Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 113

Search results for: economics

113 Institutional Determinants of Economic Growth in Georgia and in Other Post-Communist Economies

Authors: Nazira Kakulia, Tsotne Zhghenti

Abstract:

The institutional development is one of the actual topics in economics science. New trends and directions of institutional development mostly depend on its structure and framework. Transformation of institutions is an important problem for every economy, especially for developing countries. The first research goal is to determine the importance and interactions between different institutions in Georgia. Using World Governance Indicators and Economic Freedom indexes it can be calculated the size for each institutional group. The second aim of this research is to evaluate Georgian institutional backwardness in comparison to other post-communist economies. We use statistical and econometric methods to evaluate the difference between the levels of institutional development in Georgia and in leading post-communist economies. Within the scope of this research, major findings are coefficients which are an assessment of their deviation (i.e. lag) of institutional indicators between Georgia and leading post-communist country which should be compared. The last part of the article includes analysis around the selected coefficients.

Keywords: Post-communist transition, institutions, economic growth, institutional development.

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112 Conventional and Hybrid Network Energy Systems Optimization for Canadian Community

Authors: Mohamed Ghorab

Abstract:

Local generated and distributed system for thermal and electrical energy is sighted in the near future to reduce transmission losses instead of the centralized system. Distributed Energy Resources (DER) is designed at different sizes (small and medium) and it is incorporated in energy distribution between the hubs. The energy generated from each technology at each hub should meet the local energy demands. Economic and environmental enhancement can be achieved when there are interaction and energy exchange between the hubs. Network energy system and CO2 optimization between different six hubs presented Canadian community level are investigated in this study. Three different scenarios of technology systems are studied to meet both thermal and electrical demand loads for the six hubs. The conventional system is used as the first technology system and a reference case study. The conventional system includes boiler to provide the thermal energy, but the electrical energy is imported from the utility grid. The second technology system includes combined heat and power (CHP) system to meet the thermal demand loads and part of the electrical demand load. The third scenario has integration systems of CHP and Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) where the thermal waste energy from the CHP system is used by ORC to generate electricity. General Algebraic Modeling System (GAMS) is used to model DER system optimization based on energy economics and CO2 emission analyses. The results are compared with the conventional energy system. The results show that scenarios 2 and 3 provide an annual total cost saving of 21.3% and 32.3 %, respectively compared to the conventional system (scenario 1). Additionally, Scenario 3 (CHP & ORC systems) provides 32.5% saving in CO2 emission compared to conventional system subsequent case 2 (CHP system) with a value of 9.3%.  

Keywords: Distributed energy resources, network energy system, optimization, microgeneration system.

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111 Reduced Rule Based Fuzzy Logic Controlled Isolated Bidirectional Converter Operating in Extended Phase Shift Control for Bidirectional Energy Transfer

Authors: Anupam Kumar, Abdul Hamid Bhat, Pramod Agarwal

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Bidirectional energy transfer capability with high efficiency and reduced cost is fast gaining prominence in the central part of a lot of power conversion systems in Direct Current (DC) microgrid. Preferably, under the economics constraints, these systems utilise a single high efficiency power electronics conversion system and a dual active bridge converter. In this paper, modeling and performance of Dual Active Bridge (DAB) converter with Extended Phase Shift (EPS) is evaluated with two batteries on both sides of DC bus and bidirectional energy transfer is facilitated and this is further compared with the Single Phase Shift (SPS) mode of operation. Optimum operating zone is identified through exhaustive simulations using MATLAB/Simulink and SimPowerSystem software. Reduced rules based fuzzy logic controller is implemented for closed loop control of DAB converter. The control logic enables the bidirectional energy transfer within the batteries even at lower duty ratios. Charging and discharging of batteries is supervised by the fuzzy logic controller. State of charge, current and voltage for both the batteries are plotted in the battery characteristics. Power characteristics of batteries are also obtained using MATLAB simulations.

Keywords: Fuzzy logic controller, rule base, membership functions, dual active bridge converter, bidirectional power flow, duty ratio, extended phase shift, state of charge.

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110 Influence Analysis of Macroeconomic Parameters on Real Estate Price Variation in Taipei, Taiwan

Authors: Li Li, Kai-Hsuan Chu

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It is well known that the real estate price depends on a lot of factors. Each house current value is dependent on the location, room number, transportation, living convenience, year and surrounding environments. Although, there are different experienced models for housing agent to estimate the price, it is a case by case study without overall dynamic variation investigation. However, many economic parameters may more or less influence the real estate price variation. Here, the influences of most macroeconomic parameters on real estate price are investigated individually based on least-square scheme and grey correlation strategy. Then those parameters are classified into leading indices, simultaneous indices and laggard indices. In addition, the leading time period is evaluated based on least square method. The important leading and simultaneous indices can be used to establish an artificial intelligent neural network model for real estate price variation prediction. The real estate price variation of Taipei, Taiwan during 2005 ~ 2017 are chosen for this research data analysis and validation. The results show that the proposed method has reasonable prediction function for real estate business reference.

Keywords: Real estate price, least-square, grey correlation, macroeconomics.

