An Update on Tourism Economics

SAGE Publishing is very pleased to welcome Albert Assaf from the University of Massachusetts, and Raffaele Scuderi (Kore University of Enna) who have joined as the new Editors of Tourism Economics, taking over from Stephen Wanhill who remains as Editor Emeritus and an active member of the editorial board.

Tourism Economics covers the business aspects of tourism in the wider context. It takes account of constraints on development, such as social and community interests and the sustainable use of tourism and recreation resources, and inputs into the production process. The definition of tourism used includes tourist trips taken for all purposes, embracing both stay and day visitors.

teua_23_7.coverAlbert and Raffale have recently done a revamp of the article types that can be submitted to Tourism Economics including the addition of new research article types; including a new Invited Commentary article. More information can be found here. These articles are usually invited by the editor and represent a short opinion or discussion about some on-going topics or debates in the tourism economic literature, but potential authors are welcome to submit a commentary article proposal to the editors, indicating the topic, a detailed abstract,
to the editors via e-mail: Albert Assaf assaf@isenberg.umass.edu or Raffaele Scuderi raffaele.scuderi@unikore.it

Tourism Economics also has several ongoing special issues which the editors encourage you to submit to:
Special Issue: “Economic implications of coporate social responsibility and sustainability in tourism and hospitality
Special Issue: “Spatial economics and tourism development
Special Issue: “Tourism Forecasting: New Trends and Issues

Welcome, Albert and Raffaele to the editorship of Tourism Economics!

Are Voluntary Agreements Better? Evidence from Baseball Arbitration

[We’re pleased to welcome author John W. Budd of the University of Minnesota. Budd recently published an article in the ILR Review entitled “Are Voluntary Agreements Better? Evidence from Baseball Arbitration,” which is currently free to read for a limited time. Below, Budd reflects on the inspiration for conducting this research:]

Coaches Umpires Pre-game Meeting BaseballThink of a dispute you’ve had with a person or entity that you have an ongoing relationship with, like a business, employer, co-worker, or neighbor. Was that dispute resolved between the two of you, or did it involve a third-party determination by a judge, arbitrator, superior, or some other authority? Do you think it mattered how the dispute was resolved? Would your behavior have changed if it was resolved differently?

Conflict resolution professionals and academics have long believed that voluntarily-negotiated agreements produce better long-run relationships than third-party imposed resolutions. This is because the participants can control their own destiny, tailor agreements to their liking, and feel greater ownership in the process and the outcome. Sounds sensible. But there is very little evidence beyond the parties feeling satisfied immediately after resolution. Maybe a formal procedure like a courtroom or arbitration hearing provides greater levels of due process, or the process doesn’t really matter for a long-term relationship because people forget what happened. The motivation for our research in “Are Voluntary Agreements Better? Evidence from Baseball Arbitration” is to provide evidence on this conventional wisdom, and to hopefully spur others to rigorously analyze this important issue in other settings.

Perhaps one reason why there is not much evidence on the long-term effects of dispute resolution mechanisms is that it’s challenging to find research settings in which the same type of dispute is resolved in different ways and in which the long-term effects can be consistently measured. We identified Major League Baseball as a compelling setting for these analyses because individual performance is well measured, the possibility of relationship breakdown is quite real, the negotiation and arbitration events are uniform and comparable across players, and both voluntary and imposed resolutions are routinely observed. Baseball players with between three (sometimes two) and six years of service are eligible for salary arbitration with their current team. In any given year, some go to arbitration while many settle voluntarily. If voluntarily-negotiated agreements are meaningfully better, then in the following season we would expect to see better on-field performance and more lasting relationships for those who voluntarily reached a salary agreement compared to those who went to arbitration and had a new salary imposed on them.

Using 24 years of data comparing players who arbitrated with those who settled just before arbitrating, we find partial support for the conventional wisdom. We find that relationships are more durable when the player and club negotiate a new salary rather than having a salary imposed by an arbitrator. Specifically, arbitration nearly doubles the likelihood of a player not being with the same team at the end of the season. But there are no statistically significant differences in on-field performance between players who go to arbitration and those who settle voluntarily. This might be due to longer-term career concerns. Most arbitration-eligible players are early in their careers and their on-field performance is visible to other clubs. So they have incentives to set aside any residual feelings from the dispute-resolution process and to perform at a high level in order to position themselves for a lucrative, subsequent contract.

