Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 43

Search results for: Albania

43 Youth NEET in Albania: Current Situation and Outreach Mechanisms

Authors: Emiljan Karma


One of the major problems of the present is young people who are not concerned with employment, education, or training (NEETs). Unfortunately, this group of people in Albania is a considerable part of working-age people, and despite the measures taken, they remain a major problem. NEETs in Albania are very heterogeneous. This is since youth unemployment and inactivity rate are at a very high level (Albania has the highest NEET rate among EU candidates/potential candidates’ countries and EU countries); the high level of NEET rate in Albania means that government agencies responsible for labour market regulation and other social actors interested in the phenomenon (representatives of employees, representatives of employers, non-governmental organizations, etc.) did not effectively materialize the policies in the field of youth employment promotion. The National Agency for Employment and Skills (NAES) delivers measures specifically designed to target unemployed youth, being the key stakeholder in the implementation of employment policies and skills development in Albania. In the context of identifying and assisting NEETs, this role becomes even stronger. The experience of different EU countries (e.g., Youth Guarantee) indicates that there are different policy-making structures and various outreach mechanisms for constraining the youth NEET phenomenon. The purpose of this research is to highlight: (1) The identification of NEETs feature in Albania; (2) The identification of tailored and efficient outreach mechanisms to assist vulnerable NEETs; (3) The fundamental importance of stakeholders’ partnership at central and regional level.

Keywords: labor market, NEETs, non-registered NEETs, unemployment

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42 Traditional Uses of Medicinal Plants in Albania: Historical and Theoretical Considerations

Authors: Ani Bajrami


The birth of traditional medicine is related to plant diversity in a region, and the knowledge regarding them has been used and culturally transmitted over generations by members of a certain society. In this context, Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) concerning the use of plants for medicinal purposes had survival value and was adaptive for people living in different habitats around the world. Albanian flora has a high considerably number of medicinal plants, and they have been extensively used albeit expressed in folk medicinal knowledge and practices. Over the past decades, a number of ethnobotanical studies and extensive fieldwork has been conducted in Albania both by local and foreign scientists. In addition, ethnobotany is experiencing a theoretical and conceptual diversification. This article is a historical review of ethnobotanical studies conducted in Albania after the Second World War and provides theoretical considerations on how these studies should be conducted in the future.

Keywords: medicinal plants, traditional ecological knowledge, historical ethnobotany, theory, albania

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41 Tourism as Economic Resource for Protecting the Landscape: Introducing Touristic Initiatives in Coastal Protected Areas of Albania

Authors: Enrico Porfido


The paper aims to investigate the relation between landscape and tourism, with a special focus on coastal protected areas of Albania. The relationship between tourism and landscape is bijective: There is no tourism without landscape attractive features and on the other side landscape needs economic resources to be conserved and protected. The survival of each component is strictly related to the other one. Today, the Albanian protected areas appear as isolated islands, too far away from each other to build an efficient network and to avoid waste in terms of energy, economy and working force. This study wants to stress out the importance of cooperation in terms of common strategies and the necessity of introducing a touristic sustainable model in Albania. Comparing the protection system laws of the neighbor countries of the Adriatic-Ionian region and through a desk review on the best practices of protected areas that benefit from touristic activities, the study proposes the creation of the Albanian Riviera Landscape Park. This action will impact positively the whole southern Albania territory, introducing a sustainable tourism network that aims to valorize the local heritage and to stop the coastal exploitation processes. The main output is the definition of future development scenarios in Albania with the establishment of new protected areas and the introduction of touristic initiatives.

Keywords: Adriatic-Ionian region, protected areas, tourism for landscape, sustainable tourism

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40 Teaching Based Ranking of Departments Using PageRank

Authors: Rudina Osmanaj, Dafina Xhako, Klaudio Peqini


In this work, we present some results of the teaching-based ranking of the departments in the Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Tirana, using the PageRank and the PowerMethod algorithm. We have considered the teaching connections of eight departments between them in ten bachelor programs offered by the Faculty of Natural Sciences, UT in Albania and used the PageRank algorithm as an application of the power method for finding the most teaching-based ranked department. The idea is that each department's lecturers give lessons in different bachelor programs offered by other departments, covering their study and research areas. As the PageRank algorithm measures the importance of each node (department) within the graph, based on the number of incoming relationships (teaching connections) and the importance of the corresponding source nodes, we make a simple teaching-based ranking of the Natural Sciences departments, in UT, Albania.

Keywords: Albania, departments, natural sciences, PageRank, power method, ranking, teaching

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39 Detection of Total Aflatoxin in Flour of Wheat and Maize Samples in Albania Using ELISA

Authors: Aferdita Dinaku, Jonida Canaj


Aflatoxins are potentially toxic metabolites produced by certain kinds of fungi (molds) that are found naturally all over the world; they can contaminate food crops and pose a serious health threat to humans by mutagenic and carcinogenic effects. Several types of aflatoxin (14 or more) occur in nature. In Albanian nutrition, cereals (especially wheat and corn) are common ingredients in some traditional meals. This study aimed to investigate the presence of aflatoxins in the flour of wheat and maize that are consumed in Albania’s markets. The samples were collected randomly in different markets in Albania and detected by the ELISA method, measured in 450 nm. The concentration of total aflatoxins was analyzed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), and they were ranged between 0.05-1.09 ppb. However, the screened mycotoxin levels in the samples were lower than the maximum permissible limits of European Commission No 1881/2006 (4 μg/kg). The linearity of calibration curves was good for total aflatoxins (B1, B2, G1, G2, M1) (R²=0.99) in the concentration range 0.005-4.05 ppb. The samples were analyzed in two replicated measurements and for each sample, the standard deviation (statistical parameter) is calculated. The results showed that the flour samples are safe, but the necessity of performing such tests is necessary.

