Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 113

Search results for: accountability and transparency

113 Accountability Issues and Challenges: The Scenario for Malaysian Cooperative Movement

Authors: Maslinawati Mohamad, Intan Waheedah Othman, Arun Mohamed

Abstract:

This paper discusses the issues and challenges concerning the issues of accountability and regulation systems of cooperative movement in Malaysia.

Keywords: Cooperative movement, compliance, transparency, issues.

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112 Transparency of Audit Firms in Croatia

Authors: Marko Čular

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The aim of this paper is to raise general awareness of transparency importance for audit firms and for audit services’ users. This paper analyzes transparency of audit firms that audited financial statements of listed companies, for year 2011 and 2012. We use this two years because in the meantime Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants has been adopted. This paper investigates whether transparency reports of audit firms are in accordance with the Croatian Audit Act and whether there is a difference on transparency in observed years. For this paper quality index of transparency report and financial indicators of audit firms are used to get conclusion about condition of audit firms transparency reporting. Results of our study indicate that audit firms are not fully transparent, looking for both years. Transparency of audit firms in 2012 has improved significantly, compared with transparency in 2011.

Keywords: Transparency report, Index quality of transparency report, Croatian Audit Act, Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants.

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111 Towards Good Accountability: The Role of Accounting in Islamic Religious Organisations

Authors: Hasan Basri Afifuddin, A.K Siti-Nabiha

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Non-profit organizations, especially religious-based institutions, have long played a very important role in society. Nevertheless, scandals such as inefficient management and the use of unlawful fundraising activities have raised questions regarding the governance and accountability of these organizations. As such, the issues have attracted considerable research interest. However, there is still limited research on accountability in religious based organizations, especially in the context of Islamic religious organizations. Hence, the purpose of this paper is to discuss the issues of accounting and accountability in religious organizations, specifically in Islamic religious establishments. The paper starts by looking at the conventional meaning and concept of accountability. This is followed by a discussion of the principles of accountability within the Islamic framework. In so doing, the history of the role of accounting within Muslim society and also the differences between the Islamic and conventional view of accountability are reviewed. Insights gained from previous research on accountability in faith based organizations are also discussed

Keywords: Accountability, accounting, Islam, religiousorganization.

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110 Enhancement of Accountability within the South African Public Sector: Knowledge Gained from the Case of a National Commissioner of the South African Police Service

Authors: Yasmin Nanabhay

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The paper scrutinizes the literature on accountability and non-accountability, and then presents an analysis of a South African case which demonstrated consequences of a lack of accountability. Ethical conduct displayed by members of the public sector is integral to creating a sustainable democratic government, which upholds the constitutional tenets of accountability, transparency and professional ethicality. Furthermore, a true constitutional democracy emphasises and advocates the notion of service leadership that nurtures public participation and engages with citizens in a positive manner. Ethical conduct and accountability in the public sector earns public trust; hence these are key principles in good governance. Yet, in the years since the advent of democracy in South Africa, the government has been plagued by rampant corruption and mal-administration by public officials and politicians in leadership positions. The control measures passed by government in an attempt to ensure ethicality and accountability within the public sector include codes of ethics, rules of conduct and the enactment of legislation. These are intended to shape the mindset of members of the public sector, with the ultimate aim of an efficient, effective, ethical, responsive and accountable public service. The purpose of the paper is to analyse control systems and accountability within the public sector and to present reasons for non-accountability by means of a selected case study. The selected case study is the corruption trial of Jackie Selebi, who served as National Commissioner of the South African Police Service but was dismissed from the post. The reasons for non-accountability in the public sector as well as recommendations based on the findings to enhance accountability will be undertaken. The case study demonstrates the experience and impact of corruption and/or mal-administration, as a result of a lack of accountability, which has contributed to the increasing loss of confidence in political leadership in the country as elsewhere in the world. The literature is applied to the erstwhile National Commissioner of the South African Police Service and President of Interpol, as a case study of non-accountability.

Keywords: Public sector, public accountability, internal control, oversight mechanisms, non-compliance, corruption, mal-administration.

