Case overview. Aisha is a female client who recently visited our mental healthcare facility. She is in her late 30s. Aisha’s primary doctor advised her to seek further psychiatric attention by referring her to our Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) Center. The client’s major complaint during her visit to the hospital was suicidal feelings, as well as depressed mood. Regarding medical history, Aisha had no prior problems or associated issues with mental health. At the same time, her family, which consists of her younger brother, father, grandmothers, and mother, has no history of any form of psychiatric disorder.
Social and developmental history. During her childhood and youth, commonly known as adolescence, Aisha did not experience psychological, as well as psychiatric problems. Having completed her high school education, she proceeded to join a university where she pursued a bachelor’s degree in social welfare. Following her graduation from the institution of higher learning, she worked as an intern in one of the local non-governmental organization caring for the orphans and the elderly. After a year of volunteer work, Aisha started working as a social worker in a nearby nursing home. She worked in the facility for approximately nine (9) years. In the search for greener pastures, she secured a well-paying job at an established city firm, working as a consultant. Here, she worked for four (4) years.
Present illness: history. Approximately years ago, Aisha remembers visiting and consulting a local psychiatrist having overdosed what she perceives to be her normal and regular sleeping pills. During this time, the mental health provider conducted appropriate tests and assessments and established that she was suffering from depression. As a result, the psychiatrist engaged a physician who prescribed Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs). She received these antidepressants for six months. Additionally, she requested and was granted an absence leave by her organization. During her leave, Aisha had the rare opportunity to go out frequently doing what she had always wanted to engage in. She failed to return to her formal job after the leave, causing her dismissal.
After spending about two months doing nothing at home, she worked part-time in one of the city bakeries. As much as Aisha hardly worked, it became more apparent that she lacked the zeal to accomplish any assigned tasks well. In fact, during that work, the client confessed that she consistently urged and consoled herself: “I should and must do my best since I chose to work as a baker.” However, she felt pressured most of the time. Consequently, Aisha stated that she gradually began making a variety of mistakes, making her think that she is stupid and cannot achieve anything in life.
Aisha’s mother intervened after getting concerned about her daughter’s welfare and mental state, asking her to discuss what is troubling her. Aisha resisted at first, insisting that she was okay. After a month, she was overwhelmed with work and decided to quit without giving the company any notice. She avoided her mother and sought help by consulting her previous psychiatrist, who gave her medication again. The drugs appeared to have worked for a few months, with Aisha recovering, going out to look for work, and hanging out with friends and relatives. Her mother, who she identified as a tough character, could ridicule her of being lazy and unwilling to shape and define her future while her mates and siblings are progressing every day. Aisha’s case started worsening late that year as she began experiencing suicidal feelings. The severity of her condition exacerbated when she confessed to having started considering possible and the most effective suicide methods. The thought of death persisted, with Aisha believing that something bad is about to happen to her if she failed to commit suicide. Although she continued to help with the family business, she had difficulty maintaining an orderly life, while at the same time, resisting any attempts to visit a psychiatrist. Until recently, her family’s primary physician referred her to our CBT Center.
Jane, currently a resident of Texas, hails from a Syrian immigrant family. Her family can be described as partly religious because her father often blames Allah for failing to save his properties worth millions of dollars from destruction by the ISIS in 2014. Aisha’s elder brother is married to a white woman, who harbors some reservations about Muslim women, seeing them as lazy and incapable of being independent. Aisha argues that she once shared her problem with her, but she showed a great deal of no interest in helping her out. Since then, Aisha has insisted on not sharing her issues with anyone in the family. Aisha’s brother and wife are all doing extremely well as they have invested in the real estate industry and liven in high-end areas in Texas. While working as an intern in the NGO for the elderly and orphans, Aisha remembers an encounter with children and older adults who had achieved everything in life but ended up losing them and finding themselves in a nursing facility. In particular, one of the older adults was her lecturer back in college.
Aisha’s firsthand experience with the people in question makes her feel like life does not deserve the much effort she has so far put into becoming successful. If a whole professor who played a fundamental role in providing her insight into what constitutes success and being knowledgeable is being helped, then she should not struggle or live. She is resentful about her education. Moreover, Aisha saw her closest friend being fired for minor misconduct, something that went a long way in discouraging her from making tireless efforts as an employee. Although her family is relatively successful, she feels that none of them is ready to help her. Yes, they do not have a history of any mental illnesses, making it difficult to seek psychiatric help from family members. In Syrian culture, mental diseases are most likely to be treated as spiritual. This explains why Aisha took a long time considerably before visiting a psychiatrist even when she had difficulty sleeping.
Aisha faces a wide range of stressors that commingle to trigger suicidal thoughts or ideation in her. In particular, she cannot share her emotional problems with her family members, who see as unsupportive. In this respect, she has to be pretentious, telling her mother and anyone else that she is okay and nothing is wrong with her. Undoubtedly, this feeling is fast eating her inside by triggering the feeling of committing suicide. Aisha has been made to believe by her brother’s wife that Muslim women are weak and incapable. Despite working hard, with viewpoint, she thinks of herself as a good-for-nothing woman, who will never achieve anything in life. Aisha’s mother is a hard-to-deal-with lady who confronts issues head-on. As a result, Aisha has chosen never to engage her. Having an unsupportive mother is a risk factor for harboring depressive thoughts. Aisha stated that she has difficulty sleeping, compelling her to overdose sleeping pills. The second question is, what if the sleeping pills fail to work next time. She hangs out with friends, with the possibility some are drunkards or smokers. This means she might choose to try hard drugs, which are more harmful to health and often trigger a feeling of taking one’s own life.
Aisha views herself as undesirable, defective, worthless, inadequate, and diseased such that she lacks the much-needed abilities to gain access to what life or fate has so far denied her. It is evident from the case that she has had a variety of work-related opportunities immediately after college. Still, she sees little too on meaning in pursuing a better life like that of her brother. To Aisha, life in itself is cruel because people who surround her, including her mother, are cruel and rejecting. She describes her mother as a hard woman. Aisha only sees a hopeless future. Although there are resources available at her disposal, including education, she does not see them as she believes that either external or internal resources cannot solve her problems. Concisely, Aisha’s sense of defectiveness plays a leading role in making her more distressed and passive when it comes to confronting her emotional issues.
Central Thoughts Client is avoiding
Aisha has a strong feeling that she is not good enough for herself, parents, as well as the world. The fact that her mother is hard to deal with and other family members quite unsupportive has so far added to the already-burdensome insecurity on her shoulder. This lack of appreciation from people in her circle is demoralizing to the extent that Aisha sees herself as a failure. In particular, she is concerned about the inability to keep her job. One the same, not she not only dislikes but also hates the realization that even people who should be her role models have failed in life, including her former lecturer.
She confesses that she has been over self-conscious about her future because life is meaningless. This explains her lack of interest in working hard and pursuing her career to become a stable and useful member of society. Moreover, she has a hard time sleeping, a fact that compels her to overdose over the counter sleeping pills. Aisha is also battling stereotypes people have about Muslim women. She failed to receive much-needed support from her brother’s white wife. What is more, distressing is how oblivious her family members, including her mother and father, are about discrimination. With her father doubting the omnipotent nature of God, she is expected to endure her problems on her without necessarily receiving moral support from him.
According to the widely adopted and used CBT Model of Suicide, Aisha’s signs and symptoms correlate to suicide ideation. This model has so far identified and outlined clear and concise criteria for diagnosing suicidal thoughts, attempts, and planning (Mathews, 2012). In particular, a person suspected of being a victim of severe major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, and mood disorders are expected to experience three symptoms within a two (2) – week period, as indicated in the DSM-5. Most importantly, at least of these signs and symptoms should comprise of hopelessness and depressed mood. The CBT Model criteria include the following symptoms as a way of providing a guideline for psychiatrists to conduct a differential diagnosis for suicide risk:
The patient is hopeless as he or she sees no solutions to any of her or his problems.
The individual suffers from attentional bias, which means she automatically places much emphasis on selecting and identifying with suicide-related information.
The client experiences attentional fixation as they report mental states characterized by confusion, as well as disorientation just before making the first suicide attempt.
The patient has an overgeneralized memory, which is one of the major information processing defects common in severely depressed and suicidal individuals.
The patient’s thinking is cognitively rigid and dichotomous because he or she lacks the capacity to see and utilize available alternatives to solving their problems.
The individual experiences physical and emotional pains because she or he believes that their problems are intolerable.
The visiting client should only receive a comprehensive diagnosis for suicide risk when each of these signs and symptoms goes a long way in causing him or her clinically significant distress. Alternatively, the symptoms should cause individual clinical impairment when it comes to a variety of functioning areas, including occupational and social (Smith, Renshaw, & Bilello, 2013). At the same time, the symptoms, which include but not limited to being hopeless, emotional pain without clear causes, and confusion in thoughts, should not result from any other medical conditions, such as substance abuse.
The patient is suicidal because, through the interview, she has reported feelings of emotional and physical pains, hopelessness, cognitively dichotomous and rigid thoughts, attentional fixation, attentional bias, as well as overgeneralized memory (Mathews, 2012). Aisha’s current mental state is confused and disoriented because she experiences not only racing thoughts and deep emotional pain but also tunnel vision and moderate agitation. Because of this high-level disorientation, the solution to her problems and depressive moods is suicide. In other words, she believes that nothing is worth living for. Additionally, her overgeneralized memory can be observed in how she focuses on past personal experiences, responding with vague and negative recollections. For instance, she reminisces that one of the older adults in the nursing facility is her former instructor at the university, but now she is incapable. This is a generalized thought.
Aisha’s cognition is both rigid and dichotomous because she cannot see and utilize the options of actions necessary for solving her problematic situations. At the same time, she has failed to anticipate any of the negative consequences associated with her decision to commit suicide. Through dichotomous thinking, she has so far categorized almost all her experiences as a failure. In Aisha’s suicidal crisis, she considers her psychological pain as interminable, intolerable, as well as inescapable, meaning the only way out of these pains is suicide. She does not believe that her condition can change for the better now or in the future.
Like any other person suffering from psychiatric conditions, the patient has developed and used a variety of coping strategies (Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, 2020). In particular, hopelessness has compelled her to consider stop working as a public consultant and baker. The second coping strategy that Aisha has demonstrated is self-blame, seeing herself as an inadequate and incapable person, who cannot perform well in any other job. She believes that she is lazy and unproductive, which means she does not deserve to live. Another strategy involves denial. Layla says that she has to resist sharing her problems with her hard mother and despising family members, such as her brother’s wife. By pretending to be fine, she is only denying the problem, which, in turn, goes along a long way in hurting her emotional well-being (Mathews, 2012).
Aisha is also venting and engaged in recurrent comparisons with others. From her confessions and statements, it is evident that she is battling her past, ruminating on a lot of negative events that happened in her life, including the fact that her former college instructor has failed. She is obsessed with comparing how her future will be a failure as that of her colleague who was laid off and the sick, elderly lecturer. These coping strategies are only driving her toward suicide because none of them is positive.
The plan for treating the patient would focus on the achievement of specific social or family, occupational or financial, and health goals. In this case, some of the major social goals to address include improving social relationships and changing general social behavior. The main occupational goals would comprise finding a job and improving problem-solving skills (Mathews, 2012). Health and other goals in the treatment plan would include organizing and cleaning home, improving emotional health, and resolving existential, commonly known as spiritual issues. Most importantly, the realization of the identified goals would require a combination of pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy, which has so far been established to be a treatment approach characterized by desirable mental psychiatric health outcomes.
The first aspect of applying psychotherapy in Aisha’s case has been completed through her direct interaction with the psychiatrist, talking about her condition. The main form of psychotherapy for the patient would be behavioral therapy. First, the staff would help Aisha with strategies necessary for adjusting her current difficulty through the identification of negative beliefs about the meaning of life, while at the same time, replacing them with positive and healthy behaviors. For instance, the staff would guide the patient on how to become more assertive and confront her fears by remaining more proactive at home and in any other social setting. Moreover, the patient would be trained to explore relationships by incorporating positive interactions with her parents, healthcare providers, and past and potential employers. She would be helped to become friendly, optimistic, and resilient. In this way, she would be in a position to exercise a great deal of control over her life, depressive suicidal thoughts, become hopeful, and achieve a sense of satisfaction without necessarily allowing external stressors to undermine her from achieving realistic goals.
Alongside psychotherapy, psychopharmacology would go a long way in improving Aisha’s psychiatric condition because she is both agreeable to medication and willing to implement any strategies for a positive outcome. The staff would identify and choose and prescribe the most effective antidepressants that would play a central role in relieving her of depression (Mayoclinic, 2020). The timeline for the implementation of this treatment plan would be 12 weeks, including two weeks for follow-up activities as a way of ensuring the patient’s full recovery from suicide ideation.
Battle, C. et al. (2010). Treatment goals of depressed outpatients: A qualitative investigation of goals identified by participants in a depression treatment trial. Journal of Psychiatric Practice, 16(6), 425-430.
Mathews, J. (2012). Cognitive-behavioral therapy approach to suicidal thinking and behaviors in depression. Intech Open Journal. DOI: 10.5772/52418
Layla Mohammed is a 31-year -old female who presents to the clinic for psychotherapy. Regarding clothing, the patient is well-groomed with her hair pulled back neatly into a bun. Her clothes are neat and tidy, and she’s calm and cooperative during the session. Layla states that she is a stay-at-home mother of two small children, 1 and 4 years of age. The patient also reports that she is going through a divorce with her husband of 8 years after finding out that he’s been unfaithful. The patient was referred to the clinic by her PMHNP. The patient reports the inability to enjoy the things that she used to enjoy. The patient used to love cooking, exercising, spending time with her children, and doing home DIY projects.
The patient states that she’s been extremely self-conscious about her weight, and her lack of interest in exercising contributes to her weight gain. Layla explains that she sleeps most of the day and feels much more fatigued than usual; she reports 14-16 hours of sleep a day. She feels inadequate as a spouse and like she’s not pretty or slim enough, which is the route of her husband deciding to be unfaithful. She also saw a picture of her husband’s mistress, who was much younger and slimmer than she is. She pretends to be happy for her children, which creates internal conflict because she feels like there is a huge discrepancy with her internal feelings and her external countenance. She feels trapped like she is forced to smile and pretend like things are OK for her children when inside, she’s extremely sad that her marriage is failing.
She also reports a very strained relationship with her mother. When she told her mother of her failing marriage and possible decision to divorce her husband of 8 years, her mother was extremely disappointed in her and said, “ you took a vow in front of guests and Allah to stand beside this man until death do you part. Divorce is not culturally accepted in Iran or the Muslim culture. Layla reports feelings trapped like she has no one to talk to or anyone that understands. Layla is also concerned about the inability to function financially as a single unit without the financial contribution of her husband.
