Search results for: ISO/IEC 17025:2017
Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 81

Search results for: ISO/IEC 17025:2017

81 Disparities versus Similarities: WHO GPPQCL and ISO/IEC 17025:2017 International Standards for Quality Management Systems in Pharmaceutical Laboratories

Authors: M. A. Okezue, K. L. Clase, S. R. Byrn, P. Shivanand

Abstract:

Medicines regulatory authorities expect pharmaceutical companies and contract research organizations to seek ways to certify that their laboratory control measurements are reliable. Establishing and maintaining laboratory quality standards are essential in ensuring the accuracy of test results. ‘ISO/IEC 17025:2017’ and ‘WHO Good Practices for Pharmaceutical Quality Control Laboratories (GPPQCL)’ are two quality standards commonly employed in developing laboratory quality systems. A review was conducted on the two standards to elaborate on areas on convergence and divergence. The goal was to understand how differences in each standard's requirements may influence laboratories' choices as to which document is easier to adopt for quality systems. A qualitative review method compared similar items in the two standards while mapping out areas where there were specific differences in the requirements of the two documents. The review also provided a detailed description of the clauses and parts covering management and technical requirements in these laboratory standards. The review showed that both documents share requirements for over ten critical areas covering objectives, infrastructure, management systems, and laboratory processes. There were, however, differences in standard expectations where GPPQCL emphasizes system procedures for planning and future budgets that will ensure continuity. Conversely, ISO 17025 was more focused on the risk management approach to establish laboratory quality systems. Elements in the two documents form common standard requirements to assure the validity of laboratory test results that promote mutual recognition. The ISO standard currently has more global patronage than GPPQCL.

Keywords: ISO/IEC 17025:2017, laboratory standards, quality control, WHO GPPQCL

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80 Estimation of Uncertainty of Thermal Conductivity Measurement with Single Laboratory Validation Approach

Authors: Saowaluck Ukrisdawithid

Abstract:

The thermal conductivity of thermal insulation materials are measured by Heat Flow Meter (HFM) apparatus. The components of uncertainty are complex and difficult on routine measurement by modelling approach. In this study, uncertainty of thermal conductivity measurement was estimated by single laboratory validation approach. The within-laboratory reproducibility was 1.1%. The standard uncertainty of method and laboratory bias by using SRM1453 expanded polystyrene board was dominant at 1.4%. However, it was assessed that there was no significant bias. For sample measurement, the sources of uncertainty were repeatability, density of sample and thermal conductivity resolution of HFM. From this approach to sample measurements, the combined uncertainty was calculated. In summary, the thermal conductivity of sample, polystyrene foam, was reported as 0.03367 W/m·K ± 3.5% (k = 2) at mean temperature 23.5 °C. The single laboratory validation approach is simple key of routine testing laboratory for estimation uncertainty of thermal conductivity measurement by using HFM, according to ISO/IEC 17025-2017 requirements. These are meaningful for laboratory competent improvement, quality control on products, and conformity assessment.

Keywords: Single laboratory validation approach, within-laboratory reproducibility, method and laboratory bias, certified reference material.

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79 Intensity Analysis to Link Changes in Land-Use Pattern in the Abuakwa North and South Municipalities, Ghana, from 1986 to 2017

Authors: Isaac Kwaku Adu, Jacob Doku Tetteh, John Joseph Puthenkalam, Kwabena Effah Antwi

Abstract:

The continuous increase in population implies increase in food demand. There is, therefore, the need to increase agricultural production and other forest products to ensure food security and economic development. This paper employs the three-level intensity analysis to assess the total change of land-use in two-time intervals (1986-2002 and 2002-2017), the net change and swap as well as gross gains and losses in the two intervals. The results revealed that the overall change in the 31-year period was greater in the second period (2002-2017). Agriculture and forest categories lost in the first period while the other land class gained. However, in the second period agriculture and built-up increased greatly while forest, water bodies and thick bushes/shrubland experienced loss. An assessment revealed a reduction of forest in both periods but was greater in the second period and expansion of agricultural land was recorded as population increases. The pixels gaining built-up targeted agricultural land in both intervals, it also targeted thick bushes/shrubland and waterbody in the second period only. Built-up avoided forest in both intervals as well as waterbody and thick bushes/shrubland. To help in developing the best land-use strategies/policies, a further validation of the social factors is necessary.

Keywords: Agricultural land-use, forest, intensity analysis, land-cover change, sustainable land-use.

