Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 100

Search results for: Frank Coenjaerts

100 An Empirical Examination of the Determinant of the Financial CEOs’ Compensation for the Post-Financial Crisis Period

Authors: Eunsup Daniel Shim, Jooh Lee

Abstract:

The US financial crisis of 2008 and subsequent Global Financial Crisis were considered by many economists the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. As a results, Dodd-Frank Act has passed and aims '(1) to promote the financial stability of the United States by improving accountability and transparency in the financial system, to end "too big to fail", (2) to protect the American taxpayer by ending bailouts, (3) to protect consumers from abusive financial services practices, and for other purposes.' The enactment of Dodd-Frank Act, in part, intended to significantly influence accountability on executive compensation especially for the financial institutions. This paper empirically investigates the changes in Financial CEOs’ compensation since the Financial Crisis of 2008. Our findings show that in the post- Financial Crisis period financial leverage is significant factor influencing the CEOs’ total compensation. In addition market based performance such as stock price and market-to-book ratio shows significant positive relationship with CEO compensation. This change can be interpreted an attempt to reduce opportunistic behavior of top executives after the financial crisis and the enactment of the Dodd-Frank Act.

Keywords: financial CEO compensation, firm performance, financial crisis of 2008, dodd-frank act

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99 The Juxtaposition of Home in Toni Morrison's Home: Ironic Functions as Trauma and Healing

Authors: Imas Istiani

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The concept of home is usually closely related to the place of safety and security. For people who have travelled far and long, they long to be united with home to feel safe, secure and comfortable. However, for some people, especially for veterans, home cannot offer them those feelings, on the contrary, it can give them the sense of insecurity as well as guilty. Thus, its juxtaposed concept can also put home as an uncanny place that represses and haunt its occupant. As for veterans, 'survivor guilt' overpowers them in the way that it will be hard for them to embrace the comfort that home offers. In Home, Toni Morrison poignantly depicts Frank’s life upon returning from the war. Burdened with his traumatic experiences, Frank finds home full with terror, guilt, fear, grief, and loss. Using Dominick laCapra’s 'Trauma Theory,' the study finds that Frank works through his trauma by being able to distinguish between past and present so that he can overcome those repressed feelings. Aside from his inner healing power, Frank digests the process of working through with the help of home and community, as proposed by Evelyn Jaffe Schreiber claiming that community can help survivors to heal from traumatic experiences. Thus, Home has two juxtaposed functions; both as traumatizing and healing place.

Keywords: trauma, healing, home, trauma theory

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98 Unifying RSV Evolutionary Dynamics and Epidemiology Through Phylodynamic Analyses

Authors: Lydia Tan, Philippe Lemey, Lieselot Houspie, Marco Viveen, Darren Martin, Frank Coenjaerts

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Introduction: Human respiratory syncytial virus (hRSV) is the leading cause of severe respiratory tract infections in infants under the age of two. Genomic substitutions and related evolutionary dynamics of hRSV are of great influence on virus transmission behavior. The evolutionary patterns formed are due to a precarious interplay between the host immune response and RSV, thereby selecting the most viable and less immunogenic strains. Studying genomic profiles can teach us which genes and consequent proteins play an important role in RSV survival and transmission dynamics. Study design: In this study, genetic diversity and evolutionary rate analysis were conducted on 36 RSV subgroup B whole genome sequences and 37 subgroup A genome sequences. Clinical RSV isolates were obtained from nasopharyngeal aspirates and swabs of children between 2 weeks and 5 years old of age. These strains, collected during epidemic seasons from 2001 to 2011 in the Netherlands and Belgium by either conventional or 454-sequencing. Sequences were analyzed for genetic diversity, recombination events, synonymous/non-synonymous substitution ratios, epistasis, and translational consequences of mutations were mapped to known 3D protein structures. We used Bayesian statistical inference to estimate the rate of RSV genome evolution and the rate of variability across the genome. Results: The A and B profiles were described in detail and compared to each other. Overall, the majority of the whole RSV genome is highly conserved among all strains. The attachment protein G was the most variable protein and its gene had, similar to the non-coding regions in RSV, more elevated (two-fold) substitution rates than other genes. In addition, the G gene has been identified as the major target for diversifying selection. Overall, less gene and protein variability was found within RSV-B compared to RSV-A and most protein variation between the subgroups was found in the F, G, SH and M2-2 proteins. For the F protein mutations and correlated amino acid changes are largely located in the F2 ligand-binding domain. The small hydrophobic phosphoprotein and nucleoprotein are the most conserved proteins. The evolutionary rates were similar in both subgroups (A: 6.47E-04, B: 7.76E-04 substitution/site/yr), but estimates of the time to the most recent common ancestor were much lower for RSV-B (B: 19, A: 46.8 yrs), indicating that there is more turnover in this subgroup. Conclusion: This study provides a detailed description of whole RSV genome mutations, the effect on translation products and the first estimate of the RSV genome evolution tempo. The immunogenic G protein seems to require high substitution rates in order to select less immunogenic strains and other conserved proteins are most likely essential to preserve RSV viability. The resulting G gene variability makes its protein a less interesting target for RSV intervention methods. The more conserved RSV F protein with less antigenic epitope shedding is, therefore, more suitable for developing therapeutic strategies or vaccines.

