Corporate MOTing: Hints and Tips on Interpreting Business Reportage Part One: Annual Reports: What Are They Good For? by Doreen Soutar

Mindful consumption is a concept that is increasingly acceptable in the mainstream. We pretty much all have an idea of what a ‘green’ or ‘ethical’ product is like – sort of – and a lot of us would like to buy more of this kind of product, even if we don’t always manage to live up to the image of ourselves we give to market researchers about how green we are.
Now, I am not having a go at you – there are only a select few of us who have been spared the necessity of buying the cheap generic version of a product rather than the premium-priced fair-trade/local/organic/hemp-wrapped/made-on-the-premises-by-virgin-youths version. Sure we would all rather have the good stuff, but being hungry is not a reasonable option to being ethical. And your bum survives being attacked by cheap toilet roll now and again. So going cheap is neither sinful nor unusual. Read more…

The Moral Marketplace by Doreen Soutar

As Kermit famously said, it’s not easy being green. And ironically, as ethical consumption gets more popular, it has also become more difficult to judge which products are ethical and which aren’t. In this article, we start by looking at the part emotion plays in purchasing decisions and the gradual demand for greater product morality. We assume that sellers – spookily enough – are highly interested in selling us stuff, and getting our money is what gets them out of bed in the morning.
We end up at the shocking conclusion that we will only get more ethical products if we give our cash to sellers that treat their produce as if it is worth something to them. Bet you weren’t expecting that!
Read more…

24th Sept 2015: Evolving for Girls by Doreen Soutar

Question Evolution

Come along to The Counting House at 7pm to listen to Doreen, share a crust of bread, and listen to her ideas on girls and evolution…


Title of talk:

Evolving for Girls

Bullet points of what you would like to talk about:

A wry look at how evolutionary psychology currently narrates human evolution and the interaction between the genders in terms of mate selection. It will suggest that:

  • The current narrative of mate selection is a tad male-centred
  • The current mate selection model has some quite fundamental problems trying to explain what women are actually like
  • Some of these theories are highly amusing
  • A female-centred version of evolution might be a bit of a good idea
  • There are some quite good reasons for supporting a female viewpoint, including being a woman and preferring to have a say in mate selection theories about you.
  • A few suggestions for a female-centred model of mate selection will be offered up for consideration.

Read more…

The Banking Game: Literature Review Part Three and Conclusion by Doreen Soutar

The Banking Game: Analysis of the extinction of the bank as trusted institution and NONIIs as an indicator of non-reciprocal strategies by Doreen Soutar. This is the third part of her literature review and conclusion to her investigation…

Retail Banking: a Co-Operative Model

The savings and loans banking division operates in a social environment which is built on repeated encounters, engendering the growth of mutual trust and cooperation (Motashemi & Mui, 2003). Here, customers are given to believe that the bank is essentially working for the augmented good of the group, where community wellbeing is the main focus rather than the wealth of the bank, as is implied in the statement by the CEO in Barclays’ annual statement (Diamond, 2010). This is not restricted to the equality of reciprocity of a single lender and the bank, but also applies to altruism “fed forward” in an emergent, and customers benefit at different times in differing amounts.
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The Banking Game: Literature Review Part Two by Doreen Soutar

The Banking Game: Analysis of the extinction of the bank as trusted institution and NONIIs as an indicator of non-reciprocal strategies by Doreen Soutar. This is the second part of her literature review…

Banking: A Dual-Strategy Model

The banking industry operates in two distinct environments: financial trading and retail savings and loans (Casu et al 2006) and this has in the past resulted in the banks developing two distinct behavioural patterns to cope with these environments: a competitive model and a cooperative model. The competitive model was suitable for environments such as the stock market, where the inhabitants agreed to fight each other for available resources. The cooperative model was more suitable for retail banking environment, where customers assume that there is a fundamental principle of honourable group-focused behaviour (King, 2010; Kennedy, 2010). Read more…

The Banking Game: Literature Review Part One by Doreen Soutar

Contrary to many claims at the time, there is a considerable literature prior to the 2007 crash which demonstrates that the circumstances necessary for impending crisis existed. For example, Taylor (1999) noted that “….in a decade perhaps only a dozen mammoth financial institutions may remain….

in the next three to five years, European banks profits will come under severe pressure” (p.60), Nabudere (2009) noted that there are many similarities between the crashes of the 1980s and 2007, and in a history of financial crises, Winter (2005) suggests that they typically have a signature context of a tendency to speculate and lax credit controls. In short, many commentators and researchers suggest that it could have and indeed was predicted, but the portents were ignored. Read more…