Archive for May, 2015

Online Education at Pillar College

May 31, 2015

Benefits of Creating an Online Degree Program in Higher Education

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Introduction

(A summary of Haythornthwaite, C. A., & Kazmer, M. M. (2004). Online education culture and learning: Research and practice. New York: P. Lang )

Online learning otherwise referred to as E-learning is currently the in thing in the 21st century. It has altered dramatically and transformed how we viewed attending classes in the past. It involves a student attending his or her classes from the comfort of their home without physically being there for class. It integrates the use of the internet and computer technology in the delivery of lessons by teachers to the students. A research conducted by an organization for the Education Department showed that in a tested performance, the students engaged in online lessons would grade in around 59th percentile in comparison to the normal student attending regular classes who would rank in 50th percentile. This for sure tells that online learning is headed places, and it is the future.

People who are already in the working environment and cannot attend regular classes are considered in these programs; the beauty of online learning is that you can have your lessons anywhere! The selling point of these programs is that they charge cheaper compared to regular classes and they take a shorter duration of time to complete. A course that would take four years to complete in a regular class takes only three years on maximum to complete. It is also a lifesaver to the international student as he can attend classes even without flying to the host country. A study conducted by an organization for the Education Department brought interesting findings; it showed that online learning could be more suitable than the conventional classes. Initially, we viewed the online lessons as better to nothing but now it is competing with the normal classes to rank as a much better choice.

Reasons to Consider Online Learning

(A summary of Goldstein, L. (2005). A Guide to College & University Budgeting. Foundations for Institutional Effectiveness. Publisher: N.A.C.U. Business Officers.)

Online programs have numerous advantages the list is endless. In this paper, I will lay my focus on some of the reasons that our institution has to take to mind as we consider offering these programs. So why should we offer online programs?

Flexibility: Students faces two major hurdles in their quest for more knowledge time factor and the location issue. Online learning tackles both of these hence making learning convenient for everyone. One can study at their own time when they feel that they are free. In conventional classes, we have fixed timetables whereby one has to be there at a specific time or else miss the lessons. Due to our busy schedules at times, it is impossible to make it to some classes. In online programs, students have the leisure of studying at the times that they want. You could study at five in the morning, at midnight…whenever you feel like it. This option is very friendly especially in companies and to those people who are working and are only seeking to further their studies. They can choose only to study for two hours in the evening or at their own free time over break hour and lunch hour. This is economical for the companies that want to upgrade the skills of some of their employees, as they do not have to let go of them. This means no loss for the company as they go about upgrading their employees and letting them further their skills, this is a plus for them. The program is open to adjustments hence tailored to fit into anyone’s busy schedule (Howard etl, 2012).

Accessibility: Online lessons also tackle the issue of location. One does not have to attend the actual classes as you can access the educational resources from virtually any place one is, provided one has a connection to the internet and a gadget such as a tablet, Smartphone or a laptop. Our institution will not only rely on our domestic market here but also on overseas students, students in our neighboring countries, neighbor states and even those in other continents. This is a great way to attract international students and people based in far away locations. It is also appealing and convenient to companies and that working person who wants to further their education. This is because they do not have to incur transportation costs to the place of study, and it does not strain them. This hence opens a new market for us as an institution. Online programs also open doors to lots of resources for the student. There are many resources online including books, journals, videos etcetera. Bringing all this to the doorstep of the student without breaking a sweat makes the program appealing to the busy student (Stephenson, 2001).

Increased Student-Student and Student-Instructor Interaction: Online learning has a component that enables them to enhance communication. They integrate chat applications and messenger clients that enable communication, which may be between the student and another student, student, and a teacher or the administration at large. This is particularly helpful to the student who is shy and finds it hard to approach a fellow student or the lecturer with a question. With online learning, one does not have to trace someone physically to ask a question as it is made easy all you have to do is inbox your query. The second party then replies at their own time making it convenient compared to the conventional methods. This hence appeals to some people and, therefore, taps a new market for us. Synergy is also highly encouraged as there is a dynamic interaction between the students and their instructor, ideas, information and resources with a smooth flow. Discussions among the different parties greatly contribute to this synergy.

The discussions in online platforms are of high quality. This is because it gives a student time to ponder on the comments and contributions of other students before making a comment of their own. A student can review previous contributions and hence it gives time for digestion of information and people can easily correct each other. In conventional learning methods it does not give a student to analyze and digest information before contributing, it also does not allow for future references. This allows the student to participate actively and contribute to the class discussions as well as absorb a cocktail of information contributed by other students. The online platform also allows for some level of anonymity. This will shield the students from any forms of discrimination be it gender-based discrimination, age-based discrimination, disability-related or racial. This shall be appealing to the market we have not tapped into yet (Bender, 2012).

Competitiveness: many of the big names already offer online classes. Included in this category are the likes of Harvard and Oregon State, us following suit makes us appealing to the person who follows names of prestige. This makes us relevant to the market and gives us a competitive edge as we receive recognition and earn our space among the giants in terms of education provision. With this, we have an advantage over those institutions that have not yet integrated online programs in their curriculum. With this competitive edge, I believe we shall plow in more revenue.

Expansion: Online learning programs are a form of expansion for our institution. It is an expansion worth far much less than the normal expansion process. If we were to expand our services to nearby towns, nearby states or even overseas countries we would have to invest in sending a team to the ground to assess the area, invest in setting up facilities and buildings, paying rents and rates among other costs. In our view, online learning expands our market to far towns, the student in the remote places of our state, students from neighboring states, a busy working person and international market at large with less money. In growing our market base, we are sure going to get more revenues and in the process spend less. This will guarantee us profits in the end (Stephenson, 2001).

Appealing to today’s business environment: Today, most companies and organizations have expanded their operations. We find workers in different locations, different states, and even continents. Online would be the way forward if the organizations wanted to upgrade the skills of the workers. Take the example of Coca-Cola Company; the company is located in almost every nation around the world. If the company wanted to upgrade the skills of its marketing department, for example, it would be tedious and much expensive process to put all the workers in conventional classes. It would also lead to the workers having different skills, as the education may not be uniform in the different countries and schools around the world. If the company wanted to find a cheaper and effective method, they would turn to online lessons. This is because enrolling their workers in online classes in one institution ensures that there is uniformity in the skills imparted to the workers. It is also easy to track the progress of the students and, in the long run, saves the company money. In our case, it would mean one new client to our books who would come with hundreds of thousands of potential students along. This can be a major achievement to our institution and a big step forward (Finkelstein, 2006).

Conclusion

Online marketing is the way forward; it opens new opportunities and markets we have never looked into before. There is a bright future that prevails for those who embrace the change in society. As the old saying goes, ‘the client is always right’. We have to bend according to their wishes to attract them. I recommend that we embrace online learning to soar to our potential.

Work Cited

Bender, T. (2012). Online teaching enhancing student learning. Sterling, VA: Stylys.

Finkelstein, J. (2006).Synchronous teaching and online learning. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, A John Wiley & Sons Imprint.

Goldstein, L. (2005). A Guide to College & University Budgeting. Foundations for Institutional Effectiveness. National Association of College & University Business Officers.

Haythornthwaite, C. A., & Kazmer, M. M. (2004). Online education culture and learning: Research and practice. New York: P. Lang.

Ko, S. S., & Rossen, S. (2010). Teaching online: A practical guide. New York: Routledge.

Stephenson, J. (2001). Teaching & learning online. London: Kogan Page.

Howard, C., Schenk, K., & Discenza, R. (2012). Distance learning and university effectiveness: Changing educational paradigms for online learning. Hershey, PA: Information Science Pub.

URBAN DEVELOPMENT

May 28, 2015

Introduction

The metropolitan setting is highly complex. In recent years, public strategies have been targeted at eliminating slums, minus taking into consideration the possibility of their dwellers to find solutions to the actual complications that slums supposedly create. Particularly, in the modern-day era of globalisation, it is imperative to emphasize the resources that urban settlements can provide the disorderly metropolitan. This necessitates a reconsideration of understandings on development. Supportable urban growth will only be conceivable when there is a concentration on resolving the challenges of the bulk of urban peoples in techniques that utilize their inventiveness and engage them in the making of resolutions.

In relation to a whole array of resources, natural and artificial pointers on developing nations, three-dimensional and demographic metropolitan growth involve the worsening of physical, financial and communal living environments for a big and growing part of the metropolitan populace. In this background, this paper explores the conflicts between housing- associated activities, social instruments and public procedures, in addition to the necessity to define justifiable solutions that encourage the well- being of the majority of urban inhabitants.

It is on this basis; local, domestic and global policies have progressively developed from oppressive tactics aiming to eliminate slums and manage the ‘unwanted inhabitants’ to an integrating opinion of the urban inhabitants. From this position, in its responsibility as organiser, the government offers amenities and acts as a controller of procedures and activities in the urban scope. The plan has led to improved statute, communal infrastructure and amenities. However, it has resulted to increased corruption and has compelled the poor to convert to small businesses and become accountable for their survivals. However anticipated some features of this evolution may be, it implies that the mainstream of the urban underprivileged is still surviving in highly susceptible conditions.

In a setting of globalisation of financial and political freedom, the consequence of such programmes has been the destitution of poorer segments of the populace, the explosive increase in the quantity and dimension of towns, and ever more multifaceted and exorbitant complications that need to be resolved. The ground-breaking solutions recommended are too often untenable, and there is an obvious inability to go past conventional planning and administrative tactics. This is despite the extensive acknowledgement that determining the city challenge in the undeveloped countries is critical (De Filippi 2009).

The growth of slums in emerging nations is a creation of 20th- and 21st- century urban development and signifies the very principle of the Third World metropolitan. Efforts have been implemented to eradicate slums, but they have virtually failed since they do not explore the urban concept that creates the slum to start with. In the examination of these roots, the paper recommends a three-track tactic that needs taking into consideration nationals’ demands and requirements; assessing the available materials; and, ultimately, applying urban control in a way that nurtures collective benefits. To continue in this direction, it is essential to endorse a participatory style in both communal and administrative terms, adjusted to the particular spatial and communal setting of respective metropolitans. The slum is categorised by the dangerous nature of its environment. Nonetheless, it can sincerely be understood as a setting of cultural inventiveness, economic creation and communal revolution. Definitive urban organization principles are based on comprehensive preparation concerning land distribution, infrastructural administration, and resolutions on technical facilities and systems. In the slums, though, this technocratic method is challenged by the social activities of persons, households and social assemblies, predominantly the deprived ones. These dwellers choose to their own emergency resolutions to urban assimilation difficulties, and they do so at the root level at which these complications are modelled – normally the parcel of land, the family, and lastly the district. In the majority of cases the outcome is an individual or household construction on a parcel of land that is engaged either unlawfully or by casual agreement, without being associated with the routine services. While poor citizens identify the significance of infrastructures and city services for their survival, they do not regard them a minimum obligation to move in.

The topic of land possession is one of the important issues concerning slums in developing nations. In numerous poor regions of the city, a majority of the populace do not possess the land on which they have constructed their houses. In particular cases, ordinary types of land possession still occur, and the parcel is apportioned to a household by the local society. On exceptional occasions, this resolution is lawfully recognised by the government. Commonly though, land habitation is deliberately ignored in support of prevailing governmental, commercial and supervisory measures, often on the basis of the Western regulation enacted during the colonial years.

It has been projected that from 25 to 70 per cent of city residents in the Third World nations live in slums (World Bank 2009). Reliable land tenure is, therefore, one of the main difficulties facing root-level and state authorities in these republics. According to the United Nations, safe land tenure is a crucial element for the incorporation of the urban underprivileged, as is their acknowledgement by the state authorities. It can similarly inspire families to participate in the promotion of their parcels and expand their usage. This offers them shield against possible expulsions and gives them an advantage that may work as a pledge in particular markets.

Land possession is not obviously the only problem that concerns the poor inhabitants of the towns: availability of communal services and structures is an essential part of all city incorporation strategies. The underprivileged are poor since they also experience challenges accessing city facilities; furthermore, when they ultimately get this right its price is correspondingly greater compared to other city groups. Resulting from the recent assessment of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme and Cities Alliance (2006), availability of clean water and to wastewater management amenities has increased over the past decade. But while the condition in urban regions have improved than in the villages, the challenges are by and large comparable: communal amenities and major structures are insufficient, the socio-spatial sharing of facilities is discriminatory, public-private conglomerates are functional in an illogical method, governmental and economic administration is poor, and preservation is inefficient.

The slum topic is not negligible to urban growth – it is at the exact centre. Urban development happens mainly in developing nations whereby populaces move from the countryside to urban areas at a very rapid rate. As per Nath(2007), approximately 923,986,000 individuals, or 34% of the globe’s entire city population, reside in slums; about 44% of the urban populace of all emerging areas joint reside in slums; approximately 79% of the city populace in the Third World nations reside in slums; roughly 5% of the city residents in developed areas reside in slum-like circumstances. The aggregate number of slum residents in the globe augmented by around 35 percent throughout the 1990s, besides in the following three decades the global total of slum tenants will rise to around two billion if no determined action to resolve the difficulty of slums is initiated.

In both regional and demographic relations, the globe is increasingly becoming urbanized. This course now impacts nearly all the developing nations in the world. The speed of urban development in several nations in the South remains to be great, and customarily leads to a grave decline in living situations for most city residents. The statistics quoted in the UN study indicate a lot: conditional on the phase of poverty in every nation, every two to three city residents out of five reside in slums, with substantial implications for their own existence and the existence of imminent generations: risky environments for them, uncertainty for their descendants.

The scope of the city-rule change is more observable if viewed at in historical viewpoint. In 1800, a measly four percent of the globe’s population resided in an urban setting, a percentage that increased to 15 percent a century later and to 30 percent in five decades. In 2000, 46 percent, that is, nearly half of the nearly 7 billion residents of the globe were city inhabitants. Universally, this percentage is probable to hit 60 percent come 2030, owing mainly to urbanisation in the developing nations. This tendency goes in tandem with an increase in city centres to above one million dwellers. Global, there were 11 such metropolises in 1900, 83 five decades later, and 411 in 2000. However, come 2003 the UNPD ascertained that a mainstream of the present three billion metropolitan inhabitants – who will reach five billion come 2030 – continue to reside in small city groups. In the emerging nations, 15 percent of the populace reside in regions of above five million occupants, 25 percent in a city of between one to five million, 9.5 percent in an accumulation of half to one million dwellers, and 51.5 percent in cities of below 500,000 occupants (Prasad 2003).

The risky situations in the developing republics ought to not obscure the point that poverty, ecological decline and social discrimination are by no ways only to be encountered in the lowliest nations on the globe. Such an opinion would ignore major features of urban account, and socio-spatial inequalities that even currently make Western metropolises endure poverty regions. Using domestic waste as an instance, United Nations Human Settlements Programme and Cities Alliance (2006) indicated that from the 12th to the 19th centuries unhygienic situations prevailed in the capital of France minus triggered a specific uproar among the residents.

City poverty in the developed nations is not only an ancient fact – irrefutably, it remains in existence. A research in the Monde Diplomatique World Bank(2009) educated book lovers that the Portuguese administration had just introduced a special transfer scheme, reserved at more than one billion dollars, whereby 150,000 individuals residing in slums between two towns were to relocate to more satisfactory accommodation. Even though as indicated by United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (2008), a majority of slum-inhabitants live in the urban groups of developing states, it is projected that seven percent of city inhabitants in the wealthy nations live under exceptionally perilous environments, while public spending for sponsored housing and town restoration is escalating downward. Additional deficiencies and even more perilous living circumstances may be dreaded as a result.

Evidently, it obvious that irrespective of the metropolitan or section of the globe, poverty and perilous surroundings is closely associated. The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (2007) has established this in Europe via its researches and city poverty pointers: a concentration of poor families, over-population, and an absence of elementary material luxuries, regional localisation, poor conveyance linkages and availability of urban facilities. Researches carried out in Canada throughout the1990s also establish a relationship between poverty and city occurrences. Poverty augmented substantially between 1990 and 1995, increasing from 4.3 to 5.6 million individuals, predominantly in urban regions. A majority of destitute citizens reside in the metropolitan centres, in which the leading economic undertakings are focussed. This is owing to the categories of accommodation they get admission to, and to the services offered by the closeness of public amenities. Singh(2006) approximates that in France roughly one million families are ineffectively housed, or are not housed completely.

Conclusion

While the recognized discourse rotates around the mitigation of poverty and social discrepancies, financing for sponsored houses is being reduced. The practices of social seclusion and spatial disintegration best clarify these improvements, and they are generally appropriate. The fact is that the inclination towards prejudiced and prejudiced urbanisation is found universally, in both wealthy nations and developing ones.

References List

Davis, M 2007, Planet of slums. London, Verso.

