Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 29

Search results for: Victoria A. Okwoche

29 Analysis of Food Security Situation among Nigerian Rural Farmers

Authors: Victoria A. Okwoche, Benjamin C. Asogwa

Abstract:

This paper analysed the food security situation among Nigerian rural farmers. Data collected on 202 rural farmers from Benue State were analysed using descriptive and inferential statistics. The study revealed that majority of the respondents (60.83%) had medium dietary diversity. Furthermore, household daily calorie requirement for the food secure households was 10,723 and the household daily calorie consumption was 12,598, with a surplus index of 0.04. The food security index was 1.16. The Household daily per capita calorie consumption was 3,221.2. For the food insecure households, the household daily calorie requirement was 20,213 and the household daily calorie consumption was 17,393. The shortfall index was 0.14. The food security index was 0.88. The Household daily per capita calorie consumption was 2,432.8. The most commonly used coping strategies during food stress included intercropping (99.2%), reliance on less preferred food (98.1%), limiting portion size at meal times (85.8%) and crop diversification (70.8%).

Keywords: Analysis, food security, rural areas, farmers, Nigeria.

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28 Comparison of Different Techniques for Processing and Preserving fish Rastrineobola argentea from Lake Victoria, Kenya

Authors: Ayub V. O. Ofulla, Jackson H. O. Onyuka, Samuel Wagai, Douglas Anyona, Gabriel O. Dida, John Gichuki

Abstract:

This study was set to determine the antimicrobial activities of brine salting, chlorinated solution, and oil frying treatments on enteric bacteria and fungi in Rastrineobola argentea fish from fish landing beaches within L. Victoria basin of western Kenya. Statistical differences in effectiveness of the different treatment methods was determined by single factor ANOVA, and paired two-tail t-Test was performed to compare the differences in moisture contents before and after storage. Oil fried fish recorded the lowest microbial loads, sodium chloride at 10% concentration was the second most effective and chlorinated solution even at 150ppm was the least effective against the bacteria and fungi in fish. Moisture contents of the control and treated fish were significantly lower after storage. These results show that oil frying of fish should be adopted for processing and preserving Rastrineobola argentea which is the most abundant and affordable fish species from Lake Victoria.

Keywords: Fish landing beaches, Lake Victoria, oil frying, preservatives.

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27 Prevalence and Antimicrobial Susceptibility Patterns of Enteric Bacteria Isolated from Water and Fish in Lake Victoria Basin of Western Kenya

Authors: Jackson H. O. Onyuka, Rose Kakai, David M. Onyango, Peter F. Arama, John Gichuki, Ayub V.O. Ofulla

Abstract:

A cross sectional study design and standard microbiological procedures were used to determine the prevalence and antimicrobial susceptibility patterns of Escherichia coli, Salmonella enterica serovar typhimurium and Vibrio cholerae O1 isolated from water and two fish species Rastrineobola argentea and Oreochromis niloticus collected from fish landing beaches and markets in the Lake Victoria Basin of western Kenya. Out of 162 samples analyzed, 133 (82.1%) were contaminated, with S. typhimurium as the most prevalent (49.6%), followed by E. coli (46.6%), and lastly V. cholerae (2.8%). All the bacteria isolates were sensitive to ciprofloxacin. E. coli isolates were resistant to ampicillin, tetracycline, cotrimoxazole, chloramphenical and gentamicin while S. typhimurium isolates exhibited resistance to ampicillin, tetracycline, and cotrimoxazole. The V. cholerae O1 isolates were resistant to tetracycline and ampicillin. The high prevalence of drug resistant enteric bacteria in water and fish from the study region needs public health intervention from the local government.

Keywords: Aquatic environments, Antimicrobial resistance, Enteric bacteria, Lake Victoria Basin

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26 Systematics of Water Lilies (Genus Nymphaea L.) Using 18S rDNA Sequences

Authors: M. Nakkuntod, S. Srinarang, K.W. Hilu

Abstract:

Water lily (Nymphaea L.) is the largest genus of Nymphaeaceae. This family is composed of six genera (Nuphar, Ondinea, Euryale, Victoria, Barclaya, Nymphaea). Its members are nearly worldwide in tropical and temperate regions. The classification of some species in Nymphaea is ambiguous due to high variation in leaf and flower parts such as leaf margin, stamen appendage. Therefore, the phylogenetic relationships based on 18S rDNA were constructed to delimit this genus. DNAs of 52 specimens belonging to water lily family were extracted using modified conventional method containing cetyltrimethyl ammonium bromide (CTAB). The results showed that the amplified fragment is about 1600 base pairs in size. After analysis, the aligned sequences presented 9.36% for variable characters comprising 2.66% of parsimonious informative sites and 6.70% of singleton sites. Moreover, there are 6 regions of 1-2 base(s) for insertion/deletion. The phylogenetic trees based on maximum parsimony and maximum likelihood with high bootstrap support indicated that genus Nymphaea was a paraphyletic group because of Ondinea, Victoria and Euryale disruption. Within genus Nymphaea, subgenus Nymphaea is a basal lineage group which cooperated with Euryale and Victoria. The other four subgenera, namely Lotos, Hydrocallis, Brachyceras and Anecphya were included the same large clade which Ondinea was placed within Anecphya clade due to geographical sharing.