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109 The Use of Graphic Design Elements for Design of Newspaper for Women

Authors: Pibool Waijittragum

Abstract:

This paper has its objectives to reveal contents and personality suitable to women’s newspapers. The research methodology employed in this study is the questionnaire which is derived from a literature review related to newspapers, graphic elements method for print media design and 12 sample sizes of different daily newspapers. In order to acquire an in-depth understanding and comprehensible view of desirable for a women’s newspaper design, graphic elements that related to that personality as well as other preferable elements for a women’s newspaper, including seven editorial Many Thai newspapers were offer a women’s documentary and column space. With its feminine looks, most of them appeared with warm tones and friendly mood through their headlines, contents, illustrations and graphics. The study found that most desirable personalities for a women’s newspaper design in Thailand are: Modern, Chic and Natural. Each personality has significant graphic elements as follows: 1. Modern: significant elements of modern personality comprises of the composition with graduation pattern which creates attractiveness by using an anomalous alignment layout grid and outstanding structure to create focal points and dynamic movement. Dark to black color that has narrowed, limited hue coupled with bright color tones. The round shape of the Thai font style was suitable for this concept. Such Thai fonts have harmonious proportion and consistent stroke with the urban-polite look. 2. Chic: significant elements of chic personality comprises of the proper composition with distinctive scale, using rhythmic repetition and a contrast of scale to draw in reader attention. Vivid and bright color tones with extensive hues coupled with similar color tones and round shape of the Thai font style with a light stroke and consistent line. 3. Natural: significant elements of natural personality comprises of the proper composition using rhythmic repetition that creates a focal point through striking images and harmonious perspective. Warm color tones with restricted hues that appear to look natural. Duo tone color was suitable through the gradually increasing gradient. The Thai style with hand writing font was suitable through the inconsistent stroke. There are 10 types of daily content that were revealed to be the most desirable for Thai women readers, these are: Daily News, Economics News, Education News, Entertainment News, International news, Political News, Public Health News, Scientific News, Social News and Sports News. As well, there are 16 topics identified as very desirable for Thai women readers, such as: Art and Culture, Automobile, Classified, Special Scoop, Editorial, Advertisement, Entertainment, Health and Quality of Life, History, Horoscope, Lifestyle and Fashion, Literature, Nature - Environment and Tourism, Night Life, Stars and Jet Set Gossip, Women’s Issue.

Keywords: Graphic design elements, women newspaper, newspaper design.

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108 Ethical Finance and Islamic Finance: Particularities, Possible Convergence and Potential Development

Authors: Safa Ougoujil, Sidi Mohamed Rigar

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Economics is not an exact science. It cannot be from the moment it is a social science that concerns society organization, a human science that depends on the behavior of the men and women who make a part of this society. Therefore, it cannot ignore morality, the instinctive sense of good and evil, the natural order which place us between certain values, and which religion often sheds light on. In terms of finance, the reference to ethics is becoming more popular than ever. This is naturally due to the growing financial crises. Finance is less and less ethical, but some financial practices have continued to do so. This is the case of ethical finance and Islamic finance. After attempting to define the concepts of ethical finance and Islamic finance, in a period when financial innovation seeks to encourage differentiation in order to create more profit margins, this article attempts to expose the particularities, the convergences and the potentialities of development of these two sensibilities.

Keywords: Convergences, ethical finance, Islamic finance, potential development.

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107 Economics of Open and Distance Education in the University of Ibadan, Nigeria

Authors: Babatunde Kasim Oladele

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One of the major objectives of the Nigeria national policy on education is the provision of equal educational opportunities to all citizens at different levels of education. With regards to higher education, an aspect of the policy encourages distance learning to be organized and delivered by tertiary institutions in Nigeria. This study therefore, determines how much of the Government resources are committed, how the resources are utilized and what alternative sources of funding are available for this system of education. This study investigated the trends in recurrent costs between 2004/2005 and 2013/2014 at University of Ibadan Distance Learning Centre (DLC). A descriptive survey research design was employed for the study. Questionnaire was the research instrument used for the collection of data. The population of the study was 280 current distance learning education students, 70 academic staff and 50 administrative staff. Only 354 questionnaires were correctly filled and returned. Data collected were analyzed and coded using the frequencies, ratio, average and percentages were used to answer all the research questions. The study revealed that staff salaries and allowances of academic and non-academic staff represent the most important variable that influences the cost of education. About 55% of resources were allocated to this sector alone. The study also indicates that costs rise every year with increase in enrolment representing a situation of diseconomies of scale. This study recommends that Universities who operates distance learning program should strive to explore other internally generated revenue option to boost their revenue. University of Ibadan, being the premier university in Nigeria, should be given foreign aid and home support, both financially and materially, to enable the institute to run a formidable distance education program that would measure up in planning and implementation with those of developed nation.

Keywords: Open education, distance education, University of Ibadan, cost of education, Nigeria.