De Filippi, F 2009, Slum[e]scape: a challenge for sustainable development projects : echoes from the XXIII UIA Congress of architecture, Torino 2008. Firenze, Alinea.

Earthscan, 2010, State of the world’s cities 2010/2011 bridging the urban divide. London. http://public.eblib.com/choice/publicfullrecord.aspx?p=517195.

Nath, V 2007, Urbanization, urban development and metropolitan cities in India. New Delhi, Concept Publ.

Prasad, B 2003, Urban development: a new perspective. New Delhi, Sarup & Sons.

Singh, R B 2006, Sustainable urban development. New Delhi, Concept Pub. Co.

United Nations Centre For Human Settlements2008, The state of the world’s cities 2008 / harmonious cities. London, Earthscan.

United Nations Human Settlements Programme, & Cities Alliance 2006, Analytical perspective of pro-poor slum upgrading frameworks. Nairobi, Kenya, United Nations Human Settlements Programme. http://www.unchs.org/pmss/getPage.asp?page=bookView&book=2291.

United Nations Human Settlements Programme 2007, Enhancing urban safety and security global report on human settlements 2007. London, Earthscan.

World Bank 2009, Reshaping economic geography. Washington (D.C.).

Islamic Resurgence

May 28, 2015

Introduction

The revival of Islam in recent times has been construed as causing a great challenge to the status quo. Islamic resurgence is based on the premise that Muslims have to return to their basic fundamental faith. However, the resurgence of Islam has had different connotations, with some definitions claiming that it is associated with extremist, fanaticism and anti-American ideologies. In essence, Islamic resurgence has been experienced on a global level, and has not been limited to countries that esteem Islam. The resurgence of Islam dates back to the 1970s and has affected the spread of western ideologies in Islamic states.

How Islamic resurgence and its religious knowledge contradicts western norms

The re-emergence of fundamental Islamic thought has emerged as a reaction to western colonialism. Additionally, the resurgence has been precipitated by the search for the restoration of Islamic pre-eminence particularly in Islamic states. Therefore, Islamic resurgence contradicts western ideologies, specifically in regard to the hegemony of the west. Since the onset of globalisation, the west has dominated the world agenda, and the onset of Islamic resurgence in the 1970s has been viewed as a threat (Hamid 21). The countervailing impact of Islamic resurgence upon the hegemony of the west is a point in case. The new world order, as advanced by the west, desires to create a political democracy and an international law that are secular. The resurgence of Islam contravenes this establishment, by proposing Islamic states to observe the basic ideologies of Islam.

By creating a world order defined by the United Nations, Islamic states desired to counter the hegemony of the world superpowers by having their own believe systems based on the Quran. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the fall of international communism offered the west an opportunity to establish the new world order. However, the Islamic world, through Islamic resurgence has assumed the role of the bogeyman, and thus compromised the efforts of the west (Voll 43).

The ideology of the global village has been coined by the west to create hegemony. Muslims have however found a way out of this through Islamic resurgence, and formed a sense of distinctiveness from the western world (Mehden 61). From the above illustration therefore, the Muslim world has refused to identify itself with neo-imperialist policies and have rather reaffirmed its religious beliefs and practices. Consequently, the conflict between the west and the Islamic world has been quite visible.

Before 1970, Islamic resurgence was a prominent theme, although it had not been implemented. As early as 1945 when the domination of the west was at the peak, Muslims such as Abu Hurairah and Abu Dawud had predicted the success of the movement (Kramer 113). The Muslims had indicated that Allah would raise his people through reviving its religion. In response to this prediction, a number of revivalists emerged and offered the renewed interpretation of Shariah laws. The revivalists focused on interpreting the Quran and the Sunnah in relation to existing conditions.

The Islamic resurgence of the present age has been viewed as a reaction against the imperialism of the west. From the surface, the colonial legacy of the west left deep scars in the relationship between the Muslims and the west. The Islamic resurgence is therefore a product of Muslims feeling a sense of inferiority complex. Even at the end of colonialism; challenges that existed between the west and the Muslim world were never resolved. Instead, a feeling of inferiority complex persisted, because the Muslims continued to depend upon the technologically superior west (Hamid 21).

From this analysis, it seems apparent that Islamic resurgence was necessitated by the hardships that Muslims experienced due to the domination of the west in world matters. Most of the alliances that existed before the resurgence were tilted to the advantage of non-Muslims superpowers. In the economic sphere, for instance, operations of western entities such as the World Bank and the international monetary fund were tilted in favour of non-Muslims. Muslim governments that abided by the requirements of these economic entities were trapped into never ending cycles of debt payment (Hamid 21). Even then, the structural adjustment programs proclaimed by the Briton institutions were very unfriendly to a common citizen within Muslim countries.

The current Islamic resurgence has been associated with deep condemnation of the hegemony of western powers. Moreover, post-colonial Muslim states which lean towards western ideologies have received equal condemnation. These condemnations centre on aspects such as the failure of Muslim states to receive the desired economic benefits of western hegemony. Additionally, condemnations have focused on the deliberate move by the west to disfigure Muslim culture (Tamimi 47). The Islamic resurgence in this regard revolts against the persistent subordination of Muslims by the west and their proxies.

The Islamic resurgence desired to have full independence from western influence by revolting against the international order that had been created by the west. The failure of western polices to offer equal advantage to Muslims in regard to wealth signified that Muslim states would remain economically backward. Additionally, the economic hardship that was being experienced by all Muslims made them to coalesce under a common umbrella, which they believed could press for their interests. The ideology of social justice was quite appealing to Muslims, because it helped them to release their frustrations about the unfulfilled expectations of the western hegemony (Haddad and Esposito 58). This suggests that the Islamic resurgence could not have emerged had the pro-western policies been able to achieve the desired reward.

Islamic resurgence came at an appropriate time, with the emergence of the oil boom of the 1970s. Most oil fields were located in Islamic states and by monopolising oil trade; Islamic states could effectively battle western ideologies. Associated with the Islamic resurgence were the OPEC oil prices, which exhibited the ability of Muslim states to control the affairs of the world (Abu-Rabi’ 55). For instance, Islamic nations such as Libya, Iran and Saudi Arabia used their financial resources derived from oil wealth to promote the ideology of Islamic resurgence. For the first time in history, the enormous oil resources were used to promote Islamic activism, which gained the attention of the west. Islam gained new confidence, and this generated new knowledge, which was used to highlight on the plight of Islam. For example, Muslims effectively used the media in order to highlight on the suppression that the Muslim world was going through.

Modernity was viewed as a threat to Islam. The Islamic resurgence was visualised as a manifestation of Muslim reaction to modernity. In fact, modernity was envisaged by Muslims as a ‘crisis’ (Watt 18). This was based on the understanding that the onset of modernity would be accompanied by secularism and the decline of religion. Muslims, therefore, made an effort to create their own identity, which would protect their religion. Against all odds, Muslims are not opposed to western technology. Islamic resurgence has only taken advantage of these technologies to strengthen their cause. New knowledge generated by the west has therefore been used at their disadvantage. In particular, information technology has been used to spread Islamic propaganda messages.

As illustrated, Islamic resurgence has been focusing on strategies that can be used to prevent modernity from infiltrating into Islam. Modernisation has been associated with crime, immorality, divorce and sexual freedom. Values of Islam are opposed of these vices, and the advent of Islamic resurgence has been viewed as the best strategy to overcome these societal ills. Furthermore, aspects such as individualism, which are highly emphasised in the western ideologies, have been viewed as contradicting the communal livelihood of Muslims (Ball 11). The Islamic resurgence in part protects these values. In this regard, the new world order proclaimed by the west became contradicted by the Islamic social order, in which the man-to man relationship rather than individualism is highly esteemed.

Western thoughts acknowledge the separation of the state and religion. This is quite contrary to Islam, in which religion is never a separate entity from political, social, economic and cultural factors. The Islamic resurgence considers all aspects of life as being governed by Islam. The contradiction between Islamic ideologies and western thinking can also be envisaged in an attempt by the west to fight the Islamic resurgence. For example, the west published amateur works which depicted Islamic resurgence as a monolithic movement. These assertions were viewed negatively by the Muslim world, considering that Muslims expected the west to consider making the playing field to be equal to ensure that both Muslims and non-Muslims enjoy their rights (Bashier 63).

Noticeably, the intellectual paradigm that the west bases its arguments upon is faulty according to the Islamic resurgence. Muslims acknowledge that the west does not consider them as equal partners in the affairs of the world, but rather as subordinates. The emergence of Islamic resurgence has come as a necessity, in order to depart from the new world order that serves the western colonial interests. The fundamental ideologies of Islam have been focusing on revolting against the social, economic and political exploitation of the west (Tibi 31). In regard to this, a number of schools of thoughts have emerged, which are meant to protect Islamic ideologies. For instance, the Confucian Islamic world has been particular in defending the interests of Islam, thanks to the Islamic resurgence.

Defining Islamic resurgence has been a matter of great controversy, considering that some western thinkers have viewed it negatively. The limited definition of the concept to encompass aspects of terrorism has not been forthcoming, and has created animosity between Muslims and the west. Therefore, western conventional wisdom cannot define the concept. By defining the concept as strictly political also deviates from its main purpose. The west fails to capture the fact that just like the new world order, Islamic resurgence is a universal concept that defends the religious, political and cultural aspects of Muslims in the midst of western ideologies (Voll, Revivalism and Social Transformations in Islamic History 171). The western world has actually failed to recognise this concept because of the secular revolutions that are emerging in the global world. The aspect of resurgence signifies that there exists an effort to revive certain aspects of Islam which existed, but have been diluted by the onset of western domination. In essence, the current efforts are geared towards revitalizing the 20th century Islamic laws, which made the religion to be quite distinct. Consequently, Islamic resurgence has achieved greater benefits as exhibited in the number of high profile status of Islam in the global world. Additionally, the lives of common Muslims have improved immensely.

Conclusion

The religious knowledge associated with the Islamic resurgence contradicts western norms. The establishment of the new world order by the west created capitalistic and individualistic ideologies, which contradicted Islamic values. The social order established by the Islamic resurgence was opposed to the secular values that were esteemed by the west. Moreover; opposition to the western norms became a necessity due to the failure of globalisation to create an equal economic, social and political environment for both Muslims and non-Muslims. Furthermore, the oil boom in Islamic countries helped to increase the confidence of Muslims. This made them to use new knowledge such as information technology in order to highlight on the human right oppressions that Muslims experienced. The Islamic resurgence in this sense was a powerful force, which coalesced Muslims into a common entity to fight for recognition. An attempt by the west to fight the Islamic resurgence was an indication that its ideology was against western norms. From the illustration, however, it seems apparent that the contradiction between Islamic resurgence and the west could easily have been leveraged if the economic desires of Muslims could have been taken care of. Nevertheless, conflicts between the western ideology and Islamic resurgence was driven a notch higher when the latter used oil prices to seek attention from its adversary, the west.

Works Cited

Abu-Rabi’, Ibrahim M. Intellectual Origins of Islamic Resurgence in the Modern Arab World. New York: SUNY Press, 1996.

Anu. Islamic Resurgence: a Definition. 2011. 31 October 2014 <http://press.anu.edu.au/islamic/quest/mobile_devices/ch01s03.html&gt;.

Ball. Islamic Resurgence in the Middle East. 1994. 31 October 2014 <http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a283035.pdf&gt;.

Bashier, Zakaria. Sunshine at Madinah. The Islamic Foundation: Leicester, 1990.

Haddad, Yvonne Yazbeck and John L. Esposito. The Contemporary Islamic Revival: A Critical Survey and Bibliography. New York: Greenwood Publishing Group, 1991.

Hamid, Abdul. “Islamic Resurgence: An Overview of Causal Factors: A review of “Ummatic” Linkages.” IKIM Journal 9.1 (2001): 16-46.

Kramer, Martin Seth. Arab Awakening and Islamic Revival: The Politics of Ideas in the Middle East. New York: Transaction Publishers, 2011.

Mehden, Von der. Two Worlds of Islam: Interaction between Southeast Asia and the Middle East. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1993.

Tamimi, Azam. “‘Fundamentalist Islam and the Media.” The Balance 2.1 (1996): 45-52.

Tibi. “The Iranian Revolution and the Arabs: The Quest for Islamic Identity and the Search for an Islamic System of Government.” Arab Studies Quarterly 8.1 (1986): 29-44.

Voll. “‘Renewal and Reform in Islamic History.” Voices of Resurgent Islam 3 (1983): 32-47.

—. “Revivalism and Social Transformations in Islamic History.” The Muslim World LXXVI.3 (1986): 168-180.

Watt. Islamic Fundamentalism and Modernity. London: Routledge, 1988.

Database Systems

May 28, 2015

Part A

For the police custody system, the identifiable spatial and non-spatial entities include;

Crime, Reporter, Witness, Offender, Victim, Police, Detective, Location (city and district are derived entities from location) and Address

Assumptions

  • That the reporter of the crime is not necessarily the witness
  • That a district is a larger division than a city
  • That a crime is recorded by a police and investigated by a detective

The table below summarizes the entities and their relationship

Entity name Description Relationship with other entities
Crime This is the offense Belongs to a type, affects a victim,
Reporter A citizen who reports the crime Has address,
Offender The person who commits crime Has address, commits a crime, offends
Police That who records the crime Records crime notes
Victim That who is affected by the crime Has address
Witness That who witnesses a crime Witnesses a crime, has address
Detective The police who investigates a crime Investigates
Address Address Has a district
District A region Has a city
City A city
Type

N/B: the attributes names have been shortened for easier labeling of the E-R diagram.

For example crime_id is shown as c_id, district is shown as dist and offender_id is shown as o_id. Foreign key, which creates the relationship of entities, are shown on the relationship. Primary key attributes are underlined.

ER1

ER2
Part B

The relational schema is shown below. Normalization has been shown

1NF

Crime (crime_id, district,city,date,object,crime_notes,reporter,city,district, address,victim_id,reporter_id,police_id,detective_id.witness_id,offender_id)

Reporter (reporter_id, NRIC_No,names,phone, address,postal_code,city,district)

Offender (offender_id, NRIC_No,names,phone,age,gender, address,postal_codecity,district)

Police (police_id,police_registratin_number,name)

Victim (victim_id, NRIC_No,names,phone,age,gender, address,postal_codecity,district)

Witness (witness_id, NRIC_No,names,phone, address,postal_codecity,district)

Detective (d_id,reg_number,name)

2NF

Crime (crime_id, district,city, date,object,crime_notes,reporter,,victim_id,reporter_id,police_id,detective_id,witness_id,offender_id)

Reporter (reporter_id, NRIC_No, f_name,l_name,phone, address)

Offender (offender_id, NRIC_No, f_name,l_name,phone,age,gender, address)

Police (police_id,police_registratin_number, , f_name,l_name)

Victim (victim_id, NRIC_No,f_name,l_name,phone,age,gender, address)

Witness (witness_id, NRIC_No,f_name,l_name,phone, address)

Detective (d_id,reg_number, f_name,l_name)

Address (address_id,address,postal_code,city,district)

3NF

Crime (crime_id, date,object, crime_notes,reporter,victim_id,reporter_id,police_id,detective_id,witness_id,offender_id,city_id)

Reporter (reporter_id, NRIC_No, f_name,l_name,phone, address_id)

Offender (offender_id, NRIC_No, f_name,l_name,phone,age,gender, address_id)

Police (police_id, NRIC_No,police_registratin_number, , f_name,l_name)

Victim (victim_id, NRIC_No, f_name,l_name,phone,age,gender, address_id)

Witness (witness_id, NRIC_No,f_name,l_name,phone, address_id)

Detective (d_id,reg_number, f_name,l_name)

Address (address_id,address,postal_code,city_id)

City(city_id,name,district_id)

District (district_id,name)

The relations have been elaborated in the table below

Crime (crime_id, date,object, crime_notes,reporter, victim_id,reporter_id, police_id, detective_id, witness_id,offender_id,city_id,date_resolved,status)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
pk Crime_id NOT NULL integer
Date NOT NULL DATE
object NULL VARCHAR2(64)
Crime_notes NOT NULL Integer
fk Reporter_id NOT NULL Integer
Fk Police_id NOT NULL Integer
fk victim_id NOT NULL Integer
Fk Detective_id NOT NULL Integer
Fk Witness_id NOT NULL Integer
Fk Offender_id NOT NULL Integer
Fk City_id NOT NULL integer
Date_resolved NULL DATE
status NOT NULL VARCHAR2 (6)

Reporter (reporter_id, f_name,l_name,phone, address_id)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
Pk Reporter_id NOT NULL Integer
Pk NRIC_No NOT NULL Integer
F_name NOT NULL Varchar2(32)
L_name NOT NULL Varchar2(32)
Phone NOT NULL Varchar2(15)
Fk Address_id NOT NULL Integer

