International Journal of Management, Knowledge and Learning 2023-07-28T15:48:10+00:00 Valerij Dermol Open Journal Systems <p>The International Journal of Management, Knowledge and Learning (IJMKL) aims to bring together researchers and practitioners in business, education and other sectors to provide advanced knowledge in the areas of <strong>management</strong>, knowing and <strong>learning in organisations</strong>, <strong>education</strong>, <strong>business</strong>, <strong>social science</strong>, <strong>entrepreneurship</strong>, and <strong>innovation</strong> in businesses, and others.</p> <p>The journal encourages the <strong>exchange of academic research</strong> and provides all those involved in research and practice with new research findings, case examples and discussions. It brings new ideas and offers practical case studies to researchers, practitioners, consultants, and especially <strong>young researchers and doctoral students</strong> worldwide.</p> Peer Instruction as Teaching Method in Cybersecurity and Data Privacy 2022-12-15T16:52:36+00:00 Bettina Scheider Petra Maria Asprion <p><strong>Purpose/background:</strong> Cybersecurity and data privacy are important fields today. Basic education in these two interconnected areas should already be offered in schools, as practically everyone today can encounter the dangers and risks of the Internet regarding data theft, data manipulation or the like. However, cybersecurity and data privacy are generally abstract, and many people are not interested in such technical topics. <br /><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> To arouse interest and provide a certain basic education, we used ‘peer instruction’ combined with storytelling as a promising method to teach cybersecurity and data privacy. Within the framework of an EU project called GEIGER and with the support of students who have learned data privacy using the presented method, our specific peer instruction approach has been further developed, applied, tested, reflected, and iteratively improved. <br /><strong>Findings:</strong> The study shows that peer instruction in combination with storytelling is useful as teaching method in cybersecurity and data privacy. Especially the concept test questions encourage learners to engage with specific real-world situations. The study however revealed limitations of peer instruction in transforming facts into experiences. <br /><strong>Originality/value:</strong> In summary, the results presented are useful for cybersecurity and data privacy teaching, but the recommendations must be considered concerning careful preparation and testing.</p> 2023-01-18T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Bettina Scheider, Petra Maria Asprion The Impact of Organizational Culture on the Opportunities and Threats in Digital Transformation 2023-02-18T07:19:37+00:00 Bálint Jakab Nikoletta Kaszás Ildikó Ernszt <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> The aim of the research is to show how the individual elements of the organizational culture - learning organization - affect the opportunities and threats related to the introduction of Industry 4.0.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> A structured questionnaire was used to survey Hungarian companies. The online questionnaire with closed and measurable scale questions were created and distributed. Questions covered following: perceived and detected threats that may hinder organizations in the digital transition process, the benefits that businesses see as an opportunity in the digital transformation, by examining the most important variables of learning organizations and the opportunities and dangers of digital transformation. As a result, survey received a positive feedback with 639 fully completing the questionnaire. Measurement was performed using IBM SPSS Statistics (Version 22.) In the first stage of the research, an Opportunities and a Threats factor were created using principal component analysis. As a result, instead of seven and twelve variables, one can be used to examine additional relationships. In the next stage of the research, we examined how each element of the organizational culture (Organizational Culture - Learning Organization) affects the factors we created, what percentage they contribute to the formation of each factor. The measurement was performed by linear regression analysis.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> A comparison of two queries was performed, the results of which are summarized below. (A) How do certain elements of the organizational culture affect companies’ the Industry 4.0 Opportunities? (B) How do certain elements of the organizational culture affect companies’ Industry 4.0 Threats? In „A” case, the organizational culture factors explain 15.1% (R Square = .151) of the companies' Opportunity Factor. After the 5<sup>th</sup> modeling of the program, there are 5 Organizational Culture variables that significantly contribute to the Opportunities of companies. In „B” case, the Organizational Culture factors explain only 5.6% (R Square = .056) of the companies’ Threats Factor. Following the 7th modeling of the program, there are 3 Organizational Culture variables that contribute significantly to the Threats of companies,</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> The five Organizational Culture variables that significantly contribute to the Opportunities of companies are: The organization proactively anticipates change, The organization is looking for innovative, new solutions, not limited by the habit, The organization also focuses on long-term impacts when making decisions, In the operation and development of the organization, the effects of the changes on other organizational units are taken into account and, The aim is to jointly develop the learning and development skills of the members of the organization, group learning. The three Organizational Culture variables that contribute significantly to the Threats of companies are: The organization is open to environmental change, The aim is to jointly develop the learning and development skills of the members of the organization, Employees can act to achieve their personal vision, ie. free self-realization.