Theses and Dissertations

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    Fostering diversity through South Africa's broad based black economic empowerment act
    (2018) Ijasan, Eseigboria Grace Paula
    South Africa gained strong recognition all over the world after the fall of apartheid. Alas their quest to depolarizing the economy of the country has not ended. Several transformational initiatives have been set up by the government to accomplish this feat, the latest and most successful, in terms of economic empowerment, is the Broad-Based Back Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) Act. This initiative has however, been criticized by academics and its direct beneficiaries as not fulfilling its underlying purpose which is to smooth the coexistence of its diversified society. The question has been “is this just another initiative that gives the picture-perfect demographic representation in the work environment or is it giving us much more?” A major discourse has been controversies about the Act’s operationality in achieving its aim and its possible contribution in reinforcing discrimination resulting from societal power shift; hence, the backlash effect on beneficiaries and reverse discrimination on the non-PDI’s (previously disadvantaged individuals). It is on the premise of these questions and criticisms that this research strives to evaluate the Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment initiative as a diversity initiative that has gone beyond managing diversity to fostering diversity. It introduced a framework for fostering diversity which was used as a guideline in developing the Fostering Diversity Index questionnaire. Purposive sampling was used, focusing on nine top BEE companies as rated by EmpowerDex. A well-structured questionnaire was developed and distributed within the companies. These companies had their organisational culture assessed, psychological empowerment evaluated and social perceptions of diversity through the implementation of BBBEE evaluated. Findings from this research indicate that the BBBEE Act has a good potential for fostering diversity; however, fostering diversity requires an organisation to have a culture which embraces diversity as well as an adequate level of psychological empowerment. Without both, there will always be the disconnect between a government diversity initiative, such as the BBBEE and the internal state of affairs of the organisation. This study shows the dynamic relationships between organisational culture, social perception of diversity and psychological empowerment within these top-rated BEE companies. Gender was the only factor that predicts workplace diversity. Among the implication to policy, it is recommended that the implementation process of BBBEE be reviewed to attend to the salient issues of diversity.
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    Twin deficits and the sustainability of public debt in sub-Saharan Africa
    (2018) Gichuki, James Kiiru
    Sub-Saharan African (SSA) debt has attracted attention since the 1980s. Countries in the region moved from healthy debt levels in their formative years,tobecomeoneofthemostheavilyindebtedregionsintheworldrelative to their size of gross domestic product. Policy response to the debt has been unfolding the same way as the debt. First, countries adopted a wait and see attitude in the late 1980s and early 90’s, then swung to debt forgiveness in the 2000s involving 30 out of 48 nations. This research adopts a three-tier approach to an investigation of debt in the region. First, it examines whether internal debt has a relationship with the external debt by evaluating a twin deficit hypothesis by use of a trend analysis and a panel generalized method of moments. Secondly, it controlsforthehighdebtregimeandexamineswhetherdebtreliefmanagedto bringdebtsustainabilitybacktotheregionusingcross-countryautoregressive distributive lag models. Lastly, it evaluates the performance of debt relief in the region with respect to its fiscal space effects. Here, the study investigated whetherdebt forgivenesscrowdedout aid andgrants, increasedconsumption expenditure, or affected poverty alleviation through education and health expenditure. This thesis reports that there exists a positive relationship between the current account and the primary balance and that the relationship is twined so that an increase in one deficit leads to an increase in the other. Specifically, a percentage point increase in the primary deficit leads to a 0.3 percentage pointincreaseinthecurrentaccountdeficit. Italsofindsthatbyreducingdebt from the high debt regime of the 1990s, debt relief had managed to bring back sustainability to the region. Debts had fallen to levels below the formative years of independence, and the two low debt regimes had sustainable debt with the exception of Zambia whose debt remained unsustainable and relatively high as a fraction of GDP. On the impacts of debt relief, this study findsthatdebtreliefpartlyimprovedthefiscalspacebyincreasinggovernment expenditure, domestic revenue, and education expenditure, but found no effects on recurrent and health expenditure.
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    Acceptance of online shopping by individuals in South African townships
    (2018) Dzimati, Shorai
    Internet connectivity has revolutionised the way we conduct our day-to-day activities like banking, communication, travelling arrangements and shopping. Internet has enabled the birth of many technological innovations throughout the world including online shopping. Online shopping is the process of purchasing goods and services from online stores also known as e-tailers over the internet. In developing countries like South Africa, buying and selling of commodities makes up most of the economic activities. Individuals. With the increase in internet connectivity, individuals now have an option to replace the traditional brick and mortar shopping with online shopping. Although online technology is already in maturity phase in the developed countries, for South Africa as a developing country, it is still in its infancy. This might be attributed to factors that may include late penetration of the internet as well as logistical challenges which common in most developing countries. South Africa as a developing country needs technology to grow its economy into a developed country and online technology is one of the key technologies required to achieve this. The majority South African population comes from the townships which means that township dwellers constitute the majority of the consumers. Online shopping technology has potential to contribute towards the growth of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) which is a key part of the South African economy. This demographic set up in South Africa makes it critical for business and academics to understand the acceptance of technology in South African townships, with online shopping being one of these key technologies. The study investigated factors affecting acceptance of online shopping by individuals in South African townships using the adapted unified theory of technology acceptance theory (UTAUT). Using a hypothetical model to test various hypotheses, the study followed a positivist research paradigm. Through the theoretical lens of the adapted unified theory of acceptance and use of technology (UTAUT). A survey was used as the data collection method. The hypotheses were tested and analysed to further understand the factors affecting acceptance of online shopping by individuals in South Africa. Findings of this study revealed that the elements of the adapted unified theory of technology acceptance theory (UTAUT) are strong in predicting acceptance of online shopping in South African townships. Elements like performance expectancy, effort expectancy, social influence as well as trust proved to be significant in predicting acceptance of online technology. This research will assist academics and practitioners to further understand the acceptance of online shopping by individuals.
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    Empirical study of the reverse-causality between organisation performance and employee behaviour in the agricultural manufacturing sector of Malawi
    (2018) Mvula, Ronnie Timpuza
    Many organisations claim that Human Resources are their critical resource. However, what is most critical is not merely the human resources but how the Human Resources are managed. Human Resource Management is achieved through practices that the firm implements; these give the firm sustained competitive advantage. Many studies have found positive and significant relationship between HR management and firm performance. Previous studies have also studied reverse causality investigating whether organisational performance affects HR management policies and found significant positive relationship implying that it is good performing organisations that can afford adopting HRM practices. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether organisational performance motivates how employees behave at work in the reverse causality in the agricultural manufacturing firms in Malawi. To achieve this purpose a survey design was adopted using quantitative research strategy. Data were collected from a probability sample of 77 managers and 308 employees totalling 385 participants. Descriptive and inferential statistics using Structural Equation Modelling (SEM) were used to analyse and test seven hypotheses. The proposed relationships were tested using a number of statistical methods. Adequate reliability was achieved on all measurement scales. Confirmatory factor analysis was conducted on the content and structure of the measured constructs and were confirmed necessary. Reasonable fit was achieved for all the refined measurement models. A Lisrel based SEM was applied to examine whether the model fitted the data obtained from the sample and test the relationships between latent variables. Consistent with previous research; results of SEM revealed that Human Resource Management (HRM) practices are significant correlates of organisational performance. Further results showed positive relationships between business strategy and HRM practices; HRM practices and organisational performance. Significant negative relationship was found between employee attitudes and employee behaviour and employee behaviour and organisational performance.