Offender (offender_id, f_name,l_name,phone,age,gender, address_id)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
Pk Offender_id Not NULL Integer
Pk NRIC_No NOT NULL Integer
F_name Not NULL Varchar2(32)
L_name Not NULL Varchar2(32)
Phone Not NULL Varchar2(15)
Age Not NULL Integer
Gender Not NULL Varchar2(6)
Fk Address_id Not NULL Integer

Police (police_id,police_registratin_number,name)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
pk Police_id Not NULL Integer
pk Police_reg_number Not NULL Varcher2(10)
F_name Not NULL Varchar2(32)
L_name Not NULL Varchar2(32)

Victim (victim_id, f_name,l_name,phone,age,gender, address_id)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
Pk NRIC_No NOT NULL Integer
Fk Victim_id Not NULL Integer
F_name Not NULL Varchar2(32)
L_name Not NULL Varchar2(32)
Phone Not NULL Varchar2(15)
Age Not NULL Integer
Gender Not NULL Varchar2(6)
Fk Address_id Not NULL Integer

Witness (witness_id,f_name,l_name,phone, address_id)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
Pk Witness_id NOT NULL Integer
Pk NRIC_No NOT NULL Integer
F_name NOT NULL Varchar2(32)
L_name NOT NULL Varchar2(32)
phone NOT NULL Varchar2(15)
fk Address_id NOT NULL Integer

Detective (detective_id,reg_number, f_name,l_name)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
pk Detective_id Not NULL Integer
pk Detective_reg_number Not NULL Varchar2(10)
F_name Not NULL Varchar2(32)
L_name Not NULL Varchar2(32)

Address (address_id,address,postal_code,cit y_id)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
Pk Address_id Not NULL Integer
Address Not NULL Varchar2(32)
Postal_code Not NULL Integer
Fk City_id Not NULL Integer

City(city_id,name,district_id)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
Pk City_id Not NULL Integer
Name Not NULL Varchar2(32)
Fk District_id Not NULL Integer

District (district_id,name)

PK/FK Field name Null/Not NULL Data type
pk District_id NOT NULL Integer
Name NOT NULL Varchar232

The oracle sql schema is shown below

create table district (

district_id integer not null,

name varchar2(32) not null,

CONSTRAINT district_id_pk PRIMARY KEY (district_id)

);

create table city (

city_id integer not null,

name varchar2(32) not null,

district_id integer not null,

PRIMARY KEY (city_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_district_id FOREIGN KEY (district_id) REFERENCES district(district_id)

);

create table address (

address_id integer not null,

address varchar2(32) not null,

postal_code integer not null,

city_id integer not null,

PRIMARY KEY(address_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_city_id FOREIGN KEY (city_id) REFERENCES city(city_id)

);

create table detective(

detective_id integer not null,

detective_reg_numer varchar2(10) not null,

f_name varchar2(32) not null,

l_name varchar2(32) not null,

primary key(detective_id),

CONSTRAINT detective_uni UNIQUE (detective_reg_numer)

);

create table witness(

witness_id integer not null,

nric_no integer not null,

f_name varchar2(32) not null,

l_name varchar2(32) not null,

phone varchar2(15) not null,

address_id integer not null,

primary key(witness_id),

CONSTRAINT witness_uni UNIQUE (nric_no),

CONSTRAINT fk_address_id_w FOREIGN KEY (address_id) REFERENCES address(address_id)

);

create table victim(

victim_id integer not null,

nric_no integer not null,

f_name varchar2(32) not null,

l_name varchar2(32) not null,

phone varchar2(15) not null,

gender varchar2(6) not null,

age integer not null,

address_id integer not null,

primary key(victim_id),

CONSTRAINT victim_uni UNIQUE (nric_no),

CONSTRAINT fk_address_id_v FOREIGN KEY (address_id) REFERENCES address(address_id)

);

create table police(

police_id integer not null,

police_reg_no varchar2(10) not null,

f_name varchar2(32) not null,

l_name varchar2(32) not null,

CONSTRAINT police_uni UNIQUE (police_reg_no),

primary key(police_id)

);

create table offender(

offender_id integer not null,

nric_no integer not null,

f_name varchar2(32) not null,

l_name varchar2(32) not null,

phone varchar2(15) not null,

gender varchar2(6) not null,

age integer not null,

address_id integer not null,

primary key(offender_id),

CONSTRAINT offender_uni UNIQUE (nric_no),

CONSTRAINT fk_address_id_o FOREIGN KEY (address_id) REFERENCES address(address_id)

);

create table reporter(

reporter_id integer not null,

nric_no integer not null,

f_name varchar2(32) not null,

l_name varchar2(32) not null,

phone varchar2(15) not null,

address_id integer not null,

primary key(reporter_id),

CONSTRAINT reporter_uni UNIQUE (nric_no),

CONSTRAINT fk_address_id_r FOREIGN KEY (address_id) REFERENCES address(address_id)

);

create table crime(

crime_id integer not null,

o_date DATE not null,

object_used varchar2(26) not null,

crime_notes varchar2(256) not null,

reporter_id integer not null,

police_id integer not null,

detective_id integer not null,

witness_id integer not null,

offender_id integer not null,

city_id integer not null,

victim_id integer not null,

date_resolved DATE,

status varchar2(6) not null,

type_of_crime varchar2(10) not null,

primary key(crime_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_city_id_c FOREIGN KEY (city_id) REFERENCES city(city_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_offender_id FOREIGN KEY (offender_id) REFERENCES offender(offender_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_witness_id FOREIGN KEY (witness_id) REFERENCES witness(witness_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_detective_id FOREIGN KEY (detective_id) REFERENCES detective(detective_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_police_id FOREIGN KEY (police_id) REFERENCES police(police_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_reporter_id FOREIGN KEY (reporter_id) REFERENCES reporter(reporter_id),

CONSTRAINT fk_victim_id FOREIGN KEY (victim_id) REFERENCES victim(victim_id)

);

Part C:

The schema is populated as shown below. This is the test data

—district

insert into district

values(1,’Kota Kinabalu’);

insert into district

values(2,’Tawau’);

—city

insert into city

values(1,’Kota Kinabalu’,1);

insert into city

values(2,’ Kuantan’,1);

—address

insert into address

values (1, ‘post 345’,267,1);

insert into address

values (2, ‘post 25′,267,1);

—detective

insert into detective

values(1,’DCR1234′,’Denis’,’Dennis’);

insert into detective

values(2,’DCR1235′,’erick’,’erick’);

—witness

insert into witness

values (1,123456789012,’Wang’,’Wang’,0123456765,1);

—victim

insert into victim

values(1,098765432123,’Paul’,’Paul’,’012345676′,’male’,28,1);

insert into victim

values(2,0987654321549,’Lewis’,’Lewis’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

insert into victim

values(3,098755432154,’Wang’,’Wang’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

insert into victim

values(4,0987654321540,’Eliud’,’Wang’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

insert into victim

values(5,098765435154,’John’,’Close’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

insert into victim

values(6,0987654321541,’Scwaz’,’Nigger’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

insert into victim

values(7,098765432154,’Samson’,’Bible’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

insert into victim

values(8,098565432154,’Achahi’,’Dan’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

insert into victim

values(9,098705432154,’Van’,’Gaal’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

insert into victim

values(10,098761432154,’Jane’,’Marson’,’012345678′,’female’,19,1);

—police

insert into police

values(1,’PODEW345′,’Brian’,’Brian’);

—offender

insert into offender

values(1,465432123456,’Peter’,’peter’,’0123234567′,’male’,45,1);

insert into offender

values(2,565432123456,’Mercy’,’Victoria’,’0123234567′,’female’,45,1);

insert into offender

values(3,865432123456,’Peter’,’samuel’,’0123234567′,’male’,23,2);

insert into offender

values(4,065432123456,’Peter’,’Eliud’,’01267434567′,’male’,19,1);

insert into offender

values(5,165432123456,’Peter’,’peter’,’0123234567′,’male’,40,2);

insert into offender

values(6,665432123456,’Mercy’,’clear’,’0123834567′,’female’,23,1);

insert into offender

values(7,265432123456,’Peter’,’Steve’,’0123234567′,’male’,51,1);

insert into offender

values(8,765432123456,’Sos’,’John’,’0123214567′,’male’,15,2);

—repoter

insert into reporter

values (1,123456789012,’Derdus’,’Pros’,0123456765,1);

—crime

insert into crime

values(1,to_date(‘2014-1-10’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’Knife’,’The accused stubbed him with a knife’,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,to_date(‘2014-10-30’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’closed’,’Murder’);

insert into crime

values(2,to_date(‘2014-1-10’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’gun’,’The accused stubbed him with a knife’,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,”,’open’,’robbery’);

insert into crime

values(3,to_date(‘2014-1-10’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’Knife’,’The accused stubbed him with a knife’,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,”,’open’,’Murder’);

insert into crime values(4,to_date(‘2014-1-10’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’Knife’,’The accused stubbed him with a knife’,1,1,2,1,5,1,1,to_date(‘2014-10-30’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’closed’,’Murder’);

insert into crime

values(5,to_date(‘2014-1-10’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’gun’,’The accused stubbed him with a knife’,1,1,1,1,6,1,1,to_date(‘2014-10-30’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’closed’,’robbery’);

insert into crime

values(6,to_date(‘2014-1-10’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’Knife’,’The accused stubbed him with a knife’,1,1,1,1,4,1,1,to_date(‘2014-10-30’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’closed’,’Murder’);

insert into crime

values(7,to_date(‘2014-1-10’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’Knife’,’The accused stubbed him with a knife’,1,1,2,1,2,1,1,”,’open’,’Murder’);

insert into crime

values(8,to_date(‘2014-1-10’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’Knife’,’The accused stubbed him with a knife’,1,1,1,1,3,1,1,to_date(‘2014-10-30’, ‘yyyy-mm-dd’),’closed’,’Murder’);

Part D:

  1. The crimes would be related by type or location of occurrence
  2. based on type of crime , the sql query is

SELECT o_date, type_of_crime COUNT(DISTINCT type_of_crime) AS “type_of_crime”

FROM crime

GROUP BY type_of_crime;

  1. based on city of occurrence

SELECT o_date, type_of_crime COUNT(DISTINCT city_id) AS “city of occurrence ”

FROM crime

GROUP BY type_of_crime, o_date;

  1. select distinct crime.witness_id,crime.o_date,

offender.f_name,offender.l_name,police.f_name,police.l_name,

detective.f_name,detective.l_name,count(crime.witness_id)

from crime,offender,police,witness,detective

where (select distinct count(witness_id) from crime)>5 and

status=’crime’ and crime.offender_id=offender.offender_id and

crime.police_id=police.police_id and

crime.detective_id = detective.detective_id

group by crime.witness_id,crime.o_date, offender.f_name,offender.l_name,police.f_name,police.l_name,detective.f_name,detective.l_name;

  1. select distinct crime.witness_id,crime.o_date, offender.f_name,offender.l_name,police.f_name,police.l_name,detective.f_name,detective.l_name,count(crime.witness_id) from crime,offender,police,witness,detective where crime.o_date > to_date( ’04-Oct-2014′, ‘DD-Mon-YYYY’ ) and status=’crime’ and crime.offender_id=offender.offender_id and crime.police_id=police.police_id and crime.detective_id = detective.detective_id group by crime.witness_id,crime.o_date,offender.f_name,offender.l_name,police.f_name,police.l_name,detective.f_name,detective.l_name;

Part E

This section shows sample, queries, their english equivalent and related screenshots. Sqlfiddle online tool was used to generate the database schema and run queries (SQL Fiddle, 2014).

  • Close a crime case; the ID of the case is always provided

UPDATE crime SET status = ‘closed’ WHERE crime_id = 2;

Before query

After query run

  • Sort victims using their first name ,last name and gender

Select victin_id,nric_no,f_name,l_name,phone,gender,age from victim order by f_name,l_name,gender;

  • Joining tables

List crimes with all its details such assigned detective, reporter, witness, type of crime and reporting police from cloded crimes

select crime.o_date,crime.object_used,crime.crime_notes,crime.date_resolved,

crime.type_of_crime,police.f_name,detective.l_name

from crime left join police

on crime.police_id=police.police_id left join detective on crime.detective_id=detective.detective_id where status=’closed’;

  • Grouping using group by

List the crimes that are related by the fact that they occure in the the same city

SELECT DISTINCT o_date,type_of_crime,COUNT(city_id) AS city_Count

FROM crime GROUP BY type_of_crime, o_date;

  • Use of where clause

List all robbery crimes

select o_date,object_used,crime_notes,date_resolved from crime where type_of_crime=’robbery’;

  • Logical comparison

select distinct crime.witness_id,crime.o_date,

offender.f_name as offender ,police.f_name as police,

detective.f_name as detective

from crime,offender,police,witness,detective

where (select count(witness_id) from crime)>5 and

status=’open’ and crime.offender_id=offender.offender_id and crime.police_id=police.police_id and crime.detective_id = detective.detective_id

group by crime.witness_id,crime.o_date,offender.f_name, police.f_name,detective.f_name;

  • Sub-queries (sub-query is in the where clause)

List of crimes that are still in progres with a witness occuring more than five times

select distinct crime.witness_id,crime.o_date,

offender.f_name as offender ,police.f_name as police,

detective.f_name as detective

from crime,offender,police,witness,detective

where (select count(witness_id) from crime)>5 and

status=’open’ and crime.offender_id=offender.offender_id and crime.police_id=police.police_id and crime.detective_id = detective.detective_id

group by crime.witness_id,crime.o_date,offender.f_name, police.f_name,detective.f_name;

  • COUNT functions

List distinct types of crimes and their number

select distinct type_of_crime,count(witness_id) from crime group by type_of_crime;

References

CHEN, P. (2002). Data Modeling with Entity-Relationship Diagrams.

Class and Entity-Relationship Diagrams . (n.d.). Retrieved October 31, 2014, from toronto.edu: http://www.cs.toronto.edu/~sme/CSC340F/2005/slides/tutorial-classes_ERDs.pdf

Daisy, S. (2004). Developing a crime Analysis information system for police servoce in a developing country: The case of zambia police service.

Greenwald, R. (2001). Oracle Database (Third ed.). O’Reily.

Oracle. (2014). Oracle Database Installation Guide 11g Release 2 (11.2) for Microsoft Windows. Oracle .

Saber, M., & Khan, R. S. (2010). Design of a Hospital-Based Database System (A Case Study of BIRDEM). International Journal on Computer Science and Engineering , 2(8), 2616-2621 .

Smith, J. (2014). TECHNOLOGY: SQL Developer. Retrieved October 31, 2014, from Oracle : http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/issue-archive/2014/14-may/o34sqldev-2193423.html

Song, Y., Evans, M., & Park, E. (1195). A Comparative Analysis of Entity-Relationship Diagrams. Journal of Computer and Software Engineering,, 3(4).

SQL Fiddle. (2014). SQL Fiddle. Retrieved October 31, 2014, from SQL Fiddle: http://sqlfiddle.com/#!4/0a232/34

Techonthenet. (2014). Oracle/PLSQL: CREATE TABLE Statement. Retrieved October 31, 2014, from Techonthenet: http://www.techonthenet.com/oracle/tables/create_table.php

Human Relations

May 28, 2015

Communication in the workplace

Communication in the workplace has important implications for both employees and firms. The quality of communication in the workplace, for instance, influences a person’s day to day enjoyment and satisfaction at work. For firms, on the other hand, internal relations have an effect on organizational advantage since these relationships are essential in promoting cooperation in teams, creating intellectual capital, and enhancing job satisfaction among workers – factors that affect organizational productivity or performance. In fact, lack of communication has been cited as a key contributing factor to low employee morale. Human relations relates to the interpersonal and group interactions in the workplace. Certainly, communication is a key element in facilitating these interactions in business. Indeed, human relations is often viewed from the perspective of trying to develop systems as well as communication channels to facilitate creation of strong interpersonal and group relationships among employees. Therefore, human relations refer to the ability of individual employees to interact in a healthy manner with their colleagues in order to build productive relationships.

As earlier mentioned, communication is a core element of human relations. The ability of employees to convey messages clearly to their colleagues while also taking time to listen, with the aim of gaining proper understanding of an issue or situation, is highly necessary to building strong, healthy relationships. Some important aspects pertaining to communication and human relations are self-disclosure and trust. Employees’ willingness to share their personal views and feelings among themselves helps to bring them closer. In other words, communication helps individuals to be more comfortable with each other which facilitate human interaction. Strong relationships among employees in an organization make it easy for human resource managers to form strong, healthy relationships between different levels which translate to a stable, well focused workforce.

