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  • Liljeblom, Eva; Vaihekoski, Mika (Elsevier, 2010)
    Increased media exposure to layoffs and corporate quarterly financial reporting have created arguable a common perception – especially favored by the media itself – that the companies have been forced to improve their financial performance from quarter to quarter. Academically the relevant question is whether companies themselves feel that they are exposed to short-term pressure to perform even if it means that they have to compromise company’s long-term future. This paper studies this issue using results from a survey conducted among the 500 largest companies in Finland. The results show that companies in general feel moderate short-term pressure, with reasonable dispersion across firms. There seems to be a link between the degree of pressure felt, and the firm’s ownership structure, i.e. we find support for the existence of short-term versus long-term owners. We also find significant ownership related differences, in line with expectations, in how such short-term pressure is reflected in actual decision variables such as the investment criteria used.
  • Voima, Päivi; Heinonen, Kristina; Strandvik, Tore; Mickelsson, Karl-Jacob; Arantola-Hattab, Leena Johanna (2011)
    This paper conceptualises customer ecosystems, which are defined as systems of actors related to the customer that are relevant concerning a specific service. Moving from provider-driven dyads and service systems to customer ecosystems, the paper uncovers multiple implications for service marketers regarding the definition of the customer, configurations of value units, scope of value formation, as well as relevant actor systems. The paper extends the perspective on service and suggests implications for research and practice.
  • Holmlund, Maria (Emerald Group Publishing Ltd., 2008)
  • Vaara, Eero; Tienari, Janne (Academy of Management Review 2008, vol 33, No. 4, 985-993, 2008)
    Few studies have examined legitimation in multinational corporations from a discursive perspective. To complement the existing institutional literature, we adopt a critical discourse analysis perspective that allows us to examine the microlevel processes of discursive legitimation. We provide an example of a media text— dealing with a production unit shutdown—to demonstrate how this perspective elucidates the various textual strategies used to legitimate multinational corporations’ actions and their controversial consequences.
  • Samuelson, Olle; Björk, Bo-Christer (2011)
    Three strategically important uses of IT in the construction industry are the storage and management of project documents on webservers (EDM), the electronic handling of orders and invoices between companies (EDI) and the use of 3-D models including non-geometrical attributes for integrated design and construction (BIM). In a broad longitudinal survey study of IT use in the Swedish Construction Industry the extent of use of these techniques was measured in 1998, 2000 and 2007. The results showed that EDM and EDI are currently already well-established techniques whereas BIM, although it promises the biggest potential benefits to the industry, only seems to be at the beginning of adoption. In a follow-up to the quantitative studies, the factors affecting the decisions to implement EDM, EDI and BIM as well as the actual adoption processes, were studied using semi-structured interviews with practitioners. The theoretical basis for the interview studies was informed by theoretical frameworks from IT-adoption theory, where in particular the UTAUT model has provided the main basis for the analyses presented here. The results showed that the decisions to take the above technologies into use are made on three differ- ent levels: the individual level, the organizational level in the form of a company, and the organiza- tional level in the form of a project. The different patterns in adoption can to some part be explained by where the decisions are mainly taken. EDM is driven from the organisation/project level, EDI mainly from the organisation/company level, and BIM is driven by individuals pioneering the technique.
  • Lipkin, Michaela; Heinonen, Kristina (2014)
  • Björk, Bo-Christer (Arnolds, 2002)
    A model of the information and material activities that comprise the overall construction process is presented, using the SADT activity modelling methodology. The basic model is further refined into a number of generic information handling activities such as creation of new information, information search and retrieval, information distribution and person-to-person communication. The viewpoint could be described as information logistics. This model is then combined with a more traditional building process model, consisting of phases such as design and construction. The resulting two-dimensional matrix can be used for positioning different types of generic IT-tools or construction specific applications. The model can thus provide a starting point for a discussion of the application of information and communication technology in construction and for measurements of the impacts of IT on the overall process and its related costs.
