Science.gov

Sample records for improved economic diversity

  1. Cultural Diversity, Economic Development and Societal Instability

    PubMed Central

    Nettle, Daniel; Grace, James B.; Choisy, Marc; Cornell, Howard V.; Guégan, Jean-François; Hochberg, Michael E.

    2007-01-01

    Background Social scientists have suggested that cultural diversity in a nation leads to societal instability. However, societal instability may be affected not only by within-nation or α diversity, but also diversity between a nation and its neighbours or β diversity. It is also necessary to distinguish different domains of diversity, namely linguistic, ethnic and religious, and to distinguish between the direct effects of diversity on societal instability, and effects that are mediated by economic conditions. Methodology/Principal Findings We assembled a large cross-national dataset with information on α and β cultural diversity, economic conditions, and indices of societal instability. Structural equation modeling was used to evaluate the direct and indirect effects of cultural diversity on economics and societal stability. Results show that different types and domains of diversity have interacting effects. As previously documented, linguistic α diversity has a negative effect on economic performance, and we show that it is largely through this economic mechanism that it affects societal instability. For β diversity, the higher the linguistic diversity among nations in a region, the less stable the nation. But, religious β diversity has the opposite effect, reducing instability, particularly in the presence of high linguistic diversity. Conclusions Within-nation linguistic diversity is associated with reduced economic performance, which, in turn, increases societal instability. Nations which differ linguistically from their neighbors are also less stable. However, religious diversity between neighboring nations has the opposite effect, decreasing societal instability. PMID:17895970

  2. Cultural diversity, economic development and societal instability

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nettle, D.; Grace, J.B.; Choisy, M.; Cornell, H.V.; Guegan, J.-F.; Hochberg, M.E.

    2007-01-01

    Background. Social scientists have suggested that cultural diversity in a nation leads to societal instability. However, societal instability may be affected not only by within-nation on ?? diversity, but also diversity between a nation and its neighbours or ?? diversity. It is also necessary to distinguish different domains of diversity, namely linguistic, ethnic and religious, and to distinguish between the direct effects of diversity on societal instability, and effects that are mediated by economic conditions. Methodology/Principal Findings. We assembled a large cross-national dataset with information on ?? and ?? cultural diversity, economic conditions, and indices of societal instability. Structural equation modeling was used to evaluate the direct and indirect effects of cultural diversity on economics and societal stability. Results show that different type and domains of diversity have interacting effects. As previously documented, linguistic ?? diversity has a negative effect on economic performance, and we show that it is largely through this economic mechanism that it affects societal instability. For ?? diversity, the higher the linguistic diversity among nations in a region, the less stable the nation. But, religious ?? diversity has the opposite effect, reducing instability, particularly in the presence of high linguistic diversity. Conclusions. Within-nation linguistic diversity is associated with reduced economic performance, which, in turn, increases societal instability. Nations which differ linguistically from their neighbors are also less stable. However, religious diversity between, neighboring nations has the opposite effect, decreasing societal instability.

  3. Office of Economic Impact and Diversity 2003 annual report

    SciTech Connect

    None, None

    2004-05-01

    This report covers a one-year period in which the Office successfully completed several major activities. The Office of Economic Impact and Diversity (ED) is responsible for the development and implementation of Department-wide polices in the areas of small business, diversity and minority economic development. ED oversees civil rights laws, rules, and regulations, and establishes Department-wide civil rights policy. Additionally, ED promotes excellence in the workplace and adheres to the objectives stated below relative to the President’s Management Agenda (PMA): Strategic management of human capital; Competitive sourcing; Improved financial performance; Expanded electronic government, and Budget and performance integration

  4. Socio-Economic Diversity and Mathematical Competences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thiel, Oliver

    2012-01-01

    The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) has proved that in Germany the impact that socio-economic background has on 15-year-old pupils' achievement is stronger than in other countries. The Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) showed that the correlation is less with 10-year-old children, but is still apparent.…

  5. Political diversity will improve social psychological science.

    PubMed

    Duarte, José L; Crawford, Jarret T; Stern, Charlotta; Haidt, Jonathan; Jussim, Lee; Tetlock, Philip E

    2015-01-01

    Psychologists have demonstrated the value of diversity--particularly diversity of viewpoints--for enhancing creativity, discovery, and problem solving. But one key type of viewpoint diversity is lacking in academic psychology in general and social psychology in particular: political diversity. This article reviews the available evidence and finds support for four claims: (1) Academic psychology once had considerable political diversity, but has lost nearly all of it in the last 50 years. (2) This lack of political diversity can undermine the validity of social psychological science via mechanisms such as the embedding of liberal values into research questions and methods, steering researchers away from important but politically unpalatable research topics, and producing conclusions that mischaracterize liberals and conservatives alike. (3) Increased political diversity would improve social psychological science by reducing the impact of bias mechanisms such as confirmation bias, and by empowering dissenting minorities to improve the quality of the majority's thinking. (4) The underrepresentation of non-liberals in social psychology is most likely due to a combination of self-selection, hostile climate, and discrimination. We close with recommendations for increasing political diversity in social psychology. PMID:25036715

  6. Political diversity will improve social psychological science.

    PubMed

    Duarte, José L; Crawford, Jarret T; Stern, Charlotta; Haidt, Jonathan; Jussim, Lee; Tetlock, Philip E

    2015-01-01

    Psychologists have demonstrated the value of diversity--particularly diversity of viewpoints--for enhancing creativity, discovery, and problem solving. But one key type of viewpoint diversity is lacking in academic psychology in general and social psychology in particular: political diversity. This article reviews the available evidence and finds support for four claims: (1) Academic psychology once had considerable political diversity, but has lost nearly all of it in the last 50 years. (2) This lack of political diversity can undermine the validity of social psychological science via mechanisms such as the embedding of liberal values into research questions and methods, steering researchers away from important but politically unpalatable research topics, and producing conclusions that mischaracterize liberals and conservatives alike. (3) Increased political diversity would improve social psychological science by reducing the impact of bias mechanisms such as confirmation bias, and by empowering dissenting minorities to improve the quality of the majority's thinking. (4) The underrepresentation of non-liberals in social psychology is most likely due to a combination of self-selection, hostile climate, and discrimination. We close with recommendations for increasing political diversity in social psychology.

  7. Student Diversity, Choice, and School Improvement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Willie, Charles V.; Edwards, Ralph; Alves, Michael J.

    This book examines research about trends affecting public school diversity, improvement, and choice. It finds that schools with socioeconomically and racially diversified student bodies are more effective learning communities than schools that are poverty-concentrated and racially homogenous; public school choice implemented via the controlled…

  8. Program Diversity in Higher Education: An Economic Perspective.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dill, David D.; Teixeira, Pedro

    2000-01-01

    Suggests an economic perspective for defining and measuring academic diversity in terms of program innovation, not only in teaching, research, and public service activities, but also in the processes of production and markets served. Such a perspective would also provide valuable theoretical frameworks for exploring important questions of how…

  9. Diverse crowds using diverse methods improves the scientific dialectic.

    PubMed

    Motyl, Matt; Iyer, Ravi

    2015-01-01

    In science, diversity is vital to the development of new knowledge. We agree with Duarte et al. that we need more political diversity in social psychology, but contend that we need more religious diversity and methodological diversity as well. If some diversity is good, more is better (especially in science).

  10. Diversity improves performance in excitable networks

    PubMed Central

    Copelli, Mauro; Roberts, James A.

    2016-01-01

    As few real systems comprise indistinguishable units, diversity is a hallmark of nature. Diversity among interacting units shapes properties of collective behavior such as synchronization and information transmission. However, the benefits of diversity on information processing at the edge of a phase transition, ordinarily assumed to emerge from identical elements, remain largely unexplored. Analyzing a general model of excitable systems with heterogeneous excitability, we find that diversity can greatly enhance optimal performance (by two orders of magnitude) when distinguishing incoming inputs. Heterogeneous systems possess a subset of specialized elements whose capability greatly exceeds that of the nonspecialized elements. We also find that diversity can yield multiple percolation, with performance optimized at tricriticality. Our results are robust in specific and more realistic neuronal systems comprising a combination of excitatory and inhibitory units, and indicate that diversity-induced amplification can be harnessed by neuronal systems for evaluating stimulus intensities. PMID:27168961

  11. Improving Diversity in the Health Professions.

    PubMed

    Valentine, Peggy; Wynn, Jacqueline; McLean, Darius

    2016-01-01

    The health professional workforce of North Carolina does not reflect the rich diversity of the state's population, and the underrepresentation of various demographic groups in health care may affect the health outcomes of the state's citizens. There are opportunities for educational institutions to partner with others, share successful strategies, and implement measures to promote diversity among health professionals. PMID:26961841

  12. Integrating diverse datasets improves developmental enhancer prediction.

    PubMed

    Erwin, Genevieve D; Oksenberg, Nir; Truty, Rebecca M; Kostka, Dennis; Murphy, Karl K; Ahituv, Nadav; Pollard, Katherine S; Capra, John A

    2014-06-01

    Gene-regulatory enhancers have been identified using various approaches, including evolutionary conservation, regulatory protein binding, chromatin modifications, and DNA sequence motifs. To integrate these different approaches, we developed EnhancerFinder, a two-step method for distinguishing developmental enhancers from the genomic background and then predicting their tissue specificity. EnhancerFinder uses a multiple kernel learning approach to integrate DNA sequence motifs, evolutionary patterns, and diverse functional genomics datasets from a variety of cell types. In contrast with prediction approaches that define enhancers based on histone marks or p300 sites from a single cell line, we trained EnhancerFinder on hundreds of experimentally verified human developmental enhancers from the VISTA Enhancer Browser. We comprehensively evaluated EnhancerFinder using cross validation and found that our integrative method improves the identification of enhancers over approaches that consider a single type of data, such as sequence motifs, evolutionary conservation, or the binding of enhancer-associated proteins. We find that VISTA enhancers active in embryonic heart are easier to identify than enhancers active in several other embryonic tissues, likely due to their uniquely high GC content. We applied EnhancerFinder to the entire human genome and predicted 84,301 developmental enhancers and their tissue specificity. These predictions provide specific functional annotations for large amounts of human non-coding DNA, and are significantly enriched near genes with annotated roles in their predicted tissues and lead SNPs from genome-wide association studies. We demonstrate the utility of EnhancerFinder predictions through in vivo validation of novel embryonic gene regulatory enhancers from three developmental transcription factor loci. Our genome-wide developmental enhancer predictions are freely available as a UCSC Genome Browser track, which we hope will enable

  13. Trust-aware recommendation for improving aggregate diversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Haifeng; Bai, Xiaomei; Yang, Zhuo; Tolba, Amr; Xia, Feng

    2015-10-01

    Recommender systems are becoming increasingly important and prevalent because of the ability of solving information overload. In recent years, researchers are paying increasing attention to aggregate diversity as a key metric beyond accuracy, because improving aggregate recommendation diversity may increase long tails and sales diversity. Trust is often used to improve recommendation accuracy. However, how to utilize trust to improve aggregate recommendation diversity is unexplored. In this paper, we focus on solving this problem and propose a novel trust-aware recommendation method by incorporating time factor into similarity computation. The rationale underlying the proposed method is that, trustees with later creation time of trust relation can bring more diverse items to recommend to their trustors than other trustees with earlier creation time of trust relation. Through relevant experiments on publicly available dataset, we demonstrate that the proposed method outperforms the baseline method in terms of aggregate diversity while maintaining almost the same recall.

  14. Crowd avoidance and diversity in socio-economic systems and recommendations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gualdi, S.; Medo, M.; Zhang, Y.-C.

    2013-01-01

    Recommender systems recommend objects regardless of potential adverse effects of their overcrowding. We address this shortcoming by introducing crowd-avoiding recommendation where each object can be shared by only a limited number of users or where object utility diminishes with the number of users sharing it. We use real data to show that contrary to expectations, the introduction of these constraints enhances recommendation accuracy and diversity even in systems where overcrowding is not detrimental. The observed accuracy improvements are explained in terms of removing potential bias of the recommendation method. We finally propose a way to model artificial socio-economic systems with crowd avoidance and obtain first analytical results.

  15. Teachers' Beliefs about Culturally, Linguistically, and Economically Diverse Gifted Students: A Quantitative Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    de Wet, Catharina F.; Gubbins, E. Jean

    2011-01-01

    This study investigated teachers' beliefs about culturally, linguistically, and economically diverse (CLED) gifted students. The newly developed "Teachers' Beliefs About Culturally, Linguistically, and Economically Diverse Gifted Students Survey" was administered to a stratified, random sample of 4,000 teachers from eight states. Three hundred and…

  16. Improved Differential Evolution for Combined Heat and Power Economic Dispatch

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jena, C.; Basu, M.; Panigrahi, C. K.

    2016-04-01

    This paper presents an improved differential evolution to solve non-smooth non-convex combined heat and power economic dispatch (CHPED) problem. Valve-point loading and prohibited operating zones of conventional thermal generators are taken into account. Differential evolution (DE) exploits the differences of randomly sampled pairs of objective vectors for its mutation process. Consequently the variation between vectors will outfit the objective function toward the optimization process and therefore provides efficient global optimization capability. However, although DE is shown to be precise, fast as well as robust, its search efficiency will be impaired during solution process with fast descending diversity of population. This paper proposes Gaussian random variable instead of scaling factor which improves search efficiency. The effectiveness of the proposed method has been verified on four test systems. The results of the proposed approach are compared with those obtained by other evolutionary methods. It is found that the proposed improved differential evolution based approach is able to provide better solution.

  17. Does State Legislation Improve Nursing Workforce Diversity?

    PubMed

    Travers, Jasmine; Smaldone, Arlene; Cohn, Elizabeth Gross

    2015-08-01

    A health-care workforce representative of our nation's diversity is a health and research priority. Although racial and ethnic minorities represent 37% of Americans, they comprise only 16% of the nursing workforce. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of state legislation on minority recruitment to nursing. Using data from the National Conference of State Legislatures, American Association of Colleges of Nursing, and U.S. census, we compared minority enrollment in baccalaureate nursing programs of states (Texas, Virginia, Michigan, California, Florida, Connecticut, and Arkansas) before and 3 years after enacting legislation with geographically adjacent states without legislation. Data were analyzed using descriptive and chi-square statistics. Following legislation, Arkansas (13.8%-24.5%), California (3.3%-5.4%), and Michigan (8.0%-10.0%) significantly increased enrollment of Blacks, and Florida (11.8%-15.4%) and Texas (11.2%-13.9%) significantly increased enrollment of Hispanic baccalaureate nursing students. States that tied legislation to funding, encouragement, and reimbursement had larger enrollment gains and greater minority representation. PMID:26351214

  18. Evolutionary and Political Economic Influences on Biological Diversity in African Americans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jackson, Fatimah Linda Collier

    1993-01-01

    Examines existing data on biological diversity among Americans of African descent within the contexts of their evolutionary backgrounds and political and economic realities. Explores the origins of the diversity, and provides an evolutionary and political economy synthesis for evaluating the biological distinctions apparent among African…

  19. Exoskeletons and economics: indoor arthropod diversity increases in affluent neighbourhoods.

    PubMed

    Leong, Misha; Bertone, Matthew A; Bayless, Keith M; Dunn, Robert R; Trautwein, Michelle D

    2016-08-01

    In urban ecosystems, socioeconomics contribute to patterns of biodiversity. The 'luxury effect', in which wealthier neighbourhoods are more biologically diverse, has been observed for plants, birds, bats and lizards. Here, we used data from a survey of indoor arthropod diversity (defined throughout as family-level richness) from 50 urban houses and found that house size, surrounding vegetation, as well as mean neighbourhood income best predict the number of kinds of arthropods found indoors. Our finding, that homes in wealthier neighbourhoods host higher indoor arthropod diversity (consisting of primarily non-pest species), shows that the luxury effect can extend to the indoor environment. The effect of mean neighbourhood income on indoor arthropod diversity was particularly strong for individual houses that lacked high surrounding vegetation ground cover, suggesting that neighbourhood dynamics can compensate for local choices of homeowners. Our work suggests that the management of neighbourhoods and cities can have effects on biodiversity that can extend from trees and birds all the way to the arthropod life in bedrooms and basements. PMID:27484644

  20. Exoskeletons and economics: indoor arthropod diversity increases in affluent neighbourhoods

    PubMed Central

    Bertone, Matthew A.; Bayless, Keith M.; Dunn, Robert R.; Trautwein, Michelle D.

    2016-01-01

    In urban ecosystems, socioeconomics contribute to patterns of biodiversity. The ‘luxury effect’, in which wealthier neighbourhoods are more biologically diverse, has been observed for plants, birds, bats and lizards. Here, we used data from a survey of indoor arthropod diversity (defined throughout as family-level richness) from 50 urban houses and found that house size, surrounding vegetation, as well as mean neighbourhood income best predict the number of kinds of arthropods found indoors. Our finding, that homes in wealthier neighbourhoods host higher indoor arthropod diversity (consisting of primarily non-pest species), shows that the luxury effect can extend to the indoor environment. The effect of mean neighbourhood income on indoor arthropod diversity was particularly strong for individual houses that lacked high surrounding vegetation ground cover, suggesting that neighbourhood dynamics can compensate for local choices of homeowners. Our work suggests that the management of neighbourhoods and cities can have effects on biodiversity that can extend from trees and birds all the way to the arthropod life in bedrooms and basements. PMID:27484644

  1. Exoskeletons and economics: indoor arthropod diversity increases in affluent neighbourhoods.

    PubMed

    Leong, Misha; Bertone, Matthew A; Bayless, Keith M; Dunn, Robert R; Trautwein, Michelle D

    2016-08-01

    In urban ecosystems, socioeconomics contribute to patterns of biodiversity. The 'luxury effect', in which wealthier neighbourhoods are more biologically diverse, has been observed for plants, birds, bats and lizards. Here, we used data from a survey of indoor arthropod diversity (defined throughout as family-level richness) from 50 urban houses and found that house size, surrounding vegetation, as well as mean neighbourhood income best predict the number of kinds of arthropods found indoors. Our finding, that homes in wealthier neighbourhoods host higher indoor arthropod diversity (consisting of primarily non-pest species), shows that the luxury effect can extend to the indoor environment. The effect of mean neighbourhood income on indoor arthropod diversity was particularly strong for individual houses that lacked high surrounding vegetation ground cover, suggesting that neighbourhood dynamics can compensate for local choices of homeowners. Our work suggests that the management of neighbourhoods and cities can have effects on biodiversity that can extend from trees and birds all the way to the arthropod life in bedrooms and basements.

  2. Economic and policy implications of improving longevity.

    PubMed

    Vladeck, Bruce C

    2005-09-01

    With all the rhetoric surrounding the impending "entitlement crisis" produced by the "graying of America," there has been surprisingly little serious analysis of the social and economic implications of increased longevity and the doubling of the number of elderly people that will occur in this country over the next 30 years. This article identifies five critical areas in which the effect of demographic change will be significant. First, patterns of work life and labor-force participation will almost inevitably change. Second, government expenditures now financed largely by payroll and federal income taxes will increase, whereas those financed by state and local property taxes will fall, at least proportionately. Third, the post-World War II pattern of suburbanized, automobile-dependent communities will pose special challenges to serving an aging population, and new adaptations will need to be developed. Fourth, intrafamily caregiving patterns will necessarily change. Fifth, the level of disability and dependence of older people, for which the rate of change is inherently unpredictable, will have a major effect on all these and other phenomena. Whether one views the net effect of all these changes as a positive or a negative, it is necessary to begin thinking a lot harder and more systematically about all of them. PMID:16131358

  3. Using Cultural Diversity in Teaching Economics: Global Business Implications

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mitry, Darryl J.

    2008-01-01

    Globalization and increasing cross-cultural interactivity have implications for education in general and may also present valuable pedagogical opportunities in the practice of teaching economics for business students. Therefore, the author investigated this proposition and offers some empirical observations from research and teaching experiments.…

  4. Improved, Low-Stress Economical Submerged Pipeline

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, Jack A.; Chao, Yi

    2011-01-01

    A preliminary study has shown that the use of a high-strength composite fiber cloth material may greatly reduce fabrication and deployment costs of a subsea offshore pipeline. The problem is to develop an inexpensive submerged pipeline that can safely and economically transport large quantities of fresh water, oil, and natural gas underwater for long distances. Above-water pipelines are often not feasible due to safety, cost, and environmental problems, and present, fixed-wall, submerged pipelines are often very expensive. The solution is to have a submerged, compliant-walled tube that when filled, is lighter than the surrounding medium. Some examples include compliant tubes for transporting fresh water under the ocean, for transporting crude oil underneath salt or fresh water, and for transporting high-pressure natural gas from offshore to onshore. In each case, the fluid transported is lighter than its surrounding fluid, and thus the flexible tube will tend to float. The tube should be ballasted to the ocean floor so as to limit the motion of the tube in the horizontal and vertical directions. The tube should be placed below 100-m depth to minimize biofouling and turbulence from surface storms. The tube may also have periodic pumps to maintain flow without over-pressurizing, or it can have a single pump at the beginning. The tube may have periodic valves that allow sections of the tube to be repaired or maintained. Some examples of tube materials that may be particularly suited for these applications are non-porous composite tubes made of high-performance fibers such as Kevlar, Spectra, PBO, Aramid, carbon fibers, or high-strength glass. Above-ground pipes for transporting water, oil, and natural gas have typically been fabricated from fiber-reinforced plastic or from more costly high-strength steel. Also, previous suggested subsea pipeline designs have only included heavy fixed-wall pipes that can be very expensive initially, and can be difficult and expensive

  5. The Relations of a School's Capacity for Institutional Diversity to Student Achievement in Socio-Economically, Ethnically, and Linguistically Diverse Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Min, Sookweon; Goff, Peter T.

    2016-01-01

    This study examines how a school's capacity for institutional diversity relates to student achievement in socio-economically, ethnically, and linguistically diverse schools. It also investigates whether various student groups benefit differently from a school's level of student diversity and its institutional capacity for diversity. Using data…

  6. The Road Ahead: Improving Diversity in Graduate Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, C. Dean; Sanchez, George J.; Tierney, William G.

    2004-01-01

    This publication offers an overview of the state of diversity in graduate education and considers the racial and ethnic makeup of the nation's faculty. It then offers recommendations for how to improve graduate education of students of color. The monograph is designed to help faculty, administrators and policy makers by offering strategies that…

  7. A Rapid and Economical Method for Efficient DNA Extraction from Diverse Soils Suitable for Metagenomic Applications.

    PubMed

    Devi, Selvaraju Gayathri; Fathima, Anwar Aliya; Radha, Sudhakar; Arunraj, Rex; Curtis, Wayne R; Ramya, Mohandass

    2015-01-01

    A rapid, cost effective method of metagenomic DNA extraction from soil is a useful tool for environmental microbiology. The present work describes an improved method of DNA extraction namely "powdered glass method" from diverse soils. The method involves the use of sterile glass powder for cell lysis followed by addition of 1% powdered activated charcoal (PAC) as purifying agent to remove humic substances. The method yielded substantial DNA (5.87 ± 0.04 μg/g of soil) with high purity (A260/280: 1.76 ± 0.05) and reduced humic substances (A340: 0.047 ± 0.03). The quality of the extracted DNA was compared against five different methods based on 16S rDNA PCR amplification, BamHI digestion and validated using quantitative PCR. The digested DNA was used for a metagenomic library construction with the transformation efficiency of 4 X 106 CFU mL-1. Besides providing rapid, efficient and economical extraction of metgenomic DNA from diverse soils, this method's applicability is also demonstrated for cultivated organisms (Gram positive B. subtilis NRRL-B-201, Gram negative E. coli MTCC40, and a microalgae C. sorokiniana UTEX#1666). PMID:26167854

  8. A Rapid and Economical Method for Efficient DNA Extraction from Diverse Soils Suitable for Metagenomic Applications

    PubMed Central

    Devi, Selvaraju Gayathri; Fathima, Anwar Aliya; Radha, Sudhakar; Arunraj, Rex; Curtis, Wayne R.; Ramya, Mohandass

    2015-01-01

    A rapid, cost effective method of metagenomic DNA extraction from soil is a useful tool for environmental microbiology. The present work describes an improved method of DNA extraction namely “powdered glass method” from diverse soils. The method involves the use of sterile glass powder for cell lysis followed by addition of 1% powdered activated charcoal (PAC) as purifying agent to remove humic substances. The method yielded substantial DNA (5.87 ± 0.04 μg/g of soil) with high purity (A260/280: 1.76 ± 0.05) and reduced humic substances (A340: 0.047 ± 0.03). The quality of the extracted DNA was compared against five different methods based on 16S rDNA PCR amplification, BamHI digestion and validated using quantitative PCR. The digested DNA was used for a metagenomic library construction with the transformation efficiency of 4 X 106 CFU mL-1. Besides providing rapid, efficient and economical extraction of metgenomic DNA from diverse soils, this method’s applicability is also demonstrated for cultivated organisms (Gram positive B. subtilis NRRL-B-201, Gram negative E. coli MTCC40, and a microalgae C. sorokiniana UTEX#1666). PMID:26167854

  9. Condensing economizers for thermal efficiency improvements and emissions control

    SciTech Connect

    Heaphy, J.P.; Carbonara, J.; Litzke, W.; Butcher, T.A.

    1993-12-31

    Flue gas condensing economizers improve the thermal efficiency of boilers by recovering sensible heat and water vapor latent heat from flue gas exhaust. In addition to improving thermal efficiency, condensing economizers also have the potential to act as control devices for emissions of particulates, SO{sub x}, and air toxics. Both Consolidated Edison of New York and Brookhaven National LaborAtory are currently working on condensing economizer technology with an emphasis on developing their potential for emissions control. Con Edison is currently conducting a condensing economizer demonstration at their oil-fired 74th Street Station in New York. Since installing this equipment in February of 1992 a heat rate improvement of 800 Btu/kWh has been seen. At another location, Ravenswood Station, a two stage condensing economizer has been installed in a pilot test. In this advanced configuration -the ``Integrated Flue Gas Treatment or IFGT system- two heat exchanger sections are installed and sprays of water with and without SO{sub 2} sorbents are included. Detailed studies of the removal of particulates, SO{sub 2}, SO{sub 3}, and selected air toxics have been done for a variety of operating conditions. Removal efficiencies for SO{sub 2} have been over 98% and for SO{sub 3} over 65%. Brookhaven National Laboratory`s studies involve predicting and enhancing particulate capture in condensing economizers with an emphasis on small, coal-fired applications. This work is funded by the Pittsburgh Energy Technology Center of the Department of Energy. Flyash capture efficiencies as high as 97% have been achieved to date with a single stage economizer.

  10. Increasing crop diversity mitigates weather variations and improves yield stability.

    PubMed

    Gaudin, Amélie C M; Tolhurst, Tor N; Ker, Alan P; Janovicek, Ken; Tortora, Cristina; Martin, Ralph C; Deen, William

    2015-01-01

    Cropping sequence diversification provides a systems approach to reduce yield variations and improve resilience to multiple environmental stresses. Yield advantages of more diverse crop rotations and their synergistic effects with reduced tillage are well documented, but few studies have quantified the impact of these management practices on yields and their stability when soil moisture is limiting or in excess. Using yield and weather data obtained from a 31-year long term rotation and tillage trial in Ontario, we tested whether crop rotation diversity is associated with greater yield stability when abnormal weather conditions occur. We used parametric and non-parametric approaches to quantify the impact of rotation diversity (monocrop, 2-crops, 3-crops without or with one or two legume cover crops) and tillage (conventional or reduced tillage) on yield probabilities and the benefits of crop diversity under different soil moisture and temperature scenarios. Although the magnitude of rotation benefits varied with crops, weather patterns and tillage, yield stability significantly increased when corn and soybean were integrated into more diverse rotations. Introducing small grains into short corn-soybean rotation was enough to provide substantial benefits on long-term soybean yields and their stability while the effects on corn were mostly associated with the temporal niche provided by small grains for underseeded red clover or alfalfa. Crop diversification strategies increased the probability of harnessing favorable growing conditions while decreasing the risk of crop failure. In hot and dry years, diversification of corn-soybean rotations and reduced tillage increased yield by 7% and 22% for corn and soybean respectively. Given the additional advantages associated with cropping system diversification, such a strategy provides a more comprehensive approach to lowering yield variability and improving the resilience of cropping systems to multiple environmental

  11. Increasing Crop Diversity Mitigates Weather Variations and Improves Yield Stability

    PubMed Central

    Gaudin, Amélie C. M.; Tolhurst, Tor N.; Ker, Alan P.; Janovicek, Ken; Tortora, Cristina; Martin, Ralph C.; Deen, William

    2015-01-01

    Cropping sequence diversification provides a systems approach to reduce yield variations and improve resilience to multiple environmental stresses. Yield advantages of more diverse crop rotations and their synergistic effects with reduced tillage are well documented, but few studies have quantified the impact of these management practices on yields and their stability when soil moisture is limiting or in excess. Using yield and weather data obtained from a 31-year long term rotation and tillage trial in Ontario, we tested whether crop rotation diversity is associated with greater yield stability when abnormal weather conditions occur. We used parametric and non-parametric approaches to quantify the impact of rotation diversity (monocrop, 2-crops, 3-crops without or with one or two legume cover crops) and tillage (conventional or reduced tillage) on yield probabilities and the benefits of crop diversity under different soil moisture and temperature scenarios. Although the magnitude of rotation benefits varied with crops, weather patterns and tillage, yield stability significantly increased when corn and soybean were integrated into more diverse rotations. Introducing small grains into short corn-soybean rotation was enough to provide substantial benefits on long-term soybean yields and their stability while the effects on corn were mostly associated with the temporal niche provided by small grains for underseeded red clover or alfalfa. Crop diversification strategies increased the probability of harnessing favorable growing conditions while decreasing the risk of crop failure. In hot and dry years, diversification of corn-soybean rotations and reduced tillage increased yield by 7% and 22% for corn and soybean respectively. Given the additional advantages associated with cropping system diversification, such a strategy provides a more comprehensive approach to lowering yield variability and improving the resilience of cropping systems to multiple environmental

  12. Increasing crop diversity mitigates weather variations and improves yield stability.

    PubMed

    Gaudin, Amélie C M; Tolhurst, Tor N; Ker, Alan P; Janovicek, Ken; Tortora, Cristina; Martin, Ralph C; Deen, William

    2015-01-01

    Cropping sequence diversification provides a systems approach to reduce yield variations and improve resilience to multiple environmental stresses. Yield advantages of more diverse crop rotations and their synergistic effects with reduced tillage are well documented, but few studies have quantified the impact of these management practices on yields and their stability when soil moisture is limiting or in excess. Using yield and weather data obtained from a 31-year long term rotation and tillage trial in Ontario, we tested whether crop rotation diversity is associated with greater yield stability when abnormal weather conditions occur. We used parametric and non-parametric approaches to quantify the impact of rotation diversity (monocrop, 2-crops, 3-crops without or with one or two legume cover crops) and tillage (conventional or reduced tillage) on yield probabilities and the benefits of crop diversity under different soil moisture and temperature scenarios. Although the magnitude of rotation benefits varied with crops, weather patterns and tillage, yield stability significantly increased when corn and soybean were integrated into more diverse rotations. Introducing small grains into short corn-soybean rotation was enough to provide substantial benefits on long-term soybean yields and their stability while the effects on corn were mostly associated with the temporal niche provided by small grains for underseeded red clover or alfalfa. Crop diversification strategies increased the probability of harnessing favorable growing conditions while decreasing the risk of crop failure. In hot and dry years, diversification of corn-soybean rotations and reduced tillage increased yield by 7% and 22% for corn and soybean respectively. Given the additional advantages associated with cropping system diversification, such a strategy provides a more comprehensive approach to lowering yield variability and improving the resilience of cropping systems to multiple environmental

  13. The economic valuation of improved process plant decision support technology.

    PubMed

    White, Douglas C

    2007-06-01

    How can investments that would potentially improve a manufacturing plant's decision process be economically justified? What is the value of "better information," "more flexibility," or "improved integration" and the technologies that provide these effects? Technology investments such as improved process modelling, new real time historians and other databases, "smart" instrumentation, better data analysis and visualization software, and/or improved user interfaces often include these benefits as part of their valuation. How are these "soft" benefits to be converted to a quantitative economic return? Quantification is important if rational management decisions are to be made about the correct amount of money to invest in the technologies, and which technologies to choose among the many available ones. Modelling the plant operational decision cycle-detect, analyse, forecast, choose and implement--provides a basis for this economic quantification. In this paper a new economic model is proposed for estimation of the value of decision support investments based on their effect upon the uncertainty in forecasting plant financial performance. This model leads to quantitative benefit estimates that have a realistic financial basis. An example is presented demonstrating the application of the method.

  14. A plan for application system verification tests: The value of improved meteorological information, volume 1. [economic consequences of improved meteorological information

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1976-01-01

    The framework within which the Applications Systems Verification Tests (ASVTs) are performed and the economic consequences of improved meteorological information demonstrated is described. This framework considers the impact of improved information on decision processes, the data needs to demonstrate the economic impact of the improved information, the data availability, the methodology for determining and analyzing the collected data and demonstrating the economic impact of the improved information, and the possible methods of data collection. Three ASVTs are considered and program outlines and plans are developed for performing experiments to demonstrate the economic consequences of improved meteorological information. The ASVTs are concerned with the citrus crop in Florida, the cotton crop in Mississippi and a group of diverse crops in Oregon. The program outlines and plans include schedules, manpower estimates and funding requirements.

  15. The Diverse Social and Economic Structure of Nonmetropolitan America. Rural Development Research Report No. 49.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bender, Lloyd D.; And Others

    Effective rural development planning depends on facts and analysis based, not on rural averages, but on the diverse social and economic structure of rural America. Programs tailored to particular types of rural economies may be more effective than generalized programs. Because of their unique characteristics, government policies and economic…

  16. Improving early cycle economic evaluation of diagnostic technologies.

    PubMed

    Steuten, Lotte M G; Ramsey, Scott D

    2014-08-01

    The rapidly increasing range and expense of new diagnostics, compels consideration of a different, more proactive approach to health economic evaluation of diagnostic technologies. Early cycle economic evaluation is a decision analytic approach to evaluate technologies in development so as to increase the return on investment as well as patient and societal impact. This paper describes examples of 'early cycle economic evaluations' as applied to diagnostic technologies and highlights challenges in its real-time application. It shows that especially in the field of diagnostics, with rapid technological developments and a changing regulatory climate, early cycle economic evaluation can have a guiding role to improve the efficiency of the diagnostics innovation process. In the next five years the attention will move beyond the methodological and analytic challenges of early cycle economic evaluation towards the challenge of effectively applying it to improve diagnostic research and development and patient value. Future work in this area should therefore be 'strong on principles and soft on metrics', that is, the metrics that resonate most clearly with the various decision makers in this field. PMID:24766321

  17. Why Economic Analysis of Health System Improvement Interventions Matters

    PubMed Central

    Broughton, Edward Ivor; Marquez, Lani

    2016-01-01

    There is little evidence to direct health systems toward providing efficient interventions to address medical errors, defined as an unintended act of omission or commission or one not executed as intended that may or may not cause harm to the patient but does not achieve its intended outcome. We believe that lack of guidance on what is the most efficient way to reduce medical errors and improve the quality of health-care limits the scale-up of health system improvement interventions. Challenges to economic evaluation of these interventions include defining and implementing improvement interventions in different settings with high fidelity, capturing all of the positive and negative effects of the intervention, using process measures of effectiveness rather than health outcomes, and determining the full cost of the intervention and all economic consequences of its effects. However, health system improvement interventions should be treated similarly to individual medical interventions and undergo rigorous economic evaluation to provide actionable evidence to guide policy-makers in decisions of resource allocation for improvement activities among other competing demands for health-care resources. PMID:27781204

  18. The 'Out of Africa' Hypothesis, Human Genetic Diversity, and Comparative Economic Development

    PubMed Central

    Ashraf, Quamrul; Galor, Oded

    2013-01-01

    This research argues that deep-rooted factors, determined tens of thousands of years ago, had a significant effect on the course of economic development from the dawn of human civilization to the contemporary era. It advances and empirically establishes the hypothesis that, in the course of the exodus of Homo sapiens out of Africa, variation in migratory distance from the cradle of humankind to various settlements across the globe affected genetic diversity and has had a long-lasting effect on the pattern of comparative economic development that is not captured by geographical, institutional, and cultural factors. In particular, the level of genetic diversity within a society is found to have a hump-shaped effect on development outcomes in both the pre-colonial and the modern era, reflecting the trade-off between the beneficial and the detrimental effects of diversity on productivity. While the intermediate level of genetic diversity prevalent among Asian and European populations has been conducive for development, the high degree of diversity among African populations and the low degree of diversity among Native American populations have been a detrimental force in the development of these regions. PMID:25506083

  19. Improving industrial yeast strains: exploiting natural and artificial diversity.

    PubMed

    Steensels, Jan; Snoek, Tim; Meersman, Esther; Picca Nicolino, Martina; Voordeckers, Karin; Verstrepen, Kevin J

    2014-09-01

    Yeasts have been used for thousands of years to make fermented foods and beverages, such as beer, wine, sake, and bread. However, the choice for a particular yeast strain or species for a specific industrial application is often based on historical, rather than scientific grounds. Moreover, new biotechnological yeast applications, such as the production of second-generation biofuels, confront yeast with environments and challenges that differ from those encountered in traditional food fermentations. Together, this implies that there are interesting opportunities to isolate or generate yeast variants that perform better than the currently used strains. Here, we discuss the different strategies of strain selection and improvement available for both conventional and nonconventional yeasts. Exploiting the existing natural diversity and using techniques such as mutagenesis, protoplast fusion, breeding, genome shuffling and directed evolution to generate artificial diversity, or the use of genetic modification strategies to alter traits in a more targeted way, have led to the selection of superior industrial yeasts. Furthermore, recent technological advances allowed the development of high-throughput techniques, such as 'global transcription machinery engineering' (gTME), to induce genetic variation, providing a new source of yeast genetic diversity.

  20. Improving industrial yeast strains: exploiting natural and artificial diversity.

    PubMed

    Steensels, Jan; Snoek, Tim; Meersman, Esther; Picca Nicolino, Martina; Voordeckers, Karin; Verstrepen, Kevin J

    2014-09-01

    Yeasts have been used for thousands of years to make fermented foods and beverages, such as beer, wine, sake, and bread. However, the choice for a particular yeast strain or species for a specific industrial application is often based on historical, rather than scientific grounds. Moreover, new biotechnological yeast applications, such as the production of second-generation biofuels, confront yeast with environments and challenges that differ from those encountered in traditional food fermentations. Together, this implies that there are interesting opportunities to isolate or generate yeast variants that perform better than the currently used strains. Here, we discuss the different strategies of strain selection and improvement available for both conventional and nonconventional yeasts. Exploiting the existing natural diversity and using techniques such as mutagenesis, protoplast fusion, breeding, genome shuffling and directed evolution to generate artificial diversity, or the use of genetic modification strategies to alter traits in a more targeted way, have led to the selection of superior industrial yeasts. Furthermore, recent technological advances allowed the development of high-throughput techniques, such as 'global transcription machinery engineering' (gTME), to induce genetic variation, providing a new source of yeast genetic diversity. PMID:24724938

  1. Improving industrial yeast strains: exploiting natural and artificial diversity

    PubMed Central

    Steensels, Jan; Snoek, Tim; Meersman, Esther; Nicolino, Martina Picca; Voordeckers, Karin; Verstrepen, Kevin J

    2014-01-01

    Yeasts have been used for thousands of years to make fermented foods and beverages, such as beer, wine, sake, and bread. However, the choice for a particular yeast strain or species for a specific industrial application is often based on historical, rather than scientific grounds. Moreover, new biotechnological yeast applications, such as the production of second-generation biofuels, confront yeast with environments and challenges that differ from those encountered in traditional food fermentations. Together, this implies that there are interesting opportunities to isolate or generate yeast variants that perform better than the currently used strains. Here, we discuss the different strategies of strain selection and improvement available for both conventional and nonconventional yeasts. Exploiting the existing natural diversity and using techniques such as mutagenesis, protoplast fusion, breeding, genome shuffling and directed evolution to generate artificial diversity, or the use of genetic modification strategies to alter traits in a more targeted way, have led to the selection of superior industrial yeasts. Furthermore, recent technological advances allowed the development of high-throughput techniques, such as ‘global transcription machinery engineering’ (gTME), to induce genetic variation, providing a new source of yeast genetic diversity. PMID:24724938

  2. The potential economic benefits of improvements in weather forecasting

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thompson, J. C.

    1972-01-01

    The study was initiated as a consequence of the increased use of weather satellites, electronic computers and other technological developments which have become a virtual necessity for solving the complex problems of the earth's atmosphere. Neither the economic emphasis, nor the monetary results of the study, are intended to imply their sole use as criteria for making decisions concerning the intrinsic value of technological improvements in meteorology.

  3. The science and economics of improving clinical communication.

    PubMed

    O'Byrne, William T; Weavind, Liza; Selby, John

    2008-12-01

    This article presents a complex clinical scenario based on actual communication breakdowns that led to a sentinel event. Basic communication theory that underlies clinical interactions and the tenets of health care economic evaluation are reviewed. The process of the handoff as it relates to clinical interactions is discussed and the weaknesses in communication arising from handoff failures in the operative and critical care environments are examined. The discussion follows by looking at the influences of current medical culture, emerging technology, and changing care environments and their impact on communication behaviors and resultant effect on patient outcomes. A detailed cost analysis of the charges incurred for both standard and escalated care required for the case is followed by a discussion of the economic basis for improving clinical communication and patient safety using the SBAR tool.

  4. Techniques to improve the economics of limestone FGDS

    SciTech Connect

    Bresowar, G.E.; Klingspor, J.

    1995-12-31

    Many utilities have evaluated the cost of scrubbing versus fuel switching in various plans and scenarios to determine the most economical means for meeting the requirements of the new law. Presently, the future cost of removing a ton of SO{sub 2} is based on fuel switching, and the market values are in the range of $150 - $250 per ton. The perceived cost of FGDS retrofits is $250 - $400 per ton for eastern medium to high sulfur coal. ABB has studied the overall costs of FGDS and has developed a series of cost reducing improvements. and innovations. The improvements are manifested in ABBs new limestone FGDS technology known by the code phrase {open_quote}Stealth FGDS{close_quotes}. Stealth promises low capital and operating cost, high removal efficiencies for SO{sub 2} and other pollutants, little or positive environmental and economic impact on the local community, salable or non-hazardous by-products, ease of retrofit, and exceptionally short installation schedules. The concepts are being demonstrated in one system at the Miles Generating Station of Ohio Edison Company. Bearing the name {open_quote}LS-2 Advanced SO, Scrubbing{close_quotes}, the Stealth scrubber at Niles is a 110 MWe turnkey, retrofit unit to be completed 20 months after the release of engineering. It will remove 20,000 or more tons per year of SO{sub 2} from the flue gases generated by both Unit 1 and Unit 2 boilers, producing wallboard-grade gypsum. Upon completion of a four month test program, the plant will be operated by Ohio Edison for a four to five year reliability demonstration period. The performance and economic projections for LS-2 scrubbers show the technology to be quite attractive relative to projections for fuel switching when installed in a manner similar to the installation plan for Niles. The description and basis for these economic projections are described in this paper.

  5. Improved techniques for fluid diversion in oil recovery. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Seright, R.

    1996-01-01

    This three-year project had two technical objectives. The first objective was to compare the effectiveness of gels in fluid diversion (water shutoff) with those of other types of processes. Several different types of fluid-diversion processes were compared, including those using gels, foams, emulsions, particulates, and microorganisms. The ultimate goals of these comparisons were to (1) establish which of these processes are most effective in a given application and (2) determine whether aspects of one process can be combined with those of other processes to improve performance. Analyses and experiments were performed to verify which materials are the most effective in entering and blocking high-permeability zones. The second objective of the project was to identify the mechanisms by which materials (particularly gels) selectively reduce permeability to water more than to oil. A capacity to reduce water permeability much more than oil or gas permeability is critical to the success of gel treatments in production wells if zones cannot be isolated during gel placement. Topics covered in this report include (1) determination of gel properties in fractures, (2) investigation of schemes to optimize gel placement in fractured systems, (3) an investigation of why some polymers and gels can reduce water permeability more than oil permeability, (4) consideration of whether microorganisms and particulates can exhibit placement properties that are superior to those of gels, and (5) examination of when foams may show placement properties that are superior to those of gels.

  6. Diversity combining in laser Doppler vibrometry for improved signal reliability

    SciTech Connect

    Dräbenstedt, Alexander

    2014-05-27

    Because of the speckle nature of the light reflected from rough surfaces the signal quality of a vibrometer suffers from varying signal power. Deep signal outages manifest themselves as noise bursts and spikes in the demodulated velocity signal. Here we show that the signal quality of a single point vibrometer can be substantially improved by diversity reception. This concept is widely used in RF communication and can be transferred into optical interferometry. When two statistically independent measurement channels are available which measure the same motion on the same spot, the probability for both channels to see a signal drop-out at the same time is very low. We built a prototype instrument that uses polarization diversity to constitute two independent reception channels that are separately demodulated into velocity signals. Send and receive beams go through different parts of the aperture so that the beams can be spatially separated. The two velocity channels are mixed into one more reliable signal by a PC program in real time with the help of the signal power information. An algorithm has been developed that ensures a mixing of two or more channels with minimum resulting variance. The combination algorithm delivers also an equivalent signal power for the combined signal. The combined signal lacks the vast majority of spikes that are present in the raw signals and it extracts the true vibration information present in both channels. A statistical analysis shows that the probability for deep signal outages is largely decreased. A 60 fold improvement can be shown. The reduction of spikes and noise bursts reduces the noise in the spectral analysis of vibrations too. Over certain frequency bands a reduction of the noise density by a factor above 10 can be shown.

  7. Diversity combining in laser Doppler vibrometry for improved signal reliability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dräbenstedt, Alexander

    2014-05-01

    Because of the speckle nature of the light reflected from rough surfaces the signal quality of a vibrometer suffers from varying signal power. Deep signal outages manifest themselves as noise bursts and spikes in the demodulated velocity signal. Here we show that the signal quality of a single point vibrometer can be substantially improved by diversity reception. This concept is widely used in RF communication and can be transferred into optical interferometry. When two statistically independent measurement channels are available which measure the same motion on the same spot, the probability for both channels to see a signal drop-out at the same time is very low. We built a prototype instrument that uses polarization diversity to constitute two independent reception channels that are separately demodulated into velocity signals. Send and receive beams go through different parts of the aperture so that the beams can be spatially separated. The two velocity channels are mixed into one more reliable signal by a PC program in real time with the help of the signal power information. An algorithm has been developed that ensures a mixing of two or more channels with minimum resulting variance. The combination algorithm delivers also an equivalent signal power for the combined signal. The combined signal lacks the vast majority of spikes that are present in the raw signals and it extracts the true vibration information present in both channels. A statistical analysis shows that the probability for deep signal outages is largely decreased. A 60 fold improvement can be shown. The reduction of spikes and noise bursts reduces the noise in the spectral analysis of vibrations too. Over certain frequency bands a reduction of the noise density by a factor above 10 can be shown.

  8. Economic valuation of plant diversity storage service provided by Brazilian rupestrian grassland ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Resende, F M; Fernandes, G W; Coelho, M S

    2013-11-01

    The rupestrian grassland ecosystems provide various goods and services to society and support a significant amount of biological diversity. Notably the rich plant diversity has high levels of endemism and a variety of uses among the local communities and general society. Despite the socio-ecological importance of these ecosystems, they are subjected to significant anthropogenic pressures. The goal of this study is to perform economic valuation of the plant diversity storage service provided by rupestrian grassland ecosystems to provide grounds for the development of conservation policies and encourage sustainable practices in these ecosystems. Given the intense human disturbances and unique flora, the Serra do Cipó (southern portion of the Espinhaço Range in southeast Brazil) was selected for the study. We estimate the monetary value related to the plant diversity storage service provided by the study area using the maintenance costs of native plants in the living collections of the botanical garden managed by the Zoobotanical Foundation - Belo Horizonte (located 97 km from Serra do Cipó). The plant diversity storage value provided by Serra do Cipó ecosystems is significant, reaching US$25.26 million year-1. This study contributes to the development of perspectives related to the conservation of rupestrian grassland ecosystems as well as others threatened tropical ecosystems with high biodiversity.

  9. New bits, motors improve economics of slim hole horizontal wells

    SciTech Connect

    McDonald, S.; Felderhoff, F.; Fisher, K.

    1996-03-11

    The latest generation of small-diameter bits, combined with a new extended power section positive displacement motor (PDM), has improved the economics of slim hole drilling programs. As costs are driven down, redevelopment reserves are generated in the older, more established fields. New reserves result from increases in the ultimate recovery and accelerated production rates from the implementation of horizontal wells in reentry programs. This logic stimulated an entire development program for a Gulf of Mexico platform, which was performed without significant compromises in well bore geometry. The savings from this new-generation drilling system come from reducing the total number of trips required during the drilling phase. This paper reviews the design improvements of roller cone bits, PDC bits, and positive displacement motors for offshore directional drilling operations.

  10. Commercial Plant Production and Consumption Still Follow the Latitudinal Gradient in Species Diversity despite Economic Globalization

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Erik J.; Helmus, Matthew R.; Cavender-Bares, Jeannine; Polasky, Stephen; Lasky, Jesse R.; Zanne, Amy E.; Pearse, William D.; Kraft, Nathan J. B.; Miteva, Daniela A.; Fagan, William F.

    2016-01-01

    Increasing trade between countries and gains in income have given consumers around the world access to a richer and more diverse set of commercial plant products (i.e., foods and fibers produced by farmers). According to the economic theory of comparative advantage, countries open to trade will be able to consume more–in terms of volume and diversity–if they concentrate production on commodities that they can most cost-effectively produce, while importing goods that are expensive to produce, relative to other countries. Here, we perform a global analysis of traded commercial plant products and find little evidence that increasing globalization has incentivized agricultural specialization. Instead, a country’s plant production and consumption patterns are still largely determined by local evolutionary legacies of plant diversification. Because tropical countries harbor a greater diversity of lineages across the tree of life than temperate countries, tropical countries produce and consume a greater diversity of plant products than do temperate countries. In contrast, the richer and more economically advanced temperate countries have the capacity to produce and consume more plant species than the generally poorer tropical countries, yet this collection of plant species is drawn from fewer branches on the tree of life. Why have countries not increasingly specialized in plant production despite the theoretical financial incentive to do so? Potential explanations include the persistence of domestic agricultural subsidies that distort production decisions, cultural preferences for diverse local food production, and that diverse food production protects rural households in developing countries from food price shocks. Less specialized production patterns will make crop systems more resilient to zonal climatic and social perturbations, but this may come at the expense of global crop production efficiency, an important step in making the transition to a hotter and more

  11. Oil palm natural diversity and the potential for yield improvement.

    PubMed

    Barcelos, Edson; Rios, Sara de Almeida; Cunha, Raimundo N V; Lopes, Ricardo; Motoike, Sérgio Y; Babiychuk, Elena; Skirycz, Aleksandra; Kushnir, Sergei

    2015-01-01

    African oil palm has the highest productivity amongst cultivated oleaginous crops. Species can constitute a single crop capable to fulfill the growing global demand for vegetable oils, which is estimated to reach 240 million tons by 2050. Two types of vegetable oil are extracted from the palm fruit on commercial scale. The crude palm oil and kernel palm oil have different fatty acid profiles, which increases versatility of the crop in industrial applications. Plantations of the current varieties have economic life-span around 25-30 years and produce fruits around the year. Thus, predictable annual palm oil supply enables marketing plans and adjustments in line with the economic forecasts. Oil palm cultivation is one of the most profitable land uses in the humid tropics. Oil palm fruits are the richest plant source of pro-vitamin A and vitamin E. Hence, crop both alleviates poverty, and could provide a simple practical solution to eliminate global pro-vitamin A deficiency. Oil palm is a perennial, evergreen tree adapted to cultivation in biodiversity rich equatorial land areas. The growing demand for the palm oil threatens the future of the rain forests and has a large negative impact on biodiversity. Plant science faces three major challenges to make oil palm the key element of building the future sustainable world. The global average yield of 3.5 tons of oil per hectare (t) should be raised to the full yield potential estimated at 11-18t. The tree architecture must be changed to lower labor intensity and improve mechanization of the harvest. Oil composition should be tailored to the evolving needs of the food, oleochemical and fuel industries. The release of the oil palm reference genome sequence in 2013 was the key step toward this goal. The molecular bases of agronomically important traits can be and are beginning to be understood at the single base pair resolution, enabling gene-centered breeding and engineering of this remarkable crop. PMID:25870604

  12. Oil palm natural diversity and the potential for yield improvement.

    PubMed

    Barcelos, Edson; Rios, Sara de Almeida; Cunha, Raimundo N V; Lopes, Ricardo; Motoike, Sérgio Y; Babiychuk, Elena; Skirycz, Aleksandra; Kushnir, Sergei

    2015-01-01

    African oil palm has the highest productivity amongst cultivated oleaginous crops. Species can constitute a single crop capable to fulfill the growing global demand for vegetable oils, which is estimated to reach 240 million tons by 2050. Two types of vegetable oil are extracted from the palm fruit on commercial scale. The crude palm oil and kernel palm oil have different fatty acid profiles, which increases versatility of the crop in industrial applications. Plantations of the current varieties have economic life-span around 25-30 years and produce fruits around the year. Thus, predictable annual palm oil supply enables marketing plans and adjustments in line with the economic forecasts. Oil palm cultivation is one of the most profitable land uses in the humid tropics. Oil palm fruits are the richest plant source of pro-vitamin A and vitamin E. Hence, crop both alleviates poverty, and could provide a simple practical solution to eliminate global pro-vitamin A deficiency. Oil palm is a perennial, evergreen tree adapted to cultivation in biodiversity rich equatorial land areas. The growing demand for the palm oil threatens the future of the rain forests and has a large negative impact on biodiversity. Plant science faces three major challenges to make oil palm the key element of building the future sustainable world. The global average yield of 3.5 tons of oil per hectare (t) should be raised to the full yield potential estimated at 11-18t. The tree architecture must be changed to lower labor intensity and improve mechanization of the harvest. Oil composition should be tailored to the evolving needs of the food, oleochemical and fuel industries. The release of the oil palm reference genome sequence in 2013 was the key step toward this goal. The molecular bases of agronomically important traits can be and are beginning to be understood at the single base pair resolution, enabling gene-centered breeding and engineering of this remarkable crop.

  13. Oil palm natural diversity and the potential for yield improvement

    PubMed Central

    Barcelos, Edson; Rios, Sara de Almeida; Cunha, Raimundo N. V.; Lopes, Ricardo; Motoike, Sérgio Y.; Babiychuk, Elena; Skirycz, Aleksandra; Kushnir, Sergei

    2015-01-01

    African oil palm has the highest productivity amongst cultivated oleaginous crops. Species can constitute a single crop capable to fulfill the growing global demand for vegetable oils, which is estimated to reach 240 million tons by 2050. Two types of vegetable oil are extracted from the palm fruit on commercial scale. The crude palm oil and kernel palm oil have different fatty acid profiles, which increases versatility of the crop in industrial applications. Plantations of the current varieties have economic life-span around 25–30 years and produce fruits around the year. Thus, predictable annual palm oil supply enables marketing plans and adjustments in line with the economic forecasts. Oil palm cultivation is one of the most profitable land uses in the humid tropics. Oil palm fruits are the richest plant source of pro-vitamin A and vitamin E. Hence, crop both alleviates poverty, and could provide a simple practical solution to eliminate global pro-vitamin A deficiency. Oil palm is a perennial, evergreen tree adapted to cultivation in biodiversity rich equatorial land areas. The growing demand for the palm oil threatens the future of the rain forests and has a large negative impact on biodiversity. Plant science faces three major challenges to make oil palm the key element of building the future sustainable world. The global average yield of 3.5 tons of oil per hectare (t) should be raised to the full yield potential estimated at 11–18t. The tree architecture must be changed to lower labor intensity and improve mechanization of the harvest. Oil composition should be tailored to the evolving needs of the food, oleochemical and fuel industries. The release of the oil palm reference genome sequence in 2013 was the key step toward this goal. The molecular bases of agronomically important traits can be and are beginning to be understood at the single base pair resolution, enabling gene-centered breeding and engineering of this remarkable crop. PMID:25870604

  14. Applying Diversity Management Concepts to Improve the Minority Educational Pipeline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oguntebi, Joy; Shcherbakova, Maria; Wooten, Lynn P.

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this conceptual article is to investigate existing diversity management paradigms and extend their implications toward the goal of increasing minority representation in management education. We suggest that the existing learning-and-effectiveness diversity management paradigm (Thomas & Ely, 1996, "Harvard Business…

  15. Developing Diverse Teams to Improve Performance in the Organizational Setting

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yeager, Katherine L.; Nafukho, Fredrick M.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The use of teams in organizations given the current trend toward globalization, population changes, and an aging workforce, especially in high-income countries, makes the issue of diverse team building critical. The purpose of this paper is to explore the issue of team diversity and team performance through the examination of theory and…

  16. Performance improvement of OFDM-FSO multi-user communication system with combined transmit frequency diversity and receive space diversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Pravindra; Srivastava, Anand

    2016-05-01

    Orthogonal frequency division multiplexed (OFDM) based free space optical (FSO) communication link gives improved performance because of narrow-band interference, improved robustness against fading and high bandwidth efficiency. It is further improved using transmit frequency diversity and space diversity at the receiver. In this paper, we propose to use OFDM architecture combined with spreading code in electrical domain, referred as code division multiplexed-orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (CDM-OFDM) which provides frequency diversity at the transmitter and using more than one receiver to get receive diversity. Analytical model of CDM-OFDM-FSO communication system with photo-detector space diversity using maximal ratio combining (MRC) is analyzed in the presence of turbulent atmosphere, multi-user-interference (MUI) and timing jitter. The error performance is computed in terms of receiver sensitivity and bit-error-rate (BER). In the analysis, Gamma-Gamma distribution is considered for atmospheric turbulence. The performance of OFDM-FSO link and CDM-OFDM-FSO link is compared. It is seen that for multiple users, CDM-OFDM-FSO link with transmit and receive diversity gives improved performance as compared to OFDM-FSO link.

  17. Integrating diverse calibration products to improve seismic location

    SciTech Connect

    Schultz, C; Myers, S; Swenson, J; Flanagan, M; Pasyanos, M; Bhattacharyya, J; Dodge, D

    2000-07-17

    The monitoring of nuclear explosions on a global basis requires accurate event locations. As an example, under the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, the size of an on-site inspection search area is 1,000 square kilometers or approximately 17 km accuracy assuming a circular area. This level of accuracy is a significant challenge for small events that are recorded using a sparse regional network. In such cases, the travel-time of seismic energy is strongly affected by crustal and upper mantle heterogeneity and large biases can result. This can lead to large systematic errors in location and, more importantly, to invalid error bounds associated with location estimates. Corrections can be developed and integrated to correct for these biases. These path corrections take the form of both three-dimensional model corrections along with three-dimensional empirically based travel time corrections. LLNL is currently working to integrate a diverse set of three-dimensional velocity model and empirical based travel-time products into one consistent and validated calibration set. To perform this task, we have developed a hybrid approach that uses three-dimensional model corrections for a region and then uses reference events when available to improve the path correction. This Bayesian kriging approach uses the best apriori three-dimensional velocity model that is produced for a local region and uses this as a baseline correction. When multiple models are produced for a local region, uncertainties in the models are compared against each other using ground truth data and an optimal model is chosen. We .are in the process of combining three-dimensional models on a region-by-region basis and integrating the uncertainties to form a global correction set. The Bayesian kriging prediction combines this a priori model and its statistics with the empirical calibrations to give an optimal aposteriori calibration estimate. In regions where there is limited or no coverage by reference events the

  18. Improved models for increasing wind penetration, economics and operating reliability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlueter, R. A.; Park, G. L.; Sigari, G.; Costi, T.

    1984-04-01

    The need for wind power prediction in order to enable larger wind power penetrations and improve the economics and reliability of power system operation is discussed. Methods for estimating turbulence and prediction of diurnal wind power prediction are reviewed. A method is presented to predict meteorological event induced wind power variation from measurements of wind speed at reference meteorological towers that encircle all wind turbine clusters and from sites within the wind turbine clusters. The methodology uses a recursive least squares model and requires: (1) detection of even propagation direction; and (2) determination of delays between groups of measurements at reference meteorological towers and those measurements at towers in the array. Proper filtering of the data and methods for switching reference sites and delays for the transition from one frontal system to another are also discussed. The performance of the prediction methodology on data sets from both sites was quite good and indicates one or more hour ahead prediction of wind power for meteorological events is feasible.

  19. Advanced Placement Economics Improves Both Merit and Equity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meek, Sally; Morton, John

    2009-01-01

    In 1989, microeconomics and macroeconomics examinations debuted on the Advanced Placement (AP) scene. At that time, many professors of economics were skeptical that college freshmen had the skills and maturity to understand the concepts in principles of economics courses. They thought teaching these concepts to high school students was even more…

  20. Does Child Labor Decline with Improving Economic Status?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edmonds, Eric V.