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106 Ultrasound Assisted Cooling Crystallization of Lactose Monohydrate

Authors: Sanjaykumar R. Patel, Parth R. Kayastha

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α-lactose monohydrate is widely used in the pharmaceutical industries as an inactive substance that acts as a vehicle or a medium for a drug or other active substance. It is a byproduct of dairy industries, and the recovery of lactose from whey not only boosts the improvement of the economics of whey utilization but also causes a reduction in pollution as lactose recovery can reduce the BOD of whey by more than 80%. In the present study, levels of process parameters were kept as initial lactose concentration (30-50% w/w), sonication amplitude (20-40%), sonication time (2-6 hours), and crystallization temperature (10-20 oC) for the recovery of lactose in ultrasound assisted cooling crystallization. In comparison with cooling crystallization, the use of ultrasound enhanced the lactose recovery by 39.17% (w/w). The parameters were optimized for the lactose recovery using Taguchi Method. The optimum conditions found were initial lactose concentration at level 3 (50% w/w), amplitude of sonication at level 2 (40%), the sonication time at level 3 (6 hours), and crystallization temperature at level 1 (10 °C). The maximum recovery was found to be 85.85% at the optimum conditions. Sonication time and the initial lactose concentration were found to be significant parameters for the lactose recovery.

Keywords: Crystallization, Taguchi method, ultrasound, lactose.

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105 A Concept Study to Assist Non-Profit Organizations to Better Target Developing Countries

Authors: Malek Makki

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The main purpose of this research study is to assist non-profit organizations (NPOs) to better segment a group of least developing countries and to optimally target the most needier areas, so that the provided aids make positive and lasting differences. We applied international marketing and strategy approaches to segment a sub-group of candidates among a group of 151 countries identified by the UN-G77 list, and furthermore, we point out the areas of priorities. We use reliable and well known criteria on the basis of economics, geography, demography and behavioral. These criteria can be objectively estimated and updated so that a follow-up can be performed to measure the outcomes of any program. We selected 12 socio-economic criteria that complement each other: GDP per capita, GDP growth, industry value added, export per capita, fragile state index, corruption perceived index, environment protection index, ease of doing business index, global competitiveness index, Internet use, public spending on education, and employment rate. A weight was attributed to each variable to highlight the relative importance of each criterion within the country. Care was taken to collect the most recent available data from trusted well-known international organizations (IMF, WB, WEF, and WTO). Construct of equivalence was carried out to compare the same variables across countries. The combination of all these weighted estimated criteria provides us with a global index that represents the level of development per country. An absolute index that combines wars and risks was introduced to exclude or include a country on the basis of conflicts and a collapsing state. The final step applied to the included countries consists of a benchmarking method to select the segment of countries and the percentile of each criterion. The results of this study allowed us to exclude 16 countries for risks and security. We also excluded four countries because they lack reliable and complete data. The other countries were classified per percentile thru their global index, and we identified the needier and the areas where aids are highly required to help any NPO to prioritize the area of implementation. This new concept is based on defined, actionable, accessible and accurate variables by which NPO can implement their program and it can be extended to profit companies to perform their corporate social responsibility acts.

Keywords: Developing countries, International marketing, non-profit organization, segmentation.

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104 Competitor Analysis to Quantify the Benefits and for Different Use of Transport Infrastructure

Authors: Dimitrios J. Dimitriou, Maria F. Sartzetaki

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Different transportation modes have key operational advantages and disadvantages, providing a variety of different transport options to users and passengers. This paper reviews key variables for the competition between air transport and other transport modes. The aim of this paper is to review the competition between air transport and other transport modes, providing results in terms of perceived cost for the users, for destinations high competitiveness for all transport modes. The competitor analysis variables include the cost and time outputs for each transport option, highlighting the level of competitiveness on high demanded Origin-Destination corridors. The case study presents the output of a such analysis for the OD corridor in Greece that connects the Capital city (Athens) with the second largest city (Thessaloniki) and the different transport modes have been considered (air, train, road). Conventional wisdom is to present an easy to handle tool for planners, managers and decision makers towards pricing policy effectiveness and demand attractiveness, appropriate to use for other similar cases.

Keywords: Competitor analysis, generalized cost, transport economics, quantitative modelling.

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103 Economic Effects of Maritime Environmental Legislation in the North and Baltic Sea Area: An Exploratory Sequential Mixed Methods Approach

Authors: Thea Freese

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Environmental legislation to protect North and Baltic Sea areas from harmful vessel-source emissions has received increased political attention in recent years. Legislative measures are expected to show positive effects on the health of the marine environment and society. At the same time, compliance might increase the costs to industry and have effects on freight rates and volumes shipped with potential negative repercussions on the environment. Building on an exploratory sequential mixed methods approach, this research project will study the economic effects of maritime environmental legislation in two phases. In Phase I, exploratory in-depth interviews were conducted with 12 experts from various stakeholder groups aiming at identifying variables influencing the relationship between environmental legislation, freight rates and volumes shipped. Influencing factors like compliance, enforcement and modal shift were identified and studied. Phase II will comprise of a quantitative study conducted with the aim of verifying the theory build in Phase I and quantifying economic effects of rules on shipping pollution. Research in this field might inform policy-makers about determinants of behaviour of ship operators in the face of the law and might further the development of a comprehensive legal system for marine environmental protection. At the present stage of research, first tentative results from the qualitative phase may be examined and open research questions to be addressed in the quantitative phase as well as possible research designs for phase II may be discussed. Input from other researchers will be highly valuable at this point.

