Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 218

Search results for: ecosystem services

218 Evaluation of Market Limitations in the Case of Ecosystem Services

Authors: Giani Gradinaru

Abstract:

Biodiversity crisis is one of the many crises that started at the turn of the millennia. Concrete form of expression is still disputed, but there is a relatively high consensus regarding the high rate of degradation and the urgent need for action. The strategy of action outlines a strong economic component, together with the recognition of market mechanisms as the most effective policies to protect biodiversity. In this context, biodiversity and ecosystem services are natural assets that play a key role in economic strategies and technological development to promote development and prosperity. Developing and strengthening policies for transition to an economy based on efficient use of resources is the way forward. To emphasize the co-viability specific to the connection economyecosystem services, scientific approach aimed on one hand how to implement policies for nature conservation and on the other hand, the concepts underlying the economic expression of ecosystem services- value, in the context of current technology. Following the analysis of business opportunities associated with changes in ecosystem services was concluded that development of market mechanisms for nature conservation is a trend that is increasingly stronger individualized within recent years. Although there are still many controversial issues that have already given rise to an obvious bias, international organizations and national governments have initiated and implemented in cooperation or independently such mechanisms. Consequently, they created the conditions for convergence between private interests and social interests of nature conservation, so there are opportunities for ongoing business development which leads, among other things, the positive effects on biodiversity. Finally, points out that markets fail to quantify the value of most ecosystem services. Existing price signals reflect at best, only a proportion of the total amount corresponding provision of food, water or fuel.

Keywords: ecosystem services, economic evaluation, nature conservation

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217 The Impact of NICTBB in Facilitating the E-Services and M-Services in Tanzania

Authors: S. Pazi, C. Chatwin

Abstract:

ICT services are a key element of communications and important for socio-economic development. In recognition of the importance of this, the Tanzanian Government started to implement a National ICT Broadband Infrastructure Fibre Optic Backbone (NICTBB) in 2009; this development was planned to be implemented in four phases using an optical dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) network technology in collaboration with the Chinese Government through the Chinese International Telecommunications Construction Corporation (CITCC) under a bilateral agreement. This paper briefly explores the NICTBB network technologies implementation, operations and Internet bandwidth costs. It also provides an in depth assessment of the delivery of ICT services such as e-services and m-services in both urban and rural areas following commissioning of the NICTBB system. Following quantitative and qualitative approaches, the study shows that there have been significant improvements in utilization efficiency, effectiveness and the reliability of the ICT service such as e-services and m-services the NICTCBB was commissioned.

Keywords: NICTBB, DWDM, Optic Fibre, Internet, ICT services, e-services, m-services.

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216 A Web Services based Architecture for NGN Services Delivery

Authors: K. Rezabeigi, A. Vafaei, N. Movahhedinia

Abstract:

The notion of Next Generation Network (NGN) is based on the Network Convergence concept which refers to integration of services (such as IT and communication services) over IP layer. As the most popular implementation of Service Oriented Architecture (SOA), Web Services technology is known to be the base for service integration. In this paper, we present a platform to deliver communication services as web services. We also implement a sample service to show the simplicity of making composite web and communication services using this platform. A Service Logic Execution Environment (SLEE) is used to implement the communication services. The proposed architecture is in agreement with Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) and also can be integrated to an Enterprise Service Bus to make a base for NGN Service Delivery Platform (SDP).

Keywords: Communication Services, SOA, Web Services, NGN, SLEE.

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215 Using Services Oriented Architecture to Improve Efficient Web-Services for Postgraduate Students

Authors: Ehab N. Alkhanak, Salimah Mokhtar

Abstract:

The main aim of this paper is to present the research findings on the solution of centralized Web-Services for students by adopting a framework and a prototype for Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) Web-Services. The current situation of students- Web-based application services has been identified and proposed an effective SOA to increase the operational efficiency of Web-Services for them it was necessary to identify the challenges in delivering a SOA technology to increase operational efficiency of Web-Services. Moreover, the SOA is an emerging concept, used for delivering efficient student SOA Web-Services. Therefore, service reusability from SOA Web-Services is provided and logically divided services into smaller services to increase reusability and modularity. In this case each service is a modular unit by itself and interoperability services.