    2005-01-01

    The rapid economic growth of Vietnam provides an interesting insight into the sharp decline in child labor. A study of the rising economic status of the population across Vietnam shows that children returned to school or stopped working as their family incomes grew. The decline in child labor is steep in poor households as they emerged from…

  1. Teacher Resistance to Improvement of Schools with Diverse Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McKenzie, Kathryn Bell; Scheurich, James Joseph

    2008-01-01

    Two university researchers who have considerable practitioner and research experience in urban schools conducted an interventionist action research project in collaboration with the professional staff of a diverse urban elementary school. The goal was to collaborate with the administration, faculty and staff in an average urban elementary school…

  2. Preparing Students for a Diverse Workplace: Strategies to Improve Dispositions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Melton, Deana; Dail, Teresa

    2010-01-01

    The curriculum for kinesiology students typically includes foundation courses focused on the scientific principles underlying human movement. Modifications for gender, age, and physical ability are also commonly included in these courses. Rarely addressed, however, are students' dispositions toward diverse groups. This article examines several…

  3. A flexible and economical barcoding approach for highly multiplexed amplicon sequencing of diverse target genes.

    PubMed

    Herbold, Craig W; Pelikan, Claus; Kuzyk, Orest; Hausmann, Bela; Angel, Roey; Berry, David; Loy, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    High throughput sequencing of phylogenetic and functional gene amplicons provides tremendous insight into the structure and functional potential of complex microbial communities. Here, we introduce a highly adaptable and economical PCR approach to barcoding and pooling libraries of numerous target genes. In this approach, we replace gene- and sequencing platform-specific fusion primers with general, interchangeable barcoding primers, enabling nearly limitless customized barcode-primer combinations. Compared to barcoding with long fusion primers, our multiple-target gene approach is more economical because it overall requires lower number of primers and is based on short primers with generally lower synthesis and purification costs. To highlight our approach, we pooled over 900 different small-subunit rRNA and functional gene amplicon libraries obtained from various environmental or host-associated microbial community samples into a single, paired-end Illumina MiSeq run. Although the amplicon regions ranged in size from approximately 290 to 720 bp, we found no significant systematic sequencing bias related to amplicon length or gene target. Our results indicate that this flexible multiplexing approach produces large, diverse, and high quality sets of amplicon sequence data for modern studies in microbial ecology. PMID:26236305

  4. Socio-economic comparison between traditional and improved cultivation methods in agroforestry systems, East Usambara Mountains, Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Reyes, Teija; Quiroz, Roberto; Msikula, Shija

    2005-11-01

    The East Usambara Mountains, recognized as one of the 25 most important biodiversity hot spots in the world, have a high degree of species diversity and endemism that is threatened by increasing human pressure on resources. Traditional slash and burn cultivation in the area is no longer sustainable. However, it is possible to maintain land productivity, decrease land degradation, and improve rural people's livelihood by ameliorating cultivation methods. Improved agroforestry seems to be a very convincing and suitable method for buffer zones of conservation areas. Farmers could receive a reasonable net income from their farm with little investment in terms of time, capital, and labor. By increasing the diversity and production of already existing cultivations, the pressure on natural forests can be diminished. The present study shows a significant gap between traditional cultivation methods and improved agroforestry systems in socio-economic terms. Improved agroforestry systems provide approximately double income per capita in comparison to traditional methods. More intensified cash crop cultivation in the highlands of the East Usambara also results in double income compared to that in the lowlands. However, people are sensitive to risks of changing farming practices. Encouraging farmers to apply better land management and practice sustainable cultivation of cash crops in combination with multipurpose trees would be relevant in improving their economic situation in the relatively short term. The markets of most cash crops are already available. Improved agroforestry methods could ameliorate the living conditions of the local population and protect the natural reserves from human disturbance.

  5. Socio-economic comparison between traditional and improved cultivation methods in agroforestry systems, East Usambara Mountains, Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Reyes, Teija; Quiroz, Roberto; Msikula, Shija

    2005-11-01

    The East Usambara Mountains, recognized as one of the 25 most important biodiversity hot spots in the world, have a high degree of species diversity and endemism that is threatened by increasing human pressure on resources. Traditional slash and burn cultivation in the area is no longer sustainable. However, it is possible to maintain land productivity, decrease land degradation, and improve rural people's livelihood by ameliorating cultivation methods. Improved agroforestry seems to be a very convincing and suitable method for buffer zones of conservation areas. Farmers could receive a reasonable net income from their farm with little investment in terms of time, capital, and labor. By increasing the diversity and production of already existing cultivations, the pressure on natural forests can be diminished. The present study shows a significant gap between traditional cultivation methods and improved agroforestry systems in socio-economic terms. Improved agroforestry systems provide approximately double income per capita in comparison to traditional methods. More intensified cash crop cultivation in the highlands of the East Usambara also results in double income compared to that in the lowlands. However, people are sensitive to risks of changing farming practices. Encouraging farmers to apply better land management and practice sustainable cultivation of cash crops in combination with multipurpose trees would be relevant in improving their economic situation in the relatively short term. The markets of most cash crops are already available. Improved agroforestry methods could ameliorate the living conditions of the local population and protect the natural reserves from human disturbance. PMID:16261277

  6. Strategies for Improving Diversity at Bell Labs, Lucent Technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murray, Cherry A.

    2001-03-01

    Over the last quarter century, top management in Bell Labs Research has initiated efforts to train, recruit, and encourage underrepresented minorities into science and engineering positions, and in hiring and retaining underrepresented minority scientists and engineers. I will give some historical background of some of the programs which have worked over the years and some of the new programs in recruiting, mentoring and career planning that we have recently initiated in order to better create a workplace that is accepting and even welcoming of diversity.

  7. Growth Versus Government Management Improvement During Economic Downturn

    PubMed Central

    Podobnik, Boris; Baaquie, Belal E.; Bishop, Steven; Njavro, Djuro; Li, Baowen

    2013-01-01

    In estimating how economic growth depends on various inputs, economists commonly use long periods of data encompassing both main extremes to fluctuations in the economy: recession and expansion. Here we focus on recession years because during expansion even countries with bad economic policies may experience large growth. Specifically, we study how growth depends on the proportion of public-sector workforce, p and competitiveness, quantified by the Global Competitiveness Index, GCI. For the 2008–2011 economic downturn and for 57 countries, we find that the growth rate of GDP per capita, g, decreases with p, and increases with ΔGCI. Further, more competitive countries attract more foreign direct investments per capita, I, than less competitive countries, where I ∝ GCIα. We propose a production function, divided into the private and public sectors, where GDP depends on market capitalization, the public (private)-sector workforce, and competitiveness level, used to quantify the public sector efficiency. PMID:23563321

  8. Economic development does not improve public mental health spending.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Susham; Methuen, Caroline; Kent, Priscilla; Chatain, Gregoire; Christie, Daisy; Torales, Julio; Ventriglio, Antonio

    2016-08-01

    As a result of rapid globalization the Gross Domestic product of countries may have changed, but the gap between the very rich countries and poor countries has changed too, along with a change in social and economic strata within each society; although the rates of psychiatric disorders are affected by industrialization and urbanization, the financial pressures add yet another layer of burden. Global burden of disease due to mental illness is tremendously high and yet, in spite of pressures, there is no equity and increased discrimination related to mental illness. This paper presents some of the issues related to the economic state of the countries. In order to ensure that citizens receive the best treatments available it is important that socio-economic causes and gaps in treatment are identified and dealt with at national levels. PMID:27686159

  9. Towards improved socio-economic assessments of ocean acidification's impacts.

    PubMed

    Hilmi, Nathalie; Allemand, Denis; Dupont, Sam; Safa, Alain; Haraldsson, Gunnar; Nunes, Paulo A L D; Moore, Chris; Hattam, Caroline; Reynaud, Stéphanie; Hall-Spencer, Jason M; Fine, Maoz; Turley, Carol; Jeffree, Ross; Orr, James; Munday, Philip L; Cooley, Sarah R

    2013-01-01

    Ocean acidification is increasingly recognized as a component of global change that could have a wide range of impacts on marine organisms, the ecosystems they live in, and the goods and services they provide humankind. Assessment of these potential socio-economic impacts requires integrated efforts between biologists, chemists, oceanographers, economists and social scientists. But because ocean acidification is a new research area, significant knowledge gaps are preventing economists from estimating its welfare impacts. For instance, economic data on the impact of ocean acidification on significant markets such as fisheries, aquaculture and tourism are very limited (if not non-existent), and non-market valuation studies on this topic are not yet available. Our paper summarizes the current understanding of future OA impacts and sets out what further information is required for economists to assess socio-economic impacts of ocean acidification. Our aim is to provide clear directions for multidisciplinary collaborative research. PMID:24391285

  10. Improving Software Development Process through Economic Mechanism Design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yilmaz, Murat; O'Connor, Rory V.; Collins, John

    We introduce the novel concept of applying economic mechanism design to software development process, and aim to find ways to adjust the incentives and disincentives of the software organization to align them with the motivations of the participants in order to maximize the delivered value of a software project. We envision a set of principles to design processes that allow people to be self motivated but constantly working toward project goals. The resulting economic mechanism will rely on game theoretic principles (i.e. Stackelberg games) for leveraging the incentives, goals and motivation of the participants in the service of project and organizational goals.

  11. Genetic diversity for wheat improvement as a conduit to food security

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic diversity is paramount for any crops genetic improvement and this resides in three gene pools of the Triticeae for wheat. Access to the diversity and its exploitation is based upon genetic distance of the species relatives from the wheat genomes. Apart from the conventional genetic base fo...

  12. Improving science inquiry with elementary students of diverse backgrounds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cuevas, Peggy; Lee, Okhee; Hart, Juliet; Deaktor, Rachael

    2005-03-01

    This study examined the impact of an inquiry-based instructional intervention on (a) children's ability to conduct science inquiry overall and to use specific skills in inquiry, and (b) narrowing the gaps in children's ability among demographic subgroups of students. The intervention consisted of instructional units, teacher workshops, and classroom practices. The study involved 25 third- and fourth-grade students from six elementary schools representing diverse linguistic and cultural groups. Quantitative results demonstrated that the intervention enhanced the inquiry ability of all students regardless of grade, achievement, gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status (SES), home language, and English proficiency. Particularly, low-achieving, low-SES, and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) exited students made impressive gains. The study adds to the existing literature on designing learning environments that foster science inquiry of all elementary students.

  13. Possible Improvements of the ACE Diversity Interchange Methodology

    SciTech Connect

    Etingov, Pavel V.; Zhou, Ning; Makarov, Yuri V.; Ma, Jian; Guttromson, Ross T.; McManus, Bart; Loutan, Clyde

    2010-07-26

    North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) grid is operated by about 131 balancing authorities (BA). Within each BA, operators are responsible for managing the unbalance (caused by both load and wind). As wind penetration levels increase, the challenges of managing power variation increases. Working independently, balancing area with limited regulating/load following generation and high wind power penetration faces significant challenges. The benefits of BA cooperation and consolidation increase when there is a significant wind energy penetration. To explore the benefits of BA cooperation, this paper investigates ACE sharing approach. A technology called ACE diversity interchange (ADI) is already in use in the western interconnection. A new methodology extending ADI is proposed in the paper. The proposed advanced ADI overcoming some limitations existing in conventional ADI. Simulations using real statistical data of CAISO and BPA have shown high performance of the proposed advanced ADI methodology.

  14. Pump-off controllers improve sucker rod lift economics

    SciTech Connect

    Amezcua, J.D.

    1982-02-01

    A controversal issue in the production of reservoir fluids is the application, field acceptance and reliability of automatic pump-off control (POC) devices on rod pumped wells. Three distinct types of pump-off controllers were selected for an extensive evaluation and results indicate that they offer an economical means of operating pumping wells and that field acceptance is attainable.

  15. Fuel economizer employing improved turbulent mixing of fuel and air

    SciTech Connect

    Howes, L.D.

    1980-11-25

    A fuel economizer is described for internal combustion engines which increases turbulence of the fuel and air mixture in the carburetor by decreasing the throat of its venturi to a predetermined minimum necessary to induce fuel flow through its fuel jets and then downstream of the venturi adding further atmospheric air for complete combustion.

  16. ON IMPROVING THE ECONOMIC STATUS OF THE NEGRO.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    TOBIN, JAMES

    EFFORTS TO ELIMINATE NEGRO POVERTY MUST BE UNDERTAKEN WITHIN A FAVORABLE OVERALL ECONOMIC CLIMATE, AND THE CURRENT CLIMATE IS NOT FAVORABLE BECAUSE MANPOWER AND PLANT CAPACITY ARE NOT FULLY UTILIZED. SUCH FACTORS AS LIMITED JOBS, EXAGGERATED JOB REQUIREMENTS, LOWER EARNING CAPACITY, DURATION OF UNEMPLOYMENT, FLUCTUATIONS OF THE BUSINESS CYCLE, AND…

  17. An improved criterion for new particle formation in diverse environments

    SciTech Connect

    Kuang, C.; Riipinen, I.; Sihto, S.-L.; Kulmala, M.; McCormick, A.; McMurry, P.

    2010-03-15

    A dimensionless theory for new particle formation (NPF) was developed, using an aerosol population balance model incorporating recent developments in nucleation rates and measured particle growth rates. Based on this theoretical analysis, it was shown that a dimensionless parameter Lg, characterizing the ratio of the particle scavenging loss rate to the particle growth rate, exclusively determined whether or not NPF would occur on a particular day. This parameter determines the probability that a nucleated particle will grow to a detectable size before being lost by coagulation with the pre-existing aerosol. Cluster-cluster coagulation was shown to contribute negligibly to this survival probability under conditions pertinent to the atmosphere. Data acquired during intensive measurement campaigns in Tecamac (MILAGRO), Atlanta (ANARChE), Boulder, and Hyytiala (QUEST II, QUEST IV, and EUCAARI) were used to test the validity of Lg as an NPF criterion. Measurements included aerosol size distributions down to 3 nm and gas-phase sulfuric acid concentrations. The model was applied to 77 NPF events and 19 non-events (characterized by growth of pre-existing aerosol without NPF) measured in diverse environments with broad ranges in sulfuric acid concentrations, ultrafine number concentrations, aerosol surface areas, and particle growth rates (nearly two orders of magnitude). Across this diverse data set, a nominal value of Lg = 0.7 was found to determine the boundary for the occurrence of NPF, with NPF occurring when Lg < 0.7 and being suppressed when Lg > 0.7. Moreover, nearly 45% of measured Lg values associated with NPF fell in the relatively narrow range of 0.1 < Lg < 0.3.

  18. Controlling parental feeding practices and child body composition in ethnically and economically diverse preschool children.

    PubMed

    Wehrly, Sarah E; Bonilla, Chantal; Perez, Marisol; Liew, Jeffrey

    2014-02-01

    Controlling parental feeding practices may be associated with childhood overweight, because coercive or intrusive feeding practices may negatively impact children's development of self-regulation of eating. This study examined pressuring or forcing a child (healthy or unhealthy foods) and restricting child from unhealthy or snack foods as two types of controlling feeding practices that explain unique variances in measures of child body composition (BMI, percent body fat, and parental perception of child weight). In an ethnically and economically diverse sample of 243 children aged 4-6years old and their biological parents (89% biological mothers, 8% biological fathers, and 3% step or grand-parent), descriptive statistics indicate ethnic and family income differences in measures of feeding practices and child body composition. Additionally, the two "objective" indices of body composition (BMI and percent body fat) were related to low pressure to eat, whereas the "subjective" index (perceived child weight) was related to restriction. Regression analyses accounting for ethnic and family income influences indicate that pressure to eat and restriction both explained unique variances in the two "objective" indices of body composition, whereas only restriction explained variance in perceived child weight. Findings have implications for helping parents learn about feeding practices that promote children's self-regulation of eating that simultaneously serves as an obesity prevention strategy. PMID:24269508

  19. Scope for improved eco-efficiency varies among diverse cropping systems.

    PubMed

    Carberry, Peter S; Liang, Wei-li; Twomlow, Stephen; Holzworth, Dean P; Dimes, John P; McClelland, Tim; Huth, Neil I; Chen, Fu; Hochman, Zvi; Keating, Brian A

    2013-05-21

    Global food security requires eco-efficient agriculture to produce the required food and fiber products concomitant with ecologically efficient use of resources. This eco-efficiency concept is used to diagnose the state of agricultural production in China (irrigated wheat-maize double-cropping systems), Zimbabwe (rainfed maize systems), and Australia (rainfed wheat systems). More than 3,000 surveyed crop yields in these three countries were compared against simulated grain yields at farmer-specified levels of nitrogen (N) input. Many Australian commercial wheat farmers are both close to existing production frontiers and gain little prospective return from increasing their N input. Significant losses of N from their systems, either as nitrous oxide emissions or as nitrate leached from the soil profile, are infrequent and at low intensities relative to their level of grain production. These Australian farmers operate close to eco-efficient frontiers in regard to N, and so innovations in technologies and practices are essential to increasing their production without added economic or environmental risks. In contrast, many Chinese farmers can reduce N input without sacrificing production through more efficient use of their fertilizer input. In fact, there are real prospects for the double-cropping systems on the North China Plain to achieve both production increases and reduced environmental risks. Zimbabwean farmers have the opportunity for significant production increases by both improving their technical efficiency and increasing their level of input; however, doing so will require improved management expertise and greater access to institutional support for addressing the higher risks. This paper shows that pathways for achieving improved eco-efficiency will differ among diverse cropping systems.

  20. Scope for improved eco-efficiency varies among diverse cropping systems.

    PubMed

    Carberry, Peter S; Liang, Wei-li; Twomlow, Stephen; Holzworth, Dean P; Dimes, John P; McClelland, Tim; Huth, Neil I; Chen, Fu; Hochman, Zvi; Keating, Brian A

    2013-05-21

    Global food security requires eco-efficient agriculture to produce the required food and fiber products concomitant with ecologically efficient use of resources. This eco-efficiency concept is used to diagnose the state of agricultural production in China (irrigated wheat-maize double-cropping systems), Zimbabwe (rainfed maize systems), and Australia (rainfed wheat systems). More than 3,000 surveyed crop yields in these three countries were compared against simulated grain yields at farmer-specified levels of nitrogen (N) input. Many Australian commercial wheat farmers are both close to existing production frontiers and gain little prospective return from increasing their N input. Significant losses of N from their systems, either as nitrous oxide emissions or as nitrate leached from the soil profile, are infrequent and at low intensities relative to their level of grain production. These Australian farmers operate close to eco-efficient frontiers in regard to N, and so innovations in technologies and practices are essential to increasing their production without added economic or environmental risks. In contrast, many Chinese farmers can reduce N input without sacrificing production through more efficient use of their fertilizer input. In fact, there are real prospects for the double-cropping systems on the North China Plain to achieve both production increases and reduced environmental risks. Zimbabwean farmers have the opportunity for significant production increases by both improving their technical efficiency and increasing their level of input; however, doing so will require improved management expertise and greater access to institutional support for addressing the higher risks. This paper shows that pathways for achieving improved eco-efficiency will differ among diverse cropping systems. PMID:23671071

  1. Scope for improved eco-efficiency varies among diverse cropping systems

    PubMed Central

    Carberry, Peter S.; Liang, Wei-li; Twomlow, Stephen; Holzworth, Dean P.; Dimes, John P.; McClelland, Tim; Huth, Neil I.; Chen, Fu; Hochman, Zvi; Keating, Brian A.

    2013-01-01

    Global food security requires eco-efficient agriculture to produce the required food and fiber products concomitant with ecologically efficient use of resources. This eco-efficiency concept is used to diagnose the state of agricultural production in China (irrigated wheat–maize double-cropping systems), Zimbabwe (rainfed maize systems), and Australia (rainfed wheat systems). More than 3,000 surveyed crop yields in these three countries were compared against simulated grain yields at farmer-specified levels of nitrogen (N) input. Many Australian commercial wheat farmers are both close to existing production frontiers and gain little prospective return from increasing their N input. Significant losses of N from their systems, either as nitrous oxide emissions or as nitrate leached from the soil profile, are infrequent and at low intensities relative to their level of grain production. These Australian farmers operate close to eco-efficient frontiers in regard to N, and so innovations in technologies and practices are essential to increasing their production without added economic or environmental risks. In contrast, many Chinese farmers can reduce N input without sacrificing production through more efficient use of their fertilizer input. In fact, there are real prospects for the double-cropping systems on the North China Plain to achieve both production increases and reduced environmental risks. Zimbabwean farmers have the opportunity for significant production increases by both improving their technical efficiency and increasing their level of input; however, doing so will require improved management expertise and greater access to institutional support for addressing the higher risks. This paper shows that pathways for achieving improved eco-efficiency will differ among diverse cropping systems. PMID:23671071

  2. Cyberdiversity: improving the informatic value of diverse tropical arthropod inventories.

    PubMed

    Miller, Jeremy A; Miller, Joshua H; Pham, Dinh-Sac; Beentjes, Kevin K

    2014-01-01

    In an era of biodiversity crisis, arthropods have great potential to inform conservation assessment and test hypotheses about community assembly. This is because their relatively narrow geographic distributions and high diversity offer high-resolution data on landscape-scale patterns of biodiversity. However, a major impediment to the more widespread application of arthropod data to a range of scientific and policy questions is the poor state of modern arthropod taxonomy, especially in the tropics. Inventories of spiders and other megadiverse arthropods from tropical forests are dominated by undescribed species. Such studies typically organize their data using morphospecies codes, which make it difficult for data from independent inventories to be compared and combined. To combat this shortcoming, we offer cyberdiversity, an online community-based approach for reconciling results of independent inventory studies where current taxonomic knowledge is incomplete. Participating scientists can upload images and DNA barcode sequences to dedicated databases and submit occurrence data and links to a web site (www.digitalSpiders.org). Taxonomic determinations can be shared with a crowdsourcing comments feature, and researchers can discover specimens of interest available for loan and request aliquots of genomic DNA extract. To demonstrate the value of the cyberdiversity framework, we reconcile data from three rapid structured inventories of spiders conducted in Vietnam with an independent inventory (Doi Inthanon, Thailand) using online image libraries. Species richness and inventory completeness were assessed using non-parametric estimators. Community similarity was evaluated using a novel index based on the Jaccard replacing observed with estimated values to correct for unobserved species. We use a distance-decay framework to demonstrate a rudimentary model of landscape-scale changes in community composition that will become increasingly informative as additional

  3. Cyberdiversity: improving the informatic value of diverse tropical arthropod inventories.

    PubMed

    Miller, Jeremy A; Miller, Joshua H; Pham, Dinh-Sac; Beentjes, Kevin K

    2014-01-01

    In an era of biodiversity crisis, arthropods have great potential to inform conservation assessment and test hypotheses about community assembly. This is because their relatively narrow geographic distributions and high diversity offer high-resolution data on landscape-scale patterns of biodiversity. However, a major impediment to the more widespread application of arthropod data to a range of scientific and policy questions is the poor state of modern arthropod taxonomy, especially in the tropics. Inventories of spiders and other megadiverse arthropods from tropical forests are dominated by undescribed species. Such studies typically organize their data using morphospecies codes, which make it difficult for data from independent inventories to be compared and combined. To combat this shortcoming, we offer cyberdiversity, an online community-based approach for reconciling results of independent inventory studies where current taxonomic knowledge is incomplete. Participating scientists can upload images and DNA barcode sequences to dedicated databases and submit occurrence data and links to a web site (www.digitalSpiders.org). Taxonomic determinations can be shared with a crowdsourcing comments feature, and researchers can discover specimens of interest available for loan and request aliquots of genomic DNA extract. To demonstrate the value of the cyberdiversity framework, we reconcile data from three rapid structured inventories of spiders conducted in Vietnam with an independent inventory (Doi Inthanon, Thailand) using online image libraries. Species richness and inventory completeness were assessed using non-parametric estimators. Community similarity was evaluated using a novel index based on the Jaccard replacing observed with estimated values to correct for unobserved species. We use a distance-decay framework to demonstrate a rudimentary model of landscape-scale changes in community composition that will become increasingly informative as additional

  4. Cyberdiversity: Improving the Informatic Value of Diverse Tropical Arthropod Inventories

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Jeremy A.; Miller, Joshua H.; Pham, Dinh-Sac; Beentjes, Kevin K.

    2014-01-01

    In an era of biodiversity crisis, arthropods have great potential to inform conservation assessment and test hypotheses about community assembly. This is because their relatively narrow geographic distributions and high diversity offer high-resolution data on landscape-scale patterns of biodiversity. However, a major impediment to the more widespread application of arthropod data to a range of scientific and policy questions is the poor state of modern arthropod taxonomy, especially in the tropics. Inventories of spiders and other megadiverse arthropods from tropical forests are dominated by undescribed species. Such studies typically organize their data using morphospecies codes, which make it difficult for data from independent inventories to be compared and combined. To combat this shortcoming, we offer cyberdiversity, an online community-based approach for reconciling results of independent inventory studies where current taxonomic knowledge is incomplete. Participating scientists can upload images and DNA barcode sequences to dedicated databases and submit occurrence data and links to a web site (www.digitalSpiders.org). Taxonomic determinations can be shared with a crowdsourcing comments feature, and researchers can discover specimens of interest available for loan and request aliquots of genomic DNA extract. To demonstrate the value of the cyberdiversity framework, we reconcile data from three rapid structured inventories of spiders conducted in Vietnam with an independent inventory (Doi Inthanon, Thailand) using online image libraries. Species richness and inventory completeness were assessed using non-parametric estimators. Community similarity was evaluated using a novel index based on the Jaccard replacing observed with estimated values to correct for unobserved species. We use a distance-decay framework to demonstrate a rudimentary model of landscape-scale changes in community composition that will become increasingly informative as additional

  5. Exploitation of interspecific diversity for monocot crop improvement

    PubMed Central

    King, J; Armstead, I; Harper, J; Ramsey, L; Snape, J; Waugh, R; James, C; Thomas, A; Gasior, D; Kelly, R; Roberts, L; Gustafson, P; King, I

    2013-01-01

    In many cultivated crop species there is limited genetic variation available for the development of new higher yielding varieties adapted to climate change and sustainable farming practises. The distant relatives of crop species provide a vast and largely untapped reservoir of genetic variation for a wide range of agronomically important traits that can be exploited by breeders for crop improvement. In this paper, in what we believe to be the largest introgression programme undertaken in the monocots, we describe the transfer of the entire genome of Festuca pratensis into Lolium perenne in overlapping chromosome segments. The L. perenne/F. pratensis introgressions were identified and characterised via 131 simple sequence repeats and 1612 SNPs anchored to the rice genome. Comparative analyses were undertaken to determine the syntenic relationship between L. perenne/F. pratensis and rice, wheat, barley, sorghum and Brachypodium distachyon. Analyses comparing recombination frequency and gene distribution indicated that a large proportion of the genes within the genome are located in the proximal regions of chromosomes which undergo low/very low frequencies of recombination. Thus, it is proposed that past breeding efforts to produce improved varieties have centred on the subset of genes located in the distal regions of chromosomes where recombination is highest. The use of alien introgression for crop improvement is important for meeting the challenges of global food supply and the monocots such as the forage grasses and cereals, together with recent technological advances in molecular biology, can help meet these challenges. PMID:23321705

  6. Technology for Improving Production, Economic Efficiency, Quality, and Sustainability in Peanut Production and Handling

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    USDA ARS National Peanut Research Laboratory has a very diverse scientific staff conducting research to address the needs of the United States peanut industry. Research is conducted in the fields of mycology, chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology, breeding, agronomy, economics, and engineering....

  7. Technology for improving production, economic efficiency, quality, and sustainability in peanut production and handling

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    USDA ARS National Peanut Research Laboratory has a very diverse scientific staff conducting research to address the needs of the United States peanut industry. Research is conducted in the fields of mycology, chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology, breeding, agronomy, economics, and engineering....

  8. Technology for Improving Production, Economic Efficiency, Quality and Sustainability in Peanut Production and Handling

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    USDA ARS National Peanut Research Laboratory has a very diverse scientific staff conducting research to address the needs of the United States peanut industry. Research is conducted in the fields of mycology, chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology, breeding, agronomy, economics, and engineering....

  9. Ontogeny strongly and differentially alters leaf economic and other key traits in three diverse Helianthus species.

    PubMed

    Mason, Chase M; McGaughey, Sarah E; Donovan, Lisa A

    2013-10-01

    The leaf economics spectrum (LES) describes large cross-species variation in suites of leaf functional traits ranging from resource-acquisitive to resource-conservative strategies. Such strategies have been integral in explaining plant adaptation to diverse environments, and have been linked to numerous ecosystem processes. The LES has previously been found to be significantly modulated by climate, soil fertility, biogeography, growth form, and life history. One largely unexplored aspect of LES variation, whole-plant ontogeny, is investigated here using multiple populations of three very different species of sunflower: Helianthus annuus, Helianthus mollis, and Helianthus radula. Plants were grown under environmentally controlled conditions and assessed for LES and related traits at four key developmental stages, using recently matured leaves to standardize for leaf age. Nearly every trait exhibited a significant ontogenetic shift in one or more species, with trait patterns differing among populations and species. Photosynthetic rate, leaf nitrogen concentration, and leaf mass per area exhibited surprisingly large changes, spanning over two-thirds of the original cross-species LES variation and shifting from resource-acquisitive to resource-conservative strategies as the plants matured. Other traits being investigated in relation to the LES, such as leaf water content, pH, and vein density, also showed large changes. The finding that ontogenetic variation in LES strategy can be substantial leads to a recommendation of standardization by developmental stage when assessing 'species values' of labile traits for comparative approaches. Additionally, the substantial ontogenetic trait shifts seen within single individuals provide an opportunity to uncover the contribution of gene regulatory changes to variation in LES traits.

  10. Availability of palliative care services for children with cancer in economically diverse regions of the world

    PubMed Central

    Delgado, Eduardo; Barfield, Raymond C.; Baker, Justin N.; Hinds, Pamela S.; Yang, Jie; Nambayan, Ayda; Quintana, Yuri; Kane, Javier R

    2010-01-01

    Purpose We assessed the availability and quality of palliative care for children with cancer according to national income per capita. Methods We surveyed physicians who care for children with cancer using the Cure4Kids website (http://www.cure4kids.org). Queries addressed oncology practice site; reimbursement; specialized palliative care, pain management, and bereavement care; location of death; decision-making support; and perceived quality of care. Responses were categorized by low -, middle-, and high-income country (LIC, MIC, HIC). Results Of 262 completed questionnaires from 58 countries (response rate, 59.8%), 242 were evaluable (55%). Out-of-pocket payment for oncology (14.8%), palliative care (21.9%), and comfort care medications (24.3%) was most likely to be required in LIC (p<0.001). Availability of specialized palliative care services, pain management, bereavement care, and institutional or national decision-making support was inversely related to income level. Availability of high-potency opioids (p=0.018) and adjuvant drugs (p=0.006) was significantly less likely in LIC. Physicians in LIC were significantly less likely than others to report high-quality pain control (p<0.001), non-pain symptom control (p=0.003), and emotional support (p=0.001); bereavement support (p=0.035); interdisciplinary care (p<0.001); and parental participation in decisions (p=0.013). Conclusion Specialized palliative care services are unavailable to children with cancer in economically diverse regions, but particularly in LIC. Access to adequate palliation is associated with national income. Program development strategies and collaborations less dependent on a single country’s economy are suggested. PMID:20541395

  11. Improving the diversity of manufacturing electroluminescent flat panel displays

    SciTech Connect

    Moss, T.S.; Samuels, J.A.; Smith, D.C.

    1995-09-01

    Crystalline calcium thiogallate with a cerium dopant has been deposited by metal-organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) at temperatures below 600{degrees}C on a low cost glass substrate. An EL luminance of 1.05 fL was observed 40 volts above threshold at 60 Hz. This is more than an order of magnitude improvement over earlier crystalline-as-deposited thiogallate materials. These results pave the way for the use of MOCVD as a potential method for processing full color thin-film electroluminescent (TFEL) flat panel displays. The formation of the CaGa{sub 2}S{sub 4}:Ce phosphor requires precise control over a number of deposition parameters including flow rates, substrate temperature, and reactor pressure. The influence of these parameters will be discussed in terms of structure, uniformity, and TFEL device performance.

  12. Quality improvement with a culturally diverse staff: implications for nurse managers.

    PubMed

    Frederick, B; Frederick, L

    1995-09-01

    Cultural diversity is a noticeable reality in today's work force. The problems resulting from cultural diversity pose special challenges to nurse managers. If nurse managers are to be successful at managing diversity, they need to not only be aware of the specific issues created by diversity, but they must plan effective management and leadership strategies to enable staff to collectively meet the desired goals of the work setting. The authors of this article are employed in one of the most culturally diverse work settings in the world. Their experiences in successfully implementing a quality improvement program, and in using strategies to gain shared vision and commitment by management and staff, will be explored and the implications for nurse managers outlined.

  13. Can combining economizers with improved filtration save energy and protect equipment in data centers?

    SciTech Connect

    Shehabi, Arman; Ganguly, Srirupa; Gundel, Lara A.; Horvath, Arpad; Kirchstetter, Thomas W.; Lunden, Melissa M.; Tschudi, William; Gadgil, Ashok J.; Nazaroff, William W

    2009-06-05

    Economizer use in data centers is an energy efficiency strategy that could significantly limit electricity demand in this rapidly growing economic sector. Widespread economizer implementation, however, has been hindered by potential equipment reliability concerns associated with exposing information technology equipment to particulate matter of outdoor origin. This study explores the feasibility of using economizers in data centers to save energy while controlling particle concentrations with high-quality air filtration. Physical and chemical properties of indoor and outdoor particles were analyzed at an operating northern California data center equipped with an economizer under varying levels of air filtration efficiency. Results show that when improved filtration is used in combination with an economizer, the indoor/outdoor concentration ratios for most measured particle types were similar to levels when using conventional filtration without economizers. An energy analysis of the data center reveals that, even during the summer months, chiller savings from economizer use greatly outweigh any increase in fan power associated with improved filtration. These findings indicate that economizer use combined with improved filtration could reduce data center energy demand while providing a level of protection from particles of outdoor origin similar to that observed with conventional design.

  14. Improving Education Outcomes in Germany. OECD Economics Department Working Papers, No. 611

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carey, David

    2008-01-01

    Improving education outcomes is important for Germany's long-term economic performance and social cohesion. While student achievement is above the OECD average in science and at the OECD average in reading and mathematics according to the 2006 OECD PISA study, weaker students tend to do badly by international comparison and socio-economic and/or…

  15. Reduced foodborne toxin exposure is a benefit of improving dietary diversity.

    PubMed

    Wu, Felicia; Mitchell, Nicole J; Male, Denis; Kensler, Thomas W

    2014-10-01

    Naturally occurring foodborne toxins are common in subsistence diets of low-income human populations worldwide. Often, these populations rely on one or two staple foods for the bulk of their calories, making them more susceptible to chronic intake of certain toxins. Exposure to common foodborne toxins is associated with diverse conditions such as cancer, immunotoxicity, growth impairment, and neurological deficits. Interventions focused solely on reducing toxin levels have proven difficult to sustain. Using case studies of two foodborne toxins, aflatoxin and cassava cyanide, this article addresses the heightened risk of particular diseases from eating monotonous diets based in maize, groundnuts, and cassava: common in sub-Saharan Africa and parts of Asia. We also discuss the potential role of increased dietary diversity in counteracting these diseases. Increased dietary diversity can reduce consumption of toxins and increase intake of nutrients that could counteract the toxicity of such chemicals. In Qidong, China, a population that previously consumed a monotonous maize-based diet and increased dietary diversity since the 1980s has experienced a dramatic reduction in liver cancer mortalities. That liver cancer decreased as dietary diversity increased is the catalyst for the hypothesis that dietary diversity could have a direct impact on reducing health effects of foodborne toxins. Future research, agricultural development, and food policy reforms should take into consideration the multifaceted benefits associated with improved dietary diversity. Collaborations between toxicologists, nutritionists, and policymakers are important to development of sustainable interventions to reduce foodborne toxin exposure and promote health through increased dietary diversity. PMID:25015663

  16. Reduced Foodborne Toxin Exposure Is a Benefit of Improving Dietary Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Felicia; Mitchell, Nicole J.; Male, Denis; Kensler, Thomas W.

    2014-01-01

    Naturally occurring foodborne toxins are common in subsistence diets of low-income human populations worldwide. Often, these populations rely on one or two staple foods for the bulk of their calories, making them more susceptible to chronic intake of certain toxins. Exposure to common foodborne toxins is associated with diverse conditions such as cancer, immunotoxicity, growth impairment, and neurological deficits. Interventions focused solely on reducing toxin levels have proven difficult to sustain. Using case studies of two foodborne toxins, aflatoxin and cassava cyanide, this article addresses the heightened risk of particular diseases from eating monotonous diets based in maize, groundnuts, and cassava: common in sub-Saharan Africa and parts of Asia. We also discuss the potential role of increased dietary diversity in counteracting these diseases. Increased dietary diversity can reduce consumption of toxins and increase intake of nutrients that could counteract the toxicity of such chemicals. In Qidong, China, a population that previously consumed a monotonous maize-based diet and increased dietary diversity since the 1980s has experienced a dramatic reduction in liver cancer mortalities. That liver cancer decreased as dietary diversity increased is the catalyst for the hypothesis that dietary diversity could have a direct impact on reducing health effects of foodborne toxins. Future research, agricultural development, and food policy reforms should take into consideration the multifaceted benefits associated with improved dietary diversity. Collaborations between toxicologists, nutritionists, and policymakers are important to development of sustainable interventions to reduce foodborne toxin exposure and promote health through increased dietary diversity. PMID:25015663

  17. Reduced foodborne toxin exposure is a benefit of improving dietary diversity.

    PubMed

    Wu, Felicia; Mitchell, Nicole J; Male, Denis; Kensler, Thomas W

    2014-10-01

    Naturally occurring foodborne toxins are common in subsistence diets of low-income human populations worldwide. Often, these populations rely on one or two staple foods for the bulk of their calories, making them more susceptible to chronic intake of certain toxins. Exposure to common foodborne toxins is associated with diverse conditions such as cancer, immunotoxicity, growth impairment, and neurological deficits. Interventions focused solely on reducing toxin levels have proven difficult to sustain. Using case studies of two foodborne toxins, aflatoxin and cassava cyanide, this article addresses the heightened risk of particular diseases from eating monotonous diets based in maize, groundnuts, and cassava: common in sub-Saharan Africa and parts of Asia. We also discuss the potential role of increased dietary diversity in counteracting these diseases. Increased dietary diversity can reduce consumption of toxins and increase intake of nutrients that could counteract the toxicity of such chemicals. In Qidong, China, a population that previously consumed a monotonous maize-based diet and increased dietary diversity since the 1980s has experienced a dramatic reduction in liver cancer mortalities. That liver cancer decreased as dietary diversity increased is the catalyst for the hypothesis that dietary diversity could have a direct impact on reducing health effects of foodborne toxins. Future research, agricultural development, and food policy reforms should take into consideration the multifaceted benefits associated with improved dietary diversity. Collaborations between toxicologists, nutritionists, and policymakers are important to development of sustainable interventions to reduce foodborne toxin exposure and promote health through increased dietary diversity.

  18. How can we improve socio-economic condition of women?

    PubMed

    Mohapatra, P C; Pattanaik, B E

    Aspects of discrimination against women in India are summarized, a case study of a rural district in Orissa is presented, and the article follows with a suggested 3-part strategy of education, employment and appropriate technology. The economic role played by women is difficult to quantitate because of their lifestyle that combines domestic work and unpaid family or low-paid outside farm or cottage industry labor. Besides these tasks, women usually care for dairy animals, and carry water and firewood. Discrimination against women in this system is evident, however, from some available statistics. 46% of women, as opposed to 20% of men, work as agricultural laborers. Women are denied education because they are not expected to do responsible work, then they are denied employment because they are not educated. Their work is counted as worth only half that of men, and based on this assumption, they are paid less then men. The male heads of 124 households in 7 villages in the Orissa area were interviewed to study labor participation of household members. 89% of the people worked in agriculture, 94% in rice paddy and 6% in oilseed or pulses for cash crops. The average farm size was 2.29 acres. Female literacy had risen to 14.3% from 1% 10 years before. Women usually worked in transplantation, weeding, harvesting and threshing, but also in heavier farm labor, construction of roads and buildings, quarrying and forestry. In this poor, hilly region, the custom of purdah was not practiced to the extent of keeping women from doing day labor outside the home. The authors' suggested strategy for women's development included appropriate technology such as the Gobar methane gas plant, provision of credit for women's industries, retention of girls in school and literacy programs for girls and women, and higher wages for women. PMID:12281792

  19. How can we improve socio-economic condition of women?

    PubMed

    Mohapatra, P C; Pattanaik, B E

    Aspects of discrimination against women in India are summarized, a case study of a rural district in Orissa is presented, and the article follows with a suggested 3-part strategy of education, employment and appropriate technology. The economic role played by women is difficult to quantitate because of their lifestyle that combines domestic work and unpaid family or low-paid outside farm or cottage industry labor. Besides these tasks, women usually care for dairy animals, and carry water and firewood. Discrimination against women in this system is evident, however, from some available statistics. 46% of women, as opposed to 20% of men, work as agricultural laborers. Women are denied education because they are not expected to do responsible work, then they are denied employment because they are not educated. Their work is counted as worth only half that of men, and based on this assumption, they are paid less then men. The male heads of 124 households in 7 villages in the Orissa area were interviewed to study labor participation of household members. 89% of the people worked in agriculture, 94% in rice paddy and 6% in oilseed or pulses for cash crops. The average farm size was 2.29 acres. Female literacy had risen to 14.3% from 1% 10 years before. Women usually worked in transplantation, weeding, harvesting and threshing, but also in heavier farm labor, construction of roads and buildings, quarrying and forestry. In this poor, hilly region, the custom of purdah was not practiced to the extent of keeping women from doing day labor outside the home. The authors' suggested strategy for women's development included appropriate technology such as the Gobar methane gas plant, provision of credit for women's industries, retention of girls in school and literacy programs for girls and women, and higher wages for women.

  20. Examining economic improvements in managing diabetes in the nursing home.

    PubMed

    Dornberger, S; Stone, D; Elliott-Bynum, S

    1999-01-01

    In 1997, two-thirds of the medical cost of diabetes was borne by the elderly and nursing home care attributable to diabetes accounted for a third of that financial burden. The development of the Insulin Delivery Pen system can provide cost efficiency, and concurrently reduce the potential for contamination, free up nursing time, improve the administration process, and maintain dosing accuracy. The insulin pen delivery system (vs. the traditional vial and syringe method) is an attractive and cost effective option in the treatment of diabetes mellitus for residents in nursing facilities.

  1. Economic Impact on the Justice System from Reductions in Diversion Program Funding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dembo, Richard; Wareham, Jennifer; Chirikos, Thomas N.; Schmeidler, James

    2005-01-01

    Following a national trend of "getting tough" on increased juvenile crime, the Florida legislature eliminated one of the primary community service-oriented juvenile diversion programs, the Juvenile Alternative Services Program (JASP). JASP was subsequently replaced with four other diversion programs, two of which (the Walker Plan and an expanded…

  2. Improving SFR Economics through Innovations from Thermal Design and Analysis Aspects

    SciTech Connect

    Haihua Zhao; Hongbin Zhang; Vincent Mousseau; Per F. Peterson

    2008-06-01

    Achieving economic competitiveness as compared to LWRs and other Generation IV (Gen-IV) reactors is one of the major requirements for large-scale investment in commercial sodium cooled fast reactor (SFR) power plants. Advances in R&D for advanced SFR fuel and structural materials provide key long-term opportunities to improve SFR economics. In addition, other new opportunities are emerging to further improve SFR economics. This paper provides an overview on potential ideas from the perspective of thermal hydraulics to improve SFR economics. These include a new hybrid loop-pool reactor design to further optimize economics, safety, and reliability of SFRs with more flexibility, a multiple reheat and intercooling helium Brayton cycle to improve plant thermal efficiency and reduce safety related overnight and operation costs, and modern multi-physics thermal analysis methods to reduce analysis uncertainties and associated requirements for over-conservatism in reactor design. This paper reviews advances in all three of these areas and their potential beneficial impacts on SFR economics.

  3. Creating Taxonomies to Improve School-Home Connections with Families of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Linse, Caroline Teresa

    2011-01-01

    Families of culturally and linguistically diverse pupils often do not participate fully in their children's school-based education. The purpose of this article is to introduce taxonomies as a means to examine and improve school practices and levels of responsiveness to families whose home language is not English, so that families feel more…

  4. Visual Working Memory in Deaf Children with Diverse Communication Modes: Improvement by Differential Outcomes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lopez-Crespo, Ginesa; Daza, Maria Teresa; Mendez-Lopez, Magdalena

    2012-01-01

    Although visual functions have been proposed to be enhanced in deaf individuals, empirical studies have not yet established clear evidence on this issue. The present study aimed to determine whether deaf children with diverse communication modes had superior visual memory and whether their performance was improved by the use of differential…

  5. Diversity selection of compounds based on 'protein affinity fingerprints' improves sampling of bioactive chemical space.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Ha P; Koutsoukas, Alexios; Mohd Fauzi, Fazlin; Drakakis, Georgios; Maciejewski, Mateusz; Glen, Robert C; Bender, Andreas

    2013-09-01

    Diversity selection is a frequently applied strategy for assembling high-throughput screening libraries, making the assumption that a diverse compound set increases chances of finding bioactive molecules. Based on previous work on experimental 'affinity fingerprints', in this study, a novel diversity selection method is benchmarked that utilizes predicted bioactivity profiles as descriptors. Compounds were selected based on their predicted activity against half of the targets (training set), and diversity was assessed based on coverage of the remaining (test set) targets. Simultaneously, fingerprint-based diversity selection was performed. An original version of the method exhibited on average 5% and an improved version on average 10% increase in target space coverage compared with the fingerprint-based methods. As a typical case, bioactivity-based selection of 231 compounds (2%) from a particular data set ('Cutoff-40') resulted in 47.0% and 50.1% coverage, while fingerprint-based selection only achieved 38.4% target coverage for the same subset size. In conclusion, the novel bioactivity-based selection method outperformed the fingerprint-based method in sampling bioactive chemical space on the data sets considered. The structures retrieved were structurally more acceptable to medicinal chemists while at the same time being more lipophilic, hence bioactivity-based diversity selection of compounds would best be combined with physicochemical property filters in practice.

  6. Tree diversity does not always improve resistance of forest ecosystems to drought.

    PubMed

    Grossiord, Charlotte; Granier, André; Ratcliffe, Sophia; Bouriaud, Olivier; Bruelheide, Helge; Chećko, Ewa; Forrester, David Ian; Dawud, Seid Muhie; Finér, Leena; Pollastrini, Martina; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Valladares, Fernando; Bonal, Damien; Gessler, Arthur

    2014-10-14

    Climate models predict an increase in the intensity and frequency of drought episodes in the Northern Hemisphere. Among terrestrial ecosystems, forests will be profoundly impacted by drier climatic conditions, with drastic consequences for the functions and services they supply. Simultaneously, biodiversity is known to support a wide range of forest ecosystem functions and services. However, whether biodiversity also improves the resistance of these ecosystems to drought remains unclear. We compared soil drought exposure levels in a total of 160 forest stands within five major forest types across Europe along a gradient of tree species diversity. We assessed soil drought exposure in each forest stand by calculating the stand-level increase in carbon isotope composition of late wood from a wet to a dry year (Δδ(13)CS). Δδ(13)CS exhibited a negative linear relationship with tree species diversity in two forest types, suggesting that species interactions in these forests diminished the drought exposure of the ecosystem. However, the other three forest types were unaffected by tree species diversity. We conclude that higher diversity enhances resistance to drought events only in drought-prone environments. Managing forest ecosystems for high tree species diversity does not necessarily assure improved adaptability to the more severe and frequent drought events predicted for the future. PMID:25267642

  7. Tree diversity does not always improve resistance of forest ecosystems to drought

    PubMed Central

    Grossiord, Charlotte; Granier, André; Ratcliffe, Sophia; Bouriaud, Olivier; Bruelheide, Helge; Chećko, Ewa; Forrester, David Ian; Dawud, Seid Muhie; Finér, Leena; Pollastrini, Martina; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Valladares, Fernando; Bonal, Damien

    2014-01-01

    Climate models predict an increase in the intensity and frequency of drought episodes in the Northern Hemisphere. Among terrestrial ecosystems, forests will be profoundly impacted by drier climatic conditions, with drastic consequences for the functions and services they supply. Simultaneously, biodiversity is known to support a wide range of forest ecosystem functions and services. However, whether biodiversity also improves the resistance of these ecosystems to drought remains unclear. We compared soil drought exposure levels in a total of 160 forest stands within five major forest types across Europe along a gradient of tree species diversity. We assessed soil drought exposure in each forest stand by calculating the stand-level increase in carbon isotope composition of late wood from a wet to a dry year (Δδ13CS). Δδ13CS exhibited a negative linear relationship with tree species diversity in two forest types, suggesting that species interactions in these forests diminished the drought exposure of the ecosystem. However, the other three forest types were unaffected by tree species diversity. We conclude that higher diversity enhances resistance to drought events only in drought-prone environments. Managing forest ecosystems for high tree species diversity does not necessarily assure improved adaptability to the more severe and frequent drought events predicted for the future. PMID:25267642

  8. A plan for the economic assessment of the benefits of improved meteorological forecasts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bhattacharyya, R.; Greenberg, J.

    1975-01-01

    Benefit-cost relationships for the development of meteorological satellites are outlined. The weather forecast capabilities of the various weather satellites (Tiros, SEOS, Nimbus) are discussed, and the development of additional satellite systems is examined. A rational approach is development that leads to the establishment of the economic benefits which may result from the utilization of meteorological satellite data. The economic and social impacts of improved weather forecasting for industries and resources management are discussed, and significant weather sensitive industries are listed.

  9. Economics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Online-Offline, 1998

    1998-01-01

    This issue focuses on the theme of economics, and presents educational resources for teaching basics to children. Web sites, CD-ROMs and software, videos, books, and additional resources, as well as activities which focus on economics are described. Includes short features on related topics, and the subtopics of trade, money and banking, and…

  10. Economics.

    PubMed

    Palley, Paul D; Parcero, Miriam E

    2016-10-01

    A review of literature in the calendar year 2015 dedicated to environmental policies and sustainable development, and economic policies. This review is divided into these sections: sustainable development, irrigation, ecosystems and water management, climate change and disaster risk management, economic growth, water supply policies, water consumption, water price regulation, and water price valuation.

  11. Economics.

    PubMed

    Palley, Paul D; Parcero, Miriam E

    2016-10-01

    A review of literature in the calendar year 2015 dedicated to environmental policies and sustainable development, and economic policies. This review is divided into these sections: sustainable development, irrigation, ecosystems and water management, climate change and disaster risk management, economic growth, water supply policies, water consumption, water price regulation, and water price valuation. PMID:27620113

  12. Economics of improved estuarine water quality: an NEP manual for measuring benefits

    SciTech Connect

    Caulkins, P.; Armitage, T.; Pryor, M.; Bigelow, T.

    1990-09-01

    Section 320 of the Clean Water Act provides for the development of Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plans (CCMPs) for estuaries of National significance. To ensure the greatest return on resources spent, it is often necessary to document the economic benefits associated with alternative management strategies. The purpose of the manual is to assist estuary program managers and staff in identifying, estimating, and evaluating the economic benefits of water quality improvements created by various pollution abatement options. Estimating economic benefits helps to determine that a project's benefits are reasonably commensurate with the project's costs.

  13. South Africa: Distance Higher Education Policies for Access, Social Equity, Quality, and Social and Economic Responsiveness in a Context of the Diversity of Provision

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Badat, Saleem

    2005-01-01

    The principal concern of this paper is the implication of the increasing diversity of higher education provision in South Africa for equity of access and opportunity for historically disadvantaged social groups, high-quality provision, and social and economic responsiveness in distance higher education. This diversity is signalled by a variety of…

  14. Techno-economical study of biogas production improved by steam explosion pretreatment.

    PubMed

    Shafiei, Marzieh; Kabir, Maryam M; Zilouei, Hamid; Sárvári Horváth, Ilona; Karimi, Keikhosro

    2013-11-01

    Economic feasibility of steam explosion pretreatment for improvement of biogas production from wheat straw and paper tube residuals was investigated. The process was simulated by Aspen plus ®, and the economical feasibility of five different plant capacities was studied by Aspen Process Economic Analyzer. Total project investment of a plant using paper tube residuals or wheat straw was 63.9 or 61.8 million Euros, respectively. The manufacturing cost of raw biogas for these two feedstocks was calculated to 0.36 or 0.48 €/m(3) of methane, respectively. Applying steam explosion pretreatment resulted in 13% higher total capital investment while significantly improved the economy of the biogas plant and decreased the manufacturing cost of methane by 36%. The sensitivity analysis showed that 5% improvement in the methane yield and 20% decrease in the raw material price resulted in 5.5% and 8% decrease in the manufacturing cost of methane, respectively.

  15. Optimal Deployment of Thermal Energy Storage under Diverse Economic and Climate Conditions

    SciTech Connect

    DeForest, Nicolas; Mendes, Goncalo; Stadler, Michael; Feng, Wei; Lai, Judy; Marnay, Chris

    2014-04-15

    This paper presents an investigation of the economic benefit of thermal energy storage (TES) for cooling, across a range of economic and climate conditions. Chilled water TES systems are simulated for a large office building in four distinct locations, Miami in the U.S.; Lisbon, Portugal; Shanghai, China; and Mumbai, India. Optimal system size and operating schedules are determined using the optimization model DER-CAM, such that total cost, including electricity and amortized capital costs are minimized. The economic impacts of each optimized TES system is then compared to systems sized using a simple heuristic method, which bases system size as fraction (50percent and 100percent) of total on-peak summer cooling loads. Results indicate that TES systems of all sizes can be effective in reducing annual electricity costs (5percent-15percent) and peak electricity consumption (13percent-33percent). The investigation also indentifies a number of criteria which drive TES investment, including low capital costs, electricity tariffs with high power demand charges and prolonged cooling seasons. In locations where these drivers clearly exist, the heuristically sized systems capture much of the value of optimally sized systems; between 60percent and 100percent in terms of net present value. However, in instances where these drivers are less pronounced, the heuristic tends to oversize systems, and optimization becomes crucial to ensure economically beneficial deployment of TES, increasing the net present value of heuristically sized systems by as much as 10 times in some instances.

  16. Economics of Caring Labor: Improving Compensation in the Early Childhood Workforce. Summary. Working Paper Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ripple, Carol

    Improving compensation in early care and education (ECE) has been and will continue to be an extremely difficult policy issue. The Mailman Family Foundation and the Foundation for Child Development convened a group of 18 representatives of diverse disciplines concerned about child- and elder-care compensation. This report details the issues…

  17. Economics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    James, L. D.

    1978-01-01

    Presents a literature review of the economic aspects of water pollution control covering publications of 1976-77. This review also includes the policy issues of water management. A list of 77 references is presented. (HM)

  18. Evaluation of a service intervention to improve awareness and uptake of bowel cancer screening in ethnically-diverse areas

    PubMed Central

    Shankleman, J; Massat, N J; Khagram, L; Ariyanayagam, S; Garner, A; Khatoon, S; Rainbow, S; Rangrez, S; Colorado, Z; Hu, W; Parmar, D; Duffy, S W

    2014-01-01

    Background: Uptake of bowel cancer screening is lowest in London, in populations of lower socio-economic status, and in particular ethnic or religious groups. Methods: We report on the evaluation of two interventions to improve uptake in an area including populations of low socio-economic status and considerable ethnic diversity. The interventions were face-to-face health promotion on bowel cancer screening at invitees' general practice and health promotion delivered by telephone only. Nine large general practices in East London were chosen at random to offer face-to-face health promotion, and nine other large practices to offer telephone health promotion, with 24 practices of similar size as comparators. Data at practice level were analysed by Mann–Whitney–Wilcoxon tests and grouped-logistic regression. Results: There were 2034 invitees in the telephone intervention practices, 1852 in the face-to-face intervention practices and 5227 in the comparison practices. Median gFOBt kit uptake in the target population (aged 59–70) was 46.7% in the telephone practices, 43.8% in the face-to-face practices and 39.1% in the comparison practices. Significant improvements in the odds of uptake were observed following telephone intervention in both males (OR=1.39, 95% CI=1.20–1.61, P<0.001) and females (OR=1.49, 95% CI=1.29–1.73, P<0.001), while the face-to-face intervention mainly impacted uptake in males (OR=1.23, 95% CI=1.10–1.36), P<0.001) but did not lead to a significant increase in females (OR=1.12, 95% CI=0.96–1.29, P=0.2). Conclusions: Personally delivered health promotion improved uptake of bowel cancer screening in areas of low socio-economic status and high ethnic diversity. The intervention by telephone appears to be the most effective method. PMID:24983374

  19. Modelling snow cover duration improves predictions of functional and taxonomic diversity for alpine plant communities

    PubMed Central

    Carlson, Bradley Z.; Choler, Philippe; Renaud, Julien; Dedieu, Jean-Pierre; Thuiller, Wilfried

    2015-01-01

    Background and Aims Quantifying relationships between snow cover duration and plant community properties remains an important challenge in alpine ecology. This study develops a method to estimate spatial variation in energy availability in the context of a topographically complex, high-elevation watershed, which was used to test the explanatory power of environmental gradients both with and without snow cover in relation to taxonomic and functional plant diversity. Methods Snow cover in the French Alps was mapped at 15-m resolution using Landsat imagery for five recent years, and a generalized additive model (GAM) was fitted for each year linking snow to time and topography. Predicted snow cover maps were combined with air temperature and solar radiation data at daily resolution, summed for each year and averaged across years. Equivalent growing season energy gradients were also estimated without accounting for snow cover duration. Relationships were tested between environmental gradients and diversity metrics measured for 100 plots, including species richness, community-weighted mean traits, functional diversity and hyperspectral estimates of canopy chlorophyll content. Key Results Accounting for snow cover in environmental variables consistently led to improved predictive power as well as more ecologically meaningful characterizations of plant diversity. Model parameters differed significantly when fitted with and without snow cover. Filtering solar radiation with snow as compared without led to an average gain in R2 of 0·26 and reversed slope direction to more intuitive relationships for several diversity metrics. Conclusions The results show that in alpine environments high-resolution data on snow cover duration are pivotal for capturing the spatial heterogeneity of both taxonomic and functional diversity. The use of climate variables without consideration of snow cover can lead to erroneous predictions of plant diversity. The results further indicate that

  20. It may be harder than we thought, but political diversity will (still) improve social psychological science.

    PubMed

    Crawford, Jarret T; Duarte, José L; Haidt, Jonathan; Jussim, Lee; Stern, Charlotta; Tetlock, Philip E

    2015-01-01

    In our target article, we made four claims: (1) Social psychology is now politically homogeneous; (2) this homogeneity sometimes harms the science; (3) increasing political diversity would reduce this damage; and (4) some portion of the homogeneity is due to a hostile climate and outright discrimination against non-liberals. In this response, we review these claims in light of the arguments made by a diverse group of commentators. We were surprised to find near-universal agreement with our first two claims, and we note that few challenged our fourth claim. Most of the disagreements came in response to our claim that increasing political diversity would be beneficial. We agree with our critics that increasing political diversity may be harder than we had thought, but we explain why we still believe that it is possible and desirable to do so. We conclude with a revised list of 12 recommendations for improving political diversity in social psychology, as well as in other areas of the academy. PMID:26816000

  1. It may be harder than we thought, but political diversity will (still) improve social psychological science.

    PubMed

    Crawford, Jarret T; Duarte, José L; Haidt, Jonathan; Jussim, Lee; Stern, Charlotta; Tetlock, Philip E

    2015-01-01

    In our target article, we made four claims: (1) Social psychology is now politically homogeneous; (2) this homogeneity sometimes harms the science; (3) increasing political diversity would reduce this damage; and (4) some portion of the homogeneity is due to a hostile climate and outright discrimination against non-liberals. In this response, we review these claims in light of the arguments made by a diverse group of commentators. We were surprised to find near-universal agreement with our first two claims, and we note that few challenged our fourth claim. Most of the disagreements came in response to our claim that increasing political diversity would be beneficial. We agree with our critics that increasing political diversity may be harder than we had thought, but we explain why we still believe that it is possible and desirable to do so. We conclude with a revised list of 12 recommendations for improving political diversity in social psychology, as well as in other areas of the academy.

  2. Conditional economic incentives to improve HIV treatment adherence: literature review and theoretical considerations.

    PubMed

    Galárraga, Omar; Genberg, Becky L; Martin, Rosemarie A; Barton Laws, M; Wilson, Ira B

    2013-09-01

    We present selected theoretical issues regarding conditional economic incentives (CEI) for HIV treatment adherence. High HIV treatment adherence is essential not only to improve individual health for persons living with HIV, but also to reduce transmission. The incentives literature spans several decades and various disciplines, thus we selectively point out useful concepts from economics, psychology and HIV clinical practice to elucidate the complex interaction between socio-economic issues, psychological perspectives and optimal treatment adherence. Appropriately-implemented CEI can help patients improve their adherence to HIV treatment in the short-term, while the incentives are in place. However, more research is needed to uncover mechanisms that can increase habit formation or maintenance effects in the longer-term. We suggest some potentially fruitful avenues for future research in this area, including the use of concepts from self-determination theory. This general framework may have implications for related research among disadvantaged communities with high rates of HIV/AIDS infection.

