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Concept: Strategic management


An optimal balance between efficient exploitation of available resources and creative exploration of alternatives is critical for adaptation and survival. Previous studies associated these behavioral drives with, respectively, the dopaminergic mesocorticolimbic system and frontopolar-intraparietal networks. We study the activation of these systems in two age and gender-matched groups of experienced decision-makers differing in prior professional background, with the aim to understand the neural bases of individual differences in decision-making efficiency (performance divided by response time). We compare brain activity of entrepreneurs (who currently manage the organization they founded based on their venture idea) and managers (who are constantly involved in making strategic decisions but have no venture experience) engaged in a gambling-task assessing exploitative vs. explorative decision-making. Compared with managers, entrepreneurs showed higher decision-making efficiency, and a stronger activation in regions of frontopolar cortex (FPC) previously associated with explorative choice. Moreover, activity across a network of regions previously linked to explore/exploit tradeoffs explained individual differences in choice efficiency. These results suggest new avenues for the study of individual differences in the neural antecedents of efficient decision-making.

Concepts: Psychology, Neuron, Comparison, Brain, Critical thinking, Human brain, Strategic management, Experience


Marine reserves are an effective tool for protecting biodiversity locally, with potential economic benefits including enhancement of local fisheries, increased tourism, and maintenance of ecosystem services. However, fishing communities often fear short-term income losses associated with closures, and thus may oppose marine reserves. Here we review empirical data and develop bioeconomic models to show that the value of marine reserves (enhanced adjacent fishing + tourism) may often exceed the pre-reserve value, and that economic benefits can offset the costs in as little as five years. These results suggest the need for a new business model for creating and managing reserves, which could pay for themselves and turn a profit for stakeholder groups. Our model could be expanded to include ecosystem services and other benefits, and it provides a general framework to estimate costs and benefits of reserves and to develop such business models.

Concepts: Biodiversity, Economics, Ecosystem, Management, Strategic management, Sustainability, Ecological economics, Business process modeling



Mass casualty events and disasters, both natural and human-generated, occur frequently around the world and can generate scores of injured or ill victims in need of resources. Of the available medical supplies, oxygen remains the critical consumable resource in disaster management. Strategic management of oxygen supplies in disaster scenarios remains a priority. Hospitals have large supplies of liquid oxygen and a supply of compressed gas oxygen cylinders that allow several days of reserve, but a large influx of patients from a disaster can strain these resources. Most backup liquid oxygen supplies are attached to the main liquid system and supply line. In the event of damage to the main system, the reserve supply is rendered useless. The Strategic National Stockpile supplies medications, medical supplies, and equipment to disaster areas, but it does not supply oxygen. Contracted vendors can deliver oxygen to alternate care facilities in disaster areas, in the form of concentrators, compressed gas cylinders, and liquid oxygen. Planning for oxygen needs following a disaster still presents a substantial challenge, but alternate care facilities have proven to be valuable in relieving pressure from the mass influx of patients into hospitals, especially for those on home oxygen who require only an electrical source to power their oxygen concentrator.

Concepts: Oxygen, Medicine, Management, Strategic management, Gas, Disaster, Compressed natural gas, Oxygen concentrator


This department highlights change management strategies that may be successful in strategically planning and executing organizational change initiatives. With the goal of presenting practical approaches helpful to nurse leaders advancing organizational change, content includes evidence-based projects, tools, and resources that mobilize and sustain organizational change initiatives. In this article, the author explores personal resilience as an important individual characteristic that affects team functioning and thus organizational adaptability to change. The important role of resilience in strategic leadership for change is presented along with suggestions for evaluating and developing resilience.

Concepts: Management, Strategic management, Positive psychology, Leadership, Strategy, Project management, Planning, Plan


European countries are facing increasing pressures on their water resources despite stringent regulations and systematic efforts on environmental protection. In this context, research and innovation play a strategic role reinforcing the efficiency of water policies. The present study provides a multilevel assessment of research and innovation practices in the field of water resource management in southern European countries and regions (more specifically; Cyprus, Albania, Poitou-Charentes in France, Andalusia in Spain and the North of Portugal). The analysis was based on a strategic framework aimed at gaining an insight of the current constraints, as well as of the existing and future technological solutions for a better water resource management. The triple helix model proved to be a useful analytical framework for assessing the efforts of different groups towards a common goal. The analysis proved the existence of a significant evolution in the use of technological tools to assist decision-making processes in integrated river basin management in all regions. Nevertheless, the absence of formal channels for knowledge and data exchange between researchers and water resource managers complicates the formers involvement in the decision-making process regarding water allocation. Both researchers and consultants emphasize the low availability of data, together with the need to advance on water resource economics as relevant constraints in the field. The SWOT analysis showed similar concerns among the participating regions and provided a battery of effective projects that resulted in the preparation of a Joint Action Plan.