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109 Improving the Decision-Making Process and Transparency of Corporate Governance Using XBRL

Authors: Claudiu Brandas

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Several recent studies have shown that the transparency of financial reporting have a significant influence on investor-s decisions. Thus, regulation authorities and professional organizations (IFAC) have emphasized the role of XBRL (eXtensible Business Reporting Language) and interactive data as a means of promoting transparency and monitoring corporate reporting. In this context, this paper has as objective the analysis of interactive reporting through XBRL and its use as a support in the process of taking decisions in corporate governance, namely the potential of interactive reports in XBRL to increase the transparency and monitoring process of corporate governance.

Keywords: Corporate Governance, decision, financial reporting, transparency, XBRL.

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108 Reputation and Transparency of Cooperative Movement in Malaysia

Authors: Maslinawati Mohamad, Intan Waheedah Othman

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This paper studies the reputation and transparency of cooperative movement in Malaysia.

Keywords: Cooperative movement, reputation, transparency, web presence.

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107 Relationship between Financial Reporting Transparency and Investment Efficiency: Evidence from Iran

Authors: Bita Mashayekhi, Hamid Kalhornia

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One of the most important roles of financial reporting is improving the firms’ investment decisions; however, there is not much supporting evidence for this claim in emerging markets like Iran. In this study, the effect of financial reporting transparency in investment efficiency of Iranian firms has been investigated. In order to do this, 336 listed companies on Tehran Stock Exchange (TSE) has been selected for time period 2012 to 2015 as research sample. For testing our main hypothesis, we classified sample firms into two groups based on their deviation from expected investment: under-investment and over-investment cases. The results indicate that there is positive significant relationship between financial transparency and investment efficiency. In the other words, transparency can mitigate both underinvestment and overinvestment situations.

Keywords: Corporate governance, disclosure, investment decisions, investment efficiency, transparency.

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106 Relationship between Transparency, Liquidity and Valuation

Authors: Zahra Lashgari, Naghmeh Sadat MaghamiTekiyeh

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Recent evidences on liquidity and valuation of securities in the capital markets clearly show the importance of stock market liquidity and valuation of firms. In this paper, relationship between transparency, liquidity, and valuation is studied by using data obtained from 70 companies listed in Tehran Stock Exchange during2003-2012. In this study, discriminatory earnings management, as a sign of lack of transparency and Tobin's Q, was used as the criteria of valuation. The results indicate that there is a significant and reversed relationship between earnings management and liquidity. On the other hand, there is a relationship between liquidity and transparency.The results also indicate a significant relationship between transparency and valuation. Transparency has an indirect effect on firm valuation alone or through the liquidity channel. Although the effect of transparency on the value of a firm was reduced by adding the variable of liquidity, the cumulative effect of transparency and liquidity increased.

Keywords: Firm valuation, Earnings management, Liquidity, Tobin's Q, Transparency.

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105 Does Corporate Governance or Transparency Affect Foreign Direct Investment?

Authors: Haksoon Kim

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The paper investigates the relationship between the foreign direct investment (FDI) and the corporate governance or transparency by investigating the country-level FDI flows, FDI inward performance, corporate governance and transparency variables. From the regression analysis with Newey-West estimator of 28 country panel data from 1990- 2002, we find strong positive relationships between corporate governance or transparency level of hosting countries and FDI inward performance within hosting countries. A strong positive relationship is found between anti-director rights level or number of analysts of hosting countries and FDI inward performance within hosting countries. Also, we find a positive relationship between the number of analysts of hosting countries and FDI inflows. The empirical results are consistent with stock market liberalizations and corporate governance explanations of reasons for FDI.

Keywords: corporate governance, corporate transparency, FDIflows, FDI inward performance

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104 Relationships between Information Transparency, Corporate Governance and D&O Insurance

Authors: Shu-Lin Lin, Ching-Chien Yang

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This study examines the influence of information transparency and corporate governance on purchase directors and officers liability (D&O) insurance decisions. The results show that companies with greater information transparency have significant demand for D&O insurance. Greater transparency in voluntary disclosures is significantly and positively associated with demand for insurance, indicating that increasing the degree of information disclosure reduces information asymmetry for insurers, which stimulates their willingness to provide greater protection. Analysis of insured and uninsured subsamples indicates that uninsured companies have superior corporate governance compared to insured companies. Although insured companies tend to have weaker corporate governance structures, they appoint Big 4 firms or industry experts to compensate for the weakness of their corporate governance. Empirical results indicate that purchasing D&O insurance can strengthen external corporate governance and increase companies’ willingness to voluntarily provide more transparent information.