  3. Social and Economic Benefits of Improved Adult Literacy: Towards a Better Understanding: Support Document

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hartley, Robyn; Horne, Jackie

    2005-01-01

    This document was produced by the authors based on their research for the report, "Social and Economic Benefits of Improved Adult Literacy: Towards a Better Understanding," and is an added resource for further information. The original document is a feasibility study which explores the frameworks and methodologies available for determining and…

  4. Randomized Controlled Trial of Teaching Methods: Do Classroom Experiments Improve Economic Education in High Schools?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eisenkopf, Gerald; Sulser, Pascal A.

    2016-01-01

    The authors present results from a comprehensive field experiment at Swiss high schools in which they compare the effectiveness of teaching methods in economics. They randomly assigned classes into an experimental and a conventional teaching group, or a control group that received no specific instruction. Both teaching treatments improve economic…

  5. The Role of Christian Educational Institutions in Improving Economic Self-Reliance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nwosu, Constance C.

    2012-01-01

    This article argues that Christian educational institutions in Africa can play a major role in improving economic self-reliance within the continent, if those who establish Christian universities there take time to plan the programs and activities in those institutions. Specifically, it argues that with proper planning of quality education--the…

  6. Integrating Literacy, Culture, and Language to Improve Health Care Quality for Diverse Populations

    PubMed Central

    Andrulis, Dennis P.; Brach, Cindy

    2016-01-01

    Objective To understand the interrelationship of literacy, culture, and language and the importance of addressing their intersection. Methods Health literacy, cultural competence, and linguistic competence strategies to quality improvement were analyzed. Results Strategies to improve health literacy for low-literate individuals are distinct from strategies for culturally diverse and individuals with limited English proficiency (LEP). The lack of integration results in health care that is unresponsive to some vulnerable groups’ needs. A vision for integrated care is presented. Conclusion Clinicians, the health care team, and health care organizations have important roles to play in addressing challenges related to literacy, culture, and language. PMID:17931131

  7. Health Outcomes in Young Adults From Foster Care and Economically Diverse Backgrounds

    PubMed Central

    Garrison, Michelle M.; Courtney, Mark E.

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Foster youth have high rates of health problems in childhood. Little work has been done to determine whether they are similarly vulnerable to increased health problems once they transition to adulthood. We sought to prospectively evaluate the risk of cardiovascular risk factors and other chronic conditions among young adults formerly in foster care (FC) and young adults from economically insecure (EI) and economically secure (ES) backgrounds in the general population. METHODS: We used data from the Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth (FC group; N = 596) and an age-matched sample from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (EI and ES groups; N = 456 and 1461, respectively). After controlling for covariates, we performed multivariate regressions to evaluate health outcomes and care access by group at 2 time points (baseline at late adolescence, follow-up at 25–26 years). RESULTS: Data revealed a consistent pattern of graduated increase in odds of most health outcomes, progressing from ES to EI to FC groups. Health care access indicators were more variable; the FC group was most likely to report having Medicaid or no insurance but was least likely to report not getting needed care in the past year. CONCLUSIONS: Former foster youth appear to have a higher risk of multiple chronic health conditions, beyond that which is associated with economic insecurity. Findings may be relevant to policymakers and practitioners considering the implementation of extended insurance and foster care programs and interventions to reduce health disparities in young adulthood. PMID:25367543

  8. Engineering: Economic analysis of improved heat pump performance for minimum standards development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petersen, S. R.; Barnes, K. A.; Kelly, G. E.

    1981-07-01

    A methodology and seasonal performance data are given that could be used in the development of a reference basis for minimum efficiency standards for heat pumps that are economically justified on a life cycle basis. Criteria for economic optimization are outlined. The methodology used to computer seasonal heating and cooling performance ratings and the annual energy savings resulting from efficiency improvements, by climate region, is detailed. The interdependence between efficiency ratings in the heating and cooling modes is explored using statistical analysis. An example of the procedure for determining maximum cost effective efficiency levels is demonstrated for a 36,000 Btu/h heat pump.

  9. The benefits of improved technologies in agricultural aviation. [economic impact and aircraft configurations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1978-01-01

    The economic benefits attributable to a variety of potential technological improvements in agricultural aviation are discussed. Topics covered include: the ag-air industry, the data base used to estimate the potential benefits and a summary of the potential benefits from technological improvements; ag-air activities in the United States; foreign ag-air activities; major ag-air aircraft is use and manufacturers' sales and distribution networks; and estimates of the benefits to the United States of proposed technological improvements to the aircraft and dispersal equipment. A bibliography of references is appended.

  10. Improved BDF relaying scheme using time diversity over atmospheric turbulence and misalignment fading channels.

    PubMed

    García-Zambrana, Antonio; Castillo-Vázquez, Carmen; Castillo-Vázquez, Beatriz

    2014-01-01

    A novel bit-detect-and-forward (BDF) relaying scheme based on repetition coding with the relay is proposed, significantly improving the robustness to impairments proper to free-space optical (FSO) communications such as unsuitable alignment between transmitter and receiver as well as fluctuations in the irradiance of the transmitted optical beam due to the atmospheric turbulence. Closed-form asymptotic bit-error-rate (BER) expressions are derived for a 3-way FSO communication setup. Fully exploiting the potential time-diversity available in the relay turbulent channel, a relevant better performance is achieved, showing a greater robustness to the relay location since a high diversity gain is provided regardless of the source-destination link distance.

  11. Improved BDF Relaying Scheme Using Time Diversity over Atmospheric Turbulence and Misalignment Fading Channels

    PubMed Central

    García-Zambrana, Antonio; Castillo-Vázquez, Carmen; Castillo-Vázquez, Beatriz

    2014-01-01

    A novel bit-detect-and-forward (BDF) relaying scheme based on repetition coding with the relay is proposed, significantly improving the robustness to impairments proper to free-space optical (FSO) communications such as unsuitable alignment between transmitter and receiver as well as fluctuations in the irradiance of the transmitted optical beam due to the atmospheric turbulence. Closed-form asymptotic bit-error-rate (BER) expressions are derived for a 3-way FSO communication setup. Fully exploiting the potential time-diversity available in the relay turbulent channel, a relevant better performance is achieved, showing a greater robustness to the relay location since a high diversity gain is provided regardless of the source-destination link distance. PMID:24587711

  12. Afforestation or intense pasturing improve the ecological and economic value of abandoned tropical farmlands.

    PubMed

    Knoke, Thomas; Bendix, Jörg; Pohle, Perdita; Hamer, Ute; Hildebrandt, Patrick; Roos, Kristin; Gerique, Andrés; Sandoval, María L; Breuer, Lutz; Tischer, Alexander; Silva, Brenner; Calvas, Baltazar; Aguirre, Nikolay; Castro, Luz M; Windhorst, David; Weber, Michael; Stimm, Bernd; Günter, Sven; Palomeque, Ximena; Mora, Julio; Mosandl, Reinhard; Beck, Erwin

    2014-11-26

    Increasing demands for livelihood resources in tropical rural areas have led to progressive clearing of biodiverse natural forests. Restoration of abandoned farmlands could counter this process. However, as aims and modes of restoration differ in their ecological and socio-economic value, the assessment of achievable ecosystem functions and benefits requires holistic investigation. Here we combine the results from multidisciplinary research for a unique assessment based on a normalization of 23 ecological, economic and social indicators for four restoration options in the tropical Andes of Ecuador. A comparison of the outcomes among afforestation with native alder or exotic pine, pasture restoration with either low-input or intense management and the abandoned status quo shows that both variants of afforestation and intense pasture use improve the ecological value, but low-input pasture does not. Economic indicators favour either afforestation or intense pasturing. Both Mestizo and indigenous Saraguro settlers are more inclined to opt for afforestation.

  13. Afforestation or intense pasturing improve the ecological and economic value of abandoned tropical farmlands

    PubMed Central

    Knoke, Thomas; Bendix, Jörg; Pohle, Perdita; Hamer, Ute; Hildebrandt, Patrick; Roos, Kristin; Gerique, Andrés; Sandoval, María L.; Breuer, Lutz; Tischer, Alexander; Silva, Brenner; Calvas, Baltazar; Aguirre, Nikolay; Castro, Luz M.; Windhorst, David; Weber, Michael; Stimm, Bernd; Günter, Sven; Palomeque, Ximena; Mora, Julio; Mosandl, Reinhard; Beck, Erwin

    2014-01-01

    Increasing demands for livelihood resources in tropical rural areas have led to progressive clearing of biodiverse natural forests. Restoration of abandoned farmlands could counter this process. However, as aims and modes of restoration differ in their ecological and socio-economic value, the assessment of achievable ecosystem functions and benefits requires holistic investigation. Here we combine the results from multidisciplinary research for a unique assessment based on a normalization of 23 ecological, economic and social indicators for four restoration options in the tropical Andes of Ecuador. A comparison of the outcomes among afforestation with native alder or exotic pine, pasture restoration with either low-input or intense management and the abandoned status quo shows that both variants of afforestation and intense pasture use improve the ecological value, but low-input pasture does not. Economic indicators favour either afforestation or intense pasturing. Both Mestizo and indigenous Saraguro settlers are more inclined to opt for afforestation. PMID:25425182

  14. Afforestation or intense pasturing improve the ecological and economic value of abandoned tropical farmlands.

    PubMed

    Knoke, Thomas; Bendix, Jörg; Pohle, Perdita; Hamer, Ute; Hildebrandt, Patrick; Roos, Kristin; Gerique, Andrés; Sandoval, María L; Breuer, Lutz; Tischer, Alexander; Silva, Brenner; Calvas, Baltazar; Aguirre, Nikolay; Castro, Luz M; Windhorst, David; Weber, Michael; Stimm, Bernd; Günter, Sven; Palomeque, Ximena; Mora, Julio; Mosandl, Reinhard; Beck, Erwin

    2014-01-01

    Increasing demands for livelihood resources in tropical rural areas have led to progressive clearing of biodiverse natural forests. Restoration of abandoned farmlands could counter this process. However, as aims and modes of restoration differ in their ecological and socio-economic value, the assessment of achievable ecosystem functions and benefits requires holistic investigation. Here we combine the results from multidisciplinary research for a unique assessment based on a normalization of 23 ecological, economic and social indicators for four restoration options in the tropical Andes of Ecuador. A comparison of the outcomes among afforestation with native alder or exotic pine, pasture restoration with either low-input or intense management and the abandoned status quo shows that both variants of afforestation and intense pasture use improve the ecological value, but low-input pasture does not. Economic indicators favour either afforestation or intense pasturing. Both Mestizo and indigenous Saraguro settlers are more inclined to opt for afforestation. PMID:25425182

  15. Merging economics and epidemiology to improve the prediction and management of infectious disease.

    PubMed

    Perrings, Charles; Castillo-Chavez, Carlos; Chowell, Gerardo; Daszak, Peter; Fenichel, Eli P; Finnoff, David; Horan, Richard D; Kilpatrick, A Marm; Kinzig, Ann P; Kuminoff, Nicolai V; Levin, Simon; Morin, Benjamin; Smith, Katherine F; Springborn, Michael

    2014-12-01

    Mathematical epidemiology, one of the oldest and richest areas in mathematical biology, has significantly enhanced our understanding of how pathogens emerge, evolve, and spread. Classical epidemiological models, the standard for predicting and managing the spread of infectious disease, assume that contacts between susceptible and infectious individuals depend on their relative frequency in the population. The behavioral factors that underpin contact rates are not generally addressed. There is, however, an emerging a class of models that addresses the feedbacks between infectious disease dynamics and the behavioral decisions driving host contact. Referred to as "economic epidemiology" or "epidemiological economics," the approach explores the determinants of decisions about the number and type of contacts made by individuals, using insights and methods from economics. We show how the approach has the potential both to improve predictions of the course of infectious disease, and to support development of novel approaches to infectious disease management.

  16. Condensing economizers for efficiency improvement and emissions control in industrial boilers

    SciTech Connect

    Butcher, T.A.; Litzke, W.L.; Schulze, K.; Bailey, R.

    1996-06-01

    Condensing economizers recover sensible and latent heat from boiler flue gas, leading to marked improvements in thermal efficiency. This paper summarizes the current commercial status and continuing development efforts with one type of condensing economizer. In this design Teflon{reg_sign} covered tubes and enclosure walls are used to handle the corrosive condensate. Flue gas flows around the tubes and feed water, being heated, flows through the inside. In addition to improving thermal efficiency, condensing economizers can also be used to reduce particulate emissions primarily by inertial impaction of particles on tube surfaces, water droplets, and added impactors. Collected particles are then removed with condensate. Water sprays directly on the tubes can be used to enhance particle capture. With coal-firing, tests have shown particle removal efficiencies as high as 98%. To enhance the emissions control potential of condensing economizer technology a two-stage economizer system concept has been developed. Two heat exchanger modules are used. The first is a downflow design and recovers primarily sensible heat from the flue gas. The second is upflow and recovers mostly latent heat. Condensate is collected in a transition plenum between the two stages. This configuration, termed the Integrated Flue Gas Treatment System, provides great flexibility for implementing emissions reduction strategies. Particulate emissions can be reduced without impacting sensible heat recovery by recirculating collected condensate to spray nozzles at the top of the second stage heat exchanger. In tests at BNL with heavy oil firing, particulate reductions over 90% and final emission rates on the order of.005 lb/MMBtu are achieved. Adding sorbents to the recirculated condensate reduces sulfur dioxide emissions and SO{sub 2} removal efficiencies over 95% are achieved. Also, condensing economizers show great potential for the removal of certain air toxics such as mercury and nickel.

  17. Energy and women's economic empowerment: Rethinking the benefits of improved cookstove use in rural India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seaward, James Nicholas

    International development organizations have recently ramped up efforts to promote the use of improved cookstoves (ICS) in developing countries, aiming to reduce the harmful environmental and public health impacts of the burning of biomass for cooking and heating. I hypothesize that ICS use also has additional benefits---economic and social benefits---that can contribute to women's economic empowerment in the developing world. To explore the relationship between ICS use and women's economic empowerment, I use Ordinary Least Squares and Logit models based on data from the India Human Development Survey (IHDS) to analyze differences between women living in households that use ICS and those living in homes that use traditional cookstoves. My regression results reveal that ICS use has a statistically significant and negative effect on the amount of time women and girls spend on fuel collection and a statistically significant and positive effect on the likelihood of women's participation in side businesses, but does not have a statistically significant effect on the likelihood of lost productivity. My analysis shows promise that in addition to health and environmental benefits, fuel-efficient cooking technologies can also have social and economic impacts that are especially beneficial to women. It is my hope that the analysis provided in this paper will be used to further the dialogue about the importance of women's access to modern energy services in the fight to improve women's living standards in the developing world.

  18. Cryptic diversity and habitat partitioning in an economically important aphid species complex.

    PubMed

    Savory, F R; Ramakrishnan, U

    2015-03-01

    Cardamom Bushy Dwarf Virus (CBDV) is an aphid-borne nanovirus which infects large cardamom, Amomum subulatum (Zingiberaceae family), in the Himalayan foothills of Northeast India, Nepal and Bhutan. Two aphid species have been reported to transmit CBDV, including Pentalonia nigronervosa and Micromyzus kalimpongensis (also described as Pentalonia kalimpongensis). However, P. nigronervosa was recently split into two species which exhibit different host plant affiliations. Whilst P. nigronervosa primarily feeds on banana plants, Pentaloniacaladii (previously considered a 'form' of P. nigronervosa) typically feeds on plants belonging to the Araceae, Heliconiaceae and Zingiberaceae families. This raises the possibility that CBDV vectors that were originally described as P. nigronervosa correspond to P. caladii. Accurate identification of vector species is important for understanding disease dynamics and for implementing management strategies. However, closely related species can be difficult to distinguish based on morphological characteristics. In this study, we used molecular markers (two mitochondrial loci and one nuclear locus) and Bayesian phylogenetic analyses to identify aphid specimens collected from 148 CBDV infected plants at a range of locations and elevations throughout Sikkim and the Darjeeling district of West Bengal (Northeast India). Our results revealed the presence of a diversity of lineages, comprising up to six distinct species in at least two related genera. These included the three species mentioned above, an unidentified Pentalonia species and two lineages belonging to an unknown genus. Surprisingly, P. caladii was only detected on a single infected plant, indicating that this species may not play an important role in CBDV transmission dynamics. Distinct elevation distributions were observed for the different species, demonstrating that the community composition of aphids which feed on large cardamom plants changes across an elevation gradient

  19. Cryptic diversity and habitat partitioning in an economically important aphid species complex.

    PubMed

    Savory, F R; Ramakrishnan, U

    2015-03-01

    Cardamom Bushy Dwarf Virus (CBDV) is an aphid-borne nanovirus which infects large cardamom, Amomum subulatum (Zingiberaceae family), in the Himalayan foothills of Northeast India, Nepal and Bhutan. Two aphid species have been reported to transmit CBDV, including Pentalonia nigronervosa and Micromyzus kalimpongensis (also described as Pentalonia kalimpongensis). However, P. nigronervosa was recently split into two species which exhibit different host plant affiliations. Whilst P. nigronervosa primarily feeds on banana plants, Pentaloniacaladii (previously considered a 'form' of P. nigronervosa) typically feeds on plants belonging to the Araceae, Heliconiaceae and Zingiberaceae families. This raises the possibility that CBDV vectors that were originally described as P. nigronervosa correspond to P. caladii. Accurate identification of vector species is important for understanding disease dynamics and for implementing management strategies. However, closely related species can be difficult to distinguish based on morphological characteristics. In this study, we used molecular markers (two mitochondrial loci and one nuclear locus) and Bayesian phylogenetic analyses to identify aphid specimens collected from 148 CBDV infected plants at a range of locations and elevations throughout Sikkim and the Darjeeling district of West Bengal (Northeast India). Our results revealed the presence of a diversity of lineages, comprising up to six distinct species in at least two related genera. These included the three species mentioned above, an unidentified Pentalonia species and two lineages belonging to an unknown genus. Surprisingly, P. caladii was only detected on a single infected plant, indicating that this species may not play an important role in CBDV transmission dynamics. Distinct elevation distributions were observed for the different species, demonstrating that the community composition of aphids which feed on large cardamom plants changes across an elevation gradient

  20. Surveying Rubisco Diversity and Temperature Response to Improve Crop Photosynthetic Efficiency1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Andralojc, P. John

    2016-01-01

    The threat to global food security of stagnating yields and population growth makes increasing crop productivity a critical goal over the coming decades. One key target for improving crop productivity and yields is increasing the efficiency of photosynthesis. Central to photosynthesis is Rubisco, which is a critical but often rate-limiting component. Here, we present full Rubisco catalytic properties measured at three temperatures for 75 plants species representing both crops and undomesticated plants from diverse climates. Some newly characterized Rubiscos were naturally “better” compared to crop enzymes and have the potential to improve crop photosynthetic efficiency. The temperature response of the various catalytic parameters was largely consistent across the diverse range of species, though absolute values showed significant variation in Rubisco catalysis, even between closely related species. An analysis of residue differences among the species characterized identified a number of candidate amino acid substitutions that will aid in advancing engineering of improved Rubisco in crop systems. This study provides new insights on the range of Rubisco catalysis and temperature response present in nature, and provides new information to include in models from leaf to canopy and ecosystem scale. PMID:27342312

  1. The economic and environmental value of genetic improvements in fattening pigs: An integrated dynamic model approach.

    PubMed

    Niemi, J K; Sevón-Aimonen, M-L; Stygar, A H; Partanen, K

    2015-08-01

    The selection of animals for improved performance affects the profitability of pig fattening and has environmental consequences. The goal of this paper was to examine how changes in genetic and market parameters impact the biophysical (feeding patterns, timing of slaughter, nitrogen excretion) and economic (return per pig space unit) results describing pig fattening in a Finnish farm. The analysis can be viewed as focusing on terminal line breeding goals. An integrated model using recursive stochastic dynamic programming and a biological pig growth model was used to estimate biophysical results and economic values. Combining these models allowed us to provide more accurate estimates for the value of genetic improvement and, thus, provide better feedback to animal breeding programs than the traditional approach, which is based on fixed management patterns. Besides the benchmark scenario, the results were simulated for 5 other scenarios. In each scenario, genotype was improved regarding daily growth potential, carcass lean meat content, or the parameters of the Gompertz growth curve (maturing rate [], adult weight of protein [α], and adult weight of lipid mass []). The change in each parameter was equal to approximately 1 SD genetic improvement (ceteris paribus). Increasing , , daily growth potential, or carcass lean meat content increased the return on pig space unit by €12.60, €7.60, €4.10, or €2.90 per year, respectively, whereas an increase in decreased the return by €3.10. The genetic improvement in and resulted in the highest decrease in nitrogen excretion calculated in total or per kilogram of carcass gain but only under the optimal feeding pattern. Simulated changes in the Gompertz growth function parameters imply greater changes in ADG and lean meat content than changes in scenarios focusing on improving ADG and lean meat content directly. The economic value of genetic improvements as well as the quantity of nitrogen excreted during the fattening

  2. The economic and environmental value of genetic improvements in fattening pigs: An integrated dynamic model approach.

    PubMed

    Niemi, J K; Sevón-Aimonen, M-L; Stygar, A H; Partanen, K

    2015-08-01

    The selection of animals for improved performance affects the profitability of pig fattening and has environmental consequences. The goal of this paper was to examine how changes in genetic and market parameters impact the biophysical (feeding patterns, timing of slaughter, nitrogen excretion) and economic (return per pig space unit) results describing pig fattening in a Finnish farm. The analysis can be viewed as focusing on terminal line breeding goals. An integrated model using recursive stochastic dynamic programming and a biological pig growth model was used to estimate biophysical results and economic values. Combining these models allowed us to provide more accurate estimates for the value of genetic improvement and, thus, provide better feedback to animal breeding programs than the traditional approach, which is based on fixed management patterns. Besides the benchmark scenario, the results were simulated for 5 other scenarios. In each scenario, genotype was improved regarding daily growth potential, carcass lean meat content, or the parameters of the Gompertz growth curve (maturing rate [], adult weight of protein [α], and adult weight of lipid mass []). The change in each parameter was equal to approximately 1 SD genetic improvement (ceteris paribus). Increasing , , daily growth potential, or carcass lean meat content increased the return on pig space unit by €12.60, €7.60, €4.10, or €2.90 per year, respectively, whereas an increase in decreased the return by €3.10. The genetic improvement in and resulted in the highest decrease in nitrogen excretion calculated in total or per kilogram of carcass gain but only under the optimal feeding pattern. Simulated changes in the Gompertz growth function parameters imply greater changes in ADG and lean meat content than changes in scenarios focusing on improving ADG and lean meat content directly. The economic value of genetic improvements as well as the quantity of nitrogen excreted during the fattening

  3. Current State of Economic Returns from Education in China's Ethnic Regions and Explorations into Ways of Improvement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lijun, Zhang; Fei, Wang

    2010-01-01

    Economic development and social progress in China's ethnic minority regions depend on improvements in population attributes brought about by education. Developing education in China's ethnic regions is a project of fundamental significance for realizing sustainable economic and social development in the ethnic regions. Improving the economic…

  4. Language Diversity & Practice in Higher Education: Can Discipline-Specific Language Instruction Improve Economics Learning Outcomes?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nguyen, Trien; Trimarchi, Angela; Williams, Julia

    2012-01-01

    In the field of second language acquisition, discipline-specific language instruction is becoming widely known as Content and Language Integrated Learning. This method includes any activity that involves teaching a subject in a second language for the purpose of teaching both the subject content and the language. Research has shown that this two…

  5. Improving the Diversity Climate in Academic Medicine: Faculty Perceptions as a Catalyst for Institutional Change

    PubMed Central

    Price, Eboni G.; Powe, Neil R.; Kern, David E.; Golden, Sherita Hill; Wand, Gary S.; Cooper, Lisa A.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose To assess perceptions of underrepresented minority (URM) and majority faculty physicians regarding an institution’s diversity climate, and to identify potential improvement strategies. Method The authors conducted a cross-sectional survey of tenure-track physicians at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine from June 1, 2004 to September 30, 2005; they measured faculty perceptions of bias in department/division operational activities, professional satisfaction, career networking, mentorship, and intentions to stay in academia, and they examined associations between race/ethnicity and faculty perceptions using multivariate logistic regression. Results Among 703 eligible faculty, 352 (50.1%) returned surveys. Fewer than one third of respondents reported experiences of bias in department/division activities; however, URM faculty were less likely than majority faculty to believe faculty recruitment is unbiased (21.1% versus 50.6%, P = .006). A minority of respondents were satisfied with institutional support for professional development. URM faculty were nearly four times less likely than majority faculty to report satisfaction with racial/ethnic diversity (12% versus 47.1%, P = .001) and three times less likely to believe networking included minorities (9.3% versus 32.6%, P = .014). There were no racial/ethnic differences in the quality of mentorship. More than 80% of respondents believed they would be in academic medicine in five years. However, URM faculty were less likely to report they would be at their current institution in five years (42.6% versus 70.5%, P = .004). Conclusions Perceptions of the institution’s diversity climate were poor for most physician faculty and were worse for URM faculty, highlighting the need for more transparent and diversity-sensitive recruitment, promotion, and networking policies/practices. PMID:19116484

  6. Improved techniques for fluid diversion in oil recovery. Second annual report, October 1, 1993--September 30, 1994

    SciTech Connect

    Seright, R.S.

    1995-03-01

    This project is directed at reducing water production and increasing oil recovery efficiency. Today, the cost of water disposal is typically between $0.25 and $0.50 per bbl. Therefore, there is a tremendous economic incentive to reduce water production if that can be accomplished without sacrificing hydrocarbon production. Environmental considerations also provide a significant incentive to reduce water production during oilfield operations. This three-year project has two technical objectives. The first objective is to compare the effectiveness of gels in fluid diversion (water shutoff) with those of other types of processes. Several different types of fluid-diversion processes are being compared, including those using gels, foams, emulsions, and particulates. The ultimate goals of these comparisons are to (1) establish which of these processes are most effective in a given application and (2) determine whether aspects of one process can be combined with those of other processes to improve performance. Analyses and experiments are being performed to verify which materials are the most effective in entering and blocking high-permeability zones. The second objective of the project is to identify the mechanisms by which materials (particularly gels) selectively reduce permeability to water more than to oil. Topics covered in this report include (1) comparisons of the use of gels, foams, emulsions, and particulates as blocking agents; (2) propagation of aluminum-citrate-HPAM gels through porous rock; (3) gel properties in fractured systems; (4) gel placement in unfractured anisotropic flow systems; and (5) an investigation of why some gels can reduce water permeability more than oil permeability.

  7. Conditional economic incentives to improve HIV treatment adherence: literature review and theoretical considerations

    PubMed Central

    Galárraga, Omar; Genberg, Becky L.; Martin, Rosemarie A.; Laws, M. Barton; Wilson, Ira B.

    2013-01-01

    We present selected theoretical issues regarding conditional economic incentives (CEI) for HIV treatment adherence. High HIV treatment adherence is essential not only to improve individual health for persons living with HIV, but also to reduce transmission. The incentives literature spans several decades and various disciplines, thus we selectively point out useful concepts from economics, psychology and HIV clinical practice to elucidate the complex interaction between socio-economic issues, psychological perspectives and optimal treatment adherence. Appropriately-implemented CEI can help patients improve their adherence to HIV treatment in the short-term, while the incentives are in place. However, more research is needed to uncover mechanisms that can increase habit formation or maintenance effects in the longer-term. We suggest some potentially fruitful avenues for future research in this area, including the use of concepts from self-determination theory. This general framework may have implications for related research among disadvantaged communities with high rates of HIV/AIDS infection. PMID:23370833

  8. Conditional economic incentives to improve HIV treatment adherence: literature review and theoretical considerations.

    PubMed

    Galárraga, Omar; Genberg, Becky L; Martin, Rosemarie A; Barton Laws, M; Wilson, Ira B

    2013-09-01

    We present selected theoretical issues regarding conditional economic incentives (CEI) for HIV treatment adherence. High HIV treatment adherence is essential not only to improve individual health for persons living with HIV, but also to reduce transmission. The incentives literature spans several decades and various disciplines, thus we selectively point out useful concepts from economics, psychology and HIV clinical practice to elucidate the complex interaction between socio-economic issues, psychological perspectives and optimal treatment adherence. Appropriately-implemented CEI can help patients improve their adherence to HIV treatment in the short-term, while the incentives are in place. However, more research is needed to uncover mechanisms that can increase habit formation or maintenance effects in the longer-term. We suggest some potentially fruitful avenues for future research in this area, including the use of concepts from self-determination theory. This general framework may have implications for related research among disadvantaged communities with high rates of HIV/AIDS infection. PMID:23370833

  9. An administrative concern: Science teachers' instructional efficacy beliefs regarding racially, culturally, economically, and linguistically diverse student populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuck Bonner, Natalie Christine

    A teacher's sense of {instructional} efficacy has been considered a critical variable in student academic performance. Researchers Tschannen-Moran and Hoy Woolfolk (2001, p.783) defined teachers' {instructional} efficacy as a teacher's judgment of his or her capabilities to bring about desired outcomes of student engagement and learning, even among those students who may be difficult or unmotivated. There has been a substantial amount of research which reveals a strong correlation among teacher efficacy, teaching performance, and student achievement (Goddard & Goddard, et.al., 2000; Hackett; Hackett, 1995; Pajares, 1997 as cited in Villereal, 2005). This research study explored the content area of science and teacher's personal perception of their competency level in teaching science to all learners regardless of socio-economic, ethnicity/race or gender for grade levels Pre-K to 12. Lewthwaite states that a science teacher's personal teacher attributes or intrinsic factors such as science teaching self-efficacy, professional science knowledge, science teaching, instructional methodologies, interest in science, and motivation to teach science are critical dimensions and noted barriers in the delivery of science programs on elementary level campuses (Lewthwaite, Stableford & Fisher, 2001). This study focused on teacher instructional efficacy issues which may affect diverse learners' classroom and state-mandated assessment academic performance outcomes. A SPSS analysis of data was obtained from the following teacher survey instruments: The Bandura Teacher Efficacy Scale, the SEBEST, and the SETAKIST. Research findings revealed that a majority of science teachers surveyed believe they can effectively teach learners of diverse backgrounds, but responded with a sense of lower efficaciousness in teaching English Language Learners. There was also a statistically significant difference found between a state science organization and a national science organization

  10. Lathyrus diversity: available resources with relevance to crop improvement – L. sativus and L. cicera as case studies

    PubMed Central

    Vaz Patto, M. C.; Rubiales, D.

    2014-01-01

    Background The Lathyrus genus includes 160 species, some of which have economic importance as food, fodder and ornamental crops (mainly L. sativus, L. cicera and L. odoratus, respectively) and are cultivated in >1·5 Mha worldwide. However, in spite of their well-recognized robustness and potential as a source of calories and protein for populations in drought-prone and marginal areas, cultivation is in decline and there is a high risk of genetic erosion. Scope In this review, current and past taxonomic treatments of the Lathyrus genus are assessed and its current status is examined together with future prospects for germplasm conservation, characterization and utilization. A particular emphasis is placed on the importance of diversity analysis for breeding of L. sativus and L. cicera. Conclusions Efforts for improvement of L. sativus and L. cicera should concentrate on the development of publicly available joint core collections, and on high-resolution genotyping. This will be critical for permitting decentralized phenotyping. Such a co-ordinated international effort should result in more efficient and faster breeding approaches, which are particularly needed for these neglected, underutilized Lathyrus species. PMID:24623333

  11. Socio-economic aspects of improved sanitation in slums: a review.

    PubMed

    Isunju, J B; Schwartz, K; Schouten, M A; Johnson, W P; van Dijk, M P

    2011-06-01

    This socio-economic review provides an overview of the sanitation crisis in slum areas, and re-emphasizes the importance of sanitation. It highlights a lack of recognition of actual drivers for sanitation improvements, and the complexities in the provision of sanitation services in the context of urban slums with a mix of tenants and landlords. It elaborates how the drivers of demand for sanitation outlined in contemporary research are not universal but are rather context specific. The authors point out specific knowledge gaps for future research; for example, the need to establish a scientific basis for context-specific drivers of demand for sanitation improvements in slums, and a better understanding of associated complexities in order to set boundary conditions for achieving desired improvements. PMID:21616514

  12. Quality of Reporting in Economic Evaluations of Interventions to Prevent Dental Caries Needs Improvement

    PubMed Central

    Griffin, Susan O.; Jones, Kari

    2016-01-01

    . Conclusions The authors conclude that the quality of reporting in economic evaluations of interventions to prevent dental caries needs to be improved. PMID:23407213

  13. Are Economic Development and Education Improvement Associated with Participation in Transnational Terrorism?

    PubMed

    Elbakidze, L; Jin, Y H

    2015-08-01

    Using transnational terrorism data from 1980 to 2000, this study empirically examines the relationships between frequency of participation in transnational terrorism acts and economic development and education improvement. We find an inverse U-shaped association between the frequency of various nationals acting as perpetrators in transnational terrorism acts and per capita income in their respective home countries. As per capita incomes increase from relatively low levels, frequencies of participation in transnational terrorism increase. However, at sufficiently higher levels of per capita income, further increase in per capita income is negatively associated with the rate of participation in transnational terrorism. Education improvement from elementary to secondary is positively correlated with frequency of participation in transnational terrorism events, whereas further improvement from secondary to tertiary level is negatively correlated with participation in transnational terrorism. We also find that citizens of countries with greater openness to international trade, lower degree of income inequality, greater economic freedom, larger proportion of population with tertiary education, and less religious prevalence participate in transnational terrorism events less frequently.

  14. Improvement of phase diversity algorithm for non-common path calibration in extreme AO context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robert, Clélia; Fusco, Thierry; Sauvage, Jean-François; Mugnier, Laurent

    2008-07-01

    Exoplanet direct imaging with a ground-based telescope needs a very high performance adaptive optics (AO) system, so-called eXtreme AO (XAO), a coronagraph device, and a smart imaging process. One limitation of AO system in operation remains the Non Common Path Aberrations (NCPA). To achieve the ultimate XAO performance, these aberrations have to be measured with a dedicated wavefront sensor placed in the imaging camera focal plane, and then pre-compensated using the AO closed loop process. In any events, the pre-compensation should minimize the aberrations at the coronagraph focal plane mask. An efficient way for the NCPA measurement is the phase diversity technique. A pixel-wise approach is well-suited to estimate NCPA on large pupils and subsequent projection on the deformable mirror with Cartesian geometry. However it calls for a careful regularization for optimal results. The weight of the regularization is written in close-form for un-supervised tuning. The accuracy of NCPA pre-compensation is below 8 nm for a wide range of conditions. Point-by-point phase estimation improves the accuracy of the Phase Diversity method. The algorithm is validated in simulation and experimentally. It will be implemented in SAXO, the XAO system of the second generation VLT instrument: SPHERE.

  15. A review of approaches to improve participation of culturally and linguistically diverse populations in clinical trials.

    PubMed

    Hughson, Jo-Anne; Woodward-Kron, Robyn; Parker, Anna; Hajek, John; Bresin, Agnese; Knoch, Ute; Phan, Tuong; Story, David

    2016-01-01

    The under-representation of culturally and linguistically diverse participants in clinical trials is an ongoing concern for medical researchers and the community. The aim of this review is to examine the complex issue of recruiting culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) older people to medical research and to examine responses to these issues. The review focuses on (1) trends in the existing literature on barriers to and strategies for recruiting CALD and older people to clinical research, (2) issues with informed consent for CALD populations, and (3) the efficacy of innovative approaches, including approaches incorporating multimedia in research and consent processes. The literature indicates that predominant barriers to greater involvement of CALD patients in clinical trials are communication, including literacy and health literacy considerations; English language competence; and cultural factors in the research setting such as mistrust of consent processes, as well as considerable practical and logistical barriers, including mobility considerations. Some evidence exists that incorporating multimedia resources into the informed consent process can improve patient understanding and is preferred by patients, yet these findings are inconclusive. A multi-methodological approach, including the use of culturally and linguistically sensitive multimedia tools, may help address the issue of low inclusion of CALD groups in clinical research. Researcher education needs to be taken into account to address preconceptions about CALD resistance to research participation and to raise awareness of cultural concerns in regard to research participation.

  16. Climate change and environmental water reallocation in the Murray-Darling Basin: Impacts on flows, diversions and economic returns to irrigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirby, J. M.; Connor, J.; Ahmad, M. D.; Gao, L.; Mainuddin, M.

    2014-10-01

    Increasing river environment degradation from historical growth in withdrawal is leading to reallocation of water from irrigation in many basins. We examine how potential reduction in irrigation allocations under a newly enacted environmental water plan for the Murray Darling Basin in Australia, in combination with projected climate change, impact on flows, diversions and the economic returns to irrigation. We use an integrated hydrology-economics model capable of simulating the year-to-year variability of flows, diversions, and economic returns to model three levels of reallocation (2400, 2750 and 3200 GL) under the historical climate, and under a dry, a median and a wet climate change projection. Previous assessments of the reallocation plan do not address climate change impacts, nor the impact of year to year variability in flows on economic returns. The broad results of this analysis are that estimated river flows and diversions are more sensitive to the range of climate change projections than to the range of diversion reallocation scenarios considered. The projected median climate change more or less removes from flows the gains to the environment resulting from reallocation. Reallocations only in combination with no climate change, or climate change at the wetter end of the range of projections, will lead to flows greater than those experienced under the water management regime prior to reallocation. The reduction in economic returns to irrigation is less than the reduction in water available for irrigation: a 25% reduction in the annual average water availability is estimated to reduce the annual average gross value of irrigated agricultural production by about 10%. This is consistent with expectation of economic theory (since more marginal activities are reduced first) and also with observations of reduced water availability and returns in the recent drought in the Murray-Darling Basin. Irrigation returns vary less across the range of climate change

  17. Improving Diversity, Inclusion, and Representation in Radiology and Radiation Oncology Part 1: Why These Matter

    PubMed Central

    Lightfoote, Johnson B.; Fielding, Julia R.; Deville, Curtiland; Gunderman, Richard B.; Morgan, Gail N.; Pandharipande, Pari V.; Duerinckx, Andre J.; Wynn, Raymond B.; Macura, Katarzyna J.

    2015-01-01

    The ACR Commission for Women and General Diversity is committed to identifying barriers to a diverse physician workforce in radiology and radiation oncology (RRO), and to offering policy recommendations to overcome these barriers. In Part 1 of a 2-part position article from the commission, diversity as a concept and its dimensions of personality, character, ethnicity, biology, biography, and organization are introduced. Terms commonly used to describe diverse individuals and groups are reviewed. The history of diversity and inclusion in US society and health care are addressed. The post–Civil Rights Era evolution of diversity in medicine is delineated: Diversity 1.0, with basic awareness, nondiscrimination, and recruitment; Diversity 2.0, with appreciation of the value of diversity but inclusion as peripheral or in opposition to other goals; and Diversity 3.0, which integrates diversity and inclusion into core missions of organizations and their leadership, and leverages its potential for innovation and contribution. The current states of diversity and inclusion in RRO are reviewed in regard to gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender identity. The lack of representation and unchanged demographics in these fields relative to other medical specialties are explored. The business case for diversity is discussed, with examples of successful models and potential application to the health care industry in general and to RRO. The moral, ethical, and public health imperative for diversity is also highlighted. PMID:24993534

  18. Improving diversity, inclusion, and representation in radiology and radiation oncology part 1: why these matter.

    PubMed

    Lightfoote, Johnson B; Fielding, Julia R; Deville, Curtiland; Gunderman, Richard B; Morgan, Gail N; Pandharipande, Pari V; Duerinckx, Andre J; Wynn, Raymond B; Macura, Katarzyna J

    2014-07-01

    The ACR Commission for Women and General Diversity is committed to identifying barriers to a diverse physician workforce in radiology and radiation oncology (RRO), and to offering policy recommendations to overcome these barriers. In Part 1 of a 2-part position article from the commission, diversity as a concept and its dimensions of personality, character, ethnicity, biology, biography, and organization are introduced. Terms commonly used to describe diverse individuals and groups are reviewed. The history of diversity and inclusion in US society and health care are addressed. The post-Civil Rights Era evolution of diversity in medicine is delineated: Diversity 1.0, with basic awareness, nondiscrimination, and recruitment; Diversity 2.0, with appreciation of the value of diversity but inclusion as peripheral or in opposition to other goals; and Diversity 3.0, which integrates diversity and inclusion into core missions of organizations and their leadership, and leverages its potential for innovation and contribution. The current states of diversity and inclusion in RRO are reviewed in regard to gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender identity. The lack of representation and unchanged demographics in these fields relative to other medical specialties are explored. The business case for diversity is discussed, with examples of successful models and potential application to the health care industry in general and to RRO. The moral, ethical, and public health imperative for diversity is also highlighted.

  19. Improving utilization of and retention in PMTCT services: Can behavioral economics help?

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The most recent strategic call to action of the World Health Organization sets the elimination of pediatric HIV as a goal. While recent efforts have focused on building infrastructure and ensuring access to high-quality treatment, we must now turn our focus to the behavior change needed to eliminate vertical transmission. We make the case for the application of concepts from the field of behavioral economics to prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) programs to more effectively address demand-side issues of uptake and retention. Discussion We introduce five concepts from the field of behavioral economics and discuss their application to PMTCT programs: 1) Mentor mothers who come from similar circumstances as PMTCT patients can serve as social references who provide temporally salient modeling of utilization of services and adherence to treatment. 2) Economic incentives, like cell phone minutes or food vouchers, that reward adherence to PMTCT protocols leverage present bias, the observation that people are generally biased toward immediate versus future awards. 3) Default bias, our preference for the default option, is already being used in many countries in the form of opt-out testing, and could be expanded to all PMTCT programs. 4) We are hardwired to avoid loss more than to pursue an equivalent gain. PMTCT programs can take advantage of loss aversion through the use of commitment contracts that incentivize mothers to return to the clinic in order to avoid both reputational and financial loss. Summary Eliminating vertical transmission of HIV is an ambitious goal. To close the remaining gap, innovations are needed to address demand for PMTCT services. Behavioral economics offers a set of tools that can be engineered into PMTCT programs to increase uptake and improve retention with minimal investment. PMID:24112440

  20. Economic Insights into Providing Access to Improved Groundwater Sources in Remote, Low-Resource Areas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abramson, A.; Lazarovitch, N.; Adar, E.

    2013-12-01

    Groundwater is often the most or only feasible drinking water source in remote, low-resource areas. Yet the economics of its development have not been systematically outlined. We applied CBARWI (Cost-Benefit Analysis for Remote Water Improvements), a recently developed Decision Support System, to investigate the economic, physical and management factors related to the costs and benefits of non-networked groundwater supply in remote areas. Synthetic profiles of community water services (n = 17,962), defined across 14 parameters' values and ranges relevant to remote areas, were imputed into the decision framework, and the parameter effects on economic outcomes were investigated through regression analysis (Table 1). Several approaches were included for financing the improvements, after Abramson et al, 2011: willingness-to -pay (WTP), -borrow (WTB) and -work (WTW) in community irrigation (';water-for-work'). We found that low-cost groundwater development approaches are almost 7 times more cost-effective than conventional boreholes fitted with handpumps. The costs of electric, submersible borehole pumps are comparable only when providing expanded water supplies, and off-grid communities pay significantly more for such expansions. In our model, new source construction is less cost-effective than improvement of existing wells, but necessary for expanding access to isolated households. The financing approach significantly impacts the feasibility of demand-driven cost recovery; in our investigation, benefit exceeds cost in 16, 32 and 48% of water service configurations financed by WTP, WTB and WTW, respectively. Regressions of total cost (R2 = 0.723) and net benefit under WTW (R2 = 0.829) along with analysis of output distributions indicate that parameters determining the profitability of irrigation are different from those determining costs and other measures of net benefit. These findings suggest that the cost-benefit outcomes associated with groundwater-based water

  1. Economic Barriers To Improvement Of Human Health Associated With Wastewater Irrigation In The Mezquital Valley, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamagata, H.; Sedlak, D. L.

    2008-12-01

    To improve public health, the United Nations' Johannesburg Summit on Sustainable Development in 2002 set Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) of reducing by half the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and sanitation by 2015. The Mezquital Valley of Mexico is one of the places suffering serious human health problems such as ascariasis due to agricultural irrigation with untreated wastewater discharged by Mexico City. Despite the existence of serious health problems, wastewater treatment has not been installed due to economic barriers: the agricultural benefit of nutrients in the wastewater and cost of building and operating wastewater treatment plants. To develop solutions to this problem, the human health damage and the benefits of nutrient input were evaluated. The health impact caused by untreated wastewater reuse in the Mezquital Valley was estimated to be about 14 DALYs (disability-adjusted life year) per 100,000, which was 2.8 times higher than the DALYs lost by ascariasis in Mexico in 2002 estimated by WHO. The economic damage of the health impact was evaluated at 77,000 /year using willingness-to-pay (WTP) for reducing DALYs. The value of nutrient inputs (nitrogen and phosphorus) due to reuse of untreated wastewater was evaluated at 33 million /year using fertilizer prices. Therefore, attempts to decrease public health problems associated with reuse in the Mezquital Valley need to address losses of economic benefits associated with nutrients in sewage. In 2007, the Mexican Government announced plans to install wastewater treatment plants in this area. Although nutrient inputs in irrigated water is expected to decrease by 33% due to the wastewater treatment, farmers in the Mezquital Valley would still benefit from improved public health in the community and increases of crop values due to the ability to grow raw-eaten vegetables.

  2. An economic decision framework using modeling for improving aquifer remediation design

    SciTech Connect

    James, B.R.; Gwo, J.P.; Toran, L.E.

    1995-11-01

    Reducing cost is a critical challenge facing environmental remediation today. One of the most effective ways of reducing costs is to improve decision-making. This can range from choosing more cost- effective remediation alternatives (for example, determining whether a groundwater contamination plume should be remediated or not) to improving data collection (for example, determining when data collection should stoop). Uncertainty in site conditions presents a major challenge for effective decision-making. We present a framework for increasing the effectiveness of remedial design decision-making at groundwater contamination sites where there is uncertainty in many parameters that affect remediation design. The objective is to provide an easy-to-use economic framework for making remediation decisions. The presented framework is used to 1) select the best remedial design from a suite of possible ones, 2) estimate if additional data collection is cost-effective, and 3) determine the most important parameters to be sampled. The framework is developed by combining elements from Latin-Hypercube simulation of contaminant transport, economic risk-cost-benefit analysis, and Regional Sensitivity Analysis (RSA).

  3. IMPROVED TUBULARS FOR BETTER ECONOMICS IN DEEP GAS WELL DRILLING USING MICROWAVE TECHNOLOGY

    SciTech Connect

    Dinesh Agrawal

    2004-01-01

    The main objective of the research program has been to improve the rate-of-penetration in deep hostile environments by improving the life cycle and performance of coiled-tubing, an important component of a deep well drilling system for oil and gas exploration, by utilizing the latest developments in the microwave materials technology. This is being accomplished by developing an efficient and economically viable continuous microwave process to sinter continuously formed/extruded steel powder for the manufacture of seamless coiled tubing and other tubular products. The entire program has been spread over three phases with the following goals: Phase I--Demonstration of the feasibility concept of continuous microwave sintering process for tubular steel products. Phase II--Design, building and testing of a prototype microwave system which shall be combined with a continuous extruder for steel tubular objects. Phase III--Execution of the plan for commercialization of the technology by one of the industrial partners. The criteria for the success of the program is based on the performance of coiled tubing made by the microwave process. It is expected that this product will have superior quality and performance to the standard product, and will be economically viable.

  4. SEASAT economic assessment. Volume 9: Ports and harbors case study and generalization. [economic benefits of SEASAT satellites to harbors and shipping industries through improved weather forecasting

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1975-01-01

    This case study and generalization quantify benefits made possible through improved weather forecasting resulting from the integration of SEASAT data into local weather forecasts. The major source of avoidable economic losses to shipping from inadequate weather forecasting data is shown to be dependent on local precipitation forecasting. The ports of Philadelphia and Boston were selected for study.

  5. Improved techniques for fluid diversion in oil recovery. First annual report

    SciTech Connect

    Seright, R.S.

    1993-12-01

    This three-year project has two general objectives. The first objective is to compare the effectiveness of gels in fluid diversion with those of other types of processes. Several different types of fluid-diversion processes are being compared, including those using gels, foams, emulsions, and particulates. The ultimate goals of these comparisons are to (1) establish which of these processes are most effective in a given application, and (2) determine whether aspects of one process can be combined with those of other processes to improve performance. Analyses and experiments are being performed to verify which materials are the most effective in entering and blocking high-permeability zones. Another objective of the project is to identify the mechanisms by which materials (particularly gels) selectively reduce permeability to water more than to oil. This report describes work performed during the first year of the project. Following the introduction, Chapters 2 through 5 present several surveys concerning field applications of gel treatments. Based on the results of the surveys, guidelines are proposed in Chapter 5 for the selection of candidates for gel treatments (both injection wells and production wells). Chapters 6, 7, 8, and 11 discuss theoretical work that was performed during the project. Chapter 6 examines whether Hall plots indicated selectivity during gelant placement. Chapter 7 discusses several important theoretical aspects of gel treatments in production wells with water-coning problems. Chapter 8 considers exploitation of density differences during gelant placement. Chapter 11 presents a preliminary consideration of the use of precipitates as blocking agents. Chapters 9 and 10 detail the experimental work for the project. Chapter 9 describes an experimental investigation of gelant placement in fractured systems. Chapter 10 describes experiments that probe the mechanisms for disproportionate permeability reduction by gels.

  6. Improved Tubulars for Better Economics in Deep Gas Well Drilling using Microwave Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Dinesh Agrawal; Paul Gigl; Mark Hunt; Mahlon Dennis

    2007-07-31

    The main objective of the entire research program has been to improve the rate-of-penetration in deep hostile environments by improving the life cycle and performance of coiled-tubing, an important component of a deep well drilling system for oil and gas exploration, by utilizing the latest developments in the microwave materials technology. Based on the results of the Phase I and insurmountable difficulties faced in the extrusion and de-waxing processes, the approach of achieving the goals of the program was slightly changed in the Phase II in which an approach of microwave sintering combined with Cold Isostatic Press (CIP) and joining (by induction or microwave) has been adopted. This process can be developed into a semicontinuous sintering process if the CIP can produce parts fast enough to match the microwave sintering rates. The main objective of the Phase II research program is to demonstrate the potential to economically manufacture microwave processed coiled tubing with improved performance for extended useful life under hostile coiled tubing drilling conditions. After the completion of the Phase II, it is concluded that scale up and sintering of a thin wall common O.D. size tubing that is widely used in the market is still to be proved and further experimentation and refinement of the sintering process is needed in Phase III. Actual manufacturing capability of microwave sintered, industrial quality, full length tubing will most likely require several million dollars of investment.

  7. Improved Tubulars for Better Economics in Deep Gas Well Drilling Using Microwave Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Dinesh Agrawal

    2006-09-30

    The main objective of the entire research program has been to improve the rate-of-penetration in deep hostile environments by improving the life cycle and performance of coiled-tubing, an important component of a deep well drilling system for oil and gas exploration, by utilizing the latest developments in the microwave materials technology. Based on the results of the Phase I and insurmountable difficulties faced in the extrusion and de-waxing processes, the approach of achieving the goals of the program was slightly changed in the Phase II in which an approach of microwave sintering combined with Cold Isostatic Press (CIP) and joining (by induction or microwave) has been adopted. This process can be developed into a semicontinuous sintering process if the CIP can produce parts fast enough to match the microwave sintering rates. The main objective of the Phase II research program is to demonstrate the potential to economically manufacture microwave processed coiled tubing with improved performance for extended useful life under hostile coiled tubing drilling conditions. After the completion of the Phase II, it is concluded that scale up and sintering of a thin wall common O.D. size tubing that is widely used in the market is still to be proved and further experimentation and refinement of the sintering process is needed in Phase III. Actual manufacturing capability of microwave sintered, industrial quality, full length tubing will most likely require several million dollars of investment.

  8. Improving efficiencies in pharmaceutical distribution channels using the economic order quantity model.

    PubMed

    Sullivan, D L; Schommer, J C

    1993-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate empirically the potential cost savings to a pharmaceutical wholesaler using the Economic Order Quantity (EOQ) model. This model allows for calculating the order quantity that minimizes both ordering and holding costs. A regional pharmaceutical wholesaler was selected for a case analysis study using the EOQ model. Eleven brand name products were randomly selected for the analysis. The average yearly cost savings using EOQ was $31.92 per product. The potential yearly cost savings based on 8500 brand name stock-keeping units was $271,320. Using EOQ can therefore assist pharmaceutical wholesalers in minimizing holding and ordering costs and improve efficiency for pharmaceutical distribution channels.

  9. Diversity of Students' background as a source for improving teaching Physics at a Liberal Arts Institution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agrest, Mikhail

    2001-11-01

    Presented work is dedicated to improvement of teaching-learning process and classroom time utilization. What should students carry with them from the classroom? Enthusiasm of their teacher, understanding of the basic concepts, understanding of what they should work on at home and, of course, some notes Teaching materials, which relate concepts of Physics to each other and to a variety of concepts in other areas of knowledge and human activity were developed. This approach is based on my experience of interacting with students with diversity of backgrounds, educational goals and objectives. Those include Business and Politics, Literature and Media, everyday family and College life, etc. A supplement workbook based on teaching materials was developed to be available for students to make notes during the lectures. This method was tested in Introductory Physics classes at the College of Charleston during some past years. The teaching-learning effectiveness has been increased and positive feedback was received from students and faculty at the College and some other Universities.

  10. Improving Diversity and Educational Outreach at the K-14 level: A Call to Action for the AGU Membership

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, F. R.; Johnson, R.

    2002-12-01

    In 2002, the Subcommittee on Diversity (SD) of the Committee on Education and Human Resources (CEHR) submitted a Diversity Plan to the leadership of AGU. This plan outlines specific programs and goals that AGU can follow to help improve diversity in the Earth and space sciences. Diversity issues are key components to improve the human resource potential in the geosciences. As women are the majority population, and racial and ethnic minorities are experiencing the largest growing segment of the United States population, it is within our best interest to actively recruit and retain these populations into our dynamic fields of study. The SD recognizes that the strength of the AGU lies within its membership. Composed of some of the brightest and talented scientists in the world, the AGU members are leaders and pioneers in our understanding of the Earth System. Yet, many, if not most, people within underrepresented communities are not aware of the relevance that the Earth and space sciences play in their lives. In this discussion, we will discuss the importance of the AGU membership in the Diversity Plan. In addition, we will outline specific things that AGU members can do to improve access of US students and citizenry to Earth and space science education. These steps require that AGU members become active advocates in the public, especially at the K-14 level.

  11. The High Cost of Low Educational Performance: The Long-Run Economic Impact of Improving PISA Outcomes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hanushek, Eric A.; Woessmann, Ludger

    2010-01-01

    While many nations express a commitment to improved educational quality, education often slips down on the policy agenda. Because the benefits of educational investments are seen only in the future, it is possible to underestimate the value and the importance of improvements. This report uses recent economic modelling to relate cognitive…

  12. Economic well-being and children's social adjustment: the role of family process in an ethnically diverse low-income sample.

    PubMed

    Mistry, Rashmita S; Vandewater, Elizabeth A; Huston, Aletha C; McLoyd, Vonnie C

    2002-01-01

    Using latent variable structural equation modeling, a family economic stress model that links economic well-being to child well-being in an ethnically diverse, low-income sample of 419 elementary school-age children was evaluated. The sample was 57% African American and 28% Hispanic, and most families were headed by single mothers. The results provided support for the position that family process is a critical mediator of the effects of economic hardship on children's social adjustment. Lower levels of economic well-being, and the corollary elevated perceptions of economic pressure indirectly affected parenting behavior through an adverse impact on parental psychological well-being. Distressed parents reported feeling less effective and capable in disciplinary interactions with their child and were observed to be less affectionate in parent-child interactions. In turn, less than optimal parenting predicted lower teacher ratings of children's positive social behavior and higher ratings of behavior problems. Multiple-group analyses revealed that the pathways by which economic hardship influences children's behavior appear to operate similarly for boys and girls, and for African American and Hispanic families.

  13. Effect of crop improvement on genetic diversity in oilseed Brassica rapa (turnip-rape) cultivars, detected by SSR markers.

    PubMed

    Ofori, Atta; Becker, Heiko C; Kopisch-Obuch, Friedrich J

    2008-01-01

    With the improvement of seed quality, Brassica rapa oilseed germplasm went through 2 major breeding bottlenecks during the introgression of genes for zero erucic acid content and low glucosinolate content, respectively. This study investigates the impact of these bottlenecks on the genetic diversity in European winter B. rapa by comparing 3 open-pollinated cultivars, each representing a different breeding period. Diversity was estimated on 32 plants per cultivar, with 16 simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers covering each of the B. rapa linkage groups. There was no significant loss of genetic diversity over the 3 cultivars as indicated by allele number (ranging from 59 to 55), mean allele number (from 3.68 to 3.50), Shannon information index (from 0.94 to 0.87) and expected heterozygosity (from 0.53 to 0.48). About 83% of the total variation was attributed to within-cultivar variation, and the remaining 17% to between-cultivar variation by analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA). Individual plants were separated into the 3 cultivars by principal coordinate analysis (PCoA). In conclusion, genetic diversity within cultivars was high and quality breeding in B. rapa did not significantly reduce the genetic diversity of B. rapa winter cultivars, so there is no risk of decline in performance due to quality improvement.

  14. A Bridge to the Stars: An Innovative Pipeline to Improve STEM Diversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McIntosh, Daniel H.

    2016-06-01

    Improving diversity in the STEM workforce is a top priority for both the NSF and NASA. Increasing participation from underrepresented groups in the physical sciences like astronomy remains an even more serious challenge with little progress made despite federal mandates. Focusing resources on a small number of academically high-performing individuals is not enough and reinforces the idea that STEM is exclusive. To make real progress requires (1) identifying a larger pool of inner-city secondary students who may not have been exposed to many STEM opportunities nor have the highest grades, yet, may have both the ability and desire to succeed in STEM if inspired; (2) providing these students with high impact exposure to science through an extended and engaging interaction with a professional scientist that fosters student success; and (3) establishing long-term partnerships with community teachers and administrators to facilitate a critical bridge between high school and college. My bridge pipeline provides a role model. The extended engagement is enrollment in a 1-semester, learner-centered 'Astro100' course with an award-winning professor. Using NASA Space Grant funding, 31 scholarships have been awarded over 6 semesters. All Scholars meet underrepresented/underprivileged criteria based on race, sex or income; key demographics: 2/3 AA+HA, 2/3 female. To promote student success, the program includes mentoring interns drawn from top students in previous Astro100 courses; 50% are female. The Scholars gained university credit with an 81% overall average grade, 97% with a passing grade. Longitudinal tracking of college enrollment into STEM is underway.

  15. Integration options for high energy efficiency and improved economics in a wood-to-ethanol process

    PubMed Central

    Sassner, Per; Zacchi, Guido

    2008-01-01

    Background There is currently a steady increase in the use of wood-based fuels for heat and power production in Sweden. A major proportion of these fuels could serve as feedstock for ethanol production. In this study various options for the utilization of the solid residue formed during ethanol production from spruce, such as the production of pellets, electricity and heat for district heating, were compared in terms of overall energy efficiency and production cost. The effects of changes in the process performance, such as variations in the ethanol yield and/or the energy demand, were also studied. The process was based on SO2-catalysed steam pretreatment, which was followed by simultaneous saccharification and fermentation. A model including all the major process steps was implemented in the commercial flow-sheeting program Aspen Plus, the model input was based on data recently obtained on lab scale or in a process development unit. Results For the five base case scenarios presented in the paper the overall energy efficiency ranged from 53 to 92%, based on the lower heating values, and a minimum ethanol selling price from 3.87 to 4.73 Swedish kronor per litre (0.41–0.50 EUR/L); however, ethanol production was performed in essentially the same way in each base case scenario. (Highly realistic) improvements in the ethanol yield and reductions in the energy demand resulted in significantly lower production costs for all scenarios. Conclusion Although ethanol was shown to be the main product, i.e. yielding the major part of the income, the co-product revenue had a considerable effect on the process economics and the importance of good utilization of the entire feedstock was clearly shown. With the assumed prices of the co-products, utilization of the excess solid residue for heat and power production was highly economically favourable. The study also showed that improvements in the ethanol yield and reductions in the energy demand resulted in significant production

  16. African goat improvement project: A feed the future initiative harnessing genetic diversity for conservation, disease resistance, and improved productivity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Food production systems in Africa depend heavily on the use of locally adapted animals. These animals are of agricultural, cultural, and economic importance to humans. Goats, in particular, are critical to the small-scale farmer as they are easier to acquire, maintain, and act as scavengers in spar...

