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  • 1.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Moderating effects on the market orientation and strategic performance relationship in public housing2019In: Baltic Journal of Management, ISSN 1746-5265, E-ISSN 1746-5273Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose - The purpose of this study is to examine how external factors moderate public housing companies’ market orientation and strategic performance relationship.

    Design/methodology/approach – The quantitative method was applied to data from a survey sent to 289 public housing companies in Sweden. A hierarchical, multicollinearity diagnostics–moderated regression analysis is used to test the research hypotheses.

    Findings – The results reveal moderating factors. The companies take several initiatives to inform themselves about customers’ needs and distribute the information within the company, but economic conditions, as well as market and technological turbulence in the municipalities, moderate the relationship between market orientation and strategic performance. Economic conditions make it difficult for public housing companies to strategically act based on market needs when making decisions and planning construction strategies (strategic performance).

    Research limitations/implications – This study is limited by focusing on public housing companies, a sector that differs radically from the open market. The study highlights the effects of moderating factors that are important for companies’ strategic performance and long-term construction strategies. From this limited focus, researchers might use the results to compare both similar and different market situations.

    Practical implications – The results of the study are useful for companies facing a similar market situation of external moderating constraints. The result might be used in future research related to the area in focus.

    Originality –This research adds new knowledge to market research by including the impact of economic conditions, which provide insight into how to develop and use market knowledge in real estate and public housing markets.

  • 2.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration. KTH, Bygg- och fastighetsekonomi.
    The role of market orientation in public housing companies: A study of MO’s effect on construction strategies2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The development of public housing companies in Sweden is strongly influenced by legal, economic, and demographic changes. The companies long tradition of taking responsibility for customer welfare in living have recently been criticized for excessive dominance over price setting, which is claimed to give them competitive advantages in the housing market. New legislation in 2011 requires financial return on investment, implying increased competition with radical changes for the companies. Because of the law, they find themselves transitioning from the role of being responsible for living conditions in Sweden to having to work in a businesslike manner with increased competition.The purpose of this dissertation is to analyze how the public housing companies’ deal with market orientation constructs and what their impact is on construction strategy choices. Theoretically, the market orientation concept is seen as a tool for companies to create superior value for the customers and influence strategic performance, which is a relationship tested and analyzed in this dissertation.The research was conducted through data collection stages using qualitative and quantitative methods. In the first stage, a qualitative pilot study was conducted with interviews of 15 managers in 11 public housing companies in central Sweden. In the second stage, two quantitative comparative studies of public and private housing companies in declining markets in central Sweden were conducted, collecting data from 23 (22 survey respondents) public and 37 private housing companies (16 respondents). In the third and final stage, two quantitative studies were conducted, collecting data from all 289 public housing companies (165 respondents) in Sweden.Results of the five studies show, firstly, that economic condition in the municipality have a major impact on the housing companies’ construction strategies, causing them to act innovatively in order to create superior customer value. Secondly, market orientation efforts contribute to competitive advantages in growing markets, while weak economic conditions limit the companies’ construction strategy choices in declining markets. After analyzing the link between market orientation constructs and construction strategy in declining markets, results showed that the public housing companies demonstrate higher responsiveness to customer demands compared to the private sector, but these have no effects on construction strategy. Thirdly, the analysis of moderating (external) and mediating (corporate social responsibility) effects on the market orientation and construction strategy relationship confirms that economic conditions in society influence construction strategy planning and decisions. The results of the mediating effects of CSR indicate that environmental and social issues have a positive influence on the market orientation and construction strategy relationship.

  • 3.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies.
    Vi är lika: Kulturella skillnader och professionalism i internationella projekt2012Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract

    Title: We are equal. A study of cultural differences and professionalism in international projects.

    Level: Thesis for Master Degree in Business Administration.

    Author: Zahra Ahmadi

    Supervisor: Lars Ekstrand

    Date: 2012-05

    The purpose of my study is to analyze and examine it well-educated people can reduce the cultural differences in interaction with other actors around the world. Part of aims study surveys and analyzes to understand how educated people can communicate and facilitate communication in order to achieve the goals and motivation in international collaboration. Problems can arise from cultural differences in connection with that persons face in society and in international collaboration. In this study, I assume theoretical framework that exists in cultural and communication theme and professionalism to find common objectives within educated groups.