Human relations can be regarded as a process of fostering workplace culture, which is aided by effective communication. Effective communication in business is open and candid and plays a crucial role in building a stable workplace culture. By helping individuals to share meaning, ideas and thoughts, effective communication fosters the creation of a positive culture that defines a particular organization. Communication at the workplace creates an environment where employees work together in accomplishing projects and provide motivation to each other as they pursue organizational goals. This is what helps to build a strong organizational culture that promotes organizational productivity. In the absence of a stable and inviting culture in the workplace, serious challenges may arise in the logistics of managing employees. This implies that communication fosters good human relations which facilitate employee management.

In general, communication is a core element in human relations. It promotes interactions between individual employees and within groups. In the same way, effective communication helps in the formation of healthy relationships between workers and the management in a business set-up.

Getting along with your managers, co-workers and customer

Human relations in business are about the establishment of an appropriate environment whereby managers, workers, and customers get along well. To begin with, getting along well with one’s manager could be an important driver to happiness in the workplace. An employee’s relationship with his/her manager also determines his/her job performance. When an employee relates well with his/her boss, a job that may not be so great can eventually become more satisfying. Likewise, a great job may turn out to be a nightmare if there is a terrible relationship between an employee and his/her boss. One can establish a good relationship with his/her manager by being open to feedback, not personalizing workplace decisions, and respecting the preferences of the manager by giving him/her the benefit of doubt. Again, one should avoid complaining behind his manager’s back and avoid causing drama in case of disagreements. Overall, employees can get along with their managers by respecting the positions they hold in an organization and understanding that a good relationship has an effect on their work experience and job satisfaction.

In most cases, people work in an environment characterized by a diverse group of co-workers who possess different set of skills and have different backgrounds, values and interests. This diversity can be a source of organizational strength but may also give rise to conflicts among colleagues. To prevent this shortfall, individual employees must strive to get along well with their colleagues. This demands strong interpersonal skills, a proper understanding of organizational culture, and ability to adapt the style of work in a manner that will enable one to work with different personalities. For one to get along well with co-workers, he/she needs to learn about their interests, take time to listen, be friendly to them, avoid gossiping and stereotyping, offer help where possible, accept constructive criticism, and practice common courtesy. Getting along well with co-workers can foster team cohesiveness which is good for an organization. Besides, it has certain psychological benefits. For example, it makes one to feel accepted by others, which is important for job satisfaction. Again, a good relationship among employees can also be a source of personal support especially because work life may not always offer positive experiences.

Customers are undoubtedly the lifeblood of a business. As such, every organization must strive to build a strong rapport with them. By establishing a good relationship with customers, an organization can assure itself of a stable and flourishing business. To do this, business organizations must make every interaction count. While an organization may have succeeded in creating a credible reputation, one negative experience can send clients running to the competitors. Another important thing in ensuring a business organization gets along well with its customers is to establish connections with customers. This can be done by communicating with customers through emails, social media or websites. Organizations should also listen to their customers and reward loyalty in order to make them feel appreciated and valued. In general, getting along well with customers is a key aspect for every business organization since every business depends on a rich customer base for survival.

Managing conflict

Conflict is an unavoidable occurrence in organizations. Conflicts occur in both top-level management and in small groups of employees. As such, managing organizational conflicts is a crucial aspect in human resource management. It is important to note that not all forms of organizational conflicts are bad and dysfunctional. Some may pave way for positive changes and opportunities within an organization. However, all conflicts need to be resolved carefully to prevent negative outcomes. Among other things, human relations focuses on ensuring workplace conflicts do not escalate to dangerous levels since this can seriously affect the reputation of an organization. As such, the ability to manage conflicts is an important skill for managers.

Conflict management in an organization helps to strengthen the bond between employees themselves and between employees and the management (Rahim, 2011). It also aids in ensuring a cohesive management panel. Conflict management goes a long way in reducing stress and tension among employees which helps them to bond more closely for organizational and individual success. Indeed, tussles and fights have a negative effect on one’s personal life and spreads negativity in an organization. Therefore, conflict management plays an important role in promoting the well-being of individual employees, as well as organizational performance. Managing conflicts is highly crucial in an organization since a high level of negative conflict can be a recipe for employee dissatisfaction which can lead to expensive turnover and decreased productivity. Besides this, conflict management can foster creativity and innovation in an organization. Effective conflict management strategies can also foster organizational learning whereby organizations can benefit from different points of view that emerge during conflict organization (Rahim, 2011). In a learning organization, employees are able to express their opinions freely and make useful suggestions without the fear of triggering a conflict.

Sometimes, conflict may be a sign of an underlying problem especially one that relates to workplace relationships. For example, it may be a sign of ineffective communication and dysfunctional organizational culture among other aspects that relate to human resource management. In such cases, conflict management helps to strike out such problems, which helps to build a strong workplace culture. Generally, conflict management helps employees to understand and appreciate the differences that may arise among them and thus improve interpersonal and group relationships. This, in turn, promotes organizational success.

Reference

Rahim, M. A. (2011). Managing Conflict in Organizations, 4th Ed. New Brunswick, NJ:   Transaction Publishers.

Leadership style paper

May 28, 2015

The National Representative’s Affiliation composed a phase of disaster model to help crisis directors plan for and react to a disaster, otherwise called the ‘life cycle’ of thorough crisis administration. The four phases of disaster are preparedness, mitigation, response; and recovery. (FEMA EMI, 2009).

In this case, tornadoes and severe storms have been predicted to take place in Arkansas. The county emergency manager stays alert and aware of the day’s weather forecasts. He is also wary of all the official information that comes in from outside. When the tornado takes place, it causes devastating damage to Cray City. Power lines goes down, all water mains are broken, pink insulation appears to be everywhere, siding is wrapped around trees, cars have been flipped, and it now appears that no structure went unscathed. The officer is able to speak with key officials and responder agencies.

This is because they had been prepared, as a few years ago; they had secured grant funding to implement an interoperable radio system. The shared characteristics around different varieties of technological and natural disasters recommend that a significant number of the same administration techniques can apply to all such crises. An all-hazards methodology to crisis preparedness supports viable and predictable reaction to any disaster or crisis, paying little attention to the cause Preparedness includes steps to diminish defenselessness to disaster effects, for example, damages and misfortune of life and property.

Communications are likewise a fundamental variable in accomplishing precision, great timing, and right evaluating of an occasion’s extent. There are a few paramount parts of correspondences. One is the specialized capacity to convey rapidly and proficiently. This means having designated phone, radio, telex, and other electronic systems accessible, on perfect frequencies, and with reinforcement frameworks if there should arise an occurrence of disappointment of the essential framework. Capability to convey over a wide and broad range is likewise essential. An alternate significant part of correspondences is brief, well-disposed relations with the media, all of which could be of huge administration in times of crisis (FEMA Working Group, 2007).

In this case, there were several communication conscious steps that should have been taken to contain the situation. To start with, radio and phone communication would have been the major communication channels in this case. This is due to their reliability and ability ro convey urgent messages. At the juncture where the tornado began, they could have called for reinforcement in order to save some of the people who were injured. If any of these means failed, they could have employed texting services as they are also a reliable means. In the case, phone lines were dead, and could not be relied on. Thus, texting was the only available option of communication.

The increase of recurrence and extent of regular and human-made disasters throughout a decade ago made it clear that conventional crisis, emergency, and catastrophe administration instruments have ended up being ineffectual. In this respect, accepted methodologies portrayed by progressive system and centralization have been supplanted by decentralized crisis administration frameworks (FEMA EMI, 2009).

In this case, there is need to make risky decisions in order to try and save the situation. For instance, there needs to be coordinated effort as well as organizations in and crisis settings that will be underlining decentralized. There needs to be also an adaptable structure alongside significant managerial and administration conveyance changes, presents to its own particular notable issues to the table. One of such issues is synergistic decision making.

Barbra et al. (2005) portray competency as a “particular proficiencies needed for viable execution, inside the connection of a job’s obligations, which attains the objectives of the organization”(p. 3). Coordination among emergency managers and the whole community and all stakeholders at all levels is essential to effective emergency management.

In this case, the situation almost gets worse due to lack of technology utilization. There needs to be instant inventions and innovations towards the use of available technology. These innovations recently are continuously utilized broadly within associations with substantial armadas and field administration associations to run regular operations. Notwithstanding they are likewise assuming a part in storm harm evaluation and cleanup. Different offices and associations have been turning to these innovations to enhance catastrophe reaction. Red Cross employees, case in point, use handheld gadgets to evaluate harm in the result of characteristic calamities (FEMA Working Group, 2007). While previously, the Red Cross staff might hurry to the scene with clipboards under control to do their evaluations, now they utilize tough nomad handhelds to transfer data instantly to investigators at Red Cross home office.

As stated by Waugh, disaster administration happens inside a legitimate and additionally political setting. It is vital that the debacle managements be acquainted with the legitimate structure controlling disaster preparedness, administration, and moderation. The anticipation and administration of catastrophes needs a multifaceted methodology (Waugh n.d). This is on the grounds that there are diverse agencies included in the disaster reaction deliberations.

In this case, there exists a vicinity of shifted disaster administration associations and agencies as a result of the decentralized nature of the US government (Mcentire and Dawson 2007, p. 59). The associations and agencies have distinctive commands and work utilizing diverse lawful systems. This can result in an overlap in the work done by the bodies (Mcentire and Dawson 2007, p. 60). Once in a while, the federal prerequisites for offering aid clash with local necessities. Accordingly, states may not request elected support actually when it is vital, particularly if the federal prerequisites are politically disliked

Hoffman (2009) states that vulnerable groups are regularly ignored throughout and after disasters. Vulnerable groups, which incorporate the monetarily hindered, appear to endure the most throughout disasters (Hoffman, 2009). This is on account of they don’t have the emotional, economic, and social assets that can help to relieve that catastrophe (Hoffman, 2009). Disaster administrators ought to have a rundown of such burdened persons with the goal that they can accept the fundamental backing throughout a disaster (Hoffman, 2009). Large portion of the monetarily impeded persons tend to be from ethnic minorities who are isolated from social order (Hoffman, 2009).

In this case, there are ethical issues that have to be followed to the letter. All persons have the right to a reasonable treatment and a powerful legitimate solution to guarantee the insurance, regard and happiness regarding their rights concerning the anticipation measures arranged or if the powers neglect to act to embrace aversion and disaster hazard decrease measures and to organize relief (Etkin, 2006) .All persons should receive prompt help in the occasion of a regular or innovative disaster, including the benefit of essential wellbeing administrations. Compassionate help is given reasonably, fairly and without segregation, indicating due respect for the helplessness of victimized people and for people’s and assemblies’ particular needs.

References

FEMA Working Group. (2007). Principles of Emergency Management. Retrieved from http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/IS/IS230/Principles%20of%20EM.pdf

FEMA Emergency Management Institute (EMI), (2009). The College List. Retrieved from http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/edu/collegelist

Barbara, J. A., Macintyre, A. G., Shaw, G., Seefried, V., Waterman, L., & deCosmos, S. (2005). VHA–EMA Emergency Response and Recovery Competencies Survey, Analysis, and Report. Retrieved from http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/edu/EMCompetencies.asp

Kapucu, N. &Garayev, V. (2011). Collaborative Decision Making in Emergency and Disaster Management. International Journal of Public Administration, 34,366-375. Retrieved from http://sangyubr.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/collaborative-decision-making-in-emergency-and-disaster-management.pdf

Etkin, D. (2006, September). Emergency Management Core Competencies. Retrieved from http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/edu/EMCompetencies.asp

Buck, D., Trainor, J. & Aguirre, B. (2006). A Critical Evaluation of the Incident Command System and NIMS. Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, 3(3), 1-27.

Problem-Solution Report Writing on the Cost of Healthcare

May 28, 2015

Introduction

Healthcare is one of the top economic and communal problems facing many nations in the world. In most nations, the increase in health insurance and medical care has resulted to an unfavorable outcome to livelihood of several citizens. It has been noted in many nations that; failure to pay required medical care has amplified not only to those citizens who are not covered but also to those insured. Over the past 50 years medicine has improved worth of life and enlarged life expectancy ensuing to disparities in healthcare access. One of the top contributing issues is poverty in many nations. The causal path linking poor health results and scarcity are very complex. Through carried out studies on healthcare organisms plan, and inefficiencies are rising to be undertaken in many nations due to widespread appreciation of cost repression need.

Summary

 

Wasteful expenditure in the U.S. healthcare scheme is a widely accredited and seemingly intractable crisis. Healthcare costs caused by inappropriate and preventable use of medicines surpass $200 billion in 2012, according to IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics estimates. This study finds that even though unnecessary costs are considerable, encouraging advancement is being made in tackling some of the disputes that drive inefficient spending in many parts of the healthcare system.

Problems facing cost of healthcare

 

In most countries, avoidable costs in healthcare are usually incurred annually. The most contributing factor of this avoidable cost expenditure is delayed evidence-based treatment and non-adherence accounting for over 67% of the total cost. The problems facing cost of healthcare includes:

  1. Medication of non-adherence. This entails patients not taking their medicines appropriately. This results to complications that are expensive to treat, and it may worsen the health outcomes.
  2. Misuse of antibiotics. This results from inappropriate prescriptions and misdiagnosis that misleads to provide patients with antibiotics. Due to their low cost and misperceptions against severe diseases contribute to their overuse and misuse. This problem results to antimicrobial resistance and downstream avoidable costs as well as expensive treatment.
  3. Delayed evidenced-based treatment practice. This occurs due to delayed supply of medicines to patients. Diagnostic and screening capabilities can minimize and support timely delivery of medicines to curb costlier complications.
  4. Other problems include Mismanaged poly-pharmacy, Sub-optimal use of generics, and medication errors.

Solutions to these problems

 

  1. Regulations should be laid down on the supply and prescription of antibiotics.
  2. Government should also enhance adequate supply of medicines in all areas in a timely basis.
  3. The public should also be taught on the essentials of following doctor’s prescriptions to the letter and seeking medical advice and check-ups to qualified healthcare staffs.
  4. Public should also be encouraged for frequent medical checks so as increase of chronic diseases they are treated in early stages.

 

Recommendations

 

To promote and support upgrading in the worth and cost on the growing effectiveness and level of patient commitment in sinking healthcare expenses. The recommendations are;

  1. Employ technology for automatic filling of recommendation prescription, and automated prompt calls to patients.
  2. Motivations to empower and motivate pharmacists to implement a new patient service model and take part in the plan, with clearly defined benefits and objectives and a long-term plan.
  3. Training course that is obtainable to other healthcare stakeholders and pharmacies who can gain from the advance and the lessons educated.

Conclusion

 

There are a lot that healthcare stakeholders can do to endorse the responsible use of drugs, to progress health outcomes and finally reduce preventable healthcare costs. Most of these measures entail the involvement of several healthcare stakeholders. Taking into account the precedence actions delineated above, the extent of the improvement prospect in terms of unnecessary costs, and the timing and venture necessary by each action, five guiding principles surfaced which need to be pursued aggressively in order to accelerate progress.

Work cited

IMS Institute. Avoidable Cost In Healthcare.’’ American Health Journal. WEB.

http://www.imshealth.com/deployedfiles/imshealth/Global/Content/Corporate/IMS%20Institute/RUOM-2013/IHII_Responsible_Use_Medicines_2013.pdf

Regretting the Ink: The Process of Tattoo Removal

May 28, 2015

There are many ways on how people express their personalities and interests, and getting tattoos is one of them. However most often than not, when people decide to get a tattoo when they are younger, they seldom think of the consequences associated in getting an unwanted tattoo removed. There are many ways on how tattoos can be removed nowadays such as, dermabrasion, salabrasion, laser, and surgical removal; and more and more people are getting a tattoo nowadays, which suggests that tattoo removal can also get bigger as an industry in time. As a matter of fact, experts note that one in every four people in America has tattoos (Simpson, 2009). However, despite having many options on tattoo removal, the process remains a costly, painful, and time-consuming process, which makes a lot of people remain doubtful about the process despite their need to have the tattoo removed. The following discussions shall provide an overview of the tattoo culture in America as well as the growing industry of tattoo removal. This discussion shall also follow the premise that while tattooed individuals get many options on how to get their tattoos removed today, some still remain doubtful and hesitant as most methods remain costly, painful and branded with a stigma of tattoos being a mistake.

Literature Review

Tattoo and its Stigma in the Current Society

The society has undeniably grown more liberated over the years, accepting some of the prohibitions of the past and being more open about people’s freedom of self-expression. For a time, tattoos were considered taboo. Tatooed individuals were either seen to have violent tendencies or deviant. However, today, more and more people are getting tattoos and the society has apparently grown more accepting of this as a culture. As a matter of fact, approximately 15 to 20% of Americans have tattoos today (Simpson, 2009). The society’s acceptance of this culture has also been apparent in the rise of TV shows like Miami Ink, LA Ink, and Ink – among many others – that apparently makes the tattoo culture more mainstream. Overtime, more and more tattoo shops and parlors open as a clear manifestation of the society’s growing acceptance of body art.

