads exposure and the cognitive, affective, and behavioral effects of this exposure.

Keywords: attitudes, behavioral intentions, theory of reasoned action, YouTube ads

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206 Mitigating the Unwillingness of e-Forums Members to Engage in Information Exchange

Authors: Dora Triki, Irena Vida, Claude Obadia

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Social networks such as e-Forums or dating sites often face the reluctance of key members to participate. Relying on the conation theory, this study investigates this phenomenon and proposes solutions to mitigate the issue. We show that highly experienced e-Forum members refuse to share business information in a peer to peer information exchange forums. However, forums managers can mitigate this behavior by developing a sentiment of belongingness to the network. Furthermore, by selecting only elite forum participants with ample experience, they can reduce the reluctance of key information providers to engage in information exchange. Our hypotheses are tested with PLS structural equations modeling using survey data from members of a French e-Forum dedicated to the exchange of business information about exporting.

Keywords: conation, e-Forum, information exchange, members participation

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205 One-Way Electric Vehicle Carsharing in an Urban Area with Vehicle-To-Grid Option

Authors: Cem Isik Dogru, Salih Tekin, Kursad Derinkuyu

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Electric vehicle (EV) carsharing is an alternative method to tackle urban transportation problems. This method can be applied by several options. One of the options is the one-way carsharing, which allow an EV to be taken at a designated location and leaving it on another specified location customer desires. Although it may increase users’ satisfaction, the issues, namely, demand dissatisfaction, relocation of EVs and charging schedules, must be dealt with. Also, excessive electricity has to be stored in batteries of EVs. To cope with aforementioned issues, two-step mixed integer programming (MIP) model is proposed. In first step, the integer programming model is used to determine amount of electricity to be sold to the grid in terms of time periods for extra profit. Determined amounts are provided from the batteries of EVs. Also, this step works in day-ahead electricity markets with forecast of periodical electricity prices. In second step, other MIP model optimizes daily operations of one-way carsharing: charging-discharging schedules, relocation of EVs to serve more demand and renting to maximize the profit of EV fleet owner. Due to complexity of the models, heuristic methods are introduced to attain a feasible solution and different price information scenarios are compared.

Keywords: electric vehicles, forecasting, mixed integer programming, one-way carsharing

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204 Evaluation of the Execution Effect of the Minimum Grain Purchase Price in Rural Areas

Authors: Zhaojun Wang, Zongdi Sun, Yongjie Chen, Manman Chen, Linghui Wang

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This paper uses the analytic hierarchy process to study the execution effect of the minimum purchase price of grain in different regions and various grain crops. Firstly, for different regions, five indicators including grain yield, grain sown area, gross agricultural production, grain consumption price index, and disposable income of rural residents were selected to construct an evaluation index system. We collect data of six provinces including Hebei Province, Heilongjiang Province and Shandong Province from 2006 to 2017. Then, the judgment matrix is constructed, and the hierarchical single ordering and consistency test are carried out to determine the scoring standard for the minimum purchase price of grain. The ranking of the execution effect from high to low is: Heilongjiang Province, Shandong Province, Hebei Province, Guizhou Province, Shaanxi Province, and Guangdong Province. Secondly, taking Shandong Province as an example, we collect the relevant data of sown area and yield of cereals, beans, potatoes and other crops from 2006 to 2017. The weight of area and yield index is determined by expert scoring method. And the average sown area and yield of cereals, beans and potatoes in 2006-2017 were calculated, respectively. On this basis, according to the sum of products of weights and mean values, the execution effects of different grain crops are determined. It turns out that among the cereals, the minimum purchase price had the best execution effect on paddy, followed by wheat and finally maize. Moreover, among major categories of crops, cereals perform best, followed by beans and finally potatoes. Lastly, countermeasures are proposed for different regions, various categories of crops, and different crops of the same category.

