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The possible impact of university corruption on customers’ ethical standards Merlin Stone1 and Michael Starkey2
Correspondence: Merlin Stone, The Customer Framework, Lily Hill House, Lily Hill Road, Ascot RG12 2SJ, UK. E-mail:merlin.stone@thecustomerframework.com 1is Head of Research at The Customer Framework. He is author or co-author of many articles and 30 books on customer management. The UK's Chartered Institute of Marketing listed him in 2003 as one of the world's top 50 marketing thinkers, he was nominated as one of the 20 most influential people in the direct marketing industry in a Precision Marketing readership poll in 2003, while NOP World nominated him in 2004 as one of the 100 most influential individuals for their input and influence on the development and growth of e-commerce and the Internet in the United Kingdom over the previous 10 years. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and an Honorary Life Fellow of the UK's Institute of Direct Marketing. He is also on the editorial advisory boards of several academic journals. Parallel to his business career, he has also pursued a full academic career, holding senior posts at various universities. He started his career teaching economics at UMIST (now part of Manchester University), then moved to Kingston Polytechnic, also teaching economics. He then went into the engineering industry, before returning to Kingston to teach marketing and business strategy. Other significant academic posts included being a member of the senior staff at Henley Management College, Professor and then Dean at Kingston University (he was the Dean of Human Sciences, otherwise known as arts and social sciences when it became a university), and Professor at Surrey University and Bristol Business School. He is now a visiting professor at De Montfort, Portsmouth and Oxford Brookes Universities and an Associate Lecturer in Economics at the Open University. 2is a Principal Lecturer in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) at De Montfort University. Michael Starkey is one of the UK's top researchers and teachers in this highly specialized subject. He has recently published articles on customer data implications of social media, and other advanced topics in CRM. He is the co-author of three major reports on CRM with Merlin Stone and over 40 articles on CRM. He also has extensive practical experience, having worked in the food industry and precision engineering before joining De Montfort University. He has been engaged recently on an 18-month Knowledge Transfer Partnership programme project (For more on these partnerships, seehttp://www.ktponline.org.uk/, accessed 12 August 2011) helping an NGO move from relying almost entirely on government funding to becoming self-financing and customer focused. He is on the editorial review boards of this journal. He has also taught CRM for a number of years at the Cass Business School, and to Senior Police officers of Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk constabularies. He has now retired from most of his academic commitments and is focusing on commercial training and consulting projects in CRM. Received 15 August 2011; Revised 15 August 2011; Published online 19 September 2011. Topof page

Abstract
This article explores the rapidly rising incidence of corruption and fraud in universities, whether by students or staff. It asks whether companies are prepared for the extent to which their future customers or employees may have been socialised into unethical patterns of behaviour, and outlines an agenda for students to enable them to identify whether they are getting fair value for money and to determine how they should respond in situations where they are not. Keywords:

students; cheating; plagiarism; corruption; fraud; qualifications Topof page
INTRODUCTION
In this unconventional article, we explore a very difficult question – difficult for politicians, business people, students and their parents: If students face increasingly poor quality...
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