Emerald | European Business Review | Table of Contents http://www.emeraldinsight.com/0955-534X.htm Table of contents from the most recently published issue of European Business Review Journal en-gb Tue, 06 May 2014 00:00:00 +0100 2013 Emerald Group Publishing Limited editorial@emeraldinsight.com support@emeraldinsight.com 60 Emerald | European Business Review | Table of Contents http://www.emeraldinsight.com/common_assets/img/covers_journal/ebrcover.gif http://www.emeraldinsight.com/0955-534X.htm 120 157 Rigour in research: theory in the research approach http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?issn=0955-534X&volume=26&issue=3&articleid=17109678&show=abstract http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/EBR-09-2013-0115 <strong>Abstract</strong><br /><br /><B>Purpose</B> – The purpose of this paper is to reexamine the importance of theory in research. The paper focuses on discussing the underlying principles that influence the research approach. <B>Design/methodology/approach</B> – This is a theoretical paper that discusses the importance of theory in research and opens up the area for discussion and debate. <B>Findings</B> – The paper contributes to the research methodology literature by adopting a sense making perspective, and focusing on the ontological and epistemological dimension of research. The paper furthers the debate on the link between theory and research, as the basis for developing further theory. <B>Research limitations/implications</B> – The paper provides a limited focus to management research and has not at this stage engaged in any practical testing of the ideas. <B>Practical implications</B> – There is an opportunity for changing practice at a variety of levels in engaging with research. These include implications for researchers, teachers, students and practitioners. <B>Originality/value</B> – The paper re-emphasises the importance in understanding philosophical concerns which underpins research activity. It is designed as a tool for discussion and guidance. Article literatinetwork@emeraldinsight.com (Alan Johnston) Tue, 06 May 2014 00:00:00 +0100 Antecedents and consequences of replacing international independent intermediaries http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?issn=0955-534X&volume=26&issue=3&articleid=17109679&show=abstract http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/EBR-09-2013-0118 <strong>Abstract</strong><br /><br /><B>Purpose</B> – What characterizes the relationships with intermediaries that are soon to be replaced, and are the replacements successful? The paper aims to discuss these issues. <B>Design/methodology/approach</B> – The study applies a longitudinal design. The paper conducted a survey among a sample of exporters concerning their relationships with independent intermediaries in terms of trust, commitment, communication, control and two performance variables; financial performance and strategic goal achievement. Five years thereafter the author contacted the same companies again and questioned which independent intermediaries had been replaced in the period. The author then compared the replaced intermediaries with the extended intermediaries before they were replaced and analysed changes in the evaluations of the relationships and of the performance after the replacement. <B>Findings</B> – The relationships with terminated intermediaries that were replaced by sales subsidiary or home-based direct sales were characterized having higher trust, communication and control than extended relationships before replacement. While it may be surprising that these quite successful relationships were terminated, this is in line with internationalization process theories. The replacements, both intermediaries that were replaced by other intermediaries and by sales subsidiary/home-based direct sales, were highly successful in terms of improvement in performance and behavioural relationship variables. <B>Research limitations/implications</B> – The empirical findings are limited by the sample and by data collection from the principal only in the dyadic relations. <B>Practical implications</B> – International independent intermediaries should analyse the likelihood of being replaced by the principal because the relationship or the performance is unsatisfactory, but also because of satisfactory evaluations. Terminations of satisfactory relationships tend to be accompanied by change in operation mode to internal organization. The independent intermediary should in such cases build a defence structure against unwanted termination and/or prepare for buyout. The success of the replacements suggests that international marketers benefit from being proactive in replacing intermediaries with new intermediaries or with a hierarchal entry mode. <B>Originality/value</B> – This is the first study that applies most of these variables from interorganizational relations theory in the study of international independent intermediary replacements. It is also the first to give insight into the consequences of intermediary terminations. Article literatinetwork@emeraldinsight.com (Erik B. Nes) Tue, 06 May 2014 00:00:00 +0100 Internationalization and relationship marketing: an introduction http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?issn=0955-534X&volume=26&issue=3&articleid=17109680&show=abstract http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/EBR-05-2013-0087 <strong>Abstract</strong><br /><br /><B>Purpose</B> – This paper aims to integrate the concepts of the