Keywords: Services Oriented Architecture (SOA), Web-based Application services, and Web-Services.

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214 A State-Of-The-Art Review on Web Services Adaptation

Authors: M. Velasco, D. While, P. Raju, J. Krasniewicz, A. Amini, L. Hernandez-Munoz

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Web service adaptation involves the creation of adapters that solve Web services incompatibilities known as mismatches. Since the importance of Web services adaptation is increasing because of the frequent implementation and use of online Web services, this paper presents a literature review of web services to investigate the main methods of adaptation, their theoretical underpinnings and the metrics used to measure adapters performance. Eighteen publications were reviewed independently by two researchers. We found that adaptation techniques are needed to solve different types of problems that may arise due to incompatibilities in Web service interfaces, including protocols, messages, data and semantics that affect the interoperability of the services. Although adapters are non-invasive methods that can improve Web services interoperability and there are current approaches for service adaptation; there is, however, not yet one solution that fits all types of mismatches. Our results also show that only a few research projects incorporate theoretical frameworks and that metrics to measure adapters’ performance are very limited. We conclude that further research on software adaptation should improve current adaptation methods in different layers of the service interoperability and that an adaptation theoretical framework that incorporates a theoretical underpinning and measures of qualitative and quantitative performance needs to be created.

Keywords: Web services adapters, software adaptation, web services mismatches, web services interoperability.

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213 Proposal of Blue and Green Infrastructure for the Jaguaré Stream Watershed, São Paulo, Brazil

Authors: Juliana C. Alencar, Monica Ferreira do Amaral Porto

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The blue-green infrastructure in recent years has been pointed out as a possibility to increase the environmental quality of watersheds. The regulation ecosystem services brought by these areas are many, such as the improvement of the air quality of the air, water, soil, microclimate, besides helping to control the peak flows and to promote the quality of life of the population. This study proposes a blue-green infrastructure scenario for the Jaguaré watershed, located in the western zone of the São Paulo city in Brazil. Based on the proposed scenario, it was verified the impact of the adoption of the blue and green infrastructure in the control of the peak flow of the basin, the benefits for the avifauna that are also reflected in the flora and finally, the quantification of the regulation ecosystem services brought by the adoption of the scenario proposed. A survey of existing green areas and potential areas for expansion and connection of these areas to form a network in the watershed was carried out. Based on this proposed new network of green areas, the peak flow for the proposed scenario was calculated with the help of software, ABC6. Finally, a survey of the ecosystem services contemplated in the proposed scenario was made. It was possible to conclude that the blue and green infrastructure would provide several regulation ecosystem services for the watershed, such as the control of the peak flow, the connection frame between the forest fragments that promoted the environmental enrichment of these fragments, improvement of the microclimate and the provision of leisure areas for the population.

Keywords: Blue and green infrastructure, sustainable drainage, urban waters, ecosystem services.

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212 Ecosystem Model for Environmental Applications

Authors: Cristina Schreiner, Romeo Ciobanu, Marius Pislaru

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This paper aims to build a system based on fuzzy models that can be implemented in the assessment of ecological systems, to determine appropriate methods of action for reducing adverse effects on environmental and implicit the population. The model proposed provides new perspective for environmental assessment, and it can be used as a practical instrument for decision –making.

Keywords: Ecosystem model, Environmental security, Fuzzy logic, Sustainability of habitable regions.

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211 The Micro Ecosystem Restoration Mechanism Applied for Feasible Research of Lakes Eutrophication Enhancement

Authors: Ching-Tsan Tsai, Sih-Rong Chen, Chi-Hung Hsieh

Abstract:

The technique of inducing micro ecosystem restoration is one of aquatic ecology engineering methods used to retrieve the polluted water. Batch scale study, pilot plant study, and field study were carried out to observe the eutrophication using the Inducing Ecology Restorative Symbiosis Agent (IERSA) consisting mainly degraded products by using lactobacillus, saccharomycete, and phycomycete. The results obtained from the experiments of the batch scale and pilot plant study allowed us to development the parameters for the field study. A pond, 5 m to the outlet of a lake, with an area of 500 m2 and depth of 0.6-1.2 m containing about 500 tons of water was selected as a model. After the treatment with 10 mg IERSA/L water twice a week for 70 days, the micro restoration mechanisms consisted of three stages (i.e., restoration, impact maintenance, and ecology recovery experiment after impact). The COD, TN, TKN, and chlorophyll a were reduced significantly in the first week. Although the unexpected heavy rain and contaminate from sewage system might slow the ecology restoration. However, the self-cleaning function continued and the chlorophyll a reduced for 50% in one month. In the 4th week, amoeba, paramecium, rotifer, and red wriggle worm reappeared, and the number of fish flies appeared up to1000 fish fries/m3. Those results proved that inducing restorative mechanism can be applied to improve the eutrophication and to control the growth of algae in the lakes by gaining the selfcleaning through inducing and competition of microbes. The situation for growth of fishes also can reach an excellent result due to the improvement of water quality.

Keywords: Ecosystem restoration, eutrophication, lake.

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210 Formal Specification of Web Services Applications for Digital Reference Services of Library Information System

Authors: Zainab M. Musa, Nordin M. A. Rahman, Julaily A. Jusoh

Abstract:

Digital reference service is when a traditional library reference service is provided electronically. In most cases users do not get full satisfaction from using digital reference service due to variety of reasons. This paper discusses the formal specification of web services applications for digital reference services (WSDRS). WSDRS is an informal model that claims to reduce the problems of digital reference services in libraries. It uses web services technology to provide efficient digital way of satisfying users’ need in the reference section of libraries. Informal model is in natural language which is inconsistent and ambiguous that may cause difficulties to the developers of the system. In order to solve this problem we decided to convert the informal specifications into formal specifications. This is supposed to reduce the overall development time and cost. We use Z language to develop the formal model and verify it with Z/EVES theorem prover tool.

Keywords: Formal, specifications, web services, digital reference services.

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209 Dynamics of Nutrients Pool in the Baltic Sea Using the Ecosystem Model 3D-CEMBS

Authors: L. Dzierzbicka-Głowacka, M. Janecki

Abstract:

Seasonal variability of nutrients concentration in the Baltic Sea using the 3D ecosystem numerical model 3D-CEMBS has been investigated. Additionally this study shows horizontal and vertical distribution of nutrients in the Baltic Sea. Model domain is an extended Baltic Sea area divided into 600x640 horizontal grid cells. Aside from standard hydrodynamic parameters 3D-CEMBS produces modeled ecological variables such as: three types of phytoplankton, two detrital classes, dissolved oxygen and the nutrients (nitrate, ammonium, phosphate and silicate). The presented model allows prediction of parameters that describe distribution of nutrients concentration and phytoplankton biomass. 3D-CEMBS can be used to study the effect of different hydrodynamic and biogeochemical processes on distributions of these variables in a larger scale.

Keywords: ecosystem model, nutrients, Baltic Sea

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208 Semantic Web as an Enabling Technology for Better e-Services Addoption

Authors: Luka Pavlič, Marjan Heričko

Abstract:

E-services have significantly changed the way of doing business in recent years. We can, however, observe poor use of these services. There is a large gap between supply and actual eservices usage. This is why we started a project to provide an environment that will encourage the use of e-services. We believe that only providing e-service does not automatically mean consumers would use them. This paper shows the origins of our project and its current position. We discuss the decision of using semantic web technologies and their potential to improve e-services usage. We also present current knowledge base and its real-world classification. In the paper, we discuss further work to be done in the project. Current state of the project is promising.

Keywords: E-Services, E-Services Repository, Ontologies, Semantic Web

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207 Implication to Environmental Education of Indigenous Knowledge and the Ecosystem of Upland Farmers in Aklan, Philippines

Authors: Emily Arangote

Abstract:

This paper defined the association between the indigenous knowledge, cultural practices and the ecosystem its implication to the environmental education to the farmers. Farmers recognize the need for sustainability of the ecosystem they inhabit. The cultural practices of farmers on use of indigenous pest control, use of insect-repellant plants, soil management practices that suppress diseases and harmful pests and conserve soil moisture are deemed to be ecologically-friendly. Indigenous plant materials that were more drought- and pest-resistant were grown. Crop rotation was implemented with various crop seeds to increase their disease resistance. Multi-cropping, planting of perennial crops, categorization of soil and planting of appropriate crops, planting of appropriate and leguminous crops, alloting land as watershed, and preserving traditional palay seed varieties were found to be beneficial in preserving the environment. The study also found that indigenous knowledge about crops are still relevant and useful to the current generation. This ensured the sustainability of our environment and incumbent on policy makers and educators to support and preserve for generations yet to come.

