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Market Regulation and Marketing of Enterprises as a Factor for the Development of SMEs in Kosovo

Abstract

Based on observation, enterprises are an economic organization established to make a profit. On the other hand, marketers are responsible for ensuring customer’s satisfaction. This is done firstly by increasing the growth of sales which will bring good business results. To reconcile these two approaches, we have to distinguish what entrepreneurs that run SMEs do. The environment has a significant influence on the development of SMEs. Furthermore, we consider the Legal issues and Legislation as the main factor that will let SMEs satisfy customer needs and generate profits. Also, we conducted field research where we used survey questionnaire as an instrument for data collection. Based on the findings of this study, we drew out conclusions and recommendations that will be useful for the future treatment of SMEs, and as a real force of the economic development of a country. All this, therefore, should be based on marketing concept requirements and appropriate legislation as support and insurance for investments made.

Open access
Psychological Contract, Internal Branding and Employee Turnover in an IT Company

Abstract

We are living in a time of huge competitiveness, where many institutions fight hard for their survival. Unemployment, exclusion, xenophobia, poverty and disrespect towards nature and our peers are causing unbearable impact to humanity. This situation is challenging us to retrieve and keep alive the true values, without any distinction of cultures, religions and ways of thinking. Only this way we can contribute to a fairer, inclusive and better society. A corporation can contribute to the employees' well-being, personal and professional fulfillment. The present study is focused in the employee turnover and how it is affected by the internal branding and the psychological contract, in a company of informatic services – in which we mainly considered its organization and human resources. So, we aimed to contribute to the understanding of: internal branding and psychological contract, and their interrelation; effects of internal branding and psychological contract in employees; the turnover (common in this company of informatics services). A questionnaire was developed to measure the internal branding and employees' psychological contract. We used several statistical techniques to analyze the data, namely, descriptive statistics analysis, factorial analysis in principal components, comparison of means and correlations among the resulting dimensions. Findings reveal low values for the internal branding and psychological contract, although, men feel slightly more satisfied with their situation than women. A positive association was found between the internal branding and the psychological contract, admitted as a possible cause of turnover. Anyway, results denote an insufficient concern of the company towards its human resources.

Open access
Societal Conflict Defies Peace Diplomacy: Evidence from the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict

Abstract

This paper synthesizes interrelated postulations from the systemic conflict and intergroup conflict theorizations to glean the societal conflict conceptual framework. The paper employs this conceptual framework to appraise the validity of the societal characterization of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict during the peace diplomacy era. Accordingly, the analysis uses the ‘structured, focused comparison’ qualitative method to investigate attitudinal and behavioral aspects of five cases of intercommunal violence within the Palestinian-Israeli context. The observed cumulative evidence indicates that the unresolved conflict has been exhibiting the conceptual properties of societal conflict throughout more than 25 years since the introduction of the Middle East peace process in 1991. Overall, the study explores the social, psychological, and political aspects of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, accentuates the societal underpinnings of intercommunal violence, and provides basis for perceiving the limited success of peace diplomacy.

Open access
Teachers Scoring and Grading of Students’ Responses to Tasks: The Ghanaian Basic School Experience

Abstract

This paper explored the scoring and grading practices of teachers in basic schools. The study sought to understand the various factors teachers take into account when scoring students’ responses to tasks in the classroom. The stratified sampling procedure was used to select 278 primary and junior high school teachers from whom data were collected for the study. In the descriptive analysis, the results revealed that teachers considered students’ behaviour such as punctuality, interest in subject and neatness of work presented, and number of questions attempted by a student, and awarded marks when grading. These academic and non-academic factors considered by teachers in this study during scoring and grading are consistent with the literature. In independent samples t-test analyses, primary school teachers did not differ significantly from their counterparts in the junior high schools in terms of factors they considered during the scoring and grading of students’ responses to tasks in the classroom. This study adds a circumstantial data to the existing debate on teacher classroom assessment practices.

Open access
The Value of Integrating 21st Century Skills into the Enterprise of Teaching Sociology

Abstract

The 21st Century labour market is changing fast with unprecedented acceleration. Training in the field of sociology follows the pattern of education which is a process of leading out of ignorance and bringing one up to another plain, a higher one, within a societal context. Its organisation and curricular should be done within the frame work of the general society and life. It ought to follow the trend of the time. This article discusses the discipline of sociology, its concept and teaching approach from the ambiance of integrating 21st century skills into it. Using the qualitative method, the article examines the study of sociology in the light of the 21st Century, and reveals that students will be confronted with the effects social institutions, globalization, and technological advancement have on education in general. In responding to this challenge, the article reveals that sociology, through studies and statistical research across societies, will be able to establish that the more technical skills and knowledge one gains, the easier it is to move up to the upper class in the society (Max Weber). As a study of social life, sociology adapts and allows its fields to be re-structured to meet up with the demands of the “ever-changing” social life. Since the world in the 21st century has experienced technological and social developments and challenges, which have many impacts on the lives of individuals living in it, the teaching of sociology has to be abreast with the demands of the current century.