internationalization process and relationship marketing (RM). It identifies two stages for internationalization (pre-internationalization and post-internationalization) and assigns RM components for each step. <B>Design/methodology/approach</B> – The study undertakes a review and synthesis of the extant literature examining internationalization and RM. It then identifies two stages of the internationalization process and its steps, associated with RM components. <B>Findings</B> – The study highlights that each step in the internationalization process requires appropriate RM component to be implemented successfully. <B>Practical implications</B> – Findings of this study highlight the importance of managing internationalization for firms intending to enter to foreign market and identify the issues that need to be understood, if firms are to effectively manage their internationalization strategy. <B>Originality/value</B> – The paper is the first to integrate the concepts of internationalization and RM and to identify the factors that make managing these two types of firm's strategy. Article literatinetwork@emeraldinsight.com (Morteza Khojastehpour, Raechel Johns) Tue, 06 May 2014 00:00:00 +0100 Collaboration in the context of micro businesses: The case of Terracotta artisans in Impruneta (Italy) http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?issn=0955-534X&volume=26&issue=3&articleid=17109681&show=abstract http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/EBR-08-2013-0107 <strong>Abstract</strong><br /><br /><B>Purpose</B> – Collaboration among businesses, particularly in the current global economic downturn, can be a key strategy contributing to their survival. This study examines the case of micro firms involved in Terracotta art in Impruneta, Italy, and the extent to which collaboration occurs among the local artisans. In doing so, the study aims to consider collaboration theory in the context of micro firms. <B>Design/methodology/approach</B> – Semi-structured, face-to-face and telephone interviews were conducted among the owners and managers of ten of Impruneta's 16 Terracotta firms. <B>Findings</B> – Whilst much of the academic literature highlights the multiple benefits of collaborative relationships, most participants acknowledge very limited engagement in collaboration. From the comments gathered, two distinct groups emerged, one composed of members of the local Terracotta association, who to some extent collaborate with one another, and the second, the non-members, who pursue their interests individually, or marginally collaborate outside Impruneta. Further, a number of barriers preventing collaboration were identified. <B>Practical implications</B> – The apparent weak collaborative relationships among respondents may have ramifications for the further development of their sector, for instance, restricting innovation and marketing know-how, both of which could help address such external pressures as competition. The involvement of third parties, such as the local town hall or chambers of commerce, was suggested by several participants to help increase collaboration. <B>Originality/value</B> – The study focuses on micro firms, a group that, despite its relevance for many countries' economies, has received limited attention from academic research, including with regard to collaboration and collaboration theory. Article literatinetwork@emeraldinsight.com (Abel Duarte Alonso, Alessandro Bressan) Tue, 06 May 2014 00:00:00 +0100 Traceability and supply chain complexity: confronting the issues and concerns http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?issn=0955-534X&volume=26&issue=3&articleid=17109682&show=abstract http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/EBR-09-2013-0113 <strong>Abstract</strong><br /><br /><B>Purpose</B> – The purpose of this paper is to examine the recent horsemeat scandal in European markets. The paper is primarily interested in how this scandal has festered and what perhaps ought to be done to ensure consumers get what they feel they should be getting. It also attempts to identify the lapses that have created the basis for this to happen. <B>Design/methodology/approach</B> – The paper mainly draws on reports in the media and discussions generated following the scandal to assess the issues under consideration. It also looks at the issues surrounding the global supply chain environment and provides solutions on how to strengthen the weak links in the meat supply chain. <B>Findings</B> – The paper finds that the scandal has damaged consumer confidence in the industry's ability to regulate itself. It notes that pinpointing risk has become a difficult struggle as retailers are often inundated with data, and suppliers, for lack of time, have become reluctant to “waste time” completing check-lists and audits. The paper maintains that there is the urgent need for adequate inspection and a means to incentivise the food industry to police itself much better. It recognises that lack of visibility and a lack of direct influence over suppliers further down the supply chain have led to distinct problems within the food industry. <B>Originality/value</B> – The paper contributes to an ongoing discussion that has been of considerable concern to many consumers. Its importance lies in the fact that it suggests important measures, which, if implemented, could help in ensuring the elimination of fraud in the food chain. Article literatinetwork@emeraldinsight.com (Sam Sarpong) Tue, 06 May 2014 00:00:00 +0100