Keywords: Cultural practices, ecosystem, environmental education, indigenous knowledge.

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206 Transformation of the Business Model in an Occupational Health Care Company Embedded in an Emerging Personal Data Ecosystem: A Case Study in Finland

Authors: Tero Huhtala, Minna Pikkarainen, Saila Saraniemi

Abstract:

Information technology has long been used as an enabler of exchange for goods and services. Services are evolving from generic to personalized, and the reverse use of customer data has been discussed in both academia and industry for the past few years. This article presents the results of an empirical case study in the area of preventive health care services. The primary data were gathered in workshops, in which future personal data-based services were conceptualized by analyzing future scenarios from a business perspective. The aim of this study is to understand business model transformation in emerging personal data ecosystems. The work was done as a case study in the context of occupational healthcare. The results have implications to theory and practice, indicating that adopting personal data management principles requires transformation of the business model, which, if successfully managed, may provide access to more resources, potential to offer better value, and additional customer channels. These advantages correlate with the broadening of the business ecosystem. Expanding the scope of this study to include more actors would improve the validity of the research. The results draw from existing literature and are based on findings from a case study and the economic properties of the healthcare industry in Finland.

Keywords: Ecosystem, business model, personal data, preventive healthcare.

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205 Business Model Topology in Emerging Business Ecosystem

Authors: Olga Novikova, Timo Vuori

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This paper describes topology of business models in market ecosystem of the emerging electric mobility industry. The business model topology shows that firm-s participation in the ecosystem is associated with different requirements on resources and capabilities, and different levels of risk. Business model concept is used together with concepts of networked value creation and shows that firms can achieve higher levels of sustainable advantage by cooperation, not competition. Hybrid business models provide companies a viable alternative possibility for participation in the market ecosystem.

Keywords: Business model, ecosystem, topology.

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204 Exploring Structure of Mobile Ecosystem: Inter-Industry Network Analysis Approach

Authors: Yongyoon Suh, Chulhyun Kim, Moon-soo Kim

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As increasing importance of symbiosis and cooperation among mobile communication industries, the mobile ecosystem has been especially highlighted in academia and practice. The structure of mobile ecosystem is quite complex and the ecological role of actors is important to understand that structure. In this respect, this study aims to explore structure of mobile ecosystem in the case of Korea using inter-industry network analysis. Then, the ecological roles in mobile ecosystem are identified using centrality measures as a result of network analysis: degree of centrality, closeness, and betweenness. The result shows that the manufacturing and service industries are separate. Also, the ecological roles of some actors are identified based on the characteristics of ecological terms: keystone, niche, and dominator. Based on the result of this paper, we expect that the policy makers can formulate the future of mobile industry and healthier mobile ecosystem can be constructed.

Keywords: Mobile ecosystem, structure, ecological roles, network analysis, network index.

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203 Limitations of Selected e-Governance Services in India: Policy Change as Solution for Experience Enhancement of Citizen Services

Authors: Chaitanya Vyas

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This paper identifies limitations of existing two e- Governance services viz. railway ticket booking and passport service in India. The comparison has been made as to how in the past these two citizen services were operating manually and how these services are taken online via e-Governance. Different e-Governance projects, investment aspects, and role of corporate are discussed. For Indian Railway online ticketing a comparison has been made between state run booking website and popular private firm run booking websites. For passport service, observations through personal visit to passport center is described. Suggestions are made to improve these services further to improve citizen service experiences.

Keywords: e-Governance, citizen services, Indian Railways, passport.

