Business - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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How does the Indian diaspora help drive trade and investment ties between India and North America? An exploratory study

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

This study examines the role that the Indian diaspora plays in helping to drive trade and investment ties between India on one hand and Canada and the United States on the other. The Indian diaspora is becoming increasingly important in both political and economic terms in North America. As trade and investment ties continue to grow between a fast developing India and Canada and the United States, the Indian diaspora has been playing an important role in driving this relationship. This study utilizes the concepts of acculturation, bicultural identity, brain circulation, social capital literature and investment theories to analyze the impact that the diaspora has on this relationship. It examines the complex attitudes that the diaspora has towards the home and host countries, and looks into how these help to drive their actions towards these countries. It points out the differences between the attitudes and activities of the Indian diaspora in the U.S. and the attitudes and activities of the Indian diaspora in Canada. It also tries to determine whether the current theories of investment do in fact predict the behaviour of the Indian diaspora when it comes to their investment and trade facilitation behaviours. This is a two-part study that employs both qualitative and quantitative methods. The first part of the study involves a questionnaire survey with 158 managers, executives and entrepreneurs of Indian descent living in the U.S. and Canada while the second part involves more detailed follow up interviews with 25 of these respondents. The results indicate that the Indian diaspora does play an important part in driving trade and investment between Indian and North America. However, there are clear differences between how the diaspora in Canada and how the diaspora in the U.S. does this.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
R
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (Ph.D.)

Conceptual model design for better understanding

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

The consistent underperformance of information systems developments (ISD) projects over the last 30 to 40 years has lead researchers and practitioners to recognize that there is significant room for improvement in the development process. Tools used for ISD have evolved in the continuous search for improved project success rates. The introduction of structured methodologies, object oriented methods, the unified modeling language (UML), and agile development have resulted in incremental advances. However, it is believed that problems persist because of the difficulties of understanding systems requirements. ISD research has traditionally focused on introducing tools that better represent the system under development but has largely ignored the user’s cognitive abilities to understand the representation. This results in miscommunication between analysts and users. This study takes a user-centric approach to investigate presentation techniques of conceptual models that can facilitate users’ understanding of complex representations. The research extends theories from cognitive psychology to the field of Information Systems Development. The cognitive load theory describes sources of cognitive load that either impede learning and understanding (extraneous or intrinsic cognitive load) or promotes understanding such as germane cognitive load.The Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning (CTML) introduces presentation techniques that can reduce extraneous cognitive load. Two experimental studies were conducted to measure the effectiveness of applying CTML principles to the requirement gathering phase of ISD projects. The experiments manipulated popular modeling methods (entity-relationship diagrams and the UML diagrams) to show that applying design principles to reduce extraneous cognitive load can lead to better understanding. Contributions include the introduction of a user-centric approach to ISD research, extending cognitive theories to systems analysis, and proposing design updates to CASE tools to take advantage of presentation techniques uncovered during the experiments.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
D
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (Ph.D.)

The role of HR in increasing empowerment and employee involvement with knowledge workers: The case of SOFTTEK

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Changing organizational culture can be a difficult if not impossible task. Several studies identify factors which contribute to organizational culture. We explore two such factors, empowerment and employee involvement. We study an organization which is attempting to improve organizational culture. Through the evaluation of employee perspectives and the integration of existing models of empowerment and employee involvement, we provide recommendations to enhance these factors to trigger a shift in organizational culture. The human resources department maintains several roles in the organization. In these roles HR representatives have the opportunity to affect empowerment by applying HR strategies. They possess knowledge, skills, relationships, and the position to champion empowerment initiatives, facilitate the development of empowering managers, implement empowerment programs, and provide a knowledge base regarding empowerment. We provide an analysis of a variety of perspectives and options that may be applied by HR professionals to enhance empowerment.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Satisfaction as a factor influencing retention rates of international students at SFU

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The study addresses a threefold research question: (1) What factors contribute most to the feeling of satisfaction with SFU; (2) What factors discriminate between students who are thinking of leaving and those who are not; (3) What is the relationship between students' satisfaction with SFU and their intention to drop out. A feedback survey of existing international students, analysed using qualitative and quantitative methods, reveals the following: international students are less likely to drop out of SFU if they are satisfied; if their expectations about SFU are met ('confirmation'); or if they come from one of the East Asian countries. Our core recommendations for SFU International include ways to: (1) proactively orient new international students to SFU's teaching and learning systems; (2) re-position itself as a welcoming place for international students, including improved physical facilities; (3) manage international students' perceptions of SFU, thus increasing their level of satisfaction.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Causes of anticipatory perceptions affecting readiness for change