  17. African goat improvement project: a Feed the Future initiative harnessing genetic diversity for conservation, disease resistance, and improved productivity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Food production systems in Africa depend heavily on the use of locally adapted animals. These animals are of agricultural, cultural, and economic importance to humans, providing milk, meat, fuel, and income. These animals are also often part of local tradition. Goats, in particular, are critical t...

  18. IMPROVED TUBULARS FOR BETTER ECONOMICS IN DEEP GAS WELL DRILLING USING MICROWAVE TECHNOLOGY

    SciTech Connect

    Dinesh Agrawal; Paul Gigl; Mahlon Dennis; Roderic Stanley

    2005-03-01

    The main objective of the research program has been to improve the rate-of-penetration in deep hostile environments by improving the life cycle and performance of coiled-tubing, an important component of a deep well drilling system for oil and gas exploration, by utilizing the latest developments in the microwave materials technology. Originally, it was proposed to accomplish this by developing an efficient and economically viable continuous microwave process to sinter continuously formed/extruded steel powder for the manufacture of seamless coiled tubing and other tubular products. However, based on the results and faced with insurmountable difficulties in the extrusion and de-waxing processes, the approach of achieving the goals of the program has been slightly changed. In the continuation proposal an approach of microwave sintering combined with Cold Isostatic Press (CIP) and joining (by induction or microwave) is adopted. This process can be developed into a semi-continuous sintering process if the CIP can produce parts fast enough to match the microwave sintering rates. Originally, the entire program was spread over three phases with the following goals: Phase I: Demonstration of the feasibility concept of continuous microwave sintering process for tubular steel products. Phase II: Design, building and testing of a prototype microwave system which shall be combined with a continuous extruder for steel tubular objects. Phase III: Execution of the plan for commercialization of the technology by one of the industrial partners. However, since some of the goals of the phase I were not completed, an extension of nine months was granted and we continued extrusion experiments, designed and built semicontinuous microwave sintering unit.

  19. Bigger is better: Improved nature conservation and economic returns from landscape-level mitigation

    PubMed Central

    Kennedy, Christina M.; Miteva, Daniela A.; Baumgarten, Leandro; Hawthorne, Peter L.; Sochi, Kei; Polasky, Stephen; Oakleaf, James R.; Uhlhorn, Elizabeth M.; Kiesecker, Joseph

    2016-01-01

    Impact mitigation is a primary mechanism on which countries rely to reduce environmental externalities and balance development with conservation. Mitigation policies are transitioning from traditional project-by-project planning to landscape-level planning. Although this larger-scale approach is expected to provide greater conservation benefits at the lowest cost, empirical justification is still scarce. Using commercial sugarcane expansion in the Brazilian Cerrado as a case study, we apply economic and biophysical steady-state models to quantify the benefits of the Brazilian Forest Code (FC) under landscape- and property-level planning. We find that FC compliance imposes small costs to business but can generate significant long-term benefits to nature: supporting 32 (±37) additional species (largely habitat specialists), storing 593,000 to 2,280,000 additional tons of carbon worth $69 million to $265 million ($ pertains to U.S. dollars), and marginally improving surface water quality. Relative to property-level compliance, we find that landscape-level compliance reduces total business costs by $19 million to $35 million per 6-year sugarcane growing cycle while often supporting more species and storing more carbon. Our results demonstrate that landscape-level mitigation provides cost-effective conservation and can be used to promote sustainable development. PMID:27419225

  20. Bigger is better: Improved nature conservation and economic returns from landscape-level mitigation.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Christina M; Miteva, Daniela A; Baumgarten, Leandro; Hawthorne, Peter L; Sochi, Kei; Polasky, Stephen; Oakleaf, James R; Uhlhorn, Elizabeth M; Kiesecker, Joseph

    2016-07-01

    Impact mitigation is a primary mechanism on which countries rely to reduce environmental externalities and balance development with conservation. Mitigation policies are transitioning from traditional project-by-project planning to landscape-level planning. Although this larger-scale approach is expected to provide greater conservation benefits at the lowest cost, empirical justification is still scarce. Using commercial sugarcane expansion in the Brazilian Cerrado as a case study, we apply economic and biophysical steady-state models to quantify the benefits of the Brazilian Forest Code (FC) under landscape- and property-level planning. We find that FC compliance imposes small costs to business but can generate significant long-term benefits to nature: supporting 32 (±37) additional species (largely habitat specialists), storing 593,000 to 2,280,000 additional tons of carbon worth $69 million to $265 million ($ pertains to U.S. dollars), and marginally improving surface water quality. Relative to property-level compliance, we find that landscape-level compliance reduces total business costs by $19 million to $35 million per 6-year sugarcane growing cycle while often supporting more species and storing more carbon. Our results demonstrate that landscape-level mitigation provides cost-effective conservation and can be used to promote sustainable development.

  1. Bigger is better: Improved nature conservation and economic returns from landscape-level mitigation.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Christina M; Miteva, Daniela A; Baumgarten, Leandro; Hawthorne, Peter L; Sochi, Kei; Polasky, Stephen; Oakleaf, James R; Uhlhorn, Elizabeth M; Kiesecker, Joseph

    2016-07-01

    Impact mitigation is a primary mechanism on which countries rely to reduce environmental externalities and balance development with conservation. Mitigation policies are transitioning from traditional project-by-project planning to landscape-level planning. Although this larger-scale approach is expected to provide greater conservation benefits at the lowest cost, empirical justification is still scarce. Using commercial sugarcane expansion in the Brazilian Cerrado as a case study, we apply economic and biophysical steady-state models to quantify the benefits of the Brazilian Forest Code (FC) under landscape- and property-level planning. We find that FC compliance imposes small costs to business but can generate significant long-term benefits to nature: supporting 32 (±37) additional species (largely habitat specialists), storing 593,000 to 2,280,000 additional tons of carbon worth $69 million to $265 million ($ pertains to U.S. dollars), and marginally improving surface water quality. Relative to property-level compliance, we find that landscape-level compliance reduces total business costs by $19 million to $35 million per 6-year sugarcane growing cycle while often supporting more species and storing more carbon. Our results demonstrate that landscape-level mitigation provides cost-effective conservation and can be used to promote sustainable development. PMID:27419225

  2. Advanced Aerodynamic Devices to Improve the Performance, Economics, Handling, and Safety of Heavy Vehicles

    SciTech Connect

    Robert J. Englar

    2001-05-14

    Research is being conducted at the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) to develop advanced aerodynamic devices to improve the performance, economics, stability, handling and safety of operation of Heavy Vehicles by using previously-developed and flight-tested pneumatic (blown) aircraft technology. Recent wind-tunnel investigations of a generic Heavy Vehicle model with blowing slots on both the leading and trailing edges of the trailer have been conducted under contract to the DOE Office of Heavy Vehicle Technologies. These experimental results show overall aerodynamic drag reductions on the Pneumatic Heavy Vehicle of 50% using only 1 psig blowing pressure in the plenums, and over 80% drag reductions if additional blowing air were available. Additionally, an increase in drag force for braking was confirmed by blowing different slots. Lift coefficient was increased for rolling resistance reduction by blowing only the top slot, while downforce was produced for traction increase by blowing only the bottom. Also, side force and yawing moment were generated on either side of the vehicle, and directional stability was restored by blowing the appropriate side slot. These experimental results and the predicted full-scale payoffs are presented in this paper, as is a discussion of additional applications to conventional commercial autos, buses, motor homes, and Sport Utility Vehicles.

  3. A Systematic Review of Health Economic Analyses of Housing Improvement Interventions and Insecticide-Treated Bednets in the Home

    PubMed Central

    Pega, Frank; Wilson, Nick

    2016-01-01

    Background Housing improvements have considerable potential for improving health. So does the provision of insecticide-treated bednets for malaria prevention. Therefore we aimed to conduct updated systematic reviews of health economic analyses in both these intervention domains. Methods and findings The search strategy included economic analyses of housing improvement interventions and use of insecticide-treated bednets for community-dwelling, healthy populations (published between 1 January 2000 and 15 April 2014). We searched the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, MEDLINE, PubMed, EMBASE, and three health economics databases. Thirty-five economic analyses of seven types of intervention fulfilled the inclusion criteria. Most included studies adopted a health sector perspective and were cost-effectiveness analyses using decision analytic modeling or conducted alongside trials. The overall quality of the studies was generally likely to be adequate for informing policy-making (albeit with limitations in some areas). There was fairly consistent evidence for the cost-effectiveness/favorable cost-benefit of removing indoor lead to prevent lead poisoning and sequelae, and retrofitting insulation to prevent lung disease. But the value of assessing and improving home safety and providing smoke alarms to prevent injuries was more mixed and the economic evidence was inconclusive or insufficient for: home ventilation to prevent lung disease, installing heaters to prevent lung disease and regulating tap water temperatures to prevent scalding. Few studies (n = 4) considered health equity. The 12 studies of providing insecticide-treated bednets or hammocks to prevent malaria found these interventions to be moderately to highly cost-effective. Conclusions This systematic review provides updated evidence that several housing improvement interventions (such as removing indoor lead and retrofitting insulation) and also the provision of insecticide-treated bednets are cost

  4. Diversity of Inner Ears in Fishes: Possible Contribution Towards Hearing Improvements and Evolutionary Considerations.

    PubMed

    Schulz-Mirbach, Tanja; Ladich, Friedrich

    2016-01-01

    Fishes have evolved the largest diversity of inner ears among vertebrates. While G. Retzius introduced us to the diversity of the gross morphology of fish ears in the late nineteenth century, it was A. N. Popper who unraveled the large variety of the fine structure during the last four decades. Modifications of the basic inner ear structure-consisting of three semicircular canals and their sensory epithelia, the cristae and three otolithic end organs (utricle, saccule, lagena) including the maculae-mainly relate to the saccule and lagena and the respective sensory epithelia, the macula sacculi and macula lagenae. Despite the profound morphological knowledge of inner ears and the morphological variability, the functional significance of this diversity is still largely unknown. The aims of this review are therefore twofold. First it provides an update of the state of the art of inner ear diversity in bony fishes. Second it summarizes and discusses hypotheses on the evolution of this diversity as well as formulates open questions and promising approaches to tackle these issues.

  5. Diversity of Inner Ears in Fishes: Possible Contribution Towards Hearing Improvements and Evolutionary Considerations.

    PubMed

    Schulz-Mirbach, Tanja; Ladich, Friedrich

    2016-01-01

    Fishes have evolved the largest diversity of inner ears among vertebrates. While G. Retzius introduced us to the diversity of the gross morphology of fish ears in the late nineteenth century, it was A. N. Popper who unraveled the large variety of the fine structure during the last four decades. Modifications of the basic inner ear structure-consisting of three semicircular canals and their sensory epithelia, the cristae and three otolithic end organs (utricle, saccule, lagena) including the maculae-mainly relate to the saccule and lagena and the respective sensory epithelia, the macula sacculi and macula lagenae. Despite the profound morphological knowledge of inner ears and the morphological variability, the functional significance of this diversity is still largely unknown. The aims of this review are therefore twofold. First it provides an update of the state of the art of inner ear diversity in bony fishes. Second it summarizes and discusses hypotheses on the evolution of this diversity as well as formulates open questions and promising approaches to tackle these issues. PMID:26515322

  6. Adolescent Diversity in Ethnic, Economic, and Cultural Contexts. Advances in Adolescent Development: An Annual Book Series, Volume 10.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Montemayor, Raymond, Ed.; Adams, Gerald R., Ed; Gullotta, Thomas P., Ed.

    This book is designed to summarize, integrate, and evaluate current research on adolescent development. It contains the following chapters: (1) "Paths to Adulthood: Adolescent Diversity in Contemporary America" (Ramond Montemayor); (2) "Competence among Urban Adolescents in Poverty: Multiple Forms, Contexts, and Developmental Processes" (Hirokazu…

  7. Development of Pneumatic Aerodynamic Devices to Improve the Performance, Economics, and Safety of Heavy Vehicles

    SciTech Connect

    Robert J. Englar

    2000-06-19

    Under contract to the DOE Office of Heavy Vehicle Technologies, the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) is developing and evaluating pneumatic (blown) aerodynamic devices to improve the performance, economics, stability and safety of operation of Heavy Vehicles. The objective of this program is to apply the pneumatic aerodynamic aircraft technology previously developed and flight-tested by GTRI personnel to the design of an efficient blown tractor-trailer configuration. Recent experimental results obtained by GTRI using blowing have shown drag reductions of 35% on a streamlined automobile wind-tunnel model. Also measured were lift or down-load increases of 100-150% and the ability to control aerodynamic moments about all 3 axes without any moving control surfaces. Similar drag reductions yielded by blowing on bluff afterbody trailers in current US trucking fleet operations are anticipated to reduce yearly fuel consumption by more than 1.2 billion gallons, while even further reduction is possible using pneumatic lift to reduce tire rolling resistance. Conversely, increased drag and down force generated instantaneously by blowing can greatly increase braking characteristics and control in wet/icy weather due to effective ''weight'' increases on the tires. Safety is also enhanced by controlling side loads and moments caused on these Heavy Vehicles by winds, gusts and other vehicles passing. This may also help to eliminate the jack-knifing problem if caused by extreme wind side loads on the trailer. Lastly, reduction of the turbulent wake behind the trailer can reduce splash and spray patterns and rough air being experienced by following vehicles. To be presented by GTRI in this paper will be results developed during the early portion of this effort, including a preliminary systems study, CFD prediction of the blown flowfields, and design of the baseline conventional tractor-trailer model and the pneumatic wind-tunnel model.

  8. Implementing Perennial Kitchen Garden Model to Improve Diet Diversity in Melghat, India

    PubMed Central

    Birdi, Tannaz J.; Shah, Shimoni U.

    2016-01-01

    Lack of diet diversity causing micronutrient deficiency is common in developing countries and is gaining attention due to the hidden consequences of impaired physical and cognitive development. This paper describes the propagation of a sustainable perennial kitchen garden (KG) model to address household (HH) diet diversity in Melghat. Nutrient dense plants, comprising of minimum one tree (perennial) and one green leafy vegetable (GLV) were given to participating HHs along with qualitative interventions. Baseline survey was conducted in winter 2011 followed by seasonal surveys over 2 years to record changes in KG practices, dietary intake and childcare practices. Marked increase from 4% at baseline to 95% at endline was seen in the KG maintainance. Increased diversity was seen in all food categories other than cereals and pulses. Variety of GLVs consumed increased over the two winters as well as the 2 summers. However, no change in the quantity of GLV consumed was noted which was attributed to the duration of the study period being insufficient for the trees to grow and provide adequate leaves for consumption. Notably, livelihood component was not promoted and HHs were encouraged to harvest and distribute excess seeds to relatives and neighbours. The study generated huge demand from HHs within the intervention and neighbouring villages. It concludes that a well designed perennial KG along with imparting adequate knowledge can be a sustainable practice to increase diet diversity and GLV intake which would help address micronutrient deficiencies in the community. PMID:26573040

  9. Setting an Egalitarian Social Norm in the Classroom: Improving Attitudes towards Diversity among Male Engineering Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bennett, Jill E.; Sekaquaptewa, Denise

    2014-01-01

    This study tested the effect of a message describing a social norm of egalitarian attitudes and behaviors in an engineering college on male students' attitudes and behavioral intentions surrounding diversity in engineering. Participants were first-semester university students enrolled in four sections of an introductory engineering course in…

  10. An improved empirical model for diversity gain on Earth-space propagation paths

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hodge, D. B.

    1981-01-01

    An empirical model was generated to estimate diversity gain on Earth-space propagation paths as a function of Earth terminal separation distance, link frequency, elevation angle, and angle between the baseline and the path azimuth. The resulting model reproduces the entire experimental data set with an RMS error of 0.73 dB.

  11. Listening to Students: Intellectual Entrepreneurship--Improving Education and Increasing Diversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hurtado, Ana Lucia

    2007-01-01

    According to the author, the lack of diversity in graduate programs is a national crisis. A May 2005 report by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation indicated that, even though African Americans and Hispanics make up 32 percent of all U.S. citizens in the normal age range of Ph.D. candidates, only seven percent of all doctoral…

  12. Improving Achievement for Linguistically and Culturally Diverse Learners through an Inquiry-Based Earth Systems Curriculum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lambert, Julie; Ariza, Eileen N. Whelan

    2008-01-01

    This report describes an inquiry-based Earth systems curriculum and strategies for teaching diverse students, which were embedded in the curriculum. The curriculum was implemented with 5th-grade students with varied linguistic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds in five schools in a large, southeastern U.S., urban school district. At the end…

  13. Implementing Perennial Kitchen Garden Model to Improve Diet Diversity in Melghat, India.

    PubMed

    Birdi, Tannaz J; Shah, Shimoni U

    2015-07-30

    Lack of diet diversity causing micronutrient deficiency is common in developing countries and is gaining attention due to the hidden consequences of impaired physical and cognitive development. This paper describes the propagation of a sustainable perennial kitchen garden (KG) model to address household (HH) diet diversity in Melghat. Nutrient dense plants, comprising of minimum one tree (perennial) and one green leafy vegetable (GLV) were given to participating HHs along with qualitative interventions. Baseline survey was conducted in winter 2011 followed by seasonal surveys over 2 years to record changes in KG practices, dietary intake and childcare practices. Marked increase from 4% at baseline to 95% at endline was seen in the KG maintainance. Increased diversity was seen in all food categories other than cereals and pulses. Variety of GLVs consumed increased over the two winters as well as the 2 summers. However, no change in the quantity of GLV consumed was noted which was attributed to the duration of the study period being insufficient for the trees to grow and provide adequate leaves for consumption. Notably, livelihood component was not promoted and HHs were encouraged to harvest and distribute excess seeds to relatives and neighbours. The study generated huge demand from HHs within the intervention and neighbouring villages. It concludes that a well designed perennial KG along with imparting adequate knowledge can be a sustainable practice to increase diet diversity and GLV intake which would help address micronutrient deficiencies in the community.

  14. Socio-Economic Status, Cultural Diversity and the Aspirations of Secondary Students in the Western Suburbs of Melbourne, Australia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bowden, Mark P.; Doughney, James

    2010-01-01

    Using data from a recent survey of Australian secondary students, we find that those from higher socio-economic backgrounds are more likely to aspire to attend university. The same can be said for students who do not speak English at home. We find that students with an ethnic minority background are more likely to perceive higher levels of support…

  15. ECONOMICS AND FEASIBILITY OF RANKINE CYCLE IMPROVEMENTS FOR COAL FIRED POWER PLANTS

    SciTech Connect

    Richard E. Waryasz; Gregory N. Liljedahl

    2004-09-08

    ALSTOM Power Inc.'s Power Plant Laboratories (ALSTOM) has teamed with the U.S. Department of Energy National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE NETL), American Electric Company (AEP) and Parsons Energy and Chemical Group to conduct a comprehensive study evaluating coal fired steam power plants, known as Rankine Cycles, equipped with three different combustion systems: Pulverized Coal (PC), Circulating Fluidized Bed (CFB), and Circulating Moving Bed (CMB{trademark}). Five steam cycles utilizing a wide range of steam conditions were used with these combustion systems. The motivation for this study was to establish through engineering analysis, the most cost-effective performance potential available through improvement in the Rankine Cycle steam conditions and combustion systems while at the same time ensuring that the most stringent emission performance based on CURC (Coal Utilization Research Council) 2010 targets are met: > 98% sulfur removal; < 0.05 lbm/MM-Btu NO{sub x}; < 0.01 lbm/MM-Btu Particulate Matter; and > 90% Hg removal. The final report discusses the results of a coal fired steam power plant project, which is comprised of two parts. The main part of the study is the analysis of ten (10) Greenfield steam power plants employing three different coal combustion technologies: Pulverized Coal (PC), Circulating Fluidized Bed (CFB), and Circulating Moving Bed (CMB{trademark}) integrated with five different steam cycles. The study explores the technical feasibility, thermal performance, environmental performance, and economic viability of ten power plants that could be deployed currently, in the near, intermediate, and long-term time frame. For the five steam cycles, main steam temperatures vary from 1,000 F to 1,292 F and pressures from 2,400 psi to 5,075 psi. Reheat steam temperatures vary from 1,000 F to 1,328 F. The number of feedwater heaters varies from 7 to 9 and the associated feedwater temperature varies from 500 F to 626 F. The main part of the study

  16. A two-component rain model for the prediction of attenuation and diversity improvement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crane, R. K.

    1982-01-01

    A new model was developed to predict attenuation statistics for a single Earth-satellite or terrestrial propagation path. The model was extended to provide predictions of the joint occurrences of specified or higher attenuation values on two closely spaced Earth-satellite paths. The joint statistics provide the information required to obtain diversity gain or diversity advantage estimates. The new model is meteorologically based. It was tested against available Earth-satellite beacon observations and terrestrial path measurements. The model employs the rain climate region descriptions of the Global rain model. The rms deviation between the predicted and observed attenuation values for the terrestrial path data was 35 percent, a result consistent with the expectations of the Global model when the rain rate distribution for the path is not used in the calculation. Within the United States the rms deviation between measurement and prediction was 36 percent but worldwide it was 79 percent.

  17. An Improved DNA Extraction Method for Efficient and Quantitative Recovery of Phytoplankton Diversity in Natural Assemblages

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Jian; Li, Meizhen; Lin, Senjie

    2015-01-01

    Marine phytoplankton are highly diverse with different species possessing different cell coverings, posing challenges for thoroughly breaking the cells in DNA extraction yet preserving DNA integrity. While quantitative molecular techniques have been increasingly used in phytoplankton research, an effective and simple method broadly applicable to different lineages and natural assemblages is still lacking. In this study, we developed a bead-beating protocol based on our previous experience and tested it against 9 species of phytoplankton representing different lineages and different cell covering rigidities. We found the bead-beating method enhanced the final yield of DNA (highest as 2 folds) in comparison with the non-bead-beating method, while also preserving the DNA integrity. When our method was applied to a field sample collected at a subtropical bay located in Xiamen, China, the resultant ITS clone library revealed a highly diverse assemblage of phytoplankton and other micro-eukaryotes, including Archaea, Amoebozoa, Chlorophyta, Ciliphora, Bacillariophyta, Dinophyta, Fungi, Metazoa, etc. The appearance of thecate dinoflagellates, thin-walled phytoplankton and “naked” unicellular organisms indicates that our method could obtain the intact DNA of organisms with different cell coverings. All the results demonstrate that our method is useful for DNA extraction of phytoplankton and environmental surveys of their diversity and abundance. PMID:26218575

  18. New Fabrication Method Improves the Efficiency and Economics of Solar Cells (Fact Sheet)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    2012-07-01

    NT-based DSSCs and determines an optimal illumination direction to use in these cells. The synthetic fabrication strategy will improve the economics and conversion efficiency of DSSCs.

  19. A livelihood intervention to improve economic and psychosocial well-being in rural Uganda: Longitudinal pilot study.

    PubMed

    Kakuhikire, Bernard; Suquillo, Diego; Atuhumuza, Elly; Mushavi, Rumbidzai; Perkins, Jessica M; Venkataramani, Atheendar S; Weiser, Sheri D; Bangsberg, David R; Tsai, Alexander C

    2016-12-01

    HIV and poverty are inextricably intertwined in sub-Saharan Africa. Economic and livelihood intervention strategies have been suggested to help mitigate the adverse economic effects of HIV, but few intervention studies have focused specifically on HIV-positive persons. We conducted three pilot studies to assess a livelihood intervention consisting of an initial orientation and loan package of chickens and associated implements to create poultry microenterprises. We enrolled 15 HIV-positive and 22 HIV-negative participants and followed them for up to 18 months. Over the course of follow-up, participants achieved high chicken survival and loan repayment rates. Median monthly income increased, and severe food insecurity declined, although these changes were not statistically significant (P-values ranged from 0.11 to 0.68). In-depth interviews with a purposive sample of three HIV-positive participants identified a constellation of economic and psychosocial benefits, including improved social integration and reduced stigma.

  20. A livelihood intervention to improve economic and psychosocial well-being in rural Uganda: Longitudinal pilot study.

    PubMed

    Kakuhikire, Bernard; Suquillo, Diego; Atuhumuza, Elly; Mushavi, Rumbidzai; Perkins, Jessica M; Venkataramani, Atheendar S; Weiser, Sheri D; Bangsberg, David R; Tsai, Alexander C

    2016-12-01

    HIV and poverty are inextricably intertwined in sub-Saharan Africa. Economic and livelihood intervention strategies have been suggested to help mitigate the adverse economic effects of HIV, but few intervention studies have focused specifically on HIV-positive persons. We conducted three pilot studies to assess a livelihood intervention consisting of an initial orientation and loan package of chickens and associated implements to create poultry microenterprises. We enrolled 15 HIV-positive and 22 HIV-negative participants and followed them for up to 18 months. Over the course of follow-up, participants achieved high chicken survival and loan repayment rates. Median monthly income increased, and severe food insecurity declined, although these changes were not statistically significant (P-values ranged from 0.11 to 0.68). In-depth interviews with a purposive sample of three HIV-positive participants identified a constellation of economic and psychosocial benefits, including improved social integration and reduced stigma. PMID:27619011

  1. Recruitment strategies should not be randomly selected: empirically improving recruitment success and diversity in developmental psychology research

    PubMed Central

    Sugden, Nicole A.; Moulson, Margaret C.

    2015-01-01

    Psychological and developmental research have been critiqued for the lack of diversity of research samples. Because differences in culture, race, and ethnicity can influence participant behavior, limited diversity limits the generalizability of the findings. These differences may also impact how participants behave in response to recruitment attempts, which suggests that recruitment itself may be leveraged to increase sample diversity. The goal of the current study was to determine what factors, within a recruitment interaction, could be leveraged to increase success and diversity when recruiting families with children for developmental research. Study 1 found three factors influenced success: (1) recruitment was more successful when other potential participants were also interested (i.e., recruiters were busy), (2) recruiters of particular races were more successful than recruiters of other races, and (3) differences in success were related to what the recruiter said to engage the potential participant (i.e., the script). The latter two factors interacted, suggesting some recruiters were using less optimal scripts. To improve success rates, study 2 randomly assigned scripts to recruiters and encouraged them to recruit more vigorously during busy periods. Study 2 found that two factors influenced success: (1) some scripts were more successful than others and (2) we were more successful at recruiting non-White potential participants than White participants. These two interacted, with some scripts being more successful with White and other scripts being more successful with non-White families. This intervention significantly increased recruitment success rate by 8.1% and the overall number of families recruited by 15.3%. These findings reveal that empirically evaluating and tailoring recruitment efforts based on the most successful strategies is effective in boosting diversity through increased participation of children from non-White families. PMID:25972829

  2. Recruitment strategies should not be randomly selected: empirically improving recruitment success and diversity in developmental psychology research.

    PubMed

    Sugden, Nicole A; Moulson, Margaret C

    2015-01-01

    Psychological and developmental research have been critiqued for the lack of diversity of research samples. Because differences in culture, race, and ethnicity can influence participant behavior, limited diversity limits the generalizability of the findings. These differences may also impact how participants behave in response to recruitment attempts, which suggests that recruitment itself may be leveraged to increase sample diversity. The goal of the current study was to determine what factors, within a recruitment interaction, could be leveraged to increase success and diversity when recruiting families with children for developmental research. Study 1 found three factors influenced success: (1) recruitment was more successful when other potential participants were also interested (i.e., recruiters were busy), (2) recruiters of particular races were more successful than recruiters of other races, and (3) differences in success were related to what the recruiter said to engage the potential participant (i.e., the script). The latter two factors interacted, suggesting some recruiters were using less optimal scripts. To improve success rates, study 2 randomly assigned scripts to recruiters and encouraged them to recruit more vigorously during busy periods. Study 2 found that two factors influenced success: (1) some scripts were more successful than others and (2) we were more successful at recruiting non-White potential participants than White participants. These two interacted, with some scripts being more successful with White and other scripts being more successful with non-White families. This intervention significantly increased recruitment success rate by 8.1% and the overall number of families recruited by 15.3%. These findings reveal that empirically evaluating and tailoring recruitment efforts based on the most successful strategies is effective in boosting diversity through increased participation of children from non-White families.

  3. Improved Tubulars for Better Economics in Deep Gas Well Drilling using Microwave Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Dinesh Agrawal; Paul Gigl; Mahlon Dennis

    2006-02-01

    The objective of the research program has been to improve the rate-of-penetration in deep hostile environments by improving the life cycle and performance of coiled-tubing, an important component of a deep well drilling system for oil and gas exploration. The current process of the manufacture long tubular steel products consists of shaping the tube from flat strip, welding the seam and sections into lengths that can be miles long, and coiling onto reels. However, the welds, that are a weak point, now limit the performance of the coil tubing. This is not only from a toughness standpoint but also from a corrosion standpoint. By utilizing the latest developments in the sintering of materials with microwave energy and powder metal extrusion technology for the manufacture of seamless coiled tubing and other tubular products, these problems can be eliminated. The project is therefore to develop a continuous microwave process to sinter continuously steel tubulars and butt-join them using microwave/induction process. The program started about three years ago and now we are in the middle of Phase II. In Phase I (which ended in February 2005) a feasibility study of the extrusion process of steel powder and continuously sinter the extruded tubing was conducted. The research program has been based on the development of microwave technology to process tubular specimens of powder metals, especially steels. The existing microwave systems at the Materials Research Laboratory (MRL) and Dennis Tool Company (DTC) were suitably modified to process tubular small specimens. The precursor powder metals were either extruded or cold isostatically pressed (CIP) to form tubular specimens. After conducting an extensive and systematic investigation of extrusion process for producing long tubes, it was determined that there were several difficulties in adopting extrusion process and it cannot be economically used for producing thousands of feet long green tubing. Therefore, in the Phase II the

  4. Improving models of democracy: the example of lagged effects of economic development, education, and gender equality.

    PubMed

    Balaev, Mikhail

    2014-07-01

    The author examines how time delayed effects of economic development, education, and gender equality influence political democracy. Literature review shows inadequate understanding of lagged effects, which raises methodological and theoretical issues with the current quantitative studies of democracy. Using country-years as a unit of analysis, the author estimates a series of OLS PCSE models for each predictor with a systematic analysis of the distributions of the lagged effects. The second set of multiple OLS PCSE regressions are estimated including all three independent variables. The results show that economic development, education, and gender have three unique trajectories of the time-delayed effects: Economic development has long-term effects, education produces continuous effects regardless of the timing, and gender equality has the most prominent immediate and short term effects. The results call for the reassessment of model specifications and theoretical setups in the quantitative studies of democracy.

  5. Can we do better? Economic analysis of human resource investment to improve home care service for the elderly in Serbia

    PubMed Central

    Mihic, Marko M; Todorovic, Marija Lj; Obradovic, Vladimir Lj; Mitrovic, Zorica M

    2016-01-01

    Background Social services aimed at the elderly are facing great challenges caused by progressive aging of the global population but also by the constant pressure to spend funds in a rational manner. Purpose This paper focuses on analyzing the investments into human resources aimed at enhancing home care for the elderly since many countries have recorded progress in the area over the past years. The goal of this paper is to stress the significance of performing an economic analysis of the investment. Methods This paper combines statistical analysis methods such as correlation and regression analysis, methods of economic analysis, and scenario method. Results The economic analysis of investing in human resources for home care service in Serbia showed that the both scenarios of investing in either additional home care hours or more beneficiaries are cost-efficient. However, the optimal solution with the positive (and the highest) value of economic net present value criterion is to invest in human resources to boost the number of home care hours from 6 to 8 hours per week and increase the number of the beneficiaries to 33%. Conclusion This paper shows how the statistical and economic analysis results can be used to evaluate different scenarios and enable quality decision-making based on exact data in order to improve health and quality of life of the elderly and spend funds in a rational manner. PMID:26869778

  6. Quality-filtering vastly improves diversity estimates from Illumina amplicon sequencing.

    PubMed

    Bokulich, Nicholas A; Subramanian, Sathish; Faith, Jeremiah J; Gevers, Dirk; Gordon, Jeffrey I; Knight, Rob; Mills, David A; Caporaso, J Gregory

    2013-01-01

    High-throughput sequencing has revolutionized microbial ecology, but read quality remains a considerable barrier to accurate taxonomy assignment and α-diversity assessment for microbial communities. We demonstrate that high-quality read length and abundance are the primary factors differentiating correct from erroneous reads produced by Illumina GAIIx, HiSeq and MiSeq instruments. We present guidelines for user-defined quality-filtering strategies, enabling efficient extraction of high-quality data and facilitating interpretation of Illumina sequencing results.

  7. Economic feasibility study for improving drinking water quality: a case study of arsenic contamination in rural Argentina.

    PubMed

    Molinos-Senante, María; Perez Carrera, Alejo; Hernández-Sancho, Francesc; Fernández-Cirelli, Alicia; Sala-Garrido, Ramón

    2014-12-01

    Economic studies are essential in evaluating the potential external investment support and/or internal tariffs available to improve drinking water quality. Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) is a useful tool to assess the economic feasibility of such interventions, i.e. to take some form of action to improve the drinking water quality. CBA should involve the market and non-market effects associated with the intervention. An economic framework was proposed in this study, which estimated the health avoided costs and the environmental benefits for the net present value of reducing the pollutant concentrations in drinking water. We conducted an empirical application to assess the economic feasibility of removing arsenic from water in a rural area of Argentina. Four small-scale methods were evaluated in our study. The results indicated that the inclusion of non-market benefits was integral to supporting investment projects. In addition, the application of the proposed framework will provide water authorities with more complete information for the decision-making process.

  8. Economic feasibility study for improving drinking water quality: a case study of arsenic contamination in rural Argentina.

    PubMed

    Molinos-Senante, María; Perez Carrera, Alejo; Hernández-Sancho, Francesc; Fernández-Cirelli, Alicia; Sala-Garrido, Ramón

    2014-12-01

    Economic studies are essential in evaluating the potential external investment support and/or internal tariffs available to improve drinking water quality. Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) is a useful tool to assess the economic feasibility of such interventions, i.e. to take some form of action to improve the drinking water quality. CBA should involve the market and non-market effects associated with the intervention. An economic framework was proposed in this study, which estimated the health avoided costs and the environmental benefits for the net present value of reducing the pollutant concentrations in drinking water. We conducted an empirical application to assess the economic feasibility of removing arsenic from water in a rural area of Argentina. Four small-scale methods were evaluated in our study. The results indicated that the inclusion of non-market benefits was integral to supporting investment projects. In addition, the application of the proposed framework will provide water authorities with more complete information for the decision-making process. PMID:24925717

  9. Heavy agricultural workloads and low crop diversity are strong barriers to improving child feeding practices in the Bolivian Andes

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Andrew D; Agudo, Yesmina Cruz; Galway, Lindsay; Bentley, Jeffery; Pinstrup-Andersen, Per

    2012-01-01

    Most nutrition initiatives to date aimed at improving infant and young child feeding (IYCF) have emphasized addressing knowledge gaps through behavior change messaging with less focus on addressing the underlying environmental barriers that may shape these behaviors. This research integrates an analysis of longitudinal dietary data with qualitative data on barriers to improved child feeding to identify the nature and extent of the barriers caregivers face to improving IYCF practices in a farming region of the Bolivian Andes, and to determine the relative influence of these barriers on caregivers’ abilities to improve IYCF practices. Sixty-nine caregivers were selected from a sample of 331 households that participated in a longitudinal survey assessing changes in IYCF practices among caregivers with children aged 0–36 months from March 2009 to March 2010. Forty-nine barriers within 12 categories of barriers were identified through semi-structured interviews with the 69 caregivers. The most frequently reported barriers were those related to women’s time dedicated to agricultural labor, the limited diversity of household agricultural production, and lack of support for child feeding from spouses and mothers-in-law. In multivariate analyses controlling for several variables that could potentially influence IYCF practices, these barriers were negatively associated with changes to the diversity of child diets, child dietary energy intake, and child meal frequency. While knowledge gaps and individual-level influences affected IYCF practices, physical and social caregiving environments in this region of Bolivia were even more important. Behavior change communication alone will likely not address the social and environmental barriers to improved child feeding that often prevent translation of improved knowledge into action. Particularly in rural regions, agriculture may strongly influence child feeding, not only indirectly through household food security, but also

  10. Recruiting diverse patients to a breast cancer risk communication trial--waiting rooms can improve access.

    PubMed Central

    Bodurtha, Joann N.; Quillin, John M.; Tracy, Kelly A.; Borzelleca, Joseph; McClish, Donna; Wilson, Diane Baer; Jones, Resa M.; Quillin, Julie; Bowen, Deborah

    2007-01-01

    Low participation among underserved populations in health research constrains progress in public health practices. From 2003 to 2005, Women's Health Clinic patients at the VCU Health System were recruited to a trial investigating breast cancer risk communication. In secondary analyses, we examined dimensions of the recruitment of these diverse women. The sample characteristics (age, insurance, race and previous mammograms) were compared to the overall clinic. Of recruitment attempts for eligible women, 45% consented; of those who declined, the top cited reasons were lack of time (40%) and lack of interest (18%). Of 899 participants, 35% qualified for the indigent care program, compared to 31% of the overall clinic (P<0.001). Forty-five percent of participants were African American, compared to 54% of overall clinic patients (P<0.001). Participants were younger (50 vs. 53 years, P<0.001) than the overall clinic population. Nonrepresentative enrollment of patients in clinical trials is common and could lead to suboptimal applicability of findings. Although there were statistically significant race and age differences between the study sample and the overall population, we demonstrate that waiting room recruitment can engage diverse women in a clinical trial and cancer risk communication. PMID:17722671

  11. Private Sector/Educator Collaboration: Project Improves Financial, Economic Literacy of America's Youth

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haynes, Deborah C.; Chinadle, Nicole

    2007-01-01

    The Family Economics and Financial Education Project (FEFE) began in 2001 at Montana State University with an annual grant from Take Charge America, Inc., a credit counseling and debt management company headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona. FEFE's mission is to provide educators with curriculum materials and training to be effective teachers of…

  12. Mass Media Campaign Improves Cervical Screening across All Socio-Economic Groups

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anderson, Jenny O.; Mullins, Robyn M.; Siahpush, Mohammad; Spittal, Matthew J.; Wakefield, Melanie

    2009-01-01

    Low socio-economic status (SES) has been associated with lower cervical screening rates. Mass media is one known strategy that can increase cervical screening participation. This study sought to determine whether a mass media campaign conducted in Victoria, Australia, in 2005 was effective in encouraging women across all SES groups to screen. Data…

  13. Concentrated Study Time and Improved Learning Efficiency: An Experiment Using "Economics U$A."

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grimes, Paul W.; Niss, James F.

    1989-01-01

    Reports on an experiment that tested whether course length and concentration affect learning. Using the "Economics U$A" television series, compares student performance in two classes taught over differing time periods. Results implied that concentrated time periods for courses may lead to more concentrated student effort. (LS)

  14. Using "U-Pace" Instruction to Improve the Academic Performance of Economically Disadvantaged Undergraduates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fleming, R.; Stoiber, L. C.; Pfeiffer, H. M.; Kienzler, S. E.; Fleming, R. R.; Pedrick, L. E.; Barth, D. J.; Reddy, D. .

    2016-01-01

    This study was undertaken to evaluate whether the student success associated with the "U-Pace" instructional approach, which integrates mastery-based learning with proactive instructor support in an online learning environment, would replicate for both economically disadvantaged students and students who are not economically…

  15. Application of Reservoir Characterization and Advanced Technology to Improve Recovery and Economics in a Lower Quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate Reservoir

    SciTech Connect

    Hickman, Scott T.; Justice James L.; Taylor, Archie R.

    1999-10-28

    The Class 2 Project at West Welch was designed to demonstrate the use of advanced technologies to enhance the economics of improved oil recovery (IOR) projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate (SSC) reservoirs, resulting in recovery of additional oil that would otherwise be left in the reservoir at project abandonment. Accurate reservoir description is critical to the effective evaluation and efficient design of IOR projects in the heterogeneous SSC reservoirs.

  16. Genome-wide comparative diversity uncovers multiple targets of selection for improvement in hexaploid wheat landraces and cultivars

    PubMed Central

    Cavanagh, Colin R.; Chao, Shiaoman; Wang, Shichen; Huang, Bevan Emma; Stephen, Stuart; Kiani, Seifollah; Forrest, Kerrie; Saintenac, Cyrille; Brown-Guedira, Gina L.; Akhunova, Alina; See, Deven; Bai, Guihua; Pumphrey, Michael; Tomar, Luxmi; Wong, Debbie; Kong, Stephan; Reynolds, Matthew; da Silva, Marta Lopez; Bockelman, Harold; Talbert, Luther; Anderson, James A.; Dreisigacker, Susanne; Baenziger, Stephen; Carter, Arron; Korzun, Viktor; Morrell, Peter Laurent; Dubcovsky, Jorge; Morell, Matthew K.; Sorrells, Mark E.; Hayden, Matthew J.; Akhunov, Eduard

    2013-01-01

    Domesticated crops experience strong human-mediated selection aimed at developing high-yielding varieties adapted to local conditions. To detect regions of the wheat genome subject to selection during improvement, we developed a high-throughput array to interrogate 9,000 gene-associated single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in a worldwide sample of 2,994 accessions of hexaploid wheat including landraces and modern cultivars. Using a SNP-based diversity map we characterized the impact of crop improvement on genomic and geographic patterns of genetic diversity. We found evidence of a small population bottleneck and extensive use of ancestral variation often traceable to founders of cultivars from diverse geographic regions. Analyzing genetic differentiation among populations and the extent of haplotype sharing, we identified allelic variants subjected to selection during improvement. Selective sweeps were found around genes involved in the regulation of flowering time and phenology. An introgression of a wild relative-derived gene conferring resistance to a fungal pathogen was detected by haplotype-based analysis. Comparing selective sweeps identified in different populations, we show that selection likely acts on distinct targets or multiple functionally equivalent alleles in different portions of the geographic range of wheat. The majority of the selected alleles were present at low frequency in local populations, suggesting either weak selection pressure or temporal variation in the targets of directional selection during breeding probably associated with changing agricultural practices or environmental conditions. The developed SNP chip and map of genetic variation provide a resource for advancing wheat breeding and supporting future population genomic and genome-wide association studies in wheat. PMID:23630259

  17. Economic consequences of improved temperature forecasts: An experiment with the Florida citrus growers (control group results). Executive summary. [weather forecasting

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1977-01-01

    A demonstration experiment is being planned to show that frost and freeze prediction improvements are possible utilizing timely Synchronous Meteorological Satellite temperature measurements and that this information can affect Florida citrus grower operations and decisions so as to significantly reduce the cost for frost and freeze protection and crop losses. The design and implementation of the first phase of an economic experiment which will monitor citrus growers decisions, actions, costs and losses, and meteorological forecasts and actual weather events was carried out. The economic experiment was designed to measure the change in annual protection costs and crop losses which are the direct result of improved temperature forecasts. To estimate the benefits that may result from improved temperature forecasting capability, control and test groups were established with effective separation being accomplished temporally. The control group, utilizing current forecasting capability, was observed during the 1976-77 frost season and the results are reported. A brief overview is given of the economic experiment, the results obtained to date, and the work which still remains to be done.

  18. Paramagnetic cellulose DNA isolation improves DNA yield and quality among diverse plant taxa1

    PubMed Central

    Moeller, Jackson R.; Moehn, Nicholas R.; Waller, Donald M.; Givnish, Thomas J.

    2014-01-01

    • Premise of the study: The chemical diversity of land plants ensures that no single DNA isolation method results in high yield and purity with little effort for all species. Here we evaluate a new technique originally developed for forensic science, based on MagnaCel paramagnetic cellulose particles (PMC), to determine its efficacy in extracting DNA from 25 plant species representing 21 families and 15 orders. • Methods and Results: Yield and purity of DNA isolated by PMC, DNeasy Plant Mini Kit (silica column), and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) methods were compared among four individuals for each of 25 plant species. PMC gave a twofold advantage in average yield, and the relative advantage of the PMC method was greatest for samples with the lowest DNA yields. PMC also produced more consistent sample purity based on absorbance ratios at 260:280 and 260:230 nm. • Conclusions: PMC technology is a promising alternative for plant DNA isolation. PMID:25309836

  19. An Evolutionary Algorithm for Improved Diversity in DSL Spectrum Balancing Solutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bezerra, Johelden; Klautau, Aldebaro; Monteiro, Marcio; Pelaes, Evaldo; Medeiros, Eduardo; Dortschy, Boris

    2010-12-01

    There are many spectrum balancing algorithms to combat the deleterious impact of crosstalk interference in digital subscriber lines (DSL) networks. These algorithms aim to find a unique operating point by optimizing the power spectral densities (PSDs) of the modems. Typically, the figure of merit of this optimization is the bit rate, power consumption or margin. This work poses and solves a different problem: instead of providing the solution for one specific operation point, it finds a set of operating points, each one corresponding to a distinct matrix with PSDs. This solution is useful for planning DSL deployment, for example, helping operators to conveniently evaluate their network capabilities and better plan their usage. The proposed method is based on a multiobjective formulation and implemented as an evolutionary genetic algorithm. Simulation results show that this algorithm achieves a better diversity among the operating points with lower computational cost when compared to an alternative approach.

  20. Improved environmental impact with diversion of perfusion bypass circuit to municipal solid waste.

    PubMed

    Debois, William; Prata, Jessica; Elmer, Barbara; Liu, Junli; Fominyam, Edward; Salemi, Arash

    2013-06-01

    The project goal was to reduce waste disposal volume, costs and minimize the negative impact that regulated waste treatment and disposal has on the environment. This was accomplished by diverting bypass circuits from the traditional regulated medical waste (RMW) to clear bag waste, or municipal solid waste (MSW). To qualify circuits to be disposed of through MSW stream, the circuits needed to be void of any free-flowing blood and be "responsibly clear." Traditionally the perfusion bypass circuit was emptied through the cardioplegia pump starting shortly after decannulation and heparin reversal. Up to 2000 mL of additional prime solution was added until the bypass circuit was rinsed clear. Three hundred sixty of 400 procedures (90%) had a complete circuit rinse and successful diversion to MSW. An additional 240 mL of processed cell salvage blood was available for transfusion. No additional time was spent in the operating room as a result of this procedure. Based on our procedure case volume and circuit weight of 15 pounds, almost 15,000 pounds (7.5 tons) of trash will be diverted from RMW. This technique represents another way for perfusionists to participate in sustainability efforts. Diverting the bypass circuit to clear bag waste results in a reduced environmental impact and annual cost savings. The treatment of RMW is associated with various environmental implications. MSW, or clear bag waste, on the other hand can now be disposed of in waste-to-energy facilities. This process not only releases a significantly less amount of carbon dioxide into the environment, but also helps generate renewable energy. Therefore, the bypass circuit diversion pilot project effectively demonstrates decreases in the carbon footprint of our organization and overall operating costs.

  1. Improved environmental impact with diversion of perfusion bypass circuit to municipal solid waste.

    PubMed

    Debois, William; Prata, Jessica; Elmer, Barbara; Liu, Junli; Fominyam, Edward; Salemi, Arash

    2013-06-01

    The project goal was to reduce waste disposal volume, costs and minimize the negative impact that regulated waste treatment and disposal has on the environment. This was accomplished by diverting bypass circuits from the traditional regulated medical waste (RMW) to clear bag waste, or municipal solid waste (MSW). To qualify circuits to be disposed of through MSW stream, the circuits needed to be void of any free-flowing blood and be "responsibly clear." Traditionally the perfusion bypass circuit was emptied through the cardioplegia pump starting shortly after decannulation and heparin reversal. Up to 2000 mL of additional prime solution was added until the bypass circuit was rinsed clear. Three hundred sixty of 400 procedures (90%) had a complete circuit rinse and successful diversion to MSW. An additional 240 mL of processed cell salvage blood was available for transfusion. No additional time was spent in the operating room as a result of this procedure. Based on our procedure case volume and circuit weight of 15 pounds, almost 15,000 pounds (7.5 tons) of trash will be diverted from RMW. This technique represents another way for perfusionists to participate in sustainability efforts. Diverting the bypass circuit to clear bag waste results in a reduced environmental impact and annual cost savings. The treatment of RMW is associated with various environmental implications. MSW, or clear bag waste, on the other hand can now be disposed of in waste-to-energy facilities. This process not only releases a significantly less amount of carbon dioxide into the environment, but also helps generate renewable energy. Therefore, the bypass circuit diversion pilot project effectively demonstrates decreases in the carbon footprint of our organization and overall operating costs. PMID:23930387

  2. Advanced Burner Reactor with Breed-and-Burn Thorium Blankets for Improved Economics and Resource Utilization

    SciTech Connect

    Greenspan, Ehud

    2015-11-04

    This study assesses the feasibility of designing Seed and Blanket (S&B) Sodium-cooled Fast Reactor (SFR) to generate a significant fraction of the core power from radial thorium fueled blankets that operate on the Breed-and-Burn (B&B) mode without exceeding the radiation damage constraint of presently verified cladding materials. The S&B core is designed to maximize the fraction of neutrons that radially leak from the seed (or “driver”) into the subcritical blanket and reduce neutron loss via axial leakage. The blanket in the S&B core makes beneficial use of the leaking neutrons for improved economics and resource utilization. A specific objective of this study is to maximize the fraction of core power that can be generated by the blanket without violating the thermal hydraulic and material constraints. Since the blanket fuel requires no reprocessing along with remote fuel fabrication, a larger fraction of power from the blanket will result in a smaller fuel recycling capacity and lower fuel cycle cost per unit of electricity generated. A unique synergism is found between a low conversion ratio (CR) seed and a B&B blanket fueled by thorium. Among several benefits, this synergism enables the very low leakage S&B cores to have small positive coolant voiding reactivity coefficient and large enough negative Doppler coefficient even when using inert matrix fuel for the seed. The benefits of this synergism are maximized when using an annular seed surrounded by an inner and outer thorium blankets. Among the high-performance S&B cores designed to benefit from this unique synergism are: (1) the ultra-long cycle core that features a cycle length of ~7 years; (2) the high-transmutation rate core where the seed fuel features a TRU CR of 0.0. Its TRU transmutation rate is comparable to that of the reference Advanced Burner Reactor (ABR) with CR of 0.5 and the thorium blanket can generate close to 60% of the core power; but requires only one sixth of the reprocessing and

  3. Advanced process modeling at the BCL smelter: Improving economic and environmental performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tripathi, Nagendra; Peek, Edgar; Stroud, Milton

    2011-01-01

    Since 1973 Bamangwato Concessions Limited (BCL) has operated a nickel-copper smelter in Selebi-Phikwe, Botswana. The smelter treats concentrates from local mines and various custom feed concentrates. The nickel throughput capacity of this smelter is constrained by a low nickel feed grade in its primary BCL concentrate. BCL contracted Xstrata Process Support (XPS) to assist in identifying key economic drivers to maximize revenue-generating opportunities. After the disclosure of essential BCL plant performance data XPS developed and utilized advanced metallurgical modeling techniques to identify production bottlenecks, calculate Ni, Cu, and Co recoveries, manage the slag volumes, increase the custom feed capacity, and perform various feasibility analyses for key unit process operations in the BCL smelter. The methodology for developing the process model and its application in contributing to the economic bottom line are outlined in this paper.

  4. Black-white differences in the economic value of improving health.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Kevin M; Topel, Robert H

    2005-01-01

    This article examines how differences in longevity over time and across groups add to the typical measures of economic progress and intergroup differentials. We focus on gains for and differences between groups defined both by race (black and white) and by gender, relying on willingness to pay as our measure of the economic value of gains in longevity. Measured at birth, the gains for white males between 1968 and 1998 were about 245,000 dollars per person, while the gains for black males were far larger, about 390,000 dollars per person. The gains for women were somewhat smaller, with white females gaining about 150,000 dollars per person and black females gaining about 305,000 dollars per person. Our estimates suggest that differences in income explain about 1/3 to 1/2 of the current black-white gap in longevity. PMID:15842095

  5. Genomic Signatures of North American Soybean Improvement Inform Diversity Enrichment Strategies and Clarify the Impact of Hybridization.

    PubMed

    Vaughn, Justin N; Li, Zenglu

    2016-09-08

    Crop improvement represents a long-running experiment in artificial selection on a complex trait, namely yield. How such selection relates to natural populations is unclear, but the analysis of domesticated populations could offer insights into the relative role of selection, drift, and recombination in all species facing major shifts in selective regimes. Because of the extreme autogamy exhibited by soybean (Glycine max), many "immortalized" genotypes of elite varieties spanning the last century have been preserved and characterized using ∼50,000 single nucleotide polymorphic (SNP) markers. Also due to autogamy, the history of North American soybean breeding can be roughly divided into pre- and posthybridization eras, allowing for direct interrogation of the role of recombination in improvement and selection. Here, we report on genome-wide characterization of the structure and history of North American soybean populations and the signature of selection in these populations. Supporting previous work, we find that maturity defines population structure. Though the diversity of North American ancestors is comparable to available landraces, prehybridization line selections resulted in a clonal structure that dominated early breeding and explains many of the reductions in diversity found in the initial generations of soybean hybridization. The rate of allele frequency change does not deviate sharply from neutral expectation, yet some regions bare hallmarks of strong selection, suggesting a highly variable range of selection strengths biased toward weak effects. We also discuss the importance of haplotypes as units of analysis when complex traits fall under novel selection regimes.

  6. Genomic Signatures of North American Soybean Improvement Inform Diversity Enrichment Strategies and Clarify the Impact of Hybridization

    PubMed Central

    Vaughn, Justin N.; Li, Zenglu

    2016-01-01

    Crop improvement represents a long-running experiment in artificial selection on a complex trait, namely yield. How such selection relates to natural populations is unclear, but the analysis of domesticated populations could offer insights into the relative role of selection, drift, and recombination in all species facing major shifts in selective regimes. Because of the extreme autogamy exhibited by soybean (Glycine max), many “immortalized” genotypes of elite varieties spanning the last century have been preserved and characterized using ∼50,000 single nucleotide polymorphic (SNP) markers. Also due to autogamy, the history of North American soybean breeding can be roughly divided into pre- and posthybridization eras, allowing for direct interrogation of the role of recombination in improvement and selection. Here, we report on genome-wide characterization of the structure and history of North American soybean populations and the signature of selection in these populations. Supporting previous work, we find that maturity defines population structure. Though the diversity of North American ancestors is comparable to available landraces, prehybridization line selections resulted in a clonal structure that dominated early breeding and explains many of the reductions in diversity found in the initial generations of soybean hybridization. The rate of allele frequency change does not deviate sharply from neutral expectation, yet some regions bare hallmarks of strong selection, suggesting a highly variable range of selection strengths biased toward weak effects. We also discuss the importance of haplotypes as units of analysis when complex traits fall under novel selection regimes. PMID:27402364

  7. Genomic Signatures of North American Soybean Improvement Inform Diversity Enrichment Strategies and Clarify the Impact of Hybridization.

    PubMed

    Vaughn, Justin N; Li, Zenglu

    2016-01-01

    Crop improvement represents a long-running experiment in artificial selection on a complex trait, namely yield. How such selection relates to natural populations is unclear, but the analysis of domesticated populations could offer insights into the relative role of selection, drift, and recombination in all species facing major shifts in selective regimes. Because of the extreme autogamy exhibited by soybean (Glycine max), many "immortalized" genotypes of elite varieties spanning the last century have been preserved and characterized using ∼50,000 single nucleotide polymorphic (SNP) markers. Also due to autogamy, the history of North American soybean breeding can be roughly divided into pre- and posthybridization eras, allowing for direct interrogation of the role of recombination in improvement and selection. Here, we report on genome-wide characterization of the structure and history of North American soybean populations and the signature of selection in these populations. Supporting previous work, we find that maturity defines population structure. Though the diversity of North American ancestors is comparable to available landraces, prehybridization line selections resulted in a clonal structure that dominated early breeding and explains many of the reductions in diversity found in the initial generations of soybean hybridization. The rate of allele frequency change does not deviate sharply from neutral expectation, yet some regions bare hallmarks of strong selection, suggesting a highly variable range of selection strengths biased toward weak effects. We also discuss the importance of haplotypes as units of analysis when complex traits fall under novel selection regimes. PMID:27402364

  8. Are social relationships a healthy influence on obesogenic behaviors among racially/ethnically diverse and socio-economically disadvantaged residents?

    PubMed Central

    Tamers, Sara L.; Okechukwu, Cassandra; Allen, Jennifer; Yang, May; Stoddard, Anne; Tucker-Seeley, Reginald; Sorensen, Glorian

    2012-01-01

    Objective To examine associations between social support and ties (family, friend, neighbors) individually and jointly with diet and physical activity among an ethnically-diverse, low-income population. Methods The Health in Common study (2005–2009) was designed to examine risk factors among individuals residing in low-income housing in the Boston, MA area. Cross-sectional surveys (n = 828) were administered in residents’ homes. Linear/logistic multivariable analyses were employed with clustering of individuals within housing sites controlled as a random effect. Results In multivariable analyses, total social support was significantly associated with higher red meat consumption per day (p = 0.029). Having more friends was significantly associated with more daily fruit and vegetable intake (p = 0.007) and higher levels of daily vigorous physical activity (p = 0.011). Those who reported having a greater number of family ties also reported higher daily consumption of sugary drinks (p = 0.013) and fast food (p = 0.011). More neighbor social ties was associated with more fast food per day (p = 0.024). Conclusions Social relationships can have both positive and negative associations with health behaviors. Understanding these relationships could help to inform the design of interventions that promote healthy behavior change among vulnerable populations. PMID:23200880

  9. Leading for Diversity: How School Leaders Can Improve Interethnic Relations. Educational Practice Report 7.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henze, Rosemary

    This report examines 21 case studies of schools where leaders took proactive steps to improve relations among different racial/ethnic groups. Among the dilemmas they encountered were staff issues (differential treatment based on race) and student issues (the composition of ethnic clubs). Roots of racial/ethnic conflict included segregation,…

  10. Exploring Folate Diversity in Wild and Primitive Potatoes for Modern Crop Improvement

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Bruce R.; Sathuvalli, Vidyasagar; Bamberg, John; Goyer, Aymeric

    2015-01-01

    Malnutrition is one of the world’s largest health concerns. Folate (also known as vitamin B9) is essential in the human diet, and without adequate folate intake, several serious health concerns, such as congenital birth defects and an increased risk of stroke and heart disease, can occur. Most people’s folate intake remains sub-optimal, even in countries that have a folic acid food fortification program in place. Staple crops, such as potatoes, represent an appropriate organism for biofortification through traditional breeding based on their worldwide consumption and the fact that modern cultivars only contain about 6% of the daily recommended intake of folate. To start breeding potatoes with enhanced folate content, high folate potato material must be identified. In this study, 250 individual plants from 77 accessions and 10 Solanum species were screened for their folate content using a tri-enzyme extraction and microbial assay. There was a 10-fold range of folate concentrations among individuals. Certain individuals within the species Solanum tuberosum subsp. andigenum, Solanum vernei and Solanum boliviense have the potential to produce more than double the folate concentrations of commercial cultivars, such as Russet Burbank. Our results show that tapping into the genetic diversity of potato is a promising approach to increase the folate content of this important crop. PMID:26670256

  11. Exploring Folate Diversity in Wild and Primitive Potatoes for Modern Crop Improvement.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Bruce R; Sathuvalli, Vidyasagar; Bamberg, John; Goyer, Aymeric

    2015-01-01

    Malnutrition is one of the world's largest health concerns. Folate (also known as vitamin B₉) is essential in the human diet, and without adequate folate intake, several serious health concerns, such as congenital birth defects and an increased risk of stroke and heart disease, can occur. Most people's folate intake remains sub-optimal, even in countries that have a folic acid food fortification program in place. Staple crops, such as potatoes, represent an appropriate organism for biofortification through traditional breeding based on their worldwide consumption and the fact that modern cultivars only contain about 6% of the daily recommended intake of folate. To start breeding potatoes with enhanced folate content, high folate potato material must be identified. In this study, 250 individual plants from 77 accessions and 10 Solanum species were screened for their folate content using a tri-enzyme extraction and microbial assay. There was a 10-fold range of folate concentrations among individuals. Certain individuals within the species Solanum tuberosum subsp. andigenum, Solanum vernei and Solanum boliviense have the potential to produce more than double the folate concentrations of commercial cultivars, such as Russet Burbank. Our results show that tapping into the genetic diversity of potato is a promising approach to increase the folate content of this important crop. PMID:26670256

  12. Dental school application timing: implications for full admission consideration and improving diversity of dental students.

    PubMed

    Aalboe, Joanna A; Harper, Christine; Beeman, Cynthia S; Paaso, Becky A

    2014-04-01

    The national underrepresentation of minorities in dental schools and the dental profession is a significant concern. Despite efforts over previous years, the number of practicing dentists from underrepresented minority (URM) groups has increased very little. Many dental schools have adopted a holistic admissions review process that uses noncognitive factors in an effort to increase diversity. However, application timing also significantly impacts the success of candidates. This study examined whether URM students' applying late in the application cycle contributes to their lower enrollment. This study attempted to fill a void in the dental admissions knowledge base by examining whether the timing of dental school applications in a rolling admissions system with a set number of interview spots favors those who apply early. De-identified applications (N=1,673) from one U.S. dental school in 2011 were examined. A binary logistic regression analysis revealed that URM applicants were significantly more likely to apply later in the admission cycle than non-URM applicants by a factor of 63 percent (p=0.001), increasing the competiveness for fewer remaining spots. These results suggest the need for pre-admission interventions and for future research to understand and address barriers that impact application timing.