</p> 2023-02-22T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Bálint Jakab, Nikoletta Kaszás, Ildikó Ernszt Communities of Practice as a Knowledge Management Tool in Ghana's Telecommunication Industry: A Systematic Review 2023-01-10T19:17:10+00:00 Lawrence Akosen Nasir Asiedu <p>Purpose/Background: Communities of Practice (CoPs) have emerged as a crucial mechanism for facilitating knowledge transfer within Ghana's telecom industry. Their significance lies in their role as a catalyst that empowers the telecommunications sector, which holds a central position on the developmental agendas of various African nations. The CoPs concept is instrumental in enhancing the competitive advantage of the industry and fostering innovation.<br />Study Design/Methodology/Approach: The study employs a systematic review methodology to comprehensively analyse the literature on Communities of Practice in the telecom industry context. This approach ensures a thorough examination of the subject matter and enables the presentation of well-informed conclusions. The research process involves meticulously examining relevant sources, followed by in-depth discussions and analysis of the findings.<br />Findings: The study's findings shed light on the substantial impact of Communities of Practice on the telecom industry. These CoPs have proven to be a powerful tool for strengthening various crucial competencies within the sector. By acting as conduits for disseminating information across a diverse spectrum of technical and operational domains within an organization, CoPs contribute significantly to enhancing the industry's collective skill set.<br />Originality/Value: The originality and value of this study lie in its comprehensive exploration of the role of Communities of Practice in Ghana's telecom industry. By employing a systematic review technique, the study not only presents a thorough overview of the existing body of knowledge but also offers novel insights into the dynamics of knowledge transfer within the industry. The study's findings and conclusions are of immense value to practitioners and researchers seeking to understand the intricate interplay between CoPs and the telecom sector's competitive advantage.</p> 2023-02-22T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Lawrence Akosen, Nasir Asiedu Mechanism of Transformational Leadership on Team Performance and Recommended Interventions on AI-Lab 2023-01-10T19:16:38+00:00 Zhuofeng Li <p><strong>Purpose</strong><strong>: </strong>The purpose of this study is to synthesize the relationships between transformational leadership and the intermediate outcomes (e.g., team vision, team coordination, team cohesion, team project innovation) of team performance, then to propose relevant interventions to enhance the team performance of the case setting.</p> <p><strong>Study design: </strong>Based on the empirical literature review, this study employs the case study method to incorporate relevant transformational behaviors and techniques into the practical issues of the case setting.</p> <p><strong>Findings: </strong>This study demonstrates the positive relationships between the 4I’s of transformational leadership and the intermediate outcomes of team performance, and finds some unique transformational techniques to cope with the managerial problems during business transition.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> This study contributes to formulating an original theoretical framework on transformational leadership and team performance, and employing a series of exclusive intervention measures to improve the team performance of the case setting. The contributions may generalize into the wider education service sector.</p> 2023-02-22T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Zhuofeng Li An Examination of Factors Determining User Privacy Perceptions of Voice-Based Assistants 2023-02-14T04:41:34+00:00 Biodun Awojobi Brett Landry <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> Voice-based assistants have become ubiquitous in our homes and all around us. We interact with voice-based assistants through smartphones, dedicated home devices, or other Internet-connected devices. The proliferation of these devices in our lives makes us question whether the data transmitted through these devices are secure and the role perception of privacy the users of these devices have in the usage of the device. This paper focuses on the user privacy issues specific to two voice-based assistants – Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant using quantitative and qualitative methods. The paper will answer three research questions regarding user privacy perceptions and how a user’s technology adoption, smartphone operating system, and demographics influence their perception of privacy.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> This is a mixed research study where survey data was collected from faculty, staff, and students of a large University in the United States and professional connections globally.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> Privacy perceptions vary based on user age, educational level, gender, smartphone adoption, and technical awareness and expertise.