Keywords: drug target selection, epidemiology, respiratory syncytial virus, RSV

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97 Clean Sky 2 Project LiBAT: Light Battery Pack for High Power Applications in Aviation – Simulation Methods in Early Stage Design

Authors: Jan Dahlhaus, Alejandro Cardenas Miranda, Frederik Scholer, Maximilian Leonhardt, Matthias Moullion, Frank Beutenmuller, Julia Eckhardt, Josef Wasner, Frank Nittel, Sebastian Stoll, Devin Atukalp, Daniel Folgmann, Tobias Mayer, Obrad Dordevic, Paul Riley, Jean-Marc Le Peuvedic

Abstract:

Electrical and hybrid aerospace technologies pose very challenging demands on the battery pack – especially with respect to weight and power. In the Clean Sky 2 research project LiBAT (funded by the EU), the consortium is currently building an ambitious prototype with state-of-the art cells that shows the potential of an intelligent pack design with a high level of integration, especially with respect to thermal management and power electronics. For the latter, innovative multi-level-inverter technology is used to realize the required power converting functions with reduced equipment. In this talk the key approaches and methods of the LiBat project will be presented and central results shown. Special focus will be set on the simulative methods used to support the early design and development stages from an overall system perspective. The applied methods can efficiently handle multiple domains and deal with different time and length scales, thus allowing the analysis and optimization of overall- or sub-system behavior. It will be shown how these simulations provide valuable information and insights for the efficient evaluation of concepts. As a result, the construction and iteration of hardware prototypes has been reduced and development cycles shortened.

Keywords: electric aircraft, battery, Li-ion, multi-level-inverter, Novec

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96 Frank Norris’ McTeague: An Entropic Melodrama

Authors: Mohsen Masoomi, Fazel Asadi Amjad, Monireh Arvin

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According to Naturalistic principles, human destiny in the form of blind chance and determinism, entraps the individual, so man is a defenceless creature unable to escape from the ruthless paws of a stoical universe. In Naturalism; nonetheless, melodrama mirrors a conscious alternative with a peculiar function. A typical American Naturalistic character thus cannot be a subject for social criticism of American society since they are not victims of the ongoing virtual slavery, capitalist system, nor of a ruined milieu, but of their own volition, and more importantly, their character frailty. Through a Postmodern viewpoint, each Naturalistic work can encompass some entropic trends and changes culminating in an entire failure and devastation. Frank Norris in McTeague displays the futile struggles of ordinary men and how they end up brutes. McTeague encompasses intoxication, abuse, violation, and ruthless homicides. Norris’ depictions of the falling individual as a demon represent the entropic dimension of Naturalistic novels. McTeague’s defeat is somewhat his own fault, the result of his own blunders and resolution, not the result of sheer accident. Throughout the novel, each character is a kind of insane quester indicating McTeague’s decadence and, by inference, the decadence of Western civilisation. McTeague seems to designate Norris’ solicitude for a community fabricated by the elements of human negative demeanours and conducts hauling acute symptoms of infectious dehumanisation. The aim of this article is to illustrate how one specific negative human disposition gradually, like a running fire, can spread everywhere and burn everything in itself. The author applies the concept of entropy metaphorically to describe the individual devolutions that necessarily comprise community entropy in McTeague, a dying universe.

