Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 32

Search results for: Darrol Stanley

32 Entropy Risk Factor Model of Exchange Rate Prediction

Authors: Darrol Stanley, Levan Efremidze, Jannie Rossouw

Abstract:

We investigate the predictability of the USD/ZAR (South African Rand) exchange rate with sample entropy analytics for the period of 2004-2015. We calculate sample entropy based on the daily data of the exchange rate and conduct empirical implementation of several market timing rules based on these entropy signals. The dynamic investment portfolio based on entropy signals produces better risk adjusted performance than a buy and hold strategy. The returns are estimated on the portfolio values in U.S. dollars. These results are preliminary and do not yet account for reasonable transactions costs, although these are very small in currency markets.

Keywords: currency trading, entropy, market timing, risk factor model

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31 Another Justice: Litigation Masters in Chinese Legal Story

Authors: Lung-Lung Hu

Abstract:

Ronald Dworkin offered a legal theory of ‘chain enterprise’ that all the judges in legal history altogether create a ‘law’ aiming a specific purpose. Those judges are like co-writers of a chain-story who not only create freely but also are constrained by the story made by the judges before them. The law created by Chinese traditional judges is another case, they, compared with the judges mentioned by Ronald Dworkin, have relatively narrower space of making a legal sentence according to their own discretions because the statutes in Chinese traditional law at the very beginning have been designed as panel code that leaves small room to judge’s discretion. Furthermore, because law is a representative of the authority of the government, i.e. the emperor, any misjudges and misuses deviated from the law will be considered as a challenge to the supreme power. However, different from judges as the defenders of law, Chinese litigation masters who want to win legal cases have to be offenders challenging the verdict that does not favor his or his client’s interest. Besides, litigation master as an illegal or non-authorized profession does not belong to any legal system, therefore, they are relatively freer to ‘create’ the law. According to Stanley Fish’s articles that question Ronald Dworkin and Owen Fiss’ ideas about law, he construes that, since law is made of language, law is open to interpretations that cannot be constrained by any rules or any particular legal purposes. Stanley Fish’s idea can also be applied on the analysis about the stories of Chinese litigation masters in traditional Chinese literature. These Chinese litigation masters’ legal opinions in the so-called chain enterprise are like an unexpected episode that tries to revise the fixed story told by law. Although they are not welcome to the officials and also to the society, their existence is still a phenomenon representing another version of justice different from the official’s and can be seen as a de-structural power to the government. Hence, in this present paper the language and strategy applied by Chinese litigation masters in Chinese legal stories will be analysed to see how they refute made legal judgments and challenge the official standard of justice.

Keywords: Chinese legal stories, interdisciplinary, litigation master, post-structuralism

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30 Calendar Anomalies in Islamic Frontier Markets

Authors: Aslam Faheem, Hunjra Ahmed Imran, Tayachi Tahar, Verhoeven Peter, Tariq Yasir

Abstract:

We investigate the evidence of three risk-adjusted calendar anomalies in eight frontier markets. Our sample consists of the daily closing prices of their stock indices for the period of January 2006 to September 2019. We categorize the data with respect to day-of-the-week, Lunar calendar and Islamic calendar. Using Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) eight Markets Index as our proxy of the market portfolio, most of the frontier markets tested exhibit calendar seasonality. We confirm that systematic risk varies with respect to day-of-the-week, Lunar months and Islamic months. After consideration of time-varying risk and applying Bonferroni correction, few frontier markets exhibit profitable investment opportunities from calendar return anomalies for active investment managers.

Keywords: asset pricing, frontier markets, market efficiency, Islamic calendar effects, Islamic stock markets

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29 A t-SNE and UMAP Based Neural Network Image Classification Algorithm

Authors: Shelby Simpson, William Stanley, Namir Naba, Xiaodi Wang

Abstract:

Both t-SNE and UMAP are brand new state of art tools to predominantly preserve the local structure that is to group neighboring data points together, which indeed provides a very informative visualization of heterogeneity in our data. In this research, we develop a t-SNE and UMAP base neural network image classification algorithm to embed the original dataset to a corresponding low dimensional dataset as a preprocessing step, then use this embedded database as input to our specially designed neural network classifier for image classification. We use the fashion MNIST data set, which is a labeled data set of images of clothing objects in our experiments. t-SNE and UMAP are used for dimensionality reduction of the data set and thus produce low dimensional embeddings. Furthermore, we use the embeddings from t-SNE and UMAP to feed into two neural networks. The accuracy of the models from the two neural networks is then compared to a dense neural network that does not use embedding as an input to show which model can classify the images of clothing objects more accurately.

Keywords: t-SNE, UMAP, fashion MNIST, neural networks

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28 The Role of Entrepreneurship Education in Enhancing Self-Employment: Students' Perspective

Authors: Stanley Fore, Gaetan Ngabonziza

Abstract:

In spite of the need for skilled labour in South Africa, tertiary education graduates are increasingly faced with unemployment, which poses a serious obstacle to the economic growth of the country. This paper is an outcome of the study that investigated students’ perceptions on the role of entrepreneurship education in enhancing graduates’ self-employment. The study was descriptive in nature and used a survey questionnaire to answer questions pertaining to the extent to which entrepreneurship education is important in enhancing self-employment endeavours. Collected data were analysed using of the statistical software for social science (SPSS) for descriptive statistics in the form of tables and charts. The study found that entrepreneurship education is critical in providing knowledge and skills that are required to succeed in self-employment. As one module of entrepreneurship does not ensure self-employment orientation or more positive expectations about entrepreneurial abilities and careers, this study suggests that students, irrespective of their field of study, should be given entrepreneurship modules in every academic year. This will help in reminding them that their success does not solely rely on their ability to find a better-paying employment but also on their ability to employ themselves.