Keywords: aflatoxins, ELISA technique, food contamination, flour

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38 The Feminine Speech and the Ritual of Death in Albania

Authors: Aida Lamaj


Death is an inevitable phenomenon in our life, in the same way, are also the ritual of death accompanied by the dirge and the keening performed by men. Keening is a phenomenon common among all peoples, the instances in which the ritual of death and keening coincide, as a special phenomenon of its, are numerous given the fact that keening is an outcome of an extremely special emotional state. However, even during the ritual of death, every people try to display through words its qualities, a multitude of characteristics preserved and transmitted with fanaticism from one generation to the other. The ritual of death constitutes an important element of our tradition and at the same time a material always interesting to be studied in minute details. In this study, we have tried to limit ourselves to the feminine speech, since keening, in general in Albania has been carried out by women. Differences and similarities among keening on the national scale, from the diachronic and synchronic point of view, can be seen clearly if we compare the Albanian creations in different regions. The similarities and differences within the Albanian culture serve as a typical paradigm to study how the ancient elements of outlook that the Albanians have had on death, history, and the social organization in these regions have been preserved and transmitted and above all, in what way these feelings have been clothed from the linguistic point of view, the typologies of keening and of all of the ritual of death, which clearly shows archaic forms as well as new developments. These data have been gathered not only by conducting various surveys but also by observing closely the linguistic behavior of women in Albania during the ritual of death. The study has encompassed the popular lyric poetry as well as new entries, whereas from the geographic point of view we focus mainly in the Southern regions, although examples from other regions where Albanian speaking people live are also present. The main results of the study show that women use much more than men dialect form, peripheral language elements and descriptive elements during their speech in the ritual of death.

Keywords: feminine speech in Albania, linguistic characteristics of the dirge, ritual of death, the typologies of keening

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37 Prediction of Coronary Heart Disease Using Fuzzy Logic

Authors: Elda Maraj, Shkelqim Kuka


Coronary heart disease causes many deaths in the world. Unfortunately, this problem will continue to increase in the future. In this paper, a fuzzy logic model to predict coronary heart disease is presented. This model has been developed with seven input variables and one output variable that was implemented for 30 patients in Albania. Here fuzzy logic toolbox of MATLAB is used. Fuzzy model inputs are considered as cholesterol, blood pressure, physical activity, age, BMI, smoking, and diabetes, whereas the output is the disease classification. The fuzzy sets and membership functions are chosen in an appropriate manner. Centroid method is used for defuzzification. The database is taken from University Hospital Center "Mother Teresa" in Tirana, Albania.

Keywords: coronary heart disease, fuzzy logic toolbox, membership function, prediction model

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36 Data about Loggerhead Sea Turtle (Caretta caretta) and Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas) in Vlora Bay, Albania

Authors: Enerit Sacdanaku, Idriz Haxhiu


This study was conducted in the area of Vlora Bay, Albania. Data about Sea Turtles Caretta caretta and Chelonia mydas, belonging to two periods of time (1984–1991; 2008–2014) are given. All data gathered were analyzed using recent methodologies. For all turtles captured (as by catch), the Curve Carapace Length (CCL) and Curved Carapace Width (CCW) were measured. These data were statistically analyzed, where the mean was 67.11 cm for CCL and 57.57 cm for CCW of all individuals studied (n=13). All untagged individuals of marine turtles were tagged using metallic tags (Stockbrand’s titanium tag) with an Albanian address. Sex was determined and resulted that 45.4% of individuals were females, 27.3% males and 27.3% juveniles. All turtles were studied for the presence of the epibionts. The area of Vlora Bay is used from marine turtles (Caretta caretta) as a migratory corridor to pass from the Mediterranean to the northern part of the Adriatic Sea.

Keywords: Caretta caretta, Chelonia mydas, CCL, CCW, tagging, Vlora Bay

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35 Population Structure of Europian Pond Turtles, Emys Orbicularis (Linnaeus, 1758) in Narta Lagoon (Vlora Bay, Albania)

Authors: Enerit Saçdanaku, Idriz Haxhiu


In this study was monitored the population of the European Pond Turtle, Emys orbicularis (Linnaeus, 1758) in the area of Narta Lagoon, Vlora Bay (Albania), from August to October 2014. A total of 54 individuals of E. orbicularis were studied using different methodologies. Curved Carapace Length (CCL), Plastron Length (PL) and Curved Carapace Width (CCW) were measured for each individual of E. orbicularis and were statistically analyzed. All captured turtles were separated in seven different size–classes based on their carapace length (CCL). Each individual of E. orbicularis was marked by notching the carapace (marginal scutes). Form all individuals captured resulted that 37 were females (68.5%), 14 males (25.9%), 3 juveniles (5.5%), while 18 individuals of E. orbicularis were recaptured for the first and some for the second time.