This pattern of results is consistent with scenarios in which the arbitration process harms the player-club relationship and negatively affects player behaviors that are hard to observe (e.g., clubhouse attitude, loyalty to the team), but career concerns and/or loyalty to teammates and fans causes a player to continue to publicly perform at his usual level. Such a scenario can be generalized into an hypothesis that could be applied to other settings—that is, the effect of a dispute resolution procedure will be smaller on dimensions of performance that are valued and easily observed by potential, future partners and larger where performance is harder for future potential partners to observe.

While the data come from the context of professional baseball, these results are important for dispute resolution researchers and practitioners with implications beyond professional baseball. The claimed superiority of voluntary dispute resolution procedures is neither uniformly rejected nor supported. Additional research and perhaps some re-thinking of longstanding assumptions are therefore needed.

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Call for Papers: The American Economist

Do you have a manuscript surrounding economic thought? Submit to The American Economist today! AEX is currently seeking manuscript submissions;
click here to view the full submission guidelines.

All manuscripts must be submitted through this portal: https://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/aex 

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Did you know? Over 25 articles from Economic Nobel Laureates have been published in The American Economist. Click here to view the full collection.

As an official publication of Omicron Delta Epsilon, The International Honor Society in Economics, The American Economist is a peer reviewed academic journal that publishes original research from all fields and schools of economic thought. The American Economist specifically encourages submissions from young scholars and those who are teaching the next generation of economists, and will continue to publish papers from experienced and prominent economists whose influence has shaped the discipline.

How Do New Theorizing and Shifts in Learning Emerge?

[We’re pleased to welcome authors Birgit Helene Jevnaker and Atle A. Raa of the Norwegian Business School, Oslo. They recently published an article in Management Learning entitled, “Circles of intellectual discovery in Cambridge and management learning: A discourse analysis of Joan Robinson’s The Economics of Imperfect Competition,”  Below, Jevnaker and Raa describe the inspiration for the study and key findings:]

We share an interest in how ideas in management learning can originate from early thinkers aJevnaker_teaser.jpgnd books.  For instance, we are interested in how classic economic thinking has influenced management learning and practice. In our article, we elaborate and discuss how Joan Robinson – in interaction with a circle of other Cambridge economists – developed a new theory of the firm in imperfect competition. In her opinion, imperfect competition was the normal market situation. It could be a limited number of firms that represented the total supply of a consumer product like carbonated soft drinks.

Joan Violet Robinson was a member of an informal group of a younger generation of economists in Cambridge, UK. Through her first book, The Economics of Imperfect Competition, she actually became an innovator of new ideas and comlqncepts. In this book, published in the wake of the Great Depression in the early 1930s, she explains new principles of how markets operate in different ways depending on the nature of the competition. By recognizing that some enterprises can affect prices and competition, this opened up for later, new thinking of how firms act and learn differently.

We were surprised by two things:

  • First, she became a transformer of earlier ideas of perfect competition into ideas of imperfect competition. It is remarkable that a young woman economist, without any formal position in the academy of Cambridge, could quickly synthetize new thinking of how markets are different.
  • Secondly, we noted that a younger generation of academics engaged collectively in critical and alternative theorizing. Robinson and her friend, the economist Richard F. Kahn, as well as other companions met regularly and discussed the strengths and weaknesses of each other’s arguments. We call this “epistemic interaction”. By this we understand mutual or reciprocal actions or influence in developing the grounds of knowledge and understanding among agents. In Greek, knowing and its possibility of understanding is episteme.

Through our discourse analysis of Robinson’s 1933-book and its emergence, we seek to explain our story beyond the perspective of a great economist finding new ideas by herself. Her book uncovers several important contributors; Robinson herself anchors her book in both established and new theorizing of firms and markets.

Joan Robinson points to the common existence of a limited number of firms with monopoly power over their offerings. Inspired by the 1930s reality as well as earlier writings, she offers new concepts, for example for exchange situations with only one buyer (monopsony). This is a situation where exploitation of labour can emerge, she points out. Robinson no doubt had a certain pedagogical style. She made many of the complicated economic ideas easier to understand by examples and metaphoric language. She claimed that the tool-users had been given “stones for bread” from the toolmakers (the economic thinkers). Still, she stressed that economics is one of the social sciences that study how society works.

