CHAPTER ONEINTRODUCTION1.1 Background to the StudyThestudy of attributes that form marketing image of government has been encouragedby the forces of globalization.
In the past, governments restrict themselves toparticular political systems and also aligned themselves to specific blocs. Asa result of globalization facilitated by technological advancement, countrieswho aligned to blocs have greatly transformed to track along the path ofcurrent world trends and order. In the light of this, governance of manycountries has taken different twists and transformed either into egalitarian ordemocratic regimes. Interestingly, within countries where multi-party systemsthrive there are different political leanings and ideologies. Some areleftists, rightistsCentre-leftpolitics, also referred to as leftists or moderate-left, is an adherence toviews leaning towards left-wing. Depending on the degree of inclination, someleftists can be closer to the centre on the left-right political spectrum thanother left-wing variants. According to Woshinsky (2008) centre-leftists presumein working within the established systems to advance social fairness.
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Thecentre-left supports a social equity level that it supposes is attainablethrough promoting equal opportunity (Woshinsky, 2008). The centre-left has advancedluck egalitarianism that lay emphasis on the equality achievement requires personal responsibility in areas incontrol by the individual person through their abilities and talents, as wellas social responsibility in areas outside control by the individual person intheir abilities or talents (Armstrong, 2006). Centre-left resists a wide gapbetween the affluent and the deprived and backs moderate measures to assuagethe economic gap, such as a progressive income tax, laws barring child labour,minimum wage laws, laws regulating working conditions, limits on working hoursand laws to ensure the workers’ right to organize. Unlike the far-left, thecentre-left typically claims that complete equity of outcome is not possible,but instead that equal opportunity improves a degree of equality of outcome insociety (Woshinsky, 2008). Generally, the centre-left incorporates socialdemocrats, social liberals, progressives, and democratic socialists.
Somesocial liberals are portrayed as centre-left, other than many social liberalsare in the centre of the political spectrum (Cioffi & Hopner, 2006; Ertel,Schlamp & Simon, 2009). Centre-right politics moreover isconsidered as moderate-right politics, are adherences that bend over to theright of the left-right political spectrum, except nearer to the centre thanother variants of right-wing. Notwithstanding the ideological leaning,right-wing politics hold that certain social orders and hierarchies are certain,natural, normal or desirable (Johnson, 2005), typically supporting thisposition on the basis of natural law, economics or tradition (Clark, 2003).
Centre-rightsgenerally support liberal democracy, capitalism, the market economy, privateproperty rights and a limited welfare state (for example, government provisionfor education and medical care). In modern times, it is sometimes used todescribe laissez-faire capitalism. They support a decentralized economy basedon economic freedom, and holds property rights, free markets and free trade tobe the most important kinds of freedom. John (2003) citing Kirk believed thatfreedom and property rights are interlinked. Centrism or the centre in politicsis a viewpoint or particular position that entails acceptance or balance supportof a degree of social equity and social hierarchy degree, despite the fact thatopposing political changes which would result in a major society shift eitherstrongly to the left or the right (Woshinsky, 2008).
Centre-left andcentre-right both commonly involve relationship with centrism combined withleaning somewhat to their respective sides of the spectrum. Radical centre,radical middle and radical centrism are terms for ranges of politicalphilosophy with eagerness to primarily restructuring institutions with the convictionthat genuine solutions to social problems require realism and pragmatism, inaddition to idealism and emotion. Most radical centrists borrow what theyperceive as good ideas from both “left” and “right” ideology ranges andwherever else they may be found, frequently melding them together in uniqueways of grand diversity. A government is the system throughwhich a state or a group of people is controlled and ruled (Oxford EnglishDictionary, 2010). In general, it is composed of the administrators(executives), legislators and arbitrators. Ideally, government is the means throughwhich policies of state are put into effect, in addition to the mechanism fordetermining the state policies. Types of government, or types of stategovernance, embody the set of political systems and institutions that structurea specific government organization. Various governments across the globe wieldcontrol over the economy, social freedoms, and political systems and may or maynot be voluntary.
Basically, governments are primed to legislate for, and putinto effect, environmental transformations that may be preventive. Governmentsacross the nations have different political orientations, ideologies, policiesand convictions that determine their imagery in the minds of people, both thecitizenry and outside communities. Government image within the framework ofmarketing strategy can be seen in the light of nation’s brand in relation topolicy implementations, governance, trading, bilateral and multilateralrelationships, law and human right enforcement imprinted in the minds of thecitizenry, international organizations and institutions, as well as outsiders.