Keywords: animal imagery, entropy, Gypsy, melodrama

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95 Monitoring Systemic Risk in the Hedge Fund Sector

Authors: Frank Hespeler, Giuseppe Loiacono

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We propose measures for systemic risk generated through intra-sectorial interdependencies in the hedge fund sector. These measures are based on variations in the average cross-effects of funds showing significant interdependency between their individual returns and the moments of the sector’s return distribution. The proposed measures display a high ability to identify periods of financial distress, are robust to modifications in the underlying econometric model and are consistent with intuitive interpretation of the results.

Keywords: hedge funds, systemic risk, vector autoregressive model, risk monitoring

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94 Finding the Right Regulatory Path for Islamic Banking

Authors: Meysam Saidi

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While the specific externalities and required regulatory measures in relation to Islamic banking are fairly uncertain, the business is growing across the world. Unofficial data indicate that the Islamic Finance market is growing with annual rate of 15% and it has reached 1.3 $ trillion size. This trend is associated with inherent systematic connection of Islamic financial institutions to other entities and different sectors of economies. Islamic banking has been subject of market development policies in major economies, most notably the UK. This trend highlights the need for identification of distinct risk features of Islamic banking and crafting customized regulatory measures. So far there has not been a significant systemic crisis in this market which can be attributed to its distinct nature. However, the significant growth and spread of its products worldwide necessitate an in depth study of its nature for customized congruent regulatory measures. In the post financial crisis era some market analysis and reports suggested that the Islamic banks fairly weathered the crisis. As far as heavily blamed conventional financial products such as subprime mortgage backed securities and speculative credit default swaps were concerned the immunity claim can be considered true, as Islamic financial institutions were not directly exposed to such products. Nevertheless, similar to the experience of the conventional banking industry, it can be only a matter of time for Islamic banks to face failures that can be specific to the nature of their business. Using the experience of conventional banking regulations and identifying those peculiarities of Islamic banking that need customized regulatory approach can aid to prevent major failures. Frank Knight has stated that “We perceive the world before we react to it, and we react not to what we perceive, but always to what we infer”. The debate over congruent Islamic banking regulations might not be an exception to Frank Knight’s statement but I will try to base my discussion on concrete evidences. This paper first analyzes both theoretical and actual features of Islamic banking in order to ascertain to its peculiarities in terms of market stability and other externalities. Next, the paper discusses distinct features of Islamic financial transactions and banking which might require customized regulatory measures. Finally, the paper explores how a more transparent path for the Islamic banking regulations can be drawn.

Keywords: Islamic banking, regulation, risks, capital requirements, customer protection, financial stability

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93 Heat and Mass Transfer of an Oscillating Flow in a Porous Channel with Chemical Reaction

Authors: Zahra Neffah, Henda Kahalerras

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A numerical study is made in a parallel-plate porous channel subjected to an oscillating flow and an exothermic chemical reaction on its walls. The flow field in the porous region is modeled by the Darcy–Brinkman–Forchheimer model and the finite volume method is used to solve the governing equations. The effects of the modified Frank-Kamenetskii (FKm) and Damköhler (Dm) numbers, the amplitude of oscillation (A), and the Strouhal number (St) are examined. The main results show an increase of heat and mass transfer rates with A and St, and their decrease with FKm and Dm.

Keywords: chemical reaction, heat and mass transfer, oscillating flow, porous channel

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92 Share Pledging and Financial Constraints in China

Authors: Zijian Cheng, Frank Liu, Yupu Sun

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The relationship between the intensity of share pledging activities and the level of financial constraint in publicly listed firms in China is examined in this paper. Empirical results show that the high financial constraint level may motivate insiders to use share pledging as an alternative funding source and an expropriation mechanism. Share collateralization can cause a subsequently more constrained financing condition. Evidence is found that share pledging made by the controlling shareholder is likely to mitigate financial constraints in the following year. Research findings are robust to alternative measures and an instrumental variable for dealing with endogeneity problems.