Keywords: analytic hierarchy process, grain yield, grain sown area, minimum grain purchase price

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203 Analysis of Urban Rail Transit Station's Accessibility Reliability: A Case Study of Hangzhou Metro, China

Authors: Jin-Qu Chen, Jie Liu, Yong Yin, Zi-Qi Ju, Yu-Yao Wu

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Increase in travel fare and station’s failure will have huge impact on passengers’ travel. The Urban Rail Transit (URT) station’s accessibility reliability under increasing travel fare and station failure are analyzed in this paper. Firstly, the passenger’s travel path is resumed based on stochastic user equilibrium and Automatic Fare Collection (AFC) data. Secondly, calculating station’s importance by combining LeaderRank algorithm and Ratio of Station Affected Passenger Volume (RSAPV), and then the station’s accessibility evaluation indicators are proposed based on the analysis of passenger’s travel characteristic. Thirdly, station’s accessibility under different scenarios are measured and rate of accessibility change is proposed as station’s accessibility reliability indicator. Finally, the accessibility of Hangzhou metro stations is analyzed by the formulated models. The result shows that Jinjiang station and Liangzhu station are the most important and convenient station in the Hangzhou metro, respectively. Station failure and increase in travel fare and station failure have huge impact on station’s accessibility, except for increase in travel fare. Stations in Hangzhou metro Line 1 have relatively worse accessibility reliability and Fengqi Road station’s accessibility reliability is weakest. For Hangzhou metro operational department, constructing new metro line around Line 1 and protecting Line 1’s station preferentially can effective improve the accessibility reliability of Hangzhou metro.

Keywords: automatic fare collection data, AFC, station’s accessibility reliability, stochastic user equilibrium, urban rail transit, URT

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202 Measures of Reliability and Transportation Quality on an Urban Rail Transit Network in Case of Links’ Capacities Loss

Authors: Jie Liu, Jinqu Cheng, Qiyuan Peng, Yong Yin

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Urban rail transit (URT) plays a significant role in dealing with traffic congestion and environmental problems in cities. However, equipment failure and obstruction of links often lead to URT links’ capacities loss in daily operation. It affects the reliability and transport service quality of URT network seriously. In order to measure the influence of links’ capacities loss on reliability and transport service quality of URT network, passengers are divided into three categories in case of links’ capacities loss. Passengers in category 1 are less affected by the loss of links’ capacities. Their travel is reliable since their travel quality is not significantly reduced. Passengers in category 2 are affected by the loss of links’ capacities heavily. Their travel is not reliable since their travel quality is reduced seriously. However, passengers in category 2 still can travel on URT. Passengers in category 3 can not travel on URT because their travel paths’ passenger flow exceeds capacities. Their travel is not reliable. Thus, the proportion of passengers in category 1 whose travel is reliable is defined as reliability indicator of URT network. The transport service quality of URT network is related to passengers’ travel time, passengers’ transfer times and whether seats are available to passengers. The generalized travel cost is a comprehensive reflection of travel time, transfer times and travel comfort. Therefore, passengers’ average generalized travel cost is used as transport service quality indicator of URT network. The impact of links’ capacities loss on transport service quality of URT network is measured with passengers’ relative average generalized travel cost with and without links’ capacities loss. The proportion of the passengers affected by links and betweenness of links are used to determine the important links in URT network. The stochastic user equilibrium distribution model based on the improved logit model is used to determine passengers’ categories and calculate passengers’ generalized travel cost in case of links’ capacities loss, which is solved with method of successive weighted averages algorithm. The reliability and transport service quality indicators of URT network are calculated with the solution result. Taking Wuhan Metro as a case, the reliability and transport service quality of Wuhan metro network is measured with indicators and method proposed in this paper. The result shows that using the proportion of the passengers affected by links can identify important links effectively which have great influence on reliability and transport service quality of URT network; The important links are mostly connected to transfer stations and the passenger flow of important links is high; With the increase of number of failure links and the proportion of capacity loss, the reliability of the network keeps decreasing, the proportion of passengers in category 3 keeps increasing and the proportion of passengers in category 2 increases at first and then decreases; When the number of failure links and the proportion of capacity loss increased to a certain level, the decline of transport service quality is weakened.

Keywords: urban rail transit network, reliability, transport service quality, links’ capacities loss, important links

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201 Vocational Education: A Synergy for Skills Acquisition and Global Learning in Colleges of Education in Ogun State, Nigeria