  • Fougère, Martin; Solitander, Nikodemus (John Wiley & Sons Ltd., 2009)
  • Carlborg, Per; Kindström, Daniel; Kowalkowski, Christian (Emerald Group Publishing Ltd., 2013)
  • Samuelson, Olov; Björk, Bo-Christer (Elsevier BV, 2014)
    The rapid development of IT technology has in the past three decades created opportunities for faster and more efficient processes as well as innovative new working methods in the building industry. This paper presents the results of a longitudinal survey-based study (the ”IT barometer”) of IT use in the Swedish building industry, conducted at several intervals over the period 1998-2011. The results show a rapid increase in general IT use as well as in the use of sector-specific tools. Improving communication and information sharing is a strong driving force for taking IT into use, for instance technologies such as EDM and EDI, although the adoption of the more complex applications (ie BIM) is slower. Interestingly “demands from employees” has over the years become a very important reason for companies to increase their IT use. Leading areas for planned IT investments include document handling and mobile equipment, with BIM technology rather low on the list.
  • Björk, Bo-Christer; Öörni, Anssi (Elsevier, 2009)
    When authors of scholarly articles decide where to submit their manuscripts for peer review and eventual publication, they often base their choice of journals on very incomplete information abouthow well the journals serve the authors’ purposes of informing about their research and advancing their academic careers. The purpose of this study was to develop and test a new method for benchmarking scientific journals, providing more information to prospective authors. The method estimates a number of journal parameters, including readership, scientific prestige, time from submission to publication, acceptance rate and service provided by the journal during the review and publication process. Data directly obtainable from the web, data that can be calculated from such data, data obtained from publishers and editors, and data obtained using surveys with authors are used in the method, which has been tested on three different sets of journals, each from a different discipline. We found a number of problems with the different data acquisition methods, which limit the extent to which the method can be used. Publishers and editors are reluctant to disclose important information they have at hand (i.e. journal circulation, web downloads, acceptance rate). The calculation of some important parameters (for instance average time from submission to publication, regional spread of authorship) can be done but requires quite a lot of work. It can be difficult to get reasonable response rates to surveys with authors. All in all we believe that the method we propose, taking a “service to authors” perspective as a basis for benchmarking scientific journals, is useful and can provide information that is valuable to prospective authors in selected scientific disciplines.
  • Kauppinen-Räisänen, Hannele; Gummerus, Johanna; von Koskull, Catharina; Finne, Åke; Helkkula, Anu; Kowalkowski, Christian; Rindell, Anne (Emerald Group Publishing, 2014)
  • Lundgren, Berndt; Björk, Bo-Christer (2004)
    The ProFacil model is a generic process model defined as a framework model showing the links between the facilities management process and the building end user’s business process. The purpose of using the model is to support more detailed process modelling. The model has been developed using the IDEF0 modelling method. The ProFacil model describes business activities from the generalized point of view as management-, support-, and core processes and their relations. The model defines basic activities in the provision of a facility. Examples of these activities are “operate facilities”, “provide new facilities”, “provide re-build facilities”, “provide maintained facilities” and “perform dispose of facilities”. These are all generic activities providing a basis for a further specialisation of company specific FM activities and their tasks. A facilitator can establish a specialized process model using the ProFacil model and interacting with company experts to describe their company’s specific processes. These modelling seminars or interviews will be done in an informal way, supported by the high-level process model as a common reference.
  • Holmlund-Rytkönen, Maria (Elsevier Inc., 2004)
  • Holmlund, Maria; Hagman, Anne; Polsa, Pia (Emerald Group Publishing, 2011)
  • Kowalkowski, Christian; Witell, Lars; Gustafsson, Anders (Elsevier Inc., 2013)
    Manufacturing firms have always delivered services, by supplying spare parts, installing equipment, training employees, or performing maintenance. In competitive markets though, firms seek new ways to differentiate their business, including an increased focus on service, often referred to as service infusion. Of the studies that seek to understand this phenomenon, most focus on large multinational firms; little is known about service infusion in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). This study adopts an explorative approach to investigate how SMEs construct new value constellations that enable value creation through services. The findings, based on in-depth interviews with key informants from 13 SMEs, suggest that there is no predefined transition process for service infusion in SMEs, which seldom have the resources to build new organizational units or create new specialties. Instead, they differentiate themselves through new value constellations within business networks. The heterogeneity of service offerings and business networks means those value constellations take many forms.