Keywords: share pledge, financial constraint, controlling shareholder, dividend policy

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91 Whose Education Is It? Developing Communities Left Out in Framing Higher Education

Authors: Muwanga Zake, Johnnie Wycliffe Frank

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Developing communities accommodating institutions of Higher Education (HE) often have no capacity to pay for HE and so do not contribute values and do not participate in Quality Assurance. Only governments, academia, employers and professional organisations determine values, QA and curricula in HE. A gap between the values in HE and those desirable in local communities and environments leads to erroneous conceptions of the purposes of HE, and to graduates who hardly fit into those local communities. Unemployment and under-utilization of local resources are thus expected. As a way to improve and make HE more relevant for local communities and environment, public perceptions, values and needs should be researched and HE courses should relate with local values and environments. Communities should participate in QA.

Keywords: values, quality assurance, higher education, utilization

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90 Infrastructural Barriers to Engaged Learning in the South Pacific: A Mixed-Methods Study of Cook Islands Nurses' Attitudes towards Health Information Technology

Authors: Jonathan Frank, Michelle Salmona

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We conducted quantitative and qualitative analyses of nurses’ perceived ease of use of electronic medical records and telemedicine in the Cook Islands. We examined antecedents of perceived ease of use through the lens of social construction of learning, and cultural diffusion. Our findings confirmed expected linkages between PEOU, attitudes and intentions. Interviews with nurses suggested infrastructural barriers to engaged learning. We discussed managerial implications of our findings, and areas of interest for future research.

Keywords: health information technology, ICT4D, TAM, developing countries

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89 Impact of Design Choices on the Life Cycle Energy of Modern Buildings

Authors: Mahsa Karimpour, Martin Belusko, Ke Xing, Frank Bruno

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Traditionally the embodied energy of design choices which reduce operational energy were assumed to have a negligible impact on the life cycle energy of buildings. However with new buildings having considerably lower operational energy, the significance of embodied energy increases. A life cycle assessment of a population of house designs was conducted in a mild and mixed climate zone. It was determined not only that embodied energy dominates life cycle energy, but that the impact on embodied of design choices was of equal significance to the impact on operational energy.

Keywords: building life cycle energy, embodied energy, energy design measures, low energy buildings

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88 Supporting Embedded Medical Software Development with MDevSPICE® and Agile Practices

Authors: Surafel Demissie, Frank Keenan, Fergal McCaffery

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Emerging medical devices are highly relying on embedded software that runs on the specific platform in real time. The development of embedded software is different from ordinary software development due to the hardware-software dependency. MDevSPICE® has been developed to provide guidance to support such development. To increase the flexibility of this framework agile practices have been introduced. This paper outlines the challenges for embedded medical device software development and the structure of MDevSPICE® and suggests a suitable combination of agile practices that will help to add flexibility and address corresponding challenges of embedded medical device software development.

Keywords: agile practices, challenges, embedded software, MDevSPICE®, medical device

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87 Use of Industrial Wastes for Production of Low-Cost Building Material

Authors: Frank Aneke, Elizabeth Theron

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Demand for building materials in the last decade due to growing population, has caused scarcity of low-cost housing in South Africa. The investigation thoroughly examined dolomitic waste (DW), silica fume (SF) and River sand (RS) effects on the geotechnical behaviour of fly ash bricks. Bricks samples were prepared at different ratios as follows: I. FA1 contained FA70% + RS30%, II. FA2 contained FA60% + DW10%+RS30%, III. FA3 has a mix proportion of FA50% + DW20%+RS30%, IV. FA4 has a mix ratio FA40% + DW30%+RS30%, V. FA5 contained FA20% + DW40% + SF10%+RS30% by mass percentage of the FA material. However, utilization of this wastes in production of bricks, does not only produce a valuable commercial product that is cost effective, but also reduces a major waste disposal problem from the surrounding environment.