Authors: Raimi, Kehinde Olawuyi, Omoare Ayodeji Motunrayo

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In the last two decades, there has been rising youth unemployment, restiveness, and social vices in Nigeria. The relevance of Vocational Education for skills acquisition, global learning, and national development to address these problems cannot be underestimated. Thus, the need to economically empower Nigerian youths to be able to develop the nation and meet up in the ever-changing global learning and economy led to the assessment of Vocational Education as Synergy for the Skills Acquisition and Global Learning in Ogun State, Nigeria. One hundred and twenty out of 1,500 students were randomly selected for this study. Data were obtained through a questionnaire and were analyzed with descriptive statistics and Chi-square. The results of the study showed that 59.2% of the respondents were between 20 – 24 years of age, 60.8% were male, and 65.8% had a keen interest in Vocational Education. Also, 90% of the respondents acquired skills in extension/advisory, 78.3% acquired skills in poultry production, and 69.1% acquired skills in fisheries/aquaculture. The major constraints to Vocational Education are inadequate resource personnel (χ² = 10.25, p = 0.02), inadequate training facilities (x̅ = 2.46) and unstable power supply (x̅ = 2.38). Results of Chi-square showed significance association between constraints and Skills Acquisition (χ² = 12.54, p = 0.00) at p < 0.05 level of significance. It was established that Vocational Education significantly contributed to students’ skills acquisition and global learning. This study, therefore, recommends that inadequate personnel should be looked into by the school authority in order not to over-stretch the available staff of the institution while the provision of alternative stable power supply (solar power) is also essential for effective teaching and learning process.

Keywords: vocational education, skills acquisition, national development, global learning

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200 Perception of Corporate Social Responsibility and Enhancing Compassion at Work Through Sense of Meaningfulness

Authors: Nikeshala Weerasekara, Roshan Ajward

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Contemporary business environment, given the circumstance of stringent scrutiny toward corporate behavior, organizations are under pressure to develop and implement solid overarching Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategies. In that milieu, in order to differentiate themselves from competitors and maintain stakeholder confidence banks spend millions of dollars on CSR programmes. However, knowledge on how non-western bank employees perceive such activities is inconclusive. At the same time recently only researchers have shifted their focus on positive effects of compassion at work or the organizational conditions under which it arises. Nevertheless, mediation mechanisms between CSR and compassion at work have not been adequately examined leaving a vacuum to be explored. Despite finding a purpose in work that is greater than extrinsic outcomes of the work is important to employees, meaningful work has not been examined adequately. Thus, in addition to examining the direct relationship between CSR and compassion at work, this study examined the mediating capability of meaningful work between these variables. Specifically, the researcher explored how CSR enables employees to sense work as meaningful which in turn would enhance their level of compassion at work. Hypotheses were developed to examine the direct relationship between CSR and compassion at work and the mediating effect of meaningful work on the relationship between CSR and compassion at work. Both Social Identity Theory (SIT) and Social Exchange Theory (SET) were used to theoretically support the relationships. The sample comprised of 450 respondents covering different levels of the bank. A convenience sampling strategy was used to secure responses from 13 local licensed commercial banks in Sri Lanka. Data was collected using a structured questionnaire which was developed based on a comprehensive review of literature and refined using both expert opinions and a pilot survey. Structural equation modeling using Smart Partial Least Square (PLS) was utilized for data analysis. Findings indicate a positive and significant (p < .05) relationship between CSR and compassion at work. Also, it was found that meaningful work partially mediates the relationship between CSR and compassion at work. As per the findings it is concluded that bank employees’ perception of CSR engagement not only directly influence compassion at work but also impact such through meaningful work as well. This implies that employees consider working for a socially responsible bank since it creates greater meaningfulness of work to retain with the organization, which in turn trigger higher level of compassion at work. By utilizing both SIT and SET in explaining relationships between CSR and compassion at work it amounts to theoretical significance of the study. Enhance existing literature on CSR and compassion at work. Also, adds insights on mediating capability of psychologically related variables such as meaningful work. This study is expected to have significant policy implications in terms of increasing compassion at work where managers must understand the importance of including CSR activities into their strategy in order to thrive. Finally, it provides evidence of suitability of using Smart PLS to test models with mediating relationships involving non normal data.