Open access
AHP Analysis of Cross-Cultural Friction and Synergy in Korean Subsidiaries of Austrian Companies

Abstract

Academic research regarding cross-cultural management has gained fundamental importance in today’s globalised business world. Within this field, this paper examines cultural synergy and friction of Austrian and Korean business culture. Austrian companies have a high export orientation and have shown strong interest in doing business with Korea, which has been identified as an exceptionally attractive location for subsidiaries of foreign MNEs. Applying the Analytical Hierarchy Process, Korean employees in Korean subsidiaries of Austrian companies were surveyed regarding their satisfaction levels in different job aspects as well as their preferences regarding alternatives in the criteria leadership style, work teams, and tasks and responsibilities. The study found synergy between the preferences of Korean employees and Austrian management in the importance placed on challenging projects and chances for personal achievements at work, as well as the lack of desire for close personal relations with superiors and colleagues. The latter represents a unique finding, contrary to what had been suggested by the relevant literature. Additionally, the research found areas of cultural friction regarding the importance assigned to consultative decision-making, a relaxed use of time, and freedom when performing work tasks. Overall good satisfaction levels of Korean employees in the subsidiaries were reported.

Open access
Between Jazz, Cherry Blossoms, and Baseball: Transculturality in the Publications of Murakami Haruki

Abstract

In this day and age a continuous flow of ideas and culture takes place, which is part of the globalisation process. These exchanges influence the development of a transcultural literature. Murakami Haruki is not only a transcultural writer, but one of the most popular and internationally acclaimed authors of contemporary Japanese literature who has changed the literary scene in Japan since the publication of his debut novel Kaze no uta o kike (Hear the Wind Sing). Murakami has experimented with postmodern expressions and eventually developed his own writing style, which integrates elements of Western cultures into his works. This paper focuses on the author’s transcultural strategy, which is often reflected in his choice of the setting and time frame, the frequent mentioning of cultural consumer goods and linguistic features such as the utilisation of loanwords. In particular, references to music and literature play a major role in Murakami’s publications. This paper analyses how and to what extent transculturality influences the characters, their actions, and the storyline on the basis of the short story “Nemuri” (Sleep) published in 1989. In the process it is concluded that, above all, these references underpin aspects such as the search for identity, the escape into ‘another world’, and the rejection of societal norms and values.

Open access
The Bunkyū Restoration: The Restoration of Imperial Tombs and Re-Design of Imperial Ancestor Worship

Abstract

This paper aims to analyse a possible connection between the renovation of imperial tombs in the Bunkyū era (1861-1864) and the restoration of imperial power in 1868. While there is no direct continuity between these two events, a connection certainly exists. In a time when Japan faced foreign threats and domestic turmoil, certain groups and persons felt it was time to elevate the institution of the emperor to the-supposed-former glory. One way of doing this was the restoration of the imperial tombs that had fallen into disrepair and the renewal of imperial ancestor worship. The Bunkyū Restoration can be seen as one of the many puzzle pieces that together formed the process that led to the Meiji Restoration.

Open access
China’s New Silk Roads. Categorising and Grouping the World: Beijing’s 16+1+X European Formula

Abstract

In autumn 2013, Chinese President Xi Jinping presented his Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Central, Eastern, and Southeastern Europe play an important role in this ambitious infrastructure and connectivity project. The analysis of the 16+1 cooperation format, established by Beijing in 2012, shows that Beijing is able to establish new regional groupings that have the potential to undermine the unity of a larger regional bloc. Yet, it also demonstrates that China lacks a coherent BRI master plan. Rather, it pragmatically adapts its strategies to challenges and external criticism. The European Union (EU), notably the European Parliament (EP), became since 2015 more critical of the strategic impacts of BRI on Europe. Austria, which recognised the economic opportunities offered by BRI only recently, supports a common EU position. While Austria plays a strong-if not a leading-role in two Central and Eastern European cooperation mechanisms that may in the future also address BRI, that is, the Salzburg Forum and the Central European Defense Cooperation (CEDC), 16+1 remains the key institution for multi- and bilateral agreements on the New Silk Roads in this region. Austria, however, will remain only an observer and thus an ‘X’ in the 16+1+X format, reducing Vienna’s influence.

Open access
Close Encounter of the 3D Kind: Examining Constructions of the Foreign ‘Other’ in Japanese Videogames

Abstract

As a relatively young medium, videogames have become an important part of global popular culture that cannot be underestimated. Due to rapid technological advances, the contents of today’s videogames are becoming increasingly complex. While games are publicly often denounced for causing aggression, violence, or even mental illness, game studies oppose such stereotypical views and seek possibilities to conduct research on digital games in a systematic and thorough manner. This paper draws on approaches from game studies to examine videogames from the perspective of Japanese studies. Assuming that videogames, like other mass media, take part in and shape socially relevant discourses, it will be analysed how the relation between ‘self’ and ‘other’ is constructed in Fire Emblem: Sōen no kiseki and Akatsuki no megami, Tales of Symphonia, and Zeruda no densetsu: Mujura no kamen. For this purpose, the games’ content and character design will be taken into account. Special emphasis will be placed on the question how the relationship between ‘self’ and ‘other’ becomes manifest in the relation between the player and the characters that is constructed during gameplay.

Open access