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78 Assessment of the Efficacy of Oral Vaccination of Wild Canids and Stray Dogs against Rabies in Azerbaijan

Authors: E. N. Hasanov, K. Y. Yusifova, M. A. Ali

Abstract:

Rabies is a zoonotic disease that causes acute encephalitis in domestic and wild carnivores. The goal of this investigation was to analyze the data on oral vaccination of wild canids and stray dogs in Azerbaijan. Before the start of vaccination campaign conducted by the IDEA (International Dialogue for Environmental Action) Animal Care Center (IACC), all rabies cases in Azerbaijan for the period of 2017-2020 were analyzed. So, 30 regions for oral immunization with the Rabadrop vaccine were selected. In total, 95.9 thousand doses of baits were scattered in 30 regions, 970 (0.97%) remained intact. In addition, a campaign to sterilize and vaccinate stray dogs and cats undoubtedly had a positive impact on reducing the dynamics of rabies incidence. During the period 2017-2020, 2,339 dogs and 2,962 cats were sterilized and vaccinated under this program. It can be noted that the risk of rabies infection can be reduced through special preventive measures against disease reservoirs, which include oral immunization of wild and stray animals.

Keywords: Rabies, vaccination, oral immunization, wild canids, stray dogs, vaccine, disease reservoirs.

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77 Evaluation of the Execution Effect of the Minimum Grain Purchase Price in Rural Areas

Authors: Zhaojun Wang, Zongdi Sun, Yongjie Chen, Manman Chen, Linghui Wang

Abstract:

This paper uses the analytic hierarchy process to study the execution effect of the minimum purchase price of grain in different regions and various grain crops. Firstly, for different regions, five indicators including grain yield, grain sown area, gross agricultural production, grain consumption price index, and disposable income of rural residents were selected to construct an evaluation index system. We collect data of six provinces including Hebei Province, Heilongjiang Province and Shandong Province from 2006 to 2017. Then, the judgment matrix is constructed, and the hierarchical single ordering and consistency test are carried out to determine the scoring standard for the minimum purchase price of grain. The ranking of the execution effect from high to low is: Heilongjiang Province, Shandong Province, Hebei Province, Guizhou Province, Shaanxi Province, and Guangdong Province. Secondly, taking Shandong Province as an example, we collect the relevant data of sown area and yield of cereals, beans, potatoes and other crops from 2006 to 2017. The weight of area and yield index is determined by expert scoring method. And the average sown area and yield of cereals, beans and potatoes in 2006-2017 were calculated, respectively. On this basis, according to the sum of products of weights and mean values, the execution effects of different grain crops are determined. It turns out that among the cereals, the minimum purchase price had the best execution effect on paddy, followed by wheat and finally maize. Moreover, among major categories of crops, cereals perform best, followed by beans and finally potatoes. Lastly, countermeasures are proposed for different regions, various categories of crops, and different crops of the same category.

Keywords: Analytic hierarchy process, grain yield, grain sown area, minimum grain purchase price.

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76 Glorification Trap in Combating Human Trafficking in Indonesia: An Application of Three-Dimensional Model of Anti-Trafficking Policy

Authors: M. Kosandi, V. Susanti, N. I. Subono, E. Kartini

Abstract:

This paper discusses the risk of glorification trap in combating human trafficking, as it is shown in the case of Indonesia. Based on a research on Indonesian combat against trafficking in 2017-2018, this paper shows the tendency of misinterpretation and misapplication of the Indonesian anti-trafficking law into misusing the law for glorification, to create an image of certain extent of achievement in combating human trafficking. The objective of this paper is to explain the persistent occurrence of human trafficking crimes despite the significant progress of anti-trafficking efforts of Indonesian government. The research was conducted in 2017-2018 by qualitative approach through observation, depth interviews, discourse analysis, and document study, applying the three-dimensional model for analyzing human trafficking in the source country. This paper argues that the drive for glorification of achievement in the combat against trafficking has trapped Indonesian government in the loop of misinterpretation, misapplication, and misuse of the anti-trafficking law. In return, the so-called crime against humanity remains high and tends to increase in Indonesia.

Keywords: Human trafficking, anti-trafficking policy, transnational crime, source country, glorification trap.

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75 Person-Environment Fit (PE Fit): Evidence from Brazil

Authors: Jucelia Appio, Danielle Deimling De Carli, Bruno Henrique Rocha Fernandes, Nelson Natalino Frizon

Abstract:

The purpose of this paper is to investigate if there are positive and significant correlations between the dimensions of Person-Environment Fit (Person-Job, Person-Organization, Person-Group and Person-Supervisor) at the “Best Companies to Work for” in Brazil in 2017. For that, a quantitative approach was used with a descriptive method being defined as a research sample the "150 Best Companies to Work for", according to data base collected in 2017 and provided by Fundação Instituto of Administração (FIA) of the University of São Paulo (USP). About the data analysis procedures, asymmetry and kurtosis, factorial analysis, Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin (KMO) tests, Bartlett sphericity and Cronbach's alpha were used for the 69 research variables, and as a statistical technique for the purpose of analyzing the hypothesis, Pearson's correlation analysis was performed. As a main result, we highlight that there was a positive and significant correlation between the dimensions of Person-Environment Fit, corroborating the H1 hypothesis that there is a positive and significant correlation between Person-Job Fit, Person-Organization Fit, Person-Group Fit and Person-Supervisor Fit.