Keywords: compassion at work, corporate social responsibility, employee commitment, meaningful work, positive affect

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199 Global Supply Chain Tuning: Role of National Culture

Authors: Aleksandr S. Demin, Anastasiia V. Ivanova

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Purpose: The current economy tends to increase the influence of digital technologies and diminish the human role in management. However, it is impossible to deny that a person still leads a business with its own set of values and priorities. The article presented aims to incorporate the peculiarities of the national culture and the characteristics of the supply chain using the quantitative values of the national culture obtained by the scholars of comparative management (Hofstede, House, and others). Design/Methodology/Approach: The conducted research is based on the secondary data in the field of cross-country comparison achieved by Prof. Hofstede and received in the GLOBE project. The data mentioned are used to design different aspects of the supply chain both on the cross-functional and inter-organizational levels. The connection between a range of principles in general (roles assignment, customer service prioritization, coordination of supply chain partners) and in comparative management (acknowledgment of the national peculiarities of the country in which the company operates) is shown over economic and mathematical models, mainly linear programming models. Findings: The combination of the team management wheel concept, the business processes of the global supply chain, and the national culture characteristics let a transnational corporation to form a supply chain crew balanced in costs, functions, and personality. To elaborate on an effective customer service policy and logistics strategy in goods and services distribution in the country under review, two approaches are offered. The first approach relies exceptionally on the customer’s interest in the place of operation, while the second one takes into account the position of the transnational corporation and its previous experience in order to accord both organizational and national cultures. The effect of integration practice on the achievement of a specific supply chain goal in a specific location is advised to assess via types of correlation (positive, negative, non) and the value of national culture indices. Research Limitations: The models developed are intended to be used by transnational companies and business forms located in several nationally different areas. Some of the inputs to illustrate the application of the methods offered are simulated. That is why the numerical measurements should be used with caution. Practical Implications: The research can be of great interest for the supply chain managers who are responsible for the engineering of global supply chains in a transnational corporation and the further activities in doing business on the international area. As well, the methods, tools, and approaches suggested can be used by top managers searching for new ways of competitiveness and can be suitable for all staff members who are keen on the national culture traits topic. Originality/Value: The elaborated methods of decision-making with regard to the national environment suggest the mathematical and economic base to find a comprehensive solution.

Keywords: logistics integration, logistics services, multinational corporation, national culture, team management, service policy, supply chain management

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198 The Contribution of Woman Towards Social Development: A Case of Saudi Arabia

Authors: Haga Elimam

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The study has contributed to determine the degree to which the women of Saudi Arabia play an imperative role in the developmental processes. This research provided a twofold objective to motivate Saudi females to take part in the development of society. The quantitative design has been implied for assessing outcomes through descriptive statistics techniques. The data has been analyzed by regression analysis. The outcomes of the study showed that when women were provided with health and educational necessities and adequate opportunities, they were able to contribute effectively in achieving desired developmental objectives for the nation. Saudi women constitute approximately half of the society; thus, they are equally provided health and justice rights. It has been concluded through the results of the study that the nature of Saudi society, customs, traditions, and beliefs affect the role played by women of Saudi Arabia. This study examines the tangible changes that comprised all aspects of life due to international exposure.

Keywords: social development, social service, sustainable development, civil society and educational sector

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197 A Review of Data Visualization Best Practices: Lessons for Open Government Data Portals

Authors: Bahareh Ansari

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Background: The Open Government Data (OGD) movement in the last decade has encouraged many government organizations around the world to make their data publicly available to advance democratic processes. But current open data platforms have not yet reached to their full potential in supporting all interested parties. To make the data useful and understandable for everyone, scholars suggested that opening the data should be supplemented by visualization. However, different visualizations of the same information can dramatically change an individual’s cognitive and emotional experience in working with the data. This study reviews the data visualization literature to create a list of the methods empirically tested to enhance users’ performance and experience in working with a visualization tool. This list can be used in evaluating the OGD visualization practices and informing the future open data initiatives. Methods: Previous reviews of visualization literature categorized the visualization outcomes into four categories including recall/memorability, insight/comprehension, engagement, and enjoyment. To identify the papers, a search for these outcomes was conducted in the abstract of the publications of top-tier visualization venues including IEEE Transactions for Visualization and Computer Graphics, Computer Graphics, and proceedings of the CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. The search results are complemented with a search in the references of the identified articles, and a search for 'open data visualization,' and 'visualization evaluation' keywords in the IEEE explore and ACM digital libraries. Articles are included if they provide empirical evidence through conducting controlled user experiments, or provide a review of these empirical studies. The qualitative synthesis of the studies focuses on identification and classifying the methods, and the conditions under which they are examined to positively affect the visualization outcomes. Findings: The keyword search yields 760 studies, of which 30 are included after the title/abstract review. The classification of the included articles shows five distinct methods: interactive design, aesthetic (artistic) style, storytelling, decorative elements that do not provide extra information including text, image, and embellishment on the graphs), and animation. Studies on decorative elements show consistency on the positive effects of these elements on user engagement and recall but are less consistent in their examination of the user performance. This inconsistency could be attributable to the particular data type or specific design method used in each study. The interactive design studies are consistent in their findings of the positive effect on the outcomes. Storytelling studies show some inconsistencies regarding the design effect on user engagement, enjoyment, recall, and performance, which could be indicative of the specific conditions required for the use of this method. Last two methods, aesthetics and animation, have been less frequent in the included articles, and provide consistent positive results on some of the outcomes. Implications for e-government: Review of the visualization best-practice methods show that each of these methods is beneficial under specific conditions. By using these methods in a potentially beneficial condition, OGD practices can promote a wide range of individuals to involve and work with the government data and ultimately engage in government policy-making procedures.

