Performance improvement in complex organizations: the case of smallholder agricultural cooperatives in Malawi

Maganga, Dick Lucius (2017) Performance improvement in complex organizations: the case of smallholder agricultural cooperatives in Malawi. PhD thesis, University of Bolton.

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Abstract

Smallholder agricultural cooperatives have potential to play a vital role in the Malawi economy where smallholder farmers comprise the majority of the agricultural producers. Smallholder farmers individually have little power in the market place but when organized into cooperatives they enjoy protection from exploitation. The formation of cooperatives among smallholder farmers has therefore been accelerated and they now account for more than 55% of all cooperatives in Malawi. However, studies have concluded that the performance of the smallholder agricultural cooperatives is poor, and this research study has also confirmed this conclusion. This thesis therefore attempts to address the research problem: “How to improve the performance of smallholder agricultural cooperatives in Malawi”? The primary aim of this study was to develop a framework for improving the performance of smallholder agricultural cooperatives in Malawi. The research study utilized an interpretive paradigm to explore and describe the various factors that contribute to the poor performance of smallholder agricultural cooperatives. The multiple case study approach was used to gather data for this research study. A total of 8 case studies were conducted among smallholder agricultural cooperatives, and the empirical data that was collected was further analyzed using grounded theory analysis. The findings took the form of factors which contribute to the poor performance of smallholder agricultural cooperatives. A total of 18 factors were identified as contributing to poor performance of smallholder agricultural cooperatives. Thereafter, a performance improvement framework called the Maganga PISHAC Framework was developed by combining the identified factors into four core categories, namely; objectives, knowledge, skills and attitudes. The Maganga PISHAC Framework was constructed by integrating the findings of this study with the current literature in both the cooperative and performance improvement arenas. The Maganga PISHAC Framework can also be customized for use in other countries.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: Electronic version of the thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy awarded by University of Bolton in conjunction with Malawi Institute of Management
Divisions: University of Bolton Theses > Off-campus Division
Depositing User: Tracey Gill
Date Deposited: 06 Jul 2018 15:00
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2019 09:22
URI: http://ubir.bolton.ac.uk/id/eprint/1804

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