Keywords: Human resource management, person-environment fit, strategic people management, best companies to work for.

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74 Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer in Ha’il Region in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: A Clinicopathological Study

Authors: Laila Seada, Nouf Al Gharbi, Shaimaa Dawa

Abstract:

Although skin cancers are prevalent worldwide, it is uncommon in Ha’il region in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, mostly non-melanoma sub-type. During a 4-year period from 2014 to 2017, out of a total of 120 cases of skin lesions, 29 non-melanoma cancers were retrieved from histopathology files obtained from King Khalid Hospital. As part of the study, all cases of skin cancer diagnosed during 2014 -2017 have been revised and the clinicopathological data recorded. The results show that Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) was the most common neoplasm (36%), followed by cutaneous lymphomas (mostly mycosis fungoides 25%), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) (21%) and dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP) (11%). Only one case of metastatic carcinoma was recorded. BCC nodular type was the most prevalent, with a mean age 57.6 years and mean size 2.73 cm. SCC was mostly grade 2, with mean size 1.9 cm and an older mean age of 72.3 cm. Increased size of lesion positively correlated with older age (p = 0.001). Non-melanoma skin cancer in Ha’il region is not frequently encountered. BCC is the most frequent followed by cutaneous T-cell lymphomas and SCC. The findings in this study were in accordance with other parts of, but much lower than other parts of the world.

Keywords: Non melanoma skin cancer, Hail Region, histopathology, BCC.

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73 Program of Health/Safety Integration and the Total Worker Health Concept in the Improvement of Absenteeism of the Work Accommodation Management

Authors: L. R. Ferreira, R. Biscaro, C. C. Danziger, C. M. Galhardi, L. C. Biscaro, R. C. Biscaro, I. S. Vasconcelos, L. C. R. Ferreira, R. Reis, L. H. Oliveira

Abstract:

Introduction: There is a worldwide trend for the employer to be aware of investing in health promotion that goes beyond occupational hygiene approaches with the implementation of a comprehensive program with integration between occupational health and safety, and social/psychosocial responsibility in the workplace. Work accommodation is a necessity in most companies as it allows the worker to return to its function respecting its physical limitations. This study had the objective to verify if the integration of health and safety in the companies, with the inclusion of the concept of TWH promoted by an occupational health service has impacted in the management of absenteeism of workers in work accommodation. Method: A retrospective and paired cohort study was used, in which the impact of the implementation of the Program for the Health/Safety Integration and Total Worker Health Concept (PHSITWHC) was evaluated using the indices of absenteeism, health attestations, days and hours of sick leave of workers that underwent job accommodation/rehabilitation. This was a cohort study and the data were collected from January to September of 2017, prior to the initiation of the integration program, and compared with the data obtained from January to September of 2018, after the implementation of the program. For the statistical analysis, the student's t-test was used, with statistically significant differences being made at p < 0.05. Results: The results showed a 35% reduction in the number of absenteeism rate in 2018 compared to the same period in 2017. There was also a significant reduction in the total numbers of days of attestations/absences (mean of 2,8) as well as days of attestations, absence and sick leaves (mean of 5,2) in 2018 data after the implementation of PHSITWHC compared to 2017 data, means of 4,3 and 25,1, respectively, prior to the program. Conclusion: It can be concluded that the inclusion of the PHSITWHC was associated with a reduction in the rate of absenteeism of workers that underwent job accommodation. It was observed that, once health and safety were approached and integrated with the inclusion of the TWH concept, it was possible to reduce absenteeism, and improve worker’s quality of life and wellness, and work accommodation management.

Keywords: Absenteeism, health/safety integration, work accommodation management, total worker health.

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72 Participation in IAEA Proficiency Test to Analyse Cobalt, Strontium and Caesium in Seawater Using Direct Counting and Radiochemical Techniques

Authors: S. Visetpotjanakit, C. Khrautongkieo

Abstract:

Radiation monitoring in the environment and foodstuffs is one of the main responsibilities of Office of Atoms for Peace (OAP) as the nuclear regulatory body of Thailand. The main goal of the OAP is to assure the safety of the Thai people and environment from any radiological incidents. Various radioanalytical methods have been developed to monitor radiation and radionuclides in the environmental and foodstuff samples. To validate our analytical performance, several proficiency test exercises from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have been performed. Here, the results of a proficiency test exercise referred to as the Proficiency Test for Tritium, Cobalt, Strontium and Caesium Isotopes in Seawater 2017 (IAEA-RML-2017-01) are presented. All radionuclides excepting ³H were analysed using various radioanalytical methods, i.e. direct gamma-ray counting for determining ⁶⁰Co, ¹³⁴Cs and ¹³⁷Cs and developed radiochemical techniques for analysing ¹³⁴Cs, ¹³⁷Cs using AMP pre-concentration technique and 90Sr using di-(2-ethylhexyl) phosphoric acid (HDEHP) liquid extraction technique. The analysis results were submitted to IAEA. All results passed IAEA criteria, i.e. accuracy, precision and trueness and obtained ‘Accepted’ statuses. These confirm the data quality from the OAP environmental radiation laboratory to monitor radiation in the environment.