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202 The Internet of Things Ecosystem: Survey of the Current Landscape, Identity Relationship Management, Multifactor Authentication Mechanisms, and Underlying Protocols

Authors: Nazli W. Hardy

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A critical component in the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem is the need for secure and appropriate transmission, processing, and storage of the data. Our current forms of authentication, and identity and access management do not suffice because they are not designed to service cohesive, integrated, interconnected devices, and service applications. The seemingly endless opportunities of IoT are in fact circumscribed on multiple levels by concerns such as trust, privacy, security, loss of control, and related issues. This paper considers multi-factor authentication (MFA) mechanisms and cohesive identity relationship management (IRM) standards. It also surveys messaging protocols that are appropriate for the IoT ecosystem.

Keywords: Survey of internet of things ecosystem, protocols, identity relation management, multifactor authentication.

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201 Event Monitoring Web Services for Heterogeneous Information Systems

Authors: Arne Koschel, Irina Astrova

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Heterogeneity has to be taken into account when integrating a set of existing information sources into a distributed information system that are nowadays often based on Service- Oriented Architectures (SOA). This is also particularly applicable to distributed services such as event monitoring, which are useful in the context of Event Driven Architectures (EDA) and Complex Event Processing (CEP). Web services deal with this heterogeneity at a technical level, also providing little support for event processing. Our central thesis is that such a fully generic solution cannot provide complete support for event monitoring; instead, source specific semantics such as certain event types or support for certain event monitoring techniques have to be taken into account. Our core result is the design of a configurable event monitoring (Web) service that allows us to trade genericity for the exploitation of source specific characteristics. It thus delivers results for the areas of SOA, Web services, CEP and EDA.

Keywords: ECA, CEP, SOA, and Web services.

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200 Collection of Untraditionally Developed Academic IT Services in Eastern Europe

Authors: Rihards Balodis, Inara Opmane

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Deep and radical social reforms of the last century-s nineties in many Eastern European countries caused changes in Information Technology-s (IT) field. Inefficient information technologies were rapidly replaced with forefront IT solutions, e.g., in Eastern European countries there is a high level penetration of qualitative high-speed Internet. The authors have taken part in the introduction of those changes in Latvia-s leading IT research institute. Grounding on their experience authors in this paper offer an IT services based model for analysis the mentioned changes- and development processes in the higher education and research fields, i.e., for research e-infrastructure-s development. Compare to the international practice such services were developed in Eastern Europe in an untraditional way, which provided swift and positive technological changes.

Keywords: Computing, data networking, e-infrastructure, IT services.

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199 Determinants of E-Government Services Adoption from the African Students’ Perspective

Authors: Isaac Kofi Mensah, Jianing Mi, Cheng Feng

Abstract:

The patronage of e-government services (demand side of e-government) is vital to the successful implementation of e-government initiatives. The purpose of this study is to explore the predictors determining the willingness of African students in China to adopt and use e-government services. The Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT) will be used as the theoretical foundation for this research. Research instrument will be developed and administered to 500 African students in China. Factors such as performance expectancy, effort expectancy, social influence, facilitating conditions and culture will be investigated to determine its significant impact on the willingness to use e-government services. This study is a research in progress. The outcome of this study will provide valuable recommendations to improve the provision of public services through e-government.

Keywords: E-government, e-government services, predictors UTAUT.

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198 Resource Discovery in Web-Services Based Grids

Authors: Damandeep Kaur, Jyotsna Sengupta

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A Web-services based grid infrastructure is evolving to be readily available in the near future. In this approach, the Web services are inherited (encapsulated or functioned) into the same existing Grid services class. In practice there is not much difference between the existing Web and grid infrastructure. Grid services emerged as stateful web services. In this paper, we present the key components of web-services based grid and also how the resource discovery is performed on web-services based grid considering resource discovery, as a critical service, to be provided by any type of grid.

Keywords: Web services, resource discovery, grid computing, OGSA.

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197 Improving E-Government Services for Non- English Speaking Background (NESB) Communities in Australia

Authors: M. Mohammad, Y-C Lan

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Australian government agencies have a natural desire to provide migrants a wide range of opportunities. Consequently, government online services should be equally available to migrants with a non-English speaking background (NESB). Despite the commendable efforts of governments and local agencies in Australia to provide such services, in reality, many NESB communities are not taking advantage of these services. This article–based on an extensive case study regarding the use of online government services by the Arabic NESB community in Australia–reports on the possible reasons for this issue, as well as suggestions for improvement. The conclusion is that Australia should implement ICT-based or e-government policies, programmes, and services that more accurately reflect migrant cultures and languages so that migrant integration can be more fully accomplished. Specifically, this article presents an NESB Model that adopts the value of usercentricity or a more individual-focused approach to government online services in Australia.