Keywords: entrepreneurship, education, self-employment, students

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27 Effective Retirement Planning: Exploring Financial Planning Behavior in Malaysia

Authors: Stanley Yap Peng Lok, Chong Wei Ying, Leow Hon Wei, Fatemeh Kimiyaghalam

Abstract:

Purpose: This paper examines how people treat on the importance of financial planning for their retirement. There is lack of standard instrument that enable us to access the retirement planning behavior. This paper studies the reliability and validity of a proposed scale for accessing this behavior. Design/methodology/approach: The Retirement Planning Behavior scale (RPB) is developed from the results of reviewing different papers on this topic. A total of 900 Malaysians from the age of 18 and above are used as the sample. Findings: Our results show, firstly, the RPB meets all criteria from the instrument reliability and validity which based on the theory of planned behavior. Second, our findings propose two components for this RPB scale; attitude toward planning for retirement and intention towards retirement planning behavior. Practical implication: An effective retirement planning achieves financial independence after the retirement. Our findings have important implications for the scope and significance of the retirement planning behavior measurement, especially for retirees. Originality/value: This study proposes a new approach to cater consumers’ needs for retirement planning. Therefore, consumers are able to achieve financial independence in their retirement age.

Keywords: retirement planning behavior (RPB) scale, reliability, validity, retirement planning, financial independence

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26 The Impact of Financial Literacy to the Retirement Planning on Malaysian Household

Authors: Stanley Yap, Patrick Kee Peng Kong, Chong Wei Ying, Leow Hon Wei

Abstract:

Purpose: This study examines the comprehensive household retirement planning based on the level of financial literacy in Malaysia. Sufficient financial literacy is essential to make financial decision on Malaysian household retirement planning. Design/Methodology/Approach: Numerous measurements consist of present value of total retirement fund needed, future value of the expenses and inflation-adjusted interest rate are used in this paper. Therefore, we are able to identify the retirement gap that needs to be considered immediately. Findings: Our results show, firstly, adequate financial literacy is vital to achieve long term household retirement planning. Secondly, there is no retirement gap where the future value of the existing financial assets is greater than the lump sum needs during retirement phase. Thirdly, financial assets should be prepared in early age to accumulate substantial funding to support household retirement life. Practical Implications: The outcomes benefit to retiree and working adults. It highlights the importance of financial literacy to retirement planning. It is also a milestone for Malaysian to achieve developed country if Malaysian has sufficient retirement funding. Originality/Value: There is currently lack of in-depth research on financial literacy related to household retirement planning. Further, the paper also focusses on financial literacy, as a means to assist those in funding retirement resources, in order to fulfil the retirement gap.

Keywords: financial literacy, retirement planning, retirement resources, retirement gap, Malaysian household

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25 Analysing Waste Management Options in the Printing Industry: Case of a South African Company

Authors: Stanley Fore

Abstract:

The case study company is one of the leading newsprint companies in South Africa. The company has achieved this status through operational expansion, diversification and investing in cutting-edge technology. They have a reputation for the highest quality and personalised service that transcends borders and industries. The company offers a wide variety of small and large scales printing services. The company is faced with the challenge of significant waste production during normal operations. The company generates 1200 kg of plastic waste and 60 – 70 tonnes of paper waste per month. The company operates a waste management process currently, whereby waste paper is sold, at low cost, to recycling firms for further processing. Having considered the quantity of waste being generated, the company has embarked on a venture to find a more profitable solution to its current waste production. As waste management and recycling is not the company’s core business, the aim of the venture is to implement a secondary profitable waste process business. The venture will be expedited as a strategic project. This research aims to estimate the financial feasibility of a selected solution as well as the impact of non-financial considerations thereof. The financial feasibility is analysed using metrics such as Payback period; internal rate of return and net present value.

Keywords: waste, printing industry, up-cycling, management

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24 Financial Planning Framework: A Perspective of Wealth Accumulation and Retirement Planning

Authors: Stanley Yap, Mahadevan Supramaniam, Chong Wei Ying, Fatemeh Kimiyaghalam

Abstract:

Purpose: The paper shows the framework of financial planning in a different paradigm. It highlights the results from a focus group on retirement planning in the aspect of financial literacy and wealth accumulation in Malaysia. Design/methodology/approach: A focus group consisted of thirty individuals and divided into six different clusters amongst 25 to 55 years old. The selection of focus group members is pertaining to retirement planning behavior and saving profile from the different level of educations. Findings: Our results show, firstly, the focus group reflects individual capacity on saving attitude, financial literacy and awareness towards financial products. Secondly, availability, accessibility and affordability which are the significant factors that influence saving attitude, financial literacy and awareness on personal retirement planning behavior. Practical implications: The participants express the concerns of retirement planning during their golden years and the current financial products in the Malaysian financial market. Originality/value: This study is a different approach that recognizes the needs of the consumers in the context of retirement planning and wealth accumulation. Therefore, customers should obtain financial services and products from financial providers to achieve financial independence.

Keywords: retirement planning, wealth accumulation, financial literacy, focus group, saving attitude, availability, accessibility, affordability

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23 Effect of Environmental Conditions on E. Coli o157:h7 Atcc 43888 and L. Monocytogenes Atcc 7644 Cell Surface Hydrophobicity, Motility and Cell Attachment on Food-Contact Surfaces

Authors: Stanley Dula, Oluwatosini A. Ijabadeniyi

Abstract:

Biofilm formation is a major source of materials and foodstuffs contamination, contributing to occurrence of pathogenic and spoilage microbes in food processing resulting in food spoilage, transmission of diseases and significant food hygiene and safety issues. This study elucidates biofilm formation of E. coli O157:H7 and L. monocytogenes ATCC 7644 grown under food related environmental stress conditions of varying pH (5.0;7.0; and 8.5) and temperature (15, 25 and 37 ℃). Both strains showed confluent biofilm formation at 25 ℃ and 37 ℃, at pH 8.5 after 5 days. E. coli showed curli fimbriae production at various temperatures, while L. monocytogenes did not show pronounced expression. Swarm, swimming and twitching plate assays were used to determine strain motilities. Characterization of cell hydrophobicity was done using the microbial adhesion to hydrocarbons (MATH) assay using n-hexadecane. Both strains showed hydrophilic characteristics as they fell within a < 20 % interval. FT-IR revealed COOH at 1622 cm-1, and a strong absorption band at 3650 cm-1 – 3200 cm-1 indicating the presence of both -OH and -NH groups. Both strains were hydrophilic and could form biofilm at different combinations of temperature and pH. EPS produced in both species proved to be an acidic hetero-polysaccharide.