Keywords: Emys orbicularis, female, juvenile, male, population, size–classes

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34 Government Responses to the Survivors of Trafficking in Human Beings: A Study of Albania

Authors: Irida Agolli Nasufi, Anxhela Bruci


This paper presents Albanian government policies regarding the reintegration process for returning Albanian survivors of trafficking in human beings. Focusing on an in-depth analysis of governmental, non-governmental documents and semi-structured qualitative interviews conducted with service providers and trafficking survivors. Furthermore, this paper will especially focus on the governmental efforts to provide support to the survivors, focusing on their needs and challenges. This study explores the conditions and actual services provided to the survivors of trafficking in human beings that are in the reintegration process in Albania. Moreover, it examines the responsible mechanisms accountable for the reintegration process, by analysing synergies between governmental and non-governmental organisations. Also, this paper explores the governmental approach towards trafficking survivors and apprises policymakers to undertake changes and reforms in their future actions.

Keywords: policies, social services, service user, trafficking in human beings, government

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33 Natural Hazards and Their Costs in Albanian Part of Ohrid Graben

Authors: Mentor Sulollari


Albania, according to (UNU-EHS) United Nations University, Institute for Environment and Human Security studies for 2015, is listed as the number one country in Europe for the possibility to be caught by natural catastrophes. This is conditioned by unstudied human activity, which has seriously damaged the environment. Albanian part of Ohrid graben that lies in Southeast of Albania, is endangered by landslides and floods, as a result of uncontrolled urban development and low level of investment in infrastructure, rugged terrain in its western part and capricious climate caused by global warming. To be dealt with natural disasters, which cause casualties and material damage, it is important to study them in order to anticipate and reduce damages in future. As part of this study is the construction of natural hazards map, which show us where they are distributed, and which are the vulnerable areas. This article will also be dealing with socio-economic and environmental costs of those events and what are the measures to be taken to reduce them.

Keywords: flooding, landslides, natural catastrophes mapping, Pogradec, lake Ohrid, Albanian part of Ohrid graben

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32 Microbial Assessment of Dairy Byproducts in Albania as a Basis for Consumer Safety

Authors: Klementina Puto, Ermelinda Nexhipi, Evi Llaka


Dairy by-products are a fairly good environment for microorganisms due to their composition for their growth. Microbial populations have a significant impact in the production of cheese, butter, yogurt, etc. in terms of their organoleptic quality and at the same time some also cause their breakdown. In this paper, the microbiological contamination of soft cheese, butter and yogurt produced in the country (domestic) and imported is assessed, as an indicator of hygiene with impact on public health. The study was extended during September 2018-June 2019 and was divided into three periods, September-December, January-March, and April-June. During this study, a total of 120 samples were analyzed, of which 60 samples of cheese and butter locally produced, and 60 samples of imported soft cheese and butter productions. The microbial indicators analyzed are Staphylococcus aureus and E. coli. Analyzes have been conducted at the Food Safety Laboratory (FSIV) in Tirana in accordance with EU Regulation 2073/2005. Sampling was performed according to the specific international standards for these products (ISO 6887 and ISO 8261). Sampling and transport of samples were done under sterile conditions. Also, coding of samples was done to preserve the anonymity of subjects. After the analysis, the country's soft cheese products compared to imports were more contaminated with S. aureus and E. coli. Meanwhile, the imported butter samples that were analyzed, resulted within norms compared to domestic ones. Based on the results, it was concluded that the microbial quality of samples of cheese, butter and yogurt analyzed remains a real problem for hygiene in Albania. The study will also serve business operators in Albania to improve their work to ensure good hygiene on the basis of the HACCP plan and to provide a guarantee of consumer health.

Keywords: consumer, health, dairy, by-products, microbial

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31 Assessment of Dental Caries in Children of Age 6 and 7 Years Old in Albania

Authors: Mimoza Canga, Irene Malagnino, Ruzhdie Qafmolla, Vergjini Mulo, Gresa Baboci, Vito Antonio Malagnino


Background: Dental caries represents the most widespread pathology in childhood. The prevalence of dental caries varies with age, gender, socio economic status, geographical location, nutrition habits, and oral hygiene. Objective: The objective of the present longitudinal study is to show clearly the prevalence of dental caries in the children of age 6 and 7 years old in Vlore, Albania, in a two year time period with controls done every 6 months. Materials and methods: The present study was conducted on 530 children, with a controlled sample for a time period of 24 months from September 2019- September 2021. The children in the study had different economic and social backgrounds. The teeth controls were done by the dentists who work at the hospital of the city. The present study was conducted in accordance with Helsinki declaration. Permissions were obtained in written form, which allowed us to perform the observations. Parents had the right to withdraw their children at any time. Statistical analysis was performed using IBM SPSS Statistics 23.0. The significance level (α) was set at 0.05, whereas P-value and analysis of variance (ANOVA) were used to analyze the data. Results: The data of the present study showed that the age group of 6 years old had 139 or 52.3% of the children with dental caries and 127 or 47.7% of them had no dental caries, while at the age of 7 there were 184 or 69.7% of the children with dental caries problems in the permanent molars and 80 or 30.3% of them had no dental caries. In the present study, it was observed that there is a statistically significant association between age group and presence of caries. Children 7 years old had higher presence of dental caries (χ2 = 16.934 (df 1) p-value < 0.001). According to the present research, there is a statistically significant correlation between period of time and the presence of dental caries. Furthermore, in the actual research, it was established that in the time 18-24 months, the prevalence of dental caries was high (χ2=15,318 (df 1) p-value = 0.004). Conclusion: According to the results of the present study performed in Albania in a two year time period with controls done every 6 months, it is proved that the prevalence of dental caries was 17.4 percent higher among children 7 years old in comparison with the children 6 years old.

