Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3151

Search results for: quality indicators

3151 Quality Management in Public e-Administration

Authors: J. Ruso, M. Krsmanovic, A. Trajkovic, Z. Rakicevic

Abstract:

Since the late 1970s, quality management has become an important tool for achieving a high quality of public e-administration services in many countries. Very important part of quality management in e-administration is measurement of quality indicators related to this sector. Therefore, this paper gives a description of e-administration, including statistics about it and other examples from many countries worldwide, as well as the explanation of quality management in public e-administration. The paper also gives a list and description of quality indicators relevant to e-administration, as part of quality management within the e-administration. Through a literature review and best practices, the paper aims to analyze quality indicators measurement and other parts of good quality management when it comes to the public e-administration and consequently to show the usefulness of quality management in public e-administration in order to provide services of high quality.

Keywords: e-Administration, quality indicators, quality management.

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3150 Developing and Implementing Successful Key Performance Indicators

Authors: Marie Mikušová, Viktorie Janečková

Abstract:

Measurement and the following evaluation of performance represent important part of management. The paper focuses on indicators as the basic elements of performance measurement system. It emphasizes a necessity of searching requirements for quality indicators so that they can become part of the useful system. It introduces standpoints for a systematic dividing of indicators so that they have as high as possible informative value of background sources for searching, analysis, designing and using of indicators. It draws attention to requirements for indicators' quality and at the same it deals with some dangers decreasing indicator's informative value. It submits a draft of questions that should be answered at the construction of indicator. It is obvious that particular indicators need to be defined exactly to stimulate the desired behavior in order to attain expected results. In the enclosure a concrete example of the defined indicator in the concrete conditions of a small firm is given. The authors of the paper pay attention to the fact that a quality indicator makes it possible to get to the basic causes of the problem and include the established facts into the company information system. At the same time they emphasize that developing of a quality indicator is a prerequisite for the utilization of the system of measurement in management.

Keywords: performance, measurement, firm, indicator

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3149 Towards an Integrated Proposal for Performance Measurement Indicators (Financial and Operational) in Advanced Production Practices

Authors: José A. D. Machuca, Bernabé Escobar-Pérez, Pedro Garrido Vega, Darkys E. Lujan García

Abstract:

Starting with an analysis of the financial and operational indicators that can be found in the specialised literature, this study aims to contribute to improvements in the performance measurement systems used when the unit of analysis is the manufacturing plant. For this a search was done in the highest impact Journals of Production and Operations Management and Management Accounting , with the aim of determining the financial and operational indicators used to evaluate performance when Advanced Production Practices have been implemented, more specifically when the practices implemented are Total Quality Management, JIT/Lean Manufacturing and Total Productive Maintenance. This has enabled us to obtain a classification of the two types of indicators based on how much each is used. For the financial indicators we have also prepared a proposal that can be adapted to manufacturing plants- accounting features. In the near future we will propose a model that links practices implementation with financial and operational indicators and these two last with each other. We aim to will test this model empirically with the data obtained in the High Performance Manufacturing Project.

Keywords: Advanced Production Practices, Financial Indicators, Non-Financial Indicators

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3148 Characteristics of Corporate Social Responsibility Indicators

Authors: Grigoris Giannarakis, Nikolaos Litinas, Ioannis Theotokas

Abstract:

The aim of the study is to investigate a number of characteristics of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) indicators that should be adopted by CSR assessment methodologies. For the purpose of this paper, a survey among the Greek companies that belong to FTSE 20 in Athens Exchange (FTSE/Athex-20) has been conducted, as these companies are expected to pioneer in the field of CSR. The results show consensus as regards the characteristics of indicators such as the need for the adoption of general and specific sector indicators, financial and non-financial indicators, the origin and the weight rate. However, the results are contradictory concerning the appropriate number of indicators for the assessment of CSR and the unit of measurement. Finally, the company-s sector is a more important dimension of CSR than the size and the country where the company operates. The purpose of this paper is to standardize the main characteristics of CSR indicators.

