Global Competitiveness (global + competitiveness)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Supply Chain Strategy, Product Characteristics, and Performance Impact: Evidence from Chinese Manufacturers,

Yinan Qi
ABSTRACT Supply chain management has become one of the most popular approaches to enhance the global competitiveness of business corporations today. Firms must have clear strategic thinking in order to effectively organize such complicated activities, resources, communications, and processes. An emerging body of literature offers a framework that identifies three kinds of supply chain strategies: lean strategy, agile strategy, and lean/agile strategy based on in-depth case studies. Extant research also suggests that supply chain strategies must be matched with product characteristics in order for firms to achieve better performance. This article investigates supply chain strategies and empirically tests the supply chain strategy model that posits lean, agile, and lean/agile approaches using data collected from 604 manufacturing firms in China. Cluster analyses of the data indicate that Chinese firms are adopting a variation of lean, agile, and lean/agile supply chain strategies identified in the western literature. However, the data reveal that some firms have a traditional strategy that does not emphasize either lean or agile principles. These firms perform worse than firms that have a strategy focused on lean, agile, or lean/agile supply chain. The strategies are examined with respect to product characteristics and financial and operational performance. The article makes significant contributions to the supply chain management literature by examining the supply chain strategies used by Chinese firms. In addition, this work empirically tests the applicability of supply chain strategy models that have not been rigorously tested empirically or in the fast-growing Chinese economy. [source]

Flavor Variability and Flavor Stability of U.S.-Produced Whole Milk Powder

M.A. Lloyd
ABSTRACT:, Flavor variability and stability of U.S.-produced whole milk powder (WMP) are important parameters for maximizing quality and global competitiveness of this commodity. This study characterized flavor and flavor stability of domestic WMP. Freshly produced (<1 mo) WMP was collected from 4 U.S. production facilities 5 times over a 1 y period. Each sample was analyzed initially and every 2 mo for sensory profile, volatiles, color, water activity, and moisture through 12 mo storage. Selected volatiles were quantified using solid phase microextraction (SPME) with gas chromatography/mass-spectrometry: dimethyl sulfide, 2-methylbutanal, 3-methylbutanal, hexanal, 2-heptanone, heptanal, 1-octen-3-ol, octanal, 3-octen-2-one, and nonanal. Multiple linear regression with backwards elimination was applied to generate equations to predict grassy and painty flavors based on selected volatiles. All WMP were between 2% and 3% moisture and 0.11 and 0.25 water activity initially. WMP varied in initial flavor profiles with varying levels of cooked, milk fat, and sweet aromatic flavors. During storage, grassy and painty flavors developed while sweet aromatic flavor intensities decreased (P,< 0.05). Painty and grassy flavors were confirmed by increased levels (P,< 0.05) of lipid oxidation products such as hexanal, heptanal, and octanal. Hexanal, 2-heptanone, 1-octen-3-ol, and nonanal concentrations were best predictors of grassy flavor (R2= 0.38,,P,< 0.0001) while hexanal, 2-methylbutanal, 3-methylbutanal, octanal, and 3-octen-2-one concentrations were best predictors of painty flavor (R2= 0.61,,P,< 0.0001). These results provide baseline information to determine specific factors that can be controlled to optimize U.S. WMP flavor and flavor stability. [source]

Analysts' Forecasts in Asian-Pacific Markets: The Relationship among Macroeconomic Factors, Accounting Systems, Bias and Accuracy

Ervin L. Black
In this study, we describe determinants of accuracy/bias of analysts' forecasts in 13 economies of the Asian-Pacific region. Examination of the accuracy of analysts' earnings forecasts allows us to judge how accounting systems and macroeconomic distinctions in this region affect earnings predictability. As many investors rely on analysts' earnings forecasts instead of producing their own, the growth of international investment means forecasts in non-US markets will become increasingly important to investors worldwide. Using a sample of firms with data available on Global Vantage and I/B/E/S International, we find that the analysts on average have a pessimistic bias in Asian-Pacific markets. We examine whether macroeconomic factors explain part of the difference in the size of analyst forecast errors, using the global competitiveness rankings of the World Economic Forum (WEF). We expect that those nations which are more open to foreign trade and investment and are ranked more highly by the WEF in its Global Competitiveness Index will also have more accurate analyst forecasts, as increased global competitiveness demands greater integration into the world economy, and such integration should lead to more transparent financial statements and more accurate earnings forecasts. Our findings are consistent with this prediction. We also find that countries with low book-tax conformity have more accurate earnings forecasts. [source]

,The Taste of Paradise': Selling Fiji and FIJI Water

John Connell
Abstract: Effective global competitiveness is rare in the Pacific islands, yet FIJI Water has been a major success story since 1997, exporting bottled water to the USA and elsewhere. A bland commodity has been linked to an ,exotic' place, and sold to elite consumers, as a form of cultural capital. The company website and newspaper extol the virtues of a ,pristine' product, produced in a natural context, in an environmentally sensitive manner. Marketing these themes and product placement have enabled success in a highly competitive market. Place has been used as a means of marketing perceived taste, distinctiveness and quality. [source]