Keywords: age, children, dental caries, permanent molars

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30 Human Security as a Tool of Protecting International Human Rights Law

Authors: Arenca Trashani


20 years after its first entrance in a General Assembly of the United Nation’s Resolution, human security has became a very important tool in a global debate affecting directly the whole main rules and regulations in international law and more closely in international human rights law. This paper will cover a very important issue of today at how the human security has its impact to the development of international human rights law, not as far as a challenge as it is seen up now but a tool of moving toward development and globalization. In order to analyze the impact of human security to the global agenda, we need to look to the main pillars of the international legal order which are affected by the human security in itself and its application in the policy making for this international legal order global and regional ones. This paper will focus, also, on human security, as a new and very important tool of measuring development, stability and the level of democratic consolidation and the respect for human rights especially in developing countries such as Albania. The states are no longer capable to monopolize the use of human security just within their boundaries and separated from the other principles of a functioning democracy. In this context, human security would be best guaranteed under the respect of the rule of law and democratization. During the last two decades the concept security has broadly developed, from a state-centric to a more human-centric approach: from state security to respect for human rights, to economic security, to environmental security as well. Last but not least we would see that human rights could be affected by human security not just at their promotion but also at their enforcement and mainly at the international institutions, which are entitled to promote and to protect human rights.

Keywords: human security, international human rights law, development, Albania, international law

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29 Environmental Impact Assessment Methodology of the Tirana–Elbasan Road Project

Authors: Aurora Cerri, Niko Pollojani


The Tirana – Elbasan Road project is the most important highway project in Albania, constructed in the period May 2011 - ongoing. This project included construction of 38 km highway category road including 2.6 km of tunnel. It serves as a corridor connecting the Tirana, Capital of Albania and South-East area, and in the near future it is expected to continue in the direction of Macedonian border. Environmental Impact Assesment procedure for this project is provided by the Albanian Environmental Law No. 10431. This law establishes the regulation of procedures for identifying, assessment and reporting on the effects of certain projects on the environment, and the associated administrative procedures, during the decision-making process by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism for issuing environmental permit, and ensures that all relevant information concerning the environment are provided and considered. Due to the nature and size of the project, during the environmental impact assessment process, the European Union legislation, namely the EIA Directive 85/337 / EEC is considered. Moreover, in some cases, due to the lack of national standards and practical guidelines, when necessary those of EU member countries are considered. This paper presents an analysis of the EIA procedure followed on ‘Tirana – Elbasan’ Road project, with a focus on the application of the main stages of the procedure such as: screening, scoping, review, the EIA report; and consideration of alternatives, measures for impact prevention and reduction, and the public hearing T/discussion.

Keywords: highway, environmental impact assesment, Tirana, prevention

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28 Indicators of Value of Life in Children with Colorectal Illness

Authors: Enkelejda Shkurti, Diamant Shtiza


Background: Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is a significant consequence in health care. The objective of our study was to recognize features related to lower HRQoL scores in children with anorectal malformation (ARM) and Hirschsprung disease (HD). Methods: Children younger than 18 years, with HD or ARM, that were assessed at our private clinic in Tirana, Albania, from December 2018 to October 2019, were acknowledged. The outcomes of broad questionnaires concerning diagnosis, symptoms, and preceding health/surgical history and authenticated tools to measure urinary status, stooling grade, and HRQoL were appraised. Results: In patients aged 0-6 years, vomiting and abdominal enlargement were allied with a substantial decrease in total HRQoL scores. In children > 6 years of age, vomiting, abdominal swelling, and abdominal discomfort were also linked to a considerably lower HRQoL. The main indicator of lower HRQoL scores on regression tree analysis in all age clusters was the occurrence of psychosomatic, behavioral, or progressive comorbidity. Conclusion: Children with both HD or ARM that have a psychosomatic, behavioral, or growing problem experience considerably lower HRQoL than patients deprived of such problems, proposing that establishment of behavioral/growing sustenance as part of the care of these patients may have a considerable influence on their HRQoL.

Keywords: anorectal malformation, Hirsch Sprung disease, quality of life, Albania

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27 Legal Warranty in Real Estate Registry in Albania

Authors: Elona Saliaj


The registration of real estate in Albania after the 90's has been a long process in time and with high cost for the country. Passing the registration system from a centralized system to a free market private system, it’s accompanied by legal uncertainties that have led to economic instability. The reforms that have been undertaken in terms of property rights have been numerous and continuous throughout the years. But despite the reforms, the system of registration of real estate, has failed to be standards requirements established by the European Union. The completion of initial registration of real estate, legal treatment of previous owners or legalization of illegal constructions remain among the main problems that prevent the development of the country in its economic sector. The performance of the registration of real estate system and dealing with issues that have appeared in the Court of First Instance, the civil section of the Albanian constitute the core of handling this analysis. This paper presents a detailed analysis on the registration system that is chosen to be applied in our country for real estate. In its content it is also determined the institution that administrates these properties, the management technique and the law that determinate its functionality. The strategy is determined for creating a modern and functional registration system and for the country remains a challenge to achieve. Identifying practical problems and providing their solutions are also the focus of reference in order to improve and modernize this important system to a state law that aims to become a member of the European Union.