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> This study is unique in highlighting the perception of privacy for voice-based assistants and assigning a numerical value based on survey data to the concern. Another feature of the study is its correlation of privacy perception with mobile phone operating systems and the level of technical expertise of voice-based assistant users.</p> 2023-02-22T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Biodun Awojobi, Brett Landry (How) Can Machine Learning Support Teaching Staff in a Virtual Collaborative Learning Environment? 2023-02-27T13:27:25+00:00 Arne Böhmer Maximilian Musch Hannes Schubert Sebastian Schmidt <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="IT">Purpose:</span></strong><span lang="IT"> Supervising roles within virtual collaborative learning (VCL) environments face many different challenges and are often having difficulties keeping an eye on everything and comprehending every participant’s or group’s workflow. To help supervisors with problems like that we developed a software prototype to support their daily workflow and overcome the mentioned challenges.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="IT">Study design/methodology/approach:</span></strong><span lang="IT"> This study used a design science research approach to investigate how learning analytics might be able to support teaching staff in VCL settings. Previous studies demonstrated that this approach is very well suited to derive design guidelines for such software artifacts. Initially, a qualitative interview series with four experienced tutors was carried out to get an in-depth understanding of the challenges and tasks teaching staff typically faces in VCL environments. The interview material was systematically analysed to acquire the underlying software requirements. These were then combined with existing knowledge about support software of similar use cases to create a first prototype, primarily based on a supervised machine learning model that classifies online messages sent within the teams.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="IT">Findings:</span></strong><span lang="IT"> The software tool we have developed has shown that machine learning processes can indeed be used to support teaching staff in VCL environments. The tool achieves satisfactory classification performance in categorizing chat messages. It could therefore be demonstrated that it is possible to classify chat messages using a software tool. The interviews conducted revealed a particular interest in the statistical evaluations of group activities in Microsoft Teams. This was said to save a lot of time in the subsequent evaluation of the groups. The interviewed eTutors also expressed an interest in receiving private information on the development of possible conflicts within groups. The interest of the interviewed supervisors was very high and additional interviews could lead to further possible feature ideas. In general, the evaluative interviews resulted in positive feedback regarding how our prototype supported eTutors during their work.</span></p> </div> <div><strong><span lang="IT">Originality/value:</span></strong></div> <div><span lang="IT"> In current times, spatially distributed and asynchronous education plays a bigger role than ever before. VCL environments are useful tools to overcome these challenges of time and space. However, unlike research on conversational agents or automated feedback systems, the focus of this work is not on the communication interface between software and users or the exclusively quantitative analysis of messages. The goal is to evaluate the content of sent messages within VCL environments using the six defined categories to gain a better qualitative understanding of the teams’ collaboration and its workflow.</span></div> 2023-04-05T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Arne Böhmer, Maximilian Musch, Hannes Schubert, Sebastian Schmidt Aligning the Sharp End and The Blunt End in Construction Projects: Planning for Safety as Case 2023-03-29T06:20:44+00:00 Trygve J. Steiro Lindsay Wagstaff Marit Vala Eirik Albrechtsen <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> The construction industry is one of the most hazardous work sectors in Norway according to Statistics Norway. The purpose of this study was to study planning at various levels of construction projects, including planning of lifting operations, to assess how safety can be optimised.</p> <p><strong>Methodology: </strong>This qualitative interview study was based on a thorough review of safety literature. Fifteen interviews were conducted with workers in the sharp and blunt end, i.e., close to, or removed from, hazard sources on construction projects. The participants in this study were skilled workers, construction supervisors, and managers.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> The current study found that proactive planning is crucial for safety. The current study also investigated the cruial role of project management as an important factor for safety. It was also identified that project management is a key in setting and maitaining safety in construct projects. However, this is dependent on communication and co- operation and alignment of the sharp end and the blunt end in projects.</p> <p><strong>Originality:</strong> The current study goes into deep in construction projects and demonstrating the importance of close link between planning and execution and identifies prerequistes for good social interaction and thereby taking care of the safety.</p> 2023-06-02T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Trygve J. Steiro, Lindsay Wagstaff, Marit Vala, Eirik Albrechtsen Budget Credibility and Global Surprises in Ghana: A Critical Reflection through PEFA Framework 2023-01-10T19:15:57+00:00 Joseph Forson <p><strong>Purpose </strong>- Public financial management practices in emerging economies have evolved overtime with the aim of improving national budget systems and promoting sustainable development. Therefore, the integration of the Ghanaian economy into the global one does not in any way immune it from shocks brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic and the Russian-Ukraine war. The approach in this paper is to document my thoughts and opinion on Ghana’s public financial management practices in the context of global surprises.