Keywords: biofilm, pathogens, hydrophobicity, motility

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22 Juvenile Justice in Maryland: The Evidence Based Approach to Youth with History of Victimization and Trauma

Authors: Gabriela Wasileski, Debra L. Stanley

Abstract:

Maryland efforts to decrease the juvenile criminality and recidivism shifts towards evidence based sentencing. While in theory the evidence based sentencing has an impact on the reduction of juvenile delinquency and drug abuse; the assessment of juveniles’ risk and needs usually lacks crucial information about juvenile’s prior victimization. The Maryland Comprehensive Assessment and Service Planning (MCASP) Initiative is the primary tool for developing and delivering a treatment service plan for juveniles at risk. Even though it consists of evidence-based screening and assessment instruments very little is currently known regarding the effectiveness and the impact of the assessment in general. In keeping with Maryland’s priority to develop successful evidence-based recidivism reduction programs, this study examined results of assessments based on MCASP using a representative sample of the juveniles at risk and their assessment results. Specifically, it examined: (1) the results of the assessments in an electronic database (2) areas of need that are more frequent among delinquent youth in a system/agency, (3) the overall progress of youth in an agency’s care (4) the impact of child victimization and trauma experiences reported in the assessment. The project will identify challenges regarding the use of MCASP in Maryland, and will provide a knowledge base to support future research and practices.

Keywords: Juvenile Justice, assessment of risk and need, victimization and crime, recidivism

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21 Narrative Study to Resilience and Adversity's Response

Authors: Yun Hang Stanley Cheung

Abstract:

In recent years, many educators and entrepreneurs have often suggested that students’ and workers’ ability of the adversity response is very important, it would affect problem-solving strategies and ultimate success in their career or life. The meaning of resilience is discussed as the process of bouncing back and the ability to adapt well in adversity’s response, being resilient does not mean to live without any stress and difficulty, but to grow and thrive under pressure. The purpose of this study is to describe the process of resilience and adversity’s response. The use of the narrative inquiry aims for understanding the experiential process of adversity response, and the problem-solving strategies (such as emotion control, motivation, decisions making process), as well as making the experience become life story, which may be evaluated by its teller and its listeners. The narrative study describes the researcher’s self-experience of adversity’s response to the recovery of the seriously burnt injury from a hill fire at his 12 years old, as well as the adversities and obstacles related to the tragedy after the physical recovery. Sense-Making Theory and McCormack’s Lenses were used for constructive perspective and data analyzing. To conclude, this study has described the life story of fighting the adversities, also, those narratives come out some suggestions, which point out positive thinking is necessary to build up resilience and the ability of immediate adversity response. Also, some problem-solving strategies toward adversities are discussed, which are helpful for resilience education for youth and young adult.

Keywords: adversity response, life story, narrative inquiry, resilience

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20 The Mineral and Petroleum Sectors of Papua New Guinea: An Overview

Authors: James Wapyer, Simon A. Kawagle

Abstract:

The current downturn in the metal and oil prices has significantly affected the mineral and petroleum sectors of Papua New Guinea. The sectors have not grown substantially in the last three years compared to previous years. Resources of several projects have not been proved up as well as feasibility studies not undertaken on advanced projects. In the 2012-2015 periods, however, development licences for four projects have been granted - the Solwara-1 project in the Manus Basin, the Woodlark project, the Crater Mountains project and the Stanley gas-condensate project. There has been some progress on three advanced projects – Frieda River copper-gold porphyry, Mount Kare gold, and the Wafi-Golpu projects. The oilfields are small by world standard but have been high rates of production. The developments of liquefied natural gas projects are progressing well and the first LNG project with ExxonMobil and partners shipped its first cargo in May 2014, the second with Total and partners involving Elk-Antelope gas-condensate fields is in its development stage, and the third with Horizon Oil and partners involving gas fields in the western Papuan basin is in the planning stage. Significantly, in the years 2012-2015, the country has exported liquefied natural gas, nickel, cobalt and chromium, and has granted exploration licences for iron-sands and coal measures for the first time.

Keywords: exploration, mineral, Papua New Guinea, petroleum

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19 Modeling of Age Hardening Process Using Adaptive Neuro-Fuzzy Inference System: Results from Aluminum Alloy A356/Cow Horn Particulate Composite

Authors: Chidozie C. Nwobi-Okoye, Basil Q. Ochieze, Stanley Okiy

Abstract:

This research reports on the modeling of age hardening process using adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS). The age hardening output (Hardness) was predicted using ANFIS. The input parameters were ageing time, temperature and percentage composition of cow horn particles (CHp%). The results show the correlation coefficient (R) of the predicted hardness values versus the measured values was of 0.9985. Subsequently, values outside the experimental data points were predicted. When the temperature was kept constant, and other input parameters were varied, the average relative error of the predicted values was 0.0931%. When the temperature was varied, and other input parameters kept constant, the average relative error of the hardness values predictions was 80%. The results show that ANFIS with coarse experimental data points for learning is not very effective in predicting process outputs in the age hardening operation of A356 alloy/CHp particulate composite. The fine experimental data requirements by ANFIS make it more expensive in modeling and optimization of age hardening operations of A356 alloy/CHp particulate composite.

Keywords: adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS), age hardening, aluminum alloy, metal matrix composite

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18 Effective Financial Planning: A Study of Comprehensive Retirement Planning for Financial Independence

Authors: Stanley Yap, Chong Wei Ying, Leow Hon Wei

Abstract:

Purpose: In Malaysia, an effective financial planning is vital to accumulate wealth and financial independence. However, retirees are required to resume working due to insufficient pension fund. This study examines how the financial decision in retirement planning is being made based on the net worth from the household. Design/methodology/approach: This study uses financial data from a married working couple with children to evaluate their composition of financial position. Numerous financial methods are made pertaining to net worth analysis, insurance needs analysis, investment portfolio rebalancing, estate planning, education planning and retirement planning to enhance the financial decision. Findings: Our results show, firstly, financial planning is essential to achieve financial independence; secondly, insurance needs, education and retirement funding are the most significant for household. Thirdly, current resources are critical to maintain family lifestyle after retirement, emergency funds for critical illness, and the long term children education funding. Practical implications: Refer to the findings, sufficient net worth is priority in financial planning. Different suggestions for household include reduction of unnecessary expenses, re-allocate of cash flow, adequate insurance coverage and re-balancing of investment portfolios to accumulate wealth. It is a challenge to obtain financial independence, hence, there is a need to increase the literature on financial planning. Originality/value: To the best of our knowledge, this is the important paper that uses financial information from household to provide solutions to enhance the efficiency of financial planning industry.