Keywords: Corporate social responsibility, Greece, Indicators

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3147 E-Learning Management Systems General Framework

Authors: Hamed Fawareh

Abstract:

The recent development in learning technologies leads to emerge many learning management systems (LMS). In this study, we concentrate on the specifications and characteristics of LMSs. Furthermore, this paper emphasizes on the feature of e-learning management systems. The features take on the account main indicators to assist and evaluate the quality of e-learning systems. The proposed indicators based of ten dimensions.

Keywords: E-Learning, System Requirement, Social Requirement, Learning Management System.

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3146 Bone Mineral Density and Quality, Body Composition of Women in the Postmenopausal Period

Authors: Vladyslav Povoroznyuk, Oksana Ivanyk, Nataliia Dzerovych

Abstract:

In the diagnostics of osteoporosis, the gold standard is considered to be bone mineral density; however, X-ray densitometry is not an accurate indicator of osteoporotic fracture risk under all circumstances. In this regard, the search for new methods that could determine the indicators not only of the mineral density, but of the bone tissue quality, is a logical step for diagnostic optimization. One of these methods is the evaluation of trabecular bone quality. The aim of this study was to examine the quality and mineral density of spine bone tissue, femoral neck, and body composition of women depending on the duration of the postmenopausal period, to determine the correlation of body fat with indicators of bone mineral density and quality. The study examined 179 women in premenopausal and postmenopausal periods. The patients were divided into the following groups: Women in the premenopausal period and women in the postmenopausal period at various stages (early, middle, late postmenopause). A general examination and study of the above parameters were conducted with General Electric X-ray densitometer. The results show that bone quality and mineral density probably deteriorate with advancing of postmenopausal period. Total fat and lean mass ratio is not likely to change with age. In the middle and late postmenopausal periods, the bone tissue mineral density of the spine and femoral neck increases along with total fat mass.

Keywords: Osteoporosis, bone tissue mineral density, bone quality, fat mass, lean mass, postmenopausal osteoporosis.

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3145 Impact Assessment of Lean Practices on Social Sustainability Indicators: An Approach Using ISM Method

Authors: Aline F. Marcon, Eduardo F. da Silva, Marina Bouzon

Abstract:

The impact of lean management on environmental sustainability is the research line that receives the most attention from academicians. Therefore, the social dimension of sustainable development has so far received less attention. This paper aims to evaluate the impact of intra-plant lean manufacturing practices on social sustainability indicators extracted from the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) parameters. The method is two-phased, including MCDM approach to uncover the most relevant practices regarding social performance and Interpretive Structural Modeling (ISM) method to reveal the structural relationship among lean practices. Professionals from the academic and industrial fields answered the questionnaires. From the results of this paper, it is possible to verify that practices such as “Safety Improvement Programs”, “Total Quality Management” and “Cross-functional Workforce” are the ones which have the most positive influence on the set of GRI social indicators.

Keywords: Indicators, ISM, lean, social, sustainability.

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3144 Trends, Problems and Needs of Urban Housing in Malaysia

Authors: Salfarina A.G., Nor Malina M., Azrina H.

Abstract:

The right to housing is a basic need while good quality and affordable housing is a reflection of a high quality of life. However, housing remains a major problem for most, especially for the bottom billions. Satisfaction on housing and neighbourhood conditions are one of the important indicators that reflect quality of life. These indicators are also important in the process of evaluating housing policy with the objective to increase the quality of housing and neighbourhood. The research method is purely based on a quantitative method, using a survey. The findings show that housing purchasing trend in urban Malaysia is determined by demographic profiles, mainly by education level, age, gender and income. The period of housing ownership also influenced the socio-cultural interactions and satisfaction of house owners with their neighbourhoods. The findings also show that the main concerns for house buyers in urban areas are price and location of the house. Respondents feel that houses in urban Malaysia is too expensive and beyond their affordability. Location of houses and distance from work place are also regarded as the main concern. However, respondents are fairly satisfied with religious and socio-cultural facilities in the housing areas and most importantly not many regard ethnicity as an issue in their decision-making, when buying a house.