Keywords: International atomic energy agency, proficiency test, radiation monitoring, seawater.

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71 The Design of Safe Spaces in Healthcare Facilities Vulnerable to Tornado Impact in Central US

Authors: Lucy Ampaw-Asiedu, Terri R. Norton

Abstract:

In the wake of recent disasters happening around the world such as earthquake in Italy (January, 2017); hurricanes in the United States (US) (September 2016 and September 2017); and compounding disasters in Haiti (September 2010 and September 2016); to our best knowledge, never has the world seen the need to work on preemptive rather than reactionary measures to salvage this situation than now. Tornadoes are natural hazards that mostly affect mid-western and central states in the US. Tornadoes, like all natural hazards such as hurricanes, earthquakes, floods and others, are very destructive and result in massive destruction to homes, cause billions of dollars in damage and claims many lives. Healthcare facilities in general are vulnerable to disasters, and therefore, the safety of patients, health workers and those who come in to seek shelter should be a priority. The focus of this study is to assess disaster management measures instituted by healthcare facilities. Thus, the sole aim of the study is to examine the vulnerabilities and the design of safe spaces in healthcare facilities in Central US. Objectives that guide the study are to primarily identify the impacts of tornadoes in hospitals and to assess the structural design or specifications of safe spaces. St. John’s Regional Medical Center, now Mercy Hospital in Joplin, is used as a case study. Preliminary results show that the lateral base shear of the proposed design to be 684.24 ton (1508.49kip) for the safe space. Findings from this work will be used to make recommendations about the design of safe spaces for health care facilities in Central US.

Keywords: Disaster management, safe spaces, structural design, tornado, vulnerability.

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

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

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

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

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69 Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises, Flash Flooding and Organisational Resilience Capacity: Qualitative Findings on Implications of the Catastrophic 2017 Flash Flood Event in Mandra, Greece

Authors: Antonis Skouloudis, Georgios Deligiannakis, Panagiotis Vouros, Konstantinos Evangelinos, Ioannis Nikolaou

Abstract:

On November 15th, 2017, a catastrophic flash flood devastated the city of Mandra in Central Greece, resulting in 24 fatalities and extensive damages to the built environment and infrastructure. It was Greece’s deadliest and most destructive flood event for the past 40 years. In this paper, we examine the consequences of this event to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) operating in Mandra during the flood event, which were affected by the floodwaters to varying extents. In this context, we conducted semi-structured interviews with business owners-managers of 45 SMEs located in flood inundated areas and are still active nowadays, based on an interview guide that spanned 27 topics. The topics pertained to the disaster experience of the business and business owners-managers, knowledge and attitudes towards climate change and extreme weather, aspects of disaster preparedness and related assistance needs. Our findings reveal that the vast majority of the affected businesses experienced heavy damages in equipment and infrastructure or total destruction, which resulted in business interruption from several weeks up to several months. Assistance from relatives or friends helped for the damage repairs and business recovery, while state compensations were deemed insufficient compared to the extent of the damages. Most interviewees pinpoint flooding as one of the most critical risks, and many connect it with the climate crisis. However, they are either not willing or unable to apply property-level prevention measures in their businesses due to cost considerations or complex and cumbersome bureaucratic processes. In all cases, the business owners are fully aware of the flood hazard implications, and since the recovery from the event, they have engaged in basic mitigation measures and contingency plans in case of future flood events. Such plans include insurance contracts whenever possible (as the vast majority of the affected SMEs were uninsured at the time of the 2017 event) as well as simple relocations of critical equipment within their property. The study offers fruitful insights on latent drivers and barriers of SMEs’ resilience capacity to flash flooding. In this respect, findings such as ours, highlighting tensions that underpin behavioural responses and experiences, can feed into: a) bottom-up approaches for devising actionable and practical guidelines, manuals and/or standards on business preparedness to flooding, and, ultimately, b) policy-making for an enabling environment towards a flood-resilient SME sector.

Keywords: Flash flood, small and medium-sized enterprises, organisational resilience capacity, disaster preparedness, qualitative study.