Keywords: real estates registration system, comparative aspects, cadastral area, property certificate, legal reform

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26 Axial Load Capacity of Drilled Shafts from In-Situ Test Data at Semani Site, in Albania

Authors: Neritan Shkodrani, Klearta Rrushi, Anxhela Shaha


Generally, the design of axial load capacity of deep foundations is based on the data provided from field tests, such as SPT (Standard Penetration Test) and CPT (Cone Penetration Test) tests. This paper reports the results of axial load capacity analysis of drilled shafts at a construction site at Semani, in Fier county, Fier prefecture in Albania. In this case, the axial load capacity analyses are based on the data of 416 SPT tests and 12 CPTU tests, which are carried out in this site construction using 12 boreholes (10 borings of a depth 30.0 m and 2 borings of a depth of 80.0m). The considered foundation widths range from 0.5m to 2.5 m and foundation embedment lengths is fixed at a value of 25m. SPT – based analytical methods from the Japanese practice of design (Building Standard Law of Japan) and CPT – based analytical Eslami and Fellenius methods are used for obtaining axial ultimate load capacity of drilled shafts. The considered drilled shaft (25m long and 0.5m - 2.5m in diameter) is analyzed for the soil conditions of each borehole. The values obtained from sets of calculations are shown in different charts. Then the reported axial load capacity values acquired from SPT and CPTU data are compared and some conclusions are found related to the mentioned methods of calculations.

Keywords: deep foundations, drilled shafts, axial load capacity, ultimate load capacity, allowable load capacity, SPT test, CPTU test

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25 Determination of Soil Loss by Erosion in Different Land Covers Categories and Slope Classes in Bovilla Watershed, Tirana, Albania

Authors: Valmir Baloshi, Fran Gjoka, Nehat Çollaku, Elvin Toromani


As a sediment production mechanism, soil erosion is the main environmental threat to the Bovilla watershed, including the decline of water quality of the Bovilla reservoir that provides drinking water to Tirana city (the capital of Albania). Therefore, an experiment with 25 erosion plots for soil erosion monitoring has been set up since June 2017. The aim was to determine the soil loss on plot and watershed scale in Bovilla watershed (Tirana region) for implementation of soil and water protection measures or payments for ecosystem services (PES) programs. The results of erosion monitoring for the period June 2017 - May 2018 showed that the highest values of surface runoff were noted in bare land of 38829.91 liters on slope of 74% and the lowest values in forest land of 12840.6 liters on slope of 64% while the highest values of soil loss were found in bare land of 595.15 t/ha on slope of 62% and lowest values in forest land of 18.99 t/ha on slope of 64%. These values are much higher than the average rate of soil loss in the European Union (2.46 ton/ha/year). In the same sloping class, the soil loss was reduced from orchard or bare land to the forest land, and in the same category of land use, the soil loss increased with increasing land slope. It is necessary to conduct chemical analyses of sediments to determine the amount of chemical elements leached out of the soil and end up in the reservoir of Bovilla. It is concluded that PES programs should be implemented for rehabilitation of sub-watersheds Ranxe, Vilez and Zall-Bastar of the Bovilla watershed with valuable conservation practices.

Keywords: ANOVA, Bovilla, land cover, slope, soil loss, watershed management

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24 Micropropagation and in vitro Conservation via Slow Growth Techniques of Prunus webbii (Spach) Vierh: An Endangered Plant Species in Albania

Authors: Valbona Sota, Efigjeni Kongjika


Wild almond is a woody species, which is difficult to propagate either generatively by seed or by vegetative methods (grafting or cuttings) and also considered as Endangered (EN) in Albania based on IUCN criteria. As a wild relative of cultivated fruit trees, this species represents a source of genetic variability and can be very important in breeding programs and cultivation. For this reason, it would be of interest to use an effective method of in vitro mid-term conservation, which involves strategies to slow plant growth through physicochemical alterations of in vitro growth conditions. Multiplication of wild almond was carried out using zygotic embryos, as primary explants, with the purpose to develop a successful propagation protocol. Results showed that zygotic embryos can proliferate through direct or indirect organogenesis. During subculture, stage was obtained a great number of new plantlets identical to mother plants derived from the zygotic embryos. All in vitro plantlets obtained from subcultures underwent in vitro conservation by minimal growth in low temperature (4ºC) and darkness. The efficiency of this technique was evaluated for 3, 6, and 10 months of conservation period. Maintenance in these conditions reduced micro cuttings growth. Survival and regeneration rates for each period were evaluated and resulted that the maximal time of conservation without subculture on 4ºC was 10 months, but survival and regeneration rates were significantly reduced, specifically 15.6% and 7.6%. An optimal period of conservation in these conditions can be considered the 5-6 months storage, which can lead to 60-50% of survival and regeneration rates. This protocol may be beneficial for mass propagation, mid-term conservation, and for genetic manipulation of wild almond.