Concepts: Water, Hydrology, Management, Strategic management, Europe, Water resources, Resource allocation, Resource management


Sustained destructive leadership behaviours are associated with negative outcomes that produce serious workplace problems, yet there is scant research into how followers effectively cope with toxic leader behaviours. Despite numerous attempts to develop typologies of coping behaviours, there remains much to learn, especially in relation to this specific workplace stressor. This mixed method research investigates the coping strategies reported by 76 followers to cope with the psychological, emotional and physical consequences of their leader’s adverse behaviour. Coping instances were categorized using two existing theoretical coping frameworks, and the ability of these frameworks to explain responses to real-world experiences with toxic leadership are discussed. Common coping strategies reported included assertively challenging the leader, seeking social support, ruminating, taking leave and leaving the organization. Organizational interventions to increase effectiveness of follower coping with the impact of toxic leadership are also discussed. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Concepts: Psychology, Sociology, Management, Strategic management, Behavior, Leadership, Human behavior, Toxic leader


Abstract Purpose: The study brings together three aspects rarely observed at once in assistive technology (AT) surveys: (i) the assessment of user interaction/satisfaction with AT and service delivery, (ii) the motivational analysis of AT abandonment, and (iii) the management/design evaluation of AT delivery services. Methods: 15 health professionals and 4 AT experts were involved in modelling and assessing four AT Local Health Delivery Service (Centres) in Italy through a SWOT analysis and a Cognitive Walkthrough. In addition 558 users of the same Centres were interviewed in a telephone survey to rate their satisfaction and AT use. Results: The overall AT abandonment was equal to 19.09%. Different Centres' management strategies resulted in different percentages of AT disuse, with a range from 12.61% to 24.26%. A significant difference between the declared abandonment and the Centres' management strategies (p = 0.012) was identified. A strong effect on abandonment was also found due to professionals' procedures (p = 0.005) and follow-up systems (p = 0.002). Conclusions: The user experience of an AT is affected not only by the quality of the interaction with the AT, but also by the perceived quality of the Centres in support and follow-up. Implications for Rehabilitation AT abandonment surveys provide useful information for modelling AT assessment and delivery process. SWOT and Cognitive Walkthrough analyses have shown suitable methods for exploring limits and advantages in AT service delivery systems. The study confirms the relevance of person centredness for a successful AT assessment and delivery process.

Concepts: Evaluation, Effect, Affect, Cognition, Management, Strategic management, Thought, Marketing


Various technologies have been deployed in household devices or micro-water treatment plants for mitigating fluoride and arsenic, and thereby provide safe and affordable drinking water in low-income countries. While the technologies have improved considerably, organizations still face challenges in making them financially sustainable. Financial sustainability questions the business models behind these water technologies. This article makes three contributions to business models in the context of fluoride and arsenic mitigation. Firstly, we describe four business models: A) low-value devices given away to people living in extreme poverty, B) high-value devices sold to low-income customers, C) communities as beneficiaries of micro-water treatment plants and D) entrepreneurs as franchisees for selling water services and highlight the emergence of hybrid business models. Secondly, we show current business model innovations such as cost transparency & cost reductions, secured & extended water payments, business diversification and distribution channels. Thirdly, we describe skills and competencies as part of capacity building for creating even more business model innovations. Together, these three contributions will create more awareness of the role of business models in scaling-up water treatment technologies.

Concepts: Poverty, Economics, Strategic management, World Bank, Marketing, Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Business model


The pressure to deliver quality care with finite resources means that dealing with single-symptom conditions like tinnitus in an efficient and individualized manner has never been more important. Both primary and secondary care practitioners have an obligation to explore efficient delivery of simple management pathways. Commissioners of health care are in a unique position to affect evidence-based strategic change in the management of uncomplicated tinnitus. This study is an attempt to explore one such option. We present the outcomes of a tinnitus patient pathway designed for one-stop management, thereby minimizing unnecessary additional appointments.

Concepts: Health care, Cohort study, Clinical trial, Quality control, Management, Strategic management, Design management, Evidence-based management