  13. Improving Area Control Error Diversity Interchange (ADI) Program by Incorporating Congestion Constraints

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, Ning; Etingov, Pavel V.; Makarov, Yuri V.; Guttromson, Ross T.; McManus, Bart

    2010-04-30

    The area control error (ACE) determines how much a balancing authority (BA) needs to move its regulating units to meet mandatory control performance standard requirements. Regulation is an expensive resource that could cost several hundred million dollars a year for a BA. The amount of regulation needed in a system is increasing with more intermittent generation resources added to the system. The ACE diversity interchange (ADI) program provides a tool for reducing the regulation requirement by combining ACEs from several participating BAs followed by sharing the total ACE among all participating balancing areas. The effect is achieved as a result of the low statistical correlation between the original ACEs of participating BAs. A rule-based ADI approach has already been put into practice in the US Western Interconnection. The degree of actual ACE sharing is artificially limited because of the unknown redistribution of power flows and possible system congestion (these factors are not monitored in the existing ADI). This paper proposes a two-step linear programming (LP) ADI approach that incorporates congestion constraints. In the first step of the proposed LP ADI, the line transmission limits are enforced by setting up corresponding constraints. In the second step, the business fairness is pursued. Simulation is performed to compare the properties of the proposed LP ADI and the existing rule-based ADI. Favorable features, such as avoiding line limit violations and increasing the degree of possible ACE sharing, are observed for the proposed LP ADI.

  14. A Community Engagement Symposium to Prevent and Improve Stroke Outcomes in Diverse Communities

    PubMed Central

    Bharmal, Nazleen; Lucas-Wright, Anna “Aziza”; Vassar, Stefanie D.; Jones, Felica; Jones, Loretta; Wells, Rebekah; Cienega, Jason; Brown, Arleen F.

    2016-01-01

    Background Racial/ethnic minorities have a higher burden of stroke, but lower awareness and understanding of stroke and its risk factors. Our community–academic collaborative hosted a symposium in South Los Angeles to increase awareness about stroke, provide information on the Los Angeles Stroke Intervention and Research Program (SPIRP), and facilitate bidirectional communication between researchers and community stakeholders. Objectives We discuss our partnered approach to increase stroke awareness, elicit community perspectives and perceptions about stroke prevention and research participation, and increase community involvement in research using a community engagement symposium (CES). Methods We used a community-partnered participatory research (CPPR) conference framework to guide symposium planning, implementation and analysis. The morning session included clinical lectures, a panel of researchers describing LA SPIRP, and a panel presentation by stroke caregivers and survivors. In afternoon breakout sessions, attendees identified 1) community-based strategies to prevent stroke and 2) methods to increase recruitment of diverse populations in stroke research studies. Attendees were surveyed about stroke knowledge before and after the morning session. Data from breakout sessions were analyzed using content analysis and pile sorting to identify themes. Conclusions We found that the CES based on CPPR principles was effective method to increase short-term stroke awareness and stimulate discussion about stroke research among community members and community stakeholders who serve racial/ethnic minorities. PMID:27018364

  15. Economic consequences of improved temperature forecasts: An experiment with the Florida citrus growers (control group results). [weather forecasting

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1977-01-01

    A demonstration experiment is being planned to show that frost and freeze prediction improvements are possible utilizing timely Synchronous Meteorological Satellite temperature measurements and that this information can affect Florida citrus grower operations and decisions. An economic experiment was carried out which will monitor citrus growers' decisions, actions, costs and losses, and meteorological forecasts and actual weather events and will establish the economic benefits of improved temperature forecasts. A summary is given of the economic experiment, the results obtained to date, and the work which still remains to be done. Specifically, the experiment design is described in detail as are the developed data collection methodology and procedures, sampling plan, data reduction techniques, cost and loss models, establishment of frost severity measures, data obtained from citrus growers, National Weather Service, and Federal Crop Insurance Corp., resulting protection costs and crop losses for the control group sample, extrapolation of results of control group to the Florida citrus industry and the method for normalization of these results to a normal or average frost season so that results may be compared with anticipated similar results from test group measurements.

  16. A Global Evaluation of Coral Reef Management Performance: Are MPAs Producing Conservation and Socio-Economic Improvements?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hargreaves-Allen, Venetia; Mourato, Susana; Milner-Gulland, Eleanor Jane

    2011-04-01

    There is a consensus that Marine Protected Area (MPA) performance needs regular evaluation against clear criteria, incorporating counterfactual comparisons of ecological and socio-economic performance. However, these evaluations are scarce at the global level. We compiled self-reports from managers and researchers of 78 coral reef-based MPAs world-wide, on the conservation and welfare improvements that their MPAs provide. We developed a suite of performance measures including fulfilment of design and management criteria, achievement of aims, the cessation of banned or destructive activities, change in threats, and measurable ecological and socio-economic changes in outcomes, which we evaluated with respect to the MPA's age, geographical location and main aims. The sample was found to be broadly representative of MPAs generally, and suggests that many MPAs do not achieve certain fundamental aims including improvements in coral cover over time (in 25% of MPAs), and conflict reduction (in 25%). However, the large majority demonstrated improvements in terms of slowing coral loss, reducing destructive uses and increasing tourism and local employment, despite many being small, underfunded and facing multiple large scale threats beyond the control of managers. However spatial comparisons suggest that in some regions MPAs are simply mirroring outside changes, with demonstrates the importance of testing for additionality. MPA benefits do not appear to increase linearly over time. In combination with other management efforts and regulations, especially those relating to large scale threat reduction and targeted fisheries and conflict resolution instruments, MPAs are an important tool to achieve coral reef conservation globally. Given greater resources and changes which incorporate best available science, such as larger MPAs and no-take areas, networks and reduced user pressure, it is likely that performance could further be enhanced. Performance evaluation should test for

  17. A global evaluation of coral reef management performance: are MPAs producing conservation and socio-economic improvements?

    PubMed

    Hargreaves-Allen, Venetia; Mourato, Susana; Milner-Gulland, Eleanor Jane

    2011-04-01

    There is a consensus that Marine Protected Area (MPA) performance needs regular evaluation against clear criteria, incorporating counterfactual comparisons of ecological and socio-economic performance. However, these evaluations are scarce at the global level. We compiled self-reports from managers and researchers of 78 coral reef-based MPAs world-wide, on the conservation and welfare improvements that their MPAs provide. We developed a suite of performance measures including fulfilment of design and management criteria, achievement of aims, the cessation of banned or destructive activities, change in threats, and measurable ecological and socio-economic changes in outcomes, which we evaluated with respect to the MPA's age, geographical location and main aims. The sample was found to be broadly representative of MPAs generally, and suggests that many MPAs do not achieve certain fundamental aims including improvements in coral cover over time (in 25% of MPAs), and conflict reduction (in 25%). However, the large majority demonstrated improvements in terms of slowing coral loss, reducing destructive uses and increasing tourism and local employment, despite many being small, underfunded and facing multiple large scale threats beyond the control of managers. However spatial comparisons suggest that in some regions MPAs are simply mirroring outside changes, with demonstrates the importance of testing for additionality. MPA benefits do not appear to increase linearly over time. In combination with other management efforts and regulations, especially those relating to large scale threat reduction and targeted fisheries and conflict resolution instruments, MPAs are an important tool to achieve coral reef conservation globally. Given greater resources and changes which incorporate best available science, such as larger MPAs and no-take areas, networks and reduced user pressure, it is likely that performance could further be enhanced. Performance evaluation should test for

  18. A global evaluation of coral reef management performance: are MPAs producing conservation and socio-economic improvements?

    PubMed

    Hargreaves-Allen, Venetia; Mourato, Susana; Milner-Gulland, Eleanor Jane

    2011-04-01

    There is a consensus that Marine Protected Area (MPA) performance needs regular evaluation against clear criteria, incorporating counterfactual comparisons of ecological and socio-economic performance. However, these evaluations are scarce at the global level. We compiled self-reports from managers and researchers of 78 coral reef-based MPAs world-wide, on the conservation and welfare improvements that their MPAs provide. We developed a suite of performance measures including fulfilment of design and management criteria, achievement of aims, the cessation of banned or destructive activities, change in threats, and measurable ecological and socio-economic changes in outcomes, which we evaluated with respect to the MPA's age, geographical location and main aims. The sample was found to be broadly representative of MPAs generally, and suggests that many MPAs do not achieve certain fundamental aims including improvements in coral cover over time (in 25% of MPAs), and conflict reduction (in 25%). However, the large majority demonstrated improvements in terms of slowing coral loss, reducing destructive uses and increasing tourism and local employment, despite many being small, underfunded and facing multiple large scale threats beyond the control of managers. However spatial comparisons suggest that in some regions MPAs are simply mirroring outside changes, with demonstrates the importance of testing for additionality. MPA benefits do not appear to increase linearly over time. In combination with other management efforts and regulations, especially those relating to large scale threat reduction and targeted fisheries and conflict resolution instruments, MPAs are an important tool to achieve coral reef conservation globally. Given greater resources and changes which incorporate best available science, such as larger MPAs and no-take areas, networks and reduced user pressure, it is likely that performance could further be enhanced. Performance evaluation should test for

  19. Simultaneous modeling of visual saliency and value computation improves predictions of economic choice

    PubMed Central

    Towal, R. Blythe; Mormann, Milica; Koch, Christof

    2013-01-01

    Many decisions we make require visually identifying and evaluating numerous alternatives quickly. These usually vary in reward, or value, and in low-level visual properties, such as saliency. Both saliency and value influence the final decision. In particular, saliency affects fixation locations and durations, which are predictive of choices. However, it is unknown how saliency propagates to the final decision. Moreover, the relative influence of saliency and value is unclear. Here we address these questions with an integrated model that combines a perceptual decision process about where and when to look with an economic decision process about what to choose. The perceptual decision process is modeled as a drift–diffusion model (DDM) process for each alternative. Using psychophysical data from a multiple-alternative, forced-choice task, in which subjects have to pick one food item from a crowded display via eye movements, we test four models where each DDM process is driven by (i) saliency or (ii) value alone or (iii) an additive or (iv) a multiplicative combination of both. We find that models including both saliency and value weighted in a one-third to two-thirds ratio (saliency-to-value) significantly outperform models based on either quantity alone. These eye fixation patterns modulate an economic decision process, also described as a DDM process driven by value. Our combined model quantitatively explains fixation patterns and choices with similar or better accuracy than previous models, suggesting that visual saliency has a smaller, but significant, influence than value and that saliency affects choices indirectly through perceptual decisions that modulate economic decisions. PMID:24019496

  20. Mass media campaign improves cervical screening across all socio-economic groups.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Jenny O; Mullins, Robyn M; Siahpush, Mohammad; Spittal, Matthew J; Wakefield, Melanie

    2009-10-01

    Low socio-economic status (SES) has been associated with lower cervical screening rates. Mass media is one known strategy that can increase cervical screening participation. This study sought to determine whether a mass media campaign conducted in Victoria, Australia, in 2005 was effective in encouraging women across all SES groups to screen. Data were obtained from the Victorian Cervical Cytology Registry for each Pap test registered during 2005 and categorized into SES quintiles using the Index of Socio-Economic Advantage/Disadvantage. Negative binomial regression was used to determine the impact of the campaign on the weekly number of Pap tests and whether the media campaign had a differential effect by SES, after adjusting for the number of workdays per week, age group and time since previous test. Cervical screening increased 27% during the campaign period and was equally effective in encouraging screening across all SES groups, including low-SES women. Mass media campaigns can prompt increased rates of cervical screening among all women, not just those from more advantaged areas. Combining media with additional strategies targeted at low-SES women may help lessen the underlying differences in screening rates across SES.

  1. Genetic diversity of different populations and improved growth in the F1 hybrids in the swimming crab (Portunus trituberculatus).

    PubMed

    Gao, B Q; Liu, P; Li, J; Wang, Q Y; Li, X P

    2014-01-01

    The swimming crab, Portunus trituberculatus, is widely distributed throughout the coastal waters of Asian-Pacific nations and is an important economic species in this region. The aquaculture of swimming crabs has been plagued by problems associated with low growth rates, poor flesh quality, and weak disease resistance. To overcome these problems, selective breeding programs have been suggested as a means of genetically improving these traits in stock populations. In this study, we evaluated the genetic differentiation of 3 different geographical populations (Zhoushan: S; Laizhou Bay: L; and Haizhou Bay: H) using 8 polymorphic microsatellite loci. Nine strains of first filial generation were obtained, with 3 geographically populations as parental stock. We assessed the growth and survival rates of the F1 generation to identify new strains or breeds showing improvements in these economically important traits. Our results indicated that pairwise FST among populations was significantly higher than 0 (P = 0.0000) for every population pair, ranging from 0.0810 to 0.1083 for 3 different geographical populations. We observed significant heterosis for the growth and viability (survival) traits, although some strains (crossbred combinations) showed evidence of hybrid weakness in some growth measurements. One particular strain ("SL") outperformed other combinations, displaying the greatest extent of heterosis over the growth and viability (survival) traits. These results indicate that hybridization may be used to increase the performance of P. trituberculatus in aquaculture.

  2. Improving diversity in cancer research trials: the story of the Cancer Disparities Research Network.

    PubMed

    Simon, Melissa A; de la Riva, Erika E; Bergan, Raymond; Norbeck, Carrie; McKoy, June M; Kulesza, Piotr; Dong, XinQi; Schink, Julian; Fleisher, Linda

    2014-06-01

    The participation of racial and ethnic minorities and underserved populations in clinical trials is a critical link between scientific innovation and improvements in health care delivery and health outcomes. However, these population groups continue to be underrepresented in research. We describe the development of the Cancer Disparities Research Network (CDRN) to improve minority and underserved populations' participation in biobanking research. Between February and October 2011, we conducted a regional assessment to identify challenges and opportunities for cancer trials and biobanking research across the CDRN. Representatives from ten CDRN biorepository facilities completed an online survey assessing their facilities' minority biospecimen collection, biobanking practices, and education/outreach initiatives. Representatives of eight facilities also participated in stakeholder interviews. The majority (70%) of facilities reported that specimens were available for research, although only one tenth of these specimens were from non-White patients. Most facilities collected a patient's age, gender, race, medical history, and ethnicity with samples; however, less than half also collected family health history, education level, household income, or primary language spoken. In addition, few institutions collected Asian or Hispanic subgroup information. Only a few reported biospecimen collection outreach programs specifically targeting minority and underserved populations. Biospecimen directors and administrators indicated that funding, biospecimen sharing procedures, and standardization barriers limited their facilities from collaborating in biospecimen collection programs, despite their great interest. These findings suggest that the CDRN can provide opportunities for collaboration, resource sharing, and fostering of research ideas to address cancer disparities in biospecimen research. PMID:24519744

  3. The behavioralist as nutritionist: leveraging behavioral economics to improve child food choice and consumption.

    PubMed

    List, John A; Samek, Anya Savikhin

    2015-01-01

    We leverage behavioral economics to explore new approaches to tackling child food choice and consumption. Using a field experiment with >1500 children, we report several key insights. We find that incentives have large influences: in the control, 17% of children prefer the healthy snack, whereas introduction of small incentives increases take-up of the healthy snack to ∼75%. There is some evidence that the effects continue post-treatment, consistent with a model of habit formation. We find little evidence that the framing of incentives (loss vs. gain) matters. Educational messaging alone has little effect, but we observe a combined effect of messaging and incentives: together they provide an important influence on food choice. PMID:25530206

  4. Attention Diversion Improves Response Inhibition of Immediate Reward, But Only When it Is Beneficial: An fMRI Study.

    PubMed

    Scalzo, Franco; O'Connor, David A; Orr, Catherine; Murphy, Kevin; Hester, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Deficits of self-control are associated with a number of mental state disorders. The ability to direct attention away from an alluring stimulus appears to aid inhibition of an impulsive response. However, further functional imaging research is required to assess the impact of shifts in attention on self-regulating processes. We varied the level of attentional disengagement in an functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)-based Go/No-go task to probe whether diversion of attention away from alluring stimuli facilitates response inhibition. We used the attention-grabbing characteristic of faces to exogenously direct attention away from stimuli and investigated the relative importance of attention and response inhibition mechanisms under different delayed reward scenarios [i.e., where forgoing an immediate reward ($1) led to a higher ($10) or no payoff in the future]. We found that diverting attention improved response inhibition performance, but only when resistance to an alluring stimulus led to delayed reward. Region of interest analyses indicated significant increased activity in posterior right inferior frontal gyrus during successful No-go trials for delayed reward trials compared to no delayed reward trials, and significant reduction in activity in the superior temporal gyri and left caudate in contexts of high attentional diversion. Our findings imply that strategies that increase the perceived benefits of response inhibition might assist individuals in abstaining from problematic impulsive behaviors. PMID:27616988

  5. Proposed fish passage improvements at Three Mile Falls Diversion Dam, Umatilla River, Oregon: Finding of no significant impact

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-05-01

    The Bureau of Reclamation proposes to administer the construction of fish passage and protective facilities at Three Mile Falls Diversion Dam on the Umatilla River in Oregon to increase the numbers of anadromous fish. The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) proposes to provide funding for the project. These agencies' actions would implement section 904(d) of the Northwest Power Planning Council's Columbia River Basin Fish and Wildlife Program which addresses the provision of offsite enhancement to compensate for fish and wildlife losses caused by hydroelectric project development and operations throughout the Columbia River Basin. This Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) is the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) decision document for both agencies. The proposed action would improve both upstream and downstream passage by providing a new right bank ladder on Three Mile Falls Diversion Dam, modifying the existing left bank ladder, and installing rotary drum fish screens and related structures on the adjacent West Extension Irrigation District (WEID) Canal. Four other alternatives are considered in the environmental assessment (EA): a concrete apron plus a left bank ladder; a cap on the crest of the dam plus a left bank ladder; dam removal; and no action. 5 figs., 6 tabs.

  6. Attention Diversion Improves Response Inhibition of Immediate Reward, But Only When it Is Beneficial: An fMRI Study

    PubMed Central

    Scalzo, Franco; O’Connor, David A.; Orr, Catherine; Murphy, Kevin; Hester, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Deficits of self-control are associated with a number of mental state disorders. The ability to direct attention away from an alluring stimulus appears to aid inhibition of an impulsive response. However, further functional imaging research is required to assess the impact of shifts in attention on self-regulating processes. We varied the level of attentional disengagement in an functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)-based Go/No-go task to probe whether diversion of attention away from alluring stimuli facilitates response inhibition. We used the attention-grabbing characteristic of faces to exogenously direct attention away from stimuli and investigated the relative importance of attention and response inhibition mechanisms under different delayed reward scenarios [i.e., where forgoing an immediate reward ($1) led to a higher ($10) or no payoff in the future]. We found that diverting attention improved response inhibition performance, but only when resistance to an alluring stimulus led to delayed reward. Region of interest analyses indicated significant increased activity in posterior right inferior frontal gyrus during successful No-go trials for delayed reward trials compared to no delayed reward trials, and significant reduction in activity in the superior temporal gyri and left caudate in contexts of high attentional diversion. Our findings imply that strategies that increase the perceived benefits of response inhibition might assist individuals in abstaining from problematic impulsive behaviors.

  7. Attention Diversion Improves Response Inhibition of Immediate Reward, But Only When it Is Beneficial: An fMRI Study

    PubMed Central

    Scalzo, Franco; O’Connor, David A.; Orr, Catherine; Murphy, Kevin; Hester, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Deficits of self-control are associated with a number of mental state disorders. The ability to direct attention away from an alluring stimulus appears to aid inhibition of an impulsive response. However, further functional imaging research is required to assess the impact of shifts in attention on self-regulating processes. We varied the level of attentional disengagement in an functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)-based Go/No-go task to probe whether diversion of attention away from alluring stimuli facilitates response inhibition. We used the attention-grabbing characteristic of faces to exogenously direct attention away from stimuli and investigated the relative importance of attention and response inhibition mechanisms under different delayed reward scenarios [i.e., where forgoing an immediate reward ($1) led to a higher ($10) or no payoff in the future]. We found that diverting attention improved response inhibition performance, but only when resistance to an alluring stimulus led to delayed reward. Region of interest analyses indicated significant increased activity in posterior right inferior frontal gyrus during successful No-go trials for delayed reward trials compared to no delayed reward trials, and significant reduction in activity in the superior temporal gyri and left caudate in contexts of high attentional diversion. Our findings imply that strategies that increase the perceived benefits of response inhibition might assist individuals in abstaining from problematic impulsive behaviors. PMID:27616988

  8. Improved techniques for fluid diversion in oil recovery. Quarterly technical progress report, July 1, 1995--September 30, 1995

    SciTech Connect

    Seright, R.S.

    1995-10-01

    This three-year project has two general objectives. The first objective is to compare the effectiveness of gels in fluid diversion with those of other types of processes. Several different types of fluid-diversion processes are being compared, including those using gels, foams, emulsions, and particulates. The ultimate goals of these comparisons are to (1) establish which of these processes is most effective in a given application and (2) determine whether aspects of one process can be combined with those of other processes to improve performance. Analyses are being performed to assess where the various diverting agents will be most effective (e.g., in fractured vs. unfractured wells, deep vs. near-wellbore applications, reservoirs with vs. without crossflow, or injection wells vs. production wells). Experiments are being performed to verify which materials are the most effective in entering and blocking high-permeability zones. Another objective of the project is to identify the mechanisms by which materials (particularly gels) selectively reduce permeability to water more than to oil. In addition to establishing why this occurs, our research attempts to identify materials and conditions that maximize this disproportionate permeability reduction.

  9. Projected techno-economic improvements for advanced solar thermal power plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fujita, T.; Manvi, R.; Roschke, E. J.

    1979-01-01

    The projected characteristics of solar thermal power plants (with outputs up to 10 MWe) employing promising advanced technology subsystems/components are compared to current (or pre-1985) steam-Rankine systems. Improvements accruing to advanced technology development options are delineated. The improvements derived from advanced systems result primarily from achieving high efficiencies via solar collector systems which (1) capture a large portion of the available insolation and (2) concentrate this captured solar flux to attain high temperatures required for high heat engine/energy conversion performance. The most efficient solar collector systems employ two-axis tracking. Attractive systems include the central receiver/heliostat and the parabolic dish.

  10. Economic analysis of interventions to improve village chicken production in Myanmar.

    PubMed

    Henning, J; Morton, J; Pym, R; Hla, T; Sunn, K; Meers, J

    2013-07-01

    A cost-benefit analysis using deterministic and stochastic modelling was conducted to identify the net benefits for households that adopt (1) vaccination of individual birds against Newcastle disease (ND) or (2) improved management of chick rearing by providing coops for the protection of chicks from predation and chick starter feed inside a creep feeder to support chicks' nutrition in village chicken flocks in Myanmar. Partial budgeting was used to assess the additional costs and benefits associated with each of the two interventions tested relative to neither strategy. In the deterministic model, over the first 3 years after the introduction of the interventions, the cumulative sum of the net differences from neither strategy was 13,189Kyat for ND vaccination and 77,645Kyat for improved chick management (effective exchange rate in 2005: 1000Kyat=1$US). Both interventions were also profitable after discounting over a 10-year period; Net Present Values for ND vaccination and improved chick management were 30,791 and 167,825Kyat, respectively. The Benefit-Cost Ratio for ND vaccination was very high (28.8). This was lower for improved chick management, due to greater costs of the intervention, but still favourable at 4.7. Using both interventions concurrently yielded a Net Present Value of 470,543Kyat and a Benefit-Cost Ratio of 11.2 over the 10-year period in the deterministic model. Using the stochastic model, for the first 3 years following the introduction of the interventions, the mean cumulative sums of the net difference were similar to those values obtained from the deterministic model. Sensitivity analysis indicated that the cumulative net differences were strongly influenced by grower bird sale income, particularly under improved chick management. The effects of the strategies on odds of households selling and consuming birds after 7 months, and numbers of birds being sold or consumed after this period also influenced profitability. Cost variations for

  11. Strategies to Improve an Urban School in a Lowering Socio-Economic Community.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wingel, William J.

    This practicum report presents a detailed account of a project by an elementary school principal in designing, implementing, and evaluating a comprehensive improvement program to alleviate problems which have occurred as a result of the transitional state of the neighborhood at the Clara Barton Public School, in the school district of…

  12. Improving Education Achievement and Attainment in Luxembourg. OECD Economics Department Working Papers, No. 508

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carey, David; Ernst, Ekkehard

    2006-01-01

    Improving education achievement in Luxembourg is a priority for strengthening productivity growth and enhancing residents' employment prospects in the private sector, where employers mainly hire cross-border workers. Student achievement in Luxembourg is below the OECD average according to the 2003 OECD PISA study, with the performance gap between…

  13. Improving the complementary methods to estimate evapotranspiration under diverse climatic and physical conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anayah, F. M.; Kaluarachchi, J. J.

    2014-06-01

    Reliable estimation of evapotranspiration (ET) is important for the purpose of water resources planning and management. Complementary methods, including complementary relationship areal evapotranspiration (CRAE), advection aridity (AA) and Granger and Gray (GG), have been used to estimate ET because these methods are simple and practical in estimating regional ET using meteorological data only. However, prior studies have found limitations in these methods especially in contrasting climates. This study aims to develop a calibration-free universal method using the complementary relationships to compute regional ET in contrasting climatic and physical conditions with meteorological data only. The proposed methodology consists of a systematic sensitivity analysis using the existing complementary methods. This work used 34 global FLUXNET sites where eddy covariance (EC) fluxes of ET are available for validation. A total of 33 alternative model variations from the original complementary methods were proposed. Further analysis using statistical methods and simplified climatic class definitions produced one distinctly improved GG-model-based alternative. The proposed model produced a single-step ET formulation with results equal to or better than the recent studies using data-intensive, classical methods. Average root mean square error (RMSE), mean absolute bias (BIAS) and R2 (coefficient of determination) across 34 global sites were 20.57 mm month-1, 10.55 mm month-1 and 0.64, respectively. The proposed model showed a step forward toward predicting ET in large river basins with limited data and requiring no calibration.

  14. Improving the complementary methods to estimate evapotranspiration under diverse climatic and physical conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anayah, F. M.; Kaluarachchi, J. J.

    2013-11-01

    Reliable estimation of evapotranspiration (ET) is important for the purpose of water resources planning and management. Complementary methods, including Complementary Relationship Areal Evapotranspiration (CRAE), Advection-Aridity (AA) and Granger and Gray (GG), have been used to estimate ET because these methods are simple and practical in estimating regional ET using meteorological data only. However, prior studies have found limitations in these methods especially in contrasting climates. This study aims to develop a calibration-free universal model using the complementary relationships to compute regional ET in contrasting climatic and physical conditions with meteorological data only. The proposed methodology consists of a systematic sensitivity analysis using the existing complementary methods. This work used 34 global FLUXNET sites where eddy covariance (EC) fluxes of ET are available for validation. A total of 33 alternative model variations from the original complementary methods were proposed. Further analysis using statistical methods and simplified climatic class definitions produced one distinctly improved GG-model based alternative. The proposed model produced a single-step ET formulation with results equal or better than the recent studies using data-intensive, classical methods. Average root mean square error (RMSE), mean absolute bias (BIAS) and R2 values across 34 global sites were 20.57 mm month-1, 10.55 mm month-1 and 0.64, respectively. The proposed model showed a step forward toward predicting ET in large river basins with limited data and requiring no calibration.

  15. Advancing Research on Racial–Ethnic Health Disparities: Improving Measurement Equivalence in Studies with Diverse Samples

    PubMed Central

    Landrine, Hope; Corral, Irma

    2014-01-01

    To conduct meaningful, epidemiologic research on racial–ethnic health disparities, racial–ethnic samples must be rendered equivalent on other social status and contextual variables via statistical controls of those extraneous factors. The racial–ethnic groups must also be equally familiar with and have similar responses to the methods and measures used to collect health data, must have equal opportunity to participate in the research, and must be equally representative of their respective populations. In the absence of such measurement equivalence, studies of racial–ethnic health disparities are confounded by a plethora of unmeasured, uncontrolled correlates of race–ethnicity. Those correlates render the samples, methods, and measures incomparable across racial–ethnic groups, and diminish the ability to attribute health differences discovered to race–ethnicity vs. to its correlates. This paper reviews the non-equivalent yet normative samples, methodologies and measures used in epidemiologic studies of racial–ethnic health disparities, and provides concrete suggestions for improving sample, method, and scalar measurement equivalence. PMID:25566524

  16. Hierarchical Mentoring: A Transformative Strategy for Improving Diversity and Retention in Undergraduate STEM Disciplines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Zakiya S.; Holmes, Lakenya; Degravelles, Karin; Sylvain, Monica R.; Batiste, Lisa; Johnson, Misty; McGuire, Saundra Y.; Pang, Su Seng; Warner, Isiah M.

    2012-02-01

    In the United States, less than half of the students who enter into science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) undergraduate curricula as freshmen will actually graduate with a STEM degree. There is even greater disparity in the national STEM graduation rates of students from underrepresented groups with approximately three-fourths of minority students leaving STEM disciplines at the undergraduate level. A host of programs have been designed and implemented to model best practices in retaining students in STEM disciplines. The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Professors Program at Louisiana State University, under leadership of HHMI Professor Isiah M. Warner, represents one of these programs and reports on a mentoring model that addresses the key factors that impact STEM student attrition at the undergraduate level. By integrating mentoring and strategic academic interventions into a structured research program, an innovative model has been developed to guide STEM undergraduate majors in adopting the metacognitive strategies that allow them to excel in their programs of study, as they learn to appreciate and understand science more completely. Comparisons of the persistence of participants and nonparticipants in STEM curricular, at the host university and with other national universities and colleges, show the impact of the model's salient features on improving STEM retention through graduation for all students, particularly those from underrepresented groups.

  17. Template-Directed Instrumentation Reduces Cost and Improves Efficiency for Total Knee Arthroplasty: An Economic Decision Analysis and Pilot Study.

    PubMed

    McLawhorn, Alexander S; Carroll, Kaitlin M; Blevins, Jason L; DeNegre, Scott T; Mayman, David J; Jerabek, Seth A

    2015-10-01

    Template-directed instrumentation (TDI) for total knee arthroplasty (TKA) may streamline operating room (OR) workflow and reduce costs by preselecting implants and minimizing instrument tray burden. A decision model simulated the economics of TDI. Sensitivity analyses determined thresholds for model variables to ensure TDI success. A clinical pilot was reviewed. The accuracy of preoperative templates was validated, and 20 consecutive primary TKAs were performed using TDI. The model determined that preoperative component size estimation should be accurate to ±1 implant size for 50% of TKAs to implement TDI. The pilot showed that preoperative template accuracy exceeded 97%. There were statistically significant improvements in OR turnover time and in-room time for TDI compared to an historical cohort of TKAs. TDI reduces costs and improves OR efficiency. PMID:26021908

  18. Template-Directed Instrumentation Reduces Cost and Improves Efficiency for Total Knee Arthroplasty: An Economic Decision Analysis and Pilot Study.

    PubMed

    McLawhorn, Alexander S; Carroll, Kaitlin M; Blevins, Jason L; DeNegre, Scott T; Mayman, David J; Jerabek, Seth A

    2015-10-01

    Template-directed instrumentation (TDI) for total knee arthroplasty (TKA) may streamline operating room (OR) workflow and reduce costs by preselecting implants and minimizing instrument tray burden. A decision model simulated the economics of TDI. Sensitivity analyses determined thresholds for model variables to ensure TDI success. A clinical pilot was reviewed. The accuracy of preoperative templates was validated, and 20 consecutive primary TKAs were performed using TDI. The model determined that preoperative component size estimation should be accurate to ±1 implant size for 50% of TKAs to implement TDI. The pilot showed that preoperative template accuracy exceeded 97%. There were statistically significant improvements in OR turnover time and in-room time for TDI compared to an historical cohort of TKAs. TDI reduces costs and improves OR efficiency.

  19. Economic value of improved quantification in global sources and sinks of carbon dioxide.

    PubMed

    Durant, A J; Le Quéré, C; Hope, C; Friend, A D

    2011-05-28

    On average, about 45 per cent of global annual anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO(2)) emissions remain in the atmosphere, while the remainder are taken up by carbon reservoirs on land and in the oceans-the CO(2) 'sinks'. As sink size and dynamics are highly variable in space and time, cross-verification of reported anthropogenic CO(2) emissions with atmospheric CO(2) measurements is challenging. Highly variable CO(2) sinks also limit the capability to detect anomolous changes in natural carbon reservoirs. This paper argues that significant uncertainty reduction in annual estimates of the global carbon balance could be achieved rapidly through coordinated up-scaling of existing methods, and that this uncertainty reduction would provide incentive for accurate reporting of CO(2) emissions at the country level. We estimate that if 5 per cent of global CO(2) emissions go unreported and undetected, the associated marginal economic impacts could reach approximately US$20 billion each year by 2050. The net present day value of these impacts aggregated until 2200, and discounted back to the present would have a mean value exceeding US$10 trillion. The costs of potential impacts of unreported emissions far outweigh the costs of enhancement of measurement infrastructure to reduce uncertainty in the global carbon balance.

  20. Salinity Tolerance Mechanism of Economic Halophytes From Physiological to Molecular Hierarchy for Improving Food Quality.

    PubMed

    Xu, Chongzhi; Tang, Xiaoli; Shao, Hongbo; Wang, Hongyan

    2016-06-01

    Soil salinity is becoming the key constraints factor to agricultural production. Therefore, the plant especially the crops possessing capacities of salt tolerance will be of great economic significance. The adaptation or tolerance of plant to salinity stress involves a series of physiological, metabolic and molecular mechanisms. Halophytes are the kind of organisms which acquire special salt tolerance mechanisms to respond to the salt tress and ensure normal growth and development under saline conditions in their lengthy evolutionary adaptation, so understanding how halophytes respond to salinity stress will provide us with methods and tactics to foster and develop salt resistant varieties of crops. The strategies in physiological and molecular level adopted by halophytes are various including the changes in photosynthetic and transpiration rate, the sequestration of Na+ to extracellular or vacuole, the regulation of stomata aperture and stomatal density, the accumulation and synthesis of the phytohormones as well as the relevant gene expression underlying these physiological traits, such as the stress signal transduction, the regulation of the transcription factors, the activation and expression of the transporter genes, the activation or inhibition of the synthetases and so on. This review focuses on the research advances of the regulating mechanisms in halophytes from physiological to molecular, which render the halophytes tolerance and adaption to salinity stress. PMID:27252587

  1. Predicting positive mental health in internally displaced persons in Indonesia: the roles of economic improvement and exposure to violent conflict.

    PubMed

    Saragih Turnip, Sherly; Sörbom, Dag; Hauff, Edvard

    2016-01-01

    Positive mental health, rather than just the absence of mental illness, is rarely investigated among the internally displaced persons (IDPs) affected by violent conflict in low-income countries. The purpose of this study was to investigate a model that could explain the interrelationship between factors contributing to positive mental health in displaced populations. In a longitudinal study we examine poverty, exposure to traumatic events and the change of material well-being after one year. We collected data in two consecutive years (2005 and 2006) from a community-based sample of IDPs in Ambon, Indonesia, through face-to-face structured interviews with consenting adults. Participants of this study were IDPs lived in Ambon during the violent conflict period. We interviewed 471 IDPs in the first year and reinterviewed 399 (85%) of the same subjects in the second year. The IDPs possessed good sense of coherence and subjective well-being. Our final model, which was generated by the use of structural equation modeling, fits the data well (χ(2) = 52.51, df = 45, p = .21, CFI = .99, RMSEA = .019). Exposure to violent conflict had a negative impact on IDPs' mental health initially and better economic conditions improved it (r = -.30 and .29 respectively). Mental health status one year previously was a strong predictor of future mental health, followed by individual economic growth in the past year (r = .43 and .29 respectively). On a group level the IDPs were resilient and adaptive to survive in adverse living conditions after devastating violent conflict, and the economic improvement contributed to it. PMID:26059612

  2. Predicting positive mental health in internally displaced persons in Indonesia: the roles of economic improvement and exposure to violent conflict.

    PubMed

    Saragih Turnip, Sherly; Sörbom, Dag; Hauff, Edvard

    2016-01-01

    Positive mental health, rather than just the absence of mental illness, is rarely investigated among the internally displaced persons (IDPs) affected by violent conflict in low-income countries. The purpose of this study was to investigate a model that could explain the interrelationship between factors contributing to positive mental health in displaced populations. In a longitudinal study we examine poverty, exposure to traumatic events and the change of material well-being after one year. We collected data in two consecutive years (2005 and 2006) from a community-based sample of IDPs in Ambon, Indonesia, through face-to-face structured interviews with consenting adults. Participants of this study were IDPs lived in Ambon during the violent conflict period. We interviewed 471 IDPs in the first year and reinterviewed 399 (85%) of the same subjects in the second year. The IDPs possessed good sense of coherence and subjective well-being. Our final model, which was generated by the use of structural equation modeling, fits the data well (χ(2) = 52.51, df = 45, p = .21, CFI = .99, RMSEA = .019). Exposure to violent conflict had a negative impact on IDPs' mental health initially and better economic conditions improved it (r = -.30 and .29 respectively). Mental health status one year previously was a strong predictor of future mental health, followed by individual economic growth in the past year (r = .43 and .29 respectively). On a group level the IDPs were resilient and adaptive to survive in adverse living conditions after devastating violent conflict, and the economic improvement contributed to it.

  3. Modeling Water Utility Investments and Improving Regulatory Policies using Economic Optimisation in England and Wales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Padula, S.; Harou, J. J.

    2012-12-01

    Water utilities in England and Wales are regulated natural monopolies called 'water companies'. Water companies must obtain periodic regulatory approval for all investments (new supply infrastructure or demand management measures). Both water companies and their regulators use results from least economic cost capacity expansion optimisation models to develop or assess water supply investment plans. This presentation first describes the formulation of a flexible supply-demand planning capacity expansion model for water system planning. The model uses a mixed integer linear programming (MILP) formulation to choose the least-cost schedule of future supply schemes (reservoirs, desalination plants, etc.) and demand management (DM) measures (leakage reduction, water efficiency and metering options) and bulk transfers. Decisions include what schemes to implement, when to do so, how to size schemes and how much to use each scheme during each year of an n-year long planning horizon (typically 30 years). In addition to capital and operating (fixed and variable) costs, the estimated social and environmental costs of schemes are considered. Each proposed scheme is costed discretely at one or more capacities following regulatory guidelines. The model uses a node-link network structure: water demand nodes are connected to supply and demand management (DM) options (represented as nodes) or to other demand nodes (transfers). Yields from existing and proposed are estimated separately using detailed water resource system simulation models evaluated over the historical period. The model simultaneously considers multiple demand scenarios to ensure demands are met at required reliability levels; use levels of each scheme are evaluated for each demand scenario and weighted by scenario likelihood so that operating costs are accurately evaluated. Multiple interdependency relationships between schemes (pre-requisites, mutual exclusivity, start dates, etc.) can be accounted for by

  4. Economic Benefits of Improved Water Quality: Public Perceptions of Option and Preservation Values

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouwes, Nicolaas W., Sr.

    The primary objective of this book is to report the authors‧ research approach to the estimation of benefits of water quality improvements in the South Platte River of northeastern Colorado. Benefits included a “consumer surplus” from enhanced enjoyment of water-based recreation, an “option value” of assured choice of future recreation use, and a “preservation value” of the ecosystem and its bequest to future generations. Concepts such as preservation and option value benefits have been often mentioned but seldom estimated in natural resources research. The authors have met their objective by providing the reader with a detailed description of their research without being tedious.

  5. Improving Conceptual Design for Launch Vehicles. The Bimese Concept: A Study of Mission and Economic Options

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olds, John R.; Tooley, Jeffrey

    1999-01-01

    This report summarizes key activities conducted in the third and final year of the cooperative agreement NCC1-229 entitled "Improving Conceptual Design for Launch Vehicles." This project has been funded by the Vehicle Analysis Branch at NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, VA. Work has been performed by the Space Systems Design Lab (SSDL) at the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA. Accomplishments during the first and second years of this project have been previously reported in annual progress reports. This report will focus on the third and final year of the three year activity.

  6. Economic support to improve tuberculosis treatment outcomes in South Africa: a pragmatic cluster-randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Poverty undermines adherence to tuberculosis treatment. Economic support may both encourage and enable patients to complete treatment. In South Africa, which carries a high burden of tuberculosis, such support may improve the currently poor outcomes of patients on tuberculosis treatment. The aim of this study was to test the feasibility and effectiveness of delivering economic support to patients with pulmonary tuberculosis in a high-burden province of South Africa. Methods This was a pragmatic, unblinded, two-arm cluster-randomized controlled trial, where 20 public sector clinics acted as clusters. Patients with pulmonary tuberculosis in intervention clinics (n = 2,107) were offered a monthly voucher of ZAR120.00 (approximately US$15) until the completion of their treatment. Vouchers were redeemed at local shops for foodstuffs. Patients in control clinics (n = 1,984) received usual tuberculosis care. Results Intention to treat analysis showed a small but non-significant improvement in treatment success rates in intervention clinics (intervention 76.2%; control 70.7%; risk difference 5.6% (95% confidence interval: -1.2%, 12.3%), P = 0.107). Low fidelity to the intervention meant that 36.2% of eligible patients did not receive a voucher at all, 32.3% received a voucher for between one and three months and 31.5% received a voucher for four to eight months of treatment. There was a strong dose–response relationship between frequency of receipt of the voucher and treatment success (P <0.001). Conclusions Our pragmatic trial has shown that, in the real world setting of public sector clinics in South Africa, economic support to patients with tuberculosis does not significantly improve outcomes on treatment. However, the low fidelity to the delivery of our voucher meant that a third of eligible patients did not receive it. Among patients in intervention clinics who received the voucher at least once, treatment success rates were significantly

  7. Economic Evaluation of Quality-of-Life Improvement with Second-Generation Antihistamines and Montelukast in Patients with Allergic Rhinitis

    PubMed Central

    Saverno, Kim R.; Seal, Brian; Goodman, Michael J.; Meyer, Kellie

    2009-01-01

    Background Allergic rhinitis causes significant economic losses and substantial reductions in quality of life. Improving a patient's symptoms can therefore enhance the patient's quality of life. Objective To measure the relative cost-effectiveness of prescription second-generation antihistamines (levocetirizine, desloratadine, and fexofenadine) and montelukast based on their impact on quality of life in patients with uncomplicated allergic rhinitis. Methods A retrospective, cost-effectiveness model was constructed using 1-year costs to managed care payers and using the Rhinoconjunctivitis Quality of Life Questionnaire to measure the quality of life in patients taking prescription second-generation antihistamines or montelukast for the treatment of allergic rhinitis. Clinical trial results for levocetirizine, desloratadine, fexofenadine (brand and generic), or montelukast were combined as standardized mean differences to create a pooled effectiveness measure. The costs of prescription drugs and physician office visits for allergic rhinitis were used as direct costs measures. Sensitivity was assessed by a Monte Carlo simulation run 1000 times. Results All the drugs in the study showed significant improvement in quality of life, with levocetirizine showing the greatest improvement. The incremental cost-effectiveness of levocetirizine dominated montelukast (incremental cost-effective ratio, −1317; 95% confidence interval, −7471, −212). The incremental cost-effectiveness favored levocetirizine compared with desloratadine and branded fexofenadine. Conclusion There are significant differences in the cost-effectiveness of various oral prescription agents with regard to improving quality of life of patients with allergic rhinitis. PMID:25126304

  8. Using the economics of certification to improve the safety and quality of male circumcision in developing countries: three models of implementation.

    PubMed

    Richards, Michael R

    2012-03-01

    Although male circumcision (MC) has been a widespread practice in some regions, while relatively new in others, it has recently ascended in popularity as a HIV-reduction intervention, particularly in areas with high rates of HIV but low rates of MC. However, the uptake and potential effectiveness of MC may be hampered by uneven levels of provider training and procedure skill within developing country settings. Indeed, this procedure that is otherwise considered simple and safe has witnessed complication rates as high as 25-35% in some areas, leaving some men with irreversible injuries. To improve the transparency of procedure quality for prospective patients, I borrow from a classic economics approach and advocate a new application in the form of provider certification. Building on some experience in the healthcare systems and economic rationale of high-income counties, I explore the potential for certifying providers of MC in low-income countries and compare and contrast three models of implementation: government agency, private certifiers and private MC device manufacturers. The hope is that increased transparency of provider quality through any or all three types of certifying programmes can better assist local men as they navigate this otherwise complex and unclear medical care market. As more resources are being devoted to MC scale up, I argue that certification should be considered for incorporation as a means of complementing both current and future efforts in order to enhance the effectiveness of MC campaigns. The two models based on privatized certification, as opposed to having the local government underwrite the intervention, may prove most useful when public or philanthropic funding is volatile or incomplete for a given location. The timing for MC campaign adoption and desired speed of scale up may vary across countries in ways that international assistance efforts cannot always immediately and flexibly adapt to. As such, the role of the diverse MC

  9. Using the economics of certification to improve the safety and quality of male circumcision in developing countries: three models of implementation.

    PubMed

    Richards, Michael R

    2012-03-01

    Although male circumcision (MC) has been a widespread practice in some regions, while relatively new in others, it has recently ascended in popularity as a HIV-reduction intervention, particularly in areas with high rates of HIV but low rates of MC. However, the uptake and potential effectiveness of MC may be hampered by uneven levels of provider training and procedure skill within developing country settings. Indeed, this procedure that is otherwise considered simple and safe has witnessed complication rates as high as 25-35% in some areas, leaving some men with irreversible injuries. To improve the transparency of procedure quality for prospective patients, I borrow from a classic economics approach and advocate a new application in the form of provider certification. Building on some experience in the healthcare systems and economic rationale of high-income counties, I explore the potential for certifying providers of MC in low-income countries and compare and contrast three models of implementation: government agency, private certifiers and private MC device manufacturers. The hope is that increased transparency of provider quality through any or all three types of certifying programmes can better assist local men as they navigate this otherwise complex and unclear medical care market. As more resources are being devoted to MC scale up, I argue that certification should be considered for incorporation as a means of complementing both current and future efforts in order to enhance the effectiveness of MC campaigns. The two models based on privatized certification, as opposed to having the local government underwrite the intervention, may prove most useful when public or philanthropic funding is volatile or incomplete for a given location. The timing for MC campaign adoption and desired speed of scale up may vary across countries in ways that international assistance efforts cannot always immediately and flexibly adapt to. As such, the role of the diverse MC

  10. Economic support to improve tuberculosis treatment outcomes in South Africa: a qualitative process evaluation of a cluster randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Poverty undermines the adherence of patients to tuberculosis treatment. A pragmatic cluster randomized controlled trial was conducted to investigate the extent to which economic support in the form of a voucher would improve patients’ adherence to treatment, and their treatment outcomes. Although the trial showed a modest improvement in the treatment success rates of the intervention group, this was not statistically significant, due in part to the low fidelity to the trial intervention. A qualitative process evaluation, conducted in the final few months of the trial, explained some of the factors that contributed to this low fidelity. Methods In-depth interviews were conducted with patients who received vouchers, nurses in intervention clinics, personnel in shops who administered the vouchers, and managers of the TB Control Programme. These interviews were analyzed thematically. Results The low fidelity to the trial intervention can be explained by two main factors. The first was nurses’ tendency to ‘ration’ the vouchers, only giving them to the most needy of eligible patients and leaving out those eligible patients whom they felt were financially more comfortable. The second was logistical issues related to the administration of the voucher as vouchers were not always available for patients on their appointed clinic dates, necessitating further visits to the clinics which they were not always able to make. Conclusions This process evaluation identifies some of the most important factors that contributed to the results of this pragmatic trial. It highlights the value of process evaluations as tools to explain the results of randomized trials and emphasizes the importance of implementers as ‘street level bureaucrats’ who may profoundly affect the way an intervention is administered. Trial registration Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN50689131, registered 21 April 2009. The trial protocol is available at the following web address: http://www

  11. Wheat forecast economics effect study. [value of improved information on crop inventories, production, imports and exports

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mehra, R. K.; Rouhani, R.; Jones, S.; Schick, I.

    1980-01-01

    A model to assess the value of improved information regarding the inventories, productions, exports, and imports of crop on a worldwide basis is discussed. A previously proposed model is interpreted in a stochastic control setting and the underlying assumptions of the model are revealed. In solving the stochastic optimization problem, the Markov programming approach is much more powerful and exact as compared to the dynamic programming-simulation approach of the original model. The convergence of a dual variable Markov programming algorithm is shown to be fast and efficient. A computer program for the general model of multicountry-multiperiod is developed. As an example, the case of one country-two periods is treated and the results are presented in detail. A comparison with the original model results reveals certain interesting aspects of the algorithms and the dependence of the value of information on the incremental cost function.

  12. Farm-economic analysis of reducing antimicrobial use whilst adopting improved management strategies on farrow-to-finish pig farms.

    PubMed

    Rojo-Gimeno, Cristina; Postma, Merel; Dewulf, Jeroen; Hogeveen, Henk; Lauwers, Ludwig; Wauters, Erwin

    2016-07-01

    Due to increasing public health concerns that food animals could be reservoirs for antibiotic resistant organisms, calls for reduced current antibiotic use on farms are growing. Nevertheless, it is challenging for farmers to perform this reduction without negatively affecting technical and economic performance. As an alternative, improved management practices based on biosecurity and vaccinations have been proven useful to reduce antimicrobial use without lowering productivity, but issues with insufficient experimental design possibilities have hindered economic analysis. In the present study a quasi-experimental approach was used for assessing the economic impact of reduction of antimicrobial use coupled with improved management strategies, particularly biosecurity strategies. The research was performed on farrow-to-finish pig farms in Flanders (northern region of Belgium). First, to account for technological progress and to avoid selection bias, propensity score analysis was used to compare data on technical parameters. The treatment group (n=48) participated in an intervention study whose aim was to improve management practices to reduce the need for use of antimicrobials. Before and after the change in management, data were collected on the technical parameters, biosecurity status, antimicrobial use, and vaccinations. Treated farms were matched without replacement with control farms (n=69), obtained from the Farm Accountancy Data Network, to estimate the difference in differences (DID) of the technical parameters. Second, the technical parameters' DID, together with the estimated costs of the management intervention and the price volatility of the feed, meat of the finisher pigs, and piglets served as a basis for modelling the profit of 11 virtual farrow-to-finish pig farms representative of the Flemish sector. Costs incurred by new biosecurity measures (median +€3.96/sow/year), and new vaccinations (median €0.00/sow/year) did not exceed the cost reduction

  13. Farm-economic analysis of reducing antimicrobial use whilst adopting improved management strategies on farrow-to-finish pig farms.

    PubMed

    Rojo-Gimeno, Cristina; Postma, Merel; Dewulf, Jeroen; Hogeveen, Henk; Lauwers, Ludwig; Wauters, Erwin

    2016-07-01

    Due to increasing public health concerns that food animals could be reservoirs for antibiotic resistant organisms, calls for reduced current antibiotic use on farms are growing. Nevertheless, it is challenging for farmers to perform this reduction without negatively affecting technical and economic performance. As an alternative, improved management practices based on biosecurity and vaccinations have been proven useful to reduce antimicrobial use without lowering productivity, but issues with insufficient experimental design possibilities have hindered economic analysis. In the present study a quasi-experimental approach was used for assessing the economic impact of reduction of antimicrobial use coupled with improved management strategies, particularly biosecurity strategies. The research was performed on farrow-to-finish pig farms in Flanders (northern region of Belgium). First, to account for technological progress and to avoid selection bias, propensity score analysis was used to compare data on technical parameters. The treatment group (n=48) participated in an intervention study whose aim was to improve management practices to reduce the need for use of antimicrobials. Before and after the change in management, data were collected on the technical parameters, biosecurity status, antimicrobial use, and vaccinations. Treated farms were matched without replacement with control farms (n=69), obtained from the Farm Accountancy Data Network, to estimate the difference in differences (DID) of the technical parameters. Second, the technical parameters' DID, together with the estimated costs of the management intervention and the price volatility of the feed, meat of the finisher pigs, and piglets served as a basis for modelling the profit of 11 virtual farrow-to-finish pig farms representative of the Flemish sector. Costs incurred by new biosecurity measures (median +€3.96/sow/year), and new vaccinations (median €0.00/sow/year) did not exceed the cost reduction

  14. [On the need to improve the system for the prevention of falsification of food products in the Eurasian Economic Union].

    PubMed

    Arnautov, O V; Bagryantseva, O V; Bessonov, V V

    2016-01-01

    Adulteration of food is misleading consumers about the composition of foods in order to obtain economic benefits. Olive oil, wine and other alcoholic beverages, spices, tea, fish, honey, milk and dairy products, meat products, cereal products, beverages based on fruit juices, spices, coffee are falsified with the highest frequency. In addition, sufficient data on the frequency of adulterated food products are missing not only in Russia but also in the developed countries. This is because the purpose of the manufacturer and distributors of such products is primarily an economic advantage. Therefore, the majority of incidents of falsification of food products remained undetected since their production, generally had not led to the risk of food safety, and consumers often did not notice the reduction in quality of foodstuffs. The analysis of international data and data of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) has shown that, in order to improve the quality of food products and to reduce sales of adulterated food the following steps should be done: introduce the definition of falsificated food products into legislation of the EAEU; expand the list of methods for confirming the authenticity of the food and detecting the presence of substances which are not permitted for usage in the food industry; consolidate the principle of the responsibility of all participants in the treatment of food that does not comply with the mandatory requirements at the legislative level; introduce the indicators of the quality of foodstuffs in the technical regulations of the EAEU; return to the mandatory requirements for the quality of foods given in the interstate and state standards.

  15. [On the need to improve the system for the prevention of falsification of food products in the Eurasian Economic Union].

    PubMed

    Arnautov, O V; Bagryantseva, O V; Bessonov, V V

    2016-01-01

    Adulteration of food is misleading consumers about the composition of foods in order to obtain economic benefits. Olive oil, wine and other alcoholic beverages, spices, tea, fish, honey, milk and dairy products, meat products, cereal products, beverages based on fruit juices, spices, coffee are falsified with the highest frequency. In addition, sufficient data on the frequency of adulterated food products are missing not only in Russia but also in the developed countries. This is because the purpose of the manufacturer and distributors of such products is primarily an economic advantage. Therefore, the majority of incidents of falsification of food products remained undetected since their production, generally had not led to the risk of food safety, and consumers often did not notice the reduction in quality of foodstuffs. The analysis of international data and data of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) has shown that, in order to improve the quality of food products and to reduce sales of adulterated food the following steps should be done: introduce the definition of falsificated food products into legislation of the EAEU; expand the list of methods for confirming the authenticity of the food and detecting the presence of substances which are not permitted for usage in the food industry; consolidate the principle of the responsibility of all participants in the treatment of food that does not comply with the mandatory requirements at the legislative level; introduce the indicators of the quality of foodstuffs in the technical regulations of the EAEU; return to the mandatory requirements for the quality of foods given in the interstate and state standards. PMID:27455606

  16. Could Transparency Bring Economic Diversity?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kahlenberg, Richard D.

    2007-01-01

    The Spellings Commission report calls for greater access to higher education for low- and moderate-income students, greater transparency in the way higher education works and greater accountability for producing results. These recommendations are all significant in their own right, but the three concepts also converge to provide powerful support…

  17. Improving medication adherence among kidney transplant recipients: Findings from other industries, patient engagement, and behavioral economics-A scoping review.

    PubMed

    Oberlin, Shelley R; Parente, Stephen T; Pruett, Timothy L

    2016-01-01

    The immune system is a powerful barrier to successful organ transplantation, but one that has been routinely thwarted through modern pharmacotherapeutics. Despite the benefits of immunosuppressive therapy, medication non-adherence leads to an increased risk of graft rejection, higher hospital utilization and costs, and poor outcomes. We conduct a scoping review following Arksey and O'Malley's five-stage framework methodology to identify established or novel interventions that could be applied to kidney transplant recipients to improve medication adherence. As the desired outcome is a behavior (taking a pill), we assess three areas: behavioral-focused interventions in other industries, patient engagement theories, and behavioral economic principles. Search strategies included mining business, social sciences, and medical literature with additional guidance from six consultative interviews. Our review suggests that no intervention stands out as superior or likely to be more effective than any other intervention; yet promising strategies and interventions were identified across all three areas examined. Based on our findings, we believe there are five strategies that transplant centers and other organizations can implement to improve medication adherence: (1) Build a foundation of trust; (2) Employ multiple interventions; (3) Stratify the population; (4) Develop collaborative partnerships; and (5) Embed medication adherence into the organization's culture. The effectiveness of these interventions will need to be investigated further, but we believe they are a step in the right direction for organizations to consider in their efforts to improve medication adherence. PMID:26835016

  18. Improving medication adherence among kidney transplant recipients: Findings from other industries, patient engagement, and behavioral economics-A scoping review.

    PubMed

    Oberlin, Shelley R; Parente, Stephen T; Pruett, Timothy L

    2016-01-01

    The immune system is a powerful barrier to successful organ transplantation, but one that has been routinely thwarted through modern pharmacotherapeutics. Despite the benefits of immunosuppressive therapy, medication non-adherence leads to an increased risk of graft rejection, higher hospital utilization and costs, and poor outcomes. We conduct a scoping review following Arksey and O'Malley's five-stage framework methodology to identify established or novel interventions that could be applied to kidney transplant recipients to improve medication adherence. As the desired outcome is a behavior (taking a pill), we assess three areas: behavioral-focused interventions in other industries, patient engagement theories, and behavioral economic principles. Search strategies included mining business, social sciences, and medical literature with additional guidance from six consultative interviews. Our review suggests that no intervention stands out as superior or likely to be more effective than any other intervention; yet promising strategies and interventions were identified across all three areas examined. Based on our findings, we believe there are five strategies that transplant centers and other organizations can implement to improve medication adherence: (1) Build a foundation of trust; (2) Employ multiple interventions; (3) Stratify the population; (4) Develop collaborative partnerships; and (5) Embed medication adherence into the organization's culture. The effectiveness of these interventions will need to be investigated further, but we believe they are a step in the right direction for organizations to consider in their efforts to improve medication adherence.

  19. APPLICATION OF RESERVOIR CHARACTERIZATION AND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE RECOVERY AND ECONOMICS IN A LOWER QUALITY SHALLOW SHELF SANANDRES RESERVOIR

    SciTech Connect

    Unknown

    2003-01-15

    The Class 2 Project at West Welch was designed to demonstrate the use of advanced technologies to enhance the economics of improved oil recovery (IOR) projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate (SSC) reservoirs, resulting in recovery of additional oil that would otherwise be left in the reservoir at project abandonment. Accurate reservoir description is critical to the effective evaluation and efficient design of IOR projects in the heterogeneous SSC reservoirs. Therefore, the majority of Budget Period 1 was devoted to reservoir characterization. Technologies being demonstrated include: (1) Advanced petrophysics; (2) Three-dimensional (3-D) seismic; (3) Crosswell bore tomography; (4) Advanced reservoir simulation; (5) Carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) stimulation treatments; (6) Hydraulic fracturing design and monitoring; (7) Mobility control agents.

  20. Professional motivation and career plan differences between African-American and Caucasian dental students: implications for improving workforce diversity.

    PubMed

    Butters, Janice M; Winter, Paul A

    2002-06-01

    Vast disparities in oral health status coupled with projected decreases in African Americans enrolling in and graduating from dental school have heightened concern about the underrepresentation of African Americans in the dental profession. The purpose of this study was to explore differences between African-American and white American students regarding demographics, professional motivations, and career plans. African-American (n = 104) and white American (n = 226) dental students completed a biographical data survey instrument, which included information about family background and professional motivations and plans, and rated descriptions of three practice arrangements. African-American students were more motivated to become a dentist to serve the public, plan to specialize, work in an urban area, and work part-time. White American students were more motivated to become a dentist based on factors related to family commitments. Race was a significant predictor for student ratings for both solo and employee practice. Study results have implications for health professions educators, administrators, and policy makers in their efforts to improve the recruitment and retention of African-American students, shape dental curricula to meet diverse student needs, and implement loan forgiveness programs to enhance minority student recruitment.

  1. Utilizing Culture to Improve Communication and School Involvement with Parents from Diverse Backgrounds as a Means to Improve Student Achievement Levels in the United States: A National Focus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacobs, Karen Dupre; Kritsonis, William Allan

    2007-01-01

    School leadership in communicating to parents and students from diverse backgrounds is a problem in education that must be addressed. As the population of the United States is becoming more and more diverse, school administrators must develop new ways to reach their stakeholders. All families must be involved in their children's academic progress…

  2. Demand response to improved walking infrastructure: A study into the economics of walking and health behaviour change.