Keywords: Clean shipping operations, compliance, maritime environmental legislation, maritime law and economics, mixed methods research, North and Baltic Sea area.

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102 Job Shop Scheduling: Classification, Constraints and Objective Functions

Authors: Majid Abdolrazzagh-Nezhad, Salwani Abdullah

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The job-shop scheduling problem (JSSP) is an important decision facing those involved in the fields of industry, economics and management. This problem is a class of combinational optimization problem known as the NP-hard problem. JSSPs deal with a set of machines and a set of jobs with various predetermined routes through the machines, where the objective is to assemble a schedule of jobs that minimizes certain criteria such as makespan, maximum lateness, and total weighted tardiness. Over the past several decades, interest in meta-heuristic approaches to address JSSPs has increased due to the ability of these approaches to generate solutions which are better than those generated from heuristics alone. This article provides the classification, constraints and objective functions imposed on JSSPs that are available in the literature.

Keywords: Job-shop scheduling, classification, constraints, objective functions.

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101 The Fiscal and Macroeconomic Impacts of Reforming Energy Subsidy Policy in Malaysia

Authors: Nora Yusma Bte Mohamed Yusoff, Hussain Ali Bekhet

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The rationalization of a gradual subsidies reforms plan has been set out by the Malaysian government to achieve the high-income nation target. This paper attempts to analyze the impacts of energy subsidy reform policy on fiscal deficit and macroeconomics variables in Malaysia. The Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) Model is employed. Three simulations based on different groups of scenarios have been developed. Importantly, the overall results indicate that removal of fuel subsidy has significantly improved the real GDP and reduced the government fiscal deficit. On the other hand, the removal of the fuel subsidy has increased most of the local commodity prices, especially energy commodities. The findings of the study could provide some imperative inputs for policy makers, especially to identify the right policy mechanism. This is especially ensures the subsidy savings from subsidy removal could be transferred back into the domestic economy in the form of infrastructure development, compensation and increases in others sector output contributions towards a sustainable economic growth.

Keywords: CGE, deficit, energy, reform, subsidy.

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100 Growth Performance and Economy of Production of Pullets Fed on Different Energy Based Sources

Authors: O. A. Anjola, M. A. Adejobi, A. Ogunbameru, F. P. Agbaye, R. O. Odunukan

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This experiment was conducted for 8 weeks to evaluate the growth performance and economics of pullets fed on different dietary energy sources. A total of 300 Harco black was used for this experiment. The birds were completely randomized and divided into four diet treatment groups. Each treatment group had three replicates of twenty-five birds per replicate. Four diets containing maize, spaghetti, noodles, and biscuit was formulated to represent diet 1, 2, 3 and 4 respectively. Diet 1 containing maize is the control, while diet 2, 3, and 4 contains spaghetti, noodles, and biscuit waste meal at 100% replacement for maize on weight for weight basis. Performance indices on Feed intake, body weight, weight gain, feed conversion ratio (FCR) and economy of production were measured. Blood samples were also collected for heamatology and serum biochemistry assessment. The result of the experiment indicated that different dietary energy source fed to birds significantly (P < 0.05) affect feed intake, body weight, weight gain, and feed conversion ratio (FCR). The best cost of feed per kilogram of body weight gain was obtained in Spaghetti based diet (₦559.30). However, the best performance were obtained from diet 1(maize), it can be concluded that spaghetti as a replacement for maize in diet of pullet is most economical and profitable for production without any deleterious effects attached. Blood parameters of birds were not significantly (p > 0.05) influenced by the use of the dietary energy sources used in this experiment.

Keywords: Growth performance, spaghetti, noodles, biscuit, profit, hematology and serum biochemistry.

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99 Economics of Oil and Its Stability in the Gulf Region

Authors: Al Mutawa A. Amir, Liaqat Ali, Faisal Ali

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After the World War II, the world economy was disrupted and changed due to oil and its prices. The research in this paper presents the basic statistical features and economic characteristics of the Gulf economy. The main features of the Gulf economies and its heavy dependence on oil exports, its dualism between modern and traditional sectors and its rapidly increasing affluences are particularly emphasized.  In this context, the research in this paper discussed the problems of growth versus development and has attempted to draw the implications for the future economic development of this area.

Keywords: Oil prices, Gulf Cooperation Council, economic growth, Gulf oil.

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98 Measurement of CES Production Functions Considering Energy as an Input

Authors: Donglan Zha, Jiansong Si

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Because of its flexibility, CES attracts much interest in economic growth and programming models, and the macroeconomics or micro-macro models. This paper focuses on the development, estimating methods of CES production function considering energy as an input. We leave for future research work of relaxing the assumption of constant returns to scale, the introduction of potential input factors, and the generalization method of the optimal nested form of multi-factor production functions.