    Method: The purpose of this study, I have chosen to use a qualitative approach. I have conducted interviews with people who work internationally within the company Sandvik and with teachers at the University of Gävle who have worked abroad with teaching. In order to depict how well educated people working in international collaborations, I have seen qualitative research method as relevant. When analyzing the material I have been based on the hermeneutic interpretation in order to elucidate and compare respondents' views on professionalization and the importance of understanding and managing cultural differences in an international context.

    Conclusions: The study shows that highly educated people have a major impact on communication with other people. Professionalism in an international collaboration that is characterized by complexity and knowledge, can thus affect both cultural differences andcommunication in itself. Although personal values differ between different national cultures in terms of language and different ways of working individuals try to adapt to each other in international collaboration. In most cases there are cultural differences that contribute to difficulties in co-operation once, but the study shows that highly educated people solve complexity by applying their knowledge of how problems can be handled. This requires that educated people are aware of the culture, way of interpreting meanings in different contexts, have insight on the institutional structures and rules. Professional people can thus both facilitate communication and leadership, which can contribute to a positive attitude to achieve the objectives of collaboration.

    Suggestions for future research: It may be proposed in the future, a comprehensive study of well-trained groups that meet in different countries. Quantitative can be used methods in both the public and private sectors. It is possible to conduct a quantitative study and compare with qualitative studies and draw conclusions.

    Contribution of the thesis: This study helps to get an attractive understanding of how educated people meet in both the public and private sectors in an international project. My theoretical contribution consists of knowledge in two professional international Swedish organizations. I complement and expand knowledge in the fields of culture and professionalism.

    Despite cultural differences, the professionals communicate regardless of the culture and society they come from. The study can be used by different companies to develop and improve the relationship in an international project. In addition, the study shows that educated people encounter respect and have easier communication than non-educated.

    Keywords: Culture, Communication and Professionalism

  • 4.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Lind, Hans
    chool of Architecture and the Built Environment, KTH, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden.
    Sustainable strategies in a declining housing market: a comparative study2018In: International Journal of Management Practice, ISSN 1477-9064, E-ISSN 1741-8143, Vol. 11, no 4, p. 400-421Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this study is first to examine and comparesustainable strategies within public and private housing companies in decliningmarkets in central Sweden. Then, the study evaluates the impact of newlegislation that requires public housing companies to act in a ‘businesslike’way, in the same way as a long-term private company. A quantitative studywas conducted based on a survey sent to 72 housing companies. The resultsshow that public housing companies are more strategy oriented than privatehousing companies. The results can be viewed as an on-going interactionprocess, where a company’s strategies affect its profit. The study aims toincrease the understanding of activities within housing companies in adeclining market that engage the companies in sustainable strategies toimprove their market knowledge and profit.

  • 5.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Sundström, Agneta
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    The market intelligence impact on strategic performance in declining markets2017In: International Journal of Applied Business and Economic Research, ISSN 0972-7302, Vol. 15, no 15, p. 457-473Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study examines how companies in declining markets operate in the context of market intelligence, responding to customer needs and applying them tostrategic performance. A quantitative survey was sent to 214 public housing companies. The results indicate that market intelligence creates commitment and is significant. A positive relationship was found between data gathering, dissemination, and responsiveness, which indicates that the companies comprehend market needs but companies have difficult to manage construction strategies that improve strategic performance. There was a low value of strategic performance; a link between market intelligence and the chosen strategy was not confirmed. Companies know what the market wants but base their decision on previous strategic performanceon economic conditions in the municipality instead.