Keywords: Housing, Urban Housing, Malaysia

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3143 Observatory of Sustainability of the Algarve Region for Tourism: Proposal for Environmental and Sociocultural Indicators

Authors: Miguel José Oliveira, Fátima Farinha, Elisa M. J. da Silva, Rui Lança, Manuel Duarte Pinheiro, Cátia Miguel

Abstract:

The Observatory of Sustainability of the Algarve Region for Tourism (OBSERVE) will be a valuable tool to assess the sustainability of this region. The OBSERVE tool is designed to provide data and maintain an up-to-date, consistent set of indicators defined to describe the region on the environmental, sociocultural, economic and institutional domains. This ongoing two-year project has the active participation of the Algarve’s stakeholders, since they were consulted and asked to participate in the discussion for the indicators proposal. The environmental and sociocultural indicators chosen must indicate the characteristics of the region and should be in alignment with other global systems used to monitor the sustainability. This paper presents a review of sustainability indicators systems that support the first proposal for the environmental and sociocultural indicators. Others constraints are discussed, namely the existing data and the data available in digital platforms in a format suitable for automatic importation to the platform of OBSERVE. It is intended that OBSERVE will be a valuable tool to assess the sustainability of the region of Algarve.

Keywords: Sustainability, observatory, environmental indicators, sociocultural indicators, development, tourism, Algarve.

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3142 SolarSPELL Case Study: Pedagogical Quality Indicators to Evaluate Digital Library Resources

Authors: Lorena Alemán de la Garza, Marcela Georgina Gómez-Zermeño

Abstract:

This paper presents the SolarSPELL case study that aims to generate information on the use of indicators that help evaluate the pedagogical quality of a digital library resources. SolarSPELL is a solar-powered digital library with WiFi connectivity. It offers a variety of open educational resources selected for their potential for the digital transformation of educational practices and the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by all United Nations Member States. The case study employed a quantitative methodology and the research instrument was applied to 55 teachers, directors and librarians. The results indicate that it is possible to strengthen the pedagogical quality of open educational resources, through actions focused on improving temporal and technological parameters. They also reveal that users believe that SolarSPELL improves the teaching-learning processes and motivates the teacher to improve his or her development. This study provides valuable information on a tool that supports teaching-learning processes and facilitates connectivity with renewable energies that improves the teacher training in active methodologies for ecosystem learning.

Keywords: Educational innovation, digital library, pedagogical quality, solar energy, teacher training, sustainable development.

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3141 Regression Analysis of Travel Indicators and Public Transport Usage in Urban Areas

Authors: M. Moeinaddini, Z. Asadi-Shekari, M. Zaly Shah, A. Hamzah

Abstract:

Currently, planners try to have more green travel options to decrease economic, social and environmental problems. Therefore, this study tries to find significant urban travel factors to be used to increase the usage of alternative urban travel modes. This paper attempts to identify the relationship between prominent urban mobility indicators and daily trips by public transport in 30 cities from various parts of the world. Different travel modes, infrastructures and cost indicators were evaluated in this research as mobility indicators. The results of multi-linear regression analysis indicate that there is a significant relationship between mobility indicators and the daily usage of public transport.

Keywords: Green travel modes, urban travel indicators, daily trips by public transport, multi-linear regression analysis.

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3140 The Influence of Architectural-Planning Structure of Cities on Their Sustainable Development

Authors: M. Kashiripoor

Abstract:

Existing indicators for sustainable urban development do not identify the features of cities’ planning structures and their architecture. Iranian city has special relevance problem of assessing the conformity of their planning and development of the concept of sustainable development. Based on theoretical sources, the author concludes that, despite the existence of common indicators for sustainable development of settlements, specialized evaluation criteria city structure planning has not been developed. He is trying to fill this gap and put forward a system of indicators characterizing the level of development of the architectural-planning structure of the city. The proposed system of indicators is designed based on technical and economic urban standard indicators from different countries. Alternative designing systems and requirements of modern rating systems like LEED-ND comprise a criterion for evaluation of urban structures in accordance with principles of "Green" building and New Urbanism. Urban development trends are close in spirit of sustainable development and developed under its influence. The study allowed concluding that a system of indicators to identify the relevant architectural-planning structure of the city, requirements of sustainable development, should be adapted to the conditions of each country, particularly in Iran. The article attempts typology proposed indicators, which are presented in tabular form and are divided into two types: planning and spatial. This article discusses the known indicators of sustainable development and proposed specific system of indicators characterizing the level of development of architectural-planning structure of the city. This article examines indicators for evaluating level of city' planning structure development. The proposed system of indicators is derived from the urban planning standards and rating systems such as LEED-ND, BREEAM Community and CASBEE-UD.