Keywords: net worth, financial planning, wealth and financial independence, retirement planning

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17 Evaluation of Critical Rate in Mature Oil Field with Dynamic Oil Rim Fluid Contacts in the Niger Delta

Authors: Stanley Ibuchukwu Onwukwe

Abstract:

Most reservoir in mature oil fields are vulnerable to challenges of water and/or gas coning as the size of their oil column reduces due to long period of oil production. These often result to low oil production and excessive water and/or gas production. Since over 50 years of oil production in the Niger delta, it is apparent that most of the oil fields in the region have reached their mature stages, thereby susceptible to coning tendencies. As a result of these, a good number of wells have been shut-in and abandoned, with significant amount of oil left unproduced. Analysis of the movement of fluid contacts in the reservoir is a significant aspect of reservoir studies and can assist in the management of coning tendencies and production performance of reservoirs in a mature field. This study, therefore, seeks to evaluate the occurrence of coning through the movement of fluid contacts (GOC and OWC) and determine the critical rate for controlling coning tendencies in mature oil field. This study applies the principle of Nodal analysis to calibrate the thin oil column of a reservoir of a mature field, and was graphically evaluated using the Joshi’s equation of critical rate for gas-oil system and oil-water system respectively. A representative Proxy equation was developed and sensitivity analysis carried out to determine the trend of critical rate as the oil column is been depleted. The result shows the trend in the movement of the GOC and OWC, and the critical rate, beyond which will result in excessive water and gas production, resulting to decreasing oil production from the reservoir. This result of this study can be used as a first pass assessment in the development of mature oil field reservoirs anticipated to experience water and/or gas coning during production.

Keywords: coning, fluid contact movement, mature oil field, oil production

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16 Nuclear Mitochondrial Pseudogenes in Anastrepha fraterculus Complex

Authors: Pratibha Srivastava, Ayyamperumal Jeyaprakash, Gary Steck, Jason Stanley, Leroy Whilby

Abstract:

Exotic, invasive tephritid fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) are a major threat to fruit and vegetable industries in the United States. The establishment of pest fruit fly in the agricultural industries and produce severe ecological and economic impacts on agricultural diversification and trade. Detection and identification of these agricultural pests in a timely manner will facilitate the possibility of eradication from newly invaded areas. Identification of larval stages to species level is difficult, but is required to determine pest loads and their pathways into the United States. The aim of this study is the New World genus, Anastrepha which includes pests of major economic importance. Mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase I (COI) gene sequences were amplified from Anastrepha fraterculus specimens collected from South America (Ecuador and Peru). Phylogenetic analysis was performed to characterize the Anastrepha fraterculus complex at a molecular level. During phylogenetics analysis numerous nuclear mitochondrial pseudogenes (numts) were discovered in different specimens. The numts are nonfunctional copies of the mtDNA present in the nucleus and are easily coamplified with the mitochondrial COI gene copy by using conserved universal primers. This is problematic for DNA Barcoding, which attempts to characterize all living organisms by using the COI gene. This study is significant for national quarantine use, as morphological diagnostics to separate larvae of the various members remain poorly developed.

Keywords: tephritid, Anastrepha fraterculus, COI, numts

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15 [Keynote Talk]: Unlocking Transformational Resilience in the Aftermath of a Flood Disaster: A Case Study from Cumbria

Authors: Kate Crinion, Martin Haran, Stanley McGreal, David McIlhatton

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Past research has demonstrated that disasters are continuing to escalate in frequency and magnitude worldwide, representing a key concern for the global community. Understanding and responding to the increasing risk posed by disaster events has become a key concern for disaster managers. An emerging trend within literature, acknowledges the need to move beyond a state of coping and reinstatement of the status quo, towards incremental adaptive change and transformational actions for long-term sustainable development. As such, a growing interest in research concerns the understanding of the change required to address ever increasing and unpredictable disaster events. Capturing transformational capacity and resilience, however is not without its difficulties and explains the dearth in attempts to capture this capacity. Adopting a case study approach, this research seeks to enhance an awareness of transformational resilience by identifying key components and indicators that determine the resilience of flood-affected communities within Cumbria. Grounding and testing a theoretical resilience framework within the case studies, permits the identification of how perceptions of risk influence community resilience actions. Further, it assesses how levels of social capital and connectedness impacts upon the extent of interplay between resources and capacities that drive transformational resilience. Thus, this research seeks to expand the existing body of knowledge by enhancing the awareness of resilience in post-disaster affected communities, by investigating indicators of community capacity building and resilience actions that facilitate transformational resilience during the recovery and reconstruction phase of a flood disaster.

Keywords: capacity building, community, flooding, transformational resilience

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14 Genres as Time Machines: Hong Kong Cinema's Ways of Historicizing

Authors: Chin Pang Lei

Abstract:

Colonized by the UK, handed over to China, and now as a global financial city, Hong Kong’s history is never easy to write under the dominant discourses of colonialism, nationalism and globalization. In this plight, cinema, regarded as Hong Kong’s most representative cultural form, is used for writing, exploring and questioning the local history of the city. In their writing of the past, Hong Kong directors such as Wong Kar-wai, Stanley Kwan and Tsui Hark have demonstrated alternative ways of historicizing Hong Kong. Despite their interests in different periods of time (Wong is obsessed with the 1960s; Kwan is attracted to the 1930s; Tsui often goes back to the early 20th century), all these directors use genres as their time machines to revisit the past. As a popular cultural form, genres always come with a series of ideologies which define our lives and explain the society. Hence, in a changing society, genres change and complicate themselves with different packages of meanings. Genres function as open-ended and corrigible schemata which can contain multiple themes and various meanings. In Hong Kong, genres, often seen as highly commercial and overly market-oriented, are opportunities for alternative history writing and the exploration of local identities. This paper examines how these Hong Kong directors use the popular forms of genres, such as melodrama, martial art and gangster films, to present the past, and how the stories of the fictional characters, such as prostitutes, martial artists and jobless hooligans mobilize imagination of history. These texts show that genre is a crucial platform for Hong Kong’s post-colonial self-writing. Via genres, history in these films is against official and canonical history as well as grand narrative. Genres as time machines articulate a voice for Hong Kong.