Keywords: micropropagation, minimal growth, storage, wild almond

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23 Between Hope and Despair: Exploring Experiences and Belonging of Return Migrants and Their Children in Albania

Authors: Elida Cena


Return migration is receiving increased attention as the phenomenon challenges assumptions of natural ‘homecomings’. This talk outlines preliminary findings from an ongoing PhD study which explores return migration of Albanian migrants (aged 30-50 years) and their children (aged 7-18 years). Participants (n=51) were purposively recruited from two Albanian cities with divergent social and economic conditions, and the majority had returned from Greece following the recent economic downturn in that country. Qualitative data were collected through in-depth interviews with respondents aged 13 years and above, and were augmented with focus groups and family case studies. Data collection for case studies was aided by photo elicitation, interviews and participatory techniques (drawing) were employed for children aged 7-12 years. Through a multidisciplinary perspective, findings will uncover experiences of migrants and children upon return, the quest to identify with the originating country and create a sense of belongingness. Narrative analysis reveals that the abrupt return was associated with ambivalent feelings and disillusionment about their (re)settlement for both younger and older participants. Faced with unexpected realities and lack of opportunities, particularly for the children of migrants, Albania is viewed as a ‘transit country’, a temporary solution to escape the crisis in the destination country and move to a more developed western country. Adult return migrants articulate lack of employment and insecurity for the future. Apart from school difficulties, children experience isolation and social exclusion, marked by stigmatized labelling from other peers which exacerbates their belonging. Such mobilities have had deeper effects in complicating family relationships as influenced by many disintegration factors. Feelings of alienation and being emigrant for the second time were common in participants' accounts. Findings concerning the difficulties of individuals (re)connecting with their ethnic background and the impact on their identities are discussed in relation to the literature on return migration and identification.

Keywords: return migration, belonging, identity, disintegration, integration

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22 An Analytical View of Albanian and French Legislation on Access to Health Care Benefits

Authors: Oljana Hoxhaj


The integration process of Albania into the European family carries many difficulties. In this context, the Albanian legislator is inclined to implement in the domestic legal framework models which have been successful in other countries. Our paper aims to present an analytical and comparative approach to the health system in Albania and France, mainly focusing on citizen’s access to these services. Different standards and cultures between states, in the context of an approximate model, will be the first challenge of our paper. Over the last few years, the Albanian government has undertaken concrete reforms in this sector, aiming to transform the vision on which the previous health system was structured. In this perspective, the state fulfills not only an obligation to its citizens, but also consolidates progressive steps toward alignment with European Union standards. The necessity to undertake a genuine reform in this area has come as an exigency of society, which has permanently identified problems within this sector, considering it ineffective, out of standards, and corrupt. The inclusion of health services on the Albanian government agenda reflects its will in the function of good governance, transparency, and broadening access to the provision of quality health services in the public and private sectors. The success of any initiative in the health system consists of giving priority to patient needs. Another objective that should be in the state's consideration is to create the premise to provide a comprehensive process on whose foundations partnership and broader co-operation with beneficiary entities are established in any decision-making that is directly related to their interests. Some other important and widespread impacts on the effective realization of citizens' access to the healthcare system coincide with the construction of appropriate infrastructure, increasing the professionalism and qualification of medical staff, and the allocation of a higher budget. France has one of the most effective healthcare models in Europe. That is why we have chosen to analyze this country, aiming to highlight the advantages of this system, as well as the commitment of the French state to drafting effective health policies. In the framework of the process of harmonization of the Albanian legislation with that of the European Union, through our work, we aim to identify the space to implement the whole of these legislative innovations in the Albanian legislation.

Keywords: effective service, harmonization level, innovation, reform

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21 A Practical Approach Towards Disinfection Challenges in Sterile Manufacturing Area

Authors: Doris Lacej, Eni Bushi


Cleaning and disinfection procedures are essential for maintaining the cleanliness status of the pharmaceutical manufacturing environment particularly of the cleanrooms and sterile unit area. The Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) Annex 1 recommendation highly requires the implementation of the standard and validated cleaning and disinfection protocols. However, environmental monitoring has shown that even a validated cleaning method with certified agents may result in the presence of atypical microorganisms’ colony that exceeds GMP limits for a specific cleanroom area. In response to this issue, this case study aims to arrive at the root cause of the microbial contamination observed in the sterile production environment in Profarma pharmaceutical industry in Albania through applying a problem-solving practical approach that ensures the appropriate sterility grade. The guidelines and literature emphasize the importance of several factors in the prevention of possible microbial contamination occurring in cleanrooms, grade A and C. These factors are integrated into a practical framework, to identify the root cause of the presence of Aspergillus Niger colony in the sterile production environment in Profarma pharmaceutical industry in Albania. In addition, the application of a semi-automatic disinfecting system such as H2O2 FOG into sterile grade A and grade C cleanrooms has been an effective solution in eliminating the atypical colony of Aspergillus Niger. Selecting the appropriate detergents and disinfectants at the right concentration, frequency, and combination; the presence of updated and standardized guidelines for cleaning and disinfection as well as continuous training of operators on these practices in accordance with the updated GMP guidelines are some of the identified factors that influence the success of achieving sterility grade. However, to ensure environmental sustainability it is important to be prepared for identifying the source of contamination and making the appropriate decision. The proposed case-based practical approach may help pharmaceutical companies to achieve sterile production and cleanliness environmental sustainability in challenging situations. Apart from the integration of valid agents and standardized cleaning and disinfection protocols according to GMP Annex 1, pharmaceutical companies must be careful and investigate the source and all the steps that can influence the results of an abnormal situation. Subsequently apart from identifying the root cause it is important to solve the problem with a successful alternative approach.

