Print ISSN: 2204-1990

Online ISSN: 1323-6903

Volume 20, Issue 1

Volume 20, Issue 1, Summer and Autumn 2014

The Victorian Government’s prison privatisation project (1992-2010): The pathway to cost efficiency? A longitudinal analysis

Valarie J. Sands, Graeme A. Hodge

Journal of Contemporary Issues in Business and Government, 2014, Volume 20, Issue 1, Pages 7-26

This article evaluates the operational efficiency of the Victorian prison system since the introduction of the neoliberal prison privatisation policy in 1992 through to the period of the next Government (from 1999), ending in 2010. The analysis explores the origin of the Victorian prison system’s reform, before focussing on an evaluation of the prison privatisation policy and the prison system’s consequent transition from a public to a mixed public-private system. This partially-privatised system comprised various combinations of public and private management and infrastructure. One of the Government’s dominant pro-privatisation promises was that introducing private sector competition to the prison system would ensure a more cost-efficient prison system. This study investigates the policy claim that competition and privatisation would yield cost savings for the prison system. The findings indicate that whilst significant cost savings were achieved in the period shortly after privatisation reforms occurred, longer term costs rose significantly as well. Overall, then, Government policy promises about efficiency gains associated with prison privatisations were not realised in the long-term

What factors are perceived to influence consideration of IFRS adoption by Vietnamese policymakers?

Duc Hong Thi Phan

Journal of Contemporary Issues in Business and Government, 2014, Volume 20, Issue 1, Pages 27-40

International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) developed by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) are designed to be a single high quality set of global accounting standards. IFRS were originally developed to serve the listed companies in developed capital markets. However, IFRS are increasingly being adopted by emerging economies, disregarding the concerns of the relevance and appropriateness of IFRS to those economies. It has been argued that emerging economies had little choice but to proceed with IFRS upon pressures from external forces. This paper users survey evidence to examine the perceptions of Vietnamese accountants regarding pressures for IFRS adoption on Vietnamese policymakers. Although the Ministry of Finance of Vietnam announced its intention to align Vietnamese accounting legislation with IFRS in November 2013; they have not yet determined the roadmap and pathway for IFRS adoption or convergence. The findings may allow the accounting practitioners, educators, and policy makers to prepare themselves for the change that Vietnam might pursue regarding IFRS.

Organisational Paradoxes of Local E-government

Nita Cherry

Journal of Contemporary Issues in Business and Government, 2014, Volume 20, Issue 1, Pages 41-57

This article explores the complexities of realising the full potential of local e-government through the lens of paradox. In developed nations, this sector has been characterised as being initially slow, and now very variable, in coming to grips with both the opportunities and challenges of e-government. Indeed, it has been argued that e-government crystallises the complex interdependencies and uncertainties of the sector more generally, challenging the power of expert knowledge and rational reform. Some particular examples of paradoxical dynamics are suggested that highlight the dynamic organisational capabilities needed to sustain e-government

South Korean Trade Strategies in the Post Global Financial Crisis

Sang-Chul Park

Journal of Contemporary Issues in Business and Government, 2014, Volume 20, Issue 1, Pages 59-76

Korea has developed rapidly since the 1960s to become one of the four Asian tiger economies. Korea is an example to other nations of how a developing country can develop its economy rapidly and become industrialized. Its development strategy has mainly been based on an export oriented trade policy. As a result, its trade volume has increased from USD1 billion at the beginning of the 1960s to USD1 trillion in 2011, which is a 1,000 time increase within five decades. However, the Korean economy has experienced turbulence as well as positive changes. It has faced severe economic crises such as the Asian financial crisis in 1997 and the global financial crisis in 2008. This paper discusses Korea’s trade policy and the strategies utilized over the last five decades to develop the national economy. It also explores how the government reacted and adapted its policy when the economy was hit by external economic crises. Moreover, it investigates and analyses the role that trade policy and strategy has played in developing the nation’s sustainability.

Learning City-Regions Revisited: A New Way Forward

Bruce Wilson

Journal of Contemporary Issues in Business and Government, 2014, Volume 20, Issue 1, Pages 77-87

Research and policy linking learning with place has been used widely over the past two decades to describe strategies which enable communities, cities and regions to reinvent themselves in the wake of industrial or other decline. When faced with significant economic and social challenges, this has been a way of encouraging stakeholders to rethink the resources and opportunities available to invigorate the local economy and, in particular, to promote employment growth. ‘Learning’ has been recognised as a critical element of the processes through which key organisations and people invent new responses to the local challenges. However, after a decade or so of great activity, use of the concept of the learning ‘place’ (cityregion, as it is identified here) has become less common, and theoretical critique of the concept has become stronger. Yet it is readily apparent that the fundamental interest in knowledge and its application in place continues apace, such that we now find literature engaged with ‘knowledge cities’ and ‘smart’ cities coming to the fore. This paper reviews the ‘learning city-region’ concept, and the implications of current debates. While the conceptualisation has been problematic, it continues to offer important insights into the ways in which economic development depends on knowledge and learning, well beyond a narrowly construed individual skills formation agenda.

Contributors biographies

Dr Valarie Sands, Professor Graeme Hodge, Dr Duc Hong Thi Phan, Professor Nita Cherry, Professor Sang-Chul Park, Professor Bruce Wilson, Dr Helena Liu

Journal of Contemporary Issues in Business and Government, 2014, Volume 20, Issue 1, Pages 93-94