    PubMed

    Longo, Alberto; Hutchinson, W George; Hunter, Ruth F; Tully, Mark A; Kee, Frank

    2015-10-01

    Walking is the most common form of moderate-intensity physical activity among adults, is widely accessible and especially appealing to obese people. Most often policy makers are interested in valuing the effect on walking of changes in some characteristics of a neighbourhood, the demand response for walking, of infrastructure changes. A positive demand response to improvements in the walking environment could help meet the public health target of 150 min of at least moderate-intensity physical activity per week. We model walking in an individual's local neighbourhood as a 'weak complement' to the characteristics of the neighbourhood itself. Walking is affected by neighbourhood characteristics, substitutes, and individual's characteristics, including their opportunity cost of time. Using compensating variation, we assess the economic benefits of walking and how walking behaviour is affected by improvements to the neighbourhood. Using a sample of 1209 respondents surveyed over a 12 month period (Feb 2010-Jan 2011) in East Belfast, United Kingdom, we find that a policy that increased walkability and people's perception of access to shops and facilities would lead to an increase in walking of about 36 min/person/week, valued at £13.65/person/week. When focussing on inactive residents, a policy that improved the walkability of the area would lead to guidelines for physical activity being reached by only 12.8% of the population who are currently inactive. Additional interventions would therefore be needed to encourage inactive residents to achieve the recommended levels of physical activity, as it appears that interventions that improve the walkability of an area are particularly effective in increasing walking among already active citizens, and, among the inactive ones, the best response is found among healthier, younger and wealthier citizens.

  3. The economic benefits of child safety seat misuse reduction programs and design improvements for children in rear seats.

    PubMed

    Zaloshnja, E; Miller, T R

    2007-01-01

    This study finds that the break-even point for child safety seat misuse reduction programs and vehicle and seat design improvements is dollars 121 a year per child seat in use, annual misuse reduction program cost is dollars 6, and Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) cost dollars 13 annually per seat in use (in 2004 dollars). To estimate societal injury cost savings we compared tow-away crash outcomes for children ages 0-4, traveling in child seats in the back of passenger vehicles in 1984-1986 vs. 1999-2005. Both injury frequency and severity were compared and entered into the calculation of mean injury costs. To analyze the economic benefits of child safety seat misuse reduction programs and vehicle and seat design improvements for children sitting in rear seats of passenger vehicles, we compared outcomes of tow-away crashes for children ages 0-4 traveling in a child safety seat in two different multi-year time periods: 1984-1986 and 1999-2005. We chose 1984-1986 as a baseline as those years featured large, high-quality samples of crash data during the time period before the ongoing misuse of child seats was recognized as a public policy problem. By the early 1990s, misuse was a policy issue and misuse reduction programs were springing up.

  4. The economic impact of a partnership-measurement model of disease management: Improving Cardiovascular Outcomes in Nova Scotia (ICONS).

    PubMed

    Crémieux, Pierre-Yves; Fortin, Pierre; Meilleur, Marie-Claude; Montague, Terrence; Royer, Jimmy

    2007-01-01

    Improving Cardiovascular Outcomes in Nova Scotia (ICONS) was a five-year, community partnership-based disease-management project that sought, as a primary goal, to improve the care and outcomes of patients with heart disease in Nova Scotia. This program, based on a broad stakeholder partnership, provided repeated measurement and feedback on practices and outcomes as well as widespread communication and education among all partners. From a clinical viewpoint, ICONS was successful. For example, use of proven therapies for the target diseases improved and re-hospitalization rates decreased. Stakeholders also perceived a sense of satisfaction because of their involvement in the partnership. However, the universe of health stakeholders is large, and not many have had an experience similar to ICONS. These other health stakeholders, such as decision-makers concerned with the cost of care and determining the value for cost, might, nonetheless, benefit from knowledge of the ICONS concepts and results, particularly economic analyses, as they determine future health policy. Using budgetary data on actual dollars spent and a robust input-output methodology, we assessed the economic impact of ICONS, including trickle-down effects on the Canadian and Nova Scotian economies. The analysis revealed that the $6.22 million invested in Nova Scotia by the private sector donor generated an initial net increase in total Canadian wealth of $5.32 million and a global net increase in total Canadian wealth of $10.23 million, including $2.27 million returned to the different governments through direct and indirect taxes. Thus, the local, provincial and federal governments are important beneficiaries of health project investments such as ICONS. The various government levels benefit from the direct influx of private funds into the publicly funded healthcare sector, from direct and indirect tax revenues and from an increase in knowledge-related employment. This, of course, is in addition to the

  5. Melon (Cucumis melo L.) Diversity Analyses Provide Strategies for Germplasm Curation, Genetic Improvement and Evidentiary Support of Domestication Patterns

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genetic diversity of melon market types (Cucumis melo L., 2n = 2x = 24) in China, an important secondary center of diversity, has not been examined. Therefore, reference accessions (India, Africa, Crete/Greece, Japan, Europe, USA, and Spain) and 68 Chinese cultigens (fresh market non-netted thi...

  6. Utilizing the Wikidata System to Improve the Quality of Medical Content in Wikipedia in Diverse Languages: A Pilot Study

    PubMed Central

    Pfundner, Alexander; Schönberg, Tobias; Horn, John; Boyce, Richard D

    2015-01-01

    Background Wikipedia is an important source of medical information for both patients and medical professionals. Given its wide reach, improving the quality, completeness, and accessibility of medical information on Wikipedia could have a positive impact on global health. Objective We created a prototypical implementation of an automated system for keeping drug-drug interaction (DDI) information in Wikipedia up to date with current evidence about clinically significant drug interactions. Our work is based on Wikidata, a novel, graph-based database backend of Wikipedia currently in development. Methods We set up an automated process for integrating data from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) high priority DDI list into Wikidata. We set up exemplary implementations demonstrating how the DDI data we introduced into Wikidata could be displayed in Wikipedia articles in diverse languages. Finally, we conducted a pilot analysis to explore if adding the ONC high priority data would substantially enhance the information currently available on Wikipedia. Results We derived 1150 unique interactions from the ONC high priority list. Integration of the potential DDI data from Wikidata into Wikipedia articles proved to be straightforward and yielded useful results. We found that even though the majority of current English Wikipedia articles about pharmaceuticals contained sections detailing contraindications, only a small fraction of articles explicitly mentioned interaction partners from the ONC high priority list. For 91.30% (1050/1150) of the interaction pairs we tested, none of the 2 articles corresponding to the interacting substances explicitly mentioned the interaction partner. For 7.21% (83/1150) of the pairs, only 1 of the 2 associated Wikipedia articles mentioned the interaction partner; for only 1.48% (17/1150) of the pairs, both articles contained explicit mentions of the interaction partner. Conclusions Our prototype

  7. Improving Indonesia's Cities: A Case Study of Economic Development, Including a Teaching Guide and An Economic Summary of Indonesia. Toward a Better World Series, Learning Kit No. 5.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baldwin, Harriet, Ed.; Rosen, Carol, Ed.

    This World Bank (Washington, D.C.) kit is designed to teach secondary school social studies students the impact of rapid urbanization on Jakarta, the capital city of Indonesia. The kit contains a pamphlet, a booklet, a filmstrip, and a teacher's guide. The pamphlet, "An Economic Summary of Indonesia" provides students with the structure, recent…

  8. Prescriber preferences for behavioural economics interventions to improve treatment of acute respiratory infections: a discrete choice experiment

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Cynthia L; Hay, Joel W; Meeker, Daniella; Doctor, Jason N

    2016-01-01

    Objective To elicit prescribers' preferences for behavioural economics interventions designed to reduce inappropriate antibiotic prescribing, and compare these to actual behaviour. Design Discrete choice experiment (DCE). Setting 47 primary care centres in Boston and Los Angeles. Participants 234 primary care providers, with an average 20 years of practice. Main outcomes and measures Results of a behavioural economic intervention trial were compared to prescribers' stated preferences for the same interventions relative to monetary and time rewards for improved prescribing outcomes. In the randomised controlled trial (RCT) component, the 3 computerised prescription order entry-triggered interventions studied included: Suggested Alternatives (SA), an alert that populated non-antibiotic treatment options if an inappropriate antibiotic was prescribed; Accountable Justifications (JA), which prompted the prescriber to enter a justification for an inappropriately prescribed antibiotic that would then be documented in the patient's chart; and Peer Comparison (PC), an email periodically sent to each prescriber comparing his/her antibiotic prescribing rate with those who had the lowest rates of inappropriate antibiotic prescribing. A DCE study component was administered to determine whether prescribers felt SA, JA, PC, pay-for-performance or additional clinic time would most effectively reduce their inappropriate antibiotic prescribing. Willingness-to-pay (WTP) was calculated for each intervention. Results In the RCT, PC and JA were found to be the most effective interventions to reduce inappropriate antibiotic prescribing, whereas SA was not significantly different from controls. In the DCE however, regardless of treatment intervention received during the RCT, prescribers overwhelmingly preferred SA, followed by PC, then JA. WTP estimates indicated that each intervention would be significantly cheaper to implement than pay-for-performance incentives of $200/month

  9. Predicting moisture and economic value of solid forest fuel piles for improving the profitability of bioenergy use

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lauren, Ari; Kinnunen, Jyrki-Pekko; Sikanen, Lauri

    2016-04-01

    Bioenergy contributes 26 % of the total energy use in Finland, and 60 % of this is provided by solid forest fuel consisting of small stems and logging residues such as tops, branches, roots and stumps. Typically the logging residues are stored as piles on site before transporting to regional combined heat and power plants for combustion. Profitability of forest fuel use depends on smart control of the feedstock. Fuel moisture, dry matter loss, and the rate of interest during the storing are the key variables affecting the economic value of the fuel. The value increases with drying, but decreases with wetting, dry matter loss and positive rate of interest. We compiled a simple simulation model computing the moisture change, dry matter loss, transportation costs and present value of feedstock piles. The model was used to predict the time of the maximum value of the stock, and to compose feedstock allocation strategies under the question: how should we choose the piles and the combustion time so that total energy yield and the economic value of the energy production is maximized? The question was assessed concerning the demand of the energy plant. The model parameterization was based on field scale studies. The initial moisture, and the rates of daily moisture change and dry matter loss in the feedstock piles depended on the day of the year according to empirical field measurements. Time step of the computation was one day. Effects of pile use timing on the total energy yield and profitability was studied using combinatorial optimization. Results show that the storing increases the pile maximum value if the natural drying onsets soon after the harvesting; otherwise dry matter loss and the capital cost of the storing overcome the benefits gained by drying. Optimized timing of the pile use can improve slightly the profitability, based on the increased total energy yield and because the energy unit based transportation costs decrease when water content in the biomass is

  10. Diversity Matters: New Directions for Institutional Research on Undergraduate Racial/Ethnic and Economic Diversity. SERU Project and Consortium Research Paper. Research & Occasional Paper Series: CSHE.8.11

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thomson, Gregg

    2011-01-01

    This paper reviews the new directions in institutional research on undergraduate racial/ethnic and socioeconomic diversity at the University of California, Berkeley. The use of SERU/UCUES and other web-based census surveys has made possible more detailed and extensive analysis of student diversity. Included is research on an expanded number of…

  11. Aspergillus flavus diversity on crops and in the environment can be exploited to reduce aflatoxin exposure and improve health

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Humans and animals are exposed to aflatoxins, toxic carcinogenic fungal metabolites, through consumption of contaminated food and feed. Aspergillus flavus, the primary causal agent of crop aflatoxin contamination, is composed of phenotypically and genotypically diverse vegetative compatibility group...

  12. Bridging the gap: exploring the barriers to using economic evidence in healthcare decision making and strategies for improving uptake.

    PubMed

    Merlo, Gregory; Page, Katie; Ratcliffe, Julie; Halton, Kate; Graves, Nicholas

    2015-06-01

    Evidence from economic evaluations is often not used to inform healthcare policy despite being well regarded by policy makers and physicians. This article employs the accessibility and acceptability framework to review the barriers to using evidence from economic evaluation in healthcare policy and the strategies used to overcome these barriers. Economic evaluations are often inaccessible to policymakers due to the absence of relevant economic evaluations, the time and cost required to conduct and interpret economic evaluations, and lack of expertise to evaluate quality and interpret results. Consistently reported factors that limit the translation of findings from economic evaluations into healthcare policy include poor quality of research informing economic evaluations, assumptions used in economic modelling, conflicts of interest, difficulties in transferring resources between sectors, negative attitudes to healthcare rationing, and the absence of equity considerations. Strategies to overcome these barriers have been suggested in the literature, including training, structured abstract databases, rapid evaluation, reporting checklists for journals, and considering factors other than cost effectiveness in economic evaluations, such as equity or budget impact. The factors that prevent or encourage decision makers to use evidence from economic evaluations have been identified, but the relative importance of these factors to decision makers is uncertain.

  13. Reducing GHG emissions through genetic improvement for feed efficiency: effects on economically important traits and enteric methane production.

    PubMed

    Basarab, J A; Beauchemin, K A; Baron, V S; Ominski, K H; Guan, L L; Miller, S P; Crowley, J J

    2013-06-01

    Genetic selection for residual feed intake (RFI) is an indirect approach for reducing enteric methane (CH4) emissions in beef and dairy cattle. RFI is moderately heritable (0.26 to 0.43), moderately repeatable across diets (0.33 to 0.67) and independent of body size and production, and when adjusted for off-test ultrasound backfat thickness (RFI fat) is also independent of body fatness in growing animals. It is highly dependent on accurate measurement of individual animal feed intake. Within-animal repeatability of feed intake is moderate (0.29 to 0.49) with distinctive diurnal patterns associated with cattle type, diet and genotype, necessitating the recording of feed intake for at least 35 days. In addition, direct measurement of enteric CH4 production will likely be more variable and expensive than measuring feed intake and if conducted should be expressed as CH4 production (g/animal per day) adjusted for body size, growth, body composition and dry matter intake (DMI) or as residual CH4 production. A further disadvantage of a direct CH4 phenotype is that the relationships of enteric CH4 production on other economically important traits are largely unknown. Selection for low RFI fat (efficient, -RFI fat) will result in cattle that consume less dry matter (DMI) and have an improved feed conversion ratio (FCR) compared with high RFI fat cattle (inefficient; +RFI fat). Few antagonistic effects have been reported for the relationships of RFI fat on carcass and meat quality, fertility, cow lifetime productivity and adaptability to stress or extensive grazing conditions. Low RFI fat cattle also produce 15% to 25% less enteric CH4 than +RFI fat cattle, since DMI is positively related to enteric methane (CH4) production. In addition, lower DMI and feeding duration and frequency, and a different rumen bacterial profile that improves rumen fermentation in -RFI fat cattle may favor a 1% to 2% improvement in dry matter and CP digestibility compared with +RFI fat cattle. Rate

  14. Improving diversity through strategic planning: a 10-year (2002-2012) experience at theMedical University of South Carolina.

    PubMed

    Deas, Deborah; Pisano, Etta D; Mainous, Arch G; Johnson, Natalie G; Singleton, Myra Haney; Gordon, Leonie; Taylor, Wanda; Hazen-Martin, Debra; Burnham, Willette S; Reves, J G

    2012-11-01

    The Medical University of South Carolina launched a systematic plan to infuse diversity among its students, resident physicians, and faculty in 2002. The dean and stakeholders of the College of Medicine (COM) embraced the concept that a more population-representative physician workforce could contribute to the goals of providing quality medical education and addressing health care disparities in South Carolina. Diversity became a central component of the COM's strategic plan, and all departments developed diversity plans consistent with the overarching plan of the COM. Liaisons from the COM diversity committee facilitated the development of the department's diversity plans. By 2011, the efforts resulted in a doubling of the number of underrepresented-in-medicine (URM, defined as African American, Latino, Native American) students (21% of student body); matriculation of 10 African American males as first-year medical students annually for four consecutive years; more than a threefold increase in URM residents/fellows; expansion of pipeline programs; expansion of mentoring programs; almost twice as many URM faculty; integration of cultural competency throughout the medical school curriculum; advancement of women and URM individuals into leadership positions; and enhanced learning for individuals from all backgrounds. This article reports the implementation of an institutional plan to create a more racially representative workforce across the academic continuum. The authors emphasize the role of the stakeholders in promoting diversity, the value of annual assessment to evaluate outcomes, and the positive benefits for individuals of all backgrounds. PMID:23018331

  15. Improving diversity through strategic planning: a 10-year (2002-2012) experience at theMedical University of South Carolina.

    PubMed

    Deas, Deborah; Pisano, Etta D; Mainous, Arch G; Johnson, Natalie G; Singleton, Myra Haney; Gordon, Leonie; Taylor, Wanda; Hazen-Martin, Debra; Burnham, Willette S; Reves, J G

    2012-11-01

    The Medical University of South Carolina launched a systematic plan to infuse diversity among its students, resident physicians, and faculty in 2002. The dean and stakeholders of the College of Medicine (COM) embraced the concept that a more population-representative physician workforce could contribute to the goals of providing quality medical education and addressing health care disparities in South Carolina. Diversity became a central component of the COM's strategic plan, and all departments developed diversity plans consistent with the overarching plan of the COM. Liaisons from the COM diversity committee facilitated the development of the department's diversity plans. By 2011, the efforts resulted in a doubling of the number of underrepresented-in-medicine (URM, defined as African American, Latino, Native American) students (21% of student body); matriculation of 10 African American males as first-year medical students annually for four consecutive years; more than a threefold increase in URM residents/fellows; expansion of pipeline programs; expansion of mentoring programs; almost twice as many URM faculty; integration of cultural competency throughout the medical school curriculum; advancement of women and URM individuals into leadership positions; and enhanced learning for individuals from all backgrounds. This article reports the implementation of an institutional plan to create a more racially representative workforce across the academic continuum. The authors emphasize the role of the stakeholders in promoting diversity, the value of annual assessment to evaluate outcomes, and the positive benefits for individuals of all backgrounds.

  16. Improving the economic and humanistic outcomes for diabetic patients: making a case for employer-sponsored medication therapy management

    PubMed Central

    Pinto, Sharrel L; Kumar, Jinender; Partha, Gautam; Bechtol, Robert A

    2013-01-01

    Background The purpose of this study was to determine the cost savings of a pharmacist-led, employer-sponsored medication therapy management (MTM) program for diabetic patients and to assess for any changes in patient satisfaction and self-reported medication adherence for enrollees. Methods Participants in this study were enrollees of an employer-sponsored MTM program. They were included if their primary medical insurance and prescription coverage was from the City of Toledo, they had a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes, and whether or not they had been on medication or had been given a new prescription for diabetes treatment. The data were analyzed on a prospective, pre-post longitudinal basis, and tracked for one year following enrollment. Outcomes included economic costs, patient satisfaction, and self-reported patient adherence. Descriptive statistics were used to characterize the population, calculate the number of visits, and determine the mean costs for each visit. Friedman’s test was used to determine changes in outcomes due to the nonparametric nature of the data. Results The mean number of visits to a physician’s office decreased from 10.22 to 7.07. The mean cost of these visits for patients increased from $47.70 to $66.41, but use of the emergency room and inpatient visits decreased by at least 50%. Employer spending on emergency room visits decreased by $24,214.17 and inpatient visit costs decreased by $166,610.84. Office visit spending increased by $11,776.41. A total cost savings of $179,047.80 was realized by the employer at the end of the program. Significant improvements in patient satisfaction and adherence were observed. Conclusion Pharmacist interventions provided through the employer-sponsored MTM program led to substantial cost savings to the employer with improved patient satisfaction and adherence on the part of employees at the conclusion of the program. PMID:23610526

  17. Water transfer and major environmental provisions of the Central Valley Project Improvement Act: A preliminary economic evaluation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loomis, John B.

    1994-06-01

    Increasing block water pricing, water transfer, and wildlife refuge water supply provisions of the Central Valley Project (CVP) Improvement Act are analyzed in terms of likely farmer response and economic efficiency of these provisions. Based on a simplified partial equilibrium analysis, we estimate small, but significant water conservation savings due to pricing reform, the potential for substantial water transfers to non-CVP customers in severe drought years when the water price exceeds 110 per acre foot (1 acre foot equals 1.234 × 103 m3) and positive net benefits for implementation of the wildlife refuge water supply provisions. The high threshold water price is partly a result of requiring farmers to pay full cost on transferred water plus a surcharge of 25 per acre foot if the water is transferred to a non-CVP user. The act also sets an important precedent for water pricing reform, water transfer provisions, and environmental surcharges on water users that may find their way to other Bureau of Reclamation projects.

  18. Indicators for Improving Educational, Employment, and Economic Outcomes for Youth and Young Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities: A National Report on Existing Data Sources

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sulewski, Jennifer Sullivan; Zalewska, Agnes; Butterworth, John

    2012-01-01

    This report summarizes available national data on educational, employment and economic outcomes for youth and young adults with intellectual disabilities (ID) over the years 2000-2010. These data can be used to benchmark progress in improving these outcomes for young adult population across the country and within individual states. Data is…

  19. Application of Reservoir Characterization and Advanced Technology to Improve Recovery and Economics in a Lower Quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate Reservoir

    SciTech Connect

    Rebecca Egg

    2002-09-30

    The OXY-operated Class 2 Project at West Welch is designed to demonstrate how the use of advanced technology can improve the economics of miscible CO{sub 2} injection projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate reservoirs. The research and design phase (Budget Period 1) primarily involved advanced reservoir characterization. The current demonstration phase (Budget Period 2) is the implementation of the reservoir management plan for an optimum miscible CO{sub 2} flood design based on the reservoir characterization. Although Budget Period 1 for the Project officially ended 12/31/96, reservoir characterization and simulation work continued during the Budget Period 2. During the fifth and sixth annual reporting periods (8/3/98-8/2/00) covered by this report, work continued on interpretation of the cross well seismic data to create porosity and permeability profiles which were distributed into the reservoir geostatistically. The initial interwell seismic CO{sub 2} monitor survey was conducted, the acquired data processed and interpretation started. Only limited well work and facility construction was conducted in the project area. The CO{sub 2} injection initiated in October 1997 was continued, although the operator had to modify the operating plan in response to low injection rates, well performance and changes in CO{sub 2} supply. CO{sub 2} injection was focused in a smaller area to increase the reservoir processing rate. By the end of the reporting period three producers had shown sustained oil rate increases and ten wells had experienced gas (CO{sub 2}) breakthrough.

  20. A Study of Faculty Racial Diversity in Business Schools: Perceptions of Business Deans

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moshiri, Farrokh; Cardon, Peter Wilson

    2016-01-01

    For decades, business schools in the United States have attempted to increase faculty diversity. The goals and benefits of increasing faculty diversity include improved educational outcomes, social justice, and economic competitiveness. While Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business data shows that a gender gap still exists in…

  1. Transcriptome analysis of a breeding program pedigree examines gene expression diversity and reveals target genes for malting quality improvement

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Advanced cycle breeding utilizes crosses among elite lines and is a successful method to develop new inbreds. However, it results in a reduction in genetic diversity within the breeding population. The development of malting barley varieties requires the adherence to a narrow malting quality profile...

  2. Valuing Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Fryer, Roland G.; Loury, Glenn C.

    2014-01-01

    This paper explores the economics of diversity-enhancing policies. A model is proposed in which heterogeneous agents, distinguished by skill level and social identity, purchase productive opportunities in a competitive market. We analyze policies designed to raise the status of a disadvantaged identity group. When agent identity is contractible, efficient policy grants preferred access to slots but offers no direct assistance for acquiring skills. When identity is not contractible, efficient policy provides universal subsidies to skill development when the fraction of the disadvantaged group at the skill development margin is larger than their share at the slot assignment margin. PMID:25525280

  3. Workplace diversity: a leadership challenge. Managing diversity is a social, financial, and moral imperative.

    PubMed

    Lappetito, J

    1994-03-01

    Fostering workplace diversity is about building an organizational culture that embraces personal differences and encourages heterogeneous persons to work together toward a common end. Setting in motion the transition to a more inclusive and productive workplace is an uncommon challenge and the primary responsibility of leaders, especially in Catholic healthcare. The origins of diversity can be found in creation itself. Not only are we united as a people of God and as members of the body of Christ, we are bound together through our shared humanity. Three values are especially relevant to promoting diversity in the workplace: respect for human dignity, the common good, and distributive justice as participation in the common good. Economic incentives strengthen the theological and moral motives for developing a diverse work force. Organizations' financial success will depend ultimately on how well diversity is integrated into the organizational culture. As a process, managing diversity enables healthcare leaders to discover new ways to develop the potential of all employees and at the same time improve performance and production. At the heart of managing diversity lies the reform of internal systems, structures, and processes. Managing diversity also requires the transformation of the organization's culture. Initiatives that are useful for setting a positive future course include conducting a cultural audit, establishing a cultural diversity task force, and putting in place a diversity "champion" who is accountable directly to the chief executive officer. PMID:10132109

  4. Workplace diversity: a leadership challenge. Managing diversity is a social, financial, and moral imperative.

    PubMed

    Lappetito, J

    1994-03-01

    Fostering workplace diversity is about building an organizational culture that embraces personal differences and encourages heterogeneous persons to work together toward a common end. Setting in motion the transition to a more inclusive and productive workplace is an uncommon challenge and the primary responsibility of leaders, especially in Catholic healthcare. The origins of diversity can be found in creation itself. Not only are we united as a people of God and as members of the body of Christ, we are bound together through our shared humanity. Three values are especially relevant to promoting diversity in the workplace: respect for human dignity, the common good, and distributive justice as participation in the common good. Economic incentives strengthen the theological and moral motives for developing a diverse work force. Organizations' financial success will depend ultimately on how well diversity is integrated into the organizational culture. As a process, managing diversity enables healthcare leaders to discover new ways to develop the potential of all employees and at the same time improve performance and production. At the heart of managing diversity lies the reform of internal systems, structures, and processes. Managing diversity also requires the transformation of the organization's culture. Initiatives that are useful for setting a positive future course include conducting a cultural audit, establishing a cultural diversity task force, and putting in place a diversity "champion" who is accountable directly to the chief executive officer.

  5. Genetic Diversity Analysis of Indian Bitter Gourd (Momordica Charantia L.) Allows for the Development of Crop Improvement Strategies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bitter gourd (Momordica charantia L. var. minima and var. maxima) or bitter melon is one of the most economically important cucurbit species worldwide. Although India is the center of origin of bitter melon, and cultivars and landraces of this species are widely cultivated in Asia, a rigorous asses...

  6. Institutional Diversity in the U.S.: A Study of How a Historically Black College, Women's College, and Evangelical Christian College Contribute to the Social, Political, and Economic Fabric of a Diverse Democracy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Millora, Melissa Lansang

    2013-01-01

    This study was primarily a multiple-case study that incorporated descriptive statistical analysis to examine the contributions that three niche institutions play in the diverse democracy of the U.S. A "niche institution" is a college or university whose role in U.S. higher education is to meet the needs of a specific group and whose…

  7. Economic values for production and functional traits and assessment of their influence on genetic improvement in the Boran cattle in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Rewe, T O; Indetie, D; Ojango, J M K; Kahi, A K

    2006-02-01

    Economic values for production (sale weight in steers, SWs, kg and heifers, SWh, kg; dressing percentage, DP; consumable meat percentage, CMP and milk yield, MY, kg) and functional (cow weight, CoWT, kg; cow survival rate, CoSR, %; postweaning survival rate, PSR, %; feed intake of cows, FIc, heifers, FIh and steers, FIs, kg DM) traits were estimated for six production systems utilizing the Boran breed in Kenya. The influence of the estimated economic values on genetic improvement was also assessed using different selection indices. The six production systems were described according to their sale age, levels of input and final goal, namely, short-fed medium input beef (SMB); long-fed medium input beef (LMB); short-fed high input beef (SHB); long-fed high input beef (LHB); long-fed low input dual purpose (LLD); and long-fed medium input dual purpose (LMD). Two evaluation bases were considered: fixed herd size and fixed pasture input. In the fixed herd-size situation, the economic values for production (except MY in beef systems) and functional traits (except FI in all systems) were positive meaning a unit increase in genetic merit of these traits had greater influence on revenues than costs. As expected, the economic value for MY was negative in the pure beef systems (SMB, LMB, SHB and LHB) and positive in the dual-purpose systems (LLD and LMD). When compared with the economic values estimated in the fixed herd-size situation, in the fixed pasture input situation they were lower for feed intake in the three classes of livestock and other traits related to it in all systems. These traits were CoSR, CoWR, PSR, CoWT, SWh and MY. The economic values for CoWT in LLD and LMD were negative (KSh -11.14 and -15.33 respectively). The economic values did not influence much the direction of the genetic response in each trait in the different production systems. However, the magnitude of the actual gain was dependent on the index applied. The magnitude of the economic values for

  8. Maximizing the phylogenetic diversity of seed banks.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Kate E; Balding, Sharon T; Dickie, John B; Lewis, Gwilym P; Pearce, Tim R; Grenyer, Richard

    2015-04-01

    Ex situ conservation efforts such as those of zoos, botanical gardens, and seed banks will form a vital complement to in situ conservation actions over the coming decades. It is therefore necessary to pay the same attention to the biological diversity represented in ex situ conservation facilities as is often paid to protected-area networks. Building the phylogenetic diversity of ex situ collections will strengthen our capacity to respond to biodiversity loss. Since 2000, the Millennium Seed Bank Partnership has banked seed from 14% of the world's plant species. We assessed the taxonomic, geographic, and phylogenetic diversity of the Millennium Seed Bank collection of legumes (Leguminosae). We compared the collection with all known legume genera, their known geographic range (at country and regional levels), and a genus-level phylogeny of the legume family constructed for this study. Over half the phylogenetic diversity of legumes at the genus level was represented in the Millennium Seed Bank. However, pragmatic prioritization of species of economic importance and endangerment has led to the banking of a less-than-optimal phylogenetic diversity and prioritization of range-restricted species risks an underdispersed collection. The current state of the phylogenetic diversity of legumes in the Millennium Seed Bank could be substantially improved through the strategic banking of relatively few additional taxa. Our method draws on tools that are widely applied to in situ conservation planning, and it can be used to evaluate and improve the phylogenetic diversity of ex situ collections.

  9. Maximizing the phylogenetic diversity of seed banks.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Kate E; Balding, Sharon T; Dickie, John B; Lewis, Gwilym P; Pearce, Tim R; Grenyer, Richard

    2015-04-01

    Ex situ conservation efforts such as those of zoos, botanical gardens, and seed banks will form a vital complement to in situ conservation actions over the coming decades. It is therefore necessary to pay the same attention to the biological diversity represented in ex situ conservation facilities as is often paid to protected-area networks. Building the phylogenetic diversity of ex situ collections will strengthen our capacity to respond to biodiversity loss. Since 2000, the Millennium Seed Bank Partnership has banked seed from 14% of the world's plant species. We assessed the taxonomic, geographic, and phylogenetic diversity of the Millennium Seed Bank collection of legumes (Leguminosae). We compared the collection with all known legume genera, their known geographic range (at country and regional levels), and a genus-level phylogeny of the legume family constructed for this study. Over half the phylogenetic diversity of legumes at the genus level was represented in the Millennium Seed Bank. However, pragmatic prioritization of species of economic importance and endangerment has led to the banking of a less-than-optimal phylogenetic diversity and prioritization of range-restricted species risks an underdispersed collection. The current state of the phylogenetic diversity of legumes in the Millennium Seed Bank could be substantially improved through the strategic banking of relatively few additional taxa. Our method draws on tools that are widely applied to in situ conservation planning, and it can be used to evaluate and improve the phylogenetic diversity of ex situ collections. PMID:25196170

  10. Creating a front porch in systems of care: improving access to behavioral health services for diverse children and families.

    PubMed

    Callejas, Linda M; Hernandez, Mario; Nesman, Teresa; Mowery, Debra

    2010-02-01

    Despite recognition of the central role that service accessibility (and availability) should assume within a system of care, the definition proposed in the feature article of this special issue does not identify specific factors that systems of care must take into account in order to serve diverse children with serious emotional disturbance and their families in a culturally competent manner. This paper provides support for inclusion of the concepts of access and availability in the system of care definition and presents important factors that systems of care must take into account in order to increase access in a culturally competent manner, a core system of care value.

  11. Diverse Thinking about Diversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaplan, Sandra N.

    2013-01-01

    This article focuses on the concept of diversity in educational decision making. It is noted that the differences that distinguish the needs, interests and abilities are identified by educators. It lists misconceptions resulting from not attending to within-group diversity, and states that a "loss of self" for individual members of…

  12. Improving the Quality of Continuing Higher Educators' Leadership Role in Economic and Community Development Planning. Research Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ferro, Trenton R.

    In response to a 1991 call issued by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, eight institutions were selected to participate in a model process designed to involve higher education in the economics of community development. They were: Bloomsburg University, Chadron State College, Kean College of New Jersey, Murray State…

  13. Organizing Hazards, Engineering Disasters? Improving the Recognition of Political-Economic Factors in the Creation of Disasters

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freudenburg, William R.; Gramling, Robert; Laska, Shirley; Erikson, Kai T.

    2008-01-01

    Disaster studies have made important progress in recognizing the unequally distributed consequences of disasters, but there has been less progress in analyzing social factors that help create "natural" disasters. Even well-known patterns of hazard-creation tend to be interpreted generically--as representing "economic development" or…

  14. Social and Economic Benefits of Improved Adult Literacy: Towards a Better Understanding. An Adult Literacy National Project Report

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hartley, Robyn; Horne, Jackie

    2006-01-01

    Assessing the social and economic costs of poor adult literacy and numeracy skills, and the benefits of investing in such skills, is largely unchartered territory in Australia. This feasibility study explores the frameworks and methodologies available for determining and measuring such benefits and costs across a number of life domains, including…

  15. Genome-wide comparative diversity uncovers multiple targets of selection for improvement in hexaploid wheat landrace and cultivars

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Domesticated crops have experienced strong human-driven selection aimed at the development of improved varieties adapted to local conditions. To detect regions of the wheat genome subject to selection during improvement, we developed a high-throughput array to interrogate 9,000 gene-associated DNA m...

  16. Application of Reservoir Characterization and Advanced Technology to Improve Recovery and Economics in a Lower Quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate Reservoir, Class II

    SciTech Connect

    Hickman, T. Scott; Justice, James J.; Egg, Rebecca

    2001-08-07

    The Oxy operated Class 2 Project at West Welch Project is designed to demonstrate how the use of advanced technology can improve the economics of miscible CO2 injection projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate reservoirs. The research and design phase (Budget Period 1) primarily involved advanced reservoir demonstration characterization. The current demonstration phase (Budget Period 2) is the implementation of the reservoir management plan for an optimum miscible CO2 flood design based on the reservoir characterization.

  17. Improved (ERTS) information and its impact on U.S. markets for agricultural commodities: A quantitiative economic investigation of production, distribution and net export effects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1974-01-01

    An econometric investigation into the markets for agricultural commodities is summarized. An overview of the effort including the objectives, scope, and architecture of the analysis and the estimation strategy employed is presented. The major empirical results and policy conclusions are set forth. These results and conclusions focus on the economic importance of improved crop forecasts, U.S. exports, and government policy operations. A number of promising avenues of further investigation are suggested.

  18. Economic Benefits of Improved Information on Worldwide Crop Production: An Optimal Decision Model of Production and Distribution with Application to Wheat, Corn, and Soybeans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Andrews, J.

    1977-01-01

    An optimal decision model of crop production, trade, and storage was developed for use in estimating the economic consequences of improved forecasts and estimates of worldwide crop production. The model extends earlier distribution benefits models to include production effects as well. Application to improved information systems meeting the goals set in the large area crop inventory experiment (LACIE) indicates annual benefits to the United States of $200 to $250 million for wheat, $50 to $100 million for corn, and $6 to $11 million for soybeans, using conservative assumptions on expected LANDSAT system performance.

  19. High gene flow and genetic diversity in three economically important Zanthoxylum Spp. of Upper Brahmaputra Valley Zone of NE India using molecular markers.

    PubMed

    Medhi, K; Sarmah, D K; Deka, M; Bhau, B S

    2014-12-01

    The genetic diversity in Zanthoxylum species viz.  Zanthoxylum nitidum, Zanthoxylum oxyphyllum and Zanthoxylum rhesta collected from the Upper Brahmaputra Valley Zone of Assam (NE India) was amplified using 13 random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers and 9 inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers. RAPD markers were able to detect 81.82% polymorphism whereas ISSR detected 98.02% polymorphism. The genetic similarities were analyzed from the dendrogram constructed by RAPD and ISSR fingerprinting methods which divided the 3 species of Zanthoxylum into 3 clear different clusters. The principle component analysis (PCA) was carried out to confirm the clustering pattern of RAPD and ISSR analysis. Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) revealed the presence of significant variability between different Zanthoxylum species and within the species by both RAPD and ISSR markers. Z. nitidum was found to be sharing a high degree of variation with the other two Zanthoxylum species under study. The Nei's gene diversity (h), Shannon's information index (I), observed number of alleles (na) and effective number of alleles (ne) were also found to be higher in ISSR markers (0.3526, 0.5230, 1.9802 and 1.6145) than in RAPD markers (0.3144, 0.4610, 1.8182 and 1.5571). The values for total genotype diversity for among population (HT), within population diversity (Hs) and gene flow (Nm) were more in ISSR (0.3491, 0.2644 and 1.5610) than RAPD (0.3128, 0.2264 and 1.3087) but the mean coefficient of gene differentiation (GST) was more in RAPD (0.2764) than ISSR (0.2426). A comparison of this two finger printing methods was done by calculating MR, EMI and MI. The correlation coefficient between data matrices of RAPD and ISSR based on Mantel test was found to be significant (r = 0.65612). PMID:25606454

  20. High gene flow and genetic diversity in three economically important Zanthoxylum Spp. of Upper Brahmaputra Valley Zone of NE India using molecular markers

    PubMed Central

    Medhi, K.; Sarmah, D.K.; Deka, M.; Bhau, B.S.

    2014-01-01

    The genetic diversity in Zanthoxylum species viz.  Zanthoxylum nitidum, Zanthoxylum oxyphyllum and Zanthoxylum rhesta collected from the Upper Brahmaputra Valley Zone of Assam (NE India) was amplified using 13 random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers and 9 inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers. RAPD markers were able to detect 81.82% polymorphism whereas ISSR detected 98.02% polymorphism. The genetic similarities were analyzed from the dendrogram constructed by RAPD and ISSR fingerprinting methods which divided the 3 species of Zanthoxylum into 3 clear different clusters. The principle component analysis (PCA) was carried out to confirm the clustering pattern of RAPD and ISSR analysis. Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) revealed the presence of significant variability between different Zanthoxylum species and within the species by both RAPD and ISSR markers. Z. nitidum was found to be sharing a high degree of variation with the other two Zanthoxylum species under study. The Nei's gene diversity (h), Shannon's information index (I), observed number of alleles (na) and effective number of alleles (ne) were also found to be higher in ISSR markers (0.3526, 0.5230, 1.9802 and 1.6145) than in RAPD markers (0.3144, 0.4610, 1.8182 and 1.5571). The values for total genotype diversity for among population (HT), within population diversity (Hs) and gene flow (Nm) were more in ISSR (0.3491, 0.2644 and 1.5610) than RAPD (0.3128, 0.2264 and 1.3087) but the mean coefficient of gene differentiation (GST) was more in RAPD (0.2764) than ISSR (0.2426). A comparison of this two finger printing methods was done by calculating MR, EMI and MI. The correlation coefficient between data matrices of RAPD and ISSR based on Mantel test was found to be significant (r = 0.65612). PMID:25606454

  1. Improvements for comparative analysis of changes in diversity of microbial communities using internal standards in PCR-DGGE.

    PubMed

    Petersen, Dorthe Groth; Dahllöf, Ingela

    2005-08-01

    The use of internal standards both during DNA extraction and PCR-DGGE procedure gives the opportunity to analyse the relative abundance of individual species back to the original sample, thereby facilitating relative comparative analysis of diversity. Internal standards were used throughout the DNA extraction and PCR-DGGE to compensate for experimental variability. Such variability causes decreased reproducibility among replicate samples as well as compromise comparisons between samples, since experimental errors cannot be differentiated from actual changes in the community abundance and structure. The use of internal standards during DNA extraction and PCR-DGGE is suitable for ecological and ecotoxicological experiments with microbial communities, where relative changes in the community abundance and structure are studied. We have developed a protocol Internal Standards in Molecular Analysis of Diversity (ISMAD) that is simple to use, inexpensive, rapid to perform and it does not require additional samples to be processed. The internal standard for DNA extraction (ExtrIS) is a fluorescent 510-basepair PCR product which is added to the samples prior to DNA extraction, recovered together with the extracted DNA from the samples and analysed with fluorescence spectrophotometry. The use of ExtrIS during isolation of sample DNA significantly reduced variation among replicate samples. The PCR internal standard (PCR(IS)) originates from the Drosophila melanogaster genome and is a 140-basepair long PCR product, which is amplified by non-competitive primers in the same PCR reaction tubes as the target DNA and analysed together with the target PCR product on the same DGGE gel. The use of PCR(IS) during PCR significantly reduced variation among replicate samples both when assessing total PCR product and when comparing bands representing species on a DGGE gel. The entire ISMAD protocol was shown to accurately describe changes in relative abundance in an environmental sample

  2. Antibody VH and VL recombination using phage and ribosome display technologies reveals distinct structural routes to affinity improvements with VH-VL interface residues providing important structural diversity.

    PubMed

    Groves, Maria A T; Amanuel, Lily; Campbell, Jamie I; Rees, D Gareth; Sridharan, Sudharsan; Finch, Donna K; Lowe, David C; Vaughan, Tristan J

    2014-01-01

    In vitro selection technologies are an important means of affinity maturing antibodies to generate the optimal therapeutic profile for a particular disease target. Here, we describe the isolation of a parent antibody, KENB061 using phage display and solution phase selections with soluble biotinylated human IL-1R1. KENB061 was affinity matured using phage display and targeted mutagenesis of VH and VL CDR3 using NNS randomization. Affinity matured VHCDR3 and VLCDR3 library blocks were recombined and selected using phage and ribosome display protocol. A direct comparison of the phage and ribosome display antibodies generated was made to determine their functional characteristics.In our analyses, we observed distinct differences in the pattern of beneficial mutations in antibodies derived from phage and ribosome display selections, and discovered the lead antibody Jedi067 had a ~3700-fold improvement in KD over the parent KENB061. We constructed a homology model of the Fv region of Jedi067 to map the specific positions where mutations occurred in the CDR3 loops. For VL CDR3, positions 94 to 97 carry greater diversity in the ribosome display variants compared with the phage display. The positions 95a, 95b and 96 of VLCDR3 form part of the interface with VH in this model. The model shows that positions 96, 98, 100e, 100f, 100 g, 100h, 100i and 101 of the VHCDR3 include residues at the VH and VL interface. Importantly, Leu96 and Tyr98 are conserved at the interface positions in both phage and ribosome display indicating their importance in maintaining the VH-VL interface. For antibodies derived from ribosome display, there is significant diversity at residues 100a to 100f of the VH CDR3 compared with phage display. A unique deletion of isoleucine at position 102 of the lead candidate, Jedi067, also occurs in the VHCDR3.As anticipated, recombining the mutations via ribosome display led to a greater structural diversity, particularly in the heavy chain CDR3, which in turn

  3. The improvement of the effectiveness of using natural gas in hot-water boilers by means of condensing economizers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vnukov, A. K.; Rozanova, F. A.

    2013-07-01

    The paper describes the results of the study of the mathematical model of a condensing economizer (CE) interacting with the technological parameter of the particular district heating station. This model has been developed by the authors. It is shown that the CE, due to condensation of water vapor and augmentation of convective heat exchange between products of natural gas combustion, makes it possible to save up to 8% of fuel.

  4. Project (inverted exclamation mark)EXITO!: success through diversity and universality for outcomes improvement among Hispanic home care patients.

    PubMed

    Woerner, Louise; Espinosa, Javier; Bourne, Susan; O'Toole, Marie; Ingersoll, Gail L

    2009-01-01

    The National Health Disparities Report notes that Hispanics have poorer quality of care in 23 of 38 core measures. The result of this disparity is great personal and health system costs, which could be reduced. Prior studies have focused on access and language. We studied outcomes improvement. The purpose of this project was to develop a replicable theory-based outcomes improvement model for delivery of nursing care to Hispanic patients. The Leininger Sunrise Enabler approach was used to design a program specific to the cultural needs of a home care population. Outcome and Assessment Information Set (OASIS) data from 125 unduplicated home care patients were tracked. Nursing care delivery was analyzed using ethnographic research techniques. Delivery of nursing care using a culturally congruent approach reduced acute hospitalization and emergent care visits. Medication management and customer and nursing satisfaction also improved. National standards for culturally and linguistically appropriate services in health care help reduce healthcare disparities, but improving Hispanic outcomes requires moving beyond symptoms and symptom management to transcultural care. The estimated savings to the health care system are significant. PMID:19789004

  5. An environmental, economic, and social assessment of improving cattle finishing weight or average daily gain within U.S. beef production.

    PubMed

    White, R R; Capper, J L

    2013-12-01

    The objective of this study was to assess environmental impact, economic viability, and social acceptability of 3 beef production systems with differing levels of efficiency. A deterministic model of U.S. beef production was used to predict the number of animals required to produce 1 × 10(9) kg HCW beef. Three production treatments were compared, 1 representing average U.S. production (control), 1 with a 15% increase in ADG, and 1 with a 15% increase in finishing weight (FW). For each treatment, various socioeconomic scenarios were compared to account for uncertainty in producer and consumer behavior. Environmental impact metrics included feed consumption, land use, water use, greenhouse gas emissions (GHGe), and N and P excretion. Feed cost, animal purchase cost, animal sales revenue, and income over costs (IOVC) were used as metrics of economic viability. Willingness to pay (WTP) was used to identify improvements or reductions in social acceptability. When ADG improved, feedstuff consumption, land use, and water use decreased by 6.4%, 3.2%, and 12.3%, respectively, compared with the control. Carbon footprint decreased 11.7% and N and P excretion were reduced by 4% and 13.8%, respectively. When FW improved, decreases were seen in feedstuff consumption (12.1%), water use (9.2%). and land use (15.5%); total GHGe decreased 14.7%; and N and P excretion decreased by 10.1% and 17.2%, compared with the control. Changes in IOVC were dependent on socioeconomic scenario. When the ADG scenario was compared with the control, changes in sector profitability ranged from 51 to 117% (cow-calf), -38 to 157% (stocker), and 37 to 134% (feedlot). When improved FW was compared, changes in cow-calf profit ranged from 67% to 143%, stocker profit ranged from -41% to 155% and feedlot profit ranged from 37% to 136%. When WTP was based on marketing beef being more efficiently produced, WTP improved by 10%; thus, social acceptability increased. When marketing was based on production

  6. An environmental, economic, and social assessment of improving cattle finishing weight or average daily gain within U.S. beef production.

    PubMed

    White, R R; Capper, J L

    2013-12-01

    The objective of this study was to assess environmental impact, economic viability, and social acceptability of 3 beef production systems with differing levels of efficiency. A deterministic model of U.S. beef production was used to predict the number of animals required to produce 1 × 10(9) kg HCW beef. Three production treatments were compared, 1 representing average U.S. production (control), 1 with a 15% increase in ADG, and 1 with a 15% increase in finishing weight (FW). For each treatment, various socioeconomic scenarios were compared to account for uncertainty in producer and consumer behavior. Environmental impact metrics included feed consumption, land use, water use, greenhouse gas emissions (GHGe), and N and P excretion. Feed cost, animal purchase cost, animal sales revenue, and income over costs (IOVC) were used as metrics of economic viability. Willingness to pay (WTP) was used to identify improvements or reductions in social acceptability. When ADG improved, feedstuff consumption, land use, and water use decreased by 6.4%, 3.2%, and 12.3%, respectively, compared with the control. Carbon footprint decreased 11.7% and N and P excretion were reduced by 4% and 13.8%, respectively. When FW improved, decreases were seen in feedstuff consumption (12.1%), water use (9.2%). and land use (15.5%); total GHGe decreased 14.7%; and N and P excretion decreased by 10.1% and 17.2%, compared with the control. Changes in IOVC were dependent on socioeconomic scenario. When the ADG scenario was compared with the control, changes in sector profitability ranged from 51 to 117% (cow-calf), -38 to 157% (stocker), and 37 to 134% (feedlot). When improved FW was compared, changes in cow-calf profit ranged from 67% to 143%, stocker profit ranged from -41% to 155% and feedlot profit ranged from 37% to 136%. When WTP was based on marketing beef being more efficiently produced, WTP improved by 10%; thus, social acceptability increased. When marketing was based on production

  7. Assessing potential modifications to the activated sludge process to improve simultaneous removal of a diverse range of micropollutants.

    PubMed

    Petrie, Bruce; McAdam, Ewan J; Lester, John N; Cartmell, Elise

    2014-10-01

    It is proposed that wastewater treatment facilities meet legislated discharge limits for a range of micropollutants. However, the heterogeneity of these micropollutants in wastewaters make removal difficult to predict since their chemistry is so diverse. In this study, a range of organic and inorganic micropollutants known to be preferentially removed via different mechanisms were selected to challenge the activated sludge process (ASP) and determine its potential to achieve simultaneous micropollutant removal. At a fixed hydraulic retention time (HRT) of 8 h, the influence of an increase in solids retention time (SRT) on removal was evaluated. Maximum achievable micropollutant removal was recorded for all chemicals (estrogens, nonylphenolics and metals) at the highest SRT studied (27 days). Also, optimisation of HRT by extension to 24 h further augmented organic biodegradation. Most notable was the enhancement in removal of the considerably recalcitrant synthetic estrogen 17α-ethinylestradiol which increased to 65 ± 19%. Regression analysis indicates that this enhanced micropollutant behaviour is ostensibly related to the concomitant reduction in food: microorganism ratio. Interestingly, extended HRT also initiated nonylphenol biodegradation which has not been consistently observed previously in real wastewaters. However, extending HRT increased the solubilisation of particulate bound metals, increasing effluent aqueous metals concentrations (i.e., 0.45 μm filtered) by >100%. This is significant as only the aqueous metal phase is to be considered for environmental compliance. Consequently, identification of an optimum process condition for generic micropollutant removal is expected to favour a more integrated approach where upstream process unit optimisation (i.e., primary sedimentation) is demanded to reduce loading of the particle bound metal phase onto the ASP, thereby enabling longer HRT in the ASP to be considered for optimum removal of organic

  8. Diverse Attitudes to and Understandings of Spontaneous Awakening Trials (SAT): Results from a Statewide Quality Improvement Collaborative

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Melissa A; Krein, Sarah L; George, Christine T; Watson, Sam R; Hyzy, Robert C; Iwashyna, Theodore J

    2013-01-01

    Objective Spontaneous awakening trials (SATs) improve outcomes in mechanically ventilated patients, but implementation remains erratic. We examined variation in reported practice, prevalence of attitudes and fears regarding SATs, and organizational practices associated with routine implementation of SATs in an ICU quality improvement collaborative. Design Written survey. Setting Michigan Health and Hospital Association’s Keystone ICU, a quality improvement collaborative of 73 hospitals. Subjects Attendees of the yearly Keystone ICU meeting, January 2011, including nurses, physicians, hospital administrators, and other healthcare professionals. Intervention Respondents were asked about institutional characteristics, SAT practice, attitudes and barriers regarding SATs, and organizational cultural characteristics that might influence SAT practice. The association of organizational cultural characteristics and attitudes with reported SAT use was evaluated using logistic regression. Measurements and Main Results 319 participants attended the meeting. The survey response rate was 83.4%. Respondents reported wide variation in approach to SAT performance and patient selection. 48.6% of respondents reported regular SAT use, defined as >75% of mechanically ventilated patients undergoing SATs each day. In bivariable analysis, addressing sedation goals routinely in rounds and having SATs as part of unit culture were positively associated with regular SAT use, while the perception that SATs increased short term adverse effects, staff fears of SATs, and the perception that SATs are hard work were negatively associated with regular SAT use. In multivariable analysis, only addressing sedation in rounds (OR 2.85 [95%CI 1.55–5.23]), incorporation of SATs into unit culture (OR 3.36 [95% CI 1.75–6.43]), and the perception that SATs are hard work (OR 0.53 [95% CI 0.30–0.96]) remained statistically significantly associated with regular SAT use. Respondents in managerial

  9. DNA barcoding unmasks overlooked diversity improving knowledge on the composition and origins of the Churchill algal flora

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Sampling expeditions to Churchill in the Canadian subarctic were completed with the aim of compiling a molecular-assisted survey of the macroalgal flora (seaweeds) for comparison to published accounts for this area, which are based on morphological identifications. Further, because the Churchill region was covered by ice until recently (~10,000 before present), the current algal flora has had to migrate from adjacent waters into that region. We used our DNA barcode data to predict the relative contribution of the North Atlantic and North Pacific floras (Likely Source Region) in repopulating the Churchill region following the most recent glacial retreat. Results We processed 422 collections representing ~50 morpho-species, which is the approximate number reported for this region, and generated DNA barcode data for 346 of these. In contrast to the morpho-species count, we recovered 57 genetic groups indicating overlooked species (this despite failing to generate barcode data for six of the ~50 morpho-species). However, we additionally uncovered numerous inconsistencies between the species that are currently listed in the Churchill flora (again as a result of overlooked species diversity, but combined with taxonomic confusion) and those identified following our molecular analyses including eight new records and another 17 genetic complexes in need of further study. Based on a comparison of DNA barcode data from the Churchill flora to collections from the contiguous Atlantic and Pacific floras we estimate that minimally 21% (possibly as much as 44%) of the Churchill flora was established by migration from the Pacific region with the balance of species arriving from the Atlantic (predominantly North American populations) following the last glacial retreat. Conclusions Owing to difficulties associated with the morphological identification of macroalgae, our results indicate that current comprehension of the Canadian Arctic flora is weak. We consider that

  10. Economic consequences of improved temperature forecasts: An experiment with the Florida citrus growers (an update of control group results)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Braen, C.

    1978-01-01

    The economic experiment, the results obtained to date and the work which still remains to be done are summarized. Specifically, the experiment design is described in detail as are the developed data collection methodology and procedures, sampling plan, data reduction techniques, cost and loss models, establishment of frost severity measures, data obtained from citrus growers, National Weather Service and Federal Crop Insurance Corp. Resulting protection costs and crop losses for the control group sample, extrapolation of results of control group to the Florida citrus industry and the method for normalization of these results to a normal or average frost season so that results may be compared with anticipated similar results from test group measurements are discussed.

  11. Prospects for improving CO2 fixation in C3-crops through understanding C4-Rubisco biogenesis and catalytic diversity.

    PubMed

    Sharwood, Robert E; Ghannoum, Oula; Whitney, Spencer M

    2016-06-01

    By operating a CO2 concentrating mechanism, C4-photosynthesis offers highly successful solutions to remedy the inefficiency of the CO2-fixing enzyme Rubisco. C4-plant Rubisco has characteristically evolved faster carboxylation rates with low CO2 affinity. Owing to high CO2 concentrations in bundle sheath chloroplasts, faster Rubisco enhances resource use efficiency in C4 plants by reducing the energy and carbon costs associated with photorespiration and lowering the nitrogen investment in Rubisco. Here, we show that C4-Rubisco from some NADP-ME species, such as maize, are also of potential benefit to C3-photosynthesis under current and future atmospheric CO2 pressures. Realizing this bioengineering endeavour necessitates improved understanding of the biogenesis requirements and catalytic variability of C4-Rubisco, as well as the development of transformation capabilities to engineer Rubisco in a wider variety of food and fibre crops. PMID:27131319

  12. Long-term changes in abundance and diversity of macrophyte and waterfowl populations in an estuary with exotic macrophytes and improving water quality

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rybicki, N.B.; Landwehr, J.M.

    2007-01-01

    We assessed species-specific coverage (km2) of a submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) community in the fresh and upper oligohaline Potomac Estuary from 1985 to 2001 using a method combining field observations of species-proportional coverage data with congruent remotely sensed coverage and density (percent canopy cover) data. Biomass (estimated by density-weighted coverage) of individual species was calculated. Under improving water quality conditions, exotic SAV species did not displace native SAV; rather, the percent of natives increased over time. While coverage-based diversity did fluctuate and increased, richness-based community turnover rates were not significantly different from zero. SAV diversity was negatively related to nitrogen concentration. Differences in functional traits, such as reproductive potential, between the dominant native and exotic species may explain some interannual patterns in SAV. Biomass of native, as well as exotic, SAV species varied with factors affecting water column light attenuation. We also show a positive response by a higher trophic level, waterfowl, to SAV communities dominated by exotic SAV from 1959 to 2001. ?? 2007, by the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography, Inc.

  13. Improved yield of high molecular weight DNA coincides with increased microbial diversity access from iron oxide cemented sub-surface clay environments.

    PubMed

    Hurt, Richard A; Robeson, Michael S; Shakya, Migun; Moberly, James G; Vishnivetskaya, Tatiana A; Gu, Baohua; Elias, Dwayne A

    2014-01-01

    Despite over three decades of progress, extraction of high molecular weight (HMW) DNA from high clay soils or iron oxide cemented clay has remained challenging. HMW DNA is desirable for next generation sequencing as it yields the most comprehensive coverage. Several DNA extraction procedures were compared from samples that exhibit strong nucleic acid adsorption. pH manipulation or use of alternative ion solutions offered no improvement in nucleic acid recovery. Lysis by liquid N2 grinding in concentrated guanidine followed by concentrated sodium phosphate extraction supported HMW DNA recovery from clays high in iron oxides. DNA recovered using 1 M sodium phosphate buffer (PB) as a competitive desorptive wash was 15.22±2.33 µg DNA/g clay, with most DNA consisting of >20 Kb fragments, compared to 2.46±0.25 µg DNA/g clay with the Powerlyzer system (MoBio). Increasing PB concentration in the lysis reagent coincided with increasing DNA fragment length during initial extraction. Rarefaction plots of 16S rRNA (V1-V3 region) pyrosequencing from A-horizon and clay soils showed an ∼80% and ∼400% larger accessed diversity compared to the Powerlyzer soil DNA system, respectively. The observed diversity from the Firmicutes showed the strongest increase with >3-fold more operational taxonomic units (OTU) recovered.

  14. Improving Public-spending Efficiency in Czech Regions and Municipalities. OECD Economics Department Working Papers, No. 499

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hemmings, Philip

    2006-01-01

    This paper looks at ways of ensuring Czech regions and municipalities are fully motivated to make efficiency improvements in public service provision and so help achieve countrywide fiscal sustainability. The very large number of small municipalities in the Czech Republic means that scale economies are difficult to exploit and the policy options…

  15. A qualitative study of diverse experts' views about barriers and strategies to improve the diets and health of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) beneficiaries.

    PubMed

    Leung, Cindy W; Hoffnagle, Elena E; Lindsay, Ana C; Lofink, Hayley E; Hoffman, Vanessa A; Turrell, Sophie; Willett, Walter C; Blumenthal, Susan J

    2013-01-01

    The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), the largest federal food assistance program, currently serves 44.7 million Americans with a budget of $75 billion in 2011. This study engaged leading experts for in-depth, semi-structured interviews to explore their opinions concerning the existing challenges and barriers to eating nutritiously in SNAP. Experts also proposed strategies for improving nutritional status among SNAP recipients. Twenty-seven individuals were interviewed from advocacy, government, industry, and research organizations. Interviews were recorded, transcribed, coded, and analyzed for thematic content. The high cost of nutrient-rich foods, inadequate SNAP benefits, limited access to purchasing healthy foods, and environmental factors associated with poverty were identified as barriers that influence nutrition among low-income households in the United States. Six themes emerged among respondents from diverse sectors about how to address these challenges, including providing SNAP participants with incentives to purchase nutrient-rich food consistent with the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, restricting the purchase of nutrient-poor foods and beverages with program benefits, modifying the frequency of SNAP benefit distribution, enhancing nutrition education, improving the SNAP retailer environment, and increasing state and federal level coordination and consistency of program implementation. Given the recent dramatic increase in SNAP enrollment, policymakers must address existing barriers as well as consider new strategies to improve nutrition policies in SNAP so that the program can continue to address food insecurity needs as well as provide a healthful diet for SNAP beneficiaries.

  16. Application of Reservoir Characterization and Advanced Technology to Improve Recovery and Economics in a Lower Quality Shallow Shelf San Andres Reservoir.

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor, A.R.; Hickman, T.S.; Justice, J.J.

    1997-07-30

    The Oxy West Welch Project is designed to demonstrate how the use of advanced technology can improve the economics of miscible CO{sub 2} injection projects in lower quality shallow shelf carbonate reservoirs. The research and development phase (Budget Period 1) primarily involved advance and reservoir characterization. The current demonstration phase (Budget Period 2) will implement the reservoir management plan for an optimum miscible CO{sub 2} flood design based on the reservoir characterization. Although Budget Period I officially ended 12/31/96, reservoir characterization and optimum flood design has continued into the first part of Budget Period 2. Specifically, the geologic model was enhanced by integration of the 3-D seismic interpretations. This resulted in improved history match by the simulator and more accurate predictions of flood performance on which to base the project design. The majority of the project design work has been completed, material specifications provided and bids solicited. Preparation of the demonstration area is well underway.