Keywords: nrDNA, phylogeny, taxonomy, Waterlily.

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25 Unlocking Tourism Value through a Tourist Experience Management Paradigm

Authors: Siphiwe P. Mandina, Tinashe Shamuyashe

Abstract:

Tourism has become a topical issue amongst academics and practitioners due to its potential to contribute significantly towards an economy’s GDP. The problem underpinning this research is the fact that the major attraction, Victoria Falls, is being marketed in neighboring countries like South Africa, Botswana and Zambia with tour operators providing just day trips to the Victoria Falls. This has deprived Zimbabwe of income from tourism with tourists making day trips and actually not spending nights in Zimbabwe. This therefore calls for cutting edge marketing strategies that are superior to or inimitable by competing nations such as South Africa and Zambia. This study proposes a shift towards an experience management paradigm in the tourism sector. A qualitative research was adopted for this study, and findings of this study were generalized across different tourism contexts, therefore making the survey based research design more appropriate. The target population for this study is tourists visiting Zimbabwe over the period 2016 and ZTA visitor database acquired from the Department of Immigration will form the sampling frame for the purposes of this study.

Keywords: Competitiveness, tourist arrivals, tourist experience, Zimbabwe.

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24 Sustainable Intensification of Agriculture in Victoria’s Food Bowl: Optimizing Productivity with the use of Decision-Support Tools

Authors: M. Johnson, R. Faggian, V. Sposito

Abstract:

A participatory and engaged approach is key in connecting agricultural managers to sustainable agricultural systems to support and optimize production in Victoria’s food bowl. A sustainable intensification (SI) approach is well documented globally, but participation rates amongst Victorian farmers is fragmentary, and key outcomes and implementation strategies are poorly understood. Improvement in decision-support management tools and a greater understanding of the productivity gains available upon implementation of SI is necessary. This paper reviews the current understanding and uptake of SI practices amongst farmers in one of Victoria’s premier food producing regions, the Goulburn Broken; and it spatially analyses the potential for this region to adapt to climate change and optimize food production. A Geographical Information Systems (GIS) approach is taken to develop an interactive decision-support tool that can be accessible to on-ground agricultural managers. The tool encompasses multiple criteria analysis (MCA) that identifies factors during the construction phase of the tool, using expert witnesses and regional knowledge, framed within an Analytical Hierarchy Process. Given the complexities of the interrelations between each of the key outcomes, this participatory approach, in which local realities and factors inform the key outcomes and help to strategies for a particular region, results in a robust strategy for sustainably intensifying production in key food producing regions. The creation of an interactive, locally embedded, decision-support management and education tool can help to close the gap between farmer knowledge and production, increase on-farm adoption of sustainable farming strategies and techniques, and optimize farm productivity.

Keywords: Agriculture, decision-support management tools, GIS, sustainable intensification.

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23 Charaterisation of Salmonella Isolated from Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) along Lake Victoria Beaches in Western Kenya

Authors: Wandili S. Awuor, Onyango D. Miruka, Waindi N. Eliud

Abstract:

Foodborne Salmonella infections have become a major problem world wide. Salmonellosis transmitted from fish are quite common. Established quality control measures exist for export oriented fish, none exists for fish consumed locally. This study aimed at characterization of Salmonella isolated from Nile tilapia . The study was carried out in selected beaches along L. Victoria in Western Kenya between March and June 2007. One hundred and twenty fish specimens were collected. Salmonella isolates were confirmed using serotyping, biochemical testing in addition to malic acid dehydrogenase (mdh) and fliC gene sequencing. Twenty Salmonella isolates were confirmed by mdh gene sequencing. Nine (9) were S. enterica serotype typhimurium, four (4) were S. enterica Serotype, enteritidis and seven (7) were S. enterica serotype typhi. Nile tilapia have a role in transmission of Salmonellosis in the study area, poor sanitation was a major cause of pollution at the beach inshore waters.

Keywords: fliC, mdh, Salmonellosis, Serotype

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22 Evaluation of the Performance of ACTIFLO® Clarifier in the Treatment of Mining Wastewaters: Case Study of Costerfield Mining Operations, Victoria, Australia

Authors: Seyed Mohsen Samaei, Shirley Gato-Trinidad

Abstract:

A pre-treatment stage prior to reverse osmosis (RO) is very important to ensure the long-term performance of the RO membranes in any wastewater treatment using RO. This study aims to evaluate the application of the Actiflo® clarifier as part of a pre-treatment unit in mining operations. It involves performing analytical testing on RO feed water before and after installation of Actiflo® unit. Water samples prior to RO plant stage were obtained on different dates from Costerfield mining operations in Victoria, Australia. Tests were conducted in an independent laboratory to determine the concentration of various compounds in RO feed water before and after installation of Actiflo® unit during the entire evaluated period from December 2015 to June 2018. Water quality analysis shows that the quality of RO feed water has remarkably improved since installation of Actiflo® clarifier. Suspended solids (SS) and turbidity removal efficiencies has been improved by 91 and 85 percent respectively in pre-treatment system since the installation of Actiflo®. The Actiflo® clarifier proved to be a valuable part of pre-treatment system prior to RO. It has the potential to conveniently condition the mining wastewater prior to RO unit, and reduce the risk of RO physical failure and irreversible fouling. Consequently, reliable and durable operation of RO unit with minimum requirement for RO membrane replacement is expected with Actiflo® in use.

