PERFORMANCE AMBIGUITY AND FLEXIBILITY IN BUYER-SUPPLIER RELATIONS ►Emmanuel Chao and Mushumbusi Paul Kato
ABSTRACT Performance ambiguity (performance evaluation problem) has been mainly used as a predictor in most studies related to supplier-buyer relations. This study however shifts this focus by using it as an outcome variable. Performance ambiguity has been conceived as a concept under behavioral uncertainty, which brings a challenging task in separating the two. Performance ambiguity being an ex-post variable and the fact that opportunism is a hidden aspect in this construct makes it of an interest to understand. Findings reflect a significant role of flexibility on performance evaluation problem and suggest the focus on flexibility to be handled with care to extent it does not escalate the performance evaluation problem. Keywords:Performance evaluation, flexibility, environmental uncertainty, asset specificity, Inter-firm cooperation
FINANCING SMALL AND MEDIUM SCALE BUSINESS IN AFRICAN COUNTRIES: PROBLEMS AND PROSPECTS ►Emeka E. Ene and Josephine C. Ene
Access to finance has been noted as one of the major challenges impeding the survival and growth of the SME sector in most of African countries. This review paper provides a comprehensive discussion on access to finance by the Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) sector in African countries. The problems of access to finance, gaps and the reasons for the gaps in SME financing in African countries are discussed. Gaps in SME financing were discussed in relation to Stiglitz and Weiss (1981) credit rationing theory which advocates that agency problems and asymmetric information are the main reasons for the credit rationing behaviors of credit providers to SMEs. The paper reveals that access to finance by SMEs is still a major challenge impeding the realization of the full potential of SMEs as engines of poverty alleviation, employment creation and economic growth in Africa. Therefore it is recommended that policy efforts aimed at solving access to finance challenges must be monitored and empirically tested on a regular basis to enable informed policy thrusts that would enhance SMEs access to financing.
Keywords:Access to finance, Small and Medium Entreprises, Financing, Poverty Alleviation
MANAGERS VS. PROFESSIONALS: A CROSS-CULTURAL STUDY IN ETHICS ►Chung-wen Chen
In this study, the author compared the differences in ethical reasoning between managers and professionals and examined whether this individual-level association is influenced by country-level factors. The statistical findings, based on a data set derived from the 2005–2008 World Values Survey (6,630 final samples from 26 nations) showed that managers are more likely to justify ethically suspect behaviors than professionals are and that the job position-ethics relationship is influenced by cultural values, including assertiveness, institutional collectivism, and power distance, and by social institutions, including education accessibility and political constraints.
Keywords: managers, professionals, ethics, cultural values, social institutions