Keywords: Directors and officers liability (D&O) insurance, information transparency, corporate governance, Big 4.

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103 Government of Ghana’s Budget: An Assessment of Its Compliance with Fundamental Budgeting Principles

Authors: Mohammed Sani Abdulai

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Public sector budgeting, all over the world, is underpinned by some universally accepted principles of sound budget management such as budget unity, universality, annuality, and a balanced budget. These traditional principles, though fundamental, had, in recent years, been augmented by the more modern principles of budgeting within fiscal objective, alignment with medium-term strategic plans as well as the observance of such related concepts as transparency, openness and accessibility. In this paper, we have endeavored to shed light, from literature and practice, on the meaning and purposes of such fundamental budgeting principles. We have also assessed the extent to which the Government of Ghana’s budget complies with the four traditional principles of budget unity, universality, annuality, and a balanced budget and the three out of the ten modern principles of budgetary governance of Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). We did so by using a qualitative method of review and analysis of existing documents and the performance assessment reports on Ghana’s Public Financial Management (PFM) measured using such frameworks as the Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability (PEFA), the Open Budget Survey (OBS) and its Index (OBI), the reports and action plans of Open Government Partnership (OGP) and the Global Initiative for Fiscal Transparency (GIFT). Other performance assessment reports that were relied on included, but not limited to, the Joint Evaluation Report of PFM in Ghana, 2001-2010, and the Joint Evaluation of Budget Support to Ghana, 2005-2015. We have, through this paper, brought to the fore the lessons that could be learned on how those budgetary principles undergird the Government of Ghana’s budget formulation, execution, accounting, control, and oversight. These lessons include, but are not limited to, the need for both scholars and practitioners in the PFM space to be aware of the impact of those principles on public sector budgeting.

Keywords: Annulaity, Balanced Budget, Budget Unity, Budgetary Principles, OECD’s Principles on Budgetary Governance, Open Budget Index, Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability, Universality.

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102 Developing a Research Framework for Investigating the Transparency of ePortfolios

Authors: Elizabeth Downs, Judith Repman, Kenneth Clark

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This paper describes the evolution of strategies to evaluate ePortfolios in an online Master-s of Education (M.Ed.) degree in Instructional Technology. The ePortfolios are required as a culminating activity for students in the program. By using Web 2.0 tools to develop the ePortfolios, students are able to showcase their technical skills, integrate national standards, demonstrate their professional understandings, and reflect on their individual learning. Faculty have created assessment strategies to evaluate student achievement of these skills. To further develop ePortfolios as a tool promoting authentic learning, faculty are moving toward integrating transparency as part of the evaluation process.

Keywords: e-learning evaluation, ePortfolios, transparency, Web 2.0

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101 Formation and Development of a New System of Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan in the Globalization

Authors: Kadyrzhan Smagulov, Beken Makhmutov, Abai Kurmankulov

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The concept of the new government should focus on forming a new relationship between public servants and citizens of the state, formed on the principles of transparency, accountability, protection of citizens' rights. These principles are laid down in the problem of administrative reform in the Republic of Kazakhstan. Also, this wish arises, contributing to the improvement of the system of political management in our country. For the full realization of the goals is necessary to develop a special state program designed to improve the regulatory framework for public service, improving training, retraining and advanced training of civil servants, forming a system of incentives in public service and other activities aimed at achieving the efficiency of the entire system government.