Keywords: Actiflo® clarifier, membrane, mining wastewater, reverse osmosis, wastewater treatment.

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21 Spatial Variation of WRF Model Rainfall Prediction over Uganda

Authors: Isaac Mugume, Charles Basalirwa, Daniel Waiswa, Triphonia Ngailo

Abstract:

Rainfall is a major climatic parameter affecting many sectors such as health, agriculture and water resources. Its quantitative prediction remains a challenge to weather forecasters although numerical weather prediction models are increasingly being used for rainfall prediction. The performance of six convective parameterization schemes, namely the Kain-Fritsch scheme, the Betts-Miller-Janjic scheme, the Grell-Deveny scheme, the Grell-3D scheme, the Grell-Fretas scheme, the New Tiedke scheme of the weather research and forecast (WRF) model regarding quantitative rainfall prediction over Uganda is investigated using the root mean square error for the March-May (MAM) 2013 season. The MAM 2013 seasonal rainfall amount ranged from 200 mm to 900 mm over Uganda with northern region receiving comparatively lower rainfall amount (200–500 mm); western Uganda (270–550 mm); eastern Uganda (400–900 mm) and the lake Victoria basin (400–650 mm). A spatial variation in simulated rainfall amount by different convective parameterization schemes was noted with the Kain-Fritsch scheme over estimating the rainfall amount over northern Uganda (300–750 mm) but also presented comparable rainfall amounts over the eastern Uganda (400–900 mm). The Betts-Miller-Janjic, the Grell-Deveny, and the Grell-3D underestimated the rainfall amount over most parts of the country especially the eastern region (300–600 mm). The Grell-Fretas captured rainfall amount over the northern region (250–450 mm) but also underestimated rainfall over the lake Victoria Basin (150–300 mm) while the New Tiedke generally underestimated rainfall amount over many areas of Uganda. For deterministic rainfall prediction, the Grell-Fretas is recommended for rainfall prediction over northern Uganda while the Kain-Fritsch scheme is recommended over eastern region.

Keywords: Convective parameterization schemes, March-May 2013 rainfall season, spatial variation of parameterization schemes over Uganda, WRF model.

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20 The Way Classroom Functions: Another Hidden Curriculum to be Explored

Authors: Victoria Konidari, Yvan Abernot

Abstract:

This paper seeks to explore the actual classroom setting, to examine its role for students- learning, and attitude in the class. It presents a theoretical approach of the classroom as system to be explored and examines the concrete reality of Greek secondary education students, under the light of the above approach. Based on the findings of a quantitative and qualitative research, authors propose a rather ontological approach of the classroom and underline what the key-elements for such approach should be. The paper explores extensively the theoretical dimensions for the change of paradigm required and addresses the new issues to be considered.

Keywords: Group, class, collective subject, field, temporality, ontology.

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19 An Approach to Improvement of Information Integrity in Key Areas of Portfolio Management

Authors: Victoria A. Bakhtina

Abstract:

At a time of growing market turbulence and a strong shifts towards increasingly complex risk models and more stringent audit requirements, it is more critical than ever to maintain the highest quality of financial and credit information. IFC implemented an approach that helps increase data integrity and quality significantly. This approach is called “Screening". Screening is based on linking information from different sources to identify potential inconsistencies in key financial and credit data. That, in turn, can help to ease the trials of portfolio supervision, and improve overall company global reporting and assessment systems. IFC experience showed that when used regularly, Screening led to improved information.

Keywords: Information Integrity, Information Quality, Business Rules, Portfolio Management

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18 The Use of Electronic Shelf Labels in the Retail Food Sector

Authors: Brent McKenzie, Victoria Taylor

Abstract:

The use of QR (Quick Response Codes) codes for customer scanning with mobile phones is a rapidly growing trend. The QR code can provide the consumer with product information, user guides, product use, competitive pricing, etc. One sector for QR use has been in retail, through the use of Electronic Shelf Labeling (henceforth, ESL). In Europe, the use of ESL for pricing has been in practice for a number of years but continues to lag in acceptance in North America. Stated concerns include costs as a key constraint, but there is also evidence that consumer acceptance represents a limitation as well. The purpose of this study is to present the findings of a consumer based study to gage the impact on their use in the retail food sector.

Keywords: Electronic shelf labels (ESL), consumer insights, retail food sector.