Layla currently does not work; she stays home and takes care of her two children and tends to any household needs. She used to find great joy in cooking large extravagant meals for her husband and children and kept the house sparkling clean. Layla has struggled with simple tasks like getting out of bed and preparing the children for kindergarten/daycare in the last year and a half. As a result, she finds herself making quick, easy meals so she can spend as little time in the kitchen as possible. She also doesn’t keep the house as tidy as she used to, which in turn adds more strain to her struggling marriage (one of the coping strategies among MDD patients) (Battle et al., 2010).
Layla has a strong feeling that she is not good enough for herself, children, parents, as well as her husband. The fact that her husband cheats have so far added to the already-burdensome insecurity on her shoulder. Given Layla’s status as a stay-at-home mum (SATM), she is convinced that her husband sees her as a burden, a lazy person who does nothing to help the family. This lack of appreciation from people in her circle is demoralizing to the extent that Layla sees herself as a failure (a feeling of worthlessness). In particular, she is concerned about the inability to function financially as a single unit without the financial contribution of her husband. Her main tasks revolve around caring for her two children and tending to each household chores and associated needs.
Layla dislikes and hates the realization that she is fast getting fat. She confesses that she has been over self-conscious about her size and weight (a key symptom of MDD). She is no longer interested in and willing to engage in physical activities. Moreover, she sleeps a lot, with her husband having little to no time for her. All these factors blend to contribute to the added weight, which, in turn, makes her feel unattractive to her husband. Having seen her husband’s mistress’ picture, she became more worried as the lady in question is slim, the size that appears to have attracted her husband, “I feel inadequate as a spouse and not pretty and slim enough which is the route of my husband deciding to be unfaithful.” Equally important, Layla is worried about what the future holds for her two children because she has to be fake happiness before them, which is an unproductive act. There is a high discrepancy between her external countenance and inner feelings characterized by sadness.
Layla is also battling the fear of disappointing her parents, religion, and marriage. She does not receive any form of support from anyone, including her immediate sisters, mother, and father (these are external stressors associated with MDD). With Layla’s father serving as one of the staunchest Muslims, she is expected by her mother to endure the extreme challenges in her marriage. According to Islam, a woman is required to submit to her husband, meaning there is no room for divorce. Although She lives in the United States where women enjoy a wide range of rights, Layla feels that divorcing her husband would have a far-reaching negative effect on her marriage, socioeconomic and psychological well-being, and relationship with family members.
Following Layla’s first visit, the presiding psychiatrist conducted an intake interview, placing much emphasis on assessing her depressive symptoms through a structured interview, as well as self-rating scales. The assessments are undertaken, and the results are explained below:
Self-Compassion Scale Short Form-SCS-SF
Any mental health professional must have interacted with or used the SCS-SF because of its popular applicability in the assessment of self-compassion in clinical settings. Moreover, this tool has so far been translated from English to a wide range of languages. The scores range from the self-compassion factor through the self-coldness factor to the overall self-compassion factor. Layla scored 10, 18, and 20 in the self-compassion, self-coldness, and overall self-compassion factors, respectively (Arimitsu et al., 2016). These scores indicate that she is not self-compassion; she is harboring self-hate and self-blame.
Beck Depression Inventory-II
The Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II) serves as one of the widely adopted and used self-rating scales for diagnosing depression. This assessment tool comprises 21 items, which are rated on the 4-point Likert scale. From the items, the patient is allowed to select responses that adequately corresponds to their mental states. The BDI-II version used has scores, which are classified as minimal, mild, moderate, and severe. In essence, 0-13, 14-19, 20-18, and 29-63 represents minimal, mild, moderate, and severe depressive symptoms, respectively. Most importantly, the BDI-II was tested and shown sufficient validity, as well as reliability, has been standardized. From the results, Layla scored 32 points.
According to Bromet et al. (2011), the MINI has been established as a useful assessment instrument for checking a wide range of psychiatric problems. In this case, the results revealed that the patient is most likely to be suffering from both a social anxiety disorder (SAD) and MDD.
Patient Health Questionnaire -9 (PHQ-9)
Scientists have so for standardized and validated the PHQ-9 through the use of large patient data sample, making the self-rating tool a critical instrument when it comes to the whole process of evaluating mental problems in primary care. Based on the PHQ-9, scores above 10 points are clinical depression, which requires immediate referral to a mental health professional. In particular, 0-4, 5-9, 10-14, and 15-19 represent the absence of depression, minimal depression, moderate depression, and moderate to severe depression, with more than 20n points showing the presence of severe depression (Maroufizadeh et al., 2019). Layla scored 18 points, which means her psychiatric condition is moderate to severe depression.
Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale (LSAS)
When it comes to assessing social anxiety, the LSAS self-rating scale comes in handy. With up to 20 measurable items on a 4-point Likert scale, the LSAS allows the patient to select adequate responses from two aspects of avoidance and fear. Based on the LSAS scores, 30-40, 60-70, 70-90, and 90 and above are classified as borderline, moderate, severe, and highly severe depression. In this case, Layla scored 88 points, meaning she suffers from severe depression.
Layla’s primary psychiatrist had earlier conducted a physical examination, diagnosing her with MDD. When referred to our healthcare facility, the hospital’s lead psychiatrist also established that, through the assessment instruments above, she suffers from MDD. Consequently, the staff embarked on the implementation of the treatment plan, which followed three phases and thirteen sessions. The patient worked hand-in-hand with the provider throughout the treatment-recovery process as a way of realizing the already established treatment goals.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) serves as the highly recommended treatment option for MDD. However, scientists, including individual psychiatrists, agree that some patients are most likely to have difficulty responding to cognitive restructuring, the main goal of CBT. One of the researchers in this psychiatry, Gilbert (2010), contends that this group of patients can generate adaptive thoughts, yes. Still, their conditions deny them the ability to experience comfortable emotions, as well as safety. Such tendencies, Gilbert (2010) argues, are common in psychiatric patients presenting symptoms of high self-criticism or self-blame, as well as shame or guilt. In other words, these patients, including Layla, find it extremely challenging to embrace compassion towards themselves. In response to Layla’s condition that involves being deeply self-critical, shameful, reduced ability to think, and lack of energy, she should be treated with compassion-focused therapy (CFT). Concisely, this treatment option went a long way in enhancing the patient’s self-esteem, while at the same time, inducing autonomy.
Initial Phase: 1-3 Sessions
In this first phase, the main goal revolves around a detailed exploration of Layla’s past, as well as present encounters and associated relationships, as a way of gaining a deeper understanding of what constitutes her interpersonal and personal issues and their direct and indirect connection to the onset of depression. The first session involved the therapist asking the patient about her life to understanding her chief complaint. In response, Layla talked about her current and past sociocultural and economic problems, including college life, early pregnancy, dropping out of college, being a SAHM, cheating husband, lack of support from parents, how she envies her successful sister, and the fear of gaining more weight due to lack of exercise. Layla reiterated that her family has no history of mental illnesses and that she has never thought of committing suicide. Having narrated her issues, the therapist responded by reflecting on Layla’s painful emotions. After that, the provider provided psychoeducation, teaching the patient about her negative feelings and pointing out at some of the strategies necessary for coping with these emotions.
When the two players met for the second session, the therapist taught the patient about the meaning and key aspects of self-compassion, relying on evolutionary viewpoints from CFT theoretical frameworks. The patient responded by saying that she did not recognize the fact that the condition is not her fault. This demonstrates the positive impact of a CFT perspective (McBeth & Gumley, 2012). The following psychoeducation, the provider utilized the third session to introduce other emotion prevention and management strategies, including soothing rhythm breathing (SRB), as well as mindfulness. Consequently, Layla reported a significant reduction in self-criticism and anxious feelings.
Middle Phase: 4-9 Sessions
Having established Layla’s main psychiatric problem and her ability to identify with reduced emotions, which means the patient’s willingness to prioritize her role transition from the treatable illness, the therapist led her to the middle phase. In the fourth session, the therapist reminded Layla that she remains tasked with the responsibility of detecting and monitoring symptoms of her condition throughout the therapeutic process. By doing so, she will be in a position to identify and report better results. Here, the provider asked the patient to continue the SRB. When she reported for the fifth session, Layla reported a gradual reduction in negative rumination, besides, to slowly a relaxed feeling. Despite these promising changes, the patient confessed that relaxing equals being lazy, a factor that she thinks has been contributing to her troublesome marriage.
Given the patient’s confession that she needs to be physically and mentally active, the therapist used the sixth session to introduce behavioral activation. Besides the introduction of emotional and motivational ideas, the provider included the importance of compassion in human life. The patient was made to understand that she needs to relax and perform compassionate activities, such as showing herself great love. She expressed being anxious about her inability to be happy without work, a kind and appreciative husband, and a supportive family. As a result, the therapists continued to establish compassion, using the seventh session to introduce the patient to the imagery exercise designed for enhancing compassionate self.
In the next session, the patient told the therapist how she now incorporates honorific words when addressing her husband, who has started seeing sense in the urgent need for them to talk as husband and wife. She is gradually discarding dark moods while preparing meals for their children. Given Layla has been battling depression for some time now, she reported being wary of the changes in her behavior, such as the avoidance of emotional expression when tending to household chores, engaging her husband, and taking care of her children. However, the therapist reminded her to keep on the exercise and record her feelings to generate even more positive and compassionate thoughts. In the ninth session, Layla reported a significant decrease in negative rumination. Consequently, the therapist used this session to enforce the already-acquired positive behaviors by validating her reasonable fears and emphasizing the need for continuing the desired activities.
Termination Phase: 10-13 Sessions
In the third and final phase, the therapist and the patient prioritize establishing the effectiveness of the treatment plan and process. The therapist acknowledged and appreciated the fact that Layla would still have difficulty convincing her parents on the possibility of seeking divorce if her husband refuses to offer the much-needed social support. Nonetheless, all the players focused on understanding and improving the positive changes in her behavior and overall well-being, especially developing and maintaining strong compassion towards herself by eliminating self-blame, acquiring effective communication skills, and being optimistic about the future. In this way and through the two-week follow-up, the therapist was able to identify areas in which the patient shows more proficiency and believes she is independent. Another vital aspect of this phase involved understanding potential challenges in realizing some of the treatment goals.
Throughout the middle phase, the therapist learned that Layla managed to engage her mother and husband compassionately. At the same time, reigniting the vigor, she had while attending to her children. Although quite anxious about the lingering thoughts of a cheating husband, she prioritized the use of compassionate ideas to confront the bad feelings. Through CFT exercises, the patient requested the therapist to help her create a return-to-college plan because her parents and husband supported the idea. Layla started feeling whole and passionate about her future. She also consulted and was ready to start a part-time job at a local supermarket, which would go a long way in keeping her busy and financially productive. She embraced not only assertiveness but also idealized the need for communicating her thoughts out as opposed to harboring negative feelings about her husband. Equally important, Layla promised to finish the therapy.
In this case formation, the therapist established that the main complaint in Layla’s MDD is psychological because she is both self-critical and shameful. These extreme emotions played a leading role in denying the patient the opportunity to develop a compassionate mind, making her feel worthless, unwanted, and pessimistic about life, her marriage, work, education, and other aspects of life. Given CBT mainly treats MDD through cognitive restructuring, the therapist found that is the general application to the patient’s case could not generate the much-needed compassionate emotions, as well as a feeling of safety and security. For this reason, the treatment plan focused on the integration of CFT, which the therapist implemented in three different phases and 13 sessions.
The key aspects of the treatment process included psychoeducation, SRB, mindfulness, and the imagery exercise. Through psychoeducation, the therapist introduced emotion regulation, which, in turn, created a favorable environment for understanding the patient’s painful emotions. Typically, the mental health providers’ ability to gain insight into the troubling thoughts and feelings of their patients serves as a key element or layer of CFT, commonly known as compassionate understanding. These therapeutic exercises allowed the patient to identify and regulate each of her threat-based emotions. From the patient case study, some of the emotions comprised a lack of support from her family, being cheated on, regrets regarding failure to finish her college education and feelings of being unproductive. CFT managed to treat the patient’s emotional, behavioral, intellectual, economic, and physical problems as she demonstrated assertiveness, increased physical activity, strong relationship with family members, as well as the willingness to go back to college and secure a job. Ultimately, Layla developed strong self-esteem and identified with increased autonomy and ability to exercise control over her life.
Arimitsu, K., et al. (2016). Construction and validation of a short form of the Japanese version of the Self-Compassion Scale. Komazawa Annual Reports in Psychology, 18, 1-19.
Battle, C. et al. (2010). Treatment goals of depressed outpatients: A qualitative investigation of goals identified by participants in a depression treatment trial. Journal of Psychiatric Practice, 16(6), 425-430.
Bromet, E. et al. (2011). Cross-national epidemiology of DSM-IV major depressive episode. BMC Medicine, 9(1), article 90.
Maroufizadeh, S., et al. (2019). The reliability and validity of the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) and PHQ-2 in patients with infertility. Reproductive Health, 16, 137.
Gilbert, P. (2010). Compassion focused therapy: Distinctive features. New York, USA: Routledge.
McBeth, A. & Gumley, A. (2012). Exploring compassion: A meta-analysis of the association between self-compassion and psychopathology. Clinical Psychology Review, 32(6), 545-552.
Muramatsu, K. et al. (2016). The Patient Health Questionnaire, Japanese version: Validity, according to the Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview –Plus. Psychological Reports, 101(3), 952-960.
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While providing care, care providers need to pay attention to each patient and their situation. Embracing patient-centred care represents a radical shift in the approach to healthcare. Therefore, it is important to consider barriers to care, the involvement of family members, and strategies to empower patients and their families as part of understanding patient-centred care.
Patient Education Regarding Medications and Health Conditions
Patients may face barriers that may hinder them from taking proper care of themselves. Therefore, patient education efforts have to be conscious of such facts for maximum effectiveness. In the case of Mr. M, the person offering the education must consider her personal situation. According to Morris & Chasens (2017), financial difficulties significantly burden diabetes patients. The authors found that women and non-white populations deserve special attention, as they are more likely to experience financial difficulty (Morris & Chasens, 2017). Ms. M meets both criteria, as she is a Hispanic female. With her situation in mind, the care staff must come up with ways of getting the patient to continue taking her medication. While interacting with her, it is important to let her know of the need to take all her drugs as advised and the risks associated with non-adherence. It is also critical to let the patient know how to self-monitor and when to seek medical attention. Ultimately, such information helps the patient to have a better level of control over their health.