Keywords: Architectural-planning structure of cities, urban planning indicators, urban space indicators.

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3139 Analysis of the Evolution of Social and Economic Indicators of the Mercosur´s Members: 1980-2012

Authors: L. Aparecida Bastos, J. Leige Lopes, J. Crepaldi, R. Monteiro da Silva

Abstract:

The objective of this study is to analyze the evolution of some social and economic indicators of Mercosur´s economies from 1980 to 2012, based on the statistics of the Latin American Integration Association (LAIA). The objective is to observe if after the accession of these economies to Mercosur (the first accessions occurred in 1994) these indicators showed better performance, in order to demonstrate if economic integration contributed to improved trade, macroeconomic performance, and level of social and economic development of member countries. To this end, the methodologies used will be a literature review and descriptive statistics. The theoretical framework that guides the work are the theories of Integration: Classical Liberal, Marxist and structural-proactive. The results reveal that most social and economic indicators showed better performance in those economies that joined Mercosur after 1994. This work is the result of an investigation already completed.

Keywords: Economic integration, mercosur, social indicators, economic indicators.

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3138 Banks Profitability Indicators in CEE Countries

Authors: I. Erins, J. Erina

Abstract:

The aim of the present article is to determine the impact of the external and internal factors of bank performance on the profitability indicators of the CEE countries banks in the period from 2006 to 2012. On the basis of research conducted abroad on bank and macroeconomic profitability indicators, in order to obtain research results, the authors evaluated return on average assets (ROAA) and return on average equity (ROAE) indicators of the CEE countries banks. The authors analyzed profitability indicators of banks using descriptive methods, SPSS data analysis methods, as well as data correlation and linear regression analysis. The authors concluded that most internal and external indicators of bank performance have no direct influence the profitability of the banks in the CEE countries. The only exceptions are credit risk and bank size, which affect one of the measures of bank profitability – return on average equity.

Keywords: Banks, CEE countries, Profitability ROAA, ROAE.

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3137 eLearning Tools Evaluation based on Quality Concept Distance Computing. A Case Study

Authors: Mihai Caramihai, Irina Severin

Abstract:

Despite the extensive use of eLearning systems, there is no consensus on a standard framework for evaluating this kind of quality system. Hence, there is only a minimum set of tools that can supervise this judgment and gives information about the course content value. This paper presents two kinds of quality set evaluation indicators for eLearning courses based on the computational process of three known metrics, the Euclidian, Hamming and Levenshtein distances. The “distance" calculus is applied to standard evaluation templates (i.e. the European Commission Programme procedures vs. the AFNOR Z 76-001 Standard), determining a reference point in the evaluation of the e-learning course quality vs. the optimal concept(s). The case study, based on the results of project(s) developed in the framework of the European Programme “Leonardo da Vinci", with Romanian contractors, try to put into evidence the benefits of such a method.

Keywords: eLearning, European programme, metrics, quality evaluation

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3136 Cognitive Virtual Exploration for Optimization Model Reduction

Authors: Livier Serna, Xavier Fischer, Fouad Bennis

Abstract:

In this paper, a decision aid method for preoptimization is presented. The method is called “negotiation", and it is based on the identification, formulation, modeling and use of indicators defined as “negotiation indicators". These negotiation indicators are used to explore the solution space by means of a classbased approach. The classes are subdomains for the negotiation indicators domain. They represent equivalent cognitive solutions in terms of the negotiation indictors being used. By this method, we reduced the size of the solution space and the criteria, thus aiding the optimization methods. We present an example to show the method.

Keywords: Optimization Model Reduction, Pre-Optimization, Negotiation Process, Class-Making, Cognition Based VirtualExploration.