Keywords: Barriers to use, e-government, ICT, NESB community, online services.

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196 Spatial Services in Cloud Environment

Authors: Sašo Pečnik, Borut Žalik

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Cloud Computing is an approach that provides computation and storage services on-demand to clients over the network, independent of device and location. In the last few years, cloud computing became a trend in information technology with many companies that transfer their business processes and applications in the cloud. Cloud computing with service oriented architecture has contributed to rapid development of Geographic Information Systems. Open Geospatial Consortium with its standards provides the interfaces for hosted spatial data and GIS functionality to integrated GIS applications. Furthermore, with the enormous processing power, clouds provide efficient environment for data intensive applications that can be performed efficiently, with higher precision, and greater reliability. This paper presents our work on the geospatial data services within the cloud computing environment and its technology. A cloud computing environment with the strengths and weaknesses of the geographic information system will be introduced. The OGC standards that solve our application interoperability are highlighted. Finally, we outline our system architecture with utilities for requesting and invoking our developed data intensive applications as a web service.

Keywords: Cloud Computing, Geographic Information System, Open Geospatial Consortium, Interoperability, Spatial data, Web- Services.

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195 The Importance of Cultural Adaptation of B2C E-Services Design in Germany

Authors: Rasha Alhendawi, Kyrill Meyer

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This research will give the introductory ideas for cultural adaption of B2C E-Service design in Germany. By the intense competition of E-Service development, many companies have realized the importance of understanding the emotional and cultural characteristics of their customers. Ignoring customers’ needs and requirements throughout the E-Service design can lead to faults, mistakes, and gaps. The term of E-Service usability now is changed not only to develop high quality E-Services, but also to be extended to include customer satisfaction and provide for them to feel local.

Keywords: Human Computer Interaction (HCI), Usability, Cultural usability, E-Services, Business-to-Consumer (B2C), EServices.

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194 Achievements of Healthcare Services Vis-À-Vis the Millennium Development Goals Targets: Evidence from Pakistan

Authors: Saeeda Batool, Ather Maqsood Ahmed

Abstract:

This study investigates the impact of public healthcare facilities and socio-economic circumstances on the status of child health in Pakistan. The complete analysis is carried out in correspondence with fourth and sixth millennium development goals. Further, the health variables chosen are also inherited from targeted indicators of the mentioned goals (MDGs). Trends in the Human Opportunity Index (HOI) for both health inequalities and coverage are analyzed using the Pakistan Social and Living Standards Measurement (PLSM) data set for 2001-02 to 2012-13 at the national and provincial level. To reveal the relative importance of each circumstance in achieving the targeted values for child health, Shorrocks decomposition is applied on HOI. The annual point average growth rate of HOI is used to simulate the time period for the achievement of target set by MDGs and universal access also. The results indicate an improvement in HOI for a reduction in child mortality rates from 52.1% in 2001-02 to 67.3% in 2012-13, which confirms the availability of healthcare opportunities to a larger segment of society. Similarly, immunization against measles and other diseases such as Diphtheria, Polio, Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG), and Hepatitis has also registered an improvement from 51.6% to 69.9% during the period of study at the national level. On a positive note, no gender disparity has been found for child health indicators and that health outcome is mostly affected by the parental and geographical features and availability of health infrastructure. However, the study finds that this achievement has been uneven across provinces. Pakistan is not only lagging behind in achieving its health goals, disappointingly with the current rate of health care provision, but it will take many additional years to achieve its targets.

Keywords: Socio-economic circumstances, unmet MDGs, public healthcare services, child and infant mortality.

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193 Optimising Business Rules in the Services Sector

Authors: Alan Dormer

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Business rules are widely used within the services sector. They provide consistency and allow relatively unskilled staff to process complex transactions correctly. But there are many examples where the rules themselves have an impact on the costs and profits of an organisation. Financial services, transport and human services are areas where the rules themselves can impact the bottom line in a predictable way. If this is the case, how can we find that set of rules that maximise profit, performance or customer service, or any other key performance indicators? The manufacturing, energy and process industries have embraced mathematical optimisation techniques to improve efficiency, increase production and so on. This paper explores several real world (but simplified) problems in the services sector and shows how business rules can be optimised. It also examines the similarities and differences between the service and other sectors, and how optimisation techniques could be used to deliver similar benefits.