Active Involvement of Patients and Family Members
Care outcomes of safety, quality, and cost-effectiveness depend largely on the level of involvement of patients and their families. When interacting with a patient, healthcare staff must assess the level of patient engagement because of its potential impact (Morris & Chasens, 2017). Quality care outcomes are only possible through collaboration in disease management, health education, and continuous monitoring of the patient’s health status. Therefore, engaging patients and their families in collaborative care will help keep them fully engaged and involved in the care process (Agha et al., 2018). Providing patient education is an important way of engaging patients and families. By providing instructions, healthcare staff help patients take better care of their health. When patients are informed, they become proactive in their care process. In the case of Ms. M, providing education on medication would improve the safety and quality of care outcomes because she would adhere better to her medication and engage in health-supporting behavior. Consequently, the risk of infections and worsening health reduces, resulting in hospital savings. Therefore, care staff must always explore ways of patient engagement.
To ensure patient engagement, care staff must assess each patient’s situation and the resource needed to have them fully engaged. Community health workers are an important resource that can benefit patients (Vahdat et al., 2014). After assessing Ms. M’s situation, the hospital where she receives treatment should refer her to a community worker. Community health workers are an important link between patients and care systems. They help to prevent social isolation among patients, which has a significant impact on outcomes. Linking Ms. M to a community health worker would be beneficial, considering that she lives alone and is isolated. It would help to link the patient to someone that speaks Spanish as the patient has difficulties with English. The worker would be ready to respond to any medical emergencies. The person would also be in a position to offer education to the patient and ensure that the patient is knowledgeable and able to take care of them self.
Common Barriers to Patient Involvement
The attainment of healthcare outcomes requires a patient’s full participation and involvement. However, some barriers could hinder the process and prevent one from fully taking charge of their health processes. In some instances, patients’ family ties and relations could stand in the way of a one’s health care process (Agha et al., 2018). This is evident in the way that Ms. M gives her Medicare money to her son to help him with child support. She is probably doing that because family is highly valued in her culture, and she would readily put the interests of her kin ahead of hers. It might help show the patient that her health matters before anything else and that she should put it first.
While patient education is useful in patient engagement, too much information can be counterproductive. Overloading the patient with too much detail can make it hard for them to know the information to use, which can negatively affect patient safety (Agha et al., 2018). It gets worse when patients do not learn because of their either unwillingness or inability to learn. In the case of Ms. M, her limited English may hamper her ability to learn, as she might not understand most of the instructions that she receives. Therefore, too much information or an inability to learn may negatively affect patient engagement.
As patients grow older, they might face challenges that keep them from proper engagement in their care. Old age, coupled with lack of access to the latest technologies such as a smartphone and internet. Many senior citizens often feel unmotivated intimidated by technology that they may not make enough effort to take into self-care. Care staff must consider innovative approaches to this problem, such as demonstrating various processes and how they can do them. Care providers face the challenge of dealing with the barriers that hinder patient engagement. They need to work around these issues to ensure that they do not affect a patient’s ability to participate fully in their care.
How to Empower Patients or Families in All Aspects of the Care Process
After identifying the barriers that hinder patient engagement, it is important to develop strategies to empower the patients and their families to become active participants in the care process. First, it is important to have proper education and information for patients and their families (Vahdat et al., 2014). Only after receiving enough information can patients and their families fully participate in the care process. Secondly, care providers must involve patients and their families in decision-making and allow them to have adequate control over the care provision processes. This includes respecting their belief systems, culture, and rights. Care providers must embrace shared decision making, whereby the patients are active participants in all clinical choices. Further, it is not possible to empower patients and their families without proper communication (Agha et al., 2018). It is only by communication that providers know of their patient’s preferences and any challenges they may have as they pursue their health goals. Communication has to occur in a way that is convenient to the patient, and care staff has the responsibility to ensure that patients are able to express themselves fully (Vahdat et al., 2014). In the case of Ms. M, it might help to have a Spanish speaker with whom she can easily communicate. Ultimately, such efforts would lead to patient empowerment.
Overall, there is value in understanding the facets of patient-centered care. It is imperative for providers to find ways of engaging patients as well as empowering them and their families. It is also critical to identify barriers that hinder patient participation in care. Ultimately, such measures are useful in improving patient safety, quality, and cost-effectiveness.
Agha, A., Werner, R., Keddem, S., Huseman, T., Long, J., & Shea, J. (2018). Improving Patient-centered Care. Medical Care, 56(12), 1009-1017. https://doi.org/10.1097/mlr.0000000000001007
Morris, J., & Chasens, E. (2017). Financial Difficulty: A Barrier to Self-care in Patients with Diabetes. The Diabetes Educator, 43(3), 247-248. https://doi.org/10.1177/0145721717703486
Vahdat, S., Hamzehgardeshi, L., Hessam, S., & Hamzehgardeshi, Z. (2014). Patient Involvement in Health Care Decision Making: A Review. Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal, 16(1). https://doi.org/10.5812/ircmj.12454
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Please refer to the scenario above and answer the following questions.
What would be the priority nursing intervention to care for Peter? Please explain the rationale for your response.
Bystanders insist that you place something in his mouth to keep him from biting or swallowing his tongue. Is this an appropriate action? Why or why not?
You have asked someone to call 911. What do you anticipate reporting to the emergency medical personnel when they arrive? Please explain the rationale for your response.
Peter remains a little groggy after the seizure ends. You explain that the ambulance is on its way and that you will stay with him until it arrives. Peter asks you to help him up off of the floor. Is this an appropriate action at this time? Why or why not?
Standard American English (correct grammar, punctuation, etc.)
Logical, original, and insightful
Professional organization, style, and mechanics in APA format
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The general view about a law case summary and the shortcomings and possible suggestions
Course Work 1 case summary and report
This paper entails a report that outlines the general view about a law case summary and the shortcomings and possible suggestions on the best ways of improving the piece. The paper also involves rewriting the same summery in order to get rid of the available errors as a way of ensuring that the decisions are clearly explained. The final decision by the court would then be established after correcting the summery mistakes.
Case Summery Report
This section entails a brief report about a general view of the court summery including the shortcomings, errors, and suggestions for possible improvements. The summery presents a court case on assisted murder. The summery has a number of mistakes that lead to reduced clarity. There are errors associated with grammar mistakes such as wrongly spelt words, unclear phrases, wrong punctuations, and wrong use of words. The summery does not consider the use of law or court language. Again, it is a bit unclear on the court ruling given that the summery only indicate five court ruling without any informed conclusion.
A number of words are wrongly spelt or their use brings unintended meaning. Misspelled words include euthanasia, in the first paragraph, defense in the second paragraph, parliament in the third paragraph, un-proportionate in the fourth paragraph, forcibility, Switzerland, and foresee in paragraph six. The word “weather” is used in paragraphs two and four to imply “whether.”
Unclear Phrases/Sentences and wrong punctuations
The summery has some unclear phrases and sentences whose usage makes it difficult to understand the summery. A phrase like, “The applicants were really badly disabled,” is incorrect since it uses two adverbs to show the degree of disability. At most one adverb had to be used. A case like, “So what the Court had to decide was whether there was…,” is not clear in terms of whether the court was supposed to do so or it was exactly what the court did. The sentence should be, “The Court decided on whether there was…,” The summery has other related cases of poor sentence structures, and poor punctuations (Summary of R. V. Nicholson , 2013).
Use of Law Language
The summery depicts a court case but makes use of only a few words that create an impression of a court ruling. Instead of using words like “brought” to imply the case opening, the words, “…presented before the court…,” could have been used. The summery also avoids the use of court case word such as plaintiffs, defendants, accused, prosecutor, charge, and offense among others. Such worlds bring in a court mood. Again, there is no conclusion on the court ruling. The court only breaks the case into five offenses but there is no aspects like a conclusion on the charges placed on the offenders. Corrections to such mistakes would make the summery clear and more understandable.
Case Summery of RV Nicholson
The case was presented before the Court of Appeal on July 31, 2013 by Nicholson alongside other plaintiffs. This happened after a decision about assisted suicide case and euthanasia was made by the European Court of Justice. In the case, it was claimed that the applicants were completely disabled and thus they could hardly commit suicide without assistance. The case was ruled under Section 2 of the Suicide Act 2010, which says that it is unlawful to assist a person in committing suicide. Based on the Act, it was held that the accused (the assistants of the suicides) were guilty of murder. Again, the FPP provided orders on when the accused would be prosecuted. Such an advice was provided with respect to the Purdy v United Kingdom case of 2010. AC45.
The court ruling was open for the accused to defend themselves by clarifying their defense side. The court wanted clarifications on whether there were any defense attempts by the disabled individuals. The court further held that the accused did not observe Article 8 of Human Rights Act 1950. This article 8 of this act fully protects people’s privacy. According to the Act, the court had to decide on whether the DPPP had to point out greater details on the reason behind his discretion when issuing prosecution on assisted murder. The European Court of Human Rights decided on not giving the requested declaration since it was hardly the law court’s obligation to make such decision. Judge Lord did not support this ruling. The parliament was thus suggested as the rightful body to do it. The issue was very controversial for court ruling. The decision of the court to withdraw from the decision was supported by the case of Bland. The court strengthened that the right to life essential in common law as well as under the European Act. This was carried through the claim that there is no right in committing suicide but the only problem is that people are never prosecuted after committing suicide. Any person defending the assistants has to apply to both euthanasia and assisted suicide. The parliament had however declared assisted suicide as a serious crime leading to an imprisonment period of not more than 14 year.
Banning of the blankets was however found to be a lawful action and never breached Article 8, an implication that the court was bound, although it could still have to establish whether banning blankets was proportional to article 8. This case was based on the Human Rights Act 1950, which created enforceable domestic rights to domestic courts. In contrast, it is hardly possible for the domestic courts to initiate the creation of rights over the European Courts since this could oppose the parliamentary will as well as the 1961 Acts. It was thus held the current blankets were covered in Article 8 of the Human Rights Act 1950 and thus the DPPP should not have been required to detest the case.
The DPP policy should not have been accessible or forcible such that any suicide assistance would involve foreseeing the consequences of providing the assistance. The policy was insufficient and unclear to be applied by healthcare practitioners since healthcare professionals need to know waiting time of the DP before they are assisted and ensure that they care for them accordingly. The court finished the ruling by holding that there were no weight given to family relationships in the policy. The policy was very clear that anyone assisting the victims to commit suicide could be prosecuted. The court thus found the assistants guilty of their charges and deserved the necessary prosecutions.
Summary of R. V. Nicholson (Court of Appeal July 31 , 2013).
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This paper reports upon an investigation into the role played by Boda boda in urban transport systems in Chuka town. A Boda boda is motor cycle or a bicycle taxi which provides ‘for hire’ type transport services for passengers and goods. The research investigated the contributions of motorcycle revolution on the economic activities, and explored the measures that might be formulated by the concerned authorities to enhance these economical benefits. The study involved a (n=100) survey of motor cycle operators. That Boda boda serve an identifiable niche market, in the form of short service trips largely for the purposes of accessing the market, going to the work place and transportation of goods and parcels and even acting being used as ambulances. Their ability to pass slow-moving or stopped motor vehicles, enable them to operate efficiently and competitively in congested networks. It is argued that Boda boda taxis have a place in Kenyan urban transport systems, and their introduction have filled service gaps. It is argued that Boda boda operations should be facilitated and supported by the relevant public authorities. The paper concludes with recommendations on measures that authorities might adopt to streamline the Boda boda taxis.
A Boda boda is a bicycle taxi or (in the recent past a motor cycle taxi) with a padded cushion fitted onto a reinforced rear seat, capable of transporting both passengers and goods. (Boda boda started their operations in Kenya in the 1960s in the town of Busia (located on the Ugandan border). From there they spread to other rural and urban areas in both countries, with a faster rate of diffusion occurring in Uganda. Initially they were used to smuggle goods across the Kenyan-Ugandan border (from whence the name, Boda boda, was derived), but in time they transformed into an informal ‘for hire’ type of transport service catering largely to passenger needs. Previous literature on Boda boda operations have centered mostly on Uganda (Olvera et al 2007; Howe & Maunder 2006). However, in Kenyan Boda boda operations have been the focus of a number of student dissertations between 1990 and 2001 (Olvera et al 2007).
Over the past two decades, motorcycle taxis have emerged in East Africa as a motorised variant, and at the expense, of bicycle Boda boda. As in the case of bicycle Boda boda innovation and diffusion, motorcycle Boda boda emerged earlier and spread faster in Uganda -following the deregulation of motorcycle imports in 1994 (Howe & Maunder 2006). Motorcycles taxis in West Africa emerged a decade earlier, in response to a poorly served passenger market and relatively unrestricted market entry, and have grown into a dominant travel mode- known locally as ganzemidjan in Benin, bendskin in Cameroon, kabu kabu in Niger, okada in Nigeria, and oleyia in Togo (Olvera, 2007). Many medium-sized Nigerian cities, for instance, rely solely on okada for intra-city transport services (Cervero, 2000).). In comparison, Kenyan motorcycle taxis have emerged very recently stimulated by the introduction of a zero-rated import duty on motorcycles below 250cc in the 2006 national budget – but, despite spreading fast, would appear from anecdotal reports to be less numerous than bicycle Boda boda at this point in time.
In East Africa, Kenya and Uganda developed the boda-boda in the 1960s. The boda-boda taxis are part of the African bicycle culture; they started in the 1960s and 1970s and are still spreading from their origin on the Kenyan – Ugandan border to other regions. The name originated from a need to transport people across the “no-man’s-land” between the border posts without the paperwork involved with using motor vehicles crossing the international border. This started in southern border crossing town of Busia (Uganda), where there is over two kilometres between the gates and quickly spread to the northern border town of Malaba (Kenya). The bicycle owners would shout out boda-boda (border-to-border) to potential customers. In Kenya and Uganda, the bicycles are more and more replaced by motorbikes. The motorbike taxis have taken the name boda-boda as well, though in much of Uganda, the Swahili term for motorbike, piki-piki, is used to describe motorbike boda-bodas. (Howe & Maunder 2006)
The motorcycle taxi sector in Kenya as a whole and certainly in Chuka is growing strongly. Nationally, the number of authorised motorcyle taxis increased by 350% between 2010 and 2012, while the number of vehicles used in public transport overall increased by 150% (Ministry of Transport 2013). This is in large measure an effect of a streamlined vehicle licensing policy, with more frequent examinations and, many respondents suggested, easier tests. It may also reflect income growth among ordinary Kenyans, which would be consistent with national success in poverty reduction. The growth of the sector means that, barring restrictive policies, it is set to become more significant as a source of employment in the future.