  17. Improvement of the Koradi parallel algorithm for molecular dynamics and application to the economic organization and optimization of recycling costs of waste electrical and electronic equipment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cabria, I.; Queiruga, D.

    2005-09-01

    A parallel algorithm for molecular dynamics, MD, the Koradi point-centered decomposition algorithm, especially designed for inhomogeneous systems, is improved and applied to the organization and optimization of recycling costs of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment, WEEE, and also to systems of atoms. This organization requires the numbers and locations of storage centers and recycling plants of the WEEE that minimize the recycling cost. The Koradi algorithm finds these optimal numbers and locations, dealing very fast with large numbers of data, in contrast with other methods. The changes of the original algorithm (different ways of generating the initial centers and especially the requirement of location convergence) improve its performance for this economic problem and also for MD simulations.

  18. High-throughput sequence analysis reveals structural diversity and improved potency among RNA inhibitors of HIV reverse transcriptase

    PubMed Central

    Ditzler, Mark A.; Lange, Margaret J.; Bose, Debojit; Bottoms, Christopher A.; Virkler, Katherine F.; Sawyer, Andrew W.; Whatley, Angela S.; Spollen, William; Givan, Scott A.; Burke, Donald H.

    2013-01-01

    Systematic evolution of ligands through exponential enrichment (SELEX) is a well-established method for generating nucleic acid populations that are enriched for specified functions. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) enhances the power of comparative sequence analysis to reveal details of how RNAs within these populations recognize their targets. We used HTS analysis to evaluate RNA populations selected to bind type I human immunodeficiency virus reverse transcriptase (RT). The populations are enriched in RNAs of independent lineages that converge on shared motifs and in clusters of RNAs with nearly identical sequences that share common ancestry. Both of these features informed inferences of the secondary structures of enriched RNAs, their minimal structural requirements and their stabilities in RT-aptamer complexes. Monitoring population dynamics in response to increasing selection pressure revealed RNA inhibitors of RT that are more potent than the previously identified pseudoknots. Improved potency was observed for inhibition of both purified RT in enzymatic assays and viral replication in cell-based assays. Structural and functional details of converged motifs that are obscured by simple consensus descriptions are also revealed by the HTS analysis. The approach presented here can readily be generalized for the efficient and systematic post-SELEX development of aptamers for down-stream applications. PMID:23241386

  19. Improved ethanol yield and reduced minimum ethanol selling price (MESP) by modifying low severity dilute acid pretreatment with deacetylation and mechanical refining: 2) Techno-economic analysis

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Our companion paper discussed the yield benefits achieved by integrating deacetylation, mechanical refining, and washing with low acid and low temperature pretreatment. To evaluate the impact of the modified process on the economic feasibility, a techno-economic analysis (TEA) was performed based on the experimental data presented in the companion paper. Results The cost benefits of dilute acid pretreatment technology combined with the process alternatives of deacetylation, mechanical refining, and pretreated solids washing were evaluated using cost benefit analysis within a conceptual modeling framework. Control cases were pretreated at much lower acid loadings and temperatures than used those in the NREL 2011 design case, resulting in much lower annual ethanol production. Therefore, the minimum ethanol selling prices (MESP) of the control cases were $0.41-$0.77 higher than the $2.15/gallon MESP of the design case. This increment is highly dependent on the carbohydrate content in the corn stover. However, if pretreatment was employed with either deacetylation or mechanical refining, the MESPs were reduced by $0.23-$0.30/gallon. Combing both steps could lower the MESP further by $0.44 ~ $0.54. Washing of the pretreated solids could also greatly improve the final ethanol yields. However, the large capital cost of the solid–liquid separation unit negatively influences the process economics. Finally, sensitivity analysis was performed to study the effect of the cost of the pretreatment reactor and the energy input for mechanical refining. A 50% cost reduction in the pretreatment reactor cost reduced the MESP of the entire conversion process by $0.11-$0.14/gallon, while a 10-fold increase in energy input for mechanical refining will increase the MESP by $0.07/gallon. Conclusion Deacetylation and mechanical refining process options combined with low acid, low severity pretreatments show improvements in ethanol yields and calculated MESP for cellulosic

  20. Improved oil production using economical biopolymer-surfactant blends for profile modification and mobility control. Final report, November 1998

    SciTech Connect

    Gabitto, J.; Barrufet, M.A.; Burnett, D.B.

    1998-12-01

    In the past, starch hydrocolloids have not been effective alternates to partially hydrolyzed polyacrylamides, copolymers, and xanthan gum polymers as water shutoff agents in fractures and in matrix flow configurations. Poor injectivity and questionable stability have usually prevented their use in profile control applications. However, in recent years, the demands of the oil and gas drilling industry have led to the development of new drilling, drill-in, and completion fluids with improved functionality. New types of modified starches have contributed to these new drill in fluid (DIF) products. It was felt that the properties of the new products would lend themselves to applications in improved recovery. The objective of this project has been to evaluate the use of agricultural starch biopolymers for gelled and polymer applications in oil recovery processes. The authors believe that there is great potential for finding new functional starch products because of their chemical and structural flexibility, low cost, and wide availability. The goals of this project have been, therefore, to systematically investigate how the physical properties and chemical composition of relatively inexpensive agricultural starch products will influence their use as effective selective permeability control agents or as gels for water shut-off.

  1. Managing diversity in hospitals.

    PubMed

    Schwartz, R H; Sullivan, D B

    1993-01-01

    Hospital work force diversity, although potentially a source of creativity and improved problem solving, is often a source of political strife and the mistreatment of people based on their identification with one or another of the diverse groups that are employed in hospitals. Factors linked to these phenomena are discussed and are the basis for suggestions about how administrators can deal with the organizational pathologies that are often associated with unmanaged work force diversity.

  2. Declining Trend of Hepatitis A Seroepidemiology in Association with Improved Public Health and Economic Status of Thailand

    PubMed Central

    Sa-nguanmoo, Pattaratida; Posuwan, Nawarat; Vichaiwattana, Preeyaporn; Vuthitanachot, Viboonsak; Saelao, Siriporn; Foonoi, Monthana; Fakthongyoo, Apinya; Makaroon, Jamorn; Srisingh, Klaita; Asawarachun, Duangporn; Owatanapanich, Somchai; Wutthiratkowit, Norra; Tohtubtiang, Kraisorn; Vongpunsawad, Sompong; Yoocharoen, Pornsak; Poovorawan, Yong

    2016-01-01

    Hepatitis A virus (HAV) is transmitted via the fecal-oral route from contaminated food or water. As part of the most recent survey of viral hepatitis burden in Thailand, we analyzed the current seroprevalence of HAV in the country and compared with data dating back to 1971. From March to October, 2014, a total of 4,260 individuals between one month and 71 years of age from different geographical regions (North = 961; Central = 1,125; Northeast = 1,109; South = 1,065) were screened for anti-HAV IgG antibody using an automated chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay. Overall, 34.53% (1,471/4,260) possessed anti-HAV IgG antibody, and the age-standardized seroprevalence was 48.6%. Seroprevalence rates were 27.3% (North), 30.8% (Central), 33.8% (Northeast) and 45.8% (South) and were markedly lower than in the past studies especially among younger age groups. The overall trend showed an increase in the age by which 50% of the population were anti-HAV IgG antibody: 4.48 years (1971–1972), 6 (1976), 12.49 (1990), 36.02 (2004) and 42.03 (2014).This suggests that Thailand is transitioning from low to very low HAV endemicity. Lower prevalence of HAV correlated with improved healthcare system as measured by decreased infant mortality rate and improved national economy based on increased GDP per capita. The aging HAV immuno-naïve population may be rendered susceptible to potential HAV outbreaks similar to those in industrialized countries and may benefit from targeted vaccination of high-risk groups. PMID:27008531

  3. Declining Trend of Hepatitis A Seroepidemiology in Association with Improved Public Health and Economic Status of Thailand.

    PubMed

    Sa-nguanmoo, Pattaratida; Posuwan, Nawarat; Vichaiwattana, Preeyaporn; Vuthitanachot, Viboonsak; Saelao, Siriporn; Foonoi, Monthana; Fakthongyoo, Apinya; Makaroon, Jamorn; Srisingh, Klaita; Asawarachun, Duangporn; Owatanapanich, Somchai; Wutthiratkowit, Norra; Tohtubtiang, Kraisorn; Vongpunsawad, Sompong; Yoocharoen, Pornsak; Poovorawan, Yong

    2016-01-01

    Hepatitis A virus (HAV) is transmitted via the fecal-oral route from contaminated food or water. As part of the most recent survey of viral hepatitis burden in Thailand, we analyzed the current seroprevalence of HAV in the country and compared with data dating back to 1971. From March to October, 2014, a total of 4,260 individuals between one month and 71 years of age from different geographical regions (North = 961; Central = 1,125; Northeast = 1,109; South = 1,065) were screened for anti-HAV IgG antibody using an automated chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay. Overall, 34.53% (1,471/4,260) possessed anti-HAV IgG antibody, and the age-standardized seroprevalence was 48.6%. Seroprevalence rates were 27.3% (North), 30.8% (Central), 33.8% (Northeast) and 45.8% (South) and were markedly lower than in the past studies especially among younger age groups. The overall trend showed an increase in the age by which 50% of the population were anti-HAV IgG antibody: 4.48 years (1971-1972), 6 (1976), 12.49 (1990), 36.02 (2004) and 42.03 (2014).This suggests that Thailand is transitioning from low to very low HAV endemicity. Lower prevalence of HAV correlated with improved healthcare system as measured by decreased infant mortality rate and improved national economy based on increased GDP per capita. The aging HAV immuno-naïve population may be rendered susceptible to potential HAV outbreaks similar to those in industrialized countries and may benefit from targeted vaccination of high-risk groups.

  4. A cost of living longer: Projections of the effects of prospective mortality improvement on economic support ratios for 14 advanced economies.

    PubMed

    Parr, Nick; Li, Jackie; Tickle, Leonie

    2016-07-01

    The economic implications of increasing life expectancy are important concerns for governments in developed countries. The aims of this study were as follows: (i) to forecast mortality for 14 developed countries from 2010 to 2050, using the Poisson Common Factor Model; (ii) to project the effects of the forecast mortality patterns on support ratios; and (iii) to calculate labour force participation increases which could offset these effects. The forecast gains in life expectancy correlate negatively with current fertility. Pre-2050 support ratios are projected to fall most in Japan and east-central and southern Europe, and least in Sweden and Australia. A post-2050 recovery is projected for most east-central and southern European countries. The increases in labour force participation needed to counterbalance the effects of mortality improvement are greatest for Japan, Poland, and the Czech Republic, and least for the USA, Canada, Netherlands, and Sweden. The policy implications are discussed.

  5. APPLICATION OF RESERVOIR CHARACTERIZATION AND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE RECOVERY AND ECONOMICS IN A LOWER QUALITY SHALLOW SHELF SAN ANDRES RESERVOIR

    SciTech Connect

    Raj. Kumar; Keith Brown; T. Scott Hickman; James J. Justice

    2000-04-27

    The Class 2 Project at West Welch was designed to demonstrate the use of advanced technologies to enhance the economics of improved oil recovery (IOR) projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate (SSC) reservoirs, resulting in recovery of additional oil that would otherwise be left in the reservoir at project abandonment. Accurate reservoir description is critical to the effective evaluation and efficient design of IOR projects in the heterogeneous SSC reservoirs. Therefore, the majority of Budget Period 1 was devoted to reservoir characterization. Technologies being demonstrated include: (1) Advanced petrophysics; (2) Three-dimensional (3-D) seismic; (3) Crosswell bore tomography; (4) Advanced reservoir simulation; (5) Carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) stimulation treatments; (6) Hydraulic fracturing design and monitoring; and (7) Mobility control agents.

  6. APPLICATION OF RESERVOIR CHARACTERIZATION AND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE RECOVERY AND ECONOMICS IN A LOWER QUALITY SHALLOW SHELF SAN ANDRES RESERVOIR

    SciTech Connect

    T. Scott Hickman

    2003-01-17

    The Class 2 Project at West Welch was designed to demonstrate the use of advanced technologies to enhance the economics of improved oil recovery (IOR) projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate (SSC) reservoirs, resulting in recovery of additional oil that would otherwise be left in the reservoir at project abandonment. Accurate reservoir description is critical to the effective evaluation and efficient design of IOR projects in the heterogeneous SSC reservoirs. Therefore, the majority of Budget Period 1 was devoted to reservoir characterization. Technologies being demonstrated include: (1) Advanced petrophysics; (2) Three-dimensional (3-D) seismic; (3) Crosswell bore tomography; (4) Advanced reservoir simulation; (5) Carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) stimulation treatments; (6) Hydraulic fracturing design and monitoring; and (7) Mobility control agents.

  7. A cost of living longer: Projections of the effects of prospective mortality improvement on economic support ratios for 14 advanced economies.

    PubMed

    Parr, Nick; Li, Jackie; Tickle, Leonie

    2016-07-01

    The economic implications of increasing life expectancy are important concerns for governments in developed countries. The aims of this study were as follows: (i) to forecast mortality for 14 developed countries from 2010 to 2050, using the Poisson Common Factor Model; (ii) to project the effects of the forecast mortality patterns on support ratios; and (iii) to calculate labour force participation increases which could offset these effects. The forecast gains in life expectancy correlate negatively with current fertility. Pre-2050 support ratios are projected to fall most in Japan and east-central and southern Europe, and least in Sweden and Australia. A post-2050 recovery is projected for most east-central and southern European countries. The increases in labour force participation needed to counterbalance the effects of mortality improvement are greatest for Japan, Poland, and the Czech Republic, and least for the USA, Canada, Netherlands, and Sweden. The policy implications are discussed. PMID:27282412

  8. APPLICATION OF RESERVOIR CHARACTERIZATION AND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE RECOVERY AND ECONOMICS IN A LOWER QUALITY SHALLOW SHELF SAN ANDRES RESERVOIR

    SciTech Connect

    T. Scott Hickman; James J. Justice

    2001-06-16

    The Class 2 Project at West Welch was designed to demonstrate the use of advanced technologies to enhance the economics of improved oil recovery (IOR) projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate (SSC) reservoirs, resulting in recovery of additional oil that would otherwise be left in the reservoir at project abandonment. Accurate reservoir description is critical to the effective evaluation and efficient design of IOR projects in the heterogeneous SSC reservoirs. Therefore, the majority of Budget Period 1 was devoted to reservoir characterization. Technologies being demonstrated include: (1) Advanced petrophysics; (2) Three-dimensional (3-D) seismic; (3) Crosswell bore tomography; (4) Advanced reservoir simulation; (5) Carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) stimulation treatments; (6) Hydraulic fracturing design and monitoring; and (7) Mobility control agents.

  9. APPLICATION OF RESERVOIR CHARACTERIZATION AND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE RECOVERY AND ECONOMICS IN A LOWER QUALITY SHALLOW SHELF SAN ANDRES RESERVOIR

    SciTech Connect

    T. Scott Hickman; James J. Justice

    2001-08-10

    The Class 2 Project at West Welch was designed to demonstrate the use of advanced technologies to enhance the economics of improved oil recovery (IOR) projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate (SSC) reservoirs, resulting in recovery of additional oil that would otherwise be left in the reservoir at project abandonment. Accurate reservoir description is critical to the effective evaluation and efficient design of IOR projects in the heterogeneous SSC reservoirs. Therefore, the majority of Budget Period 1 was devoted to reservoir characterization. Technologies being demonstrated include: (1) Advanced petrophysics; (2) Three-dimensional (3-D) seismic; (3) Crosswell bore tomography; (4) Advanced reservoir simulation; (5) Carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) stimulation treatments; (6) Hydraulic fracturing design and monitoring; and (7) Mobility control agents.

  10. APPLICATION OF RESERVOIR CHARACTERIZATION AND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE RECOVERY AND ECONOMICS IN A LOWER QUALITY SHALLOW SHELF SAN ANDRES RESERVOIR

    SciTech Connect

    T. Scott Hickman; James J. Justice

    2001-12-11

    The Class 2 Project at West Welch was designed to demonstrate the use of advanced technologies to enhance the economics of improved oil recovery (IOR) projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate (SSC) reservoirs, resulting in recovery of additional oil that would otherwise be left in the reservoir at project abandonment. Accurate reservoir description is critical to the effective evaluation and efficient design of IOR projects in the heterogeneous SSC reservoirs. Therefore, the majority of Budget Period 1 was devoted to reservoir characterization. Technologies being demonstrated include: (1) Advanced petrophysics; (2) Three-dimensional (3-D) seismic; (3) Crosswell bore tomography; (4) Advanced reservoir simulation; (5) Carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) stimulation treatments; (6) Hydraulic fracturing design and monitoring; and (7) Mobility control agents.

  11. A randomized controlled trial to improve health among women receiving welfare in the US: the relationship between employment outcomes and the economic recession.

    PubMed

    Kneipp, Shawn M; Kairalla, John A; Sheely, Amanda L

    2013-03-01

    The high prevalence of health conditions among U.S. women receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF, or 'welfare') impedes the ability of many in this group to move from 'welfare-to-work', and the economic recession has likely exacerbated this problem. Despite this, few interventions have been developed to improve employment outcomes by addressing the health needs of women receiving TANF, and little is known about the impact of economic downturns on the employment trajectory of this group. Using data from a recent randomized controlled trial (RCT) that tested the efficacy of a public health nursing (PHN) intervention to address the chronic health condition needs of 432 American women receiving TANF, we examine the effect of the intervention and of recession exposure on employment. We further explore whether intervention effects were modified by select sociodemographic and health characteristics. Both marginal and more robust intervention effects were noted for employment-entry outcomes (any employment, p = 0.05 and time-to-employment, p = 0.01). There were significant effects for recession exposure on employment-entry (any employment, p = 0.002 and time-to-employment, p < 0.001). Neither the intervention nor recession exposure influenced longer-term employment outcomes (employment rate or maximum continuous employment). Intervention effects were not modified by age, education, prior TANF receipt, functional status, or recession exposure, suggesting the intervention was equally effective in improving employment-entry across a fairly heterogeneous group both before and after the recession onset. These findings advance our understanding of the health and employment dynamics among this group of disadvantaged women under variable macroeconomic conditions, and have implications for guiding health and TANF-related policy.

  12. 2011 and 2012 Early Careers Achievement Awards: improving the production, environmental, and economic efficiency of the stocker cattle industry in the southeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Beck, P A; Anders, M; Watkins, B; Gunter, S A; Hubbell, D; Gadberry, M S

    2013-06-01

    Grazing forages on small-grain fields can be a profitable "second crop" for grain producers and an opportunity for cow-calf producers to retain ownership of weaned calves. The increasing costs of conventional tillage and movement of soil nutrients into surface water creates a need for more sustainable production practices to be incorporated by producers into wheat pasture production systems. Research at the Livestock and Forestry Research Station near Batesville, AR, and the Southwest Research and Extension Center near Hope, AR, has been conducted over a 9-yr span to characterize the impacts of pasture systems on forage production, animal performance, soil quality, water runoff, and the economics associated with the stocker cattle enterprises. Gains of growing cattle grazing nontoxic endophyte-infected tall fescue and small-grain forages can be increased by 80 and 150%, respectively, compared with grazing Bermuda grass or toxic endophyte-infected tall fescue. Producers grazing spring-calving cowherds can use these improved forages to accelerate stocker performance when retaining calves in the fall and improve net returns by 99% with winter annual or nontoxic tall fescue production systems compared with Bermuda grass or toxic tall fescue. Rainfall simulation of small grain pastures indicates that runoff volume and nutrient load does not differ between conventionally tilled fields and no-till fields in the spring before tillage when soil surface cover is similar. In the fall after tillage, however, conventionally tilled fields had 4 times greater runoff; hence, there was 1.9 times greater N runoff and 3.2 times greater P runoff in conventionally tilled fields compared with no-till. Total natural rainfall runoff from conventionally tilled wheat fields were 2 times greater than from no-till fields with 25 mm rainfall events yet were 4 times greater with 62-mm rainfall events. Soil analysis shows that soil aggregate content was greater in no-till compared with

  13. Improving Access to Preschool and Postsecondary Education. Hearings before the Subcommittee on Education and Health of the Joint Economic Committee. Congress of the United States, One Hundredth Congress, Second Session (December 14-15, 1988).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Joint Economic Committee, Washington, DC.

    Joint hearings on the process of improving access to preschool and postsecondary education in the United States were convened to examine the economic significance of improved access to the nation. James H. Scheuer presided. These 2 days of hearings were the last of 11 days; information given on the previous days, which focused on what the country…

  14. Economic analysis

    SciTech Connect

    1980-06-01

    The Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) mandated that minimum energy efficiency standards be established for classes of refrigerators and refrigerator-freezers, freezers, clothes dryers, water heaters, room air conditioners, home heating equipment, kitchen ranges and ovens, central air conditioners, and furnaces. EPCA requires that standards be designed to achieve the maximum improvement in energy efficiency that is technologically feasible and economically justified. Following the introductory chapter, Chapter Two describes the methodology used in the economic analysis and its relationship to legislative criteria for consumer product efficiency assessment; details how the CPES Value Model systematically compared and evaluated the economic impacts of regulation on the consumer, manufacturer and Nation. Chapter Three briefly displays the results of the analysis and lists the proposed performance standards by product class. Chapter Four describes the reasons for developing a baseline forecast, characterizes the baseline scenario from which regulatory impacts were calculated and summarizes the primary models, data sources and assumptions used in the baseline formulations. Chapter Five summarizes the methodology used to calculate regulatory impacts; describes the impacts of energy performance standards relative to the baseline discussed in Chapter Four. Also discussed are regional standards and other program alternatives to performance standards. Chapter Six describes the procedure for balancing consumer, manufacturer, and national impacts to select standard levels. Details of models and data bases used in the analysis are included in Appendices A through K.

  15. The Economics of Publishing and the Publishing of Economics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    La Manna, Manfredi

    2003-01-01

    Explores the relationship between economics and scientific journal publishing. Topics include journal pricing in economics; market power exerted by the dominant commercial publisher in economics journal publishing; academic experiments to improve scholarly communication in economics; policies of the United Kingdom Competition Commission; and…

  16. Rethinking Diversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gordon, Jack

    1992-01-01

    Managing diversity is about coping with unassimilated differences, about building systems and a culture that unite different people in a common pursuit without undermining their diversity. The goal of diversity training is a high performance organization rather than a climate in which no one's feathers are ruffled. (SK)

  17. Metro Nature, Environmental Health, and Economic Value

    PubMed Central

    Robbins, Alicia S.T.

    2015-01-01

    Background Nearly 40 years of research provides an extensive body of evidence about human health, well-being, and improved function benefits associated with experiences of nearby nature in cities. Objectives We demonstrate the numerous opportunities for future research efforts that link metro nature, human health and well-being outcomes, and economic values. Methods We reviewed the literature on urban nature-based health and well-being benefits. In this review, we provide a classification schematic and propose potential economic values associated with metro nature services. Discussion Economic valuation of benefits derived from urban green systems has largely been undertaken in the fields of environmental and natural resource economics, but studies have not typically addressed health outcomes. Urban trees, parks, gardens, open spaces, and other nearby nature elements—collectively termed metro nature—generate many positive externalities that have been largely overlooked in urban economics and policy. Here, we present a range of health benefits, including benefit context and beneficiaries. Although the understanding of these benefits is not yet consistently expressed, and although it is likely that attempts to link urban ecosystem services and economic values will not include all expressions of cultural or social value, the development of new interdisciplinary approaches that integrate environmental health and economic disciplines are greatly needed. Conclusions Metro nature provides diverse and substantial benefits to human populations in cities. In this review, we begin to address the need for development of valuation methodologies and new approaches to understanding the potential economic outcomes of these benefits. Citation Wolf KL, Robbins AS. 2015. Metro nature, environmental health, and economic value. Environ Health Perspect 123:390–398; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1408216 PMID:25626137

  18. Culturally and linguistically diverse peoples' knowledge of accessibility and utilisation of health services: exploring the need for improvement in health service delivery.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Saras; Kendall, Elizabeth

    2011-01-01

    With 28% of Australia's population having a culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) background, the health system faces an increasing challenge to provide accessible and culturally competent health care. The view that all CALD communities are homogenous and solutions can be developed for the entire nation is detrimental. Despite available health services, CALD communities are reluctant to use them due to cultural differences, perceived racism and misunderstandings leading to the existing health disparities. Therefore, gathering data from four prominent CALD communities, such as the Sudanese, Afghani, Pacific Islander and Burmese communities in Logan, Queensland, about how they perceive and use health services can provide insightful information towards development of a service model that will better suit these CALD communities. The objective of the study was to examine the extent to which four prominent CALD communities (Sudanese, Afghani, Pacific Islander and Burmese) access and use health services in Logan, Queensland. Six focus group interviews using interpreters were conducted in English with Sudanese, Afghani, Pacific Islander and Burmese people. The results indicated that even long-standing CALD communities, such as the Pacific Islander people, were unfamiliar with health services and experienced difficulties accessing appropriate health care. Most wanted doctors to use traditional healing methods alongside orthodox medicine, but did not feel respected for their beliefs. Language difficulties impeded communication with health professionals who were hindered by ineffective use of interpreters. In conclusion, a clear role for bilingual community-based navigators was identified by CALD participants to address concerns about the health system, and to improve accessibility and health service usage.

  19. A Polarization-Diversity Homodyne Image-Reject Optical Tranceiver Architecture for Improved Range and Signal Detection in Coherent Doppler Lidars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abari, C. F.; Chu, X.; Mann, J.

    2014-12-01

    Doppler light detection and ranging (lidar) has been used for a few decades for the characterization of wind fields and turbulence structures in the atmosphere. More recently, due to the advances in fiber optic communications, all-fiber coherent Doppler lidars (CDL) have been developed and widely used as a primary instrument for probing the atmospheric boundary layer wind fields. Due to a variety of reasons, all-fiber CDLs have gradually replaced their counterparts benefiting from technologies other than fiber optics. Most CDLs suffer from a number of drawbacks inherent to their principle of operation. For instance, one of the main challenges in CDLs is extracting the signal information from noisy observations, which is common to most opto-electronic systems. Moreover, it is sometimes challenging to extract the sign of the measured radial velocity. Conventionally, CDLs have benefitted from an intermediate frequency (IF) heterodyne receiver architecture for the determination of the radial velocity. In such systems, either the transmitted or the local oscillator (LO) signal is shifted in frequency. Such architectures may suffer from increased noise and spurious effects due to the employment of additional active components, e.g., acousto-optic modulator (AOM), limited measurement bandwidth (BW), and a more sophisticated electronic front-end for signal detection. On the other hand, one of the main challenges in long-range (pulsed) CDLs is the limitations imposed on the pulse repetition rate (PRR) as well as the available transmit power. These restrictions are more significant in all-fiber pulsed CDLs in which Erbium doped fiber amplifiers (EDFA) are employed for the amplification of the optical pulses. In this study, we propose an alternative reconfigurable opto-electronic front-end transceiver architecture in all-fiber CDLs where there is no compromise in the detection BW. Additionally, by benefiting from a polarization diversity architecture we show that both the PRR

  20. Behavioral economics.

    PubMed

    Camerer, Colin F

    2014-09-22

    Behavioral economics uses evidence from psychology and other social sciences to create a precise and fruitful alternative to traditional economic theories, which are based on optimization. Behavioral economics may interest some biologists, as it shifts the basis for theories of economic choice away from logical calculation and maximization and toward biologically plausible mechanisms.

  1. Improvement of anaerobic digestion of sewage sludge in a wastewater treatment plant by means of mechanical and thermal pre-treatments: Performance, energy and economical assessment.

    PubMed

    Ruffino, Barbara; Campo, Giuseppe; Genon, Giuseppe; Lorenzi, Eugenio; Novarino, Daniel; Scibilia, Gerardo; Zanetti, Mariachiara

    2015-01-01

    Performances of mechanical and low-temperature (<100°C) thermal pre-treatments were investigated to improve the present efficiency of anaerobic digestion (AD) carried out on waste activated sludge (WAS) in the largest Italian wastewater treatment plant (2,300,000p.e.). Thermal pre-treatments returned disintegration rates of one order of magnitude higher than mechanical ones (about 25% vs. 1.5%). The methane specific production increased by 21% and 31%, with respect to untreated samples, for treatment conditions of respectively 70 and 90°C, 3h. Thermal pre-treatments also decreased WAS viscosity. Preliminary energy and economic assessments demonstrated that a WAS final total solid content of 5% was enough to avoid the employment of auxiliary methane for the pre-treatment at 90°C and the subsequent AD process, provided that all the heat generated was transferred to WAS through heat exchangers. Moreover, the total revenues from sale of the electricity produced from biogas increased by 10% with respect to the present scenario. PMID:25459836

  2. Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.)/maize (Zea mays L.) intercropping provides a feasible way to improve yield and economic incomes in farming and pastoral areas of northeast China.

    PubMed

    Sun, Baoru; Peng, Yi; Yang, Hongyu; Li, Zhijian; Gao, Yingzhi; Wang, Chao; Yan, Yuli; Liu, Yanmei

    2014-01-01

    Given the growing challenges to food and eco-environmental security as well as sustainable development of animal husbandry in the farming and pastoral areas of northeast China, it is crucial to identify advantageous intercropping modes and some constraints limiting its popularization. In order to assess the performance of various intercropping modes of maize and alfalfa, a field experiment was conducted in a completely randomized block design with five treatments: maize monoculture in even rows, maize monoculture in alternating wide and narrow rows, alfalfa monoculture, maize intercropped with one row of alfalfa in wide rows and maize intercropped with two rows of alfalfa in wide rows. Results demonstrate that maize monoculture in alternating wide and narrow rows performed best for light transmission, grain yield and output value, compared to in even rows. When intercropped, maize intercropped with one row of alfalfa in wide rows was identified as the optimal strategy and the largely complementary ecological niches of alfalfa and maize were shown to account for the intercropping advantages, optimizing resource utilization and improving yield and economic incomes. These findings suggest that alfalfa/maize intercropping has obvious advantages over monoculture and is applicable to the farming and pastoral areas of northeast China.

  3. Current Status and Future Trends of Diversity Initiatives in the Workplace: Diversity Experts' Perspective.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wentling, Rose Mary; Palma-Rivas, Nilda

    1998-01-01

    In-depth interviews with 12 diversity experts identified organizational and individual barriers inhibiting development of a diverse workforce. Primary reasons for diversity initiatives included improving productivity, enhancing social responsibility, and addressing legal concerns. (SK)

  4. U.S. Economic Growth.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Landau, Ralph

    1988-01-01

    Discusses the enhancement of economic leadership by improving workers' skills, supporting research and development and encouraging investment that applies to technological innovations. Suggests a relationship between national rates of capital investment and increases in productivity and economic growth. (RT)

  5. Assessment of genetic diversity in rice [Oryza sativa L.] germplasm based on agro-morphology traits and zinc-iron content for crop improvement.

    PubMed

    Roy, Subhas Chandra; Sharma, B D

    2014-04-01

    . Highest iron containing rice was Swetonunia with 34.8 μg/g and highest amount of Zn was found in Nepali Kalam which was 195.3 μg/g. Anaerobic germination (AG) was observed in 18 cultivars among 84 land races (viz. Jungli, Kumrogore, Dudheshwar, Rambhog and Tulsi etc.), the trait is highly desired by the rice breeder for the introgression of this gene (QTL) to the HYV for direct seeding in the field for saving labour cost and reduced maturity time. Dendrogram showed genetic diversity among 84 landraces by grouping them into five major clusters. All the descriptors evaluated in this study have showed that there is enough genetic diversity among landraces and this information can be helpful to the breeders to choose the right parent for crop improvement. PMID:24757325

  6. Production diversity and dietary diversity in smallholder farm households.

    PubMed

    Sibhatu, Kibrom T; Krishna, Vijesh V; Qaim, Matin

    2015-08-25

    Undernutrition and micronutrient malnutrition remain problems of significant magnitude in large parts of the developing world. Improved nutrition requires not only better access to food for poor population segments, but also higher dietary quality and diversity. Because many of the poor and undernourished people are smallholder farmers, diversifying production on these smallholder farms is widely perceived as a useful approach to improve dietary diversity. However, empirical evidence on the link between production and consumption diversity is scarce. Here, this issue is addressed with household-level data from Indonesia, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Malawi. Regression models show that on-farm production diversity is positively associated with dietary diversity in some situations, but not in all. When production diversity is already high, the association is not significant or even turns negative, because of foregone income benefits from specialization. Analysis of other factors reveals that market access has positive effects on dietary diversity, which are larger than those of increased production diversity. Market transactions also tend to reduce the role of farm diversity for household nutrition. These results suggest that increasing on-farm diversity is not always the most effective way to improve dietary diversity in smallholder households and should not be considered a goal in itself. Additional research is needed to better understand how agriculture and food systems can be made more nutrition-sensitive in particular situations. PMID:26261342

  7. Production diversity and dietary diversity in smallholder farm households

    PubMed Central

    Sibhatu, Kibrom T.; Krishna, Vijesh V.; Qaim, Matin

    2015-01-01

    Undernutrition and micronutrient malnutrition remain problems of significant magnitude in large parts of the developing world. Improved nutrition requires not only better access to food for poor population segments, but also higher dietary quality and diversity. Because many of the poor and undernourished people are smallholder farmers, diversifying production on these smallholder farms is widely perceived as a useful approach to improve dietary diversity. However, empirical evidence on the link between production and consumption diversity is scarce. Here, this issue is addressed with household-level data from Indonesia, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Malawi. Regression models show that on-farm production diversity is positively associated with dietary diversity in some situations, but not in all. When production diversity is already high, the association is not significant or even turns negative, because of foregone income benefits from specialization. Analysis of other factors reveals that market access has positive effects on dietary diversity, which are larger than those of increased production diversity. Market transactions also tend to reduce the role of farm diversity for household nutrition. These results suggest that increasing on-farm diversity is not always the most effective way to improve dietary diversity in smallholder households and should not be considered a goal in itself. Additional research is needed to better understand how agriculture and food systems can be made more nutrition-sensitive in particular situations. PMID:26261342

  8. Production diversity and dietary diversity in smallholder farm households.

    PubMed

    Sibhatu, Kibrom T; Krishna, Vijesh V; Qaim, Matin

    2015-08-25

    Undernutrition and micronutrient malnutrition remain problems of significant magnitude in large parts of the developing world. Improved nutrition requires not only better access to food for poor population segments, but also higher dietary quality and diversity. Because many of the poor and undernourished people are smallholder farmers, diversifying production on these smallholder farms is widely perceived as a useful approach to improve dietary diversity. However, empirical evidence on the link between production and consumption diversity is scarce. Here, this issue is addressed with household-level data from Indonesia, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Malawi. Regression models show that on-farm production diversity is positively associated with dietary diversity in some situations, but not in all. When production diversity is already high, the association is not significant or even turns negative, because of foregone income benefits from specialization. Analysis of other factors reveals that market access has positive effects on dietary diversity, which are larger than those of increased production diversity. Market transactions also tend to reduce the role of farm diversity for household nutrition. These results suggest that increasing on-farm diversity is not always the most effective way to improve dietary diversity in smallholder households and should not be considered a goal in itself. Additional research is needed to better understand how agriculture and food systems can be made more nutrition-sensitive in particular situations.

  9. APPLICATION OF RESERVOIR CHARACTERIZATION AND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE RECOVERY AND ECONOMICS IN A LOWER QUALITY SHALLOW SHELF SAN ANDRES RESERVOIR

    SciTech Connect

    Tom Beebe

    2003-05-05

    The OXY-operated Class 2 Project at West Welch is designed to demonstrate how the use of advanced technology can improve the economics of miscible CO{sub 2} injection projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate reservoirs. The research and design phase (Budget Period 1) primarily involved advanced reservoir characterization. The current demonstration phase (Budget Period 2) is the implementation of the reservoir management plan for an optimum miscible CO{sub 2} flood design based on the reservoir characterization. Although Budget Period 1 for the Project officially ended 12/31/96, reservoir characterization and simulation work continued during the Budget Period 2. During the seventh annual reporting period (8/3/00-8/2/01) covered by this report, work continued on interpretation of the interwell seismic data to create porosity and permeability profiles which were distributed into the reservoir geostatistically. The initial interwell seismic CO{sub 2} monitor survey was conducted and the acquired data processed and interpretation started. Only limited well work and facility construction were conducted in the project area. The CO{sub 2} injection initiated in October 1997 was continued, although the operator had to modify the operating plan in response to low injection rates, well performance and changes in CO{sub 2} supply. CO{sub 2} injection was focused in a smaller area to increase the reservoir processing rate. By the end of the reporting period three producers had shown sustained oil rate increases and six wells had experienced gas (CO{sub 2}) breakthrough.

  10. APPLICATION OF RESERVOIR CHARACTERIZATION AND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE RECOVERY AND ECONOMICS IN A LOWER QUALITY SHALLOW SHELF SAN ANDRES RESERVOIR

    SciTech Connect

    T. Scott Hickman; James J. Justice

    2002-01-09

    The OXY-operated Class 2 Project at West Welch is designed to demonstrate how the use of advanced technology can improve the economics of miscible CO{sub 2} injection projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate reservoirs. The research and design phase (Budget Period 1) primarily involved advanced reservoir characterization. The current demonstration phase (Budget Period 2) is the implementation of the reservoir management plan for an optimum miscible CO{sub 2} flood design based on the reservoir characterization. Although Budget Period 1 for the Project officially ended 12/31/96, reservoir characterization and simulation work continued during the Budget Period 2. During the fifth and sixth annual reporting periods (8/3/98-8/2/00) covered by this report, work continued on interpretation of the cross well seismic data to create porosity and permeability profiles which were distributed into the reservoir geostatistically. The initial interwell seismic CO{sub 2} monitor survey was conducted, the acquired data processed and interpretation started. Only limited well work and facility construction was conducted in the project area. The CO{sub 2} injection initiated in October 1997 was continued, although the operator had to modify the operating plan in response to low injection rates, well performance and changes in CO{sub 2} supply. CO{sub 2} injection was focused in a smaller area to increase the reservoir processing rate. By the end of the reporting period three producers had shown sustained oil rate increases and ten wells had experienced gas (CO{sub 2}) breakthrough.

  11. Sustainable energy, economic growth and public health.

    PubMed

    Haines, A

    2001-01-01

    Dramatic economic growth over the last 50 years has been accompanied by widening inequalities world-wide in wealth and energy consumption, diminished life expectancy in some countries, and deteriorating indices of environmental sustainability including loss of bio-diversity. Raised output of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases due to increased economic and industrial activity is causing progressive climate change, leading in turn to direct and indirect adverse effects on health. Emissions of greenhouse gases can be lowered by increased use of renewable energy sources, for example, wind power in the United Kingdom (UK), greater energy efficiency and other measures to promote sustainability. The experience of some developing countries shows that favourable indicators of health and development can accompany a low output of greenhouse gases. It is unclear whether contemporary political and social systems can deliver improved human development without increased use of fossil fuels and other resources.

  12. Economic uncertainty and econophysics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schinckus, Christophe

    2009-10-01

    The objective of this paper is to provide a methodological link between econophysics and economics. I will study a key notion of both fields: uncertainty and the ways of thinking about it developed by the two disciplines. After having presented the main economic theories of uncertainty (provided by Knight, Keynes and Hayek), I show how this notion is paradoxically excluded from the economic field. In economics, uncertainty is totally reduced by an a priori Gaussian framework-in contrast to econophysics, which does not use a priori models because it works directly on data. Uncertainty is then not shaped by a specific model, and is partially and temporally reduced as models improve. This way of thinking about uncertainty has echoes in the economic literature. By presenting econophysics as a Knightian method, and a complementary approach to a Hayekian framework, this paper shows that econophysics can be methodologically justified from an economic point of view.

  13. Massage therapy improves the development of HIV-exposed infants living in a low socio-economic, peri-urban community of South Africa.

    PubMed

    Perez, E M; Carrara, H; Bourne, L; Berg, A; Swanevelder, S; Hendricks, M K

    2015-02-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the effect of massage therapy on the growth and development of infants of HIV-infected mothers in a low socio-economic community in Cape Town. It was a prospective, randomised, controlled intervention trial that included massage therapy and control groups of HIV-infected mothers and their normal birth weight infants who were enrolled in the prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) programme. Participants were recruited at the 6-week clinic visit and followed up every 2 weeks until their infants were 9 months of age. Mother-infant pairs in the massage therapy and control groups included 73 and 88 at 6 weeks and 55 and 58 at 9 months, respectively. Mothers in the intervention group were trained to massage their infants for 15 min daily. The socioeconomic status, immunity, relationship with the partner and mental pain of mothers; the infants' dietary intake, anthropometry and development (Griffiths Mental Development Scales); and haematological and iron status of mothers and infants were assessed at baseline and follow-up. Nine infants (5.3%) were HIV-infected on the HIV DNA PCR test at 6 weeks. Despite significantly higher levels of maternal mental pain, infants in the massage therapy compared to control group scored higher in all five of the Griffiths Scales of Mental Development and significantly higher in the mean quotient (p=0.002) and mean percentile (p=0.004) for the hearing and speech scale at 9 months. Based on the mean difference in scores, the massage therapy group showed greater improvement for all five scales compared to the control group. The mean difference in scores was significantly greater for the hearing and speech quotient (21.9 vs. 11.2) (p<0.03) and the general quotient percentile (19.3 vs. 7.7) (p=0.03) in the massage therapy compared to the control group. These scales remained significant when adjusting for the relationship with the partner and maternal mental pain. Both groups had lower scores in

  14. Research Priorities for Economic Analyses of Prevention: Current Issues & Future Directions

    PubMed Central

    Crowley, D. Max; Hill, Laura Griner; Kuklinski, Margaret R.; Jones, Damon E.

    2013-01-01

    In response to growing interest in economic analyses of prevention efforts, a diverse group of prevention researchers, economists, and policy analysts convened a scientific panel, on “Research Priorities in Economic Analysis of Prevention” at the 19th annual conference of the Society for Prevention Research. The panel articulated four priorities that, if followed in future research, would make economic analyses of prevention efforts easier to compare and more relevant to policymakers, and community stakeholders. These priorities are: (1) increased standardization of evaluation methods, (2) improved economic valuation of common prevention outcomes, (3) expanded efforts to maximize evaluation generalizability and impact, as well as (4) enhanced transparency and communicability of economic evaluations. In this paper we define three types of economic analyses in prevention, provide context and rationale for these four priorities as well as related sub-priorities, and discuss the challenges inherent in meeting them. PMID:23963624

  15. Increasing diversity in radiologic technology.

    PubMed

    Carwile, Laura

    2003-01-01

    Diversity is increasingly important in the radiologic technology workplace. For significant changes to occur in work force diversity, educators must first recruit and retain students from a wide variety of backgrounds. This article examines personality, race and gender as factors affecting career choice and how educators can use these factors to increase diversity in their programs. An overview of the ASRT's efforts to improve diversity within the profession is presented, along with suggestions for developing effective recruitment and retention plans to increase diversity. PMID:14671827

  16. Beyond Looking: Using Data to Coach for Instructional Improvement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martin, Michael; Taylor, Katherine

    2009-01-01

    As a team of job-embedded instructional coaches in an ethnically and economically diverse learning environment, the authors are dedicated to thinking through and troubleshooting the improvement of teaching and learning in the three learning communities that make up Clover Park High School. They agree with commentator Laurie Olsen who writes, "Data…

  17. Stimulating Economics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Banaian, King

    2009-01-01

    With the current economic slump possibly the deepest since the Great Depression, interest in the subject of macroeconomics has reignited, and the number of students majoring in economics has increased during the last two years. While this would appear to be good news for educators in the economics field, the profession is nervous about more than…

  18. Television Economics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Owen, Bruce M.; And Others

    Intended as an introduction to the economics of commercial television for the general reader, this volume considers the theory and analytical basis of television and the policy implications of those economics. Part I considers the economics of television markets with particular attention of the determinants of viewer markets; the supply of…

  19. Theme: Supporting Professional Diversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moore, Eddie A.; And Others

    1994-01-01

    Includes "Supporting Diversity" (Moore); "Reflections on the Need for Diversity" (Bowen); "Understanding Impediments to Diversity in Agricultural Education" (Whent); "Mentoring Diverse Populations" (Jones); "Supporting Diversity: An Unfinished Agenda" (Moore); "Professorial Roles in Supporting Diversity in Teaching, Research, and University…

  20. Energy and Economics. [Revised Edition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walstad, William; Gleason, Joyce

    This unit is designed to provide high school students with an introduction to topics of energy and economics. A basic premise of the unit is that energy issues and economics are interrelated. It is believed that the application of basic economic concepts to energy issues can provide students with the tools to improve their analysis of problems and…

  1. Network Diversity and Affect Dynamics: The Role of Personality Traits

    PubMed Central

    Alshamsi, Aamena; Pianesi, Fabio; Lepri, Bruno; Pentland, Alex; Rahwan, Iyad

    2016-01-01

    People divide their time unequally among their social contacts due to time constraints and varying strength of relationships. It was found that high diversity of social communication, dividing time more evenly among social contacts, is correlated with economic well-being both at macro and micro levels. Besides economic well-being, it is not clear how the diversity of social communication is also associated with the two components of individuals’ subjective well-being, positive and negative affect. Specifically, positive affect and negative affect are two independent dimensions representing the experience (feeling) of emotions. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between the daily diversity of social communication and dynamic affect states that people experience in their daily lives. We collected two high-resolution datasets that capture affect scores via daily experience sampling surveys and social interaction through wearable sensing technologies: sociometric badges for face-to-face interaction and smart phones for mobile phone calls. We found that communication diversity correlates with desirable affect states–e.g. an increase in the positive affect state or a decrease in the negative affect state–for some personality types, but correlates with undesirable affect states for others. For example, diversity in phone calls is experienced as good by introverts, but bad by extroverts; diversity in face-to-face interaction is experienced as good by people who tend to be positive by nature (trait) but bad for people who tend to be not positive by nature. More broadly, the moderating effect of personality type on the relationship between diversity and affect was detected without any knowledge of the type of social tie or the content of communication. This provides further support for the power of unobtrusive sensing in understanding social dynamics, and in measuring the effect of potential interventions designed to improve well-being. PMID:27035904

  2. Network Diversity and Affect Dynamics: The Role of Personality Traits.

    PubMed

    Alshamsi, Aamena; Pianesi, Fabio; Lepri, Bruno; Pentland, Alex; Rahwan, Iyad

    2016-01-01

    People divide their time unequally among their social contacts due to time constraints and varying strength of relationships. It was found that high diversity of social communication, dividing time more evenly among social contacts, is correlated with economic well-being both at macro and micro levels. Besides economic well-being, it is not clear how the diversity of social communication is also associated with the two components of individuals' subjective well-being, positive and negative affect. Specifically, positive affect and negative affect are two independent dimensions representing the experience (feeling) of emotions. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between the daily diversity of social communication and dynamic affect states that people experience in their daily lives. We collected two high-resolution datasets that capture affect scores via daily experience sampling surveys and social interaction through wearable sensing technologies: sociometric badges for face-to-face interaction and smart phones for mobile phone calls. We found that communication diversity correlates with desirable affect states--e.g. an increase in the positive affect state or a decrease in the negative affect state--for some personality types, but correlates with undesirable affect states for others. For example, diversity in phone calls is experienced as good by introverts, but bad by extroverts; diversity in face-to-face interaction is experienced as good by people who tend to be positive by nature (trait) but bad for people who tend to be not positive by nature. More broadly, the moderating effect of personality type on the relationship between diversity and affect was detected without any knowledge of the type of social tie or the content of communication. This provides further support for the power of unobtrusive sensing in understanding social dynamics, and in measuring the effect of potential interventions designed to improve well-being.

  3. Network Diversity and Affect Dynamics: The Role of Personality Traits.

    PubMed

    Alshamsi, Aamena; Pianesi, Fabio; Lepri, Bruno; Pentland, Alex; Rahwan, Iyad

    2016-01-01

    People divide their time unequally among their social contacts due to time constraints and varying strength of relationships. It was found that high diversity of social communication, dividing time more evenly among social contacts, is correlated with economic well-being both at macro and micro levels. Besides economic well-being, it is not clear how the diversity of social communication is also associated with the two components of individuals' subjective well-being, positive and negative affect. Specifically, positive affect and negative affect are two independent dimensions representing the experience (feeling) of emotions. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between the daily diversity of social communication and dynamic affect states that people experience in their daily lives. We collected two high-resolution datasets that capture affect scores via daily experience sampling surveys and social interaction through wearable sensing technologies: sociometric badges for face-to-face interaction and smart phones for mobile phone calls. We found that communication diversity correlates with desirable affect states--e.g. an increase in the positive affect state or a decrease in the negative affect state--for some personality types, but correlates with undesirable affect states for others. For example, diversity in phone calls is experienced as good by introverts, but bad by extroverts; diversity in face-to-face interaction is experienced as good by people who tend to be positive by nature (trait) but bad for people who tend to be not positive by nature. More broadly, the moderating effect of personality type on the relationship between diversity and affect was detected without any knowledge of the type of social tie or the content of communication. This provides further support for the power of unobtrusive sensing in understanding social dynamics, and in measuring the effect of potential interventions designed to improve well-being. PMID:27035904

  4. Respect for Diversity: An International Overview. Working Papers in Early Childhood Development, No. 40

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mac Naughton, Glenda M.

    2006-01-01

    This paper provides an overview on ways of thinking about young children's respect for diversity. It maps sources of knowledge about four different sorts of diversity in young children's lives: cultural and racial diversity, developmental diversity (including "special needs'), gender diversity and socio-economic diversity. It sketches this…

  5. Group Formation in Economics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demange, Gabrielle; Wooders, Myrna

    2005-01-01

    Broad and diverse ranges of activities are conducted within and by organized groups of individuals, including political, economic and social activities. These activities have recently become a subject of intense interest in economics and game theory. Some of the topics investigated in this collection are models of networks of power and privilege, trade networks, co-authorship networks, buyer-seller networks with differentiated products, and networks of medical innovation and the adaptation of new information. Other topics are social norms on punctuality, clubs and the provision of club goods and public goods, research and development and collusive alliances among corporations, and international alliances and trading agreements. While relatively recent, the literature on game theoretic studies of group formation in economics is already vast. This volume provides an introduction to this important literature on game-theoretic treatments of situations with networks, clubs, and coalitions, including some applications.

  6. Improved Socio-Economic Status of a Community Population Following Schistosomiasis and Intestinal Worm Control Interventions on Kome Island, North-Western Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Mwanga, Joseph R; Kaatano, Godfrey M; Siza, Julius E; Chang, Su Young; Ko, Yunsuk; Kullaya, Cyril M; Nsabo, Jackson; Eom, Keeseon S; Yong, Tai-Soon; Chai, Jong-Yil; Min, Duk-Young; Rim, Han-Jong; Changalucha, John M

    2015-10-01

    Research on micro-level assessment of the changes of socio-economic status following health interventions is very scarce. The use of household asset data to determine wealth indices is a common procedure for estimating socio-economic position in resource poor settings. In such settings information about income is usually lacking, and the collection of individual consumption or expenditure data would require in-depth interviews, posing a considerable risk of bias. In this study, we determined the socio-economic status of 213 households in a community population in an island in the north-western Tanzania before and 3 year after implementation of a participatory hygiene and sanitation transformation (PHAST) intervention to control schistosomiasis and intestinal worm infections. We constructed a household 'wealth index' based housing construction features (e.g., type of roof, walls, and floor) and durable assets ownership (e.g., bicycle, radio, etc.). We employed principal components analysis and classified households into wealth quintiles. The study revealed that asset variables with positive factor scores were associated with higher socio-economic status, whereas asset variables with negative factor scores were associated with lower socio-economic status. Overall, households which were rated as the poorest and very poor were on the decrease, whereas those rated as poor, less poor, and the least poor were on the increase after PHAST intervention. This decrease/increase was significant. The median shifted from -0.4376677 to 0.5001073, and the mean from -0.2605787 (SD; 2.005688) to 0.2605787 (SD; 1.831199). The difference in socio-economic status of the people between the 2 phases was highly statistically significant (P<0.001). We argue that finding of this study should be treated with caution as there were other interventions to control schistosomiasis and intestinal worm infections which were running concurrently on Kome Island apart from PHAST intervention. PMID

  7. Improved Socio-Economic Status of a Community Population Following Schistosomiasis and Intestinal Worm Control Interventions on Kome Island, North-Western Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Mwanga, Joseph R; Kaatano, Godfrey M; Siza, Julius E; Chang, Su Young; Ko, Yunsuk; Kullaya, Cyril M; Nsabo, Jackson; Eom, Keeseon S; Yong, Tai-Soon; Chai, Jong-Yil; Min, Duk-Young; Rim, Han-Jong; Changalucha, John M

    2015-10-01

    Research on micro-level assessment of the changes of socio-economic status following health interventions is very scarce. The use of household asset data to determine wealth indices is a common procedure for estimating socio-economic position in resource poor settings. In such settings information about income is usually lacking, and the collection of individual consumption or expenditure data would require in-depth interviews, posing a considerable risk of bias. In this study, we determined the socio-economic status of 213 households in a community population in an island in the north-western Tanzania before and 3 year after implementation of a participatory hygiene and sanitation transformation (PHAST) intervention to control schistosomiasis and intestinal worm infections. We constructed a household 'wealth index' based housing construction features (e.g., type of roof, walls, and floor) and durable assets ownership (e.g., bicycle, radio, etc.). We employed principal components analysis and classified households into wealth quintiles. The study revealed that asset variables with positive factor scores were associated with higher socio-economic status, whereas asset variables with negative factor scores were associated with lower socio-economic status. Overall, households which were rated as the poorest and very poor were on the decrease, whereas those rated as poor, less poor, and the least poor were on the increase after PHAST intervention. This decrease/increase was significant. The median shifted from -0.4376677 to 0.5001073, and the mean from -0.2605787 (SD; 2.005688) to 0.2605787 (SD; 1.831199). The difference in socio-economic status of the people between the 2 phases was highly statistically significant (P<0.001). We argue that finding of this study should be treated with caution as there were other interventions to control schistosomiasis and intestinal worm infections which were running concurrently on Kome Island apart from PHAST intervention.

  8. Behavioral Economics

    PubMed Central

    Reed, Derek D.; Niileksela, Christopher R.; Kaplan, Brent A.

    2013-01-01

    In recent years, behavioral economics has gained much attention in psychology and public policy. Despite increased interest and continued basic experimental studies, the application of behavioral economics to therapeutic settings remains relatively sparse. Using examples from both basic and applied studies, we provide an overview of the principles comprising behavioral economic perspectives and discuss implications for behavior analysts in practice. A call for further translational research is provided. PMID:25729506

  9. Improved Resolution of Reef-Coral Endosymbiont (Symbiodinium) Species Diversity, Ecology, and Evolution through psbA Non-Coding Region Genotyping

    PubMed Central

    LaJeunesse, Todd C.; Thornhill, Daniel J.

    2011-01-01

    Ribosomal DNA sequence data abounds from numerous studies on the dinoflagellate endosymbionts of corals, and yet the multi-copy nature and intragenomic variability of rRNA genes and spacers confound interpretations of symbiont diversity and ecology. Making consistent sense of extensive sequence variation in a meaningful ecological and evolutionary context would benefit from the application of additional genetic markers. Sequences of the non-coding region of the plastid psbA minicircle (psbAncr) were used to independently examine symbiont genotypic and species diversity found within and between colonies of Hawaiian reef corals in the genus Montipora. A single psbAncr haplotype was recovered in most samples through direct sequencing (∼80–90%) and members of the same internal transcribed spacer region 2 (ITS2) type were phylogenetically differentiated from other ITS2 types by substantial psbAncr sequence divergence. The repeated sequencing of bacterially-cloned fragments of psbAncr from samples and clonal cultures often recovered a single numerically common haplotype accompanied by rare, highly-similar, sequence variants. When sequence artifacts of cloning and intragenomic variation are factored out, these data indicate that most colonies harbored one dominant Symbiodinium genotype. The cloning and sequencing of ITS2 DNA amplified from these same samples recovered numerically abundant variants (that are diagnostic of distinct Symbiodinium lineages), but also generated a large amount of sequences comprising PCR/cloning artifacts combined with ancestral and/or rare variants that, if incorporated into phylogenetic reconstructions, confound how small sequence differences are interpreted. Finally, psbAncr sequence data from a broad sampling of Symbiodinium diversity obtained from various corals throughout the Indo-Pacific were concordant with ITS lineage membership (defined by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis screening), yet exhibited substantially greater

  10. The Creativity-Diversity Link

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gates, Gary J.

    2004-01-01

    The growing dominance of the creative economy challenges cities and regions to move beyond the impulse toward "big ticket" economic development strategies like stadiums and convention centres and consider increased support for community-level strategies that encourage social and cultural diversity. Vibrant street scenes, eclectic restaurants and…

  11. SEASAT economic assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hicks, K.; Steele, W.

    1974-01-01

    The SEASAT program will provide scientific and economic benefits from global remote sensing of the ocean's dynamic and physical characteristics. The program as presently envisioned consists of: (1) SEASAT A; (2) SEASAT B; and (3) Operational SEASAT. This economic assessment was to identify, rationalize, quantify and validate the economic benefits evolving from SEASAT. These benefits will arise from improvements in the operating efficiency of systems that interface with the ocean. SEASAT data will be combined with data from other ocean and atmospheric sampling systems and then processed through analytical models of the interaction between oceans and atmosphere to yield accurate global measurements and global long range forecasts of ocean conditions and weather.

  12. The Economic Benefits of Closing Educational Achievement Gaps: Promoting Growth and Strengthening the Nation by Improving the Educational Outcomes of Children of Color

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lynch, Robert G.; Oakford, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    Our nation is currently experiencing growing levels of income and wealth inequality, which are contributing to longstanding racial and ethnic gaps in education outcomes and other areas. This report quantifies the economic benefits of closing one of the most harmful racial and ethnic gaps: the educational achievement gap that exists between black…

  13. Improved Yield of High Molecular Weight DNA Coincides with Increased Microbial Diversity Access from Iron Oxide Cemented Sub-Surface Clay Environments

    SciTech Connect

    Hurt, Jr., Richard Ashley; Moberly, James G; Shakya, Migun; Vishnivetskaya, T.; Elias, Dwayne A

    2014-01-01

    Despite more than three decades of progress, efficient nucleic acid extraction from microbial communities has remained difficult, particularly from clay environments. Lysis with concentrated guanidine followed by concentrated sodium phosphate extraction supported DNA and RNA recovery from high iron, low humus content clay. Alterating the extraction pH or using other ionic solutions (Na2SO4 and NH4H2PO4) yielded no detectable nucleic acid. DNA recovered using a lysis solution with 500 mM phosphate buffer (PB) followed by a 1 M PB wash was 15.22 2.33 g DNA/g clay, with most DNA consisting of >20 Kb fragments, compared to 2.46 0.25 g DNA/g clay with the Powerlyzer soil DNA system (MoBio). Increasing [PB] in the lysis reagent coincided with increasing DNA fragment length. Rarefaction plots based on16S rRNA (V1/V3 region) pyrosequencing libraries from A-horizon and clay soils showed an ~80% and ~400% larger accessed diversity compared to a previous grinding protocol or the Powerlyzer soil DNA system, respectively. The observed diversity from the Firmicutes showed the strongest increase with >3-fold more bacterial species recovered using this system. Additionally, some OTU s having more than 100 sequences in these libraries were absent in samples extracted using the PowerLyzer reagents or the previous lysis method.

  14. Economic Realities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Alstyne, Carol

    Concerns relating to the economics of higher education, including inflation, are considered. It is suggested that future sources of rising costs are energy, equipment, books, and federal requirements, and that another major economic concern involves trends in enrollments and in tuition revenues. Projections of declining enrollments should be…

  15. Generational diversity.

    PubMed

    Kramer, Linda W

    2010-01-01

    Generational diversity has proven challenges for nurse leaders, and generational values may influence ideas about work and career planning. This article discusses generational gaps, influencing factors and support, and the various generational groups present in today's workplace as well as the consequences of need addressing these issues. The article ends with a discussion of possible solutions.

  16. Generational diversity.

    PubMed

    Kramer, Linda W

    2010-01-01

    Generational diversity has proven challenges for nurse leaders, and generational values may influence ideas about work and career planning. This article discusses generational gaps, influencing factors and support, and the various generational groups present in today's workplace as well as the consequences of need addressing these issues. The article ends with a discussion of possible solutions. PMID:20395729

  17. Diversity Trailblazer

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuart, Reginald

    2012-01-01

    When Dr. Kumea Shorter-Gooden took on her newly created job this month at the University of Maryland's flagship College Park campus, she assumed a challenge at the school with a lot riding on her shoulders--helping the University of Maryland strengthen its diversity efforts and, thus, its relevance to the state in the future and standing among the…

  18. PLANT DIVERSITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Habitat change statistics and species-area curves were used to estimate the effects of alternative future scenarios for agriculture on plant diversity in Iowa farmlands. Study areas were two watersheds in central Iowa of about 50 and 90 square kilometers, respectively. Future s...

  19. Improved resolution of reef-coral endosymbiont (Symbiodinium) species diversity, ecology, and evolution through psbA non-coding region genotyping.

