The perceived influence of a city to the world determines its reputations beyond the capacity of their assets or even overall achievements. Although Germany has had a prolonged perception of leadership in Europe, German has been overpowered by US mainly through the loss of gains it had acquired during the World Cup season. Besides, the city also lost its position as a result of questionable governance that entails both domestic and international behaviors arising from its high profile stand on the European challenges including the unstable Eurozone economic situation and immigration. In essence, the perception of Russia on the governance of Germany also dropped considerably as a result of Germans proactive support on the anti-Russian sanctions too.
UK holds a steady third position has been an improvement in this ranking. Other countries that demonstrated a significant improvement includes Japan and Italy that were above the average expectations while at the same time pushing top five nations further. On the other hand, Greece has been facing certain chronic economic issues hence for a long time; the city has been straining to maintain its image with considerable decline by virtue of all indicators used. Beyond the top 20 nations, there are other countries that have been performing equally well and are making significant efforts in their growth towards major brands globally.
In essence, low scenes of conflicts has been perceived as essentially promoting the perception of the entire region in general while a city like Czech Republic capital having been edged past its counterparts in ranking profile. Similarly, Turkey is also reported to have increased its ratings but not significant enough to warrant its competitiveness with other Asian-Pacific nations such as Taiwan and Thailand. While Switzerland has been performing quite well in nation brand image, there are certain elements that have been indicated as the main aspects that has promoted its performance in the international perspective. For instance, the city is credited with highly efficient transportation, banking industry, beautiful sceneries, hospitable population and efficient business acumen among others.
Russia has also risen from the previous 25 ranking level 22 hence overtaking some of its rivals namely, Singapore, China and Argentina while Ukraine has moved from 48th position to 46th while overtaking both Kenya and Qatar. This advancement of the Russian performance by nation brand was a product of gradually declining Ukraine-Russian conflicts while there is a significant improvement in their performance by measure of governance on both states. There was an elaborate improvement in perceptions towards the countries’ behavior in peace and security segments. Nation Branding is considered very challenging in many aspects.
The traits of indigenous people from Singapore, China and Argentina or other countries are diverse. In this regard, this informs the reason behind the diverse design ideas that indigenous people have on the society. The focus and utilization of economic resources and capital across different geographical precincts is also diverse. In essence, it is often shaped by the individual attributes of social developments. The manipulation of the available resources in the country or a city region is one of the crucial determiners of excellence of the community within the prospects of that city. However, the indigenous belief systems of city residents define the choice of behaviors and activities to which individuals put their resources into. The identification and development of a resource based framework of a city design could result into significant deterrence on new or imported ideas in the city designs development due to varying sets of economic resources from different regions of the world.
The practitioners or city designers often encounter significant challenges when attempting to brand a city due to the existence of complex structure of the nation brands. Nation brands are eminently complex in nature compared with either product or corporate brands although they may share certain similarities. However, nation brands could be very beneficial to any city globally in many aspects but create emotional benefits. Nation Branding is very complex, vague and diverse due to the existence of multiple stakeholders and other externalities which are firmly uncontrollable but influencing the city’s image. For a product brand, it holds a very simple and clears.
Nation brand seeks to promote the reputation of a city similar to the purpose of a corporate image that seeks to enhancing and developing effective relationship with stakeholders. On the contrary, the main objective of a product brand is often focused on boosting the respective product sales. This may however be incorporated into the nation brand perspective as well. Nation brand may however vary from economic to political and social-cultural perspective as opposed to both product and corporate brands which are virtually anchored on the economic dimensions. Besides, the audience of Nation Branding may be international and highly diverse.
As opposed to a product or corporate brands, nation brand is owned by multiple stakes including all the citizens of a city. This however posts another form of complexity in nation branding in the determination of coordination of nation brand. In essence, nation brand does not merely belong to the brand mangers alone but to the citizens at large. Without a strong leadership, research indicates that no campaigns for nation branding can succeed. This approach that perceives all the stakeholders as potential owners of the nation brand is often embraced contrary to the approach that prescribes brand ownership to a particular group of individuals or corporate who are directly involved in the development of the brand. Nation Brand is developed through multiple processes among them, the development of the cities which are the main image points of the country from the international community.
2.6. Social, Economic, Political and Gender Factors; Ghana
Ghana comprised of several ethnics societies. After successful disengagement from the British rule, the country has made significant progress including the establishment of English as the official Language. Nevertheless, religious wars and inter-ethnic group wars coupled with cultural clashes has remained a major challenge. To date, the Islamist group of Boko Haram has remained a major security threat due to its stretch from Nigeria to the country, an aspect that has been perceived to be catalyzed by political ideologies. The country has had a significant period of political instability and regional strife for long for some times though recent observations have seen the country experience some internal sense of calmness.
Due to political and religious instability, the country has failed significantly to account for its natural resources with massive corruption has left the majority of citizens in dire poverty and grossly poor infrastructure. This aspect has left international investments at a skeptical move to establish businesses in the region while opening other favored business establishment like Agriculture and food production since it forms one of the business human needs under lower production in the country. In this regard, poor political alignment of the country has resulted in poor investments and immensely low investment in Agriculture while capitalizing on the capital intensive petroleum industry.
Ghana is a country rich in cultures and traditions. Despite the fact that Ghana had been under British colonial rule for about a century, it has been characterized with high retention of distinct identity hence becoming exceedingly distinguishable from other states from the entire continent. With an insight to the countries current environment and climatic conditions, analyzing and interpreting the country’s cultural dimensions is therefore central to understanding the real effect of the strong cultures of the country on business performance particularly ones with international decent. The main cultural dimensions of Ghana include politics, Religion and Education that has a significant influence on the business performances.
Ghana is considered to have one of the largest higher education systems together with it Nigerian counterpart in Africa. However, the demands for such education supersede the available facilities with about 50 percent of the population located in the rural areas with little to no education. This aspect results in low manipulation of available technologies. The family set ups consists of about ten children per house hold majority of whom are incapable of accessing institutions of learning and therefore unable to take the available jobs on technical basis. This demonstrates the low technological adoption by the extensive population although the urban set ups constitutes of relatively high technological usages.
Economically, the country is heavily endowed with investments from the oil industry and mining operations. Besides, the country has been seeking additional growth aimed at rebooting its failing economy. For instance, the crude oil accounted for more than 95 percent of the country’s exports and 80% of the total revenue collected by the government in 2002. This positioned the country sixth in the global oil exporting countries. While there is heavy investment in petroleum, the country has apparently neglected the Agricultural sector and needs of its economy. With significantly low investment in Agriculture and food production sectors in general, the country has a high demand for agricultural supplies particularly on food items that characterize a significant proportion of its foreign dependency. The understanding of the cultural dynamics, politics and religions is critical to business establishment and enhancement in the region as these factors acts as social indicators of the business performance determiners.
Ghana has also started embracing the technology of third world particularly eminent in the production of Nollywood Movies productions. However, this embracement is only possible where resources allow. Indeed, the country has relative few educational opportunities and apparently missing Human Rights and Welfare initiatives leaving the rural population virtually forgotten. This aspects of the country’s educational system influences both political and economic establishment of the country with majority of the citizens in rural areas less concerned with the politics of the country leading to low development in the long-run via a noble-peasant political system. The above factors influence the choice the Ghanaian people as far s their choices in life is concerned. In order to develop new ideas in the country and development of Main Street design in Kpone in particular, social, economic and political factors analyzed above must be central to this Projection.