While matatus provide the backbone of Kenya’s public transport system, motorcycle taxis are extremely important. This is especially true for people who live away from major roads, in areas not served by buses. Motorcycles can negotiate even the extremely poor quality roads which serve many of Kenya’s peri-urban, rural and poorer urban neighborhoods. They are also important for people travelling after night, when bus services are limited or nonexistent, and at peak times when their ability to negotiate heavy traffic enables people to move around the city swiftly.
It is against this background that this research study sets upon to investigate the role played by motorcycle Boda boda in urban transport systems in Kenya focusing on Chuka. The research aimed, firstly, to understand the economic benefits brought by Boda boda services, and secondly, to explore the measures that might be formulated by the concerned authorities to manage and support them. With regard to the latter aim, given the growth in motorcycle taxis at the expense of bicycle taxis elsewhere in the region, the research sought to make a recommendation on whether authorities should embrace or resist this trend.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
This research proposal aims at analyzing the contributions of motor cycle taxis commonly known as “Boda boda” in Kenya’s rural towns based on a case study of Chuka town of Tharaka Nithi County, Chuka town is a big town in the county with approximately 100,000 residents who rely on these Boda boda to get food and other economic supplies from the neighbouring villages served by poor roads and hilly terrains that vehicles cannot access. In addition, these residents depend on the same Boda boda for transport whenever they travel to and from these inaccessible villages because of the poor road network.
It is this need that many male youth from and around Kenyan rural towns seized to start the Boda boda taxi transport businesses. Currently the town has approximately 400 Boda boda taxi operators. Their transport operations have booth backward and forward linkages with other sectors of Kenyan rural towns hence the need to analysis Boda boda taxi business owing to the scale of their activities in the transport industry of these towns.
These Boda boda taxis, which are usually motor cycles, trace their history in Eastern Uganda and Busia (a border town with Uganda to the west of Kenya). The term “Boda boda” is derived from the English word “border”. The taxis used to operate from “border to border” hence the current term “Boda boda” taxis. These Boda boda were used to smuggle goods across the two borders (Kenya-Uganda). The operators mostly youth quickly realized that the same Boda boda taxis could be used to carry goods from Kenya to Uganda, and also ferry people in the poor villages of western Kenya. The business spread to other rural towns in the region and the entire country. This was greatly encouraged because according to Kenya 2001 budget report on rural development, 90% of the country roads were not paved and many roads were impassable by vehicles. Accordingly, Boda boda becomes a versatile, quick and reliable form of transportation.
Boda boda taxi definitely creates employment opportunities to the unemployed Kenyans who according to the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics stood at 40 percent in 2011. This creates the need to analyze the contributions of Boda boda to Kenyan rural towns. Boda boda taxis also have contributed to the transport industry mostly ferrying people and goods from main roads to villages off the paved roads. There is also need to carryout out an analysis of Boda boda to understand how they impacted the traders of particularly of agricultural produce.
1.3 Research Objectives
The general objective of the analysis is to establish how Boda boda taxis have contributed to the economic activities in Kenya rural towns.
1. To determine how the Boda boda taxis have created employment opportunities in Kenya rural towns.
2. To find out how Boda boda taxis have enhanced transportation in Kenyan rural towns.
3. To establish how Boda boda taxis have led to levels of doing business.
1.4 Research hypothesis
The primary hypothesis of this research is that:
Introduction of motorbike taxis has brought positive economic outcome for Chuka town
Boda boda taxis have improved the economic status of the riders.
Boda boda have enhanced transportation in Kenyan rural towns.
The activity of Boda boda have improve the levels of doing business in Chuka town
1.5 Research questions
What are the contributions of motorcycle taxi on economic growth of Chuka town
How has boda boda enhanced transportation in Kenyan rural towns?
How has boda boda affected the levels of doing business in Chuka town
1.6 Importance of the study
There is increasing realization of the significance of boda boda riders which has rekindled the interest in this research work on the economic contributions made by boda boda in Chuka town.
The researcher hopes that the outcome of the study will be of immense benefit as it will bring to focus the positive contribution of boda boda business and the informal sector in general to the economic development of Kenyan rural towns, specifically Chuka town. There has been growing concern in the reduction of poverty in the less developed counties by both country and national government; the study will bring to limelight the contribution of boda boda economic growth.
The study will be significant in unveiling the various characteristics of the informal sector economy and subsequently address the miss-feelings towards the sector. Furthermore, the results of the study could be of benefits to the Boda boda riders and the participants in that sector as appropriate recommendations would be made to improve their lots.
Finally, this could be used as spring board of ideas for mobilization of boda boda riders and the informal sector in general towards the main stream of economic development in Tharaka Nithi County.
1.7 Scope of the study
The study examined the effects of motorcycle revolution in Kenya with references to Chuka town; the target population had respondents who included Boda bodas in Chuka town. The study looked at The Economic Contributions of the Motorcycle Taxi (Boda boda) within Chuka town. In addition, the research also sought to know the effects of motorcycle taxi on health and safety and also on traffic rules. The effect of motorcycle transport on users other than the motorcycle taxi businessmen was not undertaken. This could have added more information and insight into the effects of the motorcycle transport revolution.
This chapter gives a review of the main research in economic benefits of motorcycle taxis, defining the motorcycle transportation, reviewing on motorcycle and economic growth and transportation and economic development and then a summary of the literature review. This present study will use empirical literature review because there is lack of theoretical literature on this topic.
2.2 Origin and spread of motorbike taxis in Kenya
It all started at the border between Kenya and Uganda in the ’60 and ’70. Between the border posts of the two countries lies a piece of ‘no-man’s-land’ of about a kilometer (Njega and Maganya 1988). Crossing the border with a motorized vehicle required a lot of paperwork to be dealt with, which took a lot of time. Therefore, often public transport would halt at the one side and the passengers walked to the other side, where they continued their journey. Not everybody felt like walking and locals quickly exploited this by offering people rides on a bicycle (Njega and Maganya 1988). They would be waiting with their bicycle taxis on either side of the land strip. To attract the attention of potential customers, they would shout “Border-Border!”. In time, this degenerated to ‘bodaboda’, a word that is part and parcel of the local culture now, and often being called for in the streets of East-Africa.
From the border the concept quickly spread over a still extending region. Nowadays boda bodas are found in large parts of Kenya and Uganda, parts of Tanzania and even in Congo they have been spotted. In recent times, a motorized alternative is competing with the bicycles: the motor taxi that is called both bodaboda and pikipiki (Diaz, et al, 2010). In flat areas, the bicycle is still the most common though, The picture below show boda bodas at work.
Picture adapted by the researcher
2.2 Factors favoring the emergence of motorbike taxis in Kenya
Other than a simple integration phenomenon, two factors have contributed to the emergence of motorbike taxis in Kenya. We can cite among others, a response to the prevailing transport deficit, lack of employment and the acquisition of several public liberties, problems of mobility encountered by city dwellers and inhabitants of the rural areas.
A response to transport shortages
In Chuka just like all towns of Kenya and worst of all in peri-urban areas, the problem of mobility of persons, resulting from demographic growth is not always accompanied by the means to satisfy the surplus demand for public transport which is posed with acuity (Njega and Maganya 1988). The narrowness of the available roads gives rise to eternal traffic jams on certain road networks in cities. To move from one zone to another, the populations are sometimes obliged to forgo the regular taxi cars to hire the service of a motorbike taxi which has the possibility to slip between vehicles, baffling the elementary rules of the road code.
In the agricultural towns like Chuka, the populations witness great difficulties in their movements between March and June with exceptions of periods of long rains since many roads becomes impassable (Omondi, 2007) In fact, the existing transport services (buses, cars and taxis) are unable to access some areas. The problem of mobility emanates from the fact that because of the bad nature of the roads, the regular taxi cars (cabs) provide their services in the inner circles of the towns and most often only on tarred roads. In certain towns such as Chuka, the taxi cars are found but on the transport bus stations, in motor parks. This situation almost identical to all regions of Kenya where the implantation of motorbike taxis has led to the progressive drop in the use of regular taxi cars which are unable to compete notably as concerns costs and the personalisation of the services rendered. This has been observed in Chuka where by the taxi cars are declining in numbers as motorbike taxis increases.
In all regions of Kenya motorcycle taxis are an individual response to the conjunction of a triple shortage: Shortage of private vehicles, shortages of public transport services and finally of road infrastructure. The development of road infrastructure and basic services has not evolved according to the spatial increase in population whose demands for movement are on a steady increase. The lack of viable infrastructure and the inadequate maintenance of the existing ones are very problematic. In the rainy seasons, the situation is worsen as motorised access to certain zones in the tropical regions are blocked rendering them enclave. The available public transport vehicles avoid these zones causing halts in the movement of people from peripheries to the cities and vice versa. Motorcycles through their flexibility have come to provide a ready solution as they can find their way through the muddy and slippery road tracks.
2.3.2 Lack of formal employment
In Kenya the macro-economic situation characterized by slow economic growth has greatly limited the chances of access to employment and revenue in many families. Between 2007- and 2008, as a consequence of political crisis, the population of job seekers reached 47, 7% of Kenya’s total population (Kenya Bureau of Statistics, 2010).
Youths between the age ranges of 15-30 constitute around 57% of job seekers in the labour market. And this population is on a steady increase with the annual arrival into the labour market of over 5000 degree holders from higher institutions of learning and of the same number issued from secondary education generally with no professional qualification. Contrary to the past decades, the actual unemployment rate since the year 2000 affects more and more degree holders (Kenya Bureau of Statistics, 2010).
It’s thus to curb the situation of the formal labour market that the precarious population developed particular survival strategies in the direction of the informal sector. Transport by commercial motorbikes is one of the sectors which attracted many of the unemployed. The removal of importation tax on motorcycles undertaken by the ministry of finance in 2008 offered an increment to this activity. The activity rapidly developed to become a job opening for many job seekers. With the volume of revenue generated by this activity, able businessmen got interested into the activity and began acquiring tens and even hundreds of motorbikes, offering jobs to the needy.
2.4 Motorcycles transportation
Motorcycles pose interesting challenges in Developing countries that are not faced by the rest of world. Motorcycle comprise 95% of the nation’s private motor vehicle fleet in Vietnam, 84% in Asia, 76% in Cambodia, 28% in Italy and only 4% in the United States (World Bank, 2008). In the last fifteen years the numbers of motorcycles per capita in many Developing Asian nations has doubled (World Bank, 2006). The vehicles are attractive as incomes of families in the region rise, providing an affordable mobility option that is not otherwise available. They provide door-to-door mobility, unmatched navigability in congested road conditions, ease of parking, capacity for passengers and luggage at low cost. In mixed traffic with automobiles, each bike tends to use as much roadway capacity as an auto at congestion levels above Level of Service F. But when roads are most congested and traffic is slowed to crawl, motorcycle speeds and throughput are much higher than automobiles stuck in the same traffic. The proliferation of two- and three-wheeled motorcycles has raised problems with air quality and safety. Their two-cycle engines are inexpensive, easy to maintain, and make efficient use of fuel but are not clean burning (Heyen-Perschon, 2004). The crashworthiness and stability of the vehicles are an obvious concern that tends to dominate much of the urban transport literature concerning these vehicles. In developing countries, pedestrians and cyclists count for the majority of road accident deaths despite the fact that they contribute the least to them (Howe and Maunder 2004).
2.5 Motorcycle and economic growth
Non-motorized transport (NMT) is central to the issue of sustainable transportation. Among the more arguably important aspects of NMT that are sometimes overlooked are bicycle transportation development and accompanying policy reform (Heyen-Perschon 2004). Given the fact that the majority of the world’s poor do not have access to motorized transport, it has been well noted that this should not be the only mode considered for development in Africa, the world’s poorest region (Howe and Maunder 2004; World Bank, 2002). Indeed, the last of ten major urban NMT strategy elements that the World Bank reviews in Cities on the Move provides some impetus for this study: “development of small-scale credit mechanisms for finance of bicycles in poor countries” (World Bank, 2002, 134).
The World Bank has made some studies regarding non-motorized transport in the urban periphery in Sub-Saharan Africa (Starkey et al, 2002). Yet scant academic research has focused on the intermediate technology of bicycles and bike trailers. World Bank researchers note that a wide variety of factors influence differences in rural transportation: “population density, culture, income, topography, climate, or crops and animals” (Starkey et al, 2002).
Some of these same factors, particularly demographics and income, influence choices in urban transport. Just as secondary African cities are often economically linked to primary cities, there is close interdependence with peripheral rural areas that supply agricultural goods, thereby ensuring regional food security. Combined with the general weakness of rural transportation systems in Sub-Saharan Africa, it would therefore seem essential to consider peri urban NMT when discussing urban transit. World Bank reports show a clear link between NMT and the reduction of poverty in both rural and urban settings (Starkey et al, 2002; World Bank 2002).
2.6 Economic Importance of Transportation
Like many economic activities that are intensive in infrastructures, the transport sector is an important component of the economy impacting on development and the welfare of populations (Mozer, 2000). When transport systems are efficient, they provide economic and social opportunities and benefits that result in positive multipliers effects such as better accessibility to markets, employment and additional investments. When transport systems are deficient in terms of capacity or reliability, they can have an economic cost such as reduced or missed opportunities. Starkey et al, (2002); Mozer (2000) asserts that transport also carries an important social and environmental load, which cannot be neglected. Thus, from a general standpoint the economic impacts of transportation can be direct and indirect:
Direct impacts related to accessibility change where transport enables larger markets and enables to save time and costs. Indirect impacts related to the economic multiplier effects where the price of commodities, goods or services drop and/or their variety increases.
Reeder, et al, (1996) underline that, the impacts of transportation are not always intended, and can have unforeseen or unintended consequences such as congestion. Mobility is one of the most fundamental and important characteristics of economic activity as it satisfies the basic need of going from one location to the other, a need shared by passengers, freight and information. All economies and regions do not share the same level of mobility as most are in a different stage in their mobility transition (Reeder, et al, 1996). Economies that possess greater mobility are often those with better opportunities to develop than those suffering from scarce mobility. Reduced mobility impedes development while greater mobility is a catalyst for development. Mobility is thus a reliable indicator of development.
Providing this mobility is an industry that offers services to its customers, employs people and pays wages, invests capital and generates income (Cox, 2010). The economic importance of the transportation industry can thus be assessed from a macroeconomic and microeconomic perspective:
At the macroeconomic level (the importance of transportation for a whole economy), transportation and the mobility it confers are linked to a level of output, employment and income within a national economy. Cox (2010) estimates that in many developed countries, transportation accounts between 6% and 12% of the GDP.