Keywords: best practices, data visualization, literature review, open government data

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196 ‘Free’ Services on Net: Move from Barter to Money

Authors: Rakesh Shrivastava

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Consumers routinely use services on the web by accessing these from laptops and mobile. Many services are provided free of cost and are actually paid by the user’s time, attention, and data. Consumers depend on regulators and authorities to protect their interests. The barter trade of service can move to a system of money, say ‘Cyberdollar’. Whenever a service is used, the consumer of service shall pay Cyberdollars for services used by her. Service-provider shall pay Cyberdollars to the consumer for time spent by her, the attention given by the user, and for the data shared by the consumer. Cyberdollars based marketplace for web services shall be more efficient and vibrant than present barter. Consumers shall be able to influence the price of various services based on utility and quality, and service providers shall be able to optimize their earnings by dynamic pricing of services offered. Consumers shall have a choice of gracefully opting out of services, and service providers may seek compensation for loss of business. Cyberdollar may emerge as the most powerful currency used all over the globe for transacting on the world wide web.

Keywords: access to world wide web, free web services, prices of web-based services, virtual currency

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195 The History of the Birth of Tunisian Higher Accounting Education

Authors: Rim Khemiri, Mariam Dammak

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The aim of this study is to trace the historical evolution of Tunisian higher accounting education and to understand and highlight the circumstances of its birth and its development. A documentary study (archival documents, official documents, public speeches, etc.), as well as semi-directive interviews with key actors, were carried out as part of this research work. These interviews aim to fill a lack of information on this subject and to confirm events addressed by other sources, but for which it lacks the elements necessary for a good understanding. After having put forward the specificities of the Tunisian context, we will, first of all, proceed to a review of the literature related to our theme in various contexts of the world. Then, we will present the evolution of the accounting curriculum by highlighting the circumstances of its birth and those of the successive reforms led by the Tunisian government. The study of higher accounting education in Tunisia and its evolution has several interests. The first lies in understanding the circumstances of its birth and its evolution in relation to the historical, socio-economic, and political context of the country. The second is to propose a reading grid that allows an understanding of the reforms that led to the university accountancy accounting course as we know it today. And, the third, aims to complete the literature on the processes of evolution of higher education accounting, by treating a different context, in order to provide additional knowledge necessary to compare experiences in this area around the world.

Keywords: accounting history, higher accounting education, socio-economic and political context, Tunisian context

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194 The Relationship between Knowledge Management Processes and Strategic Thinking at the Organization Level

Authors: Bahman Ghaderi, Hedayat Hosseini, Parviz Kafche

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The role of knowledge management processes in achieving the strategic goals of organizations is crucial. To this end, understanding the relationship between knowledge management processes and different aspects of strategic thinking (followed by long-term organizational planning) should be considered. This research examines the relationship between each of the five knowledge management processes (creation, storage, transfer, audit, and deployment) with each dimension of strategic thinking (vision, creativity, thinking, communication and analysis) in one of the major sectors of the food industry in Iran. In this research, knowledge management and its dimensions (knowledge acquisition, knowledge storage, knowledge transfer, knowledge auditing, and finally knowledge utilization) as independent variables and strategic thinking and its dimensions (creativity, systematic thinking, vision, strategic analysis, and strategic communication) are considered as the dependent variable. The statistical population of this study consisted of 245 managers and employees of Minoo Food Industrial Group in Tehran. In this study, a simple random sampling method was used, and data were collected by a questionnaire designed by the research team. Data were analyzed using SPSS 21 software. LISERL software is also used for calculating and drawing models and graphs. Among the factors investigated in the present study, knowledge storage with 0.78 had the most effect, and knowledge transfer with 0.62 had the least effect on knowledge management and thus on strategic thinking.