</p> <p><strong>Design/methodology/approach</strong> - The PEFA framework is used to assess the budget credibility of Ghana.</p> <p><strong>Findings</strong> – The findings shows that although a lot has been done to sanitise the public space in budgetary management, there is glowing evidence that suggest the public purse is riddled with systemic culture of corruption and mismanagement.</p> <p><strong>Originality/Value</strong> – Most developing economies have very good blue-prints on how to manage resources, but when it comes to actualising the imports of these blue-prints, there is a challenge. Ghana’s experience is commendable and worth being brought to the fore for all economies in the African region and beyond to emulate.</p> 2023-06-02T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Joseph Forson Towards Smart Mobility from the Perspective of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Polish Experiences on the Example of Warsaw 2023-05-13T17:02:37+00:00 Krzysztof Łabędzki Agnieszka Bitkowska <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> The article aims to bring the concept of smart mobility closer in the context of implementing the passenger transport process - public during the Covid-19 pandemic in the Warsaw metropolis in Poland.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> Analyzes of the process implementation were presented, along with the prospect of moving towards smart mobility. It used the literature review and case study method to present a picture of the metropolis of Warsaw. They carry out a ranking comparison of cities in the IESE City Motion Index for 2020 and 2022 in the smart mobility sub-area.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> The cities and agglomerations of the future, especially in Poland, will strive to become more intelligent by building a complex structure of interdependent physical and virtual networks and digital platforms based on technological solutions. This will also be reflected in implementing the smart mobility idea and transport processes. Creating effective and efficient urban transport should consequently increase the quality and comfort of travelling. Warsaw metropolis can be a case for other cities in Central Europe.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> This work presents how to transform smart mobility in a smart city context. The article's value was to show how, through the prism of the COVID-19 pandemic, Warsaw dealt with the phenomenon and how it influenced its further pursuit of the smart city. The research results presented in the article also concern the sphere of public transport and passenger transport processes through the quality and comfort of travelling.</p> 2023-07-20T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Krzysztof Łabędzki, Agnieszka Bitkowska Linking Business Ecosystems and Transaction Cost Theory: Between Market and Hierarchy and the Role of Power 2023-05-24T12:22:34+00:00 Claude Meier Urs Jäckli <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> Business ecosystems substitute more and more the idea of linear value chains as a conceptual idea of economic value creation. There are two conditions to make sense to establish an ecosystem. Firstly, complementarity: the complements of the actors have to be compatible with each other. Secondly, there must be a need for coordination between the economic actors. This is given if the complements have a certain minimum degree of specificity, i.e. if they aren’t generic. Specificity provides the link to the transaction cost theory, which knows two extreme forms of coordination: market and hierarchy. In this article we argue why ecosystems are to be placed between the two. Moreover, we consider dominance in ecosystems and the transition to oligopolistic situations. Oligopolies hamper the functioning of ecosystems. The purpose of this article is to provide a clear conceptual view on ecosystems by linking different theories.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> The study design is conceptual. By linking conceptual considerations about business ecosystems to transaction cost theory their basic analytical categories can be elaborated and considered more focussed. The conceptual clarification leads to new and deeper questions.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> A main finding is the quite clear elaboration of complementarity and the need for coordination as the basic preconditions for business ecosystems to make sense as a form for creating economic value. Moreover, it was shown that oligopolies can hamper the advantages and the function of ecosystems.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> The main value is the provision of a clear and overall precise view on ecosystems. The originality lies in clearly showing the basic analytical categories. This provides a clear picture of the basic structure of ecosystems.</p> 2023-07-20T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Claude Meier, Urs Jäckli The Impact of Web 2.0 on the Website Use of Small Italian Hotels 2023-06-08T14:38:11+00:00 Fabrizio Gritta <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> The digital revolution is causing profound transformations, characterised by how companies and customers approach the market, helping to significantly transform the tourism sector. Traditionally, the Internet was used to search for timetables, find information and compare prices, or book basic tourist products. Today, thanks to Web 2.0, people can create their own trips by following the advice and examples of other users on the Net who have shared the contents of their tour and expressed opinions on their own travel experience. The study aims to investigate how small accommodation enterprises use their website for marketing following the development of Web 2.0, which differs from the initial concept of the Internet because it departs from the classic static websites.