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68 Risk Based Maintenance Planning for Loading Equipment in Underground Hard Rock Mine: Case Study

Authors: Sidharth Talan, Devendra Kumar Yadav, Yuvraj Singh Rajput, Subhajit Bhattacharjee

Abstract:

Mining industry is known for its appetite to spend sizeable capital on mine equipment. However, in the current scenario, the mining industry is challenged by daunting factors of non-uniform geological conditions, uneven ore grade, uncontrollable and volatile mineral commodity prices and the ever increasing quest to optimize the capital and operational costs. Thus, the role of equipment reliability and maintenance planning inherits a significant role in augmenting the equipment availability for the operation and in turn boosting the mine productivity. This paper presents the Risk Based Maintenance (RBM) planning conducted on mine loading equipment namely Load Haul Dumpers (LHDs) at Vedanta Resources Ltd subsidiary Hindustan Zinc Limited operated Sindesar Khurd Mines, an underground zinc and lead mine situated in Dariba, Rajasthan, India. The mining equipment at the location is maintained by the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) namely Sandvik and Atlas Copco, who carry out the maintenance and inspection operations for the equipment. Based on the downtime data extracted for the equipment fleet over the period of 6 months spanning from 1st January 2017 until 30th June 2017, it was revealed that significant contribution of three downtime issues related to namely Engine, Hydraulics, and Transmission to be common among all the loading equipment fleet and substantiated by Pareto Analysis. Further scrutiny through Bubble Matrix Analysis of the given factors revealed the major influence of selective factors namely Overheating, No Load Taken (NTL) issues, Gear Changing issues and Hose Puncture and leakage issues. Utilizing the equipment wise analysis of all the downtime factors obtained, spares consumed, and the alarm logs extracted from the machines, technical design changes in the equipment and pre shift critical alarms checklist were proposed for the equipment maintenance. The given analysis is beneficial to allow OEMs or mine management to focus on the critical issues hampering the reliability of mine equipment and design necessary maintenance strategies to mitigate them.

Keywords: Bubble matrix analysis, LHDs, OEMs, pareto chart analysis, spares consumption matrix, critical alarms checklist.

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67 Populism and the Democratic Crisis: Comparative Study of Four Countries

Authors: Hyein Ko

Abstract:

In 2017, many signs of populism occurred around the world. This paper suggests that populism is not a sudden phenomenon, but a manifestation of common people’s will. By analyzing previous research, this paper proposes three factors related to populism: Inequality, experience of economic crisis, and rapid cultural change. With these three elements, four cases will be investigated in this article; two countries experienced populism, and the other two countries did not experience it. Comparing four cases by using three elements will give a fruitful foundation for further analysis regarding populism. In sum, aforementioned three elements are highly related to the occurrence of populism. However, there is one hidden factor: dissatisfaction with established politics. Thus, populism is not a temporal phenomenon. It is a red alert for democratic crisis.

Keywords: Common people, democratic crisis, populism, Trump phenomenon.

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66 Effects of Polyvictimization in Suicidal Ideation among Children and Adolescents in Chile

Authors: Oscar E. Cariceo

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In Chile, there is a lack of evidence about the impact of polyvictimization on the emergence of suicidal thoughts among children and young people. Thus, this study aims to explore the association between the episodes of polyvictimization suffered by Chilean children and young people and the manifestation of signs related to suicidal tendencies. To achieve this purpose, secondary data from the First Polyvictimization Survey on Children and Adolescents of 2017 were analyzed, and a binomial logistic regression model was applied to establish the probability that young people are experiencing suicidal ideation episodes. The main findings show that women between the ages of 13 and 15 years, who are in seventh grade and second in subsidized schools, are more likely to express suicidal ideas, which increases if they have suffered different types of victimization, particularly physical violence, psychological aggression, and sexual abuse.

Keywords: Chile, polyvictimization, suicidal ideation, youth.

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65 Complementing Assessment Processes with Standardized Tests: A Work in Progress

Authors: Amparo Camacho

Abstract:

ABET accredited programs must assess the development of student learning outcomes (SOs) in engineering programs. Different institutions implement different strategies for this assessment, and they are usually designed “in house.” This paper presents a proposal for including standardized tests to complement the ABET assessment model in an engineering college made up of six distinct engineering programs. The engineering college formulated a model of quality assurance in education to be implemented throughout the six engineering programs to regularly assess and evaluate the achievement of SOs in each program offered. The model uses diverse techniques and sources of data to assess student performance and to implement actions of improvement based on the results of this assessment. The model is called “Assessment Process Model” and it includes SOs A through K, as defined by ABET. SOs can be divided into two categories: “hard skills” and “professional skills” (soft skills). The first includes abilities, such as: applying knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering and designing and conducting experiments, as well as analyzing and interpreting data. The second category, “professional skills”, includes communicating effectively, and understanding professional and ethnical responsibility. Within the Assessment Process Model, various tools were used to assess SOs, related to both “hard” as well as “soft” skills. The assessment tools designed included: rubrics, surveys, questionnaires, and portfolios. In addition to these instruments, the Engineering College decided to use tools that systematically gather consistent quantitative data. For this reason, an in-house exam was designed and implemented, based on the curriculum of each program. Even though this exam was administered during various academic periods, it is not currently considered standardized. In 2017, the Engineering College included three standardized tests: one to assess mathematical and scientific reasoning and two more to assess reading and writing abilities. With these exams, the college hopes to obtain complementary information that can help better measure the development of both hard and soft skills of students in the different engineering programs. In the first semester of 2017, the three exams were given to three sample groups of students from the six different engineering programs. Students in the sample groups were either from the first, fifth, and tenth semester cohorts. At the time of submission of this paper, the engineering college has descriptive statistical data and is working with various statisticians to have a more in-depth and detailed analysis of the sample group of students’ achievement on the three exams. The overall objective of including standardized exams in the assessment model is to identify more precisely the least developed SOs in order to define and implement educational strategies necessary for students to achieve them in each engineering program.