Keywords: cleanrooms, disinfectants, environmental monitoring, GMP Annex 1

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20 The Impact of Household Income on Students' Financial Literacy

Authors: Dorjana Nano


Financial literacy has become on focus of many research studies. Family household is found to influence students’ financial literacy. The purpose of this study is to explore whether financial literacy of Albanian students is associated with their family household. The main objectives of this research are: i) firstly, to evaluate how financial literate are Albanian university students; ii) secondly, to examine whether the financial literacy differs based on the level of students family income; and iii) finally, to draw some conclusions and recommendations in order to improve student’s financial literacy. An instrument, comprised of personal finance and personal characteristics is administered to 637 students in Albania. The constituency of the survey is tested based on the dimension reduction and factor analyzing techniques. The One Way Welch ANOVA and multiple comparison techniques are utilized to analyze the data. The results indicate that student’s financial literacy is influenced by their family income.

Keywords: financial literacy, household income, smart decisions, university students

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19 Religion and the Constitutional Regulation

Authors: Valbona Metaj


The relationship between the state and the religion is different based on the fact that how powerful is the religion faith in a state and of the influences that affected the views of the constitution drafters according to the constitutional system they were based to draft their constitution. This paper aims at providing, through a comparative methodology, how it is regulated by the constitution the relationship between the state and the religion. The object of this study are the constitutions of Italy as a nation with catholic religious tradition, Greece as a nation with orthodox religion tradition, and Turkey as a nation which represents Muslim religion, while Albania as a nation known for its religious plurality. In particular, the analysis will be focused on the secular or religious principle provided in the constitution of each respective state. This comparative overview intends to discern which of the states analyzed is more tolerant and fully respects the freedom of religion. It results that most of the states subject of this study, despite their religious tradition have chosen the secular principle in their constitutions, but the religious freedom is differently guaranteed.

Keywords: constitution, religion, religious freedom, secular

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18 On the Road towards Effective Administrative Justice in Macedonia, Albania and Kosovo: Common Challenges and Problems

Authors: Arlinda Memetaj


A sound system of administrative justice represents a vital element of democratic governance. The proper control of public administration consists not only of a sound civil service framework and legislative oversight, but empowerment of the public and courts to hold public officials accountable for their decision-making through the application of fair administrative procedural rules and the use of appropriate administrative appeals processes and judicial review. The establishment of both effective public administration and administrative justice system has been for a long period of time among the most ‘important and urgent’ final strategic objectives of almost any country in the Balkans region, including Macedonia, Albania and Kosovo. Closely related to this is their common strategic goal to enter the membership in the European Union, which requires fulfilling of many criteria and standards as incorporated in EU acquis communautaire. The latter is presently done with the framework of the Stabilization and Association Agreement which each of these countries has concluded with the EU accordingly. To above aims, each of the three countries has so far adopted a huge series of legislative and strategic documents related to any aspects of their individual administrative justice system. ‘Changes and reforms’ in this field have been thus the most frequent terms being used in any of these countries. The three countries have already established their own national administrative judiciary, while permanently amending their laws on the general administrative procedure introducing thereby considerable innovations concerned. National administrative courts are expected to have crucial important role within the broader judiciary systems-related reforms of these countries; they are designed to check the legality of decisions of the state administration with the aim to guarantee an effective protection of human rights and legitimate interests of private persons through a regular, conform, fast and reasonable judicial administrative process. Further improvements in this field are presently an integral crucial part of all the relevant national strategic documents including the ones on judiciary reform and public administration reform, as adopted by each of the three countries; those strategic documents are designed among others to provide effective protection of their citizens` rights` of administrative justice. On the basis of the later, the paper finally is aimed at highlighting selective common challenges and problems of the three countries on their European road, while claiming (among others) that the current status quo situation in each of them may be overcome only if there is a proper implementation of the administrative courts decisions and a far stricter international monitoring process thereof. A new approach and strong political commitment from the highest political leadership is thus absolutely needed to ensure the principles of transparency, accountability and merit in public administration. The main methods used in this paper include the analytical and comparative ones due to the very character of the paper itself.

Keywords: administrative courts , administrative justice, administrative procedure, benefit, effective administrative justice, human rights, implementation, monitoring, reform

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17 Good Supply Chain Management A Factor for Business Performance

Authors: Irina Canco, Amela Malaj


It is evident that there exists a relationship between supply chain management and business performance. Surveys have showed that in many cases the manager's beliefs and expectations on supply chain management do not match the reality of the business. In this context, the study of supply chain issues is of particular importance and interest considering specifically the current period. The economic problems of this period, are present in Albania as well. The complexity of the supply chain focuses on order fulfilment. Therefore, in this paper, attention will be paid to the impact of supply chain management on business performance. The objective of the paper is to find a relationship between the good supply chain management and business performance. This research is based on the results of surveys referring to the experience of successful businesses on issues related to sustainable supply chain management and its synchronization with the provision of products and services required by the final customers. This study clearly evidenced the impact of the speed of meeting customer requirements on AMAZONA performance. This was also confirmed mathematically through one of the decision criteria in conditions of uncertainty—Laplace criterion.