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3135 Review and Classification of the Indicators and Trends Used in Bridge Performance Modeling

Authors: S. Rezaei, Z. Mirzaei, M. Khalighi, J. Bahrami

Abstract:

Bridges, as an essential part of road infrastructures, are affected by various deterioration mechanisms over time due to the changes in their performance. As changes in performance can have many negative impacts on society, it is essential to be able to evaluate and measure the performance of bridges throughout their life. This evaluation includes the development or the choice of the appropriate performance indicators, which, in turn, are measured based on the selection of appropriate models for the existing deterioration mechanism. The purpose of this article is a statistical study of indicators and deterioration mechanisms of bridges in order to discover further research capacities in bridges performance assessment. For this purpose, some of the most common indicators of bridge performance, including reliability, risk, vulnerability, robustness, and resilience, were selected. The researches performed on each index based on the desired deterioration mechanisms and hazards were comprehensively reviewed. In addition, the formulation of the indicators and their relationship with each other were studied. The research conducted on the mentioned indicators were classified from the point of view of deterministic or probabilistic method, the level of study (element level, object level, etc.), and the type of hazard and the deterioration mechanism of interest. For each of the indicators, a number of challenges and recommendations were presented according to the review of previous studies.

Keywords: Bridge, deterioration mechanism, lifecycle, performance indicator.

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3134 Performance Indicators for Benchmarking of Internal Supply Chain Management

Authors: Kailash, Rajeev Kumar Saha, Sanjeev Goyal

Abstract:

Each and every manufacturing industry has a goal that describes its purpose and destination. The goal of any industry may be achieved by team work and managerial skills of all departments. However, achieving goals and objectives is not enough to improve the internal supply chain management performance of manufacturing industries therefore proper identification of performance indicators for benchmarking of internal supply chain management is essential for the growth of manufacturing industry. The identification of benchmarking performance indicators and their impact on internal supply chain management performance is vital for productivity and performance improvement. This study identifies the benchmarking performance indicators to improve internal supply chain performance of Indian manufacturing industries through literature review.

Keywords: Benchmarking, Internal supply chain management, performance indicators, scenario of Indian manufacturing industries.

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3133 Towards Assessment of Indicators Influence on Innovativeness of Countries' Economies: Selected Soft Computing Approaches

Authors: Marta Czyżewska, Krzysztof Pancerz, Jarosław Szkoła

Abstract:

The aim of this paper is to assess the influence of several indicators determining innovativeness of countries' economies by applying selected soft computing methods. Such methods enable us to identify correlations between indicators for period 2006-2010. The main attention in the paper is focused on selecting proper computer tools for solving this problem. As a tool supporting identification, the X-means clustering algorithm, the Apriori rules generation algorithm as well as Self-Organizing Feature Maps (SOMs) have been selected. The paper has rather a rudimentary character. We briefly describe usefulness of the selected approaches and indicate some challenges for further research.

Keywords: Assessment of indicators, innovativeness, soft computing.

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3132 A Metric Framework for Analysis of Quality of Object Oriented Design

Authors: Amandeep Kaur, Satwinder Singh, Dr. K. S. Kahlon

Abstract:

The impact of OO design on software quality characteristics such as defect density and rework by mean of experimental validation. Encapsulation, inheritance, polymorphism, reusability, Data hiding and message-passing are the major attribute of an Object Oriented system. In order to evaluate the quality of an Object oriented system the above said attributes can act as indicators. The metrics are the well known quantifiable approach to express any attribute. Hence, in this paper we tried to formulate a framework of metrics representing the attributes of object oriented system. Empirical Data is collected from three different projects based on object oriented paradigms to calculate the metrics.

Keywords: Object Oriented, Software metrics, Methods, Attributes, cohesion, coupling, Inheritance.