Keywords: Kazakhstan, political management, independence

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100 The Problem of Reconciling the Principle of Confidentiality in Foreign Investment Arbitration with the Public Interest

Authors: Bárbara Magalhães Bravo, Cláudia Figueiras

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The economical globalization through the liberalization of the markets and capitals boosted the economical development of the nations and the needs for sorting out the disputes arising from the foreign investment. The arbitration, for all the inherent advantages, such as swiftness, arbitrators’ specialise skills and impartiality sets a pacifier tool for the interest in account. Safeguarded the public interest, we face the problem of the confidentiality in the arbitration. The urgent development of impelling mechanisms concerning transparency, guaranty and protection of the interest in account, reveals itself urgent. Through a bibliography review, we will dense the state of art, by going through the several solutions concerning, and pointing out the most suitable. Through the jurisprudential analysis we will point out the solution for the conflict confidentiality/public interest. The transparency, inextricable from the public interest, imposes the arbitration process can be open to all citizens. Transparency rules have been considered at the UNCITRAL in attempting to conciliate the necessity of publicity and the public interest, however still insufficient. The arbitration of foreign investment carries consequences to the citizens of the State. Articulating mechanisms between the arbitral procedures secrecy and the public interest should be adopted. The arbitration of foreign investment, being a tertius genius between the international arbitration and the administrative arbitration would claim its own regulation in each and every States where the confidentiality rules and its exceptions could be identified. One should enquiry where the limit of the citizens’ individual rights protection and the public interest should give way to the principle of transparency

Keywords: Arbitration, foreign investment, transparency, confidentiality, international centre for settlement of investment disputes UNCITRAL.

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99 Perspectives of Financial Reporting Harmonization

Authors: Sorana M. Manoiu, Razvan V. Mustata, Jiří Strouhal, Carmen G. Bonaci, Dumitru Matis, Jiřina Bokšová

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In the current context of globalization, accountability has become a key subject of real interest for both, national and international business areas, due to the need for comparability and transparency of the economic situation, so we can speak about the harmonization and convergence of international accounting. The paper presents a qualitative research through content analysis of several reports concerning the roadmap for convergence. First, we develop a conceptual framework for the evolution of standards’ convergence and further we discuss the degree of standards harmonization and convergence between US GAAP and IAS/IFRS as to October 2012. We find that most topics did not follow the expected progress. Furthermore there are still some differences in the long-term project that are in process to be completed and other that were reassessed as a lower priority project.

Keywords: Convergence, harmonization, FASB, IASB, IFRS, US GAAP.

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98 Corporate Governance in Network Marketing Organizations: The Role of Ethics and CSR

Authors: Venugopal Kummamuru

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Corporate Governance (CG) is of utmost importance for running a company ethically. It is essential for the growth and success of the corporation. It is intended to increase the accountability of an organization to the larger context of the business environment. The general principles of CG include and are related to Shareholder recognition, Stakeholder interests, and focus on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Clear Board responsibilities, Ethical behavior, and Business transparency. Network Marketing Organizations (NMOs) focus on marketing through direct-sales using people who are associated with the organization but are not their employees. This paper tries to study the importance of Ethics and CSR in an NMO and suggest a basic guideline for CG in NMO(s). This paper could be used as a basis or starting point for conducting an in-depth research to understand the difference in CG practices between NMO(s) and other organizations and define a standard set of guidelines for CG practice.

Keywords: Corporate governance, corporate responsibility, direct selling, network marketing.

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97 Corporate Governance, Shareholder Monitoring and Cost of Debt in Malaysia

Authors: Zulkufly Ramly

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This paper attempts to investigate the effect of corporate governance and shareholder monitoring mechanisms on cost of debt of Malaysian listed firms. We assess the quality of corporate governance using comprehensive corporate governance index, which consists of 139 items in six broad categories. We classify shareholder monitoring mechanisms into concentrated ownership, family, insider and government ownerships. Using panel sample from 2003 to 2007, regression results show that high corporate governance quality and concentrated ownership lower firm cost of debt. Debt issuers consider board structure and procedures, board compensation practices, accountability and audit, transparency and social and environmental activities as integral components of a good corporate governance framework.

Keywords: Corporate governance index, cost of debt, ownership structure, Malaysia.