Keywords: Hong Kong cinema, genre, historicizing, local history, Wong Kar-Wai

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13 Classifying Affective States in Virtual Reality Environments Using Physiological Signals

Authors: Apostolos Kalatzis, Ashish Teotia, Vishnunarayan Girishan Prabhu, Laura Stanley

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Emotions are functional behaviors influenced by thoughts, stimuli, and other factors that induce neurophysiological changes in the human body. Understanding and classifying emotions are challenging as individuals have varying perceptions of their environments. Therefore, it is crucial that there are publicly available databases and virtual reality (VR) based environments that have been scientifically validated for assessing emotional classification. This study utilized two commercially available VR applications (Guided Meditation VR™ and Richie’s Plank Experience™) to induce acute stress and calm state among participants. Subjective and objective measures were collected to create a validated multimodal dataset and classification scheme for affective state classification. Participants’ subjective measures included the use of the Self-Assessment Manikin, emotional cards and 9 point Visual Analogue Scale for perceived stress, collected using a Virtual Reality Assessment Tool developed by our team. Participants’ objective measures included Electrocardiogram and Respiration data that were collected from 25 participants (15 M, 10 F, Mean = 22.28  4.92). The features extracted from these data included heart rate variability components and respiration rate, both of which were used to train two machine learning models. Subjective responses validated the efficacy of the VR applications in eliciting the two desired affective states; for classifying the affective states, a logistic regression (LR) and a support vector machine (SVM) with a linear kernel algorithm were developed. The LR outperformed the SVM and achieved 93.8%, 96.2%, 93.8% leave one subject out cross-validation accuracy, precision and recall, respectively. The VR assessment tool and data collected in this study are publicly available for other researchers.

Keywords: affective computing, biosignals, machine learning, stress database

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12 Challenges and Success Factors in Introducing Information Systems for Students' Online Registration

Authors: Stanley Fore, Sharon Chipeperekwa

Abstract:

The start of the 2011 academic year in South Africa saw a number of Institutions of Higher Learning introducing online registration for their students. The efficiency and effectiveness of Information Systems are increasingly becoming a necessity and not an option for many organizations. An information system should be able to allow end users to access information easily and navigate with ease. The selected University of Technology (UoT) in this research is one of the largest public institution of higher learning in the Western Cape Province and boasts of an enrolment of more than 30000 students per academic year. An observation was made that, during registration students’ stand in long queues waiting to register or for assistance to register. The system tends to ‘freeze’ whilst students are registering and students are in most cases unfamiliar with the system interface. They constantly have to enquire what to do next when going through online registration process. A mixed method approach will be adopted which comprises of quantitative and qualitative approaches. The study uses constructs of the updated DeLone and McLean IS success model (2003) to analyse and explain the student’s perceptions of the online registration system. The research was undertaken to establish the student’s perceptions of the online registration system. This research seeks to identify and analyse the challenges and success factors of introducing an online registration system whilst highlighting the extent to which this system has been able to solve the numerous problems associated with the manual era. The study will assist management and those responsible for managing the current system to determine how well the system is working or not working to achieve user satisfaction. It will also assist them going forward on what to consider before, during and after implementation of an information system. Respondents will be informed of the objectives of the research, and their consent to participate will be sought. Ethical considerations that will be applied to this study include; informed consent and protection from harm, right to privacy and involvement of the research.

Keywords: online registration, information systems, University of Technology, end-users

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11 Maintenance Performance Measurement Derived Optimization: A Case Study

Authors: James M. Wakiru, Liliane Pintelon, Peter Muchiri, Stanley Mburu

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Maintenance performance measurement (MPM) represents an integrated aspect that considers both operational and maintenance related aspects while evaluating the effectiveness and efficiency of maintenance to ensure assets are working as they should. Three salient issues require to be addressed for an asset-intensive organization to employ an MPM-based framework to optimize maintenance. Firstly, the organization should establish important perfomance metric(s), in this case the maintenance objective(s), which they will be focuss on. The second issue entails aligning the maintenance objective(s) with maintenance optimization. This is achieved by deriving maintenance performance indicators that subsequently form an objective function for the optimization program. Lastly, the objective function is employed in an optimization program to derive maintenance decision support. In this study, we develop a framework that initially identifies the crucial maintenance performance measures, and employs them to derive maintenance decision support. The proposed framework is demonstrated in a case study of a geothermal drilling rig, where the objective function is evaluated utilizing a simulation-based model whose parameters are derived from empirical maintenance data. Availability, reliability and maintenance inventory are depicted as essential objectives requiring further attention. A simulation model is developed mimicking a drilling rig operations and maintenance where the sub-systems are modelled undergoing imperfect maintenance, corrective (CM) and preventive (PM), with the total cost as the primary performance measurement. Moreover, three maintenance spare inventory policies are considered; classical (retaining stocks for a contractual period), vendor-managed inventory with consignment stock and periodic monitoring order-to-stock (s, S) policy. Optimization results infer that the adoption of (s, S) inventory policy, increased PM interval and reduced reliance of CM actions offers improved availability and total costs reduction.