Keywords: Assessment, hard skills, soft skills, standardized tests.

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64 A Review of Existing Turnover Intention Theories

Authors: Pauline E. Ngo-Henha

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Existing turnover intention theories are reviewed in this paper. This review was conducted with the help of the search keyword “turnover intention theories” in Google Scholar during the month of July 2017. These theories include: The Theory of Organizational Equilibrium (TOE), Social Exchange Theory, Job Embeddedness Theory, Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory, the Resource-Based View, Equity Theory, Human Capital Theory, and the Expectancy Theory. One of the limitations of this review paper is that data were only collected from Google Scholar where many papers were sometimes not freely accessible. However, this paper attempts to contribute to the research in clarifying the distinction between theories and models in the context of turnover intention.

Keywords: Job embeddedness theory, theory of organizational equilibrium (TOE), Herzberg’s two-factor theory, turnover intention theories, theories and models.

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63 Safety Conditions Analysis of Scaffolding on Construction Sites

Authors: M. Pieńko, A. Robak, E. Błazik-Borowa, J. Szer

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This paper presents the results of analysis of 100 full-scale scaffolding structures in terms of compliance with legal acts and safety of use. In 2016 and 2017, authors examined scaffolds in Poland located at buildings which were at construction or renovation stage. The basic elements affecting the safety of scaffolding use such as anchors, supports, platforms, guardrails and toe-boards have been taken into account. All of these elements were checked in each of considered scaffolding. Based on the analyzed scaffoldings, the most common errors concerning assembly process and use of scaffolding were collected. Legal acts on the scaffoldings are not always clear, and this causes many issues. In practice, people realize how dangerous the use of incomplete scaffolds is only when the accident occurs. Despite the fact that the scaffolding should ensure the safety of its users, most accidents on construction sites are caused by fall from a height.

Keywords: Façade scaffolds, load capacity, practice, safety of people.

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62 An Overview of Evaluations Using Augmented Reality for Assembly Training Tasks

Authors: S. Werrlich, E. Eichstetter, K. Nitsche, G. Notni

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Augmented Reality (AR) is a strong growing research topic in different training domains such as medicine, sports, military, education and industrial use cases like assembly and maintenance tasks. AR claims to improve the efficiency and skill-transfer of training tasks. This paper gives a comprehensive overview of evaluations using AR for assembly and maintenance training tasks published between 1992 and 2017. We search in a structured way in four different online databases and get 862 results. We select 17 relevant articles focusing on evaluating AR-based training applications for assembly and maintenance tasks. This paper also indicates design guidelines which are necessary for creating a successful application for an AR-based training. We also present five scientific limitations in the field of AR-based training for assembly tasks. Finally, we show our approach to solve current research problems using Design Science Research (DSR).

Keywords: Assembly, augmented reality, survey, training.

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61 Strategic Human Resources Management practice, “Are We There yet“? The Incorporation of a Human Resources Strategy within a University's Strategic Plan

Authors: Eileen M. J. Knight

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This study examines the structural and systematic processes of the Human Resources Division at The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago for evidence of incorporation of the University's 2012- 2017 Strategic Plan. In conducting the study the structure of the Human Resources Management Division and its functions were carefully reviewed and measured against the strategic direction of the organisation. Findings indicate disconnect between these areas as there is apparent failure of the Human Resources Division to totally align its mandate with that of the organisation-s strategic direction. This action serves to threaten the viability of the organisation and its efficiency and effectiveness as an institution. The recommendations being put forward are for the realignment of the Human Resources Management Division and for its focus to mirror that of the organisation and the organisation-s goals and objectives. This may entail a restructuring of the Division.

Keywords: Commonwealth Caribbean, Realignment, Region, Strategic Plan.

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60 The Impact of Female Characters on a Movie’s Return on Investment

Authors: Raghav Lakhotia, Sameer Ganu, Anshul Goel, Abhishek Kumar

Abstract:

In the age and times where women’s empowerment is a significant topic of discussion, we aim to analyze the potential gender diversity influence on box office revenues. The following research is carried out by collecting data from 400 Hollywood movies between the years 2014-2017 and performing regression analysis to find a correlation between the presence of female characters in movies and their return on investment (ROI). The paper finds that there is a positive relationship between the performance of the movies (its ROI) and the gender diversity i.e. the more the number of female characters, the higher the revenue generated. Another factor such as Number of Votes also has a direct impact on the revenue of the movie. The research not only takes into consideration the mere presence of women on screen but also the exchange of at least one dialogue among themselves, which is presented by the Bechdel Score of the movie.