  • Vaara, Eero; Monin, Philippe (Institute for Operations Research and Management Sciences, 2010)
    This paper challenges the predominant view that legitimation is merely a specific phase in merger or acquisition processes. We argue that a better understanding of postmerger organizational dynamics calls for conceptualization of discursive legitimation as an inherent part of unfolding merger processes. In particular, we focus on the recursive relationship between legitimation and organizational action. We have two objectives: to outline a theoretical model that helps one to understand the dynamics of discursive legitimation and organizational action in postmerger organizations, and to examine a revealing case to distinguish the inherent risks and problems in discursive legitimation. Our case analysis focuses on the merger between the French pharmaceutical companies BioMérieux and Pierre Fabre. We adopt a critical multimethod approach and distinguish specific discursive dynamics and pathological tendencies in this case. The analysis highlights the unintended consequences of discursive legitimation, the central role of sensegiving and sensehiding in discursive legitimation, the inherently political nature of legitimation and the risks associated with politicization, the special problems associated with fashionable discourses and the role of the media, the use of specific discursive strategies for legitimation and delegitimation, and the crucial role of actual integration results. This analysis adds to the existing research on mergers and acquisitions by treating discursive legitimation as part of the merger dynamics. In particular, our case analysis provides a new explanation for merger failure. We also believe that the recursive model connecting discursive legitimation and delegitimation strategies to concrete organizational action makes a more general contribution to our understanding of organizational legitimation.
  • Vaara, Eero; Monin, Philippe (Organizational Science, pp. 1–20, 2008)
    This paper challenges the predominant view that legitimation is merely a specific phase in merger or acquisition processes. We argue that a better understanding of postmerger organizational dynamics calls for conceptualization of discursive legitimation as an inherent part of unfolding merger processes. In particular, we focus on the recursive relationship between legitimation and organizational action. We have two objectives: to outline a theoretical model that helps one to understand the dynamics of discursive legitimation and organizational action in postmerger organizations, and to examine a revealing case to distinguish the inherent risks and problems in discursive legitimation. Our case analysis focuses on the merger between the French pharmaceutical companies BioMérieux and Pierre Fabre. We adopt a critical multimethod approach and distinguish specific discursive dynamics and pathological tendencies in this case. The analysis highlights the unintended consequences of discursive legitimation, the central role of sensegiving and sensehiding in discursive legitimation, the inherently political nature of legitimation and the risks associated with politicization, the special problems associated with fashionable discourses and the role of the media, the use of specific discursive strategies for legitimation and delegitimation, and the crucial role of actual integration results. This analysis adds to the existing research on mergers and acquisitions by treating discursive legitimation as part of the merger dynamics. In particular, our case analysis provides a new explanation for merger failure. We also believe that the recursive model connecting discursive legitimation and delegitimation strategies to concrete organizational action makes a more general contribution to our understanding of organizational legitimation.
  • Vaara, Eero; Junni, Paulina; Sarala, Riikka M; Ehrnrooth, Mats; Koveshnikov, Alexei (Hanken School of Economics, 2013)
    This paper focuses on managers’ attributions of M&A performance. Our analysis indicates that there is a linear association between performance and attributions to cultural differences, which is moderated by prior experience. Furthermore, our results suggest that there is a curvilinear association between performance and attributions to managers’ actions, but we found no support for the moderating effect of experience for this association. By substantiating these attributional tendencies, our results contribute to research on M&As and studies on attribution more generally. In particular, our study helps to put cultural differences in perspective and cautions researchers and practitioners alike to avoid simplistic explanations of M&A performance.
  • Tienari, Janne; Vaara, Eero; Meriläinen, Susan (Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2010)
    Purpose We address gender and management in contemporary globalization by focusing on the ways in which male top managers in a multinational corporation (MNC) construct their identities in interviews with researchers. Design/methodology/approach Our qualitative analysis is based on interviews with virtually all top managers in the Nordic financial services company Nordea (53 men and two women). Findings We specify how becoming international induces a particular masculine identity for the top managers. In becoming international, however, their national identification persists. The unstability of the MNC as a political constellation leaves room for questioning the transnational identity offered. Originality/value Our findings suggest that in the global world of business, national identity can also be interpreted as something positive and productive, contrary to how it has been previously treated in feminist and men’s studies literature.