Keywords: maintenance, vendor-managed, decision support, performance, optimization

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10 Stress Hyperglycaemia and Glycaemic Control Post Cardiac Surgery: Relaxed Targets May Be Acceptable

Authors: Nicholas Bayfield, Liam Bibo, Charley Budgeon, Robert Larbalestier, Tom Briffa

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Introduction: Stress hyperglycaemia is common following cardiac surgery. Its optimal management is uncertain and may differ by diabetic status. This study assesses the in-hospital glycaemic management of cardiac surgery patients and associated postoperative outcomes. Methods: A retrospective cohort analysis of all patients undergoing cardiac surgery at Fiona Stanley Hospital from February 2015 to May 2019 was undertaken. Management and outcomes of hyperglycaemia following cardiac surgery were assessed. Follow-up was assessed to 1 year postoperatively. Multivariate regression modelling was utilised. Results: 1050 non-diabetic patients and 689 diabetic patients were included. In the non-diabetic cohort, patients with mild (peak blood sugar level [BSL] < 14.3), transient stress hyperglycaemia managed without insulin were not at an increased risk of wound-related morbidity (P=0.899) or mortality at 1 year (P=0.483). Insulin management was associated with wound-related readmission to hospital (P=0.004) and superficial sternal wound infection (P=0.047). Prolonged or severe stress hyperglycaemia was predictive of hospital re-admission (P=0.050) but not morbidity or mortality (P=0.546). Diabetes mellitus was an independent risk factor 1-year mortality (OR; 1.972 [1.041–3.736], P=0.037), graft harvest site wound infection (OR; 1.810 [1.134–2.889], P=0.013) and wound-related readmission (OR; 1.866 [1.076–3.236], P=0.026). In diabetics, postoperative peak BSL > 13.9mmol/L was predictive of graft harvest site infections (OR; 3.528 [1.724-7.217], P=0.001) and wound-related readmission OR; 3.462 [1.540-7.783], P=0.003) regardless of modality of management. A peak BSL of 10.0-13.9 did not increase the risk of morbidity/mortality compared to a peak BSL of < 10.0 (P=0.557). Diabetics with a peak BSL of 13.9 or less did not have significantly increased morbidity/mortality outcomes compared to non-diabetics (P=0.418). Conclusion: In non-diabetic patients, transient mild stress hyperglycaemia following cardiac surgery does not uniformly require treatment. In diabetic patients, postoperative hyperglycaemia with peak BSL exceeding 13.9mmol/L was associated with wound-related morbidity and hospital readmission following cardiac surgery.

Keywords: cardiac surgery, pulmonary embolism, pulmonary embolectomy, cardiopulmonary bypass

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9 Lovely, Lyrical, Lilting: Kubrick’s Translation of Lolita’s Voice

Authors: Taylor La Carriere

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“What I had madly possessed was not she, but my own creation, another, fanciful Lolita perhaps, more real than Lolita; overlapping, encasing he and having no will, no consciousness indeed, no life of her own,” Vladimir Nabokov writes in his seminal work, Lolita. Throughout Nabokov’s novel, the eponymous character is rendered nonexistent through unreliable narrator Humbert Humbert’s impenetrable narrative, infused with lyrical rationalization. Instead, Lolita is “safely solipsised,” as Humbert muses, solidifying the potential for the erasure of Lolita’s agency and identity. In this literary work, Lolita’s voice is reduced to a nearly invisible presence, only seen through the eyes of her captor. However, in Stanley Kubrick’s film adaptation of Lolita (1962), the “nymphet,” as Nabokov coins, reemerges with a voice of her own, fueled by a lyric impulse, that displaces Humbert’s first-person narration. The lyric, as defined by Catherine Ing, is the voice of the invisible; it is also characterized by performance, the concentrated utterance of individual emotion, and the appearance of spontaneity. The novel’s lyricism is largely in the service of Humbert’s “seductive” voice, while the film reorients it more to Lolita’s subjectivity. Through a close analysis of Kubrick’s cinematic techniques, this paper examines the emergence and translation of Lolita’s voice in contrast with Humbert’s attempts to silence her in Nabokov’s Lolita, hypothesizing that Kubrick translates Lolita’s presence into a visual and aural voice with lyrical attributes, exemplified through the establishment of an altered power dynamic, Sue Lyon’s transformative performance as the titular character, Nelson Riddle and Bob Harris’ musical score, and the omission of Humbert’s first-person point-of-view. In doing so, the film reclaims Lolita’s agency by taking instances of Lolita’s voice in the novel as depicted in the last half of the work and expanding upon them in a way only cinematic depictions could allow. The results of this study suggest that Lolita’s voice in Kubrick’s adaptation functions without disrupting the lyricism present in Nabokov’s source text, materializing through the actions, expressions, and performance of Sue Lyon in the film. This voice, fueled by a lyric impulse of its own, refutes the silence bestowed upon the titular character and enables its ultimate reclamation upon the silver screen.

Keywords: cinema, adaptation, Lolita, lyric voice

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8 Economic Evaluation of an Advanced Bioethanol Manufacturing Technology Using Maize as a Feedstock in South Africa

Authors: Ayanda Ndokwana, Stanley Fore

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Industrial prosperity and rapid expansion of human population in South Africa over the past two decades, have increased the use of conventional fossil fuels such as crude oil, coal and natural gas to meet the country’s energy demands. However, the inevitable depletion of fossil fuel reserves, global volatile oil price and large carbon footprint are some of the crucial reasons the South African Government needs to make a considerable investment in the development of the biofuel industry. In South Africa, this industry is still at the introductory stage with no large scale manufacturing plant that has been commissioned yet. Bioethanol is a potential replacement of gasoline which is a fossil fuel that is used in motor vehicles. Using bioethanol for the transport sector as a source of fuel will help Government to save heavy foreign exchange incurred during importation of oil and create many job opportunities in rural farming. In 2007, the South African Government developed the National Biofuels Industrial Strategy in an effort to make provision for support and attract investment in bioethanol production. However, capital investment in the production of bioethanol on a large scale, depends on the sound economic assessment of the available manufacturing technologies. The aim of this study is to evaluate the profitability of an advanced bioethanol manufacturing technology which uses maize as a feedstock in South Africa. The impact of fiber or bran fractionation in this technology causes it to possess a number of merits such as energy efficiency, low capital expenditure, and profitability compared to a conventional dry-mill bioethanol technology. Quantitative techniques will be used to collect and analyze numerical data from suitable organisations in South Africa. The dependence of three profitability indicators such as the Discounted Payback Period (DPP), Net Present Value (NPV) and Return On Investment (ROI) on plant capacity will be evaluated. Profitability analysis will be done on the following plant capacities: 100 000 ton/year, 150 000 ton/year and 200 000 ton/year. The plant capacity with the shortest Discounted Payback Period, positive Net Present Value and highest Return On Investment implies that a further consideration in terms of capital investment is warranted.