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> After the analysis of the literature, which relates to the relationship that has gradually developed over the years between small businesses in the tourism sector and the use of the Internet for marketing purposes, it was decided to carry out an empirical survey on a sample of websites of small Italian hotels. The research hypothesis is that website adoption is conditioned by the marketing communication of the tourist experience that favours interactive tools. Sixty websites of micro-enterprises with less than thirty rooms were analysed, revealing an important use of social media for marketing communication.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> The research results show that small hotel enterprises present a limited use of the website, limited to the web presence, while the customer relationship is managed through social networks.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> This work is believed to provide useful ideas for starting a more substantial study activity in the field of small accommodation to understand the reasons behind the low use of the website.</p> 2023-07-30T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Fabrizio Gritta Students’ Attitudes toward Immigrants: An Analysis of ICCS Data 2023-06-20T23:15:12+00:00 Špela Javornik <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> This study investigates changes in students’ attitudes toward immigrants among 14-year-old students in Slovenia, between the International Civic and Citizenship Education Study (ICCS) cycles of 2009 and 2016. Additionally, it explores the relationship between civic knowledge and attitudes toward immigrants.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> The study performed descriptive statistics and further linear regression analysis to investigate the relationship between civic knowledge and students’ attitudes toward immigrants.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> The results show that attitudes toward immigrants have become slightly more positive between the two cycles in Slovenia, but the differences are not statistically significant. Civic knowledge is positively related to attitudes toward immigrants in both cycles. These findings are consistent with previous studies, highlighting the importance of education in promoting positive attitudes toward immigrants and the need for continuous evaluation of educational policies and practices to improve attitudes toward immigrants in Slovenia and beyond.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> The originality and value of this study lie in its focus on Slovenian students' attitudes toward immigrants and their relationship with civic knowledge, by analyzing data from two ICCS cycles.</p> <p> </p> 2023-07-30T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Špela Javornik Motivation on Employee Performance through Top Leadership Commitment 2023-07-26T08:57:42+00:00 Morgan Kaunda Tryson Yangailo <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> This research study examined the fit of top leadership commitment in mediating the relationship between employee motivation and employee performance in the railway sector. The study attempted to fill the gap in the literature by providing more insight into the nature of the relationship between employee motivation and performance.<br /><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> The study adopted a quantitative research approach with sample data collected from 337 TAZARA employees. Validity, reliability and model fit were tested using factor analysis, principal component analysis and regression analysis in Jamovi software.<br /><strong>Findings:</strong> The results show a significant positive relationship between employee motivation and employee performance and between top leadership commitment and employee performance. Top leadership commitment was found to fully mediate the relationship between employee motivation and employee performance.<br /><strong>Originality/value:</strong> This was the first study to empirically test the mediating effect of top leadership commitment on employee motivation and performance in the railway sector. The research findings may help decision-makers in the railway industry to be committed to motivating employees to promote high performance in their organisations. Researchers are also strongly encouraged to replicate this research in other sectors and are advised to include other contingency variables as moderating variables.</p> 2023-09-14T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Morgan Kaunda, Tryson Yangailo Emergence of Wisdom Research in Higher Education during 1988–2022 2023-07-26T09:03:34+00:00 Maria Jakubik <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> This paper focuses on exploring the emerging trends and themes of wisdom research in higher education during the 1988-2022 period.<br /><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> Wisdom publications (<em>n=523</em>) found in the Web of Science database were quantitatively analysed. For mapping the emerging research themes and trends we applied Bibliometric Analysis (i.e., citation, co-citation, bibliographic coupling, co-word, and co-authorship analyses). VOSviewer software was used for analysis and visualization.