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17 Effects of Modified Bottom Boards on the Performance of Honeybee Colonies

Authors: M. Keshlaf, R. Spooner-Hart

Abstract:

Australia does not have varroa mite. However, we investigated whether modified hive bottom boards used for varroa mite management in honey bee colonies had other benefits, for honey production. We compared a number of colony parameters between hives fitted with tube, mesh and conventional (solid) bottom boards in two locations in eastern Australian, Richmond NSW and Castlemaine Victoria. Colonies housed in hives with mesh and tube bottom boards were not significantly superior to those in hives with conventional bottom boards with regard to bee flight activity, nor did they produce more honey, brood or stored pollen, in either experimental site. Although the trial was conducted over only one season, it is suggested that there may be no benefit in Australian bee keepers changing from using conventional bottom boards in the absence of varroamite.

Keywords: Apis mellifera, honey production, mesh bottom boards, tube bottom boards.

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16 Prediction of California Bearing Ratio from Physical Properties of Fine-Grained Soils

Authors: Bao Thach Nguyen, Abbas Mohajerani

Abstract:

The California Bearing Ratio (CBR) has been acknowledged as an important parameter to characterize the bearing capacity of earth structures, such as earth dams, road embankments, airport runways, bridge abutments and pavements. Technically, the CBR test can be carried out in the laboratory or in the field. The CBR test is time-consuming and is infrequently performed due to the equipment needed and the fact that the field moisture content keeps changing over time. Over the years, many correlations have been developed for the prediction of CBR by various researchers, including the dynamic cone penetrometer, undrained shear strength and Clegg impact hammer. This paper reports and discusses some of the results from a study on the prediction of CBR. In the current study, the CBR test was performed in the laboratory on some finegrained subgrade soils collected from various locations in Victoria. Based on the test results, a satisfactory empirical correlation was found between the CBR and the physical properties of the experimental soils.

Keywords: California bearing ratio, fine-grained soils, pavement, soil physical properties.

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15 Development of a Wind Resource Assessment Framework Using Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) Model, Python Scripting and Geographic Information Systems

Authors: Jerome T. Tolentino, Ma. Victoria Rejuso, Jara Kaye Villanueva, Loureal Camille Inocencio, Ma. Rosario Concepcion O. Ang

Abstract:

Wind energy is rapidly emerging as the primary source of electricity in the Philippines, although developing an accurate wind resource model is difficult. In this study, Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) Model, an open source mesoscale Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) model, was used to produce a 1-year atmospheric simulation with 4 km resolution on the Ilocos Region of the Philippines. The WRF output (netCDF) extracts the annual mean wind speed data using a Python-based Graphical User Interface. Lastly, wind resource assessment was produced using a GIS software. Results of the study showed that it is more flexible to use Python scripts than using other post-processing tools in dealing with netCDF files. Using WRF Model, Python, and Geographic Information Systems, a reliable wind resource map is produced.

Keywords: Wind resource assessment, Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) Model, python, GIS software.

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14 The SOCI Strategy as a Method to Meet the Innovation Challenges of COVID-19

Authors: Victoria Wolf, Renata Dobrucka, Robert Prezkop, Stephan Haubold

Abstract:

The COVID-19 causes a worldwide crisis and has an impact in every dimension of the economy. Organizations with the ability to adapt to new developments and which innovate solutions for the disrupted world during and after the Corona crises have the opportunity to not only survive the crisis but rather to use new trends to implement new business models and gain advantage. In this context, startups seem to have better opportunities to manage the Corona crisis through their innovation-based nature. The main result of this paper is the understanding that by applying a startup orientated innovation (SOCI) strategy, established companies can be motivated to meet the challenge of COVID-19 in a similar way like startups. This result can be achieved by describing the role of innovation and a SOCI strategy as helpful methods for organizations to meet the coming challenges during and after the COVID-19 epidemics. In addition to this, this paper presents a practical application of SOCI through the PANDA approach of the Fresenius University of Applied Sciences in Germany and discuss it in the context of COVID-19 as an exemplary successful real-world implementation of SOCI strategy.

Keywords: COVID-19, innovation, open innovation, startup, SOCI framework.

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13 Multi-Objective Planning and Operation of Water Supply Systems Subject to Climate Change

Authors: B. J. C. Perera, D. A. Sachindra, W. Godoy., A.F. Barton, F. Huang

Abstract:

Many water supply systems in Australia are currently undergoing significant reconfiguration due to reductions in long term average rainfall and resulting low inflows to water supply reservoirs since the second half of the 20th century. When water supply systems undergo change, it is necessary to develop new operating rules, which should consider climate, because the climate change is likely to further reduce inflows. In addition, water resource systems are increasingly intended to be operated to meet complex and multiple objectives representing social, economic, environmental and sustainability criteria. This is further complicated by conflicting preferences on these objectives from diverse stakeholders. This paper describes a methodology to develop optimum operating rules for complex multi-reservoir systems undergoing significant change, considering all of the above issues. The methodology is demonstrated using the Grampians water supply system in northwest Victoria, Australia. Initial work conducted on the project is also presented in this paper.