Keywords: bricks, dolomite, fly ash, industrial wastes

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86 The Genuine Happiness Scale: Preliminary Results

Authors: Myriam Rudaz, Thomas Ledermann, Frank D. Fincham

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We provide initial results on the development and validation of the Genuine Happiness Scale (GHS). Following the Buddhist view of happiness, genuine happiness can be described as an unlimited, everlasting inner joy and peace undisturbed by external circumstances and that gives a person the inner resources to deal with whatever comes his or her way in life. The sample consisted of 678 young adults, with 432 adults completing the surveys twice, approximately six weeks apart. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis providing evidence for a unidimensional factor structure of the GHS. Hierarchical regression analysis revealed that, after controlling for genuine happiness at baseline, caring for bliss, mindfulness, and compassion predicted genuine happiness approximately six weeks later. The GHS may be particularly useful as an outcome measure for evaluating mindfulness- and compassion-based interventions.

Keywords: happiness, bliss, well-being, caring for bliss, mindfulness, compassion

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85 A Convolutional Deep Neural Network Approach for Skin Cancer Detection Using Skin Lesion Images

Authors: Firas Gerges, Frank Y. Shih

Abstract:

Malignant melanoma, known simply as melanoma, is a type of skin cancer that appears as a mole on the skin. It is critical to detect this cancer at an early stage because it can spread across the body and may lead to the patient's death. When detected early, melanoma is curable. In this paper, we propose a deep learning model (convolutional neural networks) in order to automatically classify skin lesion images as malignant or benign. Images underwent certain pre-processing steps to diminish the effect of the normal skin region on the model. The result of the proposed model showed a significant improvement over previous work, achieving an accuracy of 97%.

Keywords: deep learning, skin cancer, image processing, melanoma

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84 Evaluation of Ultrasonic Techniques for the Estimation of Air Voids in Asphalt Concrete

Authors: Majid Zargar, Frank Bullen, Ron Ayers

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One of the important factors in the design of asphalt concrete mixes is the accurate measurement of air voids and their variable distribution. Both can have significant impact on long and short term fatigue and creep behaviour under traffic. While some simple methods exist for overall evaluation of air voids, measuring air void distribution in asphalt concrete is very complex, involving expensive techniques such as X-ray methodologies. The research reported in the paper investigated the use of non-destructive ultrasonic techniques as an alternative to estimate the amount of air voids and their distribution within asphalt samples. Seventy-four Standard AC–14 asphalt samples made with three types of bitumen; Multigrade, PMB and C320 were analysed using ultrasonic techniques. The results have illustrated that ultrasonic testing has the potential of being a rapid, accurate and cost-effective method of estimating air void distribution in asphalt.

Keywords: asphalt concrete, air voids, ultrasonic, mechanical behaviour

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83 A Comparison of Neural Network and DOE-Regression Analysis for Predicting Resource Consumption of Manufacturing Processes

Authors: Frank Kuebler, Rolf Steinhilper

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Artificial neural networks (ANN) as well as Design of Experiments (DOE) based regression analysis (RA) are mainly used for modeling of complex systems. Both methodologies are commonly applied in process and quality control of manufacturing processes. Due to the fact that resource efficiency has become a critical concern for manufacturing companies, these models needs to be extended to predict resource-consumption of manufacturing processes. This paper describes an approach to use neural networks as well as DOE based regression analysis for predicting resource consumption of manufacturing processes and gives a comparison of the achievable results based on an industrial case study of a turning process.

Keywords: artificial neural network, design of experiments, regression analysis, resource efficiency, manufacturing process

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82 Design of a Laboratory Test for InvestigatingPermanent Deformation of Asphalt

Authors: Esmaeil Ahmadinia, Frank Bullen, Ron Ayers

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Many concerns have been raised in recent years about the adequacy of existing creep test methods for evaluating rut-resistance of asphalt mixes. Many researchers believe the main reason for the creep tests being unable to duplicate field results is related to a lack of a realistic confinement for laboratory specimens. In-situ asphalt under axle loads is surrounded by a mass of asphalt, which provides stress-strain generated confinement. However, most existing creep tests are largely unconfined in their nature. It has been hypothesised that by providing a degree of confinement, representative of field conditions, in a creep test, it could be possible to establish a better correlation between the field and laboratory. In this study, a new methodology is explored where confinement for asphalt specimens is provided. The proposed methodology is founded on the current Australian test method, adapted to provide simulated field conditions through the provision of sample confinement.