  • 6.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Sundström, Agneta
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    The Role of Market Intelligence in Declining Markets: Public Housing Companies in Sweden2015In: Journal of Nonprofit & Public Sector Marketing, ISSN 1049-5142, E-ISSN 1540-6997Article in journal (Other academic)
  • 7.
    Homayoun, Saeid
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Rezaee, Zabihollah
    Fogelman College of Business and Economics, The University of Memphis, USA.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Corporate Social Responsibility and Its Relevance to Accounting2015In: Journal of Sustainable Development, ISSN 1913-9063, E-ISSN 1913-9071, Vol. 8, no 9, p. 178-189Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has been extensively and inconclusively debated in the literature. In this essay, we examine the development of CSR by both reviewing the evolution of the conceptual framework and models of CSR and discussing social responsibility accounting and auditing. We conclude that both business and academic communities worldwide should pay closer attention to CSR and its components of economic, social, and environmental performance. Business organizations worldwide are just starting to recognize the importance of quality as it relates to CSR and the link between profitability and social behavior. Justifications for CSR are fulfilling moral obligations, maintaining a good reputation, ensuring sustainability and licensing to operate, and creating shared value for all corporate stakeholders.

  • 8.
    Steiner, Lars
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Renewal of The Swedish Million Dwelling program, the Public Housing Company and the Local Community, Hindrances and Mutual Aid2013Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Public housing is a vital factor in community development. Successful city, housing and eco system regeneration design is essential in providing positive community development. This concerns work places, nice dwellings, providing premises for child care, care of the elderly, providing qualitative premises for different kinds of commercial service, providing a nice built environment and housing areas and not the least activating tenants. The public housing companies give value to society by stimulating people, renovating socially and economically sustainable as well as being partners to local business and authorities. By their activities the housing companies contribute to sustainable local and regional growth and the identity and reputation of cities. A Social, Economic and Ecological Reputation Effect (SEERE) model for actions to promote housing and community reputation is presented. The model emphasizes regenerative actions to restore natural eco systems as part of housing renewal strategies and to strengthen municipality reputation.

  • 9.
    Sundström, Agneta
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    The Mediating Effects of CSR on Market Orientation Responsiveness in Housing Companies’ Business2018In: XIX ISA World Congress of Sociology: Book of Abstracts, 2018, p. 928-928Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Market orientation research assumes that the company’s knowledge of customer needs has an impact on their responsiveness to customer requirements. From a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) perspective, it is not enough to be responsive to customers’ expressed needs, as accountability should be proactively integrated in core business operations including taking responsibility for stakeholders. As CSR effects on market orientation have received limited interest in research, this study investigates the mediating role of CSR on company responsiveness to customer needs from a market intelligence perspective.

    Attention is paid to Swedish public housing companies to manage the transformation from being socially-driven to becoming economically-driving based on return of investments. Traditionally, the public HCs’ offered living conditions based on the principle that all people are entitled to good housing, which meant that they gained a price-setting role in the housing market. Their social role and economic importance are especially critical in declining markets. The new legislation expects of companies to act market oriented and based on economic principles. Suggested is that customer needs are handled by CSR. In this study the three elements of CSR (social, economic and environmental) are investigated to improve knowledge of their separate mediating role on market orientation. To improve comparability both public and private HCs in declining markets are investigated.

    The purpose of this study is to examine how CSR elements have mediating effects on public housing companies’ activities in the markets.

    The quantitative method is applied. The result is based on a survey sent to 289 Swedish public housing companies.

    The results show that the all dimension of CSR are more positively correlated with market orientation responsiveness in public HCs.

    This study deal with public housing companies and intend only to highlight the effects of CSR as having mediating influence as crucial for company´s customer commitment.

  • 10.
    Sundström, Agneta
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    The Mediating Role of CSR on the Market Orientation and Strategic Performance Relationship: A Study of the Public Housing Companies in Sweden2019In: Sustainability, ISSN 2071-1050, E-ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 11, no 6, article id 1537Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article serves to analyze the impact of corporate social responsibility (CSR) on (1) the market orientation and strategic performance relationship related to public housing companies’ choice of construction strategies and (2) the companies’ responsiveness to gathered and disseminated customer information. The quantitative method is applied, with data analyzed by the PROCESS analysis. The result is based on a survey sent to 289 public housing companies in Sweden. Previous research suggests a positive relationship between market orientation and strategic performance, which was not confirmed by this study. When testing the mediation effects of CSR on the market orientation and construction strategies relationship, these hypotheses were confirmed related to social and environmental dimensions—not economic ones. This study was limited to public housing companies, a sector that radically differs from the situation of companies in the open market. The study increases public housing companies’ knowledge of CSR effects on the market orientation and strategic performance relationship. This result contributes useful information for companies implementing CSR in their activities. The study highlights the importance of integrating CSR into an organization’s market orientation work and shows how CSR improves the companies’ ability to meet customers’ strategic needs.