Thegovernments’ imagery and the economic performance of countries largely show somelinks particularly, where there are closed and opened economies, enforcement oflaws or human right abuses and environmental conservation. TheUnited Nations introduced good governance practices characteristics as an internationalstandard to be espoused by governments that accept their assistance. Accordingto the United Nations, “good governance has 8 major characteristics; it isparticipatory, consensus oriented, accountable, transparent, responsive,effective and efficient, equitable and inclusive, and follows the rule of law”(UNESCAP, 2009). Often such criteria are applied by international organizationsand beneficiary nations to appraise the manner their governments are attainingbetter governance (Mimicopoulos et al., 2007).
In addition, internationalorganizations have contended that good governance positively affects thequality work of the government, the manner services are provided to theircitizens, as well as the manner programmes are implemented (Agere, 2002;Mimicopoulos et al., 2007).Bothmarketing academics and practitioners over the years have diverted their focusaway from product brands to corporate brands (Ward & Lee, 2000), and morerecently towards nation brands (Rojas-Mendez, Murphy & Papadopoulos, 2013;Hakala & Lemmetyinen, 2011; Dinnie, 2008). As the concept of nationbranding gain popularity, some scholars have suggested that nation brand may beseen and treated as a product or corporate brand (Papadopoulos & Heslop,2002).
This view stem from the fact that corporations have logos, jargons,culture, and employees, while countries have flags, language, culture, andcitizens respectively (Anholt, 2002). This is reinforced by the fact that anation brand has a multinational nature and diverse stakeholder interactions(Hankinson, 2004; Trueman, Klemm & Giroud, 2004) and nations are also facedintense competition due to globalization just as corporations (Osei , 2010; Hanna & Rowley, 2008; Anholt, 2007). As a result, theworld is being perceived today as one market and in order to succeed, nationsmust be distinctive and enhance their image in global arena (Caldwell , 2004).Thegovernment’s imagery role can be useful in fostering entrepreneurship andeconomic growth.
Most efforts to stimulate business creation and expansion havebeen in the form of tax incentives. 1.2 Summaryof Methods in Explaining Government Image There are severalmethods used in both field of academia and practice to explain the governmentimage.
Among these explanation methods are the systems of governance, methodsof selecting the executives, relationship between levels of government, mediarelation, trust, nation-branding and consonance. Systems of governance relateto “the processes of interactions and decision-making among the actors involvedin a collective problem that lead to the creation, reinforcement, orreproduction of social norms and institutions” (Hufty, 2011). A variety ofentities (known generically as governing bodies) can govern.
The most formal isa government, a body whose sole responsibility and authority is to make bindingdecisions in a given geopolitical system such as state by establishing laws. Whendiscussing governance in particular nation or state, the quality of governancewithin is often compared to standards set by global bodies such as UnitedNations, continental and regional bodies. Actually, good governance relates toconsistent management, cohesive policies, guidance, processes and rightdecisions for a given area of responsibility, and proper oversight andaccountability. “Good governance” implies that mechanisms function in a waythat allows the executive to respect the rights and interest of the people inspirit of democracy. This method has become a globally accepted standard indetermining and explaining government image of a country.
Anything short ofthese measures places the government image of that country in bad light. Comparatively,the advantages of using system of nation’s governance to determine governmentimage are that, it follows the global standards which are well defined by the internationalcommunity with no distinctions irrespective of believe system, values andsocial orientations of a particular country. Disadvantage of using this methodused in determining government image is that, all the determinants aresubjective to varied interpretations depending on ideological differences. Methodof selecting executives globally comes with competition (healthy andunhealthy), tensions, acrimonies and invitation to struggle.
In any case,method of selecting nation’s executives varies from place to place. Even in themonarchy system, tensions and struggles and acrimonies are not rule out. Thismethod is used globally to assess government image. Depending on the level oftension, acrimonies, and struggle in selecting it is either considered fair orotherwise. The government image is dented when all the elements making theprocess healthy and fair are abused and not followed. The distinction betweenthis method and others are that method of selecting executives bother on humanright issues, and far reaching implication on human lives and trade. Theadvantage of using method of selecting executives is it engages globalattention and concern. Disadvantage of this method is that it complex tointerpret and soon the new executives are selected different picture can beportrayed to international community.
Relationshipbetween levels of government has to do with separation of powers anddecentralization. This method used to explain government image varies from onepolitical administration to another. However, almost all politicaladministrations have executive, judicial and legislative.
The level of autonomyand independence to a very large extent describe the healthy or insanitarynature of government image. The difference between this method and others isthat it affords the any assessor an opportunity to evaluate the level oftotalitarianism as well as prevailing rule of law. The advantage ofrelationship between levels of government is mainly due to its ability todetermine the level of dictatorship of executive in relation to decisionmaking. The disadvantage of the method is that it subjects to ideologicalinterpretations and governance approach. Withrespect to media relation, trust, nation-branding and consonance in marketing,the difference is that their interpretations are more objective thanideological subjectivity. Their analytical interpretations in the field ofmarketing can be done using either qualitatively or quantitative approach. Thedisadvantage of the method is its costs in collecting enough data from the massrespondents that will reflect the generality of the outcome.