At the microeconomic level (the importance of transportation for specific parts of the economy) transportation is linked to producer, consumer and production costs. The importance of specific transport activities and infrastructure can thus be assessed for each sector of the economy (Cox, 2010). Transportation accounts on average between 10% and 15% of Transportation links together the factors of production in a complex web of relationships between producers and consumers. The outcome is commonly a more efficient division household expenditure while it accounts around 4% of the costs of each unit of output in manufacturing, but this figure varies greatly according to sub sectors of production by exploitation of geographical comparative advantages, as well as the means to develop economies of scale and scope (Horswill and Helman, 2003). The productivity of space, capital and labor is thus enhanced with the efficiency of distribution and personal mobility. It is acknowledged that economic growth is increasingly linked with transport developments, namely infrastructures but also managerial expertise is crucial for logistics. The following impacts can be assessed:
Networks; setting of routes enabling new or existing interactions between economic entities.
Performance; improvements in cost and time attributes for existing passenger and freight movements.
Reliability; improvement in the time performance, notably in terms of punctuality, as well as reduced loss or damage.
Market size; access to a wider market base where economies of scale in production, distribution and consumption can be improved.
Productivity; increases in productivity from the access to a larger and more diverse base of inputs (raw materials, parts, energy or labor) and broader markets for diverse outputs (intermediate and finished goods).
2.7 Transportation and Economic Development
Transportation developments that have taken place since the beginning of the industrial revolution have been linked to growing economic opportunities. At each stage of human societal development, a particular transport mode has been developed or adapted (Kisaalita and Sentogo-Kibalama, 2007). However, it has been observed that throughout history no single transport has been solely responsible for economic growth. Instead, modes have been linked with the function and the geography in which growth was taking place (Elliott et al., 2003). The first trade routes established a rudimentary system of distribution and transactions that would eventually be expanded by long distance maritime shipping networks and the setting of the first multinational corporations. As noted by Diaz et al (2010) major flows of international migration that occurred since the 18th century were linked with the expansion of international and continental transport systems that radically shaped emerging economies such as in North America and Australia. Transport has played a catalytic role in these migrations, transforming the economic and social geography of many nations. Kisaalita and Sentogo-Kibalama (2007) contributing to this subject underlines that concomitantly, transportation has been a tool of territorial control and exploitation, particularly during the colonial era where resource-based transport systems supported the extraction of commodities in the developing world and forwarded them to the industrializing nations of the time.
According to Diaz et al (2010) while some regions benefit from the development of transport systems, others are often marginalized by a set of conditions in which inadequate transportation play a role. Mozer (2000) notes that transport by itself is not a sufficient condition for development; however the lack of transport infrastructures can be seen as a constraining factor on development. In developing countries, the lack of transportation infrastructures and regulatory impediments are jointly impacting economic development by conferring higher transport costs, but also delays rendering supply chain management unreliable (Mozer, 2000; Diaz, et al 2010).
Investment in transport infrastructures is thus seen as a tool of regional development, particularly in developing countries and for the road sector. The standard assumption is that transportation investments tend to be more wealth producing as opposed to wealth consuming investments such as services. Still, several transportation investments can be wealth consuming if they merely provide convenience, such as parking and sidewalks, or service a market size well below any possible economic return, with for instance projects labeled “bridges to nowhere”(Diaz, et al 2010). In such a context, transport investment projects can be counterproductive by draining the resources of an economy instead of creating wealth and additional opportunities.
There is also a tendency for transport investments to have declining marginal returns (Heyen-Perschon, 2004). While initial infrastructure investments tend to have a high return since they provide an entirely new range of mobility options, the more the system is developed the more likely additional investment would result in lower returns. At some point, the marginal returns can be close to zero or even negative, implying a shift of transport investments from wealth producing to wealth consuming. A common fallacy is assuming that additional transport investments will have a similar multiplying effect than the initial investments had, which can lead to capital misallocation (Mozer, 2000). This means quite understandably that the economic impacts of transport investments tend to be significant when infrastructures were previously inexistent or deficient and marginal when an extensive network is already present. Therefore, each development project must be considered independently.
In order to give an economical perspective in the analysis and interpretation of data deriving from our research, a conceptual framework is necessary to variables that will guide us in our analysis and interpretation of data. The following conceptual model has been formulated by the researcher and it will be used in analyzing the economic contributions of the boda bodas.
The above conceptual framework shows that boda boda activities results in economic growth. The independent variables created are shown above. For example, there is increased earning by the boda boda riders from their activities. Increased earning scan be attributed to the fact that the boda boda activities create employment for the riders and related sectors such as motorcycle repairs and retail shops. Boda boda transportation tend to support economic development to the degree they increase efficiency by reducing unit costs and increasing the level of transportation taking place. There is a direct relationship between mobility and economic productivity so boda boda services increases transportation activities and contributes positively to economic growth.
Boda boda increases transport system efficiency and offers productivity gains that filter through the economy in various ways. For example, reduced transportation costs may increase business profits, reduce produce prices, improve service quality (more frequent and faster deliveries), or a combination of these. Even modest efficiency gains can provide significant economic benefits.
3.0 Research Methodology
This chapter describes the methodology that will be used in this research. This chapter covers the research designs, target population, sampling method, and data collection process, the instrument to be used for the data gathering, analysis and presentation. Also the ethical issues will be discussed.
3.2 Research Design
Cassell and Symon (1994) explain that research design is a framework that guides the researcher in carrying out the study. They go on to state that research design links the research questions to the data collected. There are several research designs that a study can employ, these designs are grouped depending on their logic, results, process and objective of the study. It is also possible to describe a single project using different ways.
One of the research designs is quantitative research which is used to measure individuals, cases or units and evaluate limited aspects using numbers. On the other hand, qualitative research normally entails qualitative data and assesses a lot of aspects of a small population of cases over a short or long time and explains those aspects. Similarly, a researcher can use a mixed approach where he combines both quantitative and qualitative research methods.
Therefore, this research will apply a mixed research design to get better results since each design complement another. As noted by Polgar and Thomas (1995), the mixed approach offers more insights in the aspect being researched. Mozer (2000) add that qualitative method gives verbal data instead of numerical values. Therefore, qualitative method does not use statistical analysis, but rather uses content analysis to describe and understand the research findings. Using this method, a researcher uses inductive reasoning and not deductive. Cassell and Symon (1994) explain that the key aspect projected through quantitative methods the validity of the measurement and its reliability. Using these two aspects, the researcher can generalize the findings and have a clear predication of the cause and effect.
This research will use questionnaires and interviews to allow the researcher to get comprehensive information about contributions of boda boda taxis.
3.3 Target population and Sampling strategy
The population is well defined as a set of people, services, elements, events, group of things or households that are being investigated (Ngechu 2002). This research will target boda boda taxis operators in Chuka Town of Tharaka Nithi County.
According to Flower (2002), sample selection has to be in line with the research objectives, and should as well consider practicability of the study. The economic benefits brought by boda boda taxis business are most felt by the operators and their immediate family. However, the general town and other business as well are affected by increased earnings from the boda boda taxis business. The current research seeks to establish the economical benefits of boda boda in Chuka town. This means that the target population has to be at least the people of Chuka. To formulate the sample representative from the targeted population, the researcher used a random sampling system where he targeted those in the boda boda taxi business zeroing in on boda boda operators.
Normally, there are two methods of determining a sample size. This can be done through setting a random size based on the limits of the budget, or by calculating the best sample size based on a desired degree of accuracy and cost, and putting into consideration the standard error method (Ayelet, et al., 2008). The researcher used the first method of selecting a random of 100 respondents will be selected.
3.4 Research Instruments
There are various research instruments that can be used but for this study, the structured or closed enclosed questionnaire will be used. Each item of the questionnaire was developed to address a specific objective of the study. All the questions will be accompanied by an appropriate list of options from which the respondents will select the answer that best describes their situation. A category of ‘other’ will be included to take of those responses which may not fit in the given categories.
3.5 Viability and Reliability
A critical aspect of good research is making sure that the measurement scales used in the questions are reliable and valid (Malhotra, 2007) according to Flower (2002) data collected using empirical design adds no value if it not reliable and valid. Flower (2002) goes on to state that reliability of measurement is needed, though it is not adequate to establish validity. Similarly, Malhotra (2007) asserts that valid results are worthless in case the data measures lacked reliability.
Reliability which is the degree of to which a research instrument yields consistent results or data after repeated trials. This will be achieved by having similar questions in the questionnaire for all participants. In addition, reliability will be reduced by avoiding measure error in data collecting.
On the other hand, validity of an instrument refers to the level to which that instrument assesses what it meant to assess (Malhotra 2007). Validity aims at appropriateness, correctness, meaningfulness and usefulness of specific inferences researchers make based on the data they collected. To attain validity, this study will use questionnaires that comprise questions mainly about contributions of boda boda taxis. Validity was maintained through simple questions in the questionnaires and uniformity in administering of the questionnaire.
3.6 Data collection methods
There are two ways of collecting data to be used in a research; this could be either through secondary data collection or by using primary method. Sekaran, (2003) explains that secondary data entails data collected from past studies, while primary research is data that is collected for the first time. The research will involve both methods; primary and secondary methods.
3.6.1 Secondary data method
Using secondary data collection method, the study employed past information from books, articles, journals and the internet through literature review.
3.6.2 Primary data
Primary research can be obtained through qualitative methods or quantitative ones. For example, qualitative methods include interviews and observations, while surveys and some form of observations are quantitative. In this research, primary data included responses given by respondents.
According to Malhorta (2006) quantitative research mainly requires questionnaires as a data collection tool. The current research therefore used questionnaires to collect its data. The data gathered using these questionnaires will allow the researcher to analysis the link between different variables.
As noted by McDonald and Adam (2003) telephone interviews, face-to-face and mail survey are the main methods applied to gather survey questionnaire. Of late, online survey is gaining popularity in market research because of the rapid adoption of internet technology. After considering several factors, the researcher will administer the questionnaire face-to face data collection method in this research.
Many researchers such as Comley (2007) agree that face-to-face survey gives more valid results compared to other methods because they allow the participants to get clarification of the questions an advantage missing in on-line survey. Comely (2007) as well notes that by using face-to-face survey, the researcher greatly increased the chances of getting all the questionnaires filled since he has a direct contact with the participants, thereby increasing the participation rate. Comley (2007) observes that though paper self-questionnaires have similar strengths like face-to-face, participants take have a chance to seek clarification of the questions being asked compared to self-directed questionnaires. In addition, face-to-face questionnaires have a possibility of eliminating biases like social desirability. The fact that the interviewer is around during the completion of face-to-face questionnaire as well seem to increase the level of honest and reduce social desirability aspects and allows more respondents to freely answer questions (Comely, 2007).
In this present research, the researcher formulated questionnaire and use face-to-face to administer it to the respondents. The questionnaire will contained both open and closed ended questions. The researcher targeted 100 participated to fill the questionnaires, all of them being male boda boda operators in Chuka town. It took the researcher 5 days to complete administration of the questionnaire.
3.9 Data analysis
Data collected was analyzed using both descriptive method and statistical approaches. The information obtained from the interviews was analyzed using descriptive approach, while data obtained from the questionnaires was analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Scientist (SPSS). Charts will be derived using Microsoft Excel 2010 from the SPSS results. Tables will as well be used to present the results obtained from the questionnaires.
3.10 Ethical considerations
Carrying out research requires honesty and integrity (Cassell and Symon, 1994), as a way of acknowledging and protecting the rights of the participants. To make this study ethical, confidentiality, anonymity, voluntary participation and informed consent will be of very high importance.
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ECONOMIC CONTRIBUTIONS OF BODA BODA TAXIS IN KENYAN RURAL TOWNS
What is your age?
What is your gender?
Were you employed before?
Were you self employed or employed?
What is the level of your education?
Is the boda boda taxi you operate yours?
Do you earn enough to save some money?
Was transport easily available before boda boda taxis came?
Are there any parts of the villages that boda boda taxis cannot reach?
Are there times when boda boda taxis cannot operate?
If yes when?
What was the common mode of travelling did people use to travel before coming of boda boda taxis? (Rank them starting with the most common to the least common).
What was the common mode of transport of goods to and from chuka town before the coming of boda boda taxis? (Rank them starting with the most common to the least common).
What is the common mode of travelling did people use to travel after the coming of boda boda taxis? (Rank them starting with the most common to the least common).
What is the common mode of transport of goods to and from chuka town after the coming of boda boda taxis? (Rank them starting with the most common to the least common).
INCREASED BUSINESS ACTIVITIES
Have the business hours increased within chuka town after the coming boda boda taxis?
Have the business hours increased for market centers outside chuka town after the coming boda boda taxis?
Are there market centers/trading centers outside chuka town that have developed because of the influence of boda boda taxis operations?
If yes name them: (1) (2) (3)
(4) (5) (6)
What do you carry most?
Which hour of the day do you transport goods to chuka town for selling?
Which hour of the day do you transport goods from chuka town to outside market retailers (shops/kiosks)?
Name two businesses that have started as result of boda boda taxis operations in Kenya:
Which hour of the day do you transport goods to chuka town?
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“The effectiveness of Budgeting and Budgetary control in Business Organizations: A case study of ADV Telecoms”
A budget is a master document prepared by organization outlining how funds will be sourced and then later used. A budget is just a guideline and is not a must that actual revenue and expenditure must tally with the estimates of the budget. For this reason it is possible that an organization may find use of budget effective or ineffective in its operations. It all depends on the mechanisms that the organization has put in place. It is for these and other reasons that I am planning to carry out this research. Budgetary control on the other hand is management’s exercise of authority over implementing the contents of the budget. Control is vital so as to help the organization realize or achieve its set objectives (Bourne, 2002).
Since it is not possible to study all organizations in Australia, am going to use ADV telecom as my case study. ADV telecom is an Australian telecommunications company that has its headquarters in Australia and branches in the USA, UK and Canada. Its products include call termination, broadband phone, calling cards and hoisting IPBX. Since its inception ADV has positioned itself as an innovative, quality oriented and affordable telecommunications company in Australia. Results obtained from this research may be applicable to all organizations regardless of their size, activity, level of production, number of years in business and etc.
The research problem of this dissertation is to critically analyze the effectiveness of Budgeting and Budgetary control in Business Organizations with special reference to Australia’s ADV telecom.
In this dissertation proposal, am going to explore three major research questions. These are the questions that I hope will help me come up with concrete and valid results of this particular research. These are as follows:
To what degree does ADV telecom embrace Budgeting and Budgetary control in its operations?
How effective/ineffective has been Budgeting and Budgetary control in ADV telecom’s operations?
Does budgeting and budgetary control practiced in ADV telecoms result to lack of initiative and innovativeness, and if so, why
Has Budgeting and Budgetary control helped ADV telecoms realize its objectives?
This particular part of the research will examine in length the existing literature on Budgeting and Budgetary control in Business Organizations. This will start from earlier writings of Management gurus, contemporary world and the latest developments of this important topic. The stand of management authors will also be looked into.