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96 E-Government, China Internet Plus, and the One Belt One Road Initiative: The Africa Connection

Authors: Isaac Kofi Mensah, Mi Jianing

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The lack of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) infrastructure in African countries is hampering the successful adoption, development and implementation of e-government in Africa. Electronic government is the use of ICTs to modernize government public administration processes and to provide government services to citizens with a purpose to enhance efficiency, accountability, and transparency in government’s interaction with the citizenry. ICT application in public administration has the potential to modernize and create smarter government and improvement in public service delivery. China’s Internet Plus policy and One Belt One Road strategy present a golden opportunity for countries in Africa to attract the huge financial investment through Chinese IT companies to develop and close Africa’s ICT infrastructure gap. This study recommends the establishment of One Belt One Road ICT Infrastructure Fund for Africa (OBOR ICT Fund for Africa) to enable countries in Africa to source solely for the purpose of ICT infrastructure development in the public sector/government machinery which would in turn promote the adoption and development of e-government in the public sectors of respective countries in Africa.

Keywords: E-government, public service delivery, internet plus, one belt one road initiative, China, Africa.

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95 Analyzing Disclosure Practice of Religious Nonprofit Organizations using Partial Disclosure Index

Authors: Ruhaya Atan, Saunah Zainon, Roland Yeow Theng Nam, Sharifah Aliman

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This study examines the relevance of disclosure practices in improving the accountability and transparency of religious nonprofit organizations (RNPOs). The assessment of disclosure is based on the annual returns of RNPOs for the financial year 2010. In order to quantify the information disclosed in the annual returns, partial disclosure indexes of basic information (BI) disclosure index, financial information (FI) disclosure index and governance information (GI) disclosure index have been built which takes into account the content of information items in the annual returns. The empirical evidence obtained revealed low disclosure practices among RNPOs in the sample. The multiple regression results showed that the organizational attribute of the board size appeared to be the most significant predictor for both partial index on the extent of BI disclosure index, and FI disclosure index. On the other hand, the extent of financial information disclosure is related to the amount of donation received by RNPOs. On GI disclosure index, the existence of an external audit appeared to be significant variable. This study has contributed to the academic literature in providing empirical evidence of the disclosure practices among RNPOs.

Keywords: disclosure, index, partial, NPOs, religious

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94 Poverty: Its Causes and Solutions

Authors: Alex Hou Hong Ng, Abdul Ghani Farinda, Fock Kui Kan, Ai Ling Lim, Teo Ming Ting

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Poverty is a multi-facet phenomenon in today’s globalised world. It is rooted in various causes and there are also multiple ways to do away with it. This paper begins with a review on the definitions and measurement of poverty and followed by discussing the various causes of poverty. This paper specifically identifies corruption, education, political instability, geographical characteristics, ineffective local governance and government policies as the causes of poverty. It then suggests possible solutions or recommendations to eradicate poverty based on the causes discussed earlier. Some of the suggestions include strengthening democratic transparency and government budget transparency, public awareness, creation of a framework for economic growth and transformation, and ways to increase the ability of the poor to raise their income.

Keywords: Economic Policy, Government Policy, Poverty Eradication, Sustainable Development.

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93 Intellectual Capital Disclosure: Profiles of Spanish Public Universities

Authors: Yolanda Ramírez, Ángel Tejada, Agustín Baidez

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In the higher education setting, there is a current trend in society toward greater openness and transparency. The economic, social and political changes that have occurred in recent years in public sector universities (particularly the New Public Management, the Bologna Process and the emergence of the “third mission”) call for a wider disclosure of value created by universities to support fundraising activities, to ensure accountability in the use of public funds and the outcomes of research and teaching, as well as close relationships with industries and territories. The paper has two purposes: 1) to explore the intellectual capital (IC) disclosure in Spanish universities through their websites, and 2) to identify university profiles. This study applies a content analysis to analyze the institutional websites of Spanish public universities and a cluster analysis. The analysis reveals that Spanish universities’ website content usually relates to human capital, while structural and relational capitals are less widely disclosed. Our research identifies three behavioral profiles of Spanish universities with regard to the online disclosure of IC (universities more proactive, universities less proactive and universities adopt a middle position in this regard. The results can serve as encouragement to university managers to enhance online IC disclosure to meet the information needs of university stakeholders.

Keywords: Universities, intellectual capital, disclosure, Internet.