However, despite popular acceptance, there are still environments where tattoos are frowned upon. In traditional suit-and-tie offices today for example, that deviant stigma about tattooed individuals still exists unless a person is a known part of a creative industry like music, arts, or entertainment in general. Aside from conflicts out of misjudgment and stereotyping, this stigma also erodes the confidence of people despite their abilities, as tattoos and piercings tend to trigger negative first impressions. Individuals with tattoos greatly suffer from such stigma as some of them find it hard to get their dream jobs just because they have ink on their skin. Lucky Lauren, a nurse from a tattoo removal clinic has had clients with such problem. These people usually come in the clinic complaining how they have been misjudged in applications because of their tattoos. As a result, despite liking their tattoos so much, these people are forced to have them removed just so they could land the job they want. Lauren notes, “If someone is intelligent, they’re loquacious and are able to conduct themselves in a professional manner within the workplace then I don’t think that tattoos should really be an issue” (Lauren, qtd. in Jinks, 2013).

So where does the stigma of tattoo and body piercings really come from? There are perhaps numerous factors; however, one of the most apparent reason for this impression is the sense of permanence. Having tattoos and piercings means having body modifications that cannot be reversed or taken back. Tattoos for example, are considered to stay in place for the a person’s lifetime. The electrically-powered tattoo machine injects a needle into the skin, penetrating the epidermis – outer skin layer – then depositing ink into the second layer of the skin called, dermis. Due to the permanence of tattoos and body piercings, most of the people who get them are usually misconstrued of having hasty decisions and less regard for their body.

Thinking Twice Before Getting Inked

More people are getting enticed to get a tattoo nowadays; but while getting a tattoo sounds like a good idea for some, it generally requires a great deal of thought beforehand. A tattoo’s permanence is a huge factor that people needs to consider. Getting a tattoo means scarring one’s body of permanent mark and symbol. Hence, getting a tattoo entails a particular level of affiliation or passion over something. People simply cannot irrationally get a tattoo without regretting it afterwards. In Caitlin Jinks’ article, Injecting Ink into the Workplace with Tattoo Discrimination, a nurse from a tattoo removal clinic notes how important it is to think twice before getting a tattoo. She suggests, “If they want a tattoo, they should get a picture of the tattoo and sit it by their bedside for twelve months, have look at it and say ‘I still love it,’ then get a tattoo because it’s something that’s stuck with you” (Lacey, qtd. in Jinks, 2013).

Aside from having a permanent mark on their skin, people need to think through getting a tattoo due to its associated risks. In the article, Think Before You Ink: Are Tattoos Safe? the Food and Drug Administration cites different risks associated to getting a tattoo:

  • Infection – individuals face the risk of acquiring hepatitis and HIV by getting tattoos from unsanitary tattoo parlors. Dirty needles can pass these infections easily from one client to another
  • Allergies – much like any cosmetic or skin product, the ink pigments that are injected on a person’s skin when getting a tattoo could cause different types of allergic reactions and has been reported to cause more serious problems
  • Scarring – unwanted scarring on the skin may also happen when undergoing a tattoo removal procedure
  • Granulomas – tattoo pigments can be perceived by the body’s immune system as foreign; this may cause small bumps and knots to form around it as a result of an accumulation of antibodies
  • MRI complications – patients may also experience swelling and burning sensation when going through a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), though this has been reported to happen rarely (FDA, 2009)

These risks does not always happen to everyone who decides to get inked; however, the effects of these risks can be very serious to one’s health. FDA notes that while most ink pigments today are safe, some pigments have not yet gone through the tests FDA initiated. With the aid of the Arkansas-based National center for Toxicological Research, FDA is trying to find out a few things about ink pigments that could possibly be harmful to human health, such as the ink’s chemical composition, short-term and long-term safety of pigments, as well as the usual body reaction to when light interacts with ink (FDA, 2009). Linda Katz, Director of FDA’s Office of Cosmetics and Colors in the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition further notes, “Our hope is to get a better understanding of the body’s response to tattoos and their impact on human health, and to identify products at greatest risk” (Katz, qtd. in FDA, 2009). Moreover, FDA says they have yet to approve any tattoo pigments for injection into the skin. This applies to all tattoo pigments, including those used for ultraviolet (UV) and glow-in-the-dark tattoos.

What does the Bible Say about Tattoos?

When speaking of taboos and prohibitions, the Bible is often a reference point for many. Hence, in light of this discussion about tattoos and body piercings, is there something mentioned in the Holy Scriptures prohibiting people of being inked? Perhaps the most related passage to tattoos from the Bible is this: “You shall not make any cuts in your body for the dead nor make any tattoo marks on yourselves: I am the Lord” (Leviticus 19:29 – New American Standard). At a glance, this passage can be easily interpreted as a prohibition for having tattoos as creative expression; however, in order to understand the passage’s real intent and purpose, one must first read through the context of the chapter that it is in. In analyzing the context of this verse from its chapter, it actually speaks about cutting or marking the body for dead relatives. This was said to be the practice of people who worshipped pagan gods, therefore veering them away from God’s guidance and protection (Gerwig, 2007). Today, people get a tattoo as means of self-expression; either the symbol has a deeper meaning to the owner, or it represents a particular truth about the wearer. Tattooed Christians do not actually mark themselves to rebel or pay tribute to false idols or anti-Christian gods. A lot of these people even mark themselves permanently with symbols that represent their devotion to Christ; but in reality, tattoos are not for everybody. Many will still question it relevance and meaning, hence Christians – and people from other belief systems with very strict rules about self-expression through the body – who are planning to get inked must think it through deeply and weigh all the pros and repercussions.

Argument

Obsolete Tattoo Removal Procedures: Dermabrasion

Once a person regrets a tattoo, s/he will naturally go for the easiest method there is to remove it. Luckily for these people, there are actually ointments being sold online that are said remove tattoos without the assistance of a professional dermatologist. Unluckily for them though, these products are yet to be approved by the FDA. There are also several other methods of tattoo removal that have been prohibited in the United States due to the risks involved in them. For one, physicians note dermabrasion with metal or diamond-coated fraises or abrasive sakts (salabration). This process uses a diamond fraise wheel or wire brush to destroy the surface of the skin, which had been frozen with a typical cryogen (Bernstein, 2007). In an article entitled, Lasers in Plastic Surgery: Laser Tattoo Removal by Eric Bernstein, the author says that “there is virtually always some scarring [in dermabrasion], loss of normal skin pigment, and residual tattoo when using this method of tattoo removal” (Bernstein, 2007). The author also notes that using salt or other rough surfaces such as sand paper can also remove the surface of the skin in the attempt to remove a tattoo; however, it is the inflammation that actually removes some of the tattoo pigment the reason why this method has already considered obsolete.

Tattoo Removal by Laser

Tattoo removal through laser is perhaps the most trusted method there is. However, despite being a reliable method for tattoo removal, this process remains to be a tedious and very expensive procedure.

Kosoglu explains laser removal being a highly sensitive procedure involving high-intensity laser energy absorption by the skin. The expert notes that what happens is pulses of high-intensity laser energy passes through the epidermis and are selectively absorbed by the tattoo pigment. The laser then breaks the pigment into smaller particles, which then is excreted by the body the way the body gets rid of bacteria (Kosoglu, qtd. in FDA, 2014). Kosoglu also notes that because every color of ink absorbs different wavelengths of light, multi-colored tattoos will require the use of multiple lasers. The expert further notes that, “lighter colors such as green, red, and yellow are the hardest to remove, while blue and black are the easiest to remove” (FDA, 2014). Hence, tattoo laser removal cannot be effective in a single treatment. Depending on the tattoo’s size and colors, it could require multiple visits to the dermatologist’s clinic and a few weeks of healing time between procedures. Moreover, this procedure may also entail some side effects like, pinpoint bleeding, redness, or soreness (FDA, 2014). On the average, tattoo laser removals could take over six to ten treatments, and this procedure is usually spread over six to eight weeks; and a patient would have to wait over a year for the tattoo to be completely removed from the skin. On the average, doctors also charge around fifty dollars per square inch for laser removals – a price that obviously not everybody can afford, considering the extent of tattoo coverage people have nowadays. As a result, the easiest tattoo removal procedure remains a tedious and a very expensive treatment. While it has been available for tattooed people for a long time, many still hesitate availing the service because of its cost and complexity.

Surgical Excision

Tattoos vary in size, shapes and inspiration. In some cultures, the larger the tattoo, the greater the honor and impression are on the person. Generally, tattoos signify strength and confidence to have a lifetime body modification; and apparently, larger tattoos give people greater pride. However, the problem with larger tattoos is, obviously, it will be harder to remove one the wearer regrets it. Fortunately though, there is a surgical procedure recommended for removing larger tattoos. Surgical excision is a series of multiple surgeries performed in a staged manner for removing a tattoo completely. It is recommended for larger tattoos as these marks would often take a very long time to remove by laser or dermabrasion. The problem with surgical excision though is, there is a significant risk of producing scars that can actually be debilitating because of the often varied locations of tattoos (Bernstein, 2007). Bernstein observes, “Tattoos that are placed on acral locations may have insufficient loose skin for easy removal. In addition, tattoos in these locations may result in scars that restrict movement due to contraction” (Bernstein, 2007). This is one factor that makes people hesitant about undergoing the procedure as they are torn between retaining the tattoo and acquiring scars that are most likely to last their lifetimes too. Surgical excision has been mostly recommended for people who are having allergic reactions to their tattoos. Laser removal is generally not allowed on people with allergic reactions to pigments as this may cause more severe reactions. Surgical excision also appear to be as expensive (even more in some cases) as laser removal. Furthermore, patients will be required to spend on post-operative medication and antibiotics, which is another relevant factor on why people are second-guessing undergoing the procedure.

Medical technology is coping up with the growing tattoo industry, which is a good thing. However for some reason, tattoo removal procedures remain risky and costly. Sure getting a tattoo is a big decision that everybody needs to think through very carefully – some people say that having a tattoo removed is more painful than getting a tattoo itself; but considering factors such as allergic reactions and the inevitable workplace discrimination, these people also deserve convenient options on how to remove marks that nonetheless make their lives more difficult.

Conclusion

While a significant number of people in America has a tattoo and wants to get one, among this population, a significant number of wearer also regret having one (FDA). Getting a tattoo is part of an individual’s right to self-expression. However, as apparent by the current proliferation of the tattoo removal industry, more people are seeking the chance to get a reverse a bad decision they once made. But while there are several options available to the public today, these procedures remain risky and very expensive. Because of this, a lot of people remain hesitant to undergo such procedure despite the desire to get a mark taken off their skin. It is true; the public deserves convenient and safe options on how to get their tattoos removes. But perhaps the unavailability of these convenient and safe procedure is the society’s way of telling that getting a tattoo is a huge life decision everybody needs to think through carefully. It cannot be denied that there remains a stigma about tattooed people; and while this cannot be eliminated that easily, people who want to get a tattoo needs to consider this too as the emotional effects of negative impressions on tattooed people could hurt more than any removal procedure.

Works Cited

Bernstein, Eric. “Laser Tattoo Removal.” Seminars in Plastic Surgery, Thieme Medical Publishers. Aug 2007. 1 Apr 2014. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2884836/&gt;. Web

Food and Drug Administration. “Think Before You Ink: Are Tattoos Safe?” FDA Consumer Health Information, 21 Mar 2014. 11 Apr 2014. <http://www.fda.gov/downloads/forconsumers/consumerupdates/ucm143401.pdf >. Web

Gerwig, Chuck. “Tattoo and The Bible | Sacred Ink” Sacred Digital, Brough Communications. 7 Apr 2007. 30 Mar 2014. <http://www.sacredink.net/tattoo_and_the_bible/ >. Web

Jinks, Caitlin. “Injecting Ink into the Workplace with Tattoo Discrimination”. ABC Illawarra NSW. 22 Apr 2013. 30 Mar 2014. <http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2013/04/22/3742014.htm&gt;. Web

Simpson, Summer. “Tattoos in the Workplace [Inquiring Minds]”. The Creative Coast, Savannah Economic Development Authority. 18 May 2009. 30 Mar 2014. <http://www.thecreativecoast.org/tattoos-in-the-workplace-inquiring-minds/#.U3YcGIGSxvk&gt;. Web

Urdang, Michael, Mallek, Jennifer, and Mallon, William. “Tattoos and Piercings: A Review for the Emergency Physician.” National Center for Biotechnology Information, US National Library of Medicine. 02 May 2006. 1 Apr 2014. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3236178/&gt;. Web

Assessment of a case study

May 28, 2015

Abstract

Ruth’s Chris Steak house is a company that has just concluded a very successful IPO. They had made promises in their 2005 report to expand and increase their revenue. This assessment will help them make a decision on how to fulfill the above mentioned promise.

Ruth’s Chris steak house has just concluded a successful IPO. The IPO was able to raise an equity capital of more than one hundred and fifty four dollars. Although the existing stores are experiencing an increase in revenue growth the company is finding it necessary to expand by entering the international market. These will enable them fulfill the commitment they made in the 2005 annual report. They promised to grow the company by setting up both company owned steak houses and also by selling franchises. While this is still possible they must be careful not to disappoint the shareholders because after such a successful IPO they expect an increase in share prices. This can only be achieved by maximizing the amount of profit.

Though Ruth’s Chris steak house intends to increase its profits through expansion to the international market, there are several issues that are making it difficult. One of the issues is that though the senior management is committed to the idea of expanding the business not all of them think that international expansion is the way to go. Secondly, there are some market barriers they may have to deal with for example some countries do not accept the use of beef from the United States. They also do not have enough data about market trends. Finally, their franchising conditions are not very favorable and may discourage many potential partners. These are;

  1. A liquid net worth of One million USD,
  2. verifiable experience within the hospitality industry,
  3. desire and ability to develop multiple locations,
  4. 100 USD per restaurant franchise fee
  5. 5% gross sales royalty fee
  6. and finally 2% gross sales fee.

These might be considered as too many conditions.

It is also important to note the countries that have successfully set up franchises they include; Canada, Mexico, Hong Kong and Taiwan. In these countries instead of setting up company owned restaurants they should consider continuing with franchising. This is because people are generally skeptical about foreign owned restaurants.

Another way of dealing with the above mentioned issues would be to reconsider the franchising conditions. This will enable more people to be interested in the business without feeling like they are selling their should to the business. They should use this as a marketing strategy. They can do these by looking at what conditions are required by fellow competitors.

To deal with the issue of people not accepting the use of US beef. They may consider allowing the franchises to use beef from the local community. As long as the meat is properly inspected and meets their standards. By doing so, they will become popular in the particular country since they will be supporting the local businesses.

As for the lack of market data they will have to collect all relevant information before entering any new country. This will enable then to know how to market their products. They will also be able to find out which countries have the greatest risk and which ones will be a walk through the park. Once they have established this they will know which countries to go to first.

The selecting decision criteria should be based on which decision will enable them to fulfill the promises they made in the 2005 annual report. There are several alternatives to these they may consider continuing to sell franchises to the countries that they have already done so. They may also consider relaxing the franchising conditions. Another alternative would be to set up company owned restaurants.

By expanding in the already successful countries, that is Canada, Hong Kong, Mexico and Taiwan, they have a better chance of achieving the above mentioned goal. This is because they already have avenues into these markets and the research has already been done. The Cons of doing these are that it could limit the growth potential of going to other countries.

In conclusion, Ruth’s Chris steak house should do the following. They should first expand franchises in Canada, Hong Kong, Mexico and Taiwan. This is because they already have inlets into these markets. They also have an understanding on how to deal with partners from these countries. They can also attempt to encourage partners with existing franchises to open new restaurants. This can be done by giving discounts and offers.

They also need to look at their franchising agreement and relax some of the conditions so as to stop discouraging potential partners. Finally before they go into any country they need to do proper and complete market research, to avoid loss making investments by investing in the wrong country.

References

Gofton, L., & Ness, M. (1997). Business market research. Montreal: Renouf.

Welch, L. S., Benito, G. R. G., & Petersen, B. (2007). Foreign operation methods: Theory, analysis, strategy. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.

Sherman, A. J. (2004). Franchising & licensing: Two powerful ways to grow your business in any economy. New York, NY: AMACOM.

An Investigation of Corporate Social Responsibility among Companies in the Oil Industry

May 27, 2015

An Investigation of Corporate Social Responsibility among Companies in the Oil Industry

Name:

Course:

Professor’s name:

University name:

City, State

Date of Submission

Abstract

The research looks at measures of corporate social responsibility that have been done in the oil industry to determine how genuine they are, whether they are worse in developing countries and whether regulation offers a better assurance to stakeholders. The literature review highlight to the conflict of interest that exists in shareholders when it comes to corporate social responsibility. Companies in the oil industry only seem to react to extrinsic pressure from stakeholders. The research methodology settles on the use of a secondary qualitative study. A multiple case study analysis is adopted to answer the research questions. The results of the data analysis indicate that oil companies are more reactive rather than proactive in corporate social responsibility except for the case of BP. This occurs after pressure from stakeholders or the international community. In the case of Nigeria, the economic loss led to the change in policy. The research also determined that developing countries are the worst hit. Finally, regulation seems to provide a better assurance to stakeholders as opposed to self-regulated corporate social responsibility policies.