Keywords: Climate change, Multi-objective planning, Pareto optimal; Stakeholder preference, Statistical downscaling, Water supply systems.

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

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

Abstract:

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

Keywords: Tertiary student satisfaction, tertiary educational experience, pre-service teacher education, path analysis.

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11 Investigation of the Emulsifying Properties of Bambara Groundnut Flour and Starch

Authors: Ebunoluwa G. Gabriel, Victoria A. Jideani, Daniel I. O. Ikhu-Omoregbe

Abstract:

The current desire in food and industrial emulsification is the use of natural emulsifiers. Bambara groundnut flour (BGNF) and its starch (BGNS) will serve both emulsifying and nutritional purposes if found suitable. This current study was aimed at investigating the emulsifying properties of BGNF/BGNS. BGNS was extracted from the BGNF. Emulsions were prepared using a wide range of flour-oil-water and starch-oil-water composition as generated through the application of Response Surface (D-optimal) design. Prepared emulsions were investigated for stability to creaming/sedimentation (using the kinetic information from turbiscan) and flocculation/coalescence (by monitoring the droplet diameter growth using optical microscope) over 5 days. The most stable emulsions (one BGNF-stabilized and the other BGNS-stabilized) were determined. The optimal emulsifier/oil composition was 9g/39g for BGNF and 5g/30g for BGNS. The two emulsions had only 30% and 50% growth in oil droplet diameter respectively by day 5, compared to over 3000% in the unstable ones. The BGNF-stabilized emulsions were more stable than the BGNS-stabilized ones. Emulsions were successfully stabilized with BGNF and BGNS.

Keywords: Bambara groundnut, coalescence, creaming, emulsification, emulsion, emulsion stability.

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10 Linking Urban Planning and Water Planning to Achieve Sustainable Development and Liveability Outcomes in the New Growth Areas of Melbourne, Australia

Authors: Dennis Corbett

Abstract:

The city of Melbourne in Victoria, Australia, provides a number of examples of how a growing city can integrate urban planning and water planning to achieve sustainable urban development, environmental protection, liveability and integrated water management outcomes, and move towards becoming a “Water Sensitive City". Three examples are provided - the development at Botanic Ridge, where a 318 hectare residential development is being planned and where integrated water management options are being implemented using a “triple bottom line" sustainability investment approach; the Toolern development, which will capture and reuse stormwater and recycled water to greatly reduce the suburb-s demand for potable water, and the development at Kalkallo where a 1,200 hectare industrial precinct development is planned which will merge design of the development's water supply, sewerage services and stormwater system. The Paper argues that an integrated urban planning and water planning approach is fundamental to creating liveable, vibrant communities which meet social and financial needs while being in harmony with the local environment. Further work is required on developing investment frameworks and risk analysis frameworks to ensure that all possible solutions can be assessed equally.

Keywords: Integrated water management, stormwater management, sustainable urban development.

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9 Implementation of Congestion Management Strategies on Arterial Roads: Case Study of Geelong

Authors: A. Das, L. Hitihamillage, S. Moridpour

Abstract:

Natural disasters are inevitable to the biodiversity. Disasters such as flood, tsunami and tornadoes could be brutal, harsh and devastating. In Australia, flooding is a major issue experienced by different parts of the country. In such crisis, delays in evacuation could decide the life and death of the people living in those regions. Congestion management could become a mammoth task if there are no steps taken before such situations. In the past to manage congestion in such circumstances, many strategies were utilised such as converting the road shoulders to extra lanes or changing the road geometry by adding more lanes. However, expansion of road to resolving congestion problems is not considered a viable option nowadays. The authorities avoid this option due to many reasons, such as lack of financial support and land space. They tend to focus their attention on optimising the current resources they possess and use traffic signals to overcome congestion problems. Traffic Signal Management strategy was considered a viable option, to alleviate congestion problems in the City of Geelong, Victoria. Arterial road with signalised intersections considered in this paper and the traffic data required for modelling collected from VicRoads. Traffic signalling software SIDRA used to model the roads, and the information gathered from VicRoads. In this paper, various signal parameters utilised to assess and improve the corridor performance to achieve the best possible Level of Services (LOS) for the arterial road.

Keywords: Congestion, constraints, management, LOS.

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8 Three Dimensional Large Eddy Simulation of Blood Flow and Deformation in an Elastic Constricted Artery

Authors: Xi Gu, Guan Heng Yeoh, Victoria Timchenko

Abstract:

In the current work, a three-dimensional geometry of a 75% stenosed blood vessel is analyzed. Large eddy simulation (LES) with the help of a dynamic subgrid scale Smagorinsky model is applied to model the turbulent pulsatile flow. The geometry, the transmural pressure and the properties of the blood and the elastic boundary were based on clinical measurement data. For the flexible wall model, a thin solid region is constructed around the 75% stenosed blood vessel. The deformation of this solid region was modelled as a deforming boundary to reduce the computational cost of the solid model. Fluid-structure interaction is realized via a twoway coupling between the blood flow modelled via LES and the deforming vessel. The information of the flow pressure and the wall motion was exchanged continually during the cycle by an arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian method. The boundary condition of current time step depended on previous solutions. The fluctuation of the velocity in the post-stenotic region was analyzed in the study. The axial velocity at normalized position Z=0.5 shows a negative value near the vessel wall. The displacement of the elastic boundary was concerned in this study. In particular, the wall displacement at the systole and the diastole were compared. The negative displacement at the stenosis indicates a collapse at the maximum velocity and the deceleration phase.