Keywords: supply chain management, AMAZONA, business performance, Laplace criteria

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16 Health Reforms in Central and Eastern European Countries: Results, Dynamics, and Outcomes Measure

Authors: Piotr Romaniuk, Krzysztof Kaczmarek, Adam Szromek


Background: A number of approaches to assess the performance of health system have been proposed so far. Nonetheless, they lack a consensus regarding the key components of assessment procedure and criteria of evaluation. The WHO and OECD have developed methods of assessing health system to counteract the underlying issues, but they are not free of controversies and did not manage to produce a commonly accepted consensus. The aim of the study: On the basis of WHO and OECD approaches we decided to develop own methodology to assess the performance of health systems in Central and Eastern European countries. We have applied the method to compare the effects of health systems reforms in 20 countries of the region, in order to evaluate the dynamic of changes in terms of health system outcomes.Methods: Data was collected from a 25-year time period after the fall of communism, subsetted into different post-reform stages. Datasets collected from individual countries underwent one-, two- or multi-dimensional statistical analyses, and the Synthetic Measure of health system Outcomes (SMO) was calculated, on the basis of the method of zeroed unitarization. A map of dynamics of changes over time across the region was constructed. Results: When making a comparative analysis of the tested group in terms of the average SMO value throughout the analyzed period, we noticed some differences, although the gaps between individual countries were small. The countries with the highest SMO were the Czech Republic, Estonia, Poland, Hungary and Slovenia, while the lowest was in Ukraine, Russia, Moldova, Georgia, Albania, and Armenia. Countries differ in terms of the range of SMO value changes throughout the analyzed period. The dynamics of change is high in the case of Estonia and Latvia, moderate in the case of Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic, Croatia, Russia and Moldova, and small when it comes to Belarus, Ukraine, Macedonia, Lithuania, and Georgia. This information reveals fluctuation dynamics of the measured value in time, yet it does not necessarily mean that in such a dynamic range an improvement appears in a given country. In reality, some of the countries moved from on the scale with different effects. Albania decreased the level of health system outcomes while Armenia and Georgia made progress, but lost distance to leaders in the region. On the other hand, Latvia and Estonia showed the most dynamic progress in improving the outcomes. Conclusions: Countries that have decided to implement comprehensive health reform have achieved a positive result in terms of further improvements in health system efficiency levels. Besides, a higher level of efficiency during the initial transition period generally positively determined the subsequent value of the efficiency index value, but not the dynamics of change. The paths of health system outcomes improvement are highly diverse between different countries. The instrument we propose constitutes a useful tool to evaluate the effectiveness of reform processes in post-communist countries, but more studies are needed to identify factors that may determine results obtained by individual countries, as well as to eliminate the limitations of methodology we applied.

Keywords: health system outcomes, health reforms, health system assessment, health system evaluation

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15 The Benefits of Mountain Climbing in the Physical Well-Being of Young People

Authors: Zylfi Shehu, Rozeta Shatku


The aim of this study is the identification of the goods and the consequences it brings up the mountain climbing to the youth, how mountain climbing influences in physical activity and the health of young people. Taken to study 37 young people aged 18-30 years, 25 males and 12 females. The selection was made at random and voluntary. Subjects were not professionals but amateurs climbing in the mountain. They were informed and instructed for the test to be carried out. The ascent was made in January 2016 in the Mount of Gjallica in Kukës, Albania, the height of the mountain is 2489 m above sea level. Backpack for each subject weighing 32 kg. Time of ascent, attitude and descent was 6 days. In 22 males, 2 of them did not afford the ascent on the first day and went back. Of the 12 women, 5 of them withdrew on the first day. During the descent on day six, 20 males 7 of them had minor injuries, three with serious injuries. While a total of 7 women, 4 of them had minor injuries and one with serious injuries. Most of the men and women who deal with physical activity throughout life faced the light and were not injured, and the rest that were not dealt with physical activity were more injured. Lack of experience and knowledge was one of the causes of injuries. The subjects had anxiety all the time, uncertainty and fear of avalanches of snow and difficult terrain.

Keywords: climbing, physical activity, young people

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14 Internet Media and Public: A Report of a Mutual Deception

Authors: Safet Zejnullahu


The relationship between the public and media is more than meaningful. It has been a topic of discussion as early as the birth of the media. The 'magic box' called radio adapted and transformed by following the tastes and interests of the public. Television went a step further by complementing the magic sound of the magic box with photos/images. Newspapers informed the reader, but from time to time, they also provided them the room to express their opinions. The media-public report in the traditional media is a report of a mutual respect. Today, the report between media and public should be well defined. The goal of this paper is to analyze the history of the media-public relationship, with a special emphasis on the analysis of this relationship in media of the internet time. This paper seeks to prove that the internet media has created a completely new and thus far unknown relationship between the media and public. Through research, which includes an analysis of the media in Kosovo and Albania, it will be proven that the media of the internet time has elevated this relationship to a new level, with many unknowns in terms of the functioning and role of the media. The results and findings of the paper are related to the conclusion that from the relationship in which the roles of the media and the public are known, nowadays, this relationship goes beyond the known principle and rules and is more defined as a relationship of mutual deception. The media goes beyond the line of the humility of the public, and the public seeks to direct the content of the media. The media-public report in the internet-media is a report based on mutual attempt for fraud.

Keywords: media, public, report, humility, direction

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