For a long time, the effectiveness of traditional Budgeting and Budgetary control in Business Organizations has been questioned by many authors in the subject. For instance a recent study by Stevens (2000) came up with very interesting findings. Stevens explored not only the extent to which organizations embraced traditional budgetary requirements in their organizations but also the validity of this phenomenal in modern business culture. He found out that business organizations had invested heavily on IT infrastructure, wide range of management tools, activity accounting and business process re-engineering. Even with these new advancements, Stevens found out that Budgeting and budgetary control process remained predominantly the same. In addition he realized that some organizations may have failed due to break down of corporate ethics which was brought about by use of budgets to force realization of certain goals. On the same note a study by Daum found out that traditional budgeting process is not effective because it disempowers the staffs that are in the front line, accelerates down the organization’s response to new market developments and does not encourage information sharing.
Writing on the same topic, Daum (2002) commented that traditional budgetary process is increasingly becoming an unnecessary obstacle in business rather than a road to progress. Daum says that budgeting has been seen as taking too long, too complicated and inflexible. This literally means that we can not adapt fast enough to new market trends like economic trends, changes in tastes and preferences and even adapting to competitor’s strategies.
This section covers the concept of effective budgeting and budgetary control systems associated with companies. As per the research questions; the extent to which ADV telecoms has embraced budgeting and budgetary control systems as well as the impact of budgeting and budgetary control systems in an organization. This part shall discuss the impact budgeting and budgetary control has on the competences of an organization. The competitiveness of an organization can be identified as a function of budgeting and budgetary control. ADV telecoms competitiveness depends entirely on the level of its initiative and innovation. At the same time ADV telecoms like other organization innovation and initiative are constrained by the control culture, external environment, and task/ industrial factors. For the purpose of this study, behavioral implications which are either positive or negative resulting from ADV telecoms organizational structure and budgetary management control culture will be looked at.
Organizational structure is the hierarchy that facilitates the three levels of interpersonal relationship in an organization namely, upward, downward and horizontal. The organizational structure of an organization affects the effectiveness of budgeting and budgetary control systems. Which top management makes the budget together with the subordinate the company nay end up incurring more expenses hence making the budget ineffective? On the other hand when top management acts authoritatively in budget planning the subordinated lack a point for then to also claim for the share of participating in planning for resources hence the organization saves on this wise (Daum, 2002). ADV telecoms budgeting and budgetary control systems rely on this aspect for it to be competitive.
Budgeting is also affected by behavioral issues because human factor is involved in the entire process of its preparation. The interaction of people in budgeting process has got two behavioral issues namely; (Daum, 2002).
Designing the budget process where it is identified who should be involved in the planning and budgeting process and the standard to which the budget should be set to have a positive impact on people’s motivation and performance.
Influencing the budgeting process. How do people try to change the budget and manipulate it towards their own ends?
Another factor to consider in effective budgeting and budgetary control in an organization is management style. Organizations which have inflexible and slow management styles result in ineffective budget development where as organizations which is flexible promotes and encourages an organizational culture of control, Voluntary coordination and novelty (Bourne, 2002). This section has dealt with concepts associated with effective budgeting and budget control systems in an organization. Those concepts will continually be referred to when the researcher’s shall be studying the effectiveness of budgeting doing budgetary control systems in ADV telecoms case study.
Primary data will be collected through in-depth interviews with employees of ADV telecoms who are involved in preparing budgets and other management level employees (Potter, 2006). Both structured and non structured interview techniques will be employed and will take the form of friendly discussion at ADV telecoms. To ensure that the interview takes the required direction i.e. does not deviate from the intended purpose, the interviewer will be guided by a set of basic questions on the topic of research. However, through the discussion flexibility and necessary deviations will be maintained to keep the environment friendly and comely. In-depth interviews shall be conducted so that the researcher can understand properly the existing budgeting and budgetary control systems at ADV telecoms (Potter, 2006). Some selected respondents who shall include heads of budgets, senior manger in network planning department, project planning and budgeting division’s manger, and chief engineer in charge of innovations shall be selected from ADV telecoms and interviewed separately by oral means for about one hour each. In addition to the above respondents, senior manger in networking and planning and other manager who are responsible for spearheading company development and are involved in providing necessary information on capital budget shall be interviewed so that more information the topic of study is achieved. To enrich discussions all the interviews shall be recorded instead of taking notes during the interview sessions. Key information which shall be gathered shall include budgeting and budgetary control processes of ADV Telecoms Company, problems encountered by project manages in implementing the budgetary process and how budgeting and budgetary control process impact innovations and initiative in the company(Potter, 2006).. The in-depth interviews were selected as tools of collecting qualitative data because of its ability to gather personal information and views and other relevant information concerning budgeting and budgetary processes without bias. And because the study investigates behavioral aspect of budgetary and budgeting control, the data collected from each respondent shall be subject to personal bias (Davila, T, et.al, 2005). Therefore to avoid gathering wrong information, the interviews were conducted in a manner to scrutinize the validity of the information gathered from different parties.
The results from the interview shall provide plenty of information and an in-depth understanding of the prevailing conditions around budgeting and budgetary control at ADV telecoms organization. In-depth- interviews are also expected to assist in collecting extra information that is relevant to the characteristics of respondents and the environment which often are important in interpreting the results. Any unsystematic raw data which will be collected will be edited and arranged so that errors and omissions are detected. Incase further r clarification will be required, relevant respondents will be contacted as will be found necessary. Finally, the findings will be complied and then analyzed.
Another qualitative method of data collection which shall be used in data collection on effectiveness of budgeting and budgetary control at ADV telecoms is participant observation. As the name depicts, this is a way of collecting information from the target group trough observation (Potter, 2006). The researcher participates in all the activities of the individuals being observed rather than just being an observer. The research has got two roles that of an observer and participant. According to the research question “the effectiveness of budgeting and budgetary control in ADV telecoms limited organization, information can best be gathered by the researchers being involved in budgetary activities of ADV telecoms so that they may realize the effectiveness of the organizations budgetary process and its effectiveness. By participating the researcher will be able to know the three qualitative aspects of budget approach which include authoritative, consultative, and participatory (Potter, 2006). The researcher will participate in ADV telecoms budgetary meetings and seminars so that they will be able to get “emic” perspective of ADV telecoms concerning the effectiveness of budgeting and budgetary control systems practiced in that organization. During participation the researcher shall conduct minor interviews based on open ended questions and collect all relevant materials that shall be found useful for data set up. Participatory observation also enables the researcher to build good relationship with the staff members and this improves the interaction hence more information can be extracted concerning the budget by observations of the relationship between the budgetary team and the management team(Potter, 2006).. To collect enough information by using this kind of tool, the researchers will ensure that they attend all financial, social and any meeting relevant to discussing the effects of budgeting and budgetary control systems available at ADV telecoms. Participatory observation qualitative method of collecting raw data is one of the best methods for it gives the researcher a chance to examine the subject behaviors, make notes as well as make conclusions which are not influenced by the subjects(Potter, 2006). Thus this kind of method is the best especially where sensitive are like finances and budgets are discussed.
The researcher must be careful so that he/she may not be influence and loose objectivity by going native. Generally participatory observation method engages the researcher in the activities of the case being studied and enables the researcher to try to learn the kind of life in the organization as an “insider” while remaining an “outsider”. The researcher shall make objective notes in the field note book, record all the informal meetings and interaction with the workers of ADV telecoms and also record al the information communicated through mass media (Potter, 2006).
Participant observation shall provide the researcher with the understanding of the operations of ADV telecoms in the line of budgeting and budgetary control systems practiced their. This method will also enable the researcher to understand other factors which were not known when the research was being designed. This will be a boost to the research since the research will provide the exact situation as it is at the budgetary department of ADV telecoms and data will be analyzed so that the conclusions derived at will be accurate and relevant.
Qualitative content analysis
Qualitative content analysis is a method of analyzing written, observed, verbal or even visual communication data. It is mostly used in arts and social sciences where qualitative data collection method is widely applied. This method was for the first time used to analyze newspapers, hymns and magazines. Qualitative content analysis is an objective and systematic means of quantifying and describing otherwise qualitative phenomena. Using this method the researcher is able to test theoretical issues to understand the data collected. By grouping a given qualitative phenomena with same characteristics, it becomes possible to analyze it the same way you could do to quantitative data (Mayring, 2000).
In this particular research, I am intending to use this method to some degree so as to help me get some information on qualitative aspects of this project that can not be quantified. Such data will cover issues to do with employee’s attitude towards use of Budget and budgetary control, employee satisfaction, how effective has it been in addressing these concerns among other phenomena’s. In order to effectively realize the potential of this method I will do it step by step, taking the necessary precautions so as not to fail mid way.
The first step will consist of collecting data on the various issues that I would like to address. Of course this will be deduced from the research questions. Data will be obtained from both primary and secondary materials. This will include interviews, opinions, attitudes and even observations made to my respondents in this survey (Berg, 2001). For example I may ask the finance manager as to what degree does he conform to budgetary requirements of the organization? Similarly an employee may be asked to give opinion on how budgeting affects him or her. After collecting data the next step will be to define the unit of analysis that I‘d like to use. All the data whether in the form of sentences, words or even paragraphs will need to be unitized before they are encoded. This is to make the analysis and comparability of findings easier. It is important to note here that under qualitative analysis we use themes rather than physical linguistic units to encode information (Berg, 2001).
The third step will be to categorize the themes and coding scheme. This will involve placing the themes in categories according to how they share characteristics or what I want to achieve. This can be done both deductively and inductively using three major criteria which are earlier studies, relevant theories or better still the data I will have collected. To ensure consistency I will develop a coding manual which among other things will define category names, rules for assigning codes and examples. Next I will pilot test the system just to be sure that everything is in order and will output the desired information. If the coding system proves to be valid and working I will go ahead with my research otherwise I will revise everything or make necessary amendments to avoid arriving at invalid results (Mayring, 2000).
The fifth step will be to code all the text that I will have collected for subsequent analysis. During this process I will try and avoid “drifting into an idiosyncratic sense of what the codes mean” (Schilling, 2006). I will also maintain an open and flexible mind so as to accommodate any new developments that may emerge. When am through with this I will proceed and analyze my data to get the answers to my research questions.
Finally I will draw my concusions from this and proceed ahead with reporting the findings of my research. Qualitative content analysis together with the other two methods are an indispensable tool in conducting researches related to social sciences owing to their nature, thus all efforts should be made to perfect it and enhance our research horizons.
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budgetary slack”, Accounting, organizations and Society, Volume 30,
Andrew was born on 14th July 1996 in Abbotsford British Columbia to James and Catherine, both Canadian citizens by birth, although Andrew’s paternal parents were black French immigrants. Andrew’s family was however forced to relocate Vancouver when Andrew was just 8 years old, after the father had been arrested and charged with armed robbery in November of 2004. He was found guilty and sentenced to 6 years in prison. In a bid to protect him from the stigma that Andrew would undoubtedly be subjected to and also fend for her family, Catherine opted to move to Vancouver. Catherine, in a bid to further protect Andrew and herself, successfully filed for a divorce and full custody after the conclusion of James’ hearing in 2005. Although there were no financial problems at first, Catherine found it hard to support the family of two on her own, a situation made worse by her addiction to alcohol as from late 2008. According to Andrew, the lack of support from both his paternal and maternal grandparents, by choice in the case of the former, but as punishment in the case of the latter, due to Catherine’s choice to marry someone they did not approve of. These family dynamics combined to create a very difficult environment for Andrew. To add to a difficult environment and unbearable circumstances at home, Andrew also found fitting into his new surroundings a bit difficult, mainly due to his ethnic background (Cullen & Agnew, 2002). As a bi-racial, Andrew found it very difficult to fit in from a very early age, as in most cases, both sides of the divide feel uncomfortable associating with him. This has resulted in name calling, bullying, and at times outright discrimination. This has meant that school has been a difficult place for Andrew to be, a factor that played a key role in his decision to quit school aged just 14 in 2010 after completing his elementary education. After quitting school, he did some menial jobs before “needs” forced him into a life of crime in late 2010. Initially, Andrew claims all he did was engage in petty theft and pick pocketing, before graduating to burglary. His big career break however, came in mid 2011 when he joined the Red Scorpions gang; already an established gang at the time, after being introduced by a friend he refused to name. He then started distributing and selling drugs. Mostly he admits to selling marijuana to other school children, as well as selling cocaine on a few instances, though he claims he has never abused drugs. He was arrested and charged with possession with intent to distribute in late November 2012.
Andrew attended Abbotsford Elementary School, between 2000 and 2004, before transferring to False Creek Elementary school in Vancouver, following their move from Abbotsford. He therefore, studied the latter parts of his elementary education in False Creek, which he joined in Grade 4, leaving in Grade 8 in 2010. As part of the condition for his sentence, Andrew has been forced to rejoin high school in 2013, and is currently attending Century High School, in the hope of receiving a diploma in 2017. In the future, Andrew hopes to pursue a degree in Counseling and Psychology at Vancouver Community College.
Due to difficulties fitting in as a bi-racial and part of a minority, Andrew has over the years found it very difficult to develop community connections. Although he admits to having a soft spot for basketball, the situation he encountered in elementary school made it very difficult for him to seriously participate in team sports, a phobia that he seemingly carried on into his interactions within the community. Out of shame and a need to keep their family’s affairs private due to his mother’s struggles with alcohol, and the potential involvement of child services with the discovery of the true situation at home, Andrew opted to keep a very low profile within the community. Andrew even admits to finding it very difficult to rejoin the community and develop proper connections, although he does admit that the fact that his mother successfully beat her addiction in March last year has made things a lot easier. Andrew has however joined a group within the community to help provide support to children who feel they do not fit in, in one way or another, due to race, academic performance, and appearance amongst other attributes. This step he claims was motivated by the realization of the importance of support systems and guidance, especially in the lives of those who struggle to fit in, regardless of their reasons for not fitting in.
Throughout our interview, Andrew came across as a character with good listening and communication skills. Further, despite his protests, he also appeared to possess very good presentation skills. Andrew himself admits to being confident, and to possessing good listening skills, particularly active listening. Due to his experiences, Andrew claims that, he is also a very empathetic individual, a skill he claims to have developed due to the fact that he can relate to what most people go through, especially the other youths in his support group.
Areas of Improvement:
Due to his experiences as a child and growing up, Andrew admits that he finds it very difficult to trust other people: which makes it very difficult to socialize. He therefore, feels that his social skills are not as good as they should be, especially considering his level of self confidence and good communication skills.