Keywords: bioethanol, economic evaluation, maize, profitability indicators

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7 Close-Reading Works of Art and the Ideal of Naïveté: Elements of an Anti-Cartesian Approach to Humanistic Liberal Education

Authors: Peter Hajnal

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The need to combine serious training in disciplinary/scholarly approaches to problems of general significance with an educational experience that engages students with these very same problems on a personal level is one of the key challenges facing modern liberal education in the West. The typical approach to synthesizing these two goals, one highly abstract, the other elusively practical, proceeds by invoking ideals traditionally associated with Enlightenment and 19th century “humanism”. These ideas are in turn rooted in an approach to reality codified by Cartesianism and the rise of modern science. Articulating this connection of the modern humanist tradition with Cartesianism allows for demonstrating how the central problem of modern liberal education is rooted in the strict separation of knowledge and personal experience inherent in the dualism of Descartes. The question about the shape of contemporary liberal education is, therefore, the same as asking whether an anti-Cartesian version of liberal education is possible at all. Although the formulation of a general answer to this question is a tall order (whether in abstract or practical terms), and might take different forms (nota bene in Eastern and Western contexts), a key inspiration may be provided by a certain shift of attitude towards the Cartesian conception of the relationship of knowledge and experience required by discussion based close-reading of works of visual art. Taking the work of Stanley Cavell as its central inspiration, my paper argues that this shift of attitude in question is best described as a form of “second naïveté”, and that it provides a useful model of conceptualizing in more concrete terms the appeal for such a “second naïveté” expressed in recent writings on the role of various disciplines in organizing learning by philosophers of such diverse backgrounds and interests as Hilary Putnam and Bruno Latour. The adoption of naïveté so identified as an educational ideal may be seen as a key instrument in thinking of the educational context as itself a medium of synthesis of the contemplative and the practical. Moreover, it is helpful in overcoming the bad dilemma of ideological vs. conservative approaches to liberal education, as well as in correcting a certain commonly held false view of the historical roots of liberal education in the Renaissance, which turns out to offer much more of a sui generis approach to practice rather than represent a mere precursor to the Cartesian conception.

Keywords: liberal arts, philosophy, education, Descartes, naivete

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6 Complimentary Allusions: Shawl Scenes in Rossellini, Lean, Fellini, Kubrick, and Bertolucci Films

Authors: Misha Nedeljkovich

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In the film’s famous scene (Roma città aperta-1945), Pina (Anna Magnani) collapses in the street when machined-gunned by a German soldier. Her son Marcello (Vito Annchiarico) tries to revive her. Her death is signaling not closure, but the cycle of life; Marcello saves Francesco with the shawl taken from his mother’s corpse. One pivotal scene in Brief Encounter (1945) occurs in the apartment of Alec’s (Trevor Howard) friend Stephen (Valentine Dyall), when Stephen returns to catch Alec and Laura (Celia Johnson) together alone. David Lean directs this scene using her shawl as a sign of in flagrante delicto. In La Strada (1954), Gelsomina (Giulietta Masina) was waving good bye when her mother sensing impending doom changed her mind and desperately tried to stop her waving back with her shawl: Don’t go my daughter! Your shawl! Your shawl! Gelsomina refuses to return, waving back: It’s time to go! Stanley Kubrick’s tale of a boxer who crosses a mobster to win the heart of a lady, Killer’s Kiss (1955), reminds us that Times Square used to contain sweaty boxing gyms and dance halls. The film’s longest Times Square interlude is its oddest: the boxer Davie Gordon played by Jamie Smith has his shawl stolen by two playful men in Shriners’ hats who are silent except for one who blows a harmonica, faintly heard over honking cabs and overheard conversations. This long sequence appears to be joining in on directors’ shawl conversations with Kubrick’s own twist. Principle characters will never know why all this happened to them that evening. Love, death, happiness and everlasting misery all of that is caused by Dave’s shawl. Finally, the decade of cinematic shawl conversations conclude in Betolucci’s Before the Revolution (Prima della rivoluzione–1964). One of his character’s lifts up a shawl asking if this was a Rossellini’s shawl. I argue that exploring complimentary allusions in a film where directors are acknowledging their own great debt to another film or filmmaker will further our knowledge of film history adding both depth and resonance to the great works in cinema.

Keywords: allusions, Bertolucci, Fellini, homage, Kubrick, lean, Rossellini

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5 Elimination of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV/AIDS: A Study of the Knowledge, Attitudes and Perceptions of Healthcare Workers in Abuja Nigeria

Authors: Ezinne K. Okoro, Takahiko Katoh, Yoko Kawamura, Stanley C. Meribe

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HIV infection in children is largely as a result of vertical transmission (mother to child transmission [MTCT]). Thus, elimination of mother to child transmission of HIV/AIDS is critical in eliminating HIV infection in children. In Nigeria, drawbacks such as; limited pediatric screening, limited human capital, insufficient advocacy and poor understanding of ART guidelines, have impacted efforts at combating the disease, even as treatment services are free. Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission (PMTCT) program relies on health workers who not only counsel pregnant women on first contact but can competently provide HIV-positive pregnant women with accurate information about the PMTCT program such as feeding techniques and drug adherence. In developing regions like Nigeria where health care delivery faces a lot of drawbacks, it becomes paramount to address these issues of poor PMTCT coverage by conducting a baseline assessment of the knowledge, practices and perceptions related to HIV prevention amongst healthcare workers in Nigeria. A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted amongst 250 health workers currently employed in health facilities in Abuja, Nigeria where PMTCT services were offered with the capacity to carry out early infant diagnosis testing (EID). Data was collected using a self-administered, pretested, structured questionnaire. This study showed that the knowledge of PMTCT of HIV was poor (30%) among healthcare workers who offer this service day-to-day to pregnant women. When PMTCT practices were analyzed in keeping with National PMTCT guidelines, over 61% of the respondents reported observing standard practices and the majority (58%) had good attitudes towards caring for patients with HIV/AIDS. Although 61% of the respondents reported being satisfied with the quality of service being rendered, 63% reported not being satisfied with their level of knowledge. Predictors of good knowledge were job designation and level of educational attainment. Health workers who were more satisfied with their working conditions and those who had worked for a longer time in the PMTCT service were more likely to observe standard PMTCT practices. With over 62% of the healthcare workers suggesting that more training would improve the quality of service being rendered, this is a strong pointer to stakeholders to consider a ‘healthcare worker-oriented approach’ when planning and conducting PMTCT training for healthcare workers. This in turn will increase pediatric ARV coverage, the knowledge and effectiveness of the healthcare workers in carrying out appropriate PMTCT interventions and culminating in the reduction/elimination of HIV transmission to newborns.