Keywords: Bias of technical change, CES production function, elasticity of substitution, energy input.

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97 Creative Mapping Landuse and Human Activities: From the Inventories of Factories to the History of the City and Citizens

Authors: R. Tamborrino, F. Rinaudo

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Digital technologies offer possibilities to effectively convert historical archives into instruments of knowledge able to provide a guide for the interpretation of historical phenomena. Digital conversion and management of those documents allow the possibility to add other sources in a unique and coherent model that permits the intersection of different data able to open new interpretations and understandings. Urban history uses, among other sources, the inventories that register human activities in a specific space (e.g. cadastres, censuses, etc.). The geographic localisation of that information inside cartographic supports allows for the comprehension and visualisation of specific relationships between different historical realities registering both the urban space and the peoples living there. These links that merge the different nature of data and documentation through a new organisation of the information can suggest a new interpretation of other related events. In all these kinds of analysis, the use of GIS platforms today represents the most appropriate answer. The design of the related databases is the key to realise the ad-hoc instrument to facilitate the analysis and the intersection of data of different origins. Moreover, GIS has become the digital platform where it is possible to add other kinds of data visualisation. This research deals with the industrial development of Turin at the beginning of the 20th century. A census of factories realized just prior to WWI provides the opportunity to test the potentialities of GIS platforms for the analysis of urban landscape modifications during the first industrial development of the town. The inventory includes data about location, activities, and people. GIS is shaped in a creative way linking different sources and digital systems aiming to create a new type of platform conceived as an interface integrating different kinds of data visualisation. The data processing allows linking this information to an urban space, and also visualising the growth of the city at that time. The sources, related to the urban landscape development in that period, are of a different nature. The emerging necessity to build, enlarge, modify and join different buildings to boost the industrial activities, according to their fast development, is recorded by different official permissions delivered by the municipality and now stored in the Historical Archive of the Municipality of Turin. Those documents, which are reports and drawings, contain numerous data on the buildings themselves, including the block where the plot is located, the district, and the people involved such as the owner, the investor, and the engineer or architect designing the industrial building. All these collected data offer the possibility to firstly re-build the process of change of the urban landscape by using GIS and 3D modelling technologies thanks to the access to the drawings (2D plans, sections and elevations) that show the previous and the planned situation. Furthermore, they access information for different queries of the linked dataset that could be useful for different research and targets such as economics, biographical, architectural, or demographical. By superimposing a layer of the present city, the past meets to the present-industrial heritage, and people meet urban history.

Keywords: Digital urban history, census, digitalisation, GIS, modelling, digital humanities.

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96 Performance Analysis of Air-Tunnel Heat Exchanger Integrated into Raft Foundation

Authors: Chien-Yeh Hsu, Yuan-Ching Chiang, Zi-Jie Chien, Sih-Li Chen

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In this study, a field experiment and performance analysis of air-tunnel heat exchanger integrated with water-filled raft foundation of residential building were performed. In order to obtain better performance, conventional applications of air-tunnel inevitably have high initial cost or issues about insufficient installation space. To improve the feasibility of air tunnel heat exchanger in high-density housing, an integrated system consisting of air pipes immersed in the water-filled raft foundation was presented, taking advantage of immense amount of water and relatively stable temperature in raft foundation of building. The foundation-integrated air tunnel was applied to a residential building located in Yilan, Taiwan, and its thermal performance was measured in the field experiment. The results indicated that the cooling potential of integrated system was close to the potential of soil-based EAHE at 2 m depth or deeper. An analytical model based on thermal resistance method was validated by measurement results, and was used to carry out the dimensioning of foundation-integrated air tunnel. The discrepancies between calculated value and measured data were less than 2.7%. In addition, the return-on-investment with regard to thermal performance and economics of the application was evaluated. Because the installation for air tunnel is scheduled in the building foundation construction, the utilization of integrated system spends less construction cost compare to the conventional earth-air tunnel.

Keywords: Air tunnel, ground heat exchanger, raft foundation, residential building.

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95 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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94 Multi-Objective Optimization of a Solar-Powered Triple-Effect Absorption Chiller for Air-Conditioning Applications

Authors: Ali Shirazi, Robert A. Taylor, Stephen D. White, Graham L. Morrison

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In this paper, a detailed simulation model of a solar-powered triple-effect LiBr–H2O absorption chiller is developed to supply both cooling and heating demand of a large-scale building, aiming to reduce the fossil fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions in building sector. TRNSYS 17 is used to simulate the performance of the system over a typical year. A combined energetic-economic-environmental analysis is conducted to determine the system annual primary energy consumption and the total cost, which are considered as two conflicting objectives. A multi-objective optimization of the system is performed using a genetic algorithm to minimize these objectives simultaneously. The optimization results show that the final optimal design of the proposed plant has a solar fraction of 72% and leads to an annual primary energy saving of 0.69 GWh and annual CO2 emissions reduction of ~166 tonnes, as compared to a conventional HVAC system. The economics of this design, however, is not appealing without public funding, which is often the case for many renewable energy systems. The results show that a good funding policy is required in order for these technologies to achieve satisfactory payback periods within the lifetime of the plant.