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92 Budget and the Performance of Public Enterprises: A Study of Selected Public Enterprises in Nasarawa State Nigeria (2009-2013)

Authors: Dalhatu, Musa Yusha’u, Shuaibu Sidi Safiyanu, Haliru Musa Hussaini

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This study examined budget and performance of public enterprises in Nasarawa State, Nigeria in a period of 2009-2013. The study utilized secondary sources of data obtained from four selected parastatals’ budget allocation and revenue generation for the period under review. The simple correlation coefficient was used to analyze the extent of the relationship between budget allocation and revenue generation of the parastatals. Findings revealed varying results. There was positive (0.21) and weak correlation between expenditure and revenue of Nasarawa Investment and Property Development Company (NIPDC). However, the study further revealed that there was strong and weak negative relationship in the revenue and expenditure of the following parastatals over the period under review. Viz: Nasarawa State Water Board, -0.27 (weak), Nasarawa State Broadcasting Service, -0.52 (Strong) and Nasarawa State College of Agriculture, -0.36 (weak). The study therefore, recommends that government should increase its investments in NIPDC to enhance efficiency and profitability. It also recommends that government should strengthen its fiscal responsibility, accountability and transparency in public parastatals.

Keywords: Allocation, Budget, Public Enterprises, Parastatals, Performance.

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91 Efficiency in Urban Governance towards Sustainability and Competitiveness of City : A Case Study of Kuala Lumpur

Authors: Hamzah Jusoh, Azmizam Abdul Rashid

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Malaysia has successfully applied economic planning to guide the development of the country from an economy of agriculture and mining to a largely industrialised one. Now, with its sights set on attaining the economic level of a fully developed nation by 2020, the planning system must be made even more efficient and focused. It must ensure that every investment made in the country, contribute towards creating the desirable objective of a strong, modern, internationally competitive, technologically advanced, post-industrial economy. Cities in Malaysia must also be fully aware of the enormous competition it faces in a region with rapidly expanding and modernising economies, all contending for the same pool of potential international investments. Efficiency of urban governance is also fundamental issue in development characterized by sustainability, subsidiarity, equity, transparency and accountability, civic engagement and citizenship, and security. As described above, city competitiveness is harnessed through 'city marketing and city management'. High technology and high skilled industries, together with finance, transportation, tourism, business, information and professional services shopping and other commercial activities, are the principal components of the nation-s economy, which must be developed to a level well beyond where it is now. In this respect, Kuala Lumpur being the premier city must play the leading role.

Keywords: Economic planning, sustainability, efficiency, urban governance and city competitiveness.

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90 Public Procurement Development Stages in Georgia

Authors: Giorgi Gaprindashvili

Abstract:

One of the best examples, in evolution of the public procurement, from post-soviet countries are reforms carried out in Georgia, which brought them close to international standards of procurement. In Georgia, public procurement legislation started functioning short after gaining independence. The reform has passed several stages and came in the form as it is today. It should also be noted, that countries with economy in transition, including Georgia, implemented all the reforms in public procurement based on recommendations and support of World Bank, the United Nations and other international organizations. The aim of first adopted law was regulation of the procurement process of budget-organizations, transparency and creation of competitive environment for private companies to access state funds legally. The priorities were identified quite clearly in the wording of the law, but operation/function of this law could not be reached on its level, because of some objective and subjective reasons. The high level of corruption in all levels of governance can be considered as a main obstacle reason and of course, it is natural, that it had direct impact on the procurement process, as well as on transparency and rational use of state funds. These circumstances were the reasons that reforms in this sphere continued, to improve procurement process, in particular, the first wave of reforms began after several years. Public procurement agency carried out reform with World Bank with main purpose of smartening the procurement legislation and its harmonization with international treaties and agreements. Also with the support of World Bank various activities were carried out to raise awareness of participants involved in procurement system. Further major changes in the legislation were filed bit later, which was also directed towards the improvement and smarten of the procurement process. The third wave of the reform more or less guaranteed the transparency of the procurement process, which later became the basis for the rational spending of state funds. The reform of the procurement system completely changed the procedures. Carried out reform in Georgia resulted in introducing new electronic tendering system, which benefit the transparency of the process, after this became the basis for the further development of a competitive environment, which become a prerequisite for the state rational spending. Increased number of supplier organizations participating in the procurement process resulted in reduction of the estimated cost and the actual cost. Assessment of the reforms in Georgia in the field of public procurement can be concluded, that proper regulation of the sector and relevant policy may proceed to rational and transparent spending of the budget from country’s state institutions. Also, the business sector has the opportunity to work in competitive market conditions and to make a preliminary analysis, which is a prerequisite for future strategy and development.