From the circle of young economists’ debating in the 1930s, it is worth noting that firms and managers can be commonly acting within dissimilar or “imperfect” market conditions rather than principally “perfect” ones where firms are facing similar price mechanisms, often discussed in past economic literature. This critique and shift in understanding eventually opened up for management studies recognizing also fundamental differences in managerial knowledge, learning and strategizing. We think that more research on how earlier economic thinking has influenced management practice is a fruitful approach to the study of how management learning have developed through most of the 20th century up to our days. It is of general interest how new academic ideas come about.

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The Tragedy of Modern Economic Growth

3404903571_07e490e4fd_z.jpgH. Thomas Johnson, a long standing accounting historian, reflects on how current business practices, which predominantly utilise accounting as their language, are hastening the planet’s decline. His latest article, “The tragedy of modern economic growth: A call to business to radically change its purpose and practices,” is recently published in Accounting History, and is currently free to read.

Johnson argues that modern growth-oriented economies consume resources at a rate faster than the Earth’s ecosystems can presently regenerate, threatening the sustainability of all life. Johnson elucidates how fundamentally new thinking is required to change business practices in ways that protect the Earth. As a solution, this article proposes that the tangible ecological principles that underpin Earth’s life-restorative natural ecosystems provide a more suitable language for materialising a sustainable human economy than the abstract language drawn from accounting and finance.

Click here to access the article. 

Hope/economy photo attributed to Simon King (CC).

Ready, Set, Scholarship! How Athletes Weigh Their College Decisions

3013194880_4d3049b313_z.jpgIt’s no secret that high-performing high school athletes are offered college scholarships as a recruiting tactic, from sports varying from football, to swimming, to volleyball. With most every college student applying for and in need of financial aid, sometimes the scholarship stipend could secure a student’s acceptance, even if the school isn’t his or her top choice.

The National Collegiate Athletic Association is now allocating even more financial aid to athletes since 2015, that covers more than just tuition, room, and board–it can now cover the cost of transportation and other university fees. A recent study in the Journal of Sports Economics  outlines these costs, and how athletes are positively swayed to accept the biggest scholarship offered. The article, “Full Cost-of-Attendance Scholarships and College Choice: Evidence From NCAA Football,” co-authored by John C. Bradbury and Joshua Pitts, is free to read for a limited time.

The abstract for their article is below:

In 2015, the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I schools were permitted to cover the “full cost of attendance” as a part of athletic scholarships for the first time, which allowed schools to provide modest living stipends to its athletes. Differences in cost-of-attendance allotments across schools have the potential to affect the allocation of talent, with higher stipends attracting better student-athletes. Using recently published cost-of-attendance data, we estimate the impact of cost-of-attendance allowances on college football recruiting. Estimates reveal that cost-of-attendance scholarship allowances were positively associated with football recruiting quality immediately following their implementation, indicating that the modest differences in stipends swayed student-athletes’ college choice.

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Football photo attributed to Jamie Williams (CC). 

Who’s Afraid Of Responsibility? The Aftermath Of The Financial Bank Crisis

[We’re pleased to welcome Rolf Brühl, Chair of Management Control at ECSP Europe School of Business. Brühl co-authored an article with Max Kury in the International Journal of Business Commujob.gifnication entitled “Rhetorical Tactics to Influence Responsibility Judgments: Account Giving in Banks Presidents’ Letters During the Financial Market Crisis.” Notes from Brühl:]

Reading the following quote from a leading bank, “We believe we have an affirmative responsibility to play an even bigger role in helping solve the economic, social and environmental challenges of the day” (JPMorgan Chase & Co., 2012), should make us curious about its sincerity. It is hard to find a bank website and not to read sentences like this introductory quotation. We seem to live in the era of corporate social responsibility, and to take responsibility is said to be an important cornerstone of a modern, ethical corporation.

However, do corporations really take full responsibility for their actions? Content analysis of presidents’ letters in the annual financial reports shows accounts as a rhetoric device directed to influence stakeholders in their responsibility judgment. Our results indicate that bank managers in the financial market crisis primarily use accounts which do not directly address responsibility.

This may inspire future research to have a closer look on account giving in the communication of companies if different layers of the responsibility pyramid are concerned (Carroll, 1991): economic, legal, moral responsibilities.

 

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