Keywords: asphalt mixture, creep test, confinements, permanent deformation

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81 Jet-Stream Airsail: Study of the Shape and the Behavior of the Connecting Cable

Authors: Christopher Frank, Yoshiki Miyairi

Abstract:

A jet-stream airsail concept takes advantage of aerology in order to fly without propulsion. Weather phenomena, especially jet streams, are relatively permanent high winds blowing from west to east, located at average altitudes and latitudes in both hemispheres. To continuously extract energy from the jet-stream, the system is composed of a propelled plane and a wind turbine interconnected by a cable. This work presents the aerodynamic characteristics and the behavior of the cable that links the two subsystems and transmits energy from the turbine to the aircraft. Two ways of solving this problem are explored: numerically and analytically. After obtaining the optimal shape of the cross-section of the cable, its behavior is analyzed as a 2D problem solved numerically and analytically. Finally, a 3D extension could be considered by adding lateral forces. The results of this work can be further used in the design process of the overall system: aircraft-turbine.

Keywords: jet-stream, cable, tether, aerodynamics, aircraft, airsail, wind

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80 Immunostimulant from Biodiversity to Enhance Shrimp Survival against Vibriosis

Authors: Frank Alexis, Jenny Antonia Rodriguez Leon, Cristobal Leonardo Dominguez Borbor, Mery Rosario Ramirez Munoz

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The shrimp industry has increased in the last years to the point of becoming one of the most dynamic industries. However, the appearance of diseases that significantly affect the production of shrimps has been an obstacle for the shrimp industry. We hypothesized that natural fibers from biodiversity can stimulate the immune system to prevent shrimp diseases like vibriosis. In this project, we extracted the fibers from vegetal sources in Ecuador and characterized them using common techniques like XRD, SEM, and then we tested the effect of fibers as immunostimulants for shrimps in-vitro and in-vivo using small aquarium and large pools. Our results demonstrate that vegetal fibers can significantly increase the survival of shrimps. Moreover, the production of shrimps in a large pool was significantly increased. Lastly, the test of color and taste successfully surpass the control group of shrimps not treated with fiber food supplements.

Keywords: fibers, immunostimulant, shrimp, vibriosis

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79 Managing the Cloud Procurement Process: Findings from a Case Study

Authors: Andreas Jede, Frank Teuteberg

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Cloud computing (CC) has already gained overall appreciation in research and practice. Whereas the willingness to integrate cloud services in various IT environments is still unbroken, the previous CC procurement processes run mostly in an unorganized and non-standardized way. In practice, a sufficiently specific, yet applicable business process for the important acquisition phase is often lacking. And research does not appropriately remedy this deficiency yet. Therefore, this paper introduces a field-tested approach for CC procurement. Based on an extensive literature review and augmented by expert interviews, we designed a model that is validated and further refined through an in-depth real-life case study. For the detailed process description, we apply the event-driven process chain notation (EPC). The gained valuable insights into the case study may help CC research to shift to a more socio-technical area. For practice, next to giving useful organizational instructions we will provide extended checklists and lessons learned.

Keywords: cloud procurement process, IT-organization, event-driven process chain, in-depth case study

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78 Cargo Securement Standards and Braking Maneuvers

Authors: Jose A. Romero, Frank Otremba, Alejandro A. Lozano-Guzman

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Road safety is affected by many factors, involving the vehicle, the infrastructure, and the environment. Many efforts have been thus made to improve road safety through rational standards for the different systems involved in freight transportation. Cargo shifting and falling have been recognized as critical and contributive effects for road crashes. To avoid such situations, regional and international standards have been implemented, aiming to prevent such types of cargo-related accidents. In particular, there are specific compulsory standard requirements to maintain the cargo on the vehicle without shifting, when the vehicle performs an emergency braking maneuver. In this paper, a simulation is presented to analyze the effect of the vibration of the cargo on the braking distance of the vehicle. Such vibration can lead to a poor cargo restraining, and higher braking efficiency, as a result of the decoupling of the cargo mass from the vehicle mass. Such higher braking efficiency, on the order of 4.4%, further suggests a greater demand for the current braking standards.