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3131 Identification of Social Responsibility Factors within Mega Construction Projects

Authors: Ali Alotaibi, Francis Edum-Fotwe, Andrew Price /

Abstract:

Mega construction projects create buildings and major infrastructure to respond to work and life requirements while playing a vital role in promoting any nation’s economy. However, the industry is often criticised for not balancing economic, environmental and social dimensions of their projects, with emphasis typically on one aspect to the detriment of the others. This has resulted in many negative impacts including environmental pollution, waste throughout the project lifecycle, low productivity, and avoidable accidents. The identification of comprehensive Social Responsibility (SR) indicators, which combine social, environmental and economic aspects, is urgently needed. This is particularly the case in the context of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), which often has mega public construction projects. The aim of this paper is to develop a set of wide-ranging SR indicators which encompass social, economic and environmental aspects unique to the KSA. A qualitative approach was applied to explore relevant indicators through a review of the existing literature, international standards and reports. A list of appropriate indicators was developed, and its comprehensiveness was corroborated by interviews with experts on mega construction projects working with SR concepts in the KSA. The findings present 39 indicators and their metrics, covering 10 economic, 12 environmental and 17 social aspects of SR mapped against their references. These indicators are a valuable reference for decision-makers and academics in the KSA to understand factors related to SR in mega construction projects. The indicators are related to mega construction projects within the KSA and require validation in a real case scenario or within a different industry to demonstrate their generalisability.

Keywords: Social responsibility, construction projects, economic, social, environmental, indicators.

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3130 The Impact of Selected Economic Indicators for the Development of Zlin Region in the Czech Republic

Authors: D. Charvatova, Z. Charvat

Abstract:

This article considers with the influence of selected economic indicators for the development of the Zlin region. Development of the region is mainly influenced by business entities which are located in the region, as well as investors who contribute to the development of regions. For the development of the region it is necessary for skilled workers remain in the region and not to leave these skilled workers. The above-mentioned and other factors are affecting the development of each region.

Keywords: Macroeconomic indicators, population, the overallincrease in population, location and area, territory, Zlin Region.

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3129 Estimation of Missing or Incomplete Data in Road Performance Measurement Systems

Authors: Kristjan Kuhi, Kati K. Kaare, Ott Koppel

Abstract:

Modern management in most fields is performance based; both planning and implementation of maintenance and operational activities are driven by appropriately defined performance indicators. Continuous real-time data collection for management is becoming feasible due to technological advancements. Outdated and insufficient input data may result in incorrect decisions. When using deterministic models the uncertainty of the object state is not visible thus applying the deterministic models are more likely to give false diagnosis. Constructing structured probabilistic models of the performance indicators taking into consideration the surrounding indicator environment enables to estimate the trustworthiness of the indicator values. It also assists to fill gaps in data to improve the quality of the performance analysis and management decisions. In this paper authors discuss the application of probabilistic graphical models in the road performance measurement and propose a high-level conceptual model that enables analyzing and predicting more precisely future pavement deterioration based on road utilization.

Keywords: Probabilistic graphical models, performance indicators, road performance management, data collection

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3128 Logistics Outsourcing: Performance Models and Financial and Operational Indicators

Authors: Carlos Sanchís-Pedregosa, José A. D. M achuca, María del Mar González-Zamora

Abstract:

The growing outsourcing of logistics services resulting from the ongoing current in firms of costs reduction/increased efficiency means that it is becoming more and more important for the companies doing the outsourcing to carry out a proper evaluation. The multiple definitions and measures of logistics service performance found in research on the topic create a certain degree of confusion and do not clear the way towards the proper measurement of their performance. Do a model and a specific set of indicators exist that can be considered appropriate for measuring the performance of logistics services outsourcing in industrial environments? Are said indicators in keeping with the objectives pursued by outsourcing? We aim to answer these and other research questions in the study we have initiated in the field within the framework of the international High Performance Manufacturing (HPM) project of which this paper forms part. As the first stage of this research, this paper reviews articles dealing with the topic published in the last 15 years with the aim of detecting the models most used to make this measurement and determining which performance indicators are proposed as part of said models and which are most used. The first steps are also taken in determining whether these indicators, financial and operational, cover the aims that are being pursued when outsourcing logistics services. The findings show there is a wide variety of both models and indicators used. This would seem to testify to the need to continue with our research in order to try to propose a model and a set of indicators for measuring the performance of logistics services outsourcing in industrial environments.