Keywords: Economic, environmental, multi-objective optimization, solar air-conditioning, triple-effect absorption chiller.

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93 Key Competences in Economics and Business Field: The Employers’ Side of the Story

Authors: Bruno Škrinjarić

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Rapid technological developments and increase in organizations’ interdependence on international scale are changing the traditional workplace paradigm. A key feature of knowledge based economy is that employers are looking for individuals that possess both specific academic skills and knowledge, and also capability to be proactive and respond to problems creatively and autonomously. The focus of this paper is workers with Economics and Business background and its goals are threefold: (1) to explore wide range of competences and identify which are the most important to employers; (2) to investigate the existence and magnitude of gap between required and possessed level of a certain competency; and (3) to inquire how this gap is connected with performance of a company. A study was conducted on a representative sample of Croatian enterprises during the spring of 2016. Results show that generic, rather than specific, competences are more important to employers and the gap between the relative importance of certain competence and its current representation in existing workforce is greater for generic competences than for specific. Finally, results do not support the hypothesis that this gap is correlated with firms’ performance.

Keywords: Competency gap, competency matching, key competences, firm performance.

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92 Economics of Conflict: Core Economic Dimensions of the Georgian-South Ossetian Context

Authors: V. Charaia

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This article presents SWOT analysis for Georgian - South Ossetian conflict. The research analyzes socio-economic aspects and considers future prospects for all sides including neighbor countries and regions. Also it includes the possibilities of positive intervention of neighbor countries to solve the conflict or to mitigate its negative results. The main question of the article is: What will it take to award Georgians and South Ossetians with a peace dividend?

Keywords: Conflict economics, Georgian economy, international organizations, peace building, S. Ossetian economy.

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91 Usage of Internet Technology in Financial Education and Financial Inclusion by Students of Economics Universities

Authors: B. Frączek

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The paper analyses the usage of the Internet by university students in Visegrad Countries (4V Countries) who study economic fields in their formal and informal financial education and captures the areas of untapped potential of Internet in educational processes. Higher education and training, technological readiness, and the financial market development are in the group of pillars, that are key for efficiency driven economies. These three pillars have become an inspiration to the research on using the Internet in the financial education among economic university students as the group of the best educated people in finance. The financial education is a process that allows for improving the level of financial literacy. In turn, the financial literacy it is the set of financial knowledge, skills, awareness and patterns influencing the financial decisions. The level of financial literacy influences the level of financial well-being of individuals, determines the scale of saving of households and at the same time gives the greater chance for sustainable and more predictable development of the financial market with the positive impact on economy. The financial literacy is necessary for each group of society but its appropriate level is desirable especially in respect of economics students as future participants of financial markets as well as the experts and advisors in financial decision making. The low level of financial literacy is the great problem of many target groups in both developing and developed countries and the financial education is seen as the best way of improving this situation. Also the financial inclusion plays the special role in enhancing the level of financial literacy in the aspect of education by practice as well as due to interrelation between level of financial literacy and degree of financial inclusion. Despite many initiatives under financial education, the level of financial literacy is still very low. Scientists still search for new ways of solving this problem. One of the proposal is more effective usage of the new technology in financial education, especially the Internet, because of the growing popularity of e-learning and the increasing number of Internet users, especially among young people who are called the Generation Net. Due to special role of the university students studying the economics fields for the future financial markets, students of four universities from Visegrad Countries (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia) were invited to participate in the survey. The aim of the article is to present the level and ways of using the Internet technology in financial education and indicating the so far unused or underused opportunities.

Keywords: Financial education, financial inclusion, financial literacy, usage of Internet in education.

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90 Teaching English to Engineers: Between English Language Teaching and Psychology

Authors: Irina-Ana Drobot

Abstract:

Teaching English to Engineers is part of English for Specific Purposes, a domain which is under the attention of English students especially under the current conditions of finding jobs and establishing partnerships outside Romania. The paper will analyse the existing textbooks together with the teaching strategies they adopt. Teaching English to Engineering students can intersect with domains such as psychology and cultural studies in order to teach them efficiently. Textbooks for students of ESP, ranging from those at the Faculty of Economics to those at the Faculty of Engineers, have shifted away from using specialized vocabulary, drills for grammar and reading comprehension questions and toward communicative methods and the practical use of language. At present, in Romania, grammar is neglected in favour of communicative methods. The current interest in translation studies may indicate a return to this type of method, since only translation specialists can distinguish among specialized terms and determine which are most suitable in a translation. Engineers are currently encouraged to learn English in order to do their own translations in their own field. This paper will analyse the issue of the extent to which it is useful to teach Engineering students to do translations in their field using cognitive psychology applied to language teaching, including issues such as motivation and social psychology. Teaching general English to engineering students can result in lack of interest, but they can be motivated by practical aspects which will help them in their field. This is why this paper needs to take into account an interdisciplinary approach to teaching English to Engineers.

Keywords: Cognition, ESP, motivation, psychology.