Keywords: Public Administration, Public Procurement, Reforms, Transparency.

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89 Public Service Ethics in Public Administration: An Empirical Investigation

Authors: Kalsoom Sumra

Abstract:

The increasing concern of public sector reforms brings new challenges to public service ethics in developing countries not only at central level but also at local level. This paper aims to identify perceptions on public service ethics of public officials and examines more generally the understanding of public servants in Pakistan towards public service ethics in local public organizations. The study uses an independently administered structured questionnaire to collect data to know the extent of the recognition of public service ethics in local organizations. A total of 150 completed questionnaires are analyzed received from public servants working at the local level in Pakistan. The analysis explores how traditional, social patterns and cultural ethics can provide us with a rounded picture of the main antecedents, moderators of public service ethics in Pakistan. Moreover, the findings of this study contribute in association of public service ethics which are crucial in ongoing political and administrative culture of Pakistan, the most crucial core for public organizational ethical climate. This study also has numerous implications for local public administration and it highlights the importance of expanding research agenda on public service ethics in developing settings with challenging institutional contexts with imperfect training and operating environments. This study may well be particularly important for practice of public service ethics in developing countries in public administration. To the best of author’s knowledge, this study is the first of its kind to provide an initial step in practical implications to emphasize relevant public service ethics in public administration in developing transparent and accountable organization.

Keywords: Public service ethics, accountability and transparency, public service reforms, public administration, organizational ethical climate.

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88 Influence of UV Treatment on the Electrooptical Properties of Indium Tin Oxide Films Used in Flexible Displays

Authors: Mariya P. Aleksandrova, Ivelina N. Cholakova, Georgy K. Bodurov, Georgy D. Kolev, Georgy H. Dobrikov

Abstract:

Indium-tin oxide films are deposited by low plasma temperature RF sputtering on highly flexible modification of glycol polyethyleneterephtalate substrates. The produced layers are characterized with transparency over 82 % and sheet resistance of 86.9 Ω/square. The film’s conductivity was further improved by additional UV illumination from light source (365 nm), having power of 250 W. The influence of the UV exposure dose on the structural and electro-optical properties of ITO was investigated. It was established that the optimum time of illumination is 10 minutes and further UV treatment leads to polymer substrates degradation. Structural and bonds type analysis show that at longer treatment carbon atoms release and diffuse into ITO films, which worsen their electrical behavior. For the optimum UV dose the minimum sheet resistance was measured to be 19.2 Ω/square, and the maximum transparency remained almost unchanged – above 82 %.

Keywords: Flexible displays, indium tin oxide, RF sputtering, UV treatment

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87 Challenges and Opportunities of E-Procurement in the Construction Industry

Authors: Mansur Hamma-adama, Abdul-Basit Sa’eed Ahmad

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Construction Industry is evolving amid the fourth industrial revolution. Transportation, commerce, manufacturing and many other industries ripened the current technological advancement and are striving to utilise every development in the IT sector. The procurement of construction works is known to be very conventional and backward in the adoption of digitalisation. The construction industry's procurement and supply chain are blamed for the most inflated cost of construction projects, mainly attributed to a lack of transparency and trust between the industry stakeholders. This research explores the challenges of e-procurement adoption in the industry and identifies the potential opportunities for its usage. This investigation's data are acquired through interviews, and the data are analysed using qualitative content analysis. This study reveals compounding challenges (i.e., corruption and lack of commitment) that lead to the failure of such efforts in Nigeria and the potential prospects (i.e., transparency and efficiency). This study is essential in developing a more effective and transparent process of procurement so that the Nigerian construction industry is not be left behind in the fast-digitalising markets.