Table of Contents

Abstract 2

1.0 Introduction. 5

1.1 Background of the study. 5

1.2 Statement of the problem.. 7

1.3 Aims and objectives of the study. 8

1.4 Significance of the study. 9

1.5 Scope of the study. 10

1.6 Overview of the study. 10

2.0 Literature reviews. 11

2.1 Introduction. 11

2.2 Theoretical Framework. 11

2.3 Corporate social responsibility in the oil industry. 13

2.4 Corporate social responsibility as a social license. 14

2.5 The Oil industry and the environment 15

2.6 Differences in developed and developing nations. 17

3.0 Research methodology. 19

3.1 Introduction. 19

3.2 Research approach. 19

3.3 Research design. 21

3.4 Research method. 22

3.5 Data collection and analysis. 22

3.6 Ethical considerations. 22

4.0 Data Analysis. 23

4.1 Introduction. 23

4.2 Case studies. 23

4.2.1 Exxon Valdez Oil Spill 23

4.2.2 The Piper Alpha disaster 26

4.2.3 The violation of human rights in Nigeria. 28

4.2.4 BP’s Global Warming acknowledgment 32

4.3 Discussion. 33

5.0 Conclusion and Recommendations. 35

5.1 Conclusions. 35

5.2 Recommendations. 37

5.3 Recommendations for future studies. 37

References. 38

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Background of the study

Corporate social responsibility is a term that refers to the responsibility that organizations have towards other elements while they continue their operations. Nowadays, this issue is imperative to how companies conduct business. While corporate social responsibility seems to be a new topic, many different scholars have debated it since the concept of business was developed. In truth, the interaction of business with the environment cannot be classified as something new in practice or theory. However, there has been greater pressure on businesses to adhere to corporate social responsibility in an attempt to increase the ethical consideration that businesses have when they exploit resources. This means that the mutual interaction of businesses with the environment cannot be one-sided in nature. The environment needs to be maintained or exploited within reasonable measures (Jamali & Mirshak, 2007, p. 82). When considering the environment, this does not refer to only the physical environment, this refers to the entire combination of social, environmental and business aspects that are affected by the business. An example is when a business deals with mining, the environment is affected by the drilling and the relocation of physical material. Socially, the company needs to compensate workers adequately based on the type of work and the risk involved in their work. Finally, some of the profits need to be used in ensuring that the company improves the lives of the people in the geographical region that they live. This clearly shows that corporate social responsibility needs to be done from a holistic approach where there is harmony with all the different aspect of a business. This harmony has made corporate social responsibility a common topic in many academic studies.

The following graph shows the increase in corporate social responsibility

The main conundrum with corporate social responsibility is that it organizations are based on the need to increase wealth and profitability. This means that a company needs to reduce any extra expenses in order to increase the overall profit margin that the organization is having. Milton Friedman highlighted that there are two fundamental questions that limit the effectiveness of corporate social responsibility. The first question is: What are the organization’s goals? Most companies are not created with the aim of adding value to a community or protecting an environment. In most cases, companies are started to add wealth to the shareholders. This means that most companies seek to exploit existing resources in order to increase profit. The exception is non-profit organizations that seek to improve the welfare of people or protect the environment. However, there are very few such companies in existence. This means that corporate social responsibility is essentially going against the goals of most organizations. In truth, the question is whether these organizations engage in corporate social responsibility for public approval, or they do it genuinely. Based on the evidence provided by Friedman, many of these companies only do this is order to avoid negative publicity for lack of corporate social responsibility. The second question is: Whether there are any authorities that determine the vital activities of companies? This is a subject of regulation. Regulation in most industries is done based on the overall nature of the industry. However, each company is in a different location with different effects on the environment (Prno & Slocombe, 2012). This means that regulations cannot be specific enough to determine what is vital in corporate social responsibility. Therefore, many companies self-regulate when dealing with social corporate responsibility. The organizations will then seek to do this while minimizing the cost to increase profit margins.

Corporate social responsibility needs to be viewed from two perspectives. The first is from the shareholders who seek to gain a direct return on the capital that they have contributed. The second are stakeholders who are directly and indirectly affected by the activities of the organization. Shareholders seek to gain a return on their investment and then increase the profit that they gain from the organization. Corporate social responsibility can be viewed as a liability to shareholders. On the other hand, stakeholders are interested in ensuring that the exploitation of resources by the organization is done sustainably while ensuring the integrity of the environment and community that interacts with the business. However, it is important to note that decision making in any organization is made by the shareholders. Shareholders determine the members who are included on the board of the company. This means that shareholders have a direct influence on the company. Since the shareholders view corporate social responsibility as a liability, it is done in a minimalistic way or simply as a public relations gimmick that seeks to improve brand image. On the other hand, stakeholders in any organization are not involved in policy making. This means that the only way that corporate social responsibility is improved is through intrinsic motivation by the shareholders or extrinsic pressure from stakeholders (Brown & Forster, 2013). This makes corporate social responsibility difficult to completely achieve when the stakeholders are handicapped by an inability to create concrete policies in the country.

1.2 Statement of the problem

The problem with corporate social responsibility arises from the fact that it goes against what is viewed as economic rationality. This means that economically, social corporate responsibility is a liability that businesses. The problem then arises of whether then corporate social responsibility measures in a company are genuine or only there to give the impression that they are willing to be responsible to reduce the extrinsic pressure from stakeholders.

This problem is compounded in the oil industry that is prone to numerous cases of negative externalities, negligence, and fraud. The problem arises from several main conditions. The first condition is the nature of the companies and the profit margins that are expected. Most oil companies are Fortune 500 companies that are known for their large profit margins. Due to this, the companies seek to minimize the liabilities as much as possible. Due to the most of the corporate social responsibility is only a fraction of the total profitability. In proportion to other industries, the percentage of earnings as compared to the portion that is set aside for corporate social responsibility is very low. This means that in terms of proportions of earnings, the contribution of oil companies is low despite being more in quantity than from other companies.

The second issue that can be highlighted is the nature of the commodity. Oil is a scarce resource. Due to this, most companies are willing to increase the risk that is expected to get the commodity. This increase in risk means that there are greater hazards not only to the environment, but to communities where oil is being drilled from or transported. The complexity is that the problem is based on duality. The first is the short term risk that arises from oil spills, natural gas leaks and disposal of by-products. The long-term issue is the issue of global warming or the increase of carbon emissions due to oil. On a social level, there is a question of the communities that are around areas with oil reserves. The threats of displacement and compensation that the workers are given as compared to the salaries of the greatest executives.

While corporate social responsibility is being practiced in the oil industry, it is important to note that several academic articles have highlighted that the oil industry uses corporate social responsibility for three reasons. The first is to seek a social license to operate in a specific area. The second is to provide the perception of corporate social responsibility and lastly is to provide problem-solving systems that are based on value creation. This begs the question of how genuine the corporate social responsibility is from oil companies.

1.3 Aims and objectives of the study

The aim of the study is to review corporate social responsibility in the oil industry in an attempt to determine whether these companies are adhering to corporate social responsibility policies or whether they use it as a public relations campaign to reduce the extrinsic pressure from stakeholders.

The specific objectives of the study are:

  • To determine whether oil companies are motivated by disaster and extrinsic stakeholder pressure to adopt corporate social responsibility or whether they are motivated by intrinsic desire
  • To determine whether corporate social responsibility in oil companies is worse in developing countries
  • To determine whether government regulation would bring better results as opposed to social corporate responsibility in the oil industry

The specific objectives highlighted above needs to be reviewed based on the following research question.

  • Are oil companies being motivated by disaster and extrinsic stakeholder pressure to adopt corporate social responsibility or whether they are motivated by intrinsic desire?
  • Is corporate social responsibility among companies in the oil industry worse in developing countries due to lack of extrinsic pressure?
  • Will regulation bring better results as opposed to corporate social responsibility in the oil industry?

1.4 Significance of the study

The research seeks to view corporate social responsibility in the oil industry from a perspective of whether organizations in the oil industry. There are numerous academic papers that attest to the existence of social corporate responsibility in the oil industry. However, there are few papers that look at how genuine the corporate social responsibility appears. In addition to this, stakeholders apply pressure to companies extrinsically to push the agenda of corporate social responsibility. However, in developing countries, there is a lack of this push and oil companies may be inclined to forgo corporate social responsibility altogether. This study is important because it will highlight such instances. Finally, a study on corporate social responsibility is important because it provides a snapshot of the industry to allow future comparison with measures that will be made by the industry.

1.5 Scope of the study

The scope of the study refers to the implications and the reach of the study. The research that will be done will look at companies in the oil industry. This will be a global review where company corporate social responsibility policies will be reviewed both in developing and developed countries. This will determine whether pressure from stakeholders in developed countries provides the extrinsic pressure. This will determine whether companies can self-regulate. In case of the latter, the study will conclude that regulation needs to be set to ensure that companies adhere to certain rules.

1.6 Overview of the study

The dissertation is subdivided into three main parts. The first segment involves an introduction of the paper. A background of the concept of corporate social responsibility is provided where main aspects of the topic are discussed. A problem statement reviewing the main issues in the oil industry as the objectives and research questions are set in the study. The second segment involves a review of literature that concerns corporate social responsibility in the oil industry. Major researchers such as Friedman are quoted. The third section of the study involves a review of the research methodology that is used in the study. A secondary approach is used with qualitative analysis preferred due to the nature of the objectives. The fourth segment involves a review of the data selected and determination of the underlying themes. An explanation is provided based on the research question. Finally, the segment on conclusions reviews the study based on the objectives. Recommendations are made based on the results of the study.

2.0 Literature reviews

2.1 Introduction

This segment of the study reviews the academic literature on the subject. This involves looking at the difference between stakeholder and shareholder pressure in an organization based on the importance of making profits. The study proceeds to look at academic issues in corporate social responsibility in the oil industry.

2.2 Theoretical Framework

According to the shareholder view of the firm, the only role that the management should play is to increase the wealth of the company’s equity owners and other groups that have made monetary investments. The view, advanced by Milton Friedman, argues that private investors deserve to be in the controlling seat of the company’s decision-making process. At the same time, shareholders should have a first claim to the company’s returns based on the fact that they incur the opportunity cost of investing in the company instead of pursuing other projects. In this regard, the shareholder theory argues that pursuing alternative goals, such as corporate social responsibility acts, would have a diminishing effect on shareholder value.

In support of the shareholder view, Jensen and Meckling urged companies and their shareholders to peg managers’ performance on how much return was generated from managerial decisions. Therefore, there was an increase in the number of companies that peg their manager’s pay on such indicators as the company’s stock price and the amount of profits made over one year. An additional idea advanced by Jensen and Meckling was that a group of few private equity firms has the potential of extracting the best results from a listed company as opposed to where the listed company is owned by a diversified number of shareholders. Martin (2010) noted that Jensen and Meckling were of the opinion that managers and shareholders were not on similar terms as far as whose goals should be satisfied first. Having been handed over the running, and the capital, of the company, managers were free to pursue their interests. This was at the cost of maximising the wealth of shareholders. The arguments advanced by Jensen and Meckling, and Friedman make little mention of the important role played by other groups of people within the company.

The idea that shareholders are an important factor towards the success of a company is not one to be refuted. This is based on the fact that they contribute the capital that is necessary for the establishment of the company. However, the idea that they are the only group of people who matter once the company is operational has been put to the test. In fact, it has been argued that the management has done a poor job of satisfying this obligation towards shareholders. For example, Jensen (1968) found that private mutual funds did a worse job at increasing shareholder wealth as compared to individual investors. In a more recent finding, it is estimated that shareholder returns for the period between 1933 and 1976 was just 7.6% (Martin, 2010). However, the returns were worse in the period between 1977 and 2008 where the average shareholder made a return of 5.9% every year (Martin, 2010). Therefore, there is enough evidence to dispute the argument that shareholders are the only group of people who should be considered when managing the company because a sole focus on their needs has left them worse off than when the company managerial theory was also intent on satisfying the needs of other groups.

According to Freeman (1984), the role of stakeholders is not one to be ignored. In his landmark book, Freeman (1984) defined a stakeholder to be that group of people who affect or are affected by the operations of the company, in this regard, a stakeholder group could be inclusive of employees who play a vital role as innovators and even managers of shareholder’s money. It would also include suppliers who play the role of providing quality inputs to the company. Other major stakeholders in the company have been identified to be the government, customers, and the society at large. One of the advancements of stakeholder theory is through a company’s corporate social responsibility activities (Brown & Forster, 2013).

According to Wagner et al (2011), one of the issues that confronts a manager is seeking to fulfil the needs of stakeholders is the basic fact that there is a long list of groups whose needs are paramount to the company. The result is that the manager is often at a loss on how to prioritize on the divergent and often conflicting needs of each stakeholder group. For instance, satisfying the needs of employees might require the spending of vast amounts of money on training and motivation. Such a step comes at the expense of reducing the company’s profitability and shareholder returns. In the recent past, these needs have been forged into three; economic, social, and environmental (Stenzel, 2010, p. 1). These needs have been confided in a reporting framework known as the Global Reporting Initiative (Global Reporting Initiative, 2014; Alazzani & Wan-Hussin, 2013).

2.3 Corporate social responsibility in the oil industry

According to Alazzani and Wan-Hussin (2013), an increasing number of oil and gas companies are adopting the GRI as the standard against which they assess their CSR activities. According the GRI, there are three perspectives that could be used in classifying stakeholders and their respective needs. These are economic, environmental, and social aspects (Global Reporting Initiative, 2014). The economic aspect seeks to assess how well the company did in terms of making credible profit returns to shareholders. In addition, the economic perspective assesses how well the company performed in terms of establishing a market presence and other indirect economic impacts.

According to Alzalabani (2013), one of the main reasons for the economic recession of between 2007 and 2009 was the fact that companies took out excessive risks. This was especially with regards to their capital structures that were loaded with high levels of debt. In this regard, GRI’s economic perspective seeks to address other economic indicators as being the amount of risk that the company is exposed to as a result of its operations.

According to Marimon (2012) and as contained in the reporting standards, the second perspective is that the company should conduct its operations in a manner that can be considered to be environmentally sustainable. Under this perspective, the company is expected to employ sound production and operational systems that cause minimum impact on the environmental well-being. According to Lozano (2012), companies should seek to ensure that their current product needs do not interfere or diminish the needs of future generations. In this regard, it is important that the company is aware of its impact on the environment by performing tests on the amount of effluents and wastes released to the environment, carbon emissions, biodiversity, and the environmental cost of transport.

2.4 Corporate social responsibility as a social license

According to Owen and Kemp (2012), mining companies must be keenly aware that they operate with the authority from the local community. In the past, mining companies were distrusted by local communities owing to the latter’s capabilities to destroy the livelihood and fabric of an entire society. With developments in global legal structures, it became possible for these local communities to outvote mining company interests through court suits (Prno & Slocombe, 2012, p. 349). Such results have been termed as the mining company failing to gather gain the social license to operate. In gaining the social licence, a mining company is expected to address the issues of labour practices, human rights, product responsibility, and general social needs such as corruption and public policy (Global Reporting Initiative, 2014; Prno & Slocombe, 2012).

According to Cheon et al. (2014), oil and gas companies are the wealthiest of all companies across the world. In the 2014 Fortune 500 listing of companies by virtue of gross revenues, there were four companies among the top ten whose core business is directly related to the mining, refining, and marketing of oil and gas (Time Inc., 2015). Moreover, the top ten companies included two companies dealing in the production of automobiles, which are the highest consumers of oil and gas products (Time Inc., 2015). Collectively, oil and gas companies play a critical role in the world of business through the revenues and profits generated. For instance, it is estimated that the entire oil and gas industry is worth about £35 billion in annual revenues for the UK and $134 billion to the US economy (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2015; British Broadcasting Corporation, 2014). It is not possible to deny that the petroleum industry is a major player in the global economy and that of countries that are directly involved in the mining and refining processes.

According to Frynas (2009), the four major petroleum companies (Royal Dutch Shell, Exxon, BO, and Chevron) spent an estimated $500 between them on developing the communities where they had operations. During the year 2013, Royal Dutch Shell spent an estimated $160 million in voluntary social activities (Royal Shell Plc., 2013). The inference is that these companies play a large role in developing the communities in which they operate. According to Spence (2011), the reason for increased spending in the community is due to the increased gap in expectations between the society and the company’s business interests. Moreover, the cost of suffering reputational damage has far exceeded the cost of make such investments (Spence, 2011, p. 78).