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89 Factors Influencing the Housing Price: Developers’ Perspective

Authors: Ernawati Mustafa Kamal, Hasnanywati Hassan, Atasya Osmadi

Abstract:

The housing industry is crucial for sustainable development of every country. Housing is a basic need that can enhance the quality of life. Owning a house is therefore the main aim of individuals. However, affordability has become a critical issue towards homeownership. In recent years, housing price in the main cities has increased tremendously to unaffordable level. This paper investigates factors influencing the housing price from developer’s perspective and provides recommendation on strategies to tackle this issue. Online and face-to-face survey was conducted on housing developers operating in Penang, Malaysia. The results indicate that (1) location; (2) macroeconomics factor; (3) demographic factors; (4) land/zoning and; (5) industry factors are the main factors influencing the housing price. This paper contributes towards better understanding on developers’ view on how the housing price is determined and form a basis for government to help tackle the housing affordability issue.

Keywords: Factors influencing house price, housing affordability, housing developers, Malaysia.

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88 Capital Accumulation and Unemployment in Namibia, Nigeria, and South Africa

Authors: Abubakar Dikko

Abstract:

The research investigates the causes of unemployment in Namibia, Nigeria and South Africa and the role of Capital Accumulation in reducing the unemployment profile of these economies as proposed by the post-Keynesian economics. This is conducted through extensive review of literature on the NAIRU models and focused on the post-Keynesian view of unemployment within the NAIRU framework. The NAIRU (non-accelerating inflation rate of unemployment) model has become a dominant framework used in macroeconomic analysis of unemployment. The study views the post-Keynesian economics arguments that capital accumulation is a major determinant of unemployment. Unemployment remains the fundamental socio-economic challenge facing African economies. It has been a burden to citizens of those economies. Namibia, Nigeria, and South Africa are great African nations battling with high unemployment rates. The high unemployment rate in the country led the citizens to chase away foreigners in the country claiming that they have taken away their jobs. The study proposes there is a strong relationship between capital accumulation and unemployment in Namibia, Nigeria, and South Africa, and capital accumulation is responsible for high unemployment rates in these countries. For the economies to achieve steady state level of employment and satisfactory level of economic growth and development, there is need for capital accumulation to take place. The countries in the study have been selected after a critical research and investigations. They are selected based on the following criteria; African economies with high unemployment rates above 15% and have about 40% of their workforce unemployed. This level of unemployment is the critical level of unemployment in Africa as expressed by International Labour Organization (ILO). And finally, the African countries experience a slow growth in their Gross fixed capital formation. Adequate statistical measures have been employed using a time-series analysis in the study and the results revealed that capital accumulation is the main driver of unemployment performance in the chosen African countries. An increase in the accumulation of capital causes unemployment to reduce significantly. The results of the research work will be useful and relevant to federal governments and ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) of Namibia, Nigeria and South Africa to resolve the issue of high and persistent unemployment rates in their economies which are great burden that slows growth and development of developing economies. Also, the result can be useful to World Bank, African Development Bank and International Labour Organization (ILO) in their further research and studies on how to tackle unemployment in developing and emerging economies.

Keywords: Capital accumulation, NAIRU, post-Keynesian economics, unemployment.

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87 Rethinking the Languages for Specific Purposes Syllabus in the 21st Century: Topic-Centered or Skills-Centered

Authors: A. Knezović

Abstract:

21st century has transformed the labor market landscape in a way of posing new and different demands on university graduates as well as university lecturers, which means that the knowledge and academic skills students acquire in the course of their studies should be applicable and transferable from the higher education context to their future professional careers. Given the context of the Languages for Specific Purposes (LSP) classroom, the teachers’ objective is not only to teach the language itself, but also to prepare students to use that language as a medium to develop generic skills and competences. These include media and information literacy, critical and creative thinking, problem-solving and analytical skills, effective written and oral communication, as well as collaborative work and social skills, all of which are necessary to make university graduates more competitive in everyday professional environments. On the other hand, due to limitations of time and large numbers of students in classes, the frequently topic-centered syllabus of LSP courses places considerable focus on acquiring the subject matter and specialist vocabulary instead of sufficient development of skills and competences required by students’ prospective employers. This paper intends to explore some of those issues as viewed both by LSP lecturers and by business professionals in their respective surveys. The surveys were conducted among more than 50 LSP lecturers at higher education institutions in Croatia, more than 40 HR professionals and more than 60 university graduates with degrees in economics and/or business working in management positions in mainly large and medium-sized companies in Croatia. Various elements of LSP course content have been taken into consideration in this research, including reading and listening comprehension of specialist texts, acquisition of specialist vocabulary and grammatical structures, as well as presentation and negotiation skills. The ability to hold meetings, conduct business correspondence, write reports, academic texts, case studies and take part in debates were also taken into consideration, as well as informal business communication, business etiquette and core courses delivered in a foreign language. The results of the surveys conducted among LSP lecturers will be analyzed with reference to what extent those elements are included in their courses and how consistently and thoroughly they are evaluated according to their course requirements. Their opinions will be compared to the results of the surveys conducted among professionals from a range of industries in Croatia so as to examine how useful and important they perceive the same elements of the LSP course content in their working environments. Such comparative analysis will thus show to what extent the syllabi of LSP courses meet the demands of the employment market when it comes to the students’ language skills and competences, as well as transferable skills. Finally, the findings will also be compared to the observations based on practical teaching experience and the relevant sources that have been used in this research. In conclusion, the ideas and observations in this paper are merely open-ended questions that do not have conclusive answers, but might prompt LSP lecturers to re-evaluate the content and objectives of their course syllabi.