Keywords: Logistics, objectives, outsourcing, performancemeasurement systems

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3127 Forecasting e-Learning Efficiency by Using Artificial Neural Networks and a Balanced Score Card

Authors: Petar Halachev

Abstract:

Forecasting the values of the indicators, which characterize the effectiveness of performance of organizations is of great importance for their successful development. Such forecasting is necessary in order to assess the current state and to foresee future developments, so that measures to improve the organization-s activity could be undertaken in time. The article presents an overview of the applied mathematical and statistical methods for developing forecasts. Special attention is paid to artificial neural networks as a forecasting tool. Their strengths and weaknesses are analyzed and a synopsis is made of the application of artificial neural networks in the field of forecasting of the values of different education efficiency indicators. A method of evaluation of the activity of universities using the Balanced Scorecard is proposed and Key Performance Indicators for assessment of e-learning are selected. Resulting indicators for the evaluation of efficiency of the activity are proposed. An artificial neural network is constructed and applied in the forecasting of the values of indicators for e-learning efficiency on the basis of the KPI values.

Keywords: artificial neural network, balanced scorecard, e-learning

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3126 Integrating Geographic Information into Diabetes Disease Management

Authors: Tsu-Yun Chiu, Tsung-Hsueh Lu, Tain-Junn Cheng

Abstract:

Background: Traditional chronic disease management did not pay attention to effects of geographic factors on the compliance of treatment regime, which resulted in geographic inequality in outcomes of chronic disease management. This study aims to examine the geographic distribution and clustering of quality indicators of diabetes care. Method: We first extracted address, demographic information and quality of care indicators (number of visits, complications, prescription and laboratory records) of patients with diabetes for 2014 from medical information system in a medical center in Tainan City, Taiwan, and the patients’ addresses were transformed into district- and village-level data. We then compared the differences of geographic distribution and clustering of quality of care indicators between districts and villages. Despite the descriptive results, rate ratios and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated for indices of care in order to compare the quality of diabetes care among different areas. Results: A total of 23,588 patients with diabetes were extracted from the hospital data system; whereas 12,716 patients’ information and medical records were included to the following analysis. More than half of the subjects in this study were male and between 60-79 years old. Furthermore, the quality of diabetes care did indeed vary by geographical levels. Thru the smaller level, we could point out clustered areas more specifically. Fuguo Village (of Yongkang District) and Zhiyi Village (of Sinhua District) were found to be “hotspots” for nephropathy and cerebrovascular disease; while Wangliau Village and Erwang Village (of Yongkang District) would be “coldspots” for lowest proportion of ≥80% compliance to blood lipids examination. On the other hand, Yuping Village (in Anping District) was the area with the lowest proportion of ≥80% compliance to all laboratory examination. Conclusion: In spite of examining the geographic distribution, calculating rate ratios and their 95% CI could also be a useful and consistent method to test the association. This information is useful for health planners, diabetes case managers and other affiliate practitioners to organize care resources to the areas most needed.

Keywords: Geocoding, chronic disease management, quality of diabetes care, rate ratio.

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3125 Irrigation Water Quality Evaluation Based on Multivariate Statistical Analysis: A Case Study of Jiaokou Irrigation District

Authors: Panpan Xu, Qiying Zhang, Hui Qian

Abstract:

Groundwater is main source of water supply in the Guanzhong Basin, China. To investigate the quality of groundwater for agricultural purposes in Jiaokou Irrigation District located in the east of the Guanzhong Basin, 141 groundwater samples were collected for analysis of major ions (K+, Na+, Mg2+, Ca2+, SO42-, Cl-, HCO3-, and CO32-), pH, and total dissolved solids (TDS). Sodium percentage (Na%), residual sodium carbonate (RSC), magnesium hazard (MH), and potential salinity (PS) were applied for irrigation water quality assessment. In addition, multivariate statistical techniques were used to identify the underlying hydrogeochemical processes. Results show that the content of TDS mainly depends on Cl-, Na+, Mg2+, and SO42-, and the HCO3- content is generally high except for the eastern sand area. These are responsible for complex hydrogeochemical processes, such as dissolution of carbonate minerals (dolomite and calcite), gypsum, halite, and silicate minerals, the cation exchange, as well as evaporation and concentration. The average evaluation levels of Na%, RSC, MH, and PS for irrigation water quality are doubtful, good, unsuitable, and injurious to unsatisfactory, respectively. Therefore, it is necessary for decision makers to comprehensively consider the indicators and thus reasonably evaluate the irrigation water quality.