Keywords: attitudes, HIV/AIDS, healthcare workers, knowledge, mother to child transmission, Nigeria, perceptions

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4 Examining College Students’ Attitudes toward Diversity Environments in a Physical Activity Course

Authors: Young Ik Suh, Sanghak Lee, Tae Wook Chung

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In recent year, cultural diversity has acquired increasing attentions in our society due to the cultural pluralism and globalization. With the emphasis of diversity in our society, higher education has played a significant role in preparing people to be successful in a diverse world. A number of colleges and universities provide various diversity-related courses that enhance students to recognize the importance of diversity and multiculturalism. However, little research has been conducted with diversity environments in physical activity and sports-related courses to appreciate students’ attitudes toward multiculturalism. Physical activity courses can be regarded as an essential and complementary part of general education. As well, playing and watching certain sports plays a critical role to foster mutual understanding between different races and to help social integration for minority communities. Therefore, it is expected that the appropriate diverse environments in physical activity courses may have a positive impact to the understandings of different cultures and races. The primary purpose of this study is to examine attitudes toward cultural diversity in a physical activity course among undergraduate students. In building on the scholarly foundation in this area, this study applies the established survey scale (e.g., Pluralism and Diversity Attitude Assessment [PADAA]) developed by Stanley (1996) and previous literature related to cultural diversity. The PADAA includes 19 questions. The following two research hypotheses were proposed. H1: Students who take a diversity-related physical course (i.e., Taekwondo) will provide positive attitude changes toward their cultural diversity. H2: Students who take a general physical activity course (i.e., Weight Training) will provide no significant attitude changes toward their cultural diversity. To test the research hypotheses, subjects will be selected from the both Taekwondo and Weight Training class at University of West Georgia. In the Taekwondo class, students will learn the history, meaning, basic terminology, and physical skills, which is a Korean martial art and the national sport of Korea. In the Weight Training class, students will not be exposed to any cultural diversity topics. Regarding data analysis, Doubly Multivariate Analysis of Covariance (Doubly MANCOVA), 2 (time period: pre and after) X 2 (diversity-related content exposure: Taekwondo and Weight Training), will be conducted on attitudes toward the cultural diversity with control variables such as gender and age. The findings of this study will add to the body of literature in cultural diversity because this will be the first known attempt to explain the college students’ attitudes toward cultural diversity in a physical activity courses. The expected results will state that the physical activity course focusing on diversity issues will have a positive impact on college students’ attitude toward cultural diversity. This finding will indicate that Universities need to create diverse programs (e.g., study abroad, exchange program, second language courses) and environments so that students can have positive interactions with other groups of races and different cultures. It is also expected that the positive perceptions and attitudes toward cultural diversity will break down cultural barriers and make students be ready for meeting several challenges in a multicultural and global society.

Keywords: cultural diversity, physical activity course, attitude, Taekwondo

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3 Concepts of Modern Design: A Study of Art and Architecture Synergies in Early 20ᵗʰ Century Europe

Authors: Stanley Russell

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Until the end of the 19th century, European painting dealt almost exclusively with the realistic representation of objects and landscapes, as can be seen in the work of realist artists like Gustav Courbet. Architects of the day typically made reference to and recreated historical precedents in their designs. The curriculum of the first architecture school in Europe, The Ecole des Beaux Artes, based on the study of classical buildings, had a profound effect on the profession. Painting exhibited an increasing level of abstraction from the late 19th century, with impressionism, and the trend continued into the early 20th century when Cubism had an explosive effect sending shock waves through the art world that also extended into the realm of architectural design. Architect /painter Le Corbusier with “Purism” was one of the first to integrate abstract painting and building design theory in works that were equally shocking to the architecture world. The interrelationship of the arts, including architecture, was institutionalized in the Bauhaus curriculum that sought to find commonality between diverse art disciplines. Renowned painter and Bauhaus instructor Vassily Kandinsky was one of the first artists to make a semi-scientific analysis of the elements in “non-objective” painting while also drawing parallels between painting and architecture in his book Point and Line to plane. Russian constructivists made abstract compositions with simple geometric forms, and like the De Stijl group of the Netherlands, they also experimented with full-scale constructions and spatial explorations. Based on the study of historical accounts and original artworks, of Impressionism, Cubism, the Bauhaus, De Stijl, and Russian Constructivism, this paper begins with a thorough explanation of the art theory and several key works from these important art movements of the late 19th and early 20th century. Similarly, based on written histories and first-hand experience of built and drawn works, the author continues with an analysis of the theories and architectural works generated by the same groups, all of which actively pursued continuity between their art and architectural concepts. With images of specific works, the author shows how the trend toward abstraction and geometric purity in painting coincided with a similar trend in architecture that favored simple unornamented geometries. Using examples like the Villa Savoye, The Schroeder House, the Dessau Bauhaus, and unbuilt designs by Russian architect Chernikov, the author gives detailed examples of how the intersection of trends in Art and Architecture led to a unique and fruitful period of creative synergy when the same concepts that were used by artists to generate paintings were also used by architects in the making of objects, space, and buildings. In Conclusion, this article examines the extremely pivotal period in art and architecture history from the late 19th to early 20th century when the confluence of art and architectural theory led to many painted, drawn, and built works that continue to inspire architects and artists to this day.

Keywords: modern art, architecture, design methodologies, modern architecture

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