Keywords: knowledge management, strategic thinking, knowledge management processes, food industry

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193 The History of Chartered Certified Accountants: The Case of Tunisia

Authors: Mariam Dammak, Yosra Makni Fourati, Rania Mnejja

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This paper aims to highlight the conditions and the context of the birth and the implementation of the Chartered Certified Accountants in Tunisian universities. For this purpose, we present an historical overview of the establishment of institutions that started the courses of Chartered accounting, including the Institute of Higher Commercial Studies (IHEC) of Carthage, the Higher Institute of Management (ISG) of Tunis, the Faculty of Economics and Management (FSEG) of Sfax and later the Higher Institute of Accounting and Administration of Enterprises (ISCAE) of Tunis. Then, it would be relevant to examine the changes, carried out by the Tunisian government, of the regulations in force relating to this academic path, from its birth during the 1970s until nowadays. We conducted a documentary study (archival documents, official documents, etc.) accompanied by semi-structured interviews with key actors (accountants, academics, officials of the Ministry of Higher Education) who marked the history of the studies of Tunisian charted accounting. Addressing this research question in Tunisia may contribute to the literature in three ways. First, previous researches dealing with the history of charted accounting-education are scared. Second, this paper allows us to understand the circumstances and context of the birth and teaching of accounting in Tunisia. Eventually, it helps to position the accounting curriculum in relation to international requirements. In fact, the training of accountants is closely related to the practice of the profession, regulated by the Order of Chartered Accountants in Tunisia (OECT). This Order is a member of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), since its creation in the 80s, has obligations to align with international requirements, particularly those relating to higher education, set up in 2005 and updated in 2015 (International Standard Education: IES).

Keywords: accounting history, chartered certified accountants, higher accounting education, Tunisian context

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192 Optimization of the Measure of Compromise as a Version of Sorites Paradox

Authors: Aleksandar Hatzivelkos

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The term ”compromise” is mostly used casually within the social choice theory. It is usually used as a mere result of the social choice function, and this omits its deeper meaning and ramifications. This paper is based on a mathematical model for the description of a compromise as a version of the Sorites paradox. It introduces a formal definition of d-measure of divergence from a compromise and models a notion of compromise that is often used only colloquially. Such a model for vagueness phenomenon, which lies at the core of the notion of compromise enables the introduction of new mathematical structures. In order to maximize compromise, different methods can be used. In this paper, we explore properties of a social welfare function TdM (from Total d-Measure), which is defined as a function which minimizes the total sum of d-measures of divergence over all possible linear orderings. We prove that TdM satisfy strict Pareto principle and behaves well asymptotically. Furthermore, we show that for certain domain restrictions, TdM satisfy positive responsiveness and IIIA (intense independence of irrelevant alternatives) thus being equivalent to Borda count on such domain restriction. This result gives new opportunities in social choice, especially when there is an emphasis on compromise in the decision-making process.

Keywords: borda count, compromise, measure of divergence, minimization

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191 A Construction Scheduling Model by Applying Pedestrian and Vehicle Simulation

Authors: Akhmad F. K. Khitam, Yi Tai, Hsin-Yun Lee

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In the modern research of construction management, the goals of scheduling are not only to finish the project within the limited duration, but also to improve the impact of people and environment. Especially for the impact to the pedestrian and vehicles, the considerable social cost should be estimated in the total performance of a construction project. However, the site environment has many differences between projects. These interactions affect the requirement and goal of scheduling. It is difficult for schedule planners to quantify these interactions. Therefore, this study use 3D dynamic simulation technology to plan the schedule of the construction engineering projects that affect the current space users (i.e., the pedestrians and vehicles). The proposed model can help the project manager find out the optimal schedule to minimize the inconvenience brought to the space users. Besides, a roadwork project and a building renovation project were analyzed for the practical situation of engineering and operations. Then this study integrates the proper optimization algorithms and computer technology to establish a decision support model. The proposed model can generate a near-optimal schedule solution for project planners.