Keywords: Large Eddy Simulation, Fluid Structural Interaction, Constricted Artery, Computational Fluid Dynamics.

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7 A Prevalence of Phonological Disorder in Children with Specific Language Impairment

Authors: Etim, Victoria Enefiok, Dada, Oluseyi Akintunde, Bassey Okon

Abstract:

Phonological disorder is a serious and disturbing issue to many parents and teachers. Efforts towards resolving the problem have been undermined by other specific disabilities which were hidden to many regular and special education teachers. It is against this background that this study was motivated to provide data on the prevalence of phonological disorders in children with specific language impairment (CWSLI) as the first step towards critical intervention. The study was a survey of 15 CWSLI from St. Louise Inclusive schools, Ikot Ekpene in Akwa Ibom State of Nigeria. Phonological Processes Diagnostic Scale (PPDS) with 17 short sentences, which cut across the five phonological processes that were examined, were validated by experts in test measurement, phonology and special education. The respondents were made to read the sentences with emphasis on the targeted sounds. Their utterances were recorded and analyzed in the language laboratory using Praat Software. Data were also collected through friendly interactions at different times from the clients. The theory of generative phonology was adopted for the descriptive analysis of the phonological processes. Data collected were analyzed using simple percentage and composite bar chart for better understanding of the result. The study found out that CWSLI exhibited the five phonological processes under investigation. It was revealed that 66.7%, 80%, 73.3%, 80%, and 86.7% of the respondents have severe deficit in fricative stopping, velar fronting, liquid gliding, final consonant deletion and cluster reduction, respectively. It was therefore recommended that a nationwide survey should be carried out to have national statistics of CWSLI with phonological deficits and develop intervention strategies for effective therapy to remediate the disorder.

Keywords: Language disorders, phonology, phonological processes, specific language impairment.

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6 Improving Subjective Bias Detection Using Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers and Bidirectional Long Short-Term Memory

Authors: Ebipatei Victoria Tunyan, T. A. Cao, Cheol Young Ock

Abstract:

Detecting subjectively biased statements is a vital task. This is because this kind of bias, when present in the text or other forms of information dissemination media such as news, social media, scientific texts, and encyclopedias, can weaken trust in the information and stir conflicts amongst consumers. Subjective bias detection is also critical for many Natural Language Processing (NLP) tasks like sentiment analysis, opinion identification, and bias neutralization. Having a system that can adequately detect subjectivity in text will boost research in the above-mentioned areas significantly. It can also come in handy for platforms like Wikipedia, where the use of neutral language is of importance. The goal of this work is to identify the subjectively biased language in text on a sentence level. With machine learning, we can solve complex AI problems, making it a good fit for the problem of subjective bias detection. A key step in this approach is to train a classifier based on BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers) as upstream model. BERT by itself can be used as a classifier; however, in this study, we use BERT as data preprocessor as well as an embedding generator for a Bi-LSTM (Bidirectional Long Short-Term Memory) network incorporated with attention mechanism. This approach produces a deeper and better classifier. We evaluate the effectiveness of our model using the Wiki Neutrality Corpus (WNC), which was compiled from Wikipedia edits that removed various biased instances from sentences as a benchmark dataset, with which we also compare our model to existing approaches. Experimental analysis indicates an improved performance, as our model achieved state-of-the-art accuracy in detecting subjective bias. This study focuses on the English language, but the model can be fine-tuned to accommodate other languages.

Keywords: Subjective bias detection, machine learning, BERT–BiLSTM–Attention, text classification, natural language processing.

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5 Wind Energy Development in the African Great Lakes Region to Supplement the Hydroelectricity in the Locality: A Case Study from Tanzania

Authors: R.M. Kainkwa

Abstract:

The African Great Lakes Region refers to the zone around lakes Victoria, Tanganyika, Albert, Edward, Kivu, and Malawi. The main source of electricity in this region is hydropower whose systems are generally characterized by relatively weak, isolated power schemes, poor maintenance and technical deficiencies with limited electricity infrastructures. Most of the hydro sources are rain fed, and as such there is normally a deficiency of water during the dry seasons and extended droughts. In such calamities fossil fuels sources, in particular petroleum products and natural gas, are normally used to rescue the situation but apart from them being nonrenewable, they also release huge amount of green house gases to our environment which in turn accelerates the global warming that has at present reached an amazing stage. Wind power is ample, renewable, widely distributed, clean, and free energy source that does not consume or pollute water. Wind generated electricity is one of the most practical and commercially viable option for grid quality and utility scale electricity production. However, the main shortcoming associated with electric wind power generation is fluctuation in its output both in space and time. Before making a decision to establish a wind park at a site, the wind speed features there should therefore be known thoroughly as well as local demand or transmission capacity. The main objective of this paper is to utilise monthly average wind speed data collected from one prospective site within the African Great Lakes Region to demonstrate that the available wind power there is high enough to generate electricity. The mean monthly values were calculated from records gathered on hourly basis for a period of 5 years (2001 to 2005) from a site in Tanzania. The documentations that were collected at a height of 2 m were projected to a height of 50 m which is the standard hub height of wind turbines. The overall monthly average wind speed was found to be 12.11 m/s whereas June to November was established to be the windy season as the wind speed during the session is above the overall monthly wind speed. The available wind power density corresponding to the overall mean monthly wind speed was evaluated to be 1072 W/m2, a potential that is worthwhile harvesting for the purpose of electric generation.

Keywords: Hydro power, windy season, available wind powerdensity.

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4 Inner and Outer School Contextual Factors Associated with Poor Performance of Grade 12 Students: A Case Study of an Underperforming High School in Mpumalanga, South Africa

Authors: Victoria L. Nkosi, Parvaneh Farhangpour

Abstract:

Often a Grade 12 certificate is perceived as a passport to tertiary education and the minimum requirement to enter the world of work. In spite of its importance, many students do not make this milestone in South Africa. It is important to find out why so many students still fail in spite of transformation in the education system in the post-apartheid era. Given the complexity of education and its context, this study adopted a case study design to examine one historically underperforming high school in Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga Province, South Africa in 2013. The aim was to gain a understanding of the inner and outer school contextual factors associated with the high failure rate among Grade 12 students.  Government documents and reports were consulted to identify factors in the district and the village surrounding the school and a student survey was conducted to identify school, home and student factors. The randomly-sampled half of the population of Grade 12 students (53) participated in the survey and quantitative data are analyzed using descriptive statistical methods. The findings showed that a host of factors is at play. The school is located in a village within a municipality which has been one of the poorest three municipalities in South Africa and the lowest Grade 12 pass rate in the Mpumalanga province.   Moreover, over half of the families of the students are single parents, 43% are unemployed and the majority has a low level of education. In addition, most families (83%) do not have basic study materials such as a dictionary, books, tables, and chairs. A significant number of students (70%) are over-aged (+19 years old); close to half of them (49%) are grade repeaters. The school itself lacks essential resources, namely computers, science laboratories, library, and enough furniture and textbooks. Moreover, teaching and learning are negatively affected by the teachers’ occasional absenteeism, inadequate lesson preparation, and poor communication skills. Overall, the continuous low performance of students in this school mirrors the vicious circle of multiple negative conditions present within and outside of the school. The complexity of factors associated with the underperformance of Grade 12 students in this school calls for a multi-dimensional intervention from government and stakeholders. One important intervention should be the placement of over-aged students and grade-repeaters in suitable educational institutions for the benefit of other students.

Keywords: Inner context, outer context, over-aged students, vicious circle.

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3 The Global Children’s Challenge Program: Pedometer Step Count in an Australian School

Authors: D. Hilton

Abstract:

The importance and significance of this research is based upon the fundamental knowledge reported in the scientific literature that physical activity is inversely associated with obesity. In addition, it is recognized there is a global epidemic of sedentariness while at the same time it is known that morbidity and mortality are associated with physical inactivity and as a result of overweight or obesity. Hence this small study in school students is an important area of research in our community. An application submitted in 2005 for the inaugural Public Health Education Research Trust [PHERT] Post Graduate Research Scholarship scheme organized by the Public Health Association of Australia [PHAA] was awarded 3rd place within Australia. The author and title was: D. Hilton, Methods to increase physical activity in school aged children [literature review, a trial using pedometers and a policy paper]. Third place is a good result, however this did not secure funding for the project, as only first place received $5000 funding. Some years later within Australia, a program commenced called the Global Children's Challenge [GCC]. Given details of the 2005 award above were included an application submission prepared for Parkhill Primary School [PPS] which is located in Victoria, Australia was successful. As a result, an excited combined grade 3/ 4 class at the school [27 students] in 2012 became recipients of these free pedometers. Ambassadors for the program were Mrs Catherine Freeman [OAM], Olympic Gold Medalist – Sydney 2000 [400 meters], while another ambassador was Mr Colin Jackson [CBE] who is a Welsh former sprint and hurdling athlete. In terms of PPS and other schools involved in 2012, website details show that the event started on 19th Sep 2012 and students were to wear the pedometer every day for 50 days [at home and at school] aiming for the recommended 15,000 steps/day recording steps taken in a booklet provided. After the finish, an analysis of the average step count for this school showed that the average steps taken / day was 14, 003 [however only a small percentage of students returned the booklets and units] as unfortunately the dates for the program coincided with school holidays so some students either forgot or misplaced the units / booklets. Unfortunately funding for this program ceased in 2013, however the lasting impact of the trial on student’s knowledge and awareness remains and in fact becomes a good grounding for students in how to monitor basic daily physical activity using a method that is easy, fun, low cost and readily accessible.