Peer Group Dynamics:
As already indicated above, Andrew finds relating with his peers harder than it should be. While he attributes part of these difficulties to his experiences growing up, more so to the difficulties fitting in, he also credits his current legal status as a juvenile delinquent for some of the difficulties (Axelrod, 1997). He however, claims that in a way, it keeps him on his toes, as he finds it much easier to relate with the other youths in his support group.
Conflict with the Law:
Andrew was arrested and charged in November 2012 for possession with intent. He was arrested while in the process of selling marijuana to 3 students at a coffee shop. He was therefore, charged with possession with intention to distribute before a youth court. Sentencing was done using the Youth Criminal Justice Act, section 42(2)(p). This was due to the fact that it was Andrew’s first offence, as well as the fact that he was a minor going through difficult circumstances of neglect and abuse. Further, the fact that Andrew was only found with marijuana, as opposed to other hard narcotics like cocaine or heroin, also helped tremendously.
Andrew was sentenced to a deferred custody and supervision sentence of 6 months, with the conditions being that he joins a support group, continues his studies and avoids engaging in any other criminal activity or risk serving part of the sentence in custody. These strict mandatory conditions were instituted based on subsections 105 (2) and (3). Further, a provincial director charged with supervising Andrew, to who he was to report to periodically, was assigned to him (Endres, 2004).
Although it is still too early to tell the exact outcome of the sentence and interventions employed, the fact that Andrew has been forced to rejoin school is definitely a step in the right direction.
Clearly, the interventions used were all aimed at ensuring rehabilitation and reintegration into the society. Further, the sentence also attempts to limit the effect the application of the tag of juvenile delinquent could do to the offender, more so considering that it was his first offence. Rehabilitation, it is hoped, will be achieved through the threat of punishment, as the sentence is deferred and any bad behavior could result in the offender being taken into custody, not to mention the fact that the offender is now answerable to the provincial director (Mccaslin, 2005). Reintegration efforts include the move to have Andrew rejoin school, as well as join a support group. The effects of these interventions are yet to be witnessed, as the interventions are barely 3 weeks old, although the most significant one of note is Andrew’s decision to rejoin high school and continue with his education.
All the problems expressed by Andrew, indicate that his delinquent behavior is the result of neglect, as well as a lack of social control. There is therefore, a need to enforce closer external control, as well as provide a role model for him to emulate, both tasks the mother must take up. In addition, encouraging the mother to resolve issues she may have with her husband, he parents in law, as well as her own parents, could go a long way towards helping resolve the family issues at the root of Andrew’s negative behavior. In line with this, perhaps the best program for Andrew and his family to participate in is the family support program provided by the John Howard Society of North Island (Vancouver Island, n.d).
Axelrod, P. (1997). The Promise of Schooling: Education in Canada, 1800-1914.
Cullen & Agnew (2002). Criminological Theories
Endres, K. (2004). The Youth Criminal Justice Act: The New Face of Canada’s Youth Criminal Justice System. Family Court Review. 42(3). pp. 526–539
Mccaslin, W. (2005). Justice as Healing: Indigenous Ways. Washington DC: Living Justice Press.
The European Union faces one of the most difficult challenges since its increased financial arrangement under the EU, which apparently has some members left out due to their national interests. The UK is an example of the EU nations outside the Eurozone, but the impact of the Eurozone crisis currently witnessed does not appear to be selective. Contagion impact fast catches up with the UK and as the recessionary impacts continue to threaten smaller economies in the Eurozone, bigger economies outside the Eurozone cannot feel safe anymore. This project interrogates the impact of UK’s policy towards the Eurozone and the potential risks faced by the rest of the world. The unofficial interviews conducted on the UK’s delegation to the recent European summit in Brussels finds out how the opinion of the policy makers favours direct involvement of the UK into the Euro crisis. From the findings, a conclusion to the effect that the UK must improve its Eurozone policy is formulated.
Opinion has emerged that the United Kingdom limited terms of involvement of the European Union in the Eurozone when compared to other economic powerhouses does the economic crisis in Europe more harm than good. On the other hand, proponents of the peripheral role that the UK has taken in resolving the economic challenges in the Eurozone claim that it is the best approach available for the domestic economy. Various perspectives taken on the debate however fail to quantify the magnitude of the costs and benefits that the UK policy presents to its domestic economy and development. In a comprehensive deliberation on the various risks involved in determining the most sustainable approach for the Eurozone and the UK, this research project embarks on a consultative interrogation of cues to make a conclusion as proposed by the thesis.
1.2 Thesis Statement
The hands-off approach adopted in the UK’s Eurozone crisis policy affects the recovery progress of the domestic economy as well as reduces the value of confidence shown towards stability of the Eurozone monetary and fiscal ambitions.
1.3 Aims and Objectives
The project aims to enumerate the significance of a unified and homogenous contribution of the European economic powerhouses to achieve the real benefits of the Eurozone. Specific aims and objectives of the project therefore involve:
Highlighting the importance of full economic cooperation and contribution by Eurozone members and other European economic powers
Establishing the volatility of a disjointed contribution by the EU and of the economic body
To demonstrate the risks faced by the Eurozone by virtue of UK’s peripheral presence in its economic matters
To support UK’s direct involvement in the Eurozone using cost-benefit analysis
To attribute Eurozone’s current poor recovery from debt crisis to disharmony in membership contribution
1.4 Research Rationale
The dominant debate in Europe currently revolves on how the political governance and leadership have failed to deliver sustainable development to overcome the economic volatility occasioned by recent economic crisis. Governments continually find it difficult to overcome their liability in public debt fueling the Eurozone debt crisis yet the measures implemented today seem as volatile as the entire crisis. Cooperation of German and French governments in the resolution of the economic crisis facing the Eurozone appear as the only positive indication that the powerhouses of the European Union can turn around the volatility of the economy. The bail-out plans proposed to rescue national governments’ ability to meet their expenditure cannot continue without the appropriate support from all the great economies of Europe.
Lack of homogenous cooperation from across the UE and Eurozone will bring down Eurozone economic framework.
Integration of more EU nations such as the UK into the direct resolution of Eurozone crisis will slow down economic development in Europe due to the risks involved.
The UK plays an integral role in the EU and despite the fact that it is not a part of the Eurozone economic arrangement, a majority of the nations in the Eurozone constitute virtually half of its export market. Under the considerations of the blow that economic crisis to the largest single market destination, closer cooperation with eth Eurozone cooperation from the UK than currently underway would protect vital economic interests. Such involvement would support the UK to mitigate the impact of the crisis better than a hands-off approach due to contagion influence currently experienced.
2. Literature Review
The debt crisis in the Eurozone emerged when the debt potential of nations across the Eurozone expanded within the platform of unified monetary and central bank systems. Inability of the Eurozone to set borrowing regulations due to lack of proper policy systems regulating tax and revenue regimes across the jurisdiction opened loopholes in the GDP to debt balance. According to Williams (2012, para.8) smaller economies borrowed more than they could raise leading to the debt crisis, with countries such as Greece and Italy borrowing above their GDP (160 percent and 120 percent respectively). Bigger economies in the Eurozone such as Germany and France found themselves overwhelmed by bail-out calls and reluctance of the EU nations outside the Eurozone to support them went increasingly futile. However, the negative impact of such a crisis poses a threat to the whole of Europe and potentially the entire world and action of European economies, together, cannot be underestimated. If Germany’s direct involvement is anything to rely on, the UK needs to hinge its recovery from supporting ailing economies to recover too (Fhbrussels 2012, para.6). Exclusion of the UK from a direct role as Germany and France sends mixed reactions on the stability of the foundations of European economy. Perhaps a tighter cooperation between the European nations as led by the big economies would send the desired optimism among the Eurozone members. In view of the importance of the stability of the Eurozone to the economy of the UK, all considerations to secure the resolution of the crisis outweigh any conservative ideology that defies such integration debates.
Since the beginning of the Eurozone crisis, the United Kingdom has distanced herself from what is happening. In the late 2011, 26 European leaders out of the 27 European Union member states supported budget and tax pact to address the Eurozone debt crisis. The United Kingdom refused to join others. This is because the Prime Minister David Cameron argued that he had to protect the key interests (financial markets included) of the British. All the 17nations using the euro accepted the deal while nine nations indicated that they would sign up. The 26 member states have suggests that the euro is very stable and its use is for the common good of the Eurozone. Though Britain agreed that the euro was for the interest of the country, Cameron (Prime Minister of the United Kingdom) did not sign the treaty because it did not offer proper safeguards for the United Kingdom (Morris 2011, p1).
Since the occurrence of the euro crisis, appeals for the European Union referendum have become gradually important. A recent survey suggests that approximately 80% of the Britons want the vote. The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom cannot ignore the developing pressure coming from the Conservative ranks. The crisis has developed a new political momentum in the euro zone and Britain must respond to it. If Britain fails to respond, it will be at a risk of becoming disregarded as a non-member of the European community. Cameron promised his critics a tough stance in Brussels. Cameron argued that the short-term concern for Britain is to offer support to euro zone in resolving its crisis. The interest of Britain is a fiscal union, a banking union, and euro bonds. However, he was quick to note that he would not assent to the necessary changes made in the European Union treating without getting concessions in return (Evers and Volkery 2012, p1).
Possible risk to the financial and legislation support needed to keep Europe united is the series of legal challenges by the defenders of constitutional rights and Eurosceptic politicians. For instance, the constitutional court of Germany has had to deliberate contribution in the primary Greek financial rescue programmer and the validity of various financial stability measures. The rulings suggest that such challenges are not likely to disrupt the process. Nations such as Estonia and Ireland are also making challenges. Despite the efforts made to restore market confidence, most of the people contemplate the probability of a nation (nations) leaving the Eurozone. It seems that contingency plans for different possibilities are being made behind closed doors. However, it is important to note that there are no provisions that permit a nation to depart from the Eurozone, however, the provisions can be added through amendments. However, this process cannot happen overnight, it will take a considerable amount of time (Noked 2012, p1).
3.1 Research Action Plan
The task was done in a period three months. In the first month, a personal interview with David Cameron (The Prime Minister of United Kingdom) was done. Other activities included include random distribution of questionnaires to various government officials and finance officials concerning the issue of Eurozone crisis.
In the second month, analysis of the personal interviews and questionnaires was done and the results compiled.
The tasks were reviewed in the third month. The tasks reviewed included the interview done, questionnaires filled and the results of the whole process.
The participants were monitored on a weekly basis. The method for monitoring was the participant monitoring. The participants were required to fill out weekly monitoring forms during the research period.
The research strategy used was personal interviews and the use of questionnaires. The data collected was analysed using SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences).
3.2 Procedure for Why Eurozone Crisis Is a Threat to Global Economy
The resources for the research came from donations and grants offered by the university, organizations and interest groups. The results of the research were analyzed using statistical tools such as SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences). The reliability of the research procedures were measured by the extent to which they yielded similar results on repeated trials. In this case, a number of trials were made to test the reliability of the research procedures. The validity of the research was measured by the extent to which they answered the research questions, for instance, if the respondents were capable of answering questions concerning Eurozone crisis. The variable’s (Britain) approach was negatively affecting the Eurozone.
3.3 Data Collection Tools
The data collection tools used in this research included personal interviews and the use of questionnaires. These tools assisted in answering the research questions. However, there are important things to note about these data collection tools. The data generated from these tools was qualitative in nature, that is, it was in the form of words. In designing the questionnaire, the following things were taken into consideration; theme and cover letter, instructions for completion, appearance, length, order, coding, and the type of questions (Thames Valley University 2012, p1). The theme and cover letter of the questionnaire was based on the research questions. The theme was “why the United Kingdom was a threat to the stability of Eurozone.” A cover letter was written to explain all things concerning the questionnaire and how it was to be conducted, and how the information was to be used. The length of the questionnaire was moderate since not many questions were asked.
Coding was important since the data collected was to be analysed using a statistical package. The questions used were simple, short, and to the point. It is worth noting that open-ended questions were used. This is because they permitted further elaboration of the matter or issue by the respondent. Questions used and answered in this case included; how safe was the United Kingdom from the Eurozone crisis, how the crisis affected nations like the United States. As stated before, the questions used were based on the hypothesis and the research questions. The questionnaires were distributed to the randomly selected government officials and finance officials who attended the recent forum at Brussels and were collected in a period of one week.
In personal interview, unstructured form of interview was used. This form of personal interview was very important since it resulted in thorough elaboration of the question or the issue. When planning for the interview, some things were taken into consideration. All areas that required information were listed. The type of interview used was unstructured personal interview. The areas had to be transformed into real questions (for instance, was the United Kingdom safe from the Eurozone crisis?). The last things taken care of included making an appointment with the respondent. In this case, the respondent was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron. Thus, unstructured personal interview was used to collect information from the Prime Minister.
Findings relied on the data collection techniques employed in the research, mainly the Eurostar statistics provided for the various European nations’ economies and the interview responses collected from the UK delegation to the just concluded European summit in Brussels on 29th June 2012. The timing of the venue was appropriate since it was possible to find the government officials in a single sitting as opposed to making several appointments in an ordinary setting. The British prime minister and three other treasury officials from the delegation were interviewed on an open ended questionnaire to find out their opinion on UK’s policy to the Eurozone. Coding the data for appropriate qualitative procedures gave the following interpretation on need to change Eurozone policy.
Support of current policy
Support of further cooperation
Despite the official opinion of the UK government that the EU direct involvement into monetary and fiscal policies was a risky engagement for the European nations, support for the Eurozone nations provided a beneficial position for the nation a majority of the respondents. It was apparent that the general reluctance of the UK to engage in a more direct financial role in the EU was a political motivation as opposed to an economic development decision. The political debate generated across the UK points at a possibility of a long battle between the supporters of the Euro debate. According to the British Prime Minister in his interview, it is not entirely a lost battle for the Eurosceptics to continue holding a position against further involvement of the UK into the Eurozone debt turmoil since there are benefits of protecting UK as it stands (personal communication). However, the score of this opinion from the rest of the delegation indicates that there are sympathizers opting for a more direct involvement than currently practiced.
3.5 Analysis and Interpretation of the Data
The analysis resulting to the coded classification of qualitative data was based on using logistic regression. Logistic regression is a method of analysis in SPSS. Logistic regression can be used to assess the relation of multiple independent variables and a dependent variable. In this situation, the dependent variable was the United Kingdom (Britain) approach and the multiple independent variables were nations from the Eurozone. In logistic regression, binary dependent variables are required. The variables are usually coded 0/1 and they suggest if a condition is present or not, or if the event happened or did not happen. For instance, if the variable is coded zero, the event probably did not happen and if it is coded one, the event probably happened. It is important to note that there are two values of dependent variable (non-occurrence or occurrence) and they are important in the prediction of the possibility of something occurring. In other words, logistic regression finds the association between the independent variables and the possibility of occurrence. It is worth noting that logistic regression is effective at approximating the possibility that an event will happen. As stated before, logistic regression develops estimated for the probability that an event will happen under given set of conditions. Logistic regression has the capability of constructing multivariate models and takes in control variables (Grace-Martin and Sweet 2008, p158).