In this study,media relation, trust, nation-branding and consonance were chosen in determiningthe government image in relation to economic performance for the followingreasons, to appraise:i. how government image is promoted by mediarelation, ii. how the trust of business communityimpact on government image,iii. how the nation branding projects thegovernment image, andiv. how the government image is elevated byconsonance 1.3 StudyObjectivesTheobjectives of the research include, to:· Determine the significant statisticalinfluence government image has on the nation’s economic performance.
· Find out the extent government imageinfluences the nation’s economic performance.· Identify the factor elements that enhancesgovernment image in relation to marketing strategy. · Make recommendations as how thesegovernment image variables could be improved to enhance economic performance. 1.4 Area of FocusPerformanceof countries globally are usually viewed from the perspective of economicswithout due consideration to other subjects interpretations. Marketing isbelieved to be a core of all business activities including governance of nationsthat can be used to determine and interpret nation’s economic performance.
Nation branding attempts to reduce the identity-image gap by identifyingprejudices and misperceptions as well as enabling it to dismantle and opposethe negative force that could: (1) hold back the nation’s economic development(2) damage the nation’s standing in the world community. The significance ofthis study is to establish a link from marketing perspective between image ofgovernment and economic performance. The outcome of the results is expected tohighlights the elements of government image that significantly influence theeconomic performance of the country. Hence, the suggested recommendations areexpected to be used by developing countries, particularly those in Sub-Africawho share similar characteristics to that of Ghana.
It is to add facts andinformation to existing academic literature useful for referencing. 1.5 DelimitationsAsthe nation Ghana has experienced diverse forms governance since its independencethen it becomes a perfect case for this study. The study will look at economicperformance of Ghana vis-à-vis the governance regimes since its independence toestablish a trend. In this study economic performance will be defined in termsof growth domestic product (GDP/capita) while government image is described interms of factors such as media relations, trust, nation branding andconsonance.
1.6 Chapter Disposition Thisresearch was organized into six main chapters. Chapter One, Introduction,comprise of background to the study, summary of methods in explaininggovernment image, study objectives, areas of focus, delimitations, and chapterdisposition. Chapter Two, Literature Review, consist of theoretical review,empirical review, and summary of the chapter.
Chapter three presents Ghana’s economic performance andpolitical governance. Chapter four,Research Methodology, captures research design, data collection approach, datacollection ethics and method of data analysis. Chapter five, data presentation,results and discussion presents the processed data, analyses and discussions.Chapter six, conclusion and recommendation, presents summary of the findings,conclusion based on the research questions, limitations of the study andrecommendations. 1.
7 Creative OpinionGhana,due to her different political regimes and governments since its independencethe economic performance has gone through various twists and turns. The countryhas experienced both military and multi-party regimes. In each of the case, itseconomic performance has gone through some form of changes, some impressiveperformance, others dreadful. During the military regimes in the 1960s, 1970s,1980s and 1990s, the business communities were the worst sufferers of the bluntof dictatorships, autocracies, repressions and despotisms tendencies. At somestage in these eras, local businesses who could not withstood the vagaries ofthe economy collapsed while others, particularly, multinationals eitherrelocated to the safer destinations or reduced their investments. In all theseregime periods, the image of governments appeared shoddier and woefully affectedthe economic performance of the country even notwithstanding some successchucked by some of them.
Examining the economic performance of the country, it showsevidently that gross domestic products (GDP/capita), the measure of economicperformance, during these military regimes proved more terrible depiction thandemocratic dispensations.Also,even under the democratic dispensations, at some periods of times the economicperformance dips as result of lack of investments in the economy and relocationof businesses which were purportedly on the account of governments’ image. Asideologies and policies in politics cannot be ruled out, some political partiesin the reins of power attracts more foreign direct investments (FDIs) andbusinesses than the others.
Political parties that are branded businessfriendly are bound to attract more FDIs and businesses and hence grow theeconomy in more positive way.By this rendition, it clear that there is a linkbetween the economic performance and the image of government. As under certainregimes, the economic performance of the country blossom while also withincertain regimes it becomes worst-off.
The image of government is very criticalto every nation’s economic performance because in marketing, national brandingwhich is almost synonymous to government image is all that the investors bothlocal and foreigners need to promote businesses to enhance economic growth.Hence, this study seek to analyze the influence government image has onnation’s economic performance, and the extent of the influence. Due to numberof key stakeholders involve in determining the government’s image and economicperformance are numerous, this study concentrates mainly on business entitieswhose outputs and performances have direct benefits or otherwise on both the householdsand the nation.