Keywords: Walking, exercise, physical activity [motor activity].

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2 Closing the Loop between Building Sustainability and Stakeholder Engagement: Case Study of an Australian University

Authors: Karishma Kashyap, Subha D. Parida

Abstract:

Rapid population growth and urbanization is creating pressure throughout the world. This has a dramatic effect on a lot of elements which include water, food, transportation, energy, infrastructure etc. as few of the key services. Built environment sector is growing concurrently to meet the needs of urbanization. Due to such large scale development of buildings, there is a need for them to be monitored and managed efficiently. Along with appropriate management, climate adaptation is highly crucial as well because buildings are one of the major sources of greenhouse gas emission in their operation phase. Buildings to be adaptive need to provide a triple bottom approach to sustainability i.e., being socially, environmentally and economically sustainable. Hence, in order to deliver these sustainability outcomes, there is a growing understanding and thrive towards switching to green buildings or renovating new ones as per green standards wherever possible. Academic institutions in particular have been following this trend globally. This is highly significant as universities usually have high occupancy rates because they manage a large building portfolio. Also, as universities accommodate the future generation of architects, policy makers etc., they have the potential of setting themselves as a best industry practice model for research and innovation for the rest to follow. Hence their climate adaptation, sustainable growth and performance management becomes highly crucial in order to provide the best services to users. With the objective of evaluating appropriate management mechanisms within academic institutions, a feasibility study was carried out in a recent 5-Star Green Star rated university building (housing the School of Construction) in Victoria (south-eastern state of Australia). The key aim was to understand the behavioral and social aspect of the building users, management and the impact of their relationship on overall building sustainability. A survey was used to understand the building occupant’s response and reactions in terms of their work environment and management. A report was generated based on the survey results complemented with utility and performance data which were then used to evaluate the management structure of the university. Followed by the report, interviews were scheduled with the facility and asset managers in order to understand the approach they use to manage the different buildings in their university campuses (old, new, refurbished), respective building and parameters incorporated in maintaining the Green Star performance. The results aimed at closing the communication and feedback loop within the respective institutions and assist the facility managers to deliver appropriate stakeholder engagement. For the wider design community, analysis of the data highlights the applicability and significance of prioritizing key stakeholders, integrating desired engagement policies within an institution’s management structures and frameworks and their effect on building performance

Keywords: Building Optimization, Green Building, Post Occupancy Evaluation, Stakeholder Engagement.

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1 University Curriculum Policy Processes in Chile: A Case Study

Authors: Victoria C. Valdebenito

Abstract:

Located within the context of accelerating globalization in the 21st-century knowledge society, this paper focuses on one selected university in Chile at which radical curriculum policy changes have been taking place, diverging from the traditional curriculum in Chile at the undergraduate level as a section of a larger investigation. Using a ‘policy trajectory’ framework, and guided by the interpretivist approach to research, interview transcripts and institutional documents were analyzed in relation to the meso (university administration) and the micro (academics) level. Inside the case study, participants from the university administration and academic levels were selected both via snow-ball technique and purposive selection, thus they had different levels of seniority, with some participating actively in the curriculum reform processes. Guided by an interpretivist approach to research, documents and interview transcripts were analyzed to reveal major themes emerging from the data. A further ‘bigger picture’ analysis guided by critical theory was then undertaken, involving interrogation of underlying ideologies and how political and economic interests influence the cultural production of policy. The case-study university was selected because it represents a traditional and old case of university setting in the country, undergoing curriculum changes based on international trends such as the competency model and the liberal arts. Also, it is representative of a particular socioeconomic sector of the country. Access to the university was gained through email contact. Qualitative research methods were used, namely interviews and analysis of institutional documents. In all, 18 people were interviewed. The number was defined by when the saturation criterion was met. Semi-structured interview schedules were based on the four research questions about influences, policy texts, policy enactment and longer-term outcomes. Triangulation of information was used for the analysis. While there was no intention to generalize the specific findings of the case study, the results of the research were used as a focus for engagement with broader themes, often evident in global higher education policy developments. The research results were organized around major themes in three of the four contexts of the ‘policy trajectory’. Regarding the context of influences and the context of policy text production, themes relate to hegemony exercised by first world countries’ universities in the higher education field, its associated neoliberal ideology, with accountability and the discourse of continuous improvement, the local responses to those pressures, and the value of interdisciplinarity. Finally, regarding the context of policy practices and effects (enactment), themes emerged around the impacts of the curriculum changes on university staff, students, and resistance amongst academics. The research concluded with a few recommendations that potentially provide ‘food for thought’ beyond the localized settings of this study, as well as possibilities for further research.

Keywords: Curriculum, policy, higher education, global-local dynamics.

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