<br /><strong>Findings:</strong> Findings indicated an exponential growth in wisdom publications that could provide opportunities for educational researchers for many years ahead. The main emerging themes were: pedagogy, teaching, students, intelligence, character, ethics, wisdom, local wisdom, phronesis, practical wisdom, spirituality, empathy, inequality, mindfulness, sustainability, and human capital.<br /><strong>Originality/value:</strong> This study uses science mapping technique of Bibliometric Analysis that is still a very new method in educational research.</p> 2023-09-14T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Maria Jakubik Applicability of the Studio Pedagogy for the Preparation of a Future Workforce 2023-07-28T15:48:10+00:00 Kari-Pekka Heikkinen Kongkiti Phusavat Praneeth Peumal Galhena <p><strong>Purpose</strong>: The study identifies the key takeaways which characterizes the importance of learning environment at the university for future workplace. The term work today involves both performing tasks and actively learning on and about these tasks. Thus, learning is essential for a new workplace.<br /><strong>Study design/methodology/approach</strong>: The study examines the impacts from having implemented the studio pedagogy known as the LAB Studio Model (LSM) during 2014-2018. This model was implemented through the Oamk LABs educational program at Oulu University of Applied Sciences in Finland. In addition to the immediate (from repeated observations), the enduring effects (after 5 years) from informal sessions are gathered.<br /><strong>Findings</strong>: Altogether, the study identified 12 key takeaways that contribute positively to learning and motivation to learn. These key takeaways are important for the preparation of a future workforce.<br /><strong>Originality/value</strong>: The LSM appears to help prepare the university graduates for Industry 4.0 challenges and opportunities.</p> 2023-09-14T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Kari-Pekka Heikkinen, Kongkiti Phusavat, Praneeth Peumal Galhena Online Collaborative Learning in Higher Education in Albania: Some Necessary Innovations 2023-01-16T08:30:09+00:00 Eriola Qafzezi <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> The purpose of the current paper is to discuss the necessity for the internationalisation of Albanian HEIs, in light of the recent changes that HEIs in Albania are undergoing. Online collaborative learning is thus introduced as a necessary innovation to be embraced in HE in Albania, illustrated by implementation and findings and comments based on an authentic case study undertaken in the third course, Bachelor level, Fan S. Noli University, Korça, Albania. </p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> The paper is supported by a theoretical background on online collaborative learning and factual data about the current state of HEIs in Albania. The latter factual information illustrates the necessity of embracing online learning practices through collaborative learning, supported by examples from the case study. The paper adopts a mixed method approach, combining qualitative analysis with quantitative data derived from surveys carried out with Albanian students.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> There are some conclusions and findings that we have derived from the factual information presented about the current state of HEIs in Albania, combined with data extracted from the case study. They point to the necessary innovations involving Albanian teachers and students of HEIs in online collaborative learning. </p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> The current study bears original value because it provides direct links between the current need for the internationalisation of HEIs in Albania and online collaborative learning as a concrete way to bring about internationalisation. Examples brought are also authentic, taken from the case study, supported by data from pre- and post-implementation surveys conducted with Albanian students who took part in the case study.</p> 2023-02-22T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Eriola Qafzezi Lessons Learned from an International and Interdisciplinary Virtual Mobility Module between Albania, Slovenia, and Germany 2023-02-27T13:04:01+00:00 Mattis Altmann Nelli Ukhova Laura Hilse <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="EN-GB">Purpose:</span></strong><span lang="EN-GB"> After piloting an international and interdisciplinary Virtual Mobility module with eight participating institutions, the experiences will be processed as pedagogical patterns in OER format to facilitate future implementation.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="EN-US">Study design/methodology/approach:</span></strong><span lang="EN-US"> The lessons learned from the executing institution's perspective will be presented from the perspective of the module supervisor as well as two experienced e-tutors who were involved in the design, implementation and evaluation and were generated through their reflections of them. </span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="IT">Findings:</span></strong><span lang="IT"> The lessons learned focus on improving the organization of international e-tutor teams, the dropout management in group work with several institutions, and adapting the e-tutor qualification to enable adequate and qualitative equal support of all participants.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="IT">Originality/value:</span></strong><span lang="IT"> Based on the findings of the Albanian needs report, Virtual Mobility modules have been implemented marginally in the Albanian HEI landscape so far. Thus, the experiences from the pilot are of particular importance for the further multiplication and improvement of the internationalization of Albanian HEIs.