Keywords: scheduling, simulation, optimization, pedestrian and vehicle behavior

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190 Impact of Audit Committee on Real Earnings Management: Cases of Netherlands

Authors: Sana Masmoudi Mardessi, Yosra Makni Fourati

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Regulators highlight the importance of the Audit Committee (AC) as a key internal corporate governance mechanism. One of the most important roles of this committee is to oversee the financial reporting process. The purpose of this paper is to examine the link between the characteristics of an audit committee and the financial reporting quality by investigating whether the characteristics of audit committees are associated with improved financial reporting quality, especially the Real Earnings Management. In the current study, a panel data from 80 nonfinancial companies listed on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange during the period between 2010 and 2017 were used. To measure audit committee characteristics, four proxies have been used, specifically, audit committee independence, financial expertise, gender diversity and AC meetings. For this research, a linear regression model was used to identify the influence of a set of board characteristics of the audit committee on real earnings management after controlling for firm audit committee size, leverage, size, loss, growth and board size. This research provides empirical evidence of the association between audit committee independence, financial expertise, gender diversity and meetings and Real Earnings Management (REM) as a proxy of financial reporting quality. The study finds that independence and AC Gender diversity are strongly related to financial reporting quality. In fact, these two characteristics constrain REM. The results also suggest that AC- financial expertise reduces to some extent, the likelihood of engaging in REM. These conclusions provide support then to the audit committee requirement under the Dutch Corporate Governance Code rules regarding gender diversity and AC meetings.

Keywords: audit committee, financial expertise, independence, real earnings management

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189 The Effect of Book-Tax Conformity on Audit Quality: Evidence from Canada

Authors: Yosra Makni Fourati, Sana Masmoudi Mardessi

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This paper investigates the effect of Book-tax conformity on audit quality regarding the proxies of audit fees, auditors’ industry specialization and audit report lag. Using a sample of Canadian firms listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange spanning the years 2006- 2016, we applied an Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) regression to test hypotheses of this research. The authors find that higher Book-tax conformity leads to lower audit fees. They also provide evidence that there is a negative association between Book-tax conformity and auditors’ industry specialization, whereas there is a positive association between Book-tax conformity and audit report lag. Overall, the findings are prominent to better understanding the effect of Book-tax conformity on audit quality and are relevant for academic researchers, practitioners, and regulators. As the paper investigates the relationship of Book-tax conformity and audit quality using a sample of Canadian firms, it brings original insights regarding the importance of audit fees and Book-tax conformity. In addition, it considers the role of auditor’s industry specialization in the relation between audit quality and Book-tax conformity by considering a sample listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange. This paper contributes to the existing literature by highlighting the Canadian setting, to our best knowledge. In addition, our results are prominent to the auditing literature as they introduce a different determinant of auditors’ industry specialization and audit report lag.

Keywords: audit fees, auditors' industry specialization, audit report lag, book-tax conformity

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188 Quality Management Practices and Innovation: The Moderating Effect of ISO 9001 Certification

Authors: Sonda Daoud

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In this article, we examine the impact of quality management practices related to the application of ISO 9000 standards on innovation (products, processes, and organization). We test our model in 100 Tunisian companies. The sample includes ISO 9001 certified and non-certified companies. The t-test and ANOVA results support that ISO 9001 certified companies have higher levels of innovation and appropriation of the management practices than in non-ISO companies. The application of the structural equation model allowed us to accept the first three hypotheses of our research work supporting a positive relationship between quality management practices and innovation. These hypotheses found seven quality management practices (customer focus, leadership, process approach, human resource focus, information and analysis, improvement, suppliers relationship) that have significantly positive impact on product innovation, process innovation, and organizational innovation. The fourth hypothesis concerning the moderating role of ISO 9001 certification is partially verified.

Keywords: quality practices, ISO 9001 certification, innovation, Tunisian companies

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187 When Messages Cause Distraction from Advertising: An Eye-Tracking Study

Authors: Nilamadhab Mohanty

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It is essential to use message formats that make communication understandable and correct. It is because; the information format can influence consumer decision on the purchase of a product. This study combines information from qualitative inquiry, media trend analysis, eye tracking experiment, and questionnaire data to examine the impact of specific message format and consumer perceived risk on attention to the information and risk retention. We investigated the influence of message framing (goal framing, attribute framing, and mix framing) on consumer memory, study time, and decisional uncertainty while deciding on the purchase of drugs. Furthermore, we explored the impact of consumer perceived risk (associated with the use of the drug, i.e., RISK-AB and perceived risk associated with the non-use of the drug, i.e., RISK-EB) on message format preference. The study used eye-tracking methods to understand the differences in message processing. Findings of the study suggest that the message format influences information processing, and participants' risk perception impacts message format preference. Eye tracking can be used to understand the format differences and design effective advertisements.