Keywords: Bechdel, diversity, Hollywood, return on investment.

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59 An Electronic and Performance Test for the Applicants to Faculty of Education for Early Childhood in Egypt for Measuring the Skills of Teacher Students

Authors: Ahmed Amin Mousa, Gehan Azam

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The current study presents an electronic test to measure teaching skills. This test is a part of the admission system of the Faculty of Education for Early Childhood, Cairo University. The test has been prepared to evaluate university students who apply for admission the Faculty. It measures some social and physiological skills which are important for successful teachers, such as emotional adjustment and problem solving; moreover, the extent of their love for children and their capability to interact with them. The test has been approved by 13 experts. Finally, it has been introduced to 1,100 students during the admission system of the academic year 2016/2017. The results showed that most of the applicants have an auditory learning style. In addition, 97% of them have the minimum requirement skills for teaching children.

Keywords: Electronic test, early childhood, skills, teacher student.

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58 The Impact of Seasonality on Rainfall Patterns: A Case Study

Authors: Priti Kaushik, Randhir Singh Baghel, Somil Khandelwal

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This study uses whole-year data from Rajasthan, India, at the meteorological divisional level to analyze and evaluate long-term spatiotemporal trends in rainfall and looked at the data from each of the thirteen tehsils in the Jaipur district to see how the rainfall pattern has altered over the last 10 years. Data on daily rainfall from the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) in Jaipur are available for the years 2012 through 2021. We mainly focus on comparing data of tehsil wise in the Jaipur district, Rajasthan, India. Also analyzed is the fact that July and August always see higher rainfall than any other month. Rainfall usually starts to rise around week 25th and peaks in weeks 32nd or 33rd. They showed that on several occasions, 2017 saw the least amount of rainfall during a long span of 10 years. The greatest rain fell between 2012 and 2021 in 2013, 2019, and 2020.

Keywords: Data analysis, extreme events, rainfall, descriptive case studies, precipitation temperature.

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57 Cloudburst-Triggered Natural Hazards in Uttarakhand Himalaya: Mechanism, Prevention, and Mitigation

Authors: Vishwambhar Prasad Sati

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This article examines cloudburst-triggered natural hazards mainly flashfloods and landslides in the Uttarakhand Himalaya. It further describes mechanism and implications of natural hazards and illustrates the preventive and mitigation measures. We conducted this study through collection of archival data, case study of cloudburst hit areas, and rapid field visit of the affected regions. In the second week of August 2017, about 50 people died and huge losses to property were noticed due to cloudburst-triggered flashfloods. Our study shows that although cloudburst triggered hazards in the Uttarakhand Himalaya are natural phenomena and unavoidable yet, disasters can be minimized if preventive measures are taken up appropriately. We suggested that construction of human settlements, institutions and infrastructural facilities along the seasonal streams and the perennial rivers should be avoided to prevent disasters. Further, large-scale tree plantation on the degraded land will reduce the magnitude of hazards.

Keywords: Cloudburst, flashfloods, landslides, fragile landscape, Uttarakhand Himalaya.

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56 Malaria Prone Zones of West Bengal: A Spatio-Temporal Scenario

Authors: Meghna Maiti, Utpal Roy

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In India, till today, malaria is considered to be one of the significant infectious diseases. Most of the cases regional geographical factors are the principal elements to let the places a unique identity. The incidence and intensity of infectious diseases are quite common and affect different places differently across the nation. The present study aims to identify spatial clusters of hot spots and cold spots of malaria incidence and their seasonal variation during the three periods of 2012-2014, 2015-2017 and 2018-20 in the state of West Bengal in India. As malaria is a vector-borne disease, numbers of positive test results are to be reported by the laboratories to the Department of Health, West Bengal (through the National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme). Data on block-wise monthly malaria positive cases are collected from Health Management Information System (HMIS), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. Moran’s I statistic is performed to assess the spatial autocorrelation of malaria incidence. The spatial statistical analysis mainly Local Indicators of Spatial Autocorrelation (LISA) cluster and Local Geary Cluster are applied to find the spatial clusters of hot spots and cold spots and seasonal variability of malaria incidence over the three periods. The result indicates that the spatial distribution of malaria is clustered during each of the three periods of 2012-2014, 2015-2017 and 2018-20. The analysis shows that in all the cases, high-high clusters are primarily concentrated in the western (Purulia, Paschim Medinipur districts), central (Maldah, Murshidabad districts) and the northern parts (Jalpaiguri, Kochbihar districts) and low-low clusters are found in the lower Gangetic plain (central-south) mainly and northern parts of West Bengal during the stipulated period. Apart from this seasonal variability inter-year variation is also visible. The results from different methods of this study indicate significant variation in the spatial distribution of malaria incidence in West Bengal and high incidence clusters are primarily persistently concentrated over the western part during 2012-2020 along with a strong seasonal pattern with a peak in rainy and autumn. By applying the different techniques in identifying the different degrees of incidence zones of malaria across West Bengal, some specific pockets or malaria hotspots are marked and identified where the incidence rates are quite harmonious over the different periods. From this analysis, it is clear that malaria is not a disease that is distributed uniformly across the state; some specific pockets are more prone to be affected in particular seasons of each year. Disease ecology and spatial patterns must be the factors in explaining the real factors for the higher incidence of this issue within those affected districts. The further study mainly by applying empirical approach is needed for discerning the strong relationship between communicable disease and other associated affecting factors.