Keywords: Business rules, services, optimisation.

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192 Examination of Pre-Tender Budgeting Techniques for Mechanical and Electrical Services in Malaysia

Authors: Ganiyu Amuda Yusuf, Sarajul Fikri Mohamed

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The procurement and cost management approach adopted for mechanical and electrical (M&E) services in Malaysian construction industry have been criticized for its inefficiency. The study examined early cost estimating practices adopted for mechanical and electrical services (M&E) in Malaysia so as to understand the level of compliance of the current techniques with best practices. The methodology adopted for the study is a review of bidding documents used on both completed and on – going building projects awarded between 2008 – 2010 under 9th Malaysian Plan. The analysis revealed that, M&E services cost cannot be reliably estimated at pre-contract stage; the bidding techniques adopted for M&E services failed to provide uniform basis for contractors to submit tender; detailed measurement of items were not made which could complicate post contract cost control and financial management. The paper concluded that, there is need to follow a structured approach in determining the pre-contract cost estimate for M&E services which will serve as a virile tool for post contract cost control.

Keywords: Cost Management, Mechanical and Electrical Services, Procurement, Standard Method of Measurement

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191 Electronic Government Services Adoption from Multi-Nationalities Perspectives

Authors: Isaac Kofi Mensah, Jianing Mi, Cheng Feng

Abstract:

Electronic government is the application of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) by the government to improve public service delivery to citizens and businesses. The purpose of this study is to investigate factors influencing the adoption and use of e-government services from different nationalities perspectives. The Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) will be used as the theoretical framework for the study. A questionnaire would be developed and administered to 500 potential respondents who are students from different nationalities in China. Predictors such as perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, computer self-efficacy, trust in both the internet and government, social influence and perceived service quality would be examined with regard to their impact on the intention to use e-government services. This research is currently at the design and implementation stage. The completion of this study will provide useful insights into understanding factors impacting the decision to use e-government services from a cross and multi nationalities perspectives.

Keywords: Different nationalities, e-government, e-government services, technology acceptance model.

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190 Modeling Brand Alliance Effects Professional Services

Authors: Kristina Maiksteniene

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Various formal and informal brand alliances are being formed in professional service firms. Professional service corporate brand is heavily dependent on brands of professional employees who comprise them, and professional employee brands are in turn dependent on the corporate brand. Prior work provides limited scientific evidence of brand alliance effects in professional service area – i.e., how professional service corporate-employee brand allies are affected by an alliance, what are brand attitude effects after alliance formation and how these effects vary with different strengths of an ally. Scientific literature analysis and theoretical modeling are the main methods of the current study. As a result, a theoretical model is constructed for estimating spillover effects of professional service corporate-employee brand alliances and for comparison among different professional service firm expertise practice models – from “brains" to “procedure" model. The resulting theoretical model lays basis for future experimental studies.

Keywords: Brand alliances, professional services, corporatebrand, employee brand.

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189 Challenges of e-Government Services Adoption in Saudi Arabia from an e-Ready Citizen Perspective

Authors: Mohammed Alshehri, Steve Drew

Abstract:

More and more governments around the world are introducing e-government as a means of reducing costs, improving services, saving time and increasing effectiveness and efficiency in the public sector Therefore e-government has been identified as one of the top priorities for Saudi government and all its agencies. However, the adoption of e-government is facing many challenges and barriers such as technological, cultural, organizational, and social issues which must be considered and treated carefully by any government contemplating its adoption. This paper reports on a pilot study amongst online (e-ready) citizens to identify the challenges and barriers that affect the adoption of e-government services especially from their perspective in Saudi society. Based on the analysis of data collected from an online survey the researcher was able to identify some of the important barriers and challenges from the e-ready citizen perspective. As a result, this study has generated a list of possible strategies to move towards successful adoption of egovernment services in Saudi Arabia.

Keywords: Challenges, E-government services, adoption, SaudiArabia

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