Keywords: Irrigation water quality, multivariate statistical analysis, groundwater, hydrogeochemical process.

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3124 Food Security in the Middle East and North Africa

Authors: Sara D. Garduño-Diaz, Philippe Y. Garduño-Diaz

Abstract:

To date, one of the few comprehensive indicators for the measurement of food security is the Global Food Security Index (GFSI). This index is a dynamic quantitative and qualitative benchmarking model, constructed from 28 unique indicators, that measures drivers of food security across both developing and developed countries. Whereas the GFSI has been calculated across a set of 109 countries, in this paper we aim to present and compare, for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), 1) the Food Security Index scores achieved and 2) the data available on affordability, availability, and quality of food. The data for this work was taken from the latest available report published by the creators of the GFSI, which in turn used information from national and international statistical sources. MENA countries rank from place 17/109 (Israel, although with resent political turmoil this is likely to have changed) to place 91/109 (Yemen) with household expenditure spent in food ranging from 15.5% (Israel) to 60% (Egypt). Lower spending on food as a share of household consumption in most countries and better food safety net programs in the MENA have contributed to a notable increase in food affordability. The region has also, however, experienced a decline in food availability, owing to more limited food supplies and higher volatility of agricultural production. In terms of food quality and safety the MENA has the top ranking country (Israel). The most frequent challenges faced by the countries of the MENA include public expenditure on agricultural research and development as well as volatility of agricultural production. Food security is a complex phenomenon that interacts with many other indicators of a country’s wellbeing; in the MENA it is slowly but markedly improving.

Keywords: Diet, food insecurity, global food security index, nutrition, sustainability.

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3123 Dynamic Performance Indicators for Aged-Care Construction Projects

Authors: Norman Wu, Darren Sun

Abstract:

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are used for post result evaluation in the construction industry, and they normally do not have provisions for changes. This paper proposes a set of dynamic key performance indicators (d-KPIs) which predicts the future performance of the activity being measured and presents the opportunity to change practice accordingly. Critical to the predictability of a construction project is the ability to achieve automated data collection. This paper proposes an effective way to collect the process and engineering management data from an integrated construction management system. The d-KPI matrix, consisting of various indicators under seven categories, developed from this study can be applied to close monitoring of the development projects of aged-care facilities. The d-KPI matrix also enables performance measurement and comparison at both project and organization levels.

Keywords: Aged-care project, construction, dynamic KPI, healthcare system.

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3122 Environmental Assessment Methods in Abu Dhabi

Authors: Huda Al Salmi, Hisham Al Kadi, Simone Leao

Abstract:

Abu Dhabi is one of the fastest developed cities in the region. On top of all the current and future environmental challenges, Abu Dhabi aims to be among the top governments in the world in sustainable development. Abu Dhabi plans to create an attractive, livable and sustainable managed urban environment in which all necessary services and infrastructure are provided in a sustainable and timely manner. Abu Dhabi is engaged in a difficult challenge to develop credible environmental indicators that would assess the ambitious environmental targets. The aim of those indicators is to provide reliable guidance to decision makers and the public concerning key factors that determine the state of urban environment and identify major areas for policy intervention. In order to ensure sustainable development in UAE in general, and of Abu Dhabi City in particular, relevant and contextual environmental indicators need to be carefully considered. These indicators provide a gauge at a national government scale of how close countries are to establish environmental policy goals. The environment indicators assist city decision-making in such areas as identification of significant environmental aspects and observation of environmental performance trends. Those can help to find ways of reducing environmental pollution and in improving eco-efficiency. This paper outlines recent strategies implemented in Abu Dhabi that aims to improve the sustainable performance of the city-s built environment. The paper explores the variety of current and possible indicators at different levels and their roles in the development of the city.

Keywords: Abu Dhabi, Sustainable Development, Indicators, Assessment Methods.

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