Keywords: Malaria, infectious diseases, spatial statistics, spatial autocorrelation, LISA.

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55 Embodied Cognition and Its Implications in Education: An Overview of Recent Literature

Authors: Panagiotis Kosmas, Panayiotis Zaphiris

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Embodied Cognition (EC) as a learning paradigm is based on the idea of an inseparable link between body, mind, and environment. In recent years, the advent of theoretical learning approaches around EC theory has resulted in a number of empirical studies exploring the implementation of the theory in education. This systematic literature overview identifies the mainstream of EC research and emphasizes on the implementation of the theory across learning environments. Based on a corpus of 43 manuscripts, published between 2013 and 2017, it sets out to describe the range of topics covered under the umbrella of EC and provides a holistic view of the field. The aim of the present review is to investigate the main issues in EC research related to the various learning contexts. Particularly, the study addresses the research methods and technologies that are utilized, and it also explores the integration of body into the learning context. An important finding from the overview is the potential of the theory in different educational environments and disciplines. However, there is a lack of an explicit pedagogical framework from an educational perspective for a successful implementation in various learning contexts.

Keywords: Embodied cognition, embodied learning, education, technology, schools.

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54 The Supply Chain Management and Supply Chain Responsiveness in the Competitiveness of the Agrofood Sector: An Econometric Analysis

Authors: Alma Lucero Ortiz, Mario Gómez

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The purpose of this article is to conduct a theoretical and empirical study in order to analyze how the Supply Chain Management (SCM) and Supply Chain Responsiveness (SCR) affects the competitive advantage of the agrofood sector in 2017, in particular, the exporting companies of berries in Mexico. This work is presented in two parts, as a first part is developed a theoretical analysis of the main studies to measure the variables subject to the study. Subsequently an empirical study is carried out through field work and to process the data a logical econometric model is performed to be able to evaluate the effect of the SCM and SCR on the competitive advantage in the companies exporting berries. The results suggest that the SCM has a positive effect on the competitive advantage of the companies under study, so it is necessary to implement greater practices oriented towards a suitable SCM for the companies to achieve a competitive performance. In the case of SCR, it was found that this variable does not have effect on competitive advantage.

Keywords: Competitive advantage, econometric model, supply chain management, supply chain responsiveness, sustained competitive advantage.

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53 Gender Differences in E-Society: The Case of Slovenia

Authors: Mitja Dečman

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The ever-increasing presence and use of information and communication technology (ICT) influences the different social relationships of today's society. Gender differences are especially important from the viewpoint of modern society since ICT can either deepen the existing inequalities or diminish them. In a developed Western world, gender equality has been a well-focused area for decades in many parts of society including education, employment or politics and has led to a decrease in the inequality of women and men in these and other areas. The area of digital equality, or inequality for that matter, is one of the areas where gender differences still exist in many countries of the world. The research presented in this paper focuses on Slovenia, one of the smallest EU member states, being an average achiever in the area of e-society according to the many different European benchmarking indexes. On the other hand, Slovenia is working in an alignment with many European gender equality guidelines and showing good results. The results of our research are based on the analysis of survey data from 2014 to 2017 dealing with Slovenian citizens and their households and the use of ICT. Considering gender issues, the synthesis showed that cultural differences influence some measured ICT indicators but on the other hand the differences are low and only sometimes statistically significant.

Keywords: Digital divide, e-society, gender inequality, Slovenia.

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52 Statistical and Land Planning Study of Tourist Arrivals in Greece during 2005-2016

Authors: Dimitra Alexiou

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During the last 10 years, in spite of the economic crisis, the number of tourists arriving in Greece has increased, particularly during the tourist season from April to October. In this paper, the number of annual tourist arrivals is studied to explore their preferences with regard to the month of travel, the selected destinations, as well the amount of money spent. The collected data are processed with statistical methods, yielding numerical and graphical results. From the computation of statistical parameters and the forecasting with exponential smoothing, useful conclusions are arrived at that can be used by the Greek tourism authorities, as well as by tourist organizations, for planning purposes for the coming years. The results of this paper and the computed forecast can also be used for decision making by private tourist enterprises that are investing in Greece. With regard to the statistical methods, the method of Simple Exponential Smoothing of time series of data is employed. The search for a best forecast for 2017 and 2018 provides the value of the smoothing coefficient. For all statistical computations and graphics Microsoft Excel is used.

Keywords: Tourism, statistical methods, exponential smoothing, land spatial planning, economy, Microsoft Excel.

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