</span></p> </div> 2023-03-25T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Mattis Altmann, Nelli Ukhova, Laura Hilse Challenges of University-Industry Cooperation in Albania 2023-02-27T12:47:05+00:00 Ermira Qosja Ketrina Mijo Çabiri <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> Albanian universities have a rigid experience especially when it comes to their effort to become competitive and respond to market demands. Today, it is a necessity for Albanian universities to become dynamic academic units, to go on an entrepreneurial path and to affect innovation in the region. This paper aims to measure the perception of university management staff regarding the challenges and barriers that appear in university-industry cooperation. It shed light to the identification of factors that motivate the academic staff toward such cooperation</p> <p><strong>&nbsp;</strong><strong>Study design/methodology/approach: </strong>This paper implies a qualitative based methodology and relies on the methods used by the ERASMUS + CBHE ‘KALCEA’ project. Questionnaires used on KALCEA Project collect data from universities, businesses and research centres. The questionnaires pose a set of standard questions as well as a set of tailored questions for each of the three categories. The questionnaire was completed by the high management staff of universities in the period June-July 2022. From 39 universities and higher education colleges established in Albania, the questionnaire was sent to 22 institutions and were received answers from 16. Respondents are positions of rector/vice-rector/dean.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> One of the great challenges of the current high education system is to demonstrate capacity in adapting itself to the societal changes and its new emerging economic demands. Nowadays, in higher education institutions in Albania, the biggest challenges are internationalization, connection with industry, commercialization of knowledge and academic entrepreneurship.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> Findings of the paper have interest for universities, industry, and politicians in Albania. They go in line and add value to the new Albanian law on HEIs (2015) which provides more authonomy to Departments and poses challange for them to cooperate with industry and act entreprenerially</p> 2023-03-25T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Ermira Qosja, Ketrina Mijo Çabiri Assessing Virtual Collaborative Learning (VCL) as an Innovative Teaching and Learning Approach: A Case Application in Albania 2023-02-27T14:10:06+00:00 Esmir Demaj Griselda Alushllari <p><strong>Purpose:</strong> The purpose of this research is to assess the implementation of a Virtual Collaborative Learning model (VCL) applied at a university level course/module with students of the bachelor cycle in a HEI in Albania.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> A single descriptive case study design has been used. At the end of the pilot VCL-based course activity deployment, an open-ended survey was conducted, and the response transcripts were analysed and elaborated. Course instructor and E-tutor first-hand observation has been also utilized.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> Data obtained from the survey shows that the implementation of the VCL model alongside its challenges, is generally well-acknowledged and considered a positive experience. The majority of respondents, 93% of the students who participated in the survey highly recommend VCL as a new approach in learning. Communication issues are noticed particularly at first when students are trying to get accustomed to this model.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value:</strong> The expected novelty of this pilot project was the development of the teaching and learning processes through alternative innovative approaches such as through virtual collaborative learning.</p> 2023-03-25T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Esmir Demaj, Griselda Alushllari Competence Needs of Modern Virtual Community Members 2023-02-27T12:51:18+00:00 Lisa-Marie Langesee Tom Helleken Nils Hobe <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="EN-US">Purpose:</span></strong><span lang="EN-US"> This paper examines necessary competencies in virtual communities in Higher Education. Therefore, we explore which competencies are needed to participate in a virtual community and how these competencies can be captured and developed.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="EN-US">Study design/methodology/approach:</span></strong><span lang="EN-US"> A systematic literature review (SLR) was conducted to achieve the research objectives.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="EN-US">Findings:</span></strong><span lang="EN-US"> As a result, five core competencies were identified: digital competencies, (inter)cultural competencies and language, social and communication competencies, self-motivation and self-management, and collaboration. Consequently, a self-assessment test for virtual community members was designed to capture existing competencies.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="EN-US">Originality/value:</span></strong><span lang="EN-US"> The Covid-19 pandemic as a driver of digitization has led to virtual collaboration being more prevalent than ever. This research paper contributes to the topic of virtual collaboration by informing about the necessary competencies and by developing an intuitive tool for self-assessing. Thus, preparing team members to become more successful in virtual teamwork.