Keywords: message framing, consumer perceived risk, advertising, eye tracking

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186 A Good Start for Digital Transformation of the Companies: A Literature and Experience-Based Predefined Roadmap

Authors: Batuhan Kocaoglu

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Nowadays digital transformation is a hot topic both in service and production business. For the companies who want to stay alive in the following years, they should change how they do their business. Industry leaders started to improve their ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) like backbone technologies to digital advances such as analytics, mobility, sensor-embedded smart devices, AI (Artificial Intelligence) and more. Selecting the appropriate technology for the related business problem also is a hot topic. Besides this, to operate in the modern environment and fulfill rapidly changing customer expectations, a digital transformation of the business is required and change the way the business runs, affect how they do their business. Even the digital transformation term is trendy the literature is limited and covers just the philosophy instead of a solid implementation plan. Current studies urge firms to start their digital transformation, but few tell us how to do. The huge investments scare companies with blur definitions and concepts. The aim of this paper to solidify the steps of the digital transformation and offer a roadmap for the companies and academicians. The proposed roadmap is developed based upon insights from the literature review, semi-structured interviews, and expert views to explore and identify crucial steps. We introduced our roadmap in the form of 8 main steps: Awareness; Planning; Operations; Implementation; Go-live; Optimization; Autonomation; Business Transformation; including a total of 11 sub-steps with examples. This study also emphasizes four dimensions of the digital transformation mainly: Readiness assessment; Building organizational infrastructure; Building technical infrastructure; Maturity assessment. Finally, roadmap corresponds the steps with three main terms used in digital transformation literacy as Digitization; Digitalization; and Digital Transformation. The resulted model shows that 'business process' and 'organizational issues' should be resolved before technology decisions and 'digitization'. Companies can start their journey with the solid steps, using the proposed roadmap to increase the success of their project implementation. Our roadmap is also adaptable for relevant Industry 4.0 and enterprise application projects. This roadmap will be useful for companies to persuade their top management for investments. Our results can be used as a baseline for further researches related to readiness assessment and maturity assessment studies.

Keywords: digital transformation, digital business, ERP, roadmap

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185 Developing Social Responsibility Values in Nascent Entrepreneurs through Role-Play: An Explorative Study of University Students in the United Kingdom

Authors: David W. Taylor, Fernando Lourenço, Carolyn Branston, Paul Tucker

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There are an increasing number of students at Universities in the United Kingdom engaging in entrepreneurship role-play to explore business start-up as a career alternative to employment. These role-play activities have been shown to have a positive influence on students’ entrepreneurial intentions. Universities also play a role in developing graduates’ awareness of social responsibility. However, social responsibility is often missing from these entrepreneurship role-plays. It is important that these role-play activities include the development of values that support social responsibility, in-line with those running hybrid, humane and sustainable enterprises, and not simply focus on profit. The Young Enterprise (YE) Start-Up programme is an example of a role-play activity that is gaining in popularity amongst United Kingdom Universities seeking ways to give students insight into a business start-up. A Post-92 University in the North-West of England has adapted the traditional YE Directorship roles (e.g., Marketing Director, Sales Director) by including a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Director in all of the team-based YE Start-Up businesses. The aim for introducing this Directorship was to observe if such a role would help create a more socially responsible value-system within each company and in turn shape business decisions. This paper investigates role-play as a tool to help enterprise educators develop socially responsible attitudes and values in nascent entrepreneurs. A mixed qualitative methodology approach has been used, which includes interviews, role-play, and reflection, to help students develop positive value characteristics through the exploration of unethical and selfish behaviors. The initial findings indicate that role-play helped CSR Directors learn and gain insights into the importance of corporate social responsibility, influenced the values and actions of their YE Start-Ups, and increased the likelihood that if the participants were to launch a business post-graduation, that the intent would be for the business to be socially responsible. These findings help inform educators on how to develop socially responsible nascent entrepreneurs within a traditionally profit orientated business model.

Keywords: student entrepreneurship, young enterprise, social responsibility, role-play, values

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