Keywords: Languages for specific purposes (LSP), language skills, topic-centered syllabus, transferable skills.

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86 Thermodynamic Evaluation of Coupling APR1400 with a Thermal Desalination Plant

Authors: M. Gomaa Abdoelatef, Robert M. Field, Lee, Yong-Kwan

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Growing human population has placed increased demands on water supplies and spurred a heightened interest in desalination infrastructure. Key elements of the economics of desalination projects are thermal and electrical inputs. With growing concerns over use of fossil fuels to (indirectly) supply these inputs, coupling of desalination with nuclear power production represents a significant opportunity. Individually, nuclear and desalination technologies have a long history and are relatively mature. For desalination, Reverse Osmosis (RO) has the lowest energy inputs. However, the economically driven output quality of the water produced using RO, which uses only electrical inputs, is lower than the output water quality from thermal desalination plants. Therefore, modern desalination projects consider that RO should be coupled with thermal desalination technologies (MSF, MED, or MED-TVC) with attendant steam inputs to permit blending to produce various qualities of water. A large nuclear facility is well positioned to dispatch large quantities of both electrical and thermal power. This paper considers the supply of thermal energy to a large desalination facility to examine heat balance impact on the nuclear steam cycle. The APR1400 nuclear plant is selected as prototypical from both a capacity and turbine cycle heat balance perspective to examine steam supply and the impact on electrical output. Extraction points and quantities of steam are considered parametrically along with various types of thermal desalination technologies to form the basis for further evaluations of economically optimal approaches to the interface of nuclear power production with desalination projects. In our study, the thermodynamic evaluation will be executed by DE-TOP, an IAEA sponsored program. DE-TOP has capabilities to analyze power generation systems coupled to desalination plants through various steam extraction positions, taking into consideration the isolation loop between the nuclear and the thermal desalination facilities (i.e., for radiological isolation).

Keywords: APR1400, Cogeneration, Desalination, DE-TOP, IAEA, MED, MED-TVC, MSF, RO.

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85 A Blueprint for an Educational Trajectory: The Power of Discourse in Constructing “Naughty” and “Adorable” Kindergarten Students

Authors: Fernanda T. Orsati, Julie Causton

Abstract:

Discursive practices enacted by educators in kindergarten create a blueprint for how the educational trajectories of students with disabilities are constructed. This two-year ethnographic case study critically examines educators’ relationships with students considered to present challenging behaviors in one kindergarten classroom located in a predominantly White middle class school district in the Northeast of the United States. Focusing on the language and practices used by one special education teacher and three teaching assistants, this paper analyzes how teacher responses to students’ behaviors constructs and positions students over one year of kindergarten education. Using a critical discourse analysis it shows that educators understand students’ behaviors as deficit and needing consequences. This study highlights how educators’ responses reflect students' individual characteristics including family background, socioeconomics and ability status. This paper offers in depth analysis of two students’ stories, which evidenced that the language used by educators amplifies the social positioning of students within the classroom and creates a foundation for who they are constructed to be. Through exploring routine language and practices, this paper demonstrates that educators outlined a blueprint of kindergartners, which positioned students as learners in ways that became the ground for either a limited or a promising educational pathway for them.

Keywords: Behavior, early education, special education, critical discourse analysis.

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84 Well-Being Inequality Using Superimposing Satisfaction Waves: Heisenberg Uncertainty in Behavioural Economics and Econometrics

Authors: Okay Gunes

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In this article, a new method is proposed for the measuring of well-being inequality through a model composed of superimposing satisfaction waves. The displacement of households’ satisfactory state (i.e. satisfaction) is defined in a satisfaction string. The duration of the satisfactory state for a given period is measured in order to determine the relationship between utility and total satisfactory time, itself dependent on the density and tension of each satisfaction string. Thus, individual cardinal total satisfaction values are computed by way of a one-dimensional form for scalar sinusoidal (harmonic) moving wave function, using satisfaction waves with varying amplitudes and frequencies which allow us to measure wellbeing inequality. One advantage to using satisfaction waves is the ability to show that individual utility and consumption amounts would probably not commute; hence, it is impossible to measure or to know simultaneously the values of these observables from the dataset. Thus, we crystallize the problem by using a Heisenberg-type uncertainty resolution for self-adjoint economic operators. We propose to eliminate any estimation bias by correlating the standard deviations of selected economic operators; this is achieved by replacing the aforementioned observed uncertainties with households’ perceived uncertainties (i.e. corrected standard deviations) obtained through the logarithmic psychophysical law proposed by Weber and Fechner.

Keywords: Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, superimposing satisfaction waves, Weber–Fechner law, well-being inequality.

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