Keywords: Challenges, construction industry, corruption, e-procurement, Nigeria, opportunities.

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86 Genetic Content-Based MP3 Audio Watermarking in MDCT Domain

Authors: N. Moghadam, H. Sadeghi

Abstract:

In this paper a novel scheme for watermarking digital audio during its compression to MPEG-1 Layer III format is proposed. For this purpose we slightly modify some of the selected MDCT coefficients, which are used during MPEG audio compression procedure. Due to the possibility of modifying different MDCT coefficients, there will be different choices for embedding the watermark into audio data, considering robustness and transparency factors. Our proposed method uses a genetic algorithm to select the best coefficients to embed the watermark. This genetic selection is done according to the parameters that are extracted from the perceptual content of the audio to optimize the robustness and transparency of the watermark. On the other hand the watermark security is increased due to the random nature of the genetic selection. The information of the selected MDCT coefficients that carry the watermark bits, are saves in a database for future extraction of the watermark. The proposed method is suitable for online MP3 stores to pursue illegal copies of musical artworks. Experimental results show that the detection ratio of the watermarks at the bitrate of 128kbps remains above 90% while the inaudibility of the watermark is preserved.

Keywords: Content-Based Audio Watermarking, Genetic AudioWatermarking.

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85 IT Systems of the US Federal Courts, Justice, and Governance

Authors: Joseph Zernik

Abstract:

Validity, integrity, and impacts of the IT systems of the US federal courts have been studied as part of the Human Rights Alert-NGO (HRA) submission for the 2015 Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of human rights in the United States by the Human Rights Council (HRC) of the United Nations (UN). The current report includes overview of IT system analysis, data-mining and case studies. System analysis and data-mining show: Development and implementation with no lawful authority, servers of unverified identity, invalidity in implementation of electronic signatures, authentication instruments and procedures, authorities and permissions; discrimination in access against the public and unrepresented (pro se) parties and in favor of attorneys; widespread publication of invalid judicial records and dockets, leading to their false representation and false enforcement. A series of case studies documents the impacts on individuals' human rights, on banking regulation, and on international matters. Significance is discussed in the context of various media and expert reports, which opine unprecedented corruption of the US justice system today, and which question, whether the US Constitution was in fact suspended. Similar findings were previously reported in IT systems of the State of California and the State of Israel, which were incorporated, subject to professional HRC staff review, into the UN UPR reports (2010 and 2013). Solutions are proposed, based on the principles of publicity of the law and the separation of power: Reliance on US IT and legal experts under accountability to the legislative branch, enhancing transparency, ongoing vigilance by human rights and internet activists. IT experts should assume more prominent civic duties in the safeguard of civil society in our era.

Keywords: E-justice, federal courts, United States, human rights, banking regulation.

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84 Cable Tension Control and Analysis of Reel Transparency for 6-DOF Haptic Foot Platform on a Cable-Driven Locomotion Interface

Authors: Martin J.-D. Otis, Thien-Ly Nguyen-Dang, Thierry Laliberte, Denis Ouellet, Denis Laurendeau, Clement Gosselin

Abstract:

A Cable-Driven Locomotion Interface provides a low inertia haptic interface and is used as a way of enabling the user to walk and interact with virtual surfaces. These surfaces generate Cartesian wrenches which must be optimized for each motorized reel in order to reproduce a haptic sensation in both feet. However, the use of wrench control requires a measure of the cable tensions applied to the moving platform. The latter measure may be inaccurate if it is based on sensors located near the reel. Moreover, friction hysteresis from the reel moving parts needs to be compensated for with an evaluation of low angular velocity of the motor shaft. Also, the pose of the platform is not known precisely due to cable sagging and mechanical deformation. This paper presents a non-ideal motorized reel design with its corresponding control strategy that aims at overcoming the aforementioned issues. A transfert function of the reel based on frequency responses in function of cable tension and cable length is presented with an optimal adaptative PIDF controller. Finally, an hybrid position/tension control is discussed with an analysis of the stability for achieving a complete functionnality of the haptic platform.

Keywords: haptic, reel, transparency, cable, tension, control

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