Scielo RSS <![CDATA[South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences ]]> vol. 13 num. 2 lang. pt <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>Factors affecting forward pricing behaviour: Implications of alternative regression model specifications</b>]]> Price risk associated with maize production became a reason for concern in South Africa only after the deregulation of the agricultural commodities markets in the mid-1990s, when farmers became responsible for marketing their own crops. Although farmers can use, inter alia, the cash forward contracting and/or the derivatives market to manage price risk, few farmers actually participate in forward pricing. A similar reluctance to use forward pricing methods is also found internationally. A number of different model specifications have been used in previous research to model forward pricing behaviour which is based on the assumption that the same variables influence both the adoption and the quantity decision. This study compares the results from a model specification which models forward pricing behaviour in a single-decision framework with the results from modelling the quantity decision conditional to the adoption decision in a two-step approach. The results suggest that substantially more information is obtained by modelling forward pricing behaviour as two separate decisions rather than a single decision. Such information may be valuable in educational material compiled to educate farmers in the effective use of forward pricing methods in price risk management. Modelling forward pricing behaviour as two separate decisions is thus a more effective means of modelling forward pricing behaviour than modelling it as a single decision. <![CDATA[<b>Econometric estimation of Armington elasticities for selected agricultural products in South africa</b>]]> Price transmission behaviour is used to model the impacts of different trade regimes; if this behaviour is not modelled correctly, the trade impacts can be either under- or overestimated. Due to the lack of elasticities of substitution pertaining to selected imported and domestically produced agricultural products in South Africa, 'Armington' elasticities, using quarterly data from 1995-2006 and three different models, based on the time series properties of the data, are estimated in this paper. Considering the long-run elasticity results, soyabeans (whether broken or not) and meat of bovine animals (frozen) are the most sensitive import products, followed by maize, meat of bovine animals (fresh or chilled), sunflower seeds, and wheat and meslin. Regarding the short-run elasticity, soyabeans are the most sensitive import product, followed by meat of bovine animals (fresh or chilled); meat of swine (fresh, chilled or frozen) is the least sensitive import product. <![CDATA[<b>Application of the contingent valuation method to estimate the willingness-to-pay for restoring indigenous vegetation in Underberg, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa</b>]]> This study estimates the willingness-to-pay (WTP) for a project (i.e. the Working for Water Programme) aimed at removing alien vegetation and restoring indigenous vegetation in Underberg, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. The WTP estimate reflects the benefit of preference for indigenous vegetation over alien vegetation. In a survey, a questionnaire was administered to 260 households in the Underberg region during September 2005. It was deduced that the mean WTP for the project was R21.12 in 2005 (R26.40 in 2008), the total WTP was R25 344.00 (R31 680.00 in 2008) and the WTP per hectare was R21.87 (R27.34 in 2008). A valuation function to predict WTP responses was also estimated. The function showed that knowledge of the local Working for Water Programme and income were important determinants of WTP. <![CDATA[<b>Estimating the value of a positive change in trout fly-fishing quality in the Rhodes trout fishery, Eastern Cape, South Africa</b>]]> The Rhodes trout fishery, located in the North Eastern Cape, is one of South Africa's premier fly-fishing destinations. The integrity of the fishery is, however, under threat due to various land-use practices, which could weaken its appeal as a tourist attraction. The aim of this study is to estimate the amount recreational users are willing to pay for a project to improve the trout habitat of waters managed by the Wild Trout Association (WTA) in this fishery in order to improve its fish population density by 100 per cent. Data were collected from a biased sample of 96 respondents via a questionnaire during September 2006 to September 2007. The median estimated willingness-to-pay (WTP) for the project was R245 per annum per person, and the total WTP was estimated at R171 500 per annum. A valuation function to predict WTP responses was also estimated, and showed that gross annual pre-tax income and the number of visits per annum were positive determinants of WTP. The results of this study show that policy-makers should take heed of the importance trout fly fishers attach to this fishery when declaring trout zones in the upper catchments of South Africa. The aggregate WTP estimation, however, constitutes only a partial analysis of value. A number of other factors and environmental value streams need to be analysed and compared with the value estimates generated by this study if adequate holistic decision-making is to take place with regard to trout stream improvement. More specifically, the aggregate WTP estimated in this study must be viewed as only one input into a comprehensive social cost-benefit analysis to determine the desirability of trout stream improvement for wider society. <![CDATA[<b>Ethics in economic and management sciences: A researcher's resource</b>]]> In an international research climate of increasingly demanding ethical review, based on a biomedical model, reflection on best practices in social, behavioural and economic science research is necessary. It is widely believed that these sciences cannot be held to the same practical requirements as those for biomedical research, although the principles of ethical research are surely universal. This article considers the ethical requirements, principles and guidelines directing research in the social, behavioural and economic sciences, recognised in the national and international arena. By means of a systematic review of available best practices, it is anticipated that general guidelines for social, behavioural and economic science research could be developed and offered to researchers in these fields. Specific consideration is given to the unique characteristics of social, behavioural and economic science research. <![CDATA[<b>A road to organisational perdition?</b> <b>Business, ethics and corporate social responsibility</b>]]> The paper delineates a heuristic device comprising relationships between levels of instrumentality towards Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) implicit in differential theoretical organisational approaches, associated managerial freedom in ethical decision making, and corresponding managerial moral orientations. Prominent theoretical approaches to CSR including: criticalism, fundamentalism, social corporatism, social institutionalism and moralism identified in the extant literature are delineated. These approaches are synthesised and articulated with the concepts of degrees of CSR instrumentality, ethical freedom and managerial moral orientations to produce a composite heuristic device with specific potential practical implementations. Ramifications of the analysis in terms of developing managers with ethical acumen and providing organisational circumstances allowing this to flourish are briefly discussed. <![CDATA[<b>Chief information officers: An empirical study of competence, organisational positioning and implications for performance</b>]]> The role and contribution of the firm's Chief Information Officer has been the subject of much debate and uncertainty. Yet, too few empirical studies have examined the implications of the CIO role. This study examined the effects of CIO demography, CIO competencies as well as CIO organisational positioning on the contribution of information systems (IS&T) to business performance. Data were collected from 111 South African companies and results revealed that CIO business, interpersonal/political and technology management competence have significant direct effects on the dependent variable. The effect of CIO organisational position, including structural power and political relationship, was found to be mediated by CIO competence. CIO work experience also impacted the contribution of IS&T. Results have important implications for our understanding of the competencies and organisational positioning required of executives charged with the responsibility for information systems and technology management. <![CDATA[<b>A more subtle set of information in corporate annual reports for disadvantaged stakeholderds</b>]]> The traditional corporate annual report consists of two types of disclosures, that is, mandatory and contextual disclosures. The research problem focuses on the issue whether full disclosure in corporate annual reports could entail mandatory and contextual disclosures as well as a more subtle set of information for disadvantaged stakeholders. To solve the research problem, use was mainly made of a literature review dealing with certain aspects of decision-useful financial reporting. The literature review was complemented by exploratory empirical research. It was found that full disclosure in corporate annual reports could consist of mandatory and contextual disclosures as well as a more subtle set of information for disadvantaged stakeholders.