As indicated in section 42 this significantly

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Unformatted text preview: more interested in decision analysis. Often the respondents from these companies were actively involved in this change and, on many occasions, they perceived the current study as a vehicle for initiating or encouraging it. As indicated in section 4.2, this significantly affected the response rate and also resulted in these respondents being particularly forthcoming 70 with information on company practice. If it had been possible to return to these companies, it would have been interesting to look further on the effect of the mergers on companies’ investment appraisal decision-making practices. Thirdly, resource and time constraints affected the number of people consulted in each company. Despite the initial intention to consult multiple respondents in each company this was often not possible. Typically, only one person in each company was interviewed usually this individual was the Exploration, Commercial or License Manager. Bowman and Ambrosini (1997) have described the dangers of using singlerespondents to ascertain company practice. They argue that where single-respondents are used, the researchers must be convinced that the research results are not dependent on the person that happened to be surveyed or interviewed. In this study, where the researcher felt there was the possibility of bias from a particular company representative, this data was disregarded and another respondent in that organisation sought. Hence, the researcher is confident that the data gathered is representative of company practice. Furthermore, in this study, as indicated above, it was the Exploration Managers that were usually interviewed. In most companies Exploration Managers are usually involved in generating investment proposals and presenting these proposals to the boards of their companies. So, in most cases, this individual is often the only person in the company who has been involved in both generating the analysis and witnessing the investment decision-making process. 4.4 CONCLUSION The methodology that was used to explore the research questions set out in Chapter 1 has been described and critically evaluated in this chapter. In doing so, it has provided an example of how research can differ from the ordered and rational approaches of the more prescriptive research methodology texts. The limitations of the current study have been highlighted. Directions for future research will be proposed in Chapter 8. The following chapter presents the results from the first stage of the research. Specifically, it aims to identify the tools that are available to the upstream oil and gas industry for investment appraisal decision-making. 71 Chapter 5 Current capability in investment appraisal in the upstream oil and gas industry 72 5.1 INTRODUCTION This chapter focuses on answering the first research question proposed in Chapter 1. It draws on the discussion in Chapters 2 and 3, the decision theory and industry literatures and insights gained at conferences and workshops, to present the ra...
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