Keywords: road safety, cargo securement, shifting cargo, vehicle dynamics, ABS

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77 Reframing Service Sector Privatisation Quality Conception with the Theory of Deferred Action

Authors: Mukunda Bastola, Frank Nyame-Asiamah

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Economics explanation for privatisation, drawing on neo-liberal market structures and technical efficiency principles has failed to address social imbalance and, distribute the efficiency benefits accrued from privatisation equitably among service users and different classes of people in society. Stakeholders’ interest, which cover ethical values and changing human needs are ignored due to shareholders’ profit maximising strategy with higher service charges. The consequence of these is that, the existing justifications for privatisation have fallen short of customer quality expectations because the underlying plan-based models fail to account for the nuances of customer expectations. We draw on the theory of deferred action to develop a context-based privatisation model, the deferred-based privatisation model, to explain how privatisation could be strategised for the emergent reality of the wider stakeholders’ interests and everyday quality demands of customers which are unpredictable.

Keywords: privatisation, service quality, shareholders, deferred action, deferred-based privatisation model

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76 Recycling of Plastic Waste into Composites Using Kaolin as Reinforcement

Authors: Gloria P. Manu, Johnson K. Efavi, Abu Yaya, Grace K. Arkorful, Frank Godson

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Plastics have been used extensively in both food and water packaging and other applications because of their inherent properties of low bulk densities and inertness as well as its low cost. Waste management of these plastics after usage is troubling in Ghana. One way of addressing the environmental problems associated with these plastic wastes is by recycling into useful products such as composites for energy and construction applications using natural or local materials as reinforcement. In this work, composites have been formed from waste low-density polyethylene (LDPE) and kaolin at temperatures as low as 70 ֯C using low-cost solvents like kerosene. Chemical surface modifications have been employed to improve the interfacial bonding resulting in the enhancement of properties of the composites. Kaolin particles of sizes ≤ 90µm were dispersed in the polyethylene matrix. The content of the LDPE was varied between 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, and 70 %wt. Results obtained indicated that all the composites exhibited impressive compressive and flexural strengths with the 50%wt. composition having the highest strength. The hardness value of the composites increased as the polyethylene composition reduces and that of the kaolin increased. The average density and water of absorption of the composites were 530kg/m³ and 1.3% respectively.

Keywords: polyethylene, recycling, waste, composite, kaolin

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75 The Effect of Relationship Marketing on Service Quality and Customer Satisfaction without Service Providers' Emotional Intelligence: The Case of the Insurance Industry in Ghana

Authors: Frank Frimpong Opuni, Michael Mba Allan, Kwame Adu-Gyamfi, Michael Sarkodie Baffoe

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This paper assesses the effect of relationship marketing on service quality and customer satisfaction from the perspective of the moderating role of emotional intelligence in the insurance industry in Ghana. A descriptive quantitative research technique was employed. A random sample of 384 each of customers and service providers in 3 insurance firms in Accra were used as the source of data. According to findings, emotional intelligence makes a strong positive effect on relationship marketing at 5% significance level, r (283) = .817, p = .000. Though relationship marketing makes a strong positive effect on service quality (r = .767, p < .05) and customer satisfaction (r = .647, p < .05), this effect becomes insignificant (p > .05) when the effect of emotional intelligence on relationship marketing is controlled for. It is therefore recommended that insurance firms give priority to equipping their relationship employees with emotional intelligence to maximise service quality and customer satisfaction.