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Anticipatory perceptions appear to be a hindrance in implementing a successful organizational change as they negatively impact the employees' attitudes and behaviours. A study took place at the Ridge Meadows Hospital (RMH), which intended to tap the nurses' concerns about the effects of the upcoming merger of the two Extended Care Units (ECU) on their personal and work experiences. The change initiative was assessed and the main issues were analyzed. Among other issues, problem of anticipatory perceptions clearly emerged out of their responses, which were generated through a series of random one-on-one interviews with the employees and a comprehensive survey. The causes of negative anticipatory perceptions are described in the hospital settings, compared with the professional literature, and implications of the problem for the organizations are discussed. Recommendations are proposed on how to minimize the effects of negative anticipatory perceptions on employees and ensure a successful merger.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

The role of satisfaction and participation in technology acceptance

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) suggests that two factors predict computer acceptance behaviour: perceived ease of use, and perceived usefulness. User participation is also believed to positively affect these two determinants. Researchers have suggested that user acceptance is best measured by measuring the satisfaction level of users with IS. This study not only measures acceptance through satisfaction with the new IS but also explores whether or not users' current satisfaction with the existing IS have any significant affect on the users' perception of ease of use, and usefulness of a new IS. A model was established with measures of perceived ease of use, perceived usefulness, current level of satisfaction with existing IS, user participation in developing new IS and perceived satisfaction. The results of this study indicate that user participation and current satisfaction positively affect perceived ease of use. The results also validate the TAM.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Canadian cellular industry: Consumer switching behaviour

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Due to the increased competition and high costs of acquisition in the cellular industry, it has become increasingly important for companies to focus on retaining clients. This paper outlines the current industry conditions and studies the causes of consumer switching behaviour, as outlined by Susan Keaveney (1995) in her study of the service industry, and identifies additional factors specific to the cellular industry. The focus of the study is to identify the most important factors that cause consumers to switch. Using primary research, the author evaluates how TELUS Mobility is rated on each of the factors against the competition, by its own clients and the competitor's clients. Finally, the author provides recommendations to TELUS Mobility to effectively enhance its customer retention and build long-term client relationships.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

The significance of branding in the pharmaceutical industry

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Traditionally, and for several years, consumer goods companies have relied heavily on branding to successfully market and sell products. Recently, however, the pharmaceutical industry has recognized the importance and significance of branding even more and has re-structured their marketing departments to now include brand managers for their products. Consumer goods companies have followed a particular structure in how they brand their products. It is still debatable, however, if this model can be transferred and adapted to the pharmaceutical industry. This paper discusses the meaning of branding in general, and discusses the advantages and disadvantages of it. Next, the need for branding in the pharmaceutical company is discussed followed by the advantages and challenges of branding in this industry. Examples are given of pharmaceutical companies that currently use these branding strategies. The paper proceeds with a discussion about specific branding strategies that are effective for this industry, and finally, consumer perceptions of generic versus branded drugs are examined. In addition to the secondary research discussed in this paper, additional primary research is conducted to answer several questions pertaining to consumer views on branded versus generic medications in terms of perception of price differential, advertising differences, and purchase decision influences. The results are discussed followed by some implications and conclusions. Finally, the project concludes with some recommendations to pharmaceutical companies about the results of the paper and tips for successful branding.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Cultural differences - The role it plays in skilled Chinese immigrant underemployment

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This paper approaches the problem of skilled immigrant underemployment at the human resource professional level by focusing on the relationship between communications disconnects caused by cultural differences and hiring decisions. It was confirmed that within the Vancouver tech industry, only a small percentage of skilled Asian immigrants applying get hired with the two most commonly cited factors affecting employers decision to hire being communication skills and the ability to work within the Canadian context. Employers were aware that they are turning away skilled Asian immigrants, but felt it was a 'business decision' based on perceived negative effects on productivity. Employers were concerned with not only the cost, but also the knowledge required for successful integration. Although there is a definite need for cultural integration programs, it may be unrealistic to expect employers to provide them and there may be a role for educational institutions to help fill this void.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

CWRTC's entry strategy into China's construction industry to sell water reuse solutions

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The purpose of the paper is to provide a marketing strategy for CWRTC (China Water Reuse Trade Consortium) to enter into the construction industry in China that needs new water reuse technologies. In this paper, the authors first review the current water and wastewater market in China, and identify the prospects for future growth. Then the authors analyze in depth the competitors, substitutes, buyers, and suppliers of CWRTC. The authors also investigate the internal strengths and weaknesses as well as external opportunities and threats. After the research and analysis, the authors make recommendations for CWRTC to sell its water reuse products and services into the residential, commercial, and industrial property development market and the building retrofit market. The authors also discuss the potential risks and suggest solutions. The authors end the paper with recommendations for potential issues leading to the next research stage.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)