  • 11.
    Sundström, Agneta
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Hyder, Akmal
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Market and innovation orientation typology: proposition and illustrations2016In: Marketing Intelligence & Planning, ISSN 0263-4503, E-ISSN 1758-8049, Vol. 34, no 3, p. 376-393Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to develop a typology based on the market orientation (MO) and innovation orientation (IO) of firms, and to illustrate the extent to which public housing companies (PHCs) fit into this framework.

    Design/methodology/approach – A qualitative study of 11 PHCs in central Sweden was conducted to classify their positions in the typology. Interviews with semi-structured and open-ended questions were used to collect the data.

    Findings – Four PHC types were identified by combining high and low MO and IO. This study offers insights on the importance of combining MO and IO. The overall findings show that MO and IO combination is not static and must be handled according to context. The MO-IO typology developed could be tested in a quantitative study on a larger sample of public or combined public and private housing companies.

    Research limitations/implications – An empirical study comparing public and private housing companies on the basis of the proposed typology in relation to economic contingencies in the environment would further knowledge in this area.

    Practical implications – The current study gives managers an indication of their position in the typology, which can be used as a tool for improving performance.

    Originality/value – This paper describes PHCs within a proposed typological framework.

  • 12.
    Sundström, Agneta
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Hyder, Akmal
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Market and Innovation Orientation: A Typology of Public Housing Companies in Sweden2013In: World Academy Of Science, Engineering And Technology Issue 0076 April 2013, 2013, p. 4-12Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract— The purpose of this paper is to develop a typology based on market orientation (MO) and innovation orientation (IO), and to illustrate to what extent housing companies in Sweden fit within this framework. A qualitative study on 11 public housing companies in the central part of Sweden has been conducted by the help of open and semi-structured questions for data collection. Four public housing company types’ i.e. reactive prospector, proactive prospector, reactive defender and proactive defender have been identified by the combination of MO-IO dimensions. Future research can include other dimensions like entrepreneurship and network to observe how it particularly affects MO. An empirical study can compare public and private housing companies on the basis of MO and IO dimensions. One major contribution of the paper is the proposition of typology which can be used to describe public housing companies and deciding their future course of actions.

     

    Keywords— Customer-led, economy, innovativeness, market orientation.

  • 13.
    Sundström, Agneta
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Ahmadi, Zahra
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Mickelsson, Kristina
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Business and Economic Studies, Business administration.
    Implementing social sustainability for innovative industrialwork environments2019In: Sustainability, ISSN 2071-1050, E-ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 11, no 12, article id 3402Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Industrial companies are in a situation that requires them to reconsider their social sustainability agenda in order to attract new employees. Building upon interviews with CEOs and HR managers in 20 small medium enterprises (SMEs), this study aims to analyze how high-tech companies and industrial engineering companies define and implement social sustainability into business strategies and operations. Data was collected from 20 interviews and secondary information coded for categorical data analysis in SPSS Statistics 22 software. The findings show that although the companies have adopted several kinds of International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standards, social sustainability is still absent from their operational activities and is considered of lower importance than environmental sustainability. Thus, the implementation of social sustainability can be considered symbolic rather substantive. The study also shows differences between the two groups of companies. The high-tech company group pays little attention to social sustainability aspects, instead focusing on product innovation development. While the industrial engineering group has some interest in social sustainability, their focus is primarily on issues linked to health and safety in order to meet increasing demands from supply chain compliance. Neglecting social aspects of sustainability, such as addressing gender equality and diversity, may cause difficulties in attracting a new workforce.

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