2.5 The Oil industry and the environment

Recent studies have shown that oil and gas companies are some of the largest contributors towards the phenomenon that is global warming (McKibben, 2012). Globally, it is estimated that oil and gas producing nations hold over 2,795 gigatons of fuel reserves, this is compared to the 565 gigatons that is estimated to be safe so as to avoid the danger of escalating global warming to higher levels than is already the case. While these could be considered to be merely reserves that are yet to be released into the atmosphere, it is plausible to consider other factors. One, these are reserves that are owned by a country and an oil and gas company. Therefore, the nation and the company have already factored these reserves into their balance sheets as development costs and intangible assets, as per the accounting rules (Damodaran, 2009; Deloitte Global Services Limited, 2015). The implication is that the reserves have to be used up at one time in the future so as to fulfil the needs of debtors who loan money based on the estimated amount of oil held by a company or the entire nation.

CSR is classically defined to be a voluntary undertaking on the part of the company towards its list of prominent stakeholders (Frynas, 2005, p. 586). However, there are other motives for undertaking CSR activities. According to Spence (2011), a mining company might engage in CSR activities as part of the act to appear sensitive to the needs of the market. These needs include taking care of the environment and the community in which it operates. Moreover, mining companies might investment in CSR in the hope of motivating their employees, gaining a competitive advantage, maintaining stable operating conditions, among other external needs (Frynas, 2005, p. 583).

However, these are needs that are beside the primary perception of CSR, which is the provision of a solution where general business laws fall short (Frynas, 2012, p. 7). Therefore, countries are increasingly making it mandatory for companies to set aside a certain sum of funds for the sole purpose of developing the communities in which they operate. Moreover, it has become mandatory for petroleum companies to adhere to certain environmental rules across the world, especially in developed nations. With carbon emission targets being set by national governments, oil and gas companies are hard pressed to become responsible towards the environment and the society in general.

One of the core areas where government regulation has played a key role in the petroleum industry is with regards to oil spills (Frynas, 2012, p. 1). Oil spills are defined to be the accidental leaks into the environment that occur during the operation of oil mining, transportation, or marketing operation (Frynas, 2012). Oil spills can have a catastrophic impact on the environment, and the community affected. For instance, the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of the year 2010. The oil well was offshore of the American coast, about forty-one kilometre away from the nearest American port. During its collapse and subsequent explosion, the accident led to the direct deaths of eleven employees and the injuries to tens more. Besides the loss of life, the catastrophic impact on the environment was enormous and one that had not been witnessed before. It took three months to control the oil leak and seal the well, at the end of which some 780,000 million cubic meters of oil had already leaked into the open ocean. BP recognizes that the oil spill continues to cost the company money in terms of environmental clean-up and legal proceedings (BP Plc., 2013).

According to Frynas (2012), such tragic events continue to attract the attention of countries that host oil companies owing to their potential impact on the country’s environmental heritage. The result has been the drafting of laws that affect oil and gas mining and the penalties that are to be paid should oil spills occur. At the same time, companies realize that oil spills are a costly affair. Not only does a company such as BP, pay substantial amounts in cleaning up the oil spill, but it also suffers reputational risk. In addition, the petroleum company stands to lose the much-prized license to operate within a country owing to a history of oil spills. Consequently, companies have become more abrasive in controlling oil spills.

2.6 Differences in developed and developing nations

The second aspect that has been addressed through voluntary and government action is that of the exercise of human rights (Crane, et al., 2013). In previous years, mining companies have been accused of providing their employees with poor working conditions such as subjecting them to extreme weather conditions and dangers from company operations. For example, an offshore mining platform exposes the employee to the weather elements of storms and the possibility of an on-site explosion hundreds of kilometers away from the nearest land port. Nations have been concerned over the vulgarities that some of their citizens might be exposed to, with the result being the enactment of laws meant to offer better-working conditions (Crane, et al., 2013). Petroleum companies are also aware of the reputational risk that might be suffered due to negative public limelight regarding the working conditions of their employees. Such a limelight might affect their attractiveness within the job market, which is a highly undesired situation.

According to Jamali (2007), a developed country is one that is characterized by strong institutions that regulate corporate and individual behavior. In this regard, a developed nation is one where the flow of resources is expected to be transparent and well-understood. In these nations, the role of the company towards its employees, the environment, and the society is understood by all. When there are shortcomings between performance and expectations, the avenues for correction are equally clear with the judicial system offering much of the remedy. This is beside immediate government action (Jamali & Mirshak, 2007). This is not to mention that developed nations are endowed with easily accessible resources such as communication and transport networks. Therefore, petroleum companies in developed nations offer CSR as part of a charity effort.

According to Spencer (2011), the situation in developing nations is different from that of the developed world. One of the main factors that characterize a developing world is a clear discord in the presence of infrastructure. While the developmental equivalent has a well-connected population, the developing nation has the infrastructure, but it is concentrated in one area or just a selected number of urban towns. Secondly, the developing nation lacks the clear institutions that are present in a developed world. Due to a gulf between the literate and the illiterate, it becomes easy for the politically connected to seek favors and do away with the rule of law, even when there are clear procedures to be followed (Spence, 2011). The result is that there is a gap between what is expected of a petroleum company and what is delivered. Unlike the developed case scenario, few challenge the status quo.

It is under the developing nation circumstances that the mantle of a company’s CSR is tested. Due to the presence of the chance to by-pass legal provisions, many petroleum companies can opt out of their obligations to the community and the government (Spence, 2011). In a case of Royal Dutch Shell in Nigeria, the company’s recognition that it is being associated with a corrupt and inefficient regime made it change its mode of operations. As from the 1980s, Royal Dutch Shell has made significant efforts to reduce environmental pollution and engage in community development efforts such as providing education and health facilities (Spence, 2011). The effectiveness of government against self-regulation in developed nations remains to be seen and is the subject of subsequent sections of this study.

3.0 Research methodology

3.1 Introduction

This segment of the paper reviews the research methodology used in the study. This involves looking at the research approach that will be used and the research design that will be used in the study. Overall, the main aim is to allow the collection and interpretation of information that will answer the research questions adequately.

3.2 Research approach

The research approach of any dissertation determines the underlying characteristics of the study that will be undertaken. The research approach first needs to determine whether it shall be inductive or deductive. An inductive study is a study that seeks to create a theory or a model that is different from previous models that have been generated by scholars. This is one of the most complicated research approaches available because validation of the model needs to be done. Alternatively, a deductive approach involves the review of the research questions or hypotheses of a topic based on collected information. The main aim of such a paper is answering the objectives of the paper. The theoretical framework in such a paper is based on information from previous scholars. This study uses information from the work of Milton Friedman in the research methodology and uses it as information to explain corporate social responsibility (Govaert, 2009, p. 23). There is no creation of a theory or model. This indicates that the study adopted is deductive in nature rather than an inductive study.

The second consideration that needs to be made is determining whether to use a primary of a secondary approach to the study. A primary study involves the collection of novel data that has yet to be used in a previous study. On the other hand, secondary data is data that has already been collected and used by other scholars in their work. Each of the different types of data has different advantages. Primary data is advantageous because it collects information that is specifically, used in the study. This means that the research questions determine the data collected. This improves the accuracy of the study since the data is specifically suited to answer the research questions. Despite this advantage, primary data is difficult to collect because it requires a lot of money and time. This reduces the reach of most primary studies due to funding and the access to information. Due to this, it is not the best when undertaking global studies from a university dissertation (Sarantakos, 2007, p. 31). Another problem is the risk of making mistakes during the data collection process. Data collection is difficult in a primary setting and errors can reduce the reliability if the primary data that has been collected. Secondary information also has specific strengths and detriments that are different. The first strength is the ease of collection of information. Secondary data is already available from other studies and the investigator only needs to select the information accurately. Secondly, any secondary study requires less time and money to collect as opposed to a primary study. This makes it especially useful in a dissertation setting where finances are limited to the student. The main detriment is the likelihood of propagating errors that were collected from previous studies. Any errors in primary data collection will be propagated in secondary research. However, this can be circumvented by the review of the primary data collection methods that were used in the study. Since the study seeks to determine the authenticity of the corporate social responsibility in the oil industry, a primary study is difficult because revenue and time to collect information from all or even one oil company is not available. For this reason, a secondary research approach is preferred as the research approach in the study.

3.3 Research design

After determining a research approach to be used, it is important to determine the design that will be used in the study. A secondary study is different from a primary study in terms of the research design that will be used in the study. In the case of a primary study, the research design would have been determined by either a focus group, survey or an experiment. In a secondary study, the different designs are either academic literature review of case study analysis. Case study analysis involves looking at specific companies, countries or situations to provide an explanation of the subject being investigated. The alternative is using academic literature based on topic (Bocarnea, et al., 2013, p. 23). This is less refined because it provides a general explanation of the subject rather than a specific analysis. For this reason, a case study analysis is used.

Case studies can be of two main types. The first type involves a review of one case study. This is called a single case study approach. This is effective when trying to explain success measures that can be undertaken based on an instance of success from one company. The main detriment of this type of case study is that it is not representative of an industry only a specific company. The alternative is a multiple case study. This involves looking at different companies and using the similarities as the baseline for the entire industry (Sapsford & Jupp, 2006, p. 21). This approach is favored in the study because the different methods of corporate social responsibility of different situations and companies will determine the social corporate responsibility of the entire industry. This extrapolation is required in the study.

3.4 Research method

There are different methods of research that can be used in case study analysis. Any case study can opt to use the qualitative or the quantitative method of secondary collection of information. A quantitative method of secondary research involves the collection of quantitative data. Quantitative data is empirical data that can be analyzed using mathematical software. The main benefit of this research method is the ease of data analysis. However, this information as many restrictions like the determination of parametric data. There is also a high risk of error propagation if the information collected was wrong. The alternative is a qualitative case study research. This involves the collection of qualitative information from case studies and then analyzing the underlying themes that already exist. This is more complicated than quantitative research (Vogt, 2010, p. 21). However, it is best suited for understanding abstract issues such as corporate social responsibility. This is the reason it is used in the research.

3.5 Data collection and analysis

Data collection involves looking at instances where corporate social responsibility was used by oil companies to deal with a disaster. This is reviewed to determine whether the measures taken were done to respond to extrinsic pressure or the measures were done based on genuine intrinsic needs to improve the social and physical environment of the oil company. An assessment will be done to determine whether government regulation would have been better than the self-regulating corporate social responsibility policies that the oil companies have adopted. This will determine the authenticity of the corporate social responsibility policies (Bergman, 2008, p. 23). Finally, an assessment will be done on the differences that occur in developed and developing countries. This will allow all the research questions to be adequately answered in the study.

3.6 Ethical considerations

Ethical considerations are important in all sections of a study. Ethical considerations are especially important when conducting primary studies involving human participants. However, the study uses secondary analysis, and the instances of human responses come from other academic papers. The only requirement is to ensure that the studies included had proper ethical considerations and permission to quote any human responses. Proper citing will ensure that the information is attributed to the right source.

4.0 Data Analysis

4.1 Introduction

The case study analysis that will be conducted will review the incidents that occurred in the past and the corporate social responsibility measures that have been put in place afterward. This will allow a look at the authenticity of the corporate social responsibility policies by companies in the oil industry.

4.2 Case studies

4.2.1 Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

The first case study is the Exxon Valdez Oil spill. This is the largest oil disaster that happened in the United States. Approximately 11 million gallons of crude oil were spilled into the ocean along the Alaskan coastline. The incident occurred in March as an oil tanker was traveling along the Prince William Sound reef in Alaska. The oil tanker ran aground and released millions of gallons of crude oil into the sea. The situation was further compounded by the fact that the disaster occurred a fair distance away from the coast (Guterman, 2009, p. 1558). The entire process cost the United States as well as the oil company billions of dollars in losses.

There are several issues that can be highlighted by the disaster. The first is the reasons that led to the disaster. Reports indicate that the oil disaster occurred when the captain allowed someone else to steer the ship because he was drunk at the time. The inquiry showed that most of the crew had been drinking prior to the report, and the third mate was the one at the wheel of the oil tanker (Guterman, 2009, p. 1558). The captain also had several cases of alcohol abuse, and this meant that he was a risk to the entire ship. In terms of due diligence, the captain should not have been allowed to control such a ship while still dealing with alcohol addiction problems.

The ramification of the disaster was the spilling of over 1.2 million barrels of oil into the ocean. This affected the area in three main ways. The first was the environmental destruction that is caused by the oil spill. Oil restricts oxygen from entering the water. 1.2 million barrels covers a significant distance from the ocean to restrict a large portion of the aquatic life from adequate oxygen. This leads to loss of life and a disruption of the food chain. In addition to this, oil is sticky and thus makes the skin of animals and birds different. The mobility of these animals if affected and millions of these animals die of drowning. In addition to this, fishing is the livelihood of any of the people living along the Alaskan coast. Disruption of the fishing for extended periods of time led to the loss of livelihood of hundreds of families that rely directly or indirectly on fishing (Guterman, 2009, p. 1558). Thus negatively impacts the amount of information that is already in existence.

The reaction of the oil companies was to use the Alyeska organization to ensure that there was fast and effective clean-up of the oil that had been spilled. The organization quickly assumed responsibility and set measures where the oil would be either siphoned or burned as fast as possible. However, the measures that were being taken were not adequate. The United States government took control of the operation and conducted the bulk of the clean-up process. Immediately, investigations were started to determine the exact cause of the oil spill and the possible ways of resolving the situation. The agencies involved in the clean-up process sought to either use chemicals, mechanically collect the oil or burning the oil to preserve the population. The different areas were subdivided, and the oil cleaned based on the nature of the area as the priority (Ott, 2009, p. 248). However, the loss of animal life was the greatest because the reduced oxygen absorption greatly affected breathing. Many of the microscopic plants and animals that provide the backbone of the area were also affected. The following table gives the perceived risk that is associated with the Exxon Valdez oil spill in studies of respondents perceptions.

The Exxon Valdez disaster is one of the most important parts of the history of corporate social responsibility in the oil industry. This is seen by the massive fine that any organization in America has ever been fined. This allowed compensation of the manpower and the loss of revenue among the people in Alaska. This is the first time that the oil industry found itself losing money due to corporate irresponsibility. This meant that corporate social responsibility now had to be taken seriously in order to avoid any financial losses (Ott, 2009, p. 248). This provides one of the fundamental pressures that are required. Stakeholders found themselves in a position of power where they could dictate policy. The effect on stakeholders psychological stress due to lack of earnings is shown in the table below.

Additionally, the government took a more involved role in the regulation of the oil industry. In 1990, following the disaster, Congress set the Oil Pollution Act. This act required the United States coast guard to toughen the regulations on oil tanker owners and oil tankers, as well as the operators. In addition to this, an oil fund was put to deal with similar disasters in future. The result was the toughening of oil tanker hulls as well as more involves monitoring of the oil tanker operators. This seems to be a good step towards corporate social responsibility in the oil industry. The question is whether this is extrinsic or intrinsic in nature. In the first place, it was evidence that the captain has a long standing problem with alcohol abuse that the oil company knew. However, this was left unchecked despite the risk that it posed. In addition to this, oil is known to be an environmentally harmful substance. Oil tankers need to be well protected to ensure that the material does not reach the environment. This would have been done without the pressure that came from stakeholders after the disaster. However, the oil companies were simply afraid to increase the cost of business. This was done at the expense of not only the environment, but also the people who live off the ocean (Ott, 2009, p. 248). This indicates that there was no intrinsic motivation by company shareholders before pressure from external stakeholders was introduced. It is important to realize that the disaster did highlight the ability of government regulation to increase corporate social responsibility where self–regulation was not able to be done. The United States is also a developed country, and the government can apply greater pressure on the oil companies.

4.2.2 The Piper Alpha disaster

Another great disaster that has occurred in recent years is the Piper Alpha oil disaster. The disaster occurred when one of the hydrogen oil production platforms exploded killing hundreds of workers. The nature of the disaster is complicated. The exact cause of the explosions is not known. However, the investigations indicated that there was a change in the maintenance pump after the initial one had been removed. The alternative pump may have failed to operate correctly and thus led to the ultimate explosion that started the chain reaction (Hull, 2002, p. 435). It is assumed that the initial pump explosion occurred at 10:00pm. Soon there were other explosions that occurred from the crude oil and natural gas that was in the organization.