</span></p> </div> 2023-03-25T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Lisa-Marie Langesee, Tom Helleken, Nils Hobe Students’ English Language Development through the International VCL Module of the ValeuX project 2023-03-29T06:04:34+00:00 Dorela Kaçauni <p><strong>Purpose: </strong>The purpose of this study is to investigate the development of students' English language in terms of speaking, pronunciation and vocabulary while their participation in the “<em>International Virtual Collaborative Learning</em>” (IVCL) Module under the framework of the Erasmus+ programme European Union funded Project: <em>ValeuX: Virtual Albanian European Universities Exchange</em>. Students from 8 Albanian and European universities participated in the <em>ValeuX</em> incubator for 6 weeks. They had to work on a business start-up concerning eco-tourism in Albania. During these weeks, students had to talk in English and schedule meetings to discuss the tasks they had to prepare. During this experience, they developed their English language skills.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach: </strong>The methodology of this paper is focused on a questionnaire distributed to 43 students via Google Forms to gather the data concerning the impact that students had after joining the "International VCL" Module and their development of different aspects of the English Language. </p> <p><strong>Findings: </strong>The findings showed that the student's English language development was noticeable. They perceived natural communication in English and expanded their vocabulary as well.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value: </strong>This study is important because it brings into light an aspect of taking part in International Virtual Learning, which is the development of English Language skills. It was a Foreign Language for all the students, and they worked on designing a start-up business idea about eco-tourism in Albania.</p> 2023-06-02T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Dorela Kaçauni Implementation of Virtual Mobility and Internationalization at Home in Albania’s Higher Education: A Catalogue of Recommendations for Action 2023-02-27T12:59:55+00:00 Gotje Frieda Rubarth Lisa Aschenbrenner Maroua Salhi Mattis Altmann <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="EN-GB">Purpose:</span></strong><span lang="EN-GB"> Despite progressing research in the field of Virtual Mobility and Internationalization at Home, recent theories and technologies are challenging to implement for Higher Education Institutes (HEIs). The present paper focuses particularly on Albania, where the current education system has not been able to sufficiently incorporate Virtual Mobility and Internationalization in higher education programs. </span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="EN-US">Study design/methodology/approach:</span></strong> <span lang="EN-GB">This paper analyses the prevalent situation within Albania’s higher education system regarding Virtual Mobility and Internationalization at Home activities. The underlying data has been collected in qualitative semi-structured interviews, conducted with teaching staff and students from Albanian universities who are experienced with Virtual Mobility modules. It was evaluated through a mixed approach of qualitative content analysis by Mayring (2014) using inductive and deductive category formation.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="IT">Findings:</span></strong> <span lang="EN-GB">The results show the benefits that an increasing integration of Virtual Mobility activities in the education system could facilitate for students and teachers in Albania’s HEIs. Nevertheless, <a name="OLE_LINK2"></a>it became clear that in order to implement a higher degree of Virtual Mobility at university level, it is necessary to overcome the legal obstacles set by the Ministry of Education as well as structural obstacles within the HEIs.</span></p> </div> <div> <p class="Abstract"><strong><span lang="IT">Originality/value:</span></strong> <span lang="EN-GB">Due the actual lack of development, concepts, infrastructures, and legal foundations, the implementation of Virtual Mobility as an affordable instrument to foster the international experience of Albanian students is of high importance. This could raise the quality of academic education and tackle capacity gaps in the education system of Albania towards the grade of international experiences of students.</span></p> </div> 2023-06-02T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Gotje Frieda Rubarth, Lisa Aschenbrenner, Maroua Salhi, Mattis Altmann Internationalisation at Home through Virtual Collaborative Learning 2023-02-27T13:02:18+00:00 Dorsaf Ben Malek <p><strong>Purpose: </strong>This paper aims to give an overview of the challenges, mechanisms, and achievements of internationalisation at home through reporting the unfolding of two virtual exchanges across the Mediterranean.</p> <p><strong>Study design/methodology/approach:</strong> The research study was in three phases: course design, the implementation of the virtual exchanges and their evaluation through students’ questionnaires. The evaluation was twofold; quantitative through student questionnaires and qualitative through forums analysis and synchronous meetings observation.</p> <p><strong>Findings:</strong> Results were in line with the quasi-consensus over the efficiency of virtual mobility in improving students’ intercultural communicative competence, collaboration in virtual teams and English proficiency and hence supporting them in their internationalisation at home process.</p> <p><strong>Originality/value: </strong>The value of the current study lies in showing on a practical ground the viability of researching the benefits of virtual exchange, therefore adopting it as a strong strategy for internationalisation at home.</p> 2023-07-20T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Dorsaf Ben Malek