Keywords: relationship marketing, service quality, customer satisfaction, emotional intelligence

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74 Overall Student Satisfaction at Tabor School of Education: An Examination of Key Factors Based on the AUSSE SEQ

Authors: Francisco Ben, Tracey Price, Chad Morrison, Victoria Warren, Willy Gollan, Robyn Dunbar, Frank Davies, Mark Sorrell

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This paper focuses particularly on the educational aspects that contribute to the overall educational satisfaction rated by Tabor School of Education students who participated in the Australasian Survey of Student Engagement (AUSSE) conducted by the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) in 2010, 2012 and 2013. In all three years of participation, Tabor ranked first especially in the area of overall student satisfaction. By using a single level path analysis in relation to the AUSSE datasets collected using the Student Engagement Questionnaire (SEQ) for Tabor School of Education, seven aspects that contribute to overall student satisfaction have been identified. There appears to be a direct causal link between aspects of the Supportive Learning Environment, Work Integrated Learning, Career Readiness, Academic Challenge, and overall educational satisfaction levels. A further three aspects, being Student and Staff Interactions, Active Learning, and Enriching Educational Experiences, indirectly influence overall educational satisfaction levels.

Keywords: attrition, retention, educational experience, pre-service teacher education, student satisfaction

Procedia PDF Downloads 277
73 Competing Risk Analyses in Survival Trials During COVID-19 Pandemic

Authors: Ping Xu, Gregory T. Golm, Guanghan (Frank) Liu

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In the presence of competing events, traditional survival analysis may not be appropriate and can result in biased estimates, as it assumes independence between competing events and the event of interest. Instead, competing risk analysis should be considered to correctly estimate the survival probability of the event of interest and the hazard ratio between treatment groups. The COVID-19 pandemic has provided a potential source of competing risks in clinical trials, as participants in trials may experienceCOVID-related competing events before the occurrence of the event of interest, for instance, death due to COVID-19, which can affect the incidence rate of the event of interest. We have performed simulation studies to compare multiple competing risk analysis models, including the cumulative incidence function, the sub-distribution hazard function, and the cause-specific hazard function, to the traditional survival analysis model under various scenarios. We also provide a general recommendation on conducting competing risk analysis in randomized clinical trials during the era of the COVID-19 pandemic based on the extensive simulation results.

Keywords: competing risk, survival analysis, simulations, randomized clinical trial, COVID-19 pandemic

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72 An Application of Sinc Function to Approximate Quadrature Integrals in Generalized Linear Mixed Models

Authors: Altaf H. Khan, Frank Stenger, Mohammed A. Hussein, Reaz A. Chaudhuri, Sameera Asif

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This paper discusses a novel approach to approximate quadrature integrals that arise in the estimation of likelihood parameters for the generalized linear mixed models (GLMM) as well as Bayesian methodology also requires computation of multidimensional integrals with respect to the posterior distributions in which computation are not only tedious and cumbersome rather in some situations impossible to find solutions because of singularities, irregular domains, etc. An attempt has been made in this work to apply Sinc function based quadrature rules to approximate intractable integrals, as there are several advantages of using Sinc based methods, for example: order of convergence is exponential, works very well in the neighborhood of singularities, in general quite stable and provide high accurate and double precisions estimates. The Sinc function based approach seems to be utilized first time in statistical domain to our knowledge, and it's viability and future scopes have been discussed to apply in the estimation of parameters for GLMM models as well as some other statistical areas.

Keywords: generalized linear mixed model, likelihood parameters, qudarature, Sinc function

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71 Reliability Assessment Using Full Probabilistic Modelling for Carbonation and Chloride Exposures, Including Initiation and Propagation Periods

Authors: Frank Papworth, Inam Khan

Abstract:

Fib’s model code 2020 has four approaches for design life verification. Historically ‘deemed to satisfy provisions have been the principal approach, but this has limited options for materials and covers. The use of an equation in fib’s model code for service life design to predict time to corrosion initiation has become increasingly popular to justify further options, but in some cases, the analysis approaches are incorrect. Even when the equations are computed using full probabilistic analysis, there are common mistakes. This paper reviews the work of recent fib commissions on implementing the service life model to assess the reliability of durability designs, including initiation and propagation periods. The paper goes on to consider the assessment of deemed to satisfy requirements in national codes and considers the influence of various options, including different steel types, various cement systems, quality of concrete and cover, on reliability achieved. As modelling is based on achieving agreed target reliability, consideration is given to how a project might determine appropriate target reliability.

Keywords: chlorides, marine, exposure, design life, reliability, modelling

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