The initial explosion disabled the control room. This meant that the main channels of communication were closed off. The water deluge system on the platform was also ineffective, and this meant that it could not be operated to deal with the explosion. The normal recommendation in case of an explosion is a congregation of the workers in the gallery area. Many of the workers moved to that section of the platform. However, there were flames and smoke in that section of the platform. This eliminated the expected method of evacuation through life boats or helicopters. The smoke was increasing, and many of the survivors had to crawl out of the gallery and jump into the water. Most of those who died were still on the gallery platform waiting for evacuation. In total, 167 employees perished in the platform disaster. In terms of corporate responsibility, there are many issues that were not done according to plan. The first issue was the slow response of the organization in mobilizing evacuation. Occidental Company, the oil company that operated the platform, denied any responsibility by saying that the set measures of safety that were above board (Ott, 2009, p. 248). However, these security measures were responsible for most of the deaths. There was only one evacuation site on the platform. This backfired because the fire, was concentrated around that section. Over 70 percent of those who perished were in the gallery area.

The second problem arises from the nature of the platforms. The company’s platforms were interconnected, and this meant that the Piper Alpha was being fed with oil from the other platforms. Common sense dictates that in case of a fire, the other platforms are supposed to be closed to reduce the flow of oil and natural gas to the other platforms. However, the company kept pumping oil and natural gas. This fed the flames and worsened the situation. Outright, Occidental denied any responsibility for the disaster despite the gaps in the security system that existed. First the water deluge system was out of commission for several months, despite the ever-present risk of disaster. There was no corporate social responsibility by the Occidental Company (Hull, 2002, p. 434). This indicated that despite public pressure, there was still no intrinsic need for the company to take responsibility. The judiciary did not press any charges on the company mainly because the energy minister at the time had close ties with the oil industry.

It is important to review whether incidences of disaster had caused any change in the security procedures. A further investigation shows that Occidental company has suffered two prior disasters that had almost led to similar disasters. In 1984, the company had to evacuate an entire platform due to a similar leak. In 1987, there was another factor incident that did not yield any resolution. Several elements of the two prior disasters such as the failure of the water deluge systems were still present in the 1988 disaster. This clearly indicates that despite the repeated risk that existed, there was no major change in the company safety policies. This shows that there was no intrinsic pressure to adhere to corporate social responsibility by the company (Hull, 2002, p. 434). The company was also shielded from external pressure by the decision to forgo charging of the company officials.

Clearly the failures that existed should have at least led to charges of corporate manslaughter due to the negligence of certain key aspects. It is also important to note the power that oil companies have due to their financial capabilities. While Scotland cannot be considered to be developing, it is less developed than Britain and other areas of Europe. This means that there is still an inadequate representation of stakeholders in policy making and regulation reinforcement. This is a clear indication that the development of an area influenced the extrinsic pressure that can be applied to companies in the oil industries. When compared to the Exxon disaster, it is worrying that there were more human fatalities but the difference in the external pressure is less than adequate to deal with the disaster (Hull, 2002, p. 434). The irony is that even to date, Occidental claims to be a company that always uses social responsibility yet it failed to provide any compensation for the victims of the fire beyond the mandated corporate amounts. In addition to this, the government gave the company huge tax reliefs to allow the rebuilding of the platform. In a way, the United Kingdom taxpayers indirectly funded the rebuilding and any losses that the company had. This is clearly not adhering to social or corporate responsibility. Currently, Occidental does not mention the disaster in its database.

4.2.3 The violation of human rights in Nigeria

One of the best examples of corporate social responsibility for the lack of this responsibility is the 1990’s involvement of Shell in Nigeria. Nigeria is one of the largest producers of oil around the world. There are over 3 million barrels of oil produced each day from the country. Nigeria relies on a lot on oil with over 65 percent of the GDP coming from oil. In terms of population, Nigeria is one of the most densely populated countries around the world. The country has over 130 million and a rural demographic of over 55 percent (Hemming, 1996, p. 393). One of these rural communities is the Ogoni community with approximately 500,000 people. The community is predominantly agricultural with the majority of their activities being centered on fishing or agriculture. The area where the Ogoni resides is in the oil-rich Niger Delta that has the largest oil deposits in the country. Shell is the main company that operates near community, and it has acquired the land using the Land Use Act of 1978 that allows multinational corporations to acquire land that will be used for operations.

The main issue arises from the method used in the disposal of unwanted gas and oil. There are numerous methods but the most effective methods are expensive and costly. The cheapest method is flaring where the unwanted oil is burned. This is the method that Shell Company adopted in the Niger Delta. However, this is done at a larger scale than in other areas of the country. In the United States, only 0.6 percent of the gas is flared. There is 1.5 percent in Russia, 5 percent in Mexico and 20 percent in Saudi Arabia. However, the rate of flaring in Nigeria is 76 percent. This indicates a significantly higher percentage than most of the other countries. The main problem with flaring is that it releases large amounts of carbon and methane into the atmosphere. This leads to acid rain as well as increased global warming. In the Niger Delta, Shell burns these oil flares for 24 hours. This creates a constant problem for those who live near these flares due to extreme heat and the damage that the heat causes to the crops (Hemming, 1996, p. 393). The acid rain then causes greater issues when it rains making many farm areas barren due to the excess chemicals that are spewed. Sociology scholars have clearly highlighted the plight of the Ogoni due to the problems that arise from the use of flaring in the Niger Delta. The following images give a description of the condition that the Ogoni people go through due to the flaring.

Most communities in Africa use rainwater as a source of drinking water. However, in the Niger Delta, this is not possible because the rain contains harmful chemicals that are detrimental to the health of the Ogoni people. Apart from flaring, there are numerous oil spills that occur due to lack of proper maintenance of the oil pipes. In 1992, a pipeline destroyed a river that was the source of drinking water for several villages. Life has been destroyed in the river due to the policies that are in place in the organization. Over 40 percent of the oil spills that occur in Shell occur in the Niger Delta. This indicates that the rates are significantly higher than in other areas.

4.2.3.1 Human rights violations

There are several human rights violations that have occurred in the Niger Delta. Due to the worsening condition of the quality of life of the people in the Ogoni community, there were peaceful protests by the people in an attempt to seek the intervention of the government. However, the response of the government to pressure from Shell was to create a unit known as the mobile police to tackle this peaceful protests. The protests led to the death of over 100 people with reports by the Human Rights Watch indicating that Shell provided the police with weapons that were used in the massacre. The Ogoni community responded by creating MOSOP (Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People). The MOSOP formed an Ogoni Bill of Rights that were tabled to the Nigerian government and the United Nations. The bill also contained a statement that accused Shell of failing to share economic resources, causing environmental degradation and reducing the quality of life of the Ogoni community. This led to international condemnation by the United Nations Human Rights Commission. When the Nigerian government realized that the United Nations had also been provided with the bill a military force was created by that would specifically deal with any of the prosecutors (Hemming, 1996, p. 393). The heavy military presence led to the death of over 2,000 civilians and the destructions of over 35 villages in the Niger Delta. The problem became so bad that Shell had to discontinue operations for an extended period.

The leader of the MOSOP was considered a threat and charges were fabricated against him and the other leaders of the MOSOP. They were charged with conspiracy to commit murder. The charge carried a life imprisonment sentence. Despite appeals from major world leaders, including Nelson Mandela, the eight were hanged in 1995 (Hemming, 1996, p. 393). There was a worldwide outcry of the events along with public condemnation of Shell Company for its human rights violations and the involvement in the problem.

4.2.3.2 Shell’s solution to the condemnation

Despite the protracted issues between Shell and the Ogoni people, the first change started when the company started losing market share because of the international outcry due to the issue. Public opinion polls in developed countries showed that Shell was negatively viewed mainly due to the belief that it had negative human rights and environmental policies. This started to take a toll on share prices and business with other companies. More businesses opted for competitors rather than Shell. This caused a massive loss to the company. The company responded by taking measures to resolve any environmental damages that were caused in the past. This involved drastic reduction in flaring as well as clean-up of oil spills that occurred in the Ogoni area of the Niger Delta. This marks an intrinsic push to adhere to corporate social responsibility due to the loss of economic value of the company (Hemming, 1996, p. 393). One of the major changes was to allow SustainAbility to control the corporate social responsibility aspect of the organization. This assured stakeholders that measures were being put to deal with the issues that Shell had been accused of. SustainAbility pushed for the creation of a transparent approach that listened to what stakeholders had to say. This means that the grievances that had been ignored from the Ogoni community were now being taken under consideration. This involved reviewed of the health and safety regulations of the organization as well as a review of the self-imposed targets that Shell had set to reduce negative environmental impact.

Another measure taken by SustainAbility is to include stakeholders in the process of environmental conservation. Advertising campaigns were created targeting the Ogoni community and other stakeholders of the efforts that Shell was making to improve the standards of living of the society.

It can be clearly seen that the main driver of the change in Shell’s actions in the Niger Delta is the loss of revenue. This is in line with the assertion that shareholders will only make changes when it economically benefits them. Shell was using a lot of money to protect the oil wells as well supply the military with weapons. This money would have easily been converted to helping the Ogoni Community. In addition to this, many of the measures used in developed countries such as regulated flaring were upheld in Nigeria because the government was easier to bribe and convince of the importance. Ultimately, this is a clear indication of what can happen without any regulation.

4.2.4 BP’s Global Warming acknowledgment

One of the recent and most intrinsic shows of corporate social responsibility is shown by BP and their acceptance of their role in the global warming crisis. The company was the first major oil company to this and make deliberate changes to resolve the growing problem. This was widely unexpected in the oil industry since most companies were adamant that they were not the cause of the problem, but rather it was a result of human consumption. The major change that occurred was that BP had forced all the other oil companies to admit their role in environmental and check their environmental policies. One of the most important pledges was to reduce the company’s carbon dioxide emission to 10 percent in twenty years. However, BP was able to do this in less than four years. With the world taking global warming more seriously, there were many who applauded the efforts that BP had done but many critics in the oil industry had asserted that the move would have negative economic impacts on the company (Budzianowski, 2011, p. 293). While this was true, the public acclaim had increased the popularity of BP to counter this issue. The country also introduced the carbon trading that has now been adopted by many developed countries. This is a clear indication that the oil industry has the capability of being involved in the fight for environmental conservation.

4.3 Discussion

There are several clear issues that can be seen from the case studies that have been analyzed. The first is the distinct difference between shareholder perception and stakeholder perception. Shareholders view the business as an income generating vehicle. On the other hand, stakeholders view the business as a resource exploiting entity. This means that the stakeholders seek to ensure that the resources used are not over-exploited or endangered by the oil company. It is difficult for any business to self-regulate. This is especially more difficult in the oil industry where the profits are large. The lack of self-regulation is clear in the platform fire where Occidental had two more incidents prior to the fire but failed to make any safety measures that would reduce the problem. In addition to this, the company continued to pipe oil and gas during the period, and this resulted in the acceleration of the fire beyond the limits that were expected before. In the Exxon Valdez oil spill, the company sought to siphon the fuel mechanically out of the ocean in an attempt to save on fuel (British Broadcasting Corporation, 2014). However, this was deemed ineffective, and the coast guard had to use other methods. In the Niger Delta, Shell Company did not listen to the grievances of the Ogoni community and opted for the more dangerous but cost effective method of flaring. This is a clear indication where the economic interests are pursued in the interest of the environment or community around the company. This means that the shareholders who are policy makers in the organization do not consider intrinsic corporate social responsibility from the onset.

This is compounded by the fact that all cases of corporate social responsibility changes to the policy occur after a major disaster. The change in hull strength of oil tankers and the strictness of the employee selection was done only after the Exxon Valdez oil spill. The Shell change occurred after many years of ignoring the plight of the Ogoni community. Only when the company started to reflect losses economically was the policy changed in favor of more strict methods. This indicates that most of the corporate social responsibility changes were as a result of pressure from stakeholders or the international community. This is a clear indication that the policies that are being set in place are more reactive than proactive in nature. This indicates an aspect of public relations in those campaigns. However, there are a few cases such as the BP global warming acknowledgment that indicate that some companies are proactive. However, this is only one of few proactive cases (Bergman, 2008). A conclusion can be drawn that most of the corporate governance procedures adopted by oil companies are reactive rather than proactive.

Finally, violations of social or environmental issues seem to be worse in less developed countries. The Exxon Valdez issues were resolved in a short time while the situation in Nigeria took several years before Shell even admitted its flaws. In addition to this, the change occurred after the developed world took notice and made public condemnation to Shell. This indicates that corporate social responsibility policies in developed countries are different from those in less developed countries. In addition to this, there was blatant bribery by the company along with active help by supply weapons that led to the innocent death of over 2,000 members of the Ogoni community. Developing countries have leaders who are more easily corrupted, and the voice of less prominent members of the community are ignored. This is the reason the Nigerian government came to the aid of Shell rather than resolve the issue amicably with its people (Brown & Forster, 2013). This is an indication that oil corporation have different standards for developing and developed countries. Developing countries are still yet to reach the level where stakeholder opinions are taken seriously.

Finally, the case studies have shown the power that regulation has in the oil industry. Before the Exxon Valdez period, there was little regulation on oil tankers. However, the onset of regulation has streamlined the policies and improved corporate social responsibility in the oil industry. In addition to this, it is clear that areas with low regulation like Scotland and Nigeria were prone to more socially and environmental practices (Hemming, 1996). This is a clear indication that despite the calls for self-regulation, there is a need for regulation that ensures that the rights and freedoms of individuals are maintained while ensuring that the environment is protected regardless of the area of the location. It is clear that corporate social responsibility reports are increasing as shown in the figure below, but the reason is may be for public relations.

5.0 Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Conclusions

The results of the study indicate that corporate social responsibility in the oil industry is different from what is expected in theory. The objective was to determine whether oil companies are motivated by disaster and extrinsic stakeholder pressure to adopt corporate social responsibility or whether they are motivated by intrinsic desire. It is clear that companies in the oil industry are motivated by extrinsic pressure rather than intrinsic desire to be more socially responsible in their practices. As highlighted in the case studies, most of the major changes that have occurred in corporate social responsibility in the oil industry was due to pressure from stakeholders. In the Exxon Valdez issue, the pressure from people in Alaska as well as environmental groups led oil companies adopting better oil transportation safety measures. Similarly, the pressure in Nigeria from the international community led Shell Company to shifting its approach to more stakeholder and environmentally friendly methods despite years of pressure from the Ogoni community. The theoretical framework highlighted that shareholders who are the main decision makers cannot intrinsically increase their liabilities through corporate social responsibility. However, when stakeholder pressure leads to economic loss either through fines or through loss or market, the shareholders are willing to engage in corporate social responsibility measures. In truth, this simply shows that the oil industry, mainly uses corporate social responsibility as a public relations gimmick to restore public image rather than as an intrinsically motivated subject (McKibben, 2012). However, there are exceptions such as BP’s unpressured move to reduce carbon emission. While this was unpopular with other oil companies, the company proceeded to reduce its carbon emission. This is one of the few exceptions.

The second objective of the study was to determine whether corporate social responsibility in oil companies is worse in developing countries. This is answered by comparing the response that oil companies have had after disasters show that in the United States the companies quickly took responsibility and tried to resolve the situation. In Scotland, which is slightly less developed than America, Occidental refuses to claim liability. This indicates the change in corporate social responsibility based on the level of development. The situation is worse in developing countries. The Ogoni community in Nigeria opposed the environmental degradation and loss of quality of life due to Shell’s 24 hour flaring policy. However, Shell responded by using connections in the government to fight against the Ogoni. Despite the loss of over 2,000 Ogoni community members, Shell only agreed to change policies when the company faced international condemnation and loss of market share (Spence, 2011). This clearly shows that oil companies take advantage of the lack of voice of stakeholders in developing countries.

The final objective is to determine whether to determine whether government regulation would bring better results as opposed to social corporate responsibility in the oil industry. In developed countries, pressure from stakeholders has led to the development of laws and regulations that clearly control the rate of environmental degradation. However, developing countries are not able to provide such strict measures to ensure that environmental degradation is reduced. The lack of regulation makes them more prone to issues of exploitation. This means that self-regulating social corporate responsibility in the oil industry does not guarantee environmental conservation or adherence to human rights. This means that measures of regulation should be set to provide a basis for corporate social responsibility.

5.2 Recommendations

There are a few recommendations that can offer to allow better corporate social responsibility in the oil industry. The first measure is the creation of a body that ensures that oil companies infringe a specified minimum environmental degradation measure and no human freedoms and rights. This will ensure that the oil companies compensate the communities around the region adequately in a fair manner. There should also be set penalties for any environmental damage or human rights violation that occurs. This should be global to ensure that even people in developing countries are protected. Finally, the minimum limits should not be included in corporate social responsibility. This will mean that social responsibility is done intrinsically, beyond the economic loss expected.

5.3 Recommendations for future studies

The results have indicated that most of the corporate social responsibility policies set by companies in the oil industry are reactive, and only seek to improve company image. A study should be undertaken to determine the exact minimum mandatory social responsibility measures that can be placed in the oil industry.

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