From the data collected it was evident that the lack of homogenous cooperation for the European Union will bring down Eurozone. Thus, the hypothesis was supported by the data collected. Most of the respondents were of the opinion that the hard stance by Britain not to involve herself in the affairs of the Eurozone was not beneficial to the stability of the Eurozone. They also suggested that Britain was too cautious that its interests would be threatened if it was to agree to the treaty. Although Britain had admitted that euro would bring stability to Eurozone, the nation was still adamant that it would not jeopardise her interests. Personal interview with the Prime Minister of Britain generated some information of the unwillingness of the United Kingdom to indulge herself into the affairs of the Eurozone. The Prime Minister noted that the interests of Britain were not considered when the treaty was formulated, and thus, it will not take part despite the fact that it was beneficial to the nations in the Eurozone. He also stated that the referendum vote was not important at that moment because it would change Britain’s association with the European Union.
The Prime Minister was quick to state that even if Britain was to be removed from the European Union membership, it will not affect the stability of the Eurozone. However, these sentiments differed from what finance officials stated. The finance officials indicated that the stance held by Britain would affect the stability of the Eurozone. They also stated that Britain was slowly being affected by the Eurozone crisis. The sentiments were supported by the increasing pressure by the Conservatives to have the referendum vote. Thus, from the results gathered, it was evident that Britain’s stance was going to affect the stability of the Eurozone. Other than affecting the stability of Eurozone, the stance was also going to affect the stability of Britain, politically and economically. Based on logistic regression, Britain (a dependent variable) was going to influence the stability of the Eurozone. The variable Britain was coded one, thus, the probability of the event occurring was very high.
4. Conclusions and Recommendations
Despite the fact that the UK government faces a divided house a home on the foreign economic policy with special attention to the Eurozone, a coordinated approach backed by national interests in the rich market must take centre stage and precedence over political arguments. Indeed, the entire continent as well as the entire global economy faces a difficult and trying economic period of recent history that can only find a solution in the type of cooperation that puts every European’s interest at heart. A segregated approach as practiced by those states that want to protect their local currency must face appropriate condemnation if the economic gains provided by the Eurozone to such nations do not facilitate the formulation of a desirable economic decision.
As illustrated from the outcomes of the interviews conducted to the respondents as given in the data section above, the mixed opinion from a government delegation ought to provide a homogenous portrayal of the interests of the British people. However, the misinterpretation of the underlying issues for Britain’s involvement in Eurozone acts as the major hindrance towards mitigation of negative impact emerging from the ailing economies. To support the opinion of the delegation, as divided as it is, a lot of work needs to be done to convince the UK leadership that the conservative interests of the nations should not continue to pose threats to national development as well as that of the rest of the EU.
The most advisable route to be taken by the European nations, led by the UK should involve a more powerful involvement in financial affairs of Europe, with a cost benefit analysis forming the main decision anchor. Nations in the EU, both members and non-members of the Eurozone must integrate their development contributions towards stability of the EU and Eurozone. Supporting the main market where most of the EU nations conduct international business will not only be a show of goodwill and confidence in the EU but also a responsibility of every nation to the rest of the world. In terms of the debate going on in the UK on whether to have a more direct role in the EU, political interests must not hijack national interests in terms of the gains that the nation stands to lose if the Eurozone comes down collapsing. It will increasingly appear tenable and logical for stronger economic ties to be established for better cooperation inside the EU as opposed to individual segregation of nations that would be occasioned by a collapse of the Eurozone. Withdrawal of the small economies from the Eurozone must be discouraged as their isolated recovery projector would be worse than when in the assistance of other nations within the Eurozone. Firmer actions such as austerity plans to reduce excesses will increasingly form part of recovery paths in Europe as opposed to risky borrowing, which forms a huge part of the fear possessed by the UK. In view of the recent developments in the Eurozone management, bail-outs delivered to nations worst hit by the impacts of the debt crisis have stringent compliance regulations to alleviate risks of default, which captures the fears of potential supporters such as the UK.
4.3 Areas Future Consideration
The conversion of the EU into a better monetary bloc will eventually be a tricky path for the UK to isolate herself and time will be ripe for the appropriate preparations to be made in case the unconceivable came knocking. Despite the fact that the idea of entry into the Eurozone seems unpleasant by nearly all of the population in the UK, testing times still lie ahead for possible complications in case the bloc continually isolates Eurozone non-members. The UK can only work towards a better cooperation with the rest of the Eurozone in a setting likely to favour an isolated capacity as opposed to moves that seem to undermine the integrity of the Euro.
Evers, M., & Volkery, C. (2012) Euro crisis fuels debate on British EU referendum [online], Spiegel Online. Available from: <http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/euro-crisis-fuels-calls-for-british-eu-referendum-a-842304.html> [accessed 3 July 2012].
Fhbrussels, (2012) Eurozone crisis challenges UK role in Europe, [online] Available from <http://publicaffairs2point0.eu/2012/06/10/eurozone-crisis-a-game-changer-for-uk-in-europe/> [Accessed 3 July, 2012].
Grace-Martin, K., & Sweet, S. A. (2008) Data analysis with SPSS: A first course in applied statistics, Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon.
Morris, C. (2011) Euro crisis: UK alone as Europe agrees fiscal impact [online], BBC. Available from: <http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-16115373> [accessed 3 July 2012].
Noked, N. (2012) The Eurozone crisis and its impact on the international financial markets [online]. Available from: <http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/corpgov/2012/06/19/the-eurozone-crisis-and-its-impact-on-the-international-financial-markets/> [accessed 3 July 2012].
Thames Valley University. (2012) Dissertation guide [online]. Available from: <http://brent.tvu.ac.uk/dissguide/hm1u1/hm1u1fra.htm> [accessed 3 July 2012].
Williams, Trevor. (2012) Decoding the Eurozone crisis: How does the Eurozone crisis affect UK markets? [online] Available from <http://www.guardian.co.uk/small-business-network-partner-zone-lloyds-tsb/decoding-the-eurozone-crisis> [Accessed 3 July, 2012].
1. What is the impact of the Eurozone to the UK’s economy with respect to considerations of improved interaction with the EU?
2. Is the current UK’s involvement in the EU responsible to the volatility of the economy in Europe?
3. Are there ways in which the UK could enhance its role in resolving the Eurozone crisis or is it beyond its economic scope and responsibility?
4. What are the indications that the UK will increasingly integrate into the Eurozone affairs?
5. Are there ways in which the Eurozone management would facilitate its own security and that of non-members such as the UK?
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JPMorgan Chase’s scandal in the summer of 2012 revealed the underhand dealings that involve the manipulation of financial reports so as to create a picture that is different from the real situation of the company’s finances. The company was found by government investigators to have devised manipulative schemes that changed or modified money-losing power plants into incredible profit centers. On the same note, one of the senior executives was found to have given misleading and false statements under oath. Of particular concern, however, is the fact that the trading losses to the tune of $5.8 billion from investment decisions by the Chief Investment Office (CIO) was concealed by the falsified first quarter reports provided to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Nevertheless, the SEC and the CFTC have a role to prevent fraud especially with regard to high-risk gambles. SEC requires all public companies to disclose all meaningful financial information, as well as any other useful information thereby allowing investors to make their own judgments on whether to hold, sell or buy a certain security (Fleuriet, 2008). This allows investors to make sound decisions on their investment thereby resulting in an active, transparent and efficient capital market that enhances capital formation, crucial to the nation’s economy (Rosenbaum & Joshua, 2009). CFTC, on the other hand, is charged with the responsibility of regulating commodity futures trading, as well as options contracts in the U.S and takes legal action against entities that are suspected of fraudulently or illegally selling options or commodity futures (Rosenbaum & Joshua, 2009).
Elements of a Valid Contract and the Duty of Good Faith in the banking relationship
Needless to say, the actions of JPMorgan were a violation of the contract that existed between the bank and the consumers. There are varied components that make up a valid contract. First, an offer has to be made by one party. This underlines a definite promise for the party to be bound as long as the offer’s terms are accepted by another party. Secondly, there is the element of acceptance where the offer is unequivocally accepted by another party by act or statement. The third element of a contract is a consideration where the other party would essentially be giving something in return for the promise. In addition, the parties must be intending to enter into an agreement that is legally binding. The fifth element revolves around the legal capacity of the individuals involved in the contract (McKendrick, 2012). It is worth noting that individuals who are mentally impaired, minors, prisoners, or bankrupts are considered not to have the capacity to enter into agreements that are legally binding. In addition, the parties must have entered the contract by their own free will and in proper understanding of the terms and the actions of the other party (Fleuriet, 2008). Lastly, the contract must incorporate certainty with the regulations and terms of the contract being clearly stated and comprehended by the parties in the contract.
While all the elements may have been satisfied in the contract between JPMorgan Chase and its customers, the actions of the bank were in breach of the implied covenant of fair dealing and good faith. This is where the parties to the contract are presumed to deal fairly, honestly and in good faith with each other in order to prevent the destruction of the other party’s rights to receive the contract’s benefits (McKendrick, 2012). This is aimed at reinforcing the express promises or covenants pertaining to the contract. JPMorgan Chase did not act fairly and honestly in its presentation of financial information, as well as in the investment decisions that it made, which resulted in the massive losses to the consumers.
Intentional and Negligent Tort Actions
Torts are civil wrongs that unfairly cause an individual to suffer harm or loss resulting in legal liability for the individual that undertakes the tortuous act. Two tort actions namely intentional and negligent tort actions are identified. Intentional torts revolve around the purposeful act aimed at causing harm to an individual, while negligent tort actions revolve around the failure to take actions to rectify problems that would harm an individual. Negligence is characterized by varied elements including duty of care, breach of the duty, and proximate cause, as well as harm. An individual or entity would have to owe the other party a duty of care, which they then breach. There must be a proximate cause where the negligence of the entity was the actual cause of the injuries or harm to the other party (Rosenbaum & Joshua, 2009). The main distinction between intentional and negligent tort actions is that negligent tort actions do not incorporate a purpose to cause harm, rather are caused when an individual (entity) fails to undertake reasonable care thereby resulting in harm to another individual (Rosenbaum & Joshua, 2009). However, in both cases, the actions of the entity resulted in the harm or injury of an individual, in which case the entity would be legally liable for the harm.
Tort Action for “Interference with Contractual Relations and Participating in a Breach of Fiduciary duty”
As stated earlier, the directors or senior executives of JPMorgan Chase bank violated the contractual relations and the fiduciary obligations to their customers. Fiduciary duties necessitate that the actions of the fiduciary be solely in the principals’ best interests, free from conflict of interests, self dealing and other abuse of the principal for an individual’s personal advantage (Rosenbaum & Joshua, 2009). In essence, corporate directors, employees and executives are barred from making use of corporate assets and property for their personal advantage or even using corporate opportunities for themselves (McKendrick, 2012). Fiduciary duties refer to obligations to act in another party’s best interests, and exists where the relationships with clients revolve around special trust, reliance and confidence on the fiduciary to be discrete and use his expertise when action on behalf of the client. Proving breach of fiduciary duty in the case of JPMorgan comes as extremely easy especially considering that the claimant would need to prove two things. First, the claimant would need to show that the defendants were in a position of fiduciary relationship, trust or confidence, which they breached so as to benefit personally (McKendrick, 2012). The United States Code, Title 29, Chapter 18, Subchapter I, Subtitle B Part 4, No. 1109 states that any fiduciary any of the duties, responsibilities and obligations accruing to the fiduciary would be personally liable for any losses that result from each of the breaches and would be required to restore any profits pertaining to such fiduciary, which have been made via the usage of the assets pertaining to the plan by the fiduciary (Rosenbaum & Joshua, 2009). JPMorgan directors did not undertake proper monitoring and supervision of the sufficiency of the bank’s internal controls, in which case they allowed for the issuing of misleading filings and statements. On the same note, JPMorgan directors obtained unjust enrichment through the acceptance of director remuneration and compensation while breaching the fiduciary duties pertaining to JPMorgan. On the same note, a May 10 2012 filling by SEC shows that JPMorgan’s CIO had considerable market-to-market losses in the synthetic credit portfolio, which proved to be more volatile, less effective and riskier as an economic hedge than previously believed. Moreover, the losses emanated from gambles or ventures gone wrong in the CIO of the bank and revolved around losses in derivative positions. In essence, JPMorgan’s directors would be liable.
Mobile Banking: Protecting Automation Software
Mobile banking has been taken up by numerous banks and individuals all over the world. This may primarily be as a result of the convenience that it offers consumers (SCN Education, 2001). Testament to its popularity is the fact that about a fifth of Americans were accessing their financial information via their mobile phones, with the figure rising to a third of the mobile phone users by 2013. However, this new invention has also introduced another risk especially to the consumers and the banks. Research showed that, in 2011, Smartphone owners had a third higher likelihood of being victims of identity fraud. Scholars noted, however, that these wounds were self-afflicted as the Smartphone users had outdated software, stored their passwords on their mobile devices as plain text, and did not use home screen passwords (SCN Education, 2001). On the same note, banks stand a high chance of having the software that allows for automation hacked, which could lead to immense losses (SCN Education, 2001). Nevertheless, banks have undertaken measures at different levels to protect the software. At the level of the back end, there is the risk-based authentication, as well as anomaly detection that scrutinize requests for unexpected or unusual activity (Karim, 2011). The detection of any anomaly would result in shutdown of the system or the operation. In addition, they incorporate out-of-band authentication that depends on separate devices and not just the Smartphone for the operation to be cleared (Karim, 2011). On the same note, while the software may incorporate encryption, passwords and other security features for its protection, banks complement their security through the installation of anti-spamware alongside encryption of hardware operations (Karim, 2011). Computer VIRUS (vital information retrieval under siege) is usually crafted to impend the operations of software. In essence, keeping the computer antivirus software updated prevents the attacks on vital operations of software and prevents hacking (Karim, 2011).
Fleuriet, M. (2008). Investment banking explained: An insider’s guide to the industry. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Rosenbaum, J & Joshua, P (2009). Investment banking valuation, leveraged buyouts, and mergers & acquisitions. Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons.
Karim, Z (2011). Online Banking: Securing the Information. New York: LAP Lambert Acad. Publ
SCN Education B.V. (2001). Electronic banking: The ultimate guide to business and technology of online banking. Braunscweig: Vieweg.
McKendrick, E. (2012). Contract law: Text, cases, and materials. Oxford, U.K: Oxford University Press.
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