    PubMed

    LaJeunesse, Todd C; Thornhill, Daniel J

    2011-01-01

    Ribosomal DNA sequence data abounds from numerous studies on the dinoflagellate endosymbionts of corals, and yet the multi-copy nature and intragenomic variability of rRNA genes and spacers confound interpretations of symbiont diversity and ecology. Making consistent sense of extensive sequence variation in a meaningful ecological and evolutionary context would benefit from the application of additional genetic markers. Sequences of the non-coding region of the plastid psbA minicircle (psbA(ncr)) were used to independently examine symbiont genotypic and species diversity found within and between colonies of Hawaiian reef corals in the genus Montipora. A single psbA(ncr) haplotype was recovered in most samples through direct sequencing (~80-90%) and members of the same internal transcribed spacer region 2 (ITS2) type were phylogenetically differentiated from other ITS2 types by substantial psbA(ncr) sequence divergence. The repeated sequencing of bacterially-cloned fragments of psbA(ncr) from samples and clonal cultures often recovered a single numerically common haplotype accompanied by rare, highly-similar, sequence variants. When sequence artifacts of cloning and intragenomic variation are factored out, these data indicate that most colonies harbored one dominant Symbiodinium genotype. The cloning and sequencing of ITS2 DNA amplified from these same samples recovered numerically abundant variants (that are diagnostic of distinct Symbiodinium lineages), but also generated a large amount of sequences comprising PCR/cloning artifacts combined with ancestral and/or rare variants that, if incorporated into phylogenetic reconstructions, confound how small sequence differences are interpreted. Finally, psbA(ncr) sequence data from a broad sampling of Symbiodinium diversity obtained from various corals throughout the Indo-Pacific were concordant with ITS lineage membership (defined by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis screening), yet exhibited substantially greater

  20. The Overmathematicization of Economics: Lessons for Business Disciplines.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quddus, Munir; Rashid, Salim

    1993-01-01

    Opposition to excessive use of mathematical techniques in economics is growing. Math dominance reduces the diversity of traditions in economics. When used appropriately, it is a useful, efficient research tool, but it should be balanced with other methodologies. (SK)

  1. ENVIRONMENTAL ACCOUNTING: BALANCING ECONOMIC GROWTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Modern industrial economies depend on the environment to support economic production and a high standard of living. Economic production, in turn, impacts the productivity of ecosystems through waste production and resource use or diversion. Human activities control many energy an...

  2. Educational Options: Democracy, Diversity and Equity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walker, James C.; Crump, Stephen J.

    In Australian educational policy debate, advocacy of choice and diversity has come to be linked to support for educational markets and therefore with educational reform and restructuring associated with "economic rationalism." This paper argues that choice and diversity are better conceived within a framework of democratic educational philosophy…

  3. Defining Diversity: A Primer and a Review.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Capitman, John

    2002-01-01

    Examines tasks for aging policies, programs, and practitioners: (1) meeting needs of elders from diverse groups; (2) managing a diverse elder care work force; and (3) supporting economic achievements of younger people while promoting their sense of solidarity with elders. Discusses the challenges for policy and program development and…

  4. Cultural Diversity: New Directions for Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    King, Lovern Root

    Perspectives concerning cultural diversity and the schools are presented. It is suggested that educational preparation is needed in the United States for the social, political, and economic realities brought about by the growth in both immigration and births among native minority groups. Schools should be aware of students' cultural diversity and…

  5. The importance of socio-economic context for social marketing models for improving reproductive health: Evidence from 555 years of program experience

    PubMed Central

    Meekers, Dominique; Rahaim, Stephen

    2005-01-01

    Background Over the past two decades, social marketing programs have become an important element of the national family planning and HIV prevention strategy in several developing countries. As yet, there has not been any comprehensive empirical assessment to determine which of several social marketing models is most effective for a given socio-economic context. Such an assessment is urgently needed to inform the design of future social marketing programs, and to avoid that programs are designed using an ineffective model. Methods This study addresses this issue using a database of annual statistics about reproductive health oriented social marketing programs in over 70 countries. In total, the database covers 555 years of program experience with social marketing programs that distribute and promote the use of oral contraceptives and condoms. Specifically, our analysis assesses to what extent the model used by different reproductive health social marketing programs has varied across different socio-economic contexts. We then use random effects regression to test in which socio-economic context each of the models is most successful at increasing use of socially marketed oral contraceptives and condoms. Results The results show that there has been a tendency to design reproductive health social marketing program with a management structure that matches the local context. However, the evidence also shows that this has not always been the case. While socio-economic context clearly influences the effectiveness of some of the social marketing models, program maturity and the size of the target population appear equally important. Conclusions To maximize the effectiveness of future social marketing programs, it is essential that more effort is devoted to ensuring that such programs are designed using the model or approach that is most suitable for the local context. PMID:15676068

  6. Ecological economics and economic growth.

    PubMed

    Victor, Peter A

    2010-01-01

    Boulding's 1966 paper on the economics of spaceship Earth established the framework for ecological economics and an understanding of economic growth. In ecological economics, economies are conceptualized as open subsystems of the closed biosphere and are subject to biophysical laws and constraints. Economic growth measured as an increase in real gross domestic product (GDP) has generally been associated with increases in the use of energy and materials and the generation of wastes. Scale, composition, and technology are the proximate determinants of environmental impacts. They are often reduced to two: scale (GDP) and intensity (impact per unit GDP). New work described in this paper defines "green" growth as intensity that declines faster than scale increases. Similarly, "brown" growth occurs when intensity declines more slowly than increases in scale, and "black" growth happens when both scale and intensity increase. These concepts are then related to the environmental Kuznets curve, which can be understood as a transition from brown to green growth. Ecological economics provides a macroperspective on economic growth. It offers broad policy principles, and it challenges the primacy of economic growth as a policy objective, but many important questions remain.

  7. Resource Economics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conrad, Jon M.

    1999-10-01

    Resource Economics is a text for students with a background in calculus, intermediate microeconomics, and a familiarity with the spreadsheet software Excel. The book covers basic concepts, shows how to set up spreadsheets to solve dynamic allocation problems, and presents economic models for fisheries, forestry, nonrenewable resources, stock pollutants, option value, and sustainable development. Within the text, numerical examples are posed and solved using Excel's Solver. Through these examples and additional exercises at the end of each chapter, students can make dynamic models operational, develop their economic intuition, and learn how to set up spreadsheets for the simulation of optimization of resource and environmental systems.

  8. Managing diversity.

    PubMed

    Wagner, M

    1991-09-30

    One look at projections for the U.S. work force through the year 2000 shows why healthcare administrators will be facing some new challenges. With the majority of new workers belonging to minority groups, "managing diversity" has become the newest catch phrase as executives work to reduce tensions resulting from race, gender or culture-based differences among workers, while also learning to understand and value those differences.

  9. Ecological Economics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Common, Michael; Stagl, Sigrid

    2005-10-01

    Taking as its starting point the interdependence of the economy and the natural environment, this book provides a comprehensive introduction to the emerging field of ecological economics. The authors, who have written extensively on the economics of sustainability, build on insights from both mainstream economics and ecological sciences. Part I explores the interdependence of the modern economy and its environment, while Part II focuses mainly on the economy and on economics. Part III looks at how national governments set policy targets and the instruments used to pursue those targets. Part IV examines international trade and institutions, and two major global threats to sustainability - climate change and biodiversity loss. Assuming no prior knowledge of economics, this textbook is well suited for use on interdisciplinary environmental science and management courses. It has extensive student-friendly features including discussion questions and exercises, keyword highlighting, real-world illustrations, further reading and website addresses. A comprehensive introduction to a developing field which will interest students from science, economics and management backgrounds A global approach to the problems of sustainability and sustainable development, issues which are increasingly prominent in political debate and policy making Filled with student-friendly features including focus areas for each chapter, keyword highlighting, real-world illustrations, discussion questions and exercises, further reading and website addresses

  10. Behavioral economics.

    PubMed

    Hursh, S R

    1984-11-01

    Economics, like behavioral psychology, is a science of behavior, albeit highly organized human behavior. The value of economic concepts for behavioral psychology rests on (1) their empirical validity when tested in the laboratory with individual subjects and (2) their uniqueness when compared to established behavioral concepts. Several fundamental concepts are introduced and illustrated by reference to experimental data: open and closed economies, elastic and inelastic demand, and substitution versus complementarity. Changes in absolute response rate are analyzed in relation to elasticity and intensity of demand. The economic concepts of substitution and complementarity are related to traditional behavioral studies of choice and to the matching relation. The economic approach has many implications for the future of behavioral research and theory. In general, economic concepts are grounded on a dynamic view of reinforcement. The closed-economy methodology extends the generality of behavioral principles to situations in which response rate and obtained rate of reinforcement are interdependent. Analysis of results in terms of elasticity and intensity of demand promises to provide a more direct method for characterizing the effects of "motivational" variables. Future studies of choice should arrange heterogeneous reinforcers with varying elasticities, use closed economies, and modulate scarcity or income. The economic analysis can be extended to the study of performances that involve subtle discriminations or skilled movements that vary in accuracy or quality as opposed to rate or quantity, and thus permit examination of time/accuracy trade-offs.

  11. Transonic transport study: Economics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, C. L.; Wilcox, D. E.

    1972-01-01

    An economic analysis was performed to evaluate the impact of advanced materials, increased aerodynamic and structural efficiencies, and cruise speed on advanced transport aircraft designed for cruise Mach numbers of .90, .98, and 1.15. A detailed weight statement was generated by an aircraft synthesis computer program called TRANSYN-TST; these weights were used to estimate the cost to develop and manufacture a fleet of aircraft of each configuration. The direct and indirect operating costs were estimated for each aircraft, and an average return on investment was calculated for various operating conditions. There was very little difference between the operating economics of the aircraft designed for Mach numbers .90 and .98. The Mach number 1.15 aircraft was economically marginal in comparison but showed significant improvements with the application of carbon/epoxy structural material. However, the Mach .90 and Mach .98 aircraft are the most economically attractive vehicles in the study.

  12. [On improvement of the mechanism for establishing and changing indicators of quality and food safety in the regulatory and legal acts of the Eurasian Economical Union].

    PubMed

    Arnautov, O V

    2016-01-01

    In accordance with the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) to ensure the sanitary and epidemiological welfare of the population within the Union, a coordinated policy in agreed policy in the sphere of application of sanitary measures is carried out. Sanitary measures are the obligatory requirements and procedures, including requirements for the final product, processing methods, production, transportation, storage and disposal, sampling procedures, methods of research (tests), risk assessment, the state registration, requirements for packaging directly aimed at ensuring the safety of products (goods) in order to protect human welfare, and they should be applied on the basis having a scientific explanation, and only to the extent that is necessary to protect human welfare. Sanitary measures applied within the Union should be based on international and regional standards, guidelines and (or) the recommendations, except when they based on appropriate scientific studies and explanations. In this case sanitary measures which could provide a higher level of sanitary protection are introduced. At present, the mechanism of the development, justification and approval of common sanitary and epidemiological requirements (ESR) and procedures of the Eurasian Economic Commission (the Commission) is not installed. The absence of a clear mechanism for the development, approval and implementation of the ESR to the products (goods) on the basis having a scientific explanation on the one hand could lead to the creation of unjustified barriers to foreign and mutual trade, on the other--to weaken the level of safety for human life and health of products (goods) placed on markets of the Union. In order to bring the regulatory legal acts of the Customs Union in accordance with the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union the Commission in cooperation with the competent authorities of the Member States in the field of sanitary and epidemiological welfare developed the project of

  13. [On improvement of the mechanism for establishing and changing indicators of quality and food safety in the regulatory and legal acts of the Eurasian Economical Union].

    PubMed

    Arnautov, O V

    2016-01-01

    In accordance with the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) to ensure the sanitary and epidemiological welfare of the population within the Union, a coordinated policy in agreed policy in the sphere of application of sanitary measures is carried out. Sanitary measures are the obligatory requirements and procedures, including requirements for the final product, processing methods, production, transportation, storage and disposal, sampling procedures, methods of research (tests), risk assessment, the state registration, requirements for packaging directly aimed at ensuring the safety of products (goods) in order to protect human welfare, and they should be applied on the basis having a scientific explanation, and only to the extent that is necessary to protect human welfare. Sanitary measures applied within the Union should be based on international and regional standards, guidelines and (or) the recommendations, except when they based on appropriate scientific studies and explanations. In this case sanitary measures which could provide a higher level of sanitary protection are introduced. At present, the mechanism of the development, justification and approval of common sanitary and epidemiological requirements (ESR) and procedures of the Eurasian Economic Commission (the Commission) is not installed. The absence of a clear mechanism for the development, approval and implementation of the ESR to the products (goods) on the basis having a scientific explanation on the one hand could lead to the creation of unjustified barriers to foreign and mutual trade, on the other--to weaken the level of safety for human life and health of products (goods) placed on markets of the Union. In order to bring the regulatory legal acts of the Customs Union in accordance with the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union the Commission in cooperation with the competent authorities of the Member States in the field of sanitary and epidemiological welfare developed the project of

  14. Economic evaluation of vaccines in Canada: A systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Chit, Ayman; Lee, Jason K. H.; Shim, Minsup; Nguyen, Van Hai; Grootendorst, Paul; Wu, Jianhong; Van Exan, Robert; Langley, Joanne M.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Background: Economic evaluations should form part of the basis for public health decision making on new vaccine programs. While Canada's national immunization advisory committee does not systematically include economic evaluations in immunization decision making, there is increasing interest in adopting them. We therefore sought to examine the extent and quality of economic evaluations of vaccines in Canada. Objective: We conducted a systematic review of economic evaluations of vaccines in Canada to determine and summarize: comprehensiveness across jurisdictions, studied vaccines, funding sources, study designs, research quality, and changes over time. Methods: Searches in multiple databases were conducted using the terms “vaccine,” “economics” and “Canada.” Descriptive data from eligible manuscripts was abstracted and three authors independently evaluated manuscript quality using a 7-point Likert-type scale scoring tool based on criteria from the International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR). Results: 42/175 articles met the search criteria. Of these, Canada-wide studies were most common (25/42), while provincial studies largely focused on the three populous provinces of Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia. The most common funding source was industry (17/42), followed by government (7/42). 38 studies used mathematical models estimating expected economic benefit while 4 studies examined post-hoc data on established programs. Studies covered 10 diseases, with 28/42 addressing pediatric vaccines. Many studies considered cost-utility (22/42) and the majority of these studies reported favorable economic results (16/22). The mean quality score was 5.9/7 and was consistent over publication date, funding sources, and disease areas. Conclusions: We observed diverse approaches to evaluate vaccine economics in Canada. Given the increased complexity of economic studies evaluating vaccines and the impact of results on public

  15. The economic and poverty impacts of animal diseases in developing countries: new roles, new demands for economics and epidemiology.

    PubMed

    Rich, Karl M; Perry, Brian D

    2011-09-01

    Animal disease outbreaks pose significant threats to livestock sectors throughout the world, both from the standpoint of the economic impacts of the disease itself and the measures taken to mitigate the risk of disease introduction. These impacts are multidimensional and not always well understood, complicating effective policy response. In the developing world, livestock diseases have broader, more nuanced effects on markets, poverty, and livelihoods, given the diversity of uses of livestock and complexity of livestock value chains. In both settings, disease control strategies, particularly those informed by ex ante modeling platforms, often fail to recognize the constraints inherent among farmers, veterinary services, and other value chain actors. In short, context matters. Correspondingly, an important gap in the animal health economics literature is the explicit incorporation of behavior and incentives in impact analyses that highlight the interactions of disease with its socio-economic and institutional setting. In this paper, we examine new approaches and frameworks for the analysis of economic and poverty impacts of animal diseases. We propose greater utilization of "bottom-up" analyses, highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of value chain and information economics approaches in impact analyses and stressing the importance of improved integration between the epidemiology of disease and its relationships with economic behavior. PMID:20828844

  16. Economics of food irradiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kunstadt, Peter; Eng, P.; Steeves, Colyn; Beaulieu, Daniel; Eng, P.

    1993-07-01

    The number of products being radiation processed worldwide is constantly increasing and today includes such diverse items as medical disposables, fruits and vegetables, spices, meats, seafoods and waste products. This range of products to be processed has resulted in a wide range of irradiator designs and capital and operating cost requirements. This paper discusses the economics of low dose food irradiation applications and the effects of various parameters on unit processing costs. It provides a model for calculating specific unit processing costs by correlating known capital costs with annual operating costs and annual throughputs. It is intended to provide the reader with a general knowledge of how unit processing costs are derived.

  17. Education & Diversity Reception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2016-03-01

    Join us to relax, unwind, and recognize new fellows and award winners at the Education & Diversity Reception sponsored by the Forum on Education, the Committee on Minorities, and the Committee on the Status of Women in Physics. We will recognize new Forum on Education Fellows, recipients of the Committee on Education's Award for Improving Undergraduate Physics Education, as well as women and minority physicists who have received APS prizes, awards, and fellowships. Light refreshments will be served. All are welcome; no registration required.

  18. Cell-wall properties contributing to improved deconstruction by alkaline pre-treatment and enzymatic hydrolysis in diverse maize (Zea mays L.) lines

    PubMed Central

    Li, Muyang; Heckwolf, Marlies; Crowe, Jacob D.; Williams, Daniel L.; Magee, Timothy D.; Kaeppler, Shawn M.; de Leon, Natalia; Hodge, David B.

    2015-01-01

    A maize (Zea mays L. subsp. mays) diversity panel consisting of 26 maize lines exhibiting a wide range of cell-wall properties and responses to hydrolysis by cellulolytic enzymes was employed to investigate the relationship between cell-wall properties, cell-wall responses to mild NaOH pre-treatment, and enzymatic hydrolysis yields. Enzymatic hydrolysis of the cellulose in the untreated maize was found to be positively correlated with the water retention value, which is a measure of cell-wall susceptibility to swelling. It was also positively correlated with the lignin syringyl/guaiacyl ratio and negatively correlated with the initial cell-wall lignin, xylan, acetate, and p-coumaric acid (pCA) content, as well as pCA released from the cell wall by pre-treatment. The hydrolysis yield following pre-treatment exhibited statistically significant negative correlations to the lignin content after pre-treatment and positive correlations to the solubilized ferulic acid and pCA. Several unanticipated results were observed, including a positive correlation between initial lignin and acetate content, lack of correlation between acetate content and initial xylan content, and negative correlation between each of these three variables to the hydrolysis yields for untreated maize. Another surprising result was that pCA release was negatively correlated with hydrolysis yields for untreated maize and, along with ferulic acid release, was positively correlated with the pre-treated maize hydrolysis yields. This indicates that these properties that may negatively contribute to the recalcitrance in untreated cell walls may positively contribute to their deconstruction by alkaline pre-treatment. PMID:25871649

  19. Cell-wall properties contributing to improved deconstruction by alkaline pre-treatment and enzymatic hydrolysis in diverse maize (Zea mays L.) lines.

    PubMed

    Li, Muyang; Heckwolf, Marlies; Crowe, Jacob D; Williams, Daniel L; Magee, Timothy D; Kaeppler, Shawn M; de Leon, Natalia; Hodge, David B

    2015-07-01

    A maize (Zea mays L. subsp. mays) diversity panel consisting of 26 maize lines exhibiting a wide range of cell-wall properties and responses to hydrolysis by cellulolytic enzymes was employed to investigate the relationship between cell-wall properties, cell-wall responses to mild NaOH pre-treatment, and enzymatic hydrolysis yields. Enzymatic hydrolysis of the cellulose in the untreated maize was found to be positively correlated with the water retention value, which is a measure of cell-wall susceptibility to swelling. It was also positively correlated with the lignin syringyl/guaiacyl ratio and negatively correlated with the initial cell-wall lignin, xylan, acetate, and p-coumaric acid (pCA) content, as well as pCA released from the cell wall by pre-treatment. The hydrolysis yield following pre-treatment exhibited statistically significant negative correlations to the lignin content after pre-treatment and positive correlations to the solubilized ferulic acid and pCA. Several unanticipated results were observed, including a positive correlation between initial lignin and acetate content, lack of correlation between acetate content and initial xylan content, and negative correlation between each of these three variables to the hydrolysis yields for untreated maize. Another surprising result was that pCA release was negatively correlated with hydrolysis yields for untreated maize and, along with ferulic acid release, was positively correlated with the pre-treated maize hydrolysis yields. This indicates that these properties that may negatively contribute to the recalcitrance in untreated cell walls may positively contribute to their deconstruction by alkaline pre-treatment.

  20. The Evolution of Building a Diverse Geosciences in the United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keane, Christopher; Houlton, Heather; Leahy, P. Patrick

    2016-04-01

    Since the 1960s, the United States has had numerous systematic efforts to support diversity in all parts of society. The American Geosciences Institute has had active ongoing research and diversity promotion programs in the geosciences since 1972. Over this time, the drivers and goals of promoting a diverse discipline have evolved, including in the scope and definition of diversity. The success of these efforts have been mixed, largely driven by wildly different responses by specific gender and racial subsets of the population. Some critical cultural barriers have been solidly identified and mitigation approaches promoted. For example, the use of field work in promotion of geoscience careers and education programs is viewed as a distinct negative by many African American and Hispanic communities as it equates geoscience as non-professional work. Similarly, efforts at improving gender diversity have had great success, especially in the private sector, as life-balance policies and mitigations of implicit biases have been addressed. Yet success in addressing some of these cultural and behavioral issues has also started to unveil other overarching factors, such as the role of socio-economic and geographic location. Recent critical changes in the definition of diversity that have been implemented will be discussed. These include dropping Asian races as underrepresented, the introduction of the multiracial definition, evolution of the nature of gender, and the increased awareness of persons with disabilities as a critical diverse population. This has been coupled with dramatic changes in the drivers for promoting diversity in the geosciences in the U.S. from a moral and ethical good to one of economic imperative and recognizing the way to access the best talent in the population as the U.S. rapidly approaches being a majority minority society. These changes are leading to new approaches and strategies, for which we will highlight specific programmatic efforts both by AGI

  1. Exploring Gender and Economic Development in Appalachia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Latimer, Melissa; Oberhauser, Ann M.

    2004-01-01

    This article highlights how dynamic gender relations affect the diverse experiences of men and women in Appalachia's economic development. The analysis draws from the 1990 and 2000 U.S. Census data to examine and compare the demographic, social, and economic conditions of women and men in Appalachia. The discussion focuses on geographical…

  2. Development and Families: Implications for Home Economics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murray, Eloise

    1985-01-01

    This article integrates literature from such diverse sources as population, agriculture, women in development, macro-economics, and health studies to document the changes that have occurred in families in the last 20-25 years. Program issues for the home economics profession are considered in light of these changes. (CT)

  3. Airship economics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Neumann, R. D.; Hackney, L. R. M.

    1975-01-01

    Projected operating and manufacturing costs of a large airship design which are considered practical with today's technology and environment are discussed. Data and information developed during an 18-month study on the question of feasibility, engineering, economics and production problems related to a large metalclad type airship are considered. An overview of other classic airship designs are provided, and why metalclad was selected as the most prudent and most economic design to be considered in the 1970-80 era is explained. Crew operation, ATC and enroute requirements are covered along with the question of handling, maintenance and application of systems to the large airship.

  4. Cultural targeting and tailoring of shared decision making technology: a theoretical framework for improving the effectiveness of patient decision aids in culturally diverse groups.

    PubMed

    Alden, Dana L; Friend, John; Schapira, Marilyn; Stiggelbout, Anne

    2014-03-01

    Patient decision aids are known to positively impact outcomes critical to shared decision making (SDM), such as gist knowledge and decision preparedness. However, research on the potential improvement of these and other important outcomes through cultural targeting and tailoring of decision aids is very limited. This is the case despite extensive evidence supporting use of cultural targeting and tailoring to improve the effectiveness of health communications. Building on prominent psychological theory, we propose a two-stage framework incorporating cultural concepts into the design process for screening and treatment decision aids. The first phase recommends use of cultural constructs, such as collectivism and individualism, to differentially target patients whose cultures are known to vary on these dimensions. Decision aid targeting is operationalized through use of symbols and values that appeal to members of the given culture. Content dimensions within decision aids that appear particularly appropriate for targeting include surface level visual characteristics, language, beliefs, attitudes and values. The second phase of the framework is based on evidence that individuals vary in terms of how strongly cultural norms influence their approach to problem solving and decision making. In particular, the framework hypothesizes that differences in terms of access to cultural mindsets (e.g., access to interdependent versus independent self) can be measured up front and used to tailor decision aids. Thus, the second phase in the framework emphasizes the importance of not only targeting decision aid content, but also tailoring the information to the individual based on measurement of how strongly he/she is connected to dominant cultural mindsets. Overall, the framework provides a theory-based guide for researchers and practitioners who are interested in using cultural targeting and tailoring to develop and test decision aids that move beyond a "one-size fits all" approach

  5. Cultural targeting and tailoring of shared decision making technology: a theoretical framework for improving the effectiveness of patient decision aids in culturally diverse groups.

    PubMed

    Alden, Dana L; Friend, John; Schapira, Marilyn; Stiggelbout, Anne

    2014-03-01

    Patient decision aids are known to positively impact outcomes critical to shared decision making (SDM), such as gist knowledge and decision preparedness. However, research on the potential improvement of these and other important outcomes through cultural targeting and tailoring of decision aids is very limited. This is the case despite extensive evidence supporting use of cultural targeting and tailoring to improve the effectiveness of health communications. Building on prominent psychological theory, we propose a two-stage framework incorporating cultural concepts into the design process for screening and treatment decision aids. The first phase recommends use of cultural constructs, such as collectivism and individualism, to differentially target patients whose cultures are known to vary on these dimensions. Decision aid targeting is operationalized through use of symbols and values that appeal to members of the given culture. Content dimensions within decision aids that appear particularly appropriate for targeting include surface level visual characteristics, language, beliefs, attitudes and values. The second phase of the framework is based on evidence that individuals vary in terms of how strongly cultural norms influence their approach to problem solving and decision making. In particular, the framework hypothesizes that differences in terms of access to cultural mindsets (e.g., access to interdependent versus independent self) can be measured up front and used to tailor decision aids. Thus, the second phase in the framework emphasizes the importance of not only targeting decision aid content, but also tailoring the information to the individual based on measurement of how strongly he/she is connected to dominant cultural mindsets. Overall, the framework provides a theory-based guide for researchers and practitioners who are interested in using cultural targeting and tailoring to develop and test decision aids that move beyond a "one-size fits all" approach

  6. Residents' diverse perspectives of the impact of neighbourhood renewal on quality of life and physical activity engagement: Improvements but unresolved issues

    PubMed Central

    Coulson, J.C.; Fox, K.R.; Lawlor, D.A.; Trayers, T.

    2011-01-01

    Few studies have been published on the reactions of residents to modifications of their residential landscape. We explored residents' experiences of home zone remodelling and construction of a new cycle-walkway in a deprived neighbourhood with a particular focus on aspects of quality of life and physical activity participation. Focus groups (n=5 groups, 21 individuals) were used to investigate residents' perceptions of the effects of neighbourhood change on their lives. Consultation by planners was received positively. Several aspects of the neighbourhood were perceived to have improved, including spatial aesthetics, lighting and streetscape planting. However, influence on physical activity was minimal. Car-focused behaviour and ownership remained dominant, and safety related concerns limited behavioural choices. Residents highlighted many socio-environmental challenges that remained such as sense of neighbourhood safety, poor public transport provision, people's parking behaviour locally, and problem neighbours, and these tended to dominate conversations. Infrastructural intervention may be one important part of multi-layered solutions to improved neighbourhood life. PMID:21145277

  7. Economic Imperative

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sack, Joetta L.

    2005-01-01

    The signals had been there for years. Task force reports and researchers all predicted it. Then, in the late 1990s, the economic collapse in this blue-collar region of central Maine began. First, the Cascade Co. closed its textile mill. Then the C.F. Hathaway Co. shut down, and Dumont Industries followed suit soon after. Several stores and other…

  8. Home Economics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ontario Dept. of Education, Toronto. School Planning and Building Research Section.

    This presentation of suggested layouts and specifications for home economics facilities has been prepared to be of service to school boards, architects, teachers, and administrators who are planning new schools or making renovations to existing structures. Room layouts are shown for a foods and nutrition room, or the foods and nutrition area of a…

  9. Economic Blues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuart, Reginald

    2009-01-01

    Today, a national economy gone bust has derailed Black Americans' plans across the country. Gone are many of the economic gains, small as they were, achieved in the post-segregation era by millions of 1960s generation children and their children. Black America today is beset by job losses, business closures, pay cuts, furloughs, investment and…

  10. Cable Economics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cable Television Information Center, Washington, DC.

    A guide to the economic factors that influence cable television systems is presented. Designed for local officials who must have some familiarity with cable operations in order to make optimum decisions, the guide analyzes the financial framework of a cable system, not only from the operators viewpoint, but also from the perspective of the…

  11. Economic impact

    SciTech Connect

    Technology Transfer Department

    2001-06-01

    In federal fiscal year 2000 (FY00), Berkeley Lab had 4,347 full- and part-time employees. In addition, at any given time of the year, there were more than 1,000 Laboratory guests. These guests, who also reside locally, have an important economic impact on the nine-county Bay Area. However, Berkeley Lab's total economic impact transcends the direct effects of payroll and purchasing. The direct dollars paid to the Lab's employees in the form of wages, salaries, and benefits, and payments made to contractors for goods and services, are respent by employees and contractors again and again in the local and greater economy. Further, while Berkeley Lab has a strong reputation for basic scientific research, many of the Lab's scientific discoveries and inventions have had direct application in industry, spawning new businesses and creating new opportunities for existing firms. This analysis updates the Economic Impact Analysis done in 1996, and its purpose is to describe the economic and geographic impact of Laboratory expenditures and to provide a qualitative understanding of how Berkeley Lab impacts and supports the local community. It is intended as a guide for state, local, and national policy makers as well as local community members. Unless otherwise noted, this analysis uses data from FY00, the most recent year for which full data are available.

  12. Resource Economics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conrad, Jon M.

    2000-01-01

    Resource Economics is a text for students with a background in calculus, intermediate microeconomics, and a familiarity with the spreadsheet software Excel. The book covers basic concepts, shows how to set up spreadsheets to solve dynamic allocation problems, and presents economic models for fisheries, forestry, nonrenewable resources, stock pollutants, option value, and sustainable development. Within the text, numerical examples are posed and solved using Excel's Solver. These problems help make concepts operational, develop economic intuition, and serve as a bridge to the study of real-world problems of resource management. Through these examples and additional exercises at the end of Chapters 1 to 8, students can make dynamic models operational, develop their economic intuition, and learn how to set up spreadsheets for the simulation of optimization of resource and environmental systems. Book is unique in its use of spreadsheet software (Excel) to solve dynamic allocation problems Conrad is co-author of a previous book for the Press on the subject for graduate students Approach is extremely student-friendly; gives students the tools to apply research results to actual environmental issues

  13. Economic Growth.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Neill, James B.; And Others

    1986-01-01

    A conceptual introduction for teachers explains economic growth and how it is measured. Four instructional units follow, beginning with a preschool and kindergarten unit which offers young students an opportunity to interview puppet workers, set up a classroom corner store, and learn the importance of capital resources for increasing productivity…

  14. Improvement of Human Resources Quality through Vocational Training in Tourism in Karimunjawa Islands (Central Java, Indonesia): A Pro-Economical Tourism Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Putro, S. Eko; Sukirno; Budi, S.; Didik, W.

    2016-01-01

    The effort to improve human resource quality is not easy to be implemented. This effort becomes more complicated to do when implemented to the group of poor community, especially in this case marginal community of small island. This research analyzes the characteristic of poor household in small island as well as the strategy of poverty…

  15. Application of reservoir characterization and advanced technology to improve recovery and economics in a lower quality shallow shelf San Andres Reservoir. Annual report, August 4, 1996--August 3, 1997

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor, A.R.; Hickman, T.S.; Justice, J.J.

    1997-07-30

    The Oxy West Welch Project is designed to demonstrate how the use of advanced technology can improve the economics of miscible CO{sub 2} injection projects in lower quality shallow shelf carbonate reservoirs. The research and development phase (Budget Period 1) primarily involved advanced reservoir characterization. The current demonstration phase (Budget Period 2) will implement the reservoir management plan for an optimum miscible CO{sub 2} flood design based on the reservoir characterization. Although Budget Period 1 officially ended 12/31/96, reservoir characterization and optimum flood design has continued into the first part of Budget Period 2. Specifically, the geologic model was enhanced by integration of the 3-D seismic interpretations. This resulted in improved history match by the simulator and more accurate predictions of flood performance on which to base the project design. The majority of the project design work has been completed, material specifications provided and bids solicited. Preparation of the demonstration area is well underway.

  16. Hybrid support vector regression and autoregressive integrated moving average models improved by particle swarm optimization for property crime rates forecasting with economic indicators.

    PubMed

    Alwee, Razana; Shamsuddin, Siti Mariyam Hj; Sallehuddin, Roselina

    2013-01-01

    Crimes forecasting is an important area in the field of criminology. Linear models, such as regression and econometric models, are commonly applied in crime forecasting. However, in real crimes data, it is common that the data consists of both linear and nonlinear components. A single model may not be sufficient to identify all the characteristics of the data. The purpose of this study is to introduce a hybrid model that combines support vector regression (SVR) and autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) to be applied in crime rates forecasting. SVR is very robust with small training data and high-dimensional problem. Meanwhile, ARIMA has the ability to model several types of time series. However, the accuracy of the SVR model depends on values of its parameters, while ARIMA is not robust to be applied to small data sets. Therefore, to overcome this problem, particle swarm optimization is used to estimate the parameters of the SVR and ARIMA models. The proposed hybrid model is used to forecast the property crime rates of the United State based on economic indicators. The experimental results show that the proposed hybrid model is able to produce more accurate forecasting results as compared to the individual models.

  17. Hybrid Support Vector Regression and Autoregressive Integrated Moving Average Models Improved by Particle Swarm Optimization for Property Crime Rates Forecasting with Economic Indicators

    PubMed Central

    Alwee, Razana; Hj Shamsuddin, Siti Mariyam; Sallehuddin, Roselina

    2013-01-01

    Crimes forecasting is an important area in the field of criminology. Linear models, such as regression and econometric models, are commonly applied in crime forecasting. However, in real crimes data, it is common that the data consists of both linear and nonlinear components. A single model may not be sufficient to identify all the characteristics of the data. The purpose of this study is to introduce a hybrid model that combines support vector regression (SVR) and autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) to be applied in crime rates forecasting. SVR is very robust with small training data and high-dimensional problem. Meanwhile, ARIMA has the ability to model several types of time series. However, the accuracy of the SVR model depends on values of its parameters, while ARIMA is not robust to be applied to small data sets. Therefore, to overcome this problem, particle swarm optimization is used to estimate the parameters of the SVR and ARIMA models. The proposed hybrid model is used to forecast the property crime rates of the United State based on economic indicators. The experimental results show that the proposed hybrid model is able to produce more accurate forecasting results as compared to the individual models. PMID:23766729

  18. Hybrid support vector regression and autoregressive integrated moving average models improved by particle swarm optimization for property crime rates forecasting with economic indicators.

    PubMed

    Alwee, Razana; Shamsuddin, Siti Mariyam Hj; Sallehuddin, Roselina

    2013-01-01

    Crimes forecasting is an important area in the field of criminology. Linear models, such as regression and econometric models, are commonly applied in crime forecasting. However, in real crimes data, it is common that the data consists of both linear and nonlinear components. A single model may not be sufficient to identify all the characteristics of the data. The purpose of this study is to introduce a hybrid model that combines support vector regression (SVR) and autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) to be applied in crime rates forecasting. SVR is very robust with small training data and high-dimensional problem. Meanwhile, ARIMA has the ability to model several types of time series. However, the accuracy of the SVR model depends on values of its parameters, while ARIMA is not robust to be applied to small data sets. Therefore, to overcome this problem, particle swarm optimization is used to estimate the parameters of the SVR and ARIMA models. The proposed hybrid model is used to forecast the property crime rates of the United State based on economic indicators. The experimental results show that the proposed hybrid model is able to produce more accurate forecasting results as compared to the individual models. PMID:23766729

  19. Engendering economics.

    PubMed

    1995-08-01

    Gender has become a major issue in discussions of economic development, with international organizations having generated studies which demonstrate that investments in women yield high returns in productivity, child health, and family welfare. Discussions of gender usually have been compartmentalized, with little impact upon broader studies of development. Examining the role that gender plays in economic life, however, could lead to a better understanding of the role which social institutions play in development. The author discusses reexamining gender bias and collective action by men and women with respect to property rights, family law, and the labor market. It is noted in closing that individual preferences are partially shaped by social norms which are strongly influenced by the coalitions which hold power in a society. As women gain collective power, they are likely to challenge the social norms which are costly to them.

  20. Diverse Classrooms, Diverse Curriculum, Diverse Complications: Three Teacher Perspectives

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ungemah, Lori D.

    2015-01-01

    Racial, ethnic, linguistic, and religious diversity continues to increase in classrooms. Many call for a more diverse curriculum, but curricular diversity brings its own challenges to both teachers and students. These three vignettes are drawn from my ethnographic data at Atlantic High School in Brooklyn, New York, where I worked for ten years as…

  1. Biliopancreatic diversion.

    PubMed

    Scopinaro, N; Adami, G F; Marinari, G M; Gianetta, E; Traverso, E; Friedman, D; Camerini, G; Baschieri, G; Simonelli, A

    1998-09-01

    Biliopancreatic diversion (BPD) has made reacceptable the malabsorptive approach to the surgical treatment of obesity. The procedure, in a series of 2241 patients operated on during a 21-year period, caused a mean permanent reduction of about 75% of the initial excess weight. The indefinite weight maintenance appears to be due to the existence of a threshold absorption capacity for fat and starch, and thus energy, and the weight loss is partly due to increased resting energy expenditure. Beneficial effects other than those consequent to weight loss or reduced nutrient absorption included permanent normalization of serum glucose and cholesterol without any medication and on totally free diet in 100% of cases, both phenomena being due to a specific action of the operation. Operative mortality was less than 0.5%. Specific late complications included anemia, less than 5% with adequate iron or folate supplementation (or both); stomal ulcer, reduced to 3.2% by oral H2-blocker prophylaxis; bone demineralization, increasing up to the fourth year and tending to decrease thereafter, with need of calcium and vitamin D supplementation; neurologic complications, totally avoidable by prompt vitamin B administration to patients at risk; protein malnutrition, which was reduced to a minimum of 3% with 1.3% recurrence, in exchange with a smaller weight loss, by adapting the volume of the gastric remnant and the length of the alimentary limb to the patient's individual characteristics. It is concluded that the correct use of BPD, based on the knowledge of its mechanisms of action, can make the procedure an effective, safe one in all hands.

  2. Genetic diversity and species diversity of stream fishes covary across a land-use gradient

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Blum, M.J.; Bagley, M.J.; Walters, D.M.; Jackson, S.A.; Daniel, F.B.; Chaloud, D.J.; Cade, B.S.

    2012-01-01

    Genetic diversity and species diversity are expected to covary according to area and isolation, but may not always covary with environmental heterogeneity. In this study, we examined how patterns of genetic and species diversity in stream fishes correspond to local and regional environmental conditions. To do so, we compared population size, genetic diversity and divergence in central stonerollers (Campostoma anomalum) to measures of species diversity and turnover in stream fish assemblages among similarly sized watersheds across an agriculture-forest land-use gradient in the Little Miami River basin (Ohio, USA). Significant correlations were found in many, but not all, pair-wise comparisons. Allelic richness and species richness were strongly correlated, for example, but diversity measures based on allele frequencies and assemblage structure were not. In-stream conditions related to agricultural land use were identified as significant predictors of genetic diversity and species diversity. Comparisons to population size indicate, however, that genetic diversity and species diversity are not necessarily independent and that variation also corresponds to watershed location and glaciation history in the drainage basin. Our findings demonstrate that genetic diversity and species diversity can covary in stream fish assemblages, and illustrate the potential importance of scaling observations to capture responses to hierarchical environmental variation. More comparisons according to life history variation could further improve understanding of conditions that give rise to parallel variation in genetic diversity and species diversity, which in turn could improve diagnosis of anthropogenic influences on aquatic ecosystems. ?? 2011 Springer-Verlag.

  3. Representing the Economic Geographies of "Others": Reconsidering the Global South

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murphy, James T.

    2006-01-01

    This essay examines how undergraduate economic geography courses in Anglo-American institutions traditionally frame economic activities in developing regions and asserts that mainstream approaches have devalued the complexity and diversity of economic geographies in the Global South. Focusing on developmentalism as a commonly used heuristic frame,…

  4. Orbital-optimized opposite-spin scaled second order correlation: An economical method to improve the description of open-shell molecules

    SciTech Connect

    Lochan, Rohini C.; Head-Gordon, Martin

    2007-01-01

    Coupled cluster methods based on Brueckner orbitals are well-known to resolve the problems of symmetry-breaking and spin-contamination that are often associated with Hartree-Fock orbitals. However their computational cost is large enough to prevent application to large molecules. Here they present a simple approximation where the orbitals are optimized with the mean-field energy plus a correlation energy taken as the opposite-spin component of the second order many-body correlation energy, scaled by an empirically chosen parameter (recommended as 1.2 for general applications). This optimized 2nd order opposite spin (abbreviated as O2) method requires fourth order computation on each orbital iteration. O2 is shown to yield predictions of structure and frequencies for closed shell molecules that are very similar to scaled second order Moller-Plesset methods. However it yields substantial improvements for open shell molecules, where problems with spin-contamination and symmetry breaking are shown to be greatly reduced.

  5. The Chief Diversity Officer

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, Damon; Wade-Golden, Katrina

    2007-01-01

    Numerous institutions are moving toward the chief diversity officer model of leading and managing diversity in higher education. These officers carry formal administrative titles and ranks that range from vice president for institutional diversity to associate vice chancellor for diversity and climate and dean of diversity and academic engagement.…

  6. Application of reservoir characterization and advanced technology to improve recovery and economics in a lower quality shallow shelf carbonate reservoir. End of budget period report, August 3, 1994--December 31, 1996

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor, A.R.; Hinterlong, G.; Watts, G.; Justice, J.; Brown, K.; Hickman, T.S.

    1997-12-01

    The Oxy West Welch project is designed to demonstrate how the use of advanced technology can improve the economics of miscible CO{sub 2} injection projects in a lower quality shallow shelf carbonate reservoir. The research and design phase primarily involves advanced reservoir characterization and accelerating the production response. The demonstration phase will implement the reservoir management plan based on an optimum miscible CO{sub 2} flood as designed in the initial phase. During Budget Period 1, work was completed on the CO{sub 2} stimulation treatments and the hydraulic fracture design. Analysis of the CO{sub 2} stimulation treatment provided a methodology for predicting results. The hydraulic fracture treatment proved up both the fracture design approach a and the use of passive seismic for mapping the fracture wing orientation. Although the 3-D seismic interpretation is still being integrated into the geologic model and interpretation of borehole seismic is still underway, the simulator has been enhanced to the point of giving good waterflood history matches. The simulator-forecasted results for an optimal designed miscible CO{sub 2} flood in the demonstration area gave sufficient economics to justify continuation of the project into Budget Period 2.

  7. Economic Knowledge, Economic Education and Public Opinion on Economic Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walstad, William B.

    This research study was based upon a national survey in March 1992, conducted to assess the economic literacy of the U.S. public. The survey data were used to measure the economic knowledge of the public, to identify factors that affect economic knowledge, and to evaluate the influence of economic knowledge on public opinion about current economic…

  8. Use of behavioral economics and social psychology to improve treatment of acute respiratory infections (BEARI): rationale and design of a cluster randomized controlled trial [1RC4AG039115-01] - study protocol and baseline practice and provider characteristics

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Inappropriate antibiotic prescribing for nonbacterial infections leads to increases in the costs of care, antibiotic resistance among bacteria, and adverse drug events. Acute respiratory infections (ARIs) are the most common reason for inappropriate antibiotic use. Most prior efforts to decrease inappropriate antibiotic prescribing for ARIs (e.g., educational or informational interventions) have relied on the implicit assumption that clinicians inappropriately prescribe antibiotics because they are unaware of guideline recommendations for ARIs. If lack of guideline awareness is not the reason for inappropriate prescribing, educational interventions may have limited impact on prescribing rates. Instead, interventions that apply social psychological and behavioral economic principles may be more effective in deterring inappropriate antibiotic prescribing for ARIs by well-informed clinicians. Methods/design The Application of Behavioral Economics to Improve the Treatment of Acute Respiratory Infections (BEARI) Trial is a multisite, cluster-randomized controlled trial with practice as the unit of randomization. The primary aim is to test the ability of three interventions based on behavioral economic principles to reduce the rate of inappropriate antibiotic prescribing for ARIs. We randomized practices in a 2 × 2 × 2 factorial design to receive up to three interventions for non-antibiotic-appropriate diagnoses: 1) Accountable Justifications: When prescribing an antibiotic for an ARI, clinicians are prompted to record an explicit justification that appears in the patient electronic health record; 2) Suggested Alternatives: Through computerized clinical decision support, clinicians prescribing an antibiotic for an ARI receive a list of non-antibiotic treatment choices (including prescription options) prior to completing the antibiotic prescription; and 3) Peer Comparison: Each provider’s rate of inappropriate antibiotic prescribing relative to top

  9. Michigan Economic Development Education Manual. Second Printing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conboy, Michael, Ed.; Guiles, Roger, Ed.

    This manual represents an educational program designed for public officials, interested citizens, and professionals interested in improving the economic climate of the municipality or region. Its purpose is to teach economic development skills, thus enabling participants to develop community economic growth plans. Focus is on four essential…

  10. Economic Inequality Predicts Biodiversity Loss

    PubMed Central

    Mikkelson, Gregory M.; Gonzalez, Andrew; Peterson, Garry D.

    2007-01-01

    Human activity is causing high rates of biodiversity loss. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the extent to which socioeconomic factors exacerbate or ameliorate our impacts on biological diversity. One such factor, economic inequality, has been shown to affect public health, and has been linked to environmental problems in general. We tested how strongly economic inequality is related to biodiversity loss in particular. We found that among countries, and among US states, the number of species that are threatened or declining increases substantially with the Gini ratio of income inequality. At both levels of analysis, the connection between income inequality and biodiversity loss persists after controlling for biophysical conditions, human population size, and per capita GDP or income. Future research should explore potential mechanisms behind this equality-biodiversity relationship. Our results suggest that economic reforms would go hand in hand with, if not serving as a prerequisite for, effective conservation. PMID:17505535

  11. Economic inequality predicts biodiversity loss.

    PubMed

    Mikkelson, Gregory M; Gonzalez, Andrew; Peterson, Garry D

    2007-05-16

    Human activity is causing high rates of biodiversity loss. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the extent to which socioeconomic factors exacerbate or ameliorate our impacts on biological diversity. One such factor, economic inequality, has been shown to affect public health, and has been linked to environmental problems in general. We tested how strongly economic inequality is related to biodiversity loss in particular. We found that among countries, and among US states, the number of species that are threatened or declining increases substantially with the Gini ratio of income inequality. At both levels of analysis, the connection between income inequality and biodiversity loss persists after controlling for biophysical conditions, human population size, and per capita GDP or income. Future research should explore potential mechanisms behind this equality-biodiversity relationship. Our results suggest that economic reforms would go hand in hand with, if not serving as a prerequisite for, effective conservation.

  12. Comparative assessment of genetic diversity in cytoplasmic and nuclear genome of upland cotton.

    PubMed

    Egamberdiev, Sharof S; Saha, Sukumar; Salakhutdinov, Ilkhom; Jenkins, Johnie N; Deng, Dewayne; Y Abdurakhmonov, Ibrokhim

    2016-06-01

    The importance of the cytoplasmic genome for many economically important traits is well documented in several crop species, including cotton. There is no report on application of cotton chloroplast specific SSR markers as a diagnostic tool to study genetic diversity among improved Upland cotton lines. The complete plastome sequence information in GenBank provided us an opportunity to report on 17 chloroplast specific SSR markers using a cost-effective data mining strategy. Here we report the comparative analysis of genetic diversity among a set of 42 improved Upland cotton lines using SSR markers specific to chloroplast and nuclear genome, respectively. Our results revealed that low to moderate level of genetic diversity existed in both nuclear and cytoplasm genome among this set of cotton lines. However, the specific estimation suggested that genetic diversity is lower in cytoplasmic genome compared to the nuclear genome among this set of Upland cotton lines. In summary, this research is important from several perspectives. We detected a set of cytoplasm genome specific SSR primer pairs by using a cost-effective data mining strategy. We reported for the first time the genetic diversity in the cytoplasmic genome within a set of improved Upland cotton accessions. Results revealed that the genetic diversity in cytoplasmic genome is narrow, compared to the nuclear genome within this set of Upland cotton accessions. Our results suggested that most of these polymorphic chloroplast SSRs would be a valuable complementary tool in addition to the nuclear SSR in the study of evolution, gene flow and genetic diversity in Upland cotton.

  13. Leading for Diversity Video Kit

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henze, Rosemary C.

    2004-01-01

    The video and facilitator's guide accompanying the author's book, "Leading for Diversity," feature the four key principles for improving ethnic relations found in the book: (1) Building Community; (2) Affirming Identity; (3) Cultivating Student Leadership; and (4) Addressing Root Causes. This video, directed by the author, features real classroom…

  14. Enhancing the diversity of the pediatrician workforce.

    PubMed

    Friedman, Aaron L

    2007-04-01

    This policy statement describes the key issues related to diversity within the pediatrician and health care workforce to identify barriers to enhancing diversity and offer policy recommendations to overcome these barriers in the future. The statement addresses topics such as health disparities, affirmative action, recent policy developments and reports on workforce diversity, and research on patient and provider diversity. It also broadens the discussion of diversity beyond the traditional realms of race and ethnicity to include cultural attributes that may have an effect on the quality of health care. Although workforce diversity is related to the provision of culturally effective pediatric care, it is a discrete issue that merits separate discussion and policy formulation. At the heart of this policy-driven action are multiorganizational and multispecialty collaborations designed to address substantive educational, financial, organizational, and other barriers to improved workforce diversity. PMID:17403859

  15. Technical Note: Ethical Economics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blodgett, J.

    Ethical economics is inspirational, expanding our vision beyond the narrow self-interest of the theoretical economic man. Ethical economics sees more value in space settlement than conventional economic calculations that can inappropriately discount the value of the future.

  16. Improvements in computer-aided detection/computer-aided classification (CAD/CAC) of bottom mines through post analysis of a diverse set of very shallow water (VSW) environmental test data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ciany, Charles M.; Zurawski, William C.

    2004-09-01

    In 1999 Raytheon adapted its shallow-water Side-Looking Sonar (SLS) Computer Aided Detection/Computer Aided Classification (CAD/CAC) algorithm to process side-scan sonar data obtained with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute's Remote Environmental Monitoring Units (REMUS) autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV). To date, Raytheon has demonstrated the ability to effectively execute mine-hunting missions with the REMUS vehicle through the fusion of its CAD/CAC algorithm with several other CAD/CAC algorithms to achieve low false alarm rates while maintaining a high probability of correct detection/classification. Mine-hunting in the very shallow water (VSW) environment poses a host of difficulties including such issues as: a higher incidence of man made clutter, significant interference due to biological sources (such as kelp or silt), the scouring of mines into the bottom, interference from surface/bottom bounce, and image distortion due to vehicle motion during image generation. These issues coupled with highly variable bottom conditions and small bottom targets make reliable hunting in the VSW environment very difficult. In order to be operationally viable, the individual CAD/CAC algorithms must demonstrate robustness over these very different mine-hunting environments. A higher normalized false alarm rate per algorithm is considered acceptable based on the false alarm reduction achieved through multi-algorithm fusion. Raytheon's recent CAD/CAC algorithm enhancements demonstrate a significant improvement in overall CAD/CAC performance across a diverse set of environments, from the relatively benign Gulf of Mexico environment to the more challenging areas off the coast of southern California containing significant biological and bottom clutter. The improvements are attributed to incorporating an image normalizer into the algorithm's pre-processing stage in conjunction with several other modifications. The algorithm enhancements resulted in an 11% increase in overall

  17. Behavioral economics.

    PubMed

    Chambers, David W

    2009-01-01

    It is human nature to overestimate how rational we are, both in general and even when we are trying to be. Such irrationality is not random, and the search for and explanation of patterns of fuzzy thinking is the basis for a new academic discipline known as behavioral economics. Examples are given of some of the best understood of our foibles, including prospect theory, framing, anchoring, salience, confirmation bias, superstition, and ownership. Humans have two cognitive systems: one conscious, deliberate, slow, and rational; the other fast, pattern-based, emotionally tinged, and intuitive. Each is subject to its own kind of error. In the case of rational thought, we tend to exaggerate our capacity; for intuition, we fail to train it or recognize contexts where it is inappropriate. Humans are especially poor at estimating probabilities, or even understanding what they are. It is a common human failing to reason backwards from random outcomes that are favorable to beliefs about our power to predict the future. Five suggestions are offered for thinking within our means.

  18. Outlook for Soviet economic reform

    SciTech Connect

    Zycher, B.

    1990-12-01

    The central goal of the essay is presentation of the reasons for pessimism about the prospects for Soviet economic improvement in the short and medium terms. It first discusses some necessary conditions for real long-term growth in any economy; experience suggests that these underlying foundations will be difficult to attain in the Soviet context. Second, it turns to the short- and medium-term outlook for Soviet economic performance even if all the necessary policy changes and economic institutions were adopted. And, finally it addresses the Gorbachev reform program; this plan illustrates quite neatly the adverse constraints imposed by the past and the poor prospects for the future.

  19. 48 CFR 970.5226-1 - Diversity plan.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ..., (4) subcontracting, (5) economic development (including technology transfer), and (6) the prevention... and Operating Contracts 970.5226-1 Diversity plan. As prescribed in 48 CFR 970.2671-2, insert...

  20. Economic Evaluation of Environmental Health Interventions to Support Decision Making

    PubMed Central

    Hutton, Guy

    2008-01-01

    Environmental burden of disease represents one quarter of overall disease burden, hence necessitating greater attention from decision makers both inside and outside the health sector. Economic evaluation techniques such as cost-effectiveness analysis and cost-benefit analysis provide key information to health decision makers on the efficiency of environmental health interventions, assisting them in choosing interventions which give the greatest social return on limited public budgets and private resources. The aim of this article is to review economic evaluation studies in three environmental health areas—water, sanitation, hygiene (WSH), vector control, and air pollution—and to critically examine the policy relevance and scientific quality of the studies for selecting and funding public programmers. A keyword search of Medline from 1990–2008 revealed 32 studies, and gathering of articles from other sources revealed a further 18 studies, giving a total of 50 economic evaluation studies (13 WSH interventions, 16 vector control and 21 air pollution). Overall, the economic evidence base on environmental health interventions remains relatively weak—too few studies per intervention, of variable scientific quality and from diverse locations which limits generalisability of findings. Importantly, there still exists a disconnect between economic research, decision making and programmer implementation. This can be explained by the lack of translation of research findings into accessible documentation for policy makers and limited relevance of research findings, and the often low importance of economic evidence in budgeting decisions. These findings underline the importance of involving policy makers in the defining of research agendas and commissioning of research, and improving the awareness of researchers of the policy environment into which their research feeds. PMID:21572840

  1. The Improving Economic Status of Black Americans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, James P.

    The major explanations for the narrowing in wage differentials between blacks and whites can be placed under four general categories: (1) more recent black cohorts begin their job experiences with larger initial stocks of human capital than previous cohorts; (2) the rural South to urban North migration has partly been superceded by Southern blacks…

  2. [Economic evaluation studies in health].

    PubMed

    Rovira-Forns, Joan; Antoñanzas-Villar, Fernando

    2005-12-01

    Clinical journals often publish economic evaluation studies of health technologies and programs. To improve the peer review process and, hence, the quality and validity of published studies, the British Medical Journal (BMJ) established publication guidelines for the publication of economic evaluations aimed at authors, reviewers and editors. The present article analyzes the opportunity of adopting the BMJ's or similar guidelines by Medicina Clínica and the probable effectiveness of this measure. The article concludes that although this initiative would probably improve the review process and the quality of the papers published, it might be worthwhile to review, up-date and adapt the BMJ guidelines to the Spanish context by means of a consensus-forming process. Finally, this article discusses the limitations of the peer review process in improving the quality and validity of economic evaluations and suggests some complementary measures, drawing on lessons and experiences from the field of clinical research.

  3. Genetic Diversity and Molecular Evolution of Chinese Waxy Maize Germplasm

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Hongjian; Wang, Hui; Yang, Hua; Wu, Jinhong; Shi, Biao; Cai, Run; Xu, Yunbi; Wu, Aizhong; Luo, Lijun

    2013-01-01

    Waxy maize (Zea mays L. var. certaina Kulesh), with many excellent characters in terms of starch composition and economic value, has grown in China for a long history and its production has increased dramatically in recent decades. However, the evolution and origin of waxy maize still remains unclear. We studied the genetic diversity of Chinese waxy maize including typical landraces and inbred lines by SSR analysis and the results showed a wide genetic diversity in the Chinese waxy maize germplasm. We analyzed the origin and evolution of waxy maize by sequencing 108 samples, and downloading 52 sequences from GenBank for the waxy locus in a number of accessions from genus Zea. A sharp reduction of nucleotide diversity and significant neutrality tests (Tajima’s D and Fu and Li’s F*) were observed at the waxy locus in Chinese waxy maize but not in nonglutinous maize. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that Chinese waxy maize originated from the cultivated flint maize and most of the modern waxy maize inbred lines showed a distinct independent origin and evolution process compared with the germplasm from Southwest China. The results indicated that an agronomic trait can be quickly improved to meet production demand by selection. PMID:23818949

  4. 13 CFR 303.7 - Requirements for Comprehensive Economic Development Strategies.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE PLANNING INVESTMENTS AND COMPREHENSIVE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES... economic development planning process, developed with broad-based and diverse public and private sector... of performance measures used to evaluate the Planning Organization's successful development...

  5. Economic development partnerships

    SciTech Connect

    Nikkila, N.

    1994-12-31

    The economy and the environment are inextricably linked. Neither one can be concentrated on to the total exclusion of the other. When the economy declines, so does public and private support for aggressive clean air measures. So a healthy economy is a necessary partner for a healthful environment. California is going through tough economic times and, in the future, when things have improved, the South Coast Air Quality Management District wants to be able to look back and say it pitched in and did its share to help in the recovery. The author gives a few examples of what it has done and what it is doing.

  6. Analysis of population structure and genetic diversity of Egyptian and exotic rice (Oryza sativa L.) genotypes.

    PubMed

    Salem, Khaled F M; Sallam, Ahmed

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the population structure and genetic diversity is a very important goal to improve the economic value of crops. In rice, a loss of genetic diversity in the last few centuries is observed. To address this challenge, a set of 22 lines from three different regions - India (two), and Philippines (six), and Egypt (14) - were used to assess the genetic diversity and the features of population structure. These genotypes were analyzed using 106 SSR alleles that showed a clear polymorphism among the lines. Genetic diversity was estimated based on the number of different alleles, polymorphism information content (PIC), and gene diversity. A total of 106 SSR alleles was identified from the 23 SSR loci and used to study the population structure and carry out a cluster analysis. All SSR loci showed a wide range of the number of different alleles extended from two (one loci) to seven alleles (three loci). Five and eight loci showed high PIC and gene diversity (≥0.70), respectively. The results of population structure are in agreement with cluster analysis results. Both analyses revealed two different subpopulations (G1 and G2) with different genetic properties in number of private alleles, number of different alleles (Na), number of effective alleles (Ne), expected heterozygosity (He), and Shannon's Information Index (SII). Our findings indicate that five SSR loci (RM 111, RM 307, RM 22, RM 19, and RM 271) could be used in breeding programs to enhance the marker-assisted selection through QTL mapping and association studies. A high genetic diversity found between genotypes which can be exploited to improve and produce rice cultivars for important traits (e.g. high agronomic features and tolerance to biotic or/and abiotic stresses).

  7. Preparing the Future STEM Workforce for Diverse Environments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Daily, Shaundra Bryant; Eugene, Wanda

    2013-01-01

    Following the belief that diversity breeds innovation in scientific endeavors, there is a national push for more diversity in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) workforce in order to maintain national economic competitiveness. Currently, STEM-related employment is only 28% non-White; however, greater efforts to recruit…

  8. Enhancing Diversity in Vocational Education. Information Series No. 351.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bowen, Blannie E.; Jackson, Gary B.

    Vocational education can play a significant role in achieving the ideals of a diverse society. Although workplace changes and global economics make vocational education essential, an increasingly diverse population includes groups that have not traditionally participated extensively in vocational education. Philosophical and attitudinal changes…

  9. Constructing and Protecting Identity in a Diverse Higher Education Context

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jaspal, Rusi

    2015-01-01

    UK higher education (HE) has become increasingly diverse. Despite the clear social, economic and pedagogical benefits of diversity, it can also be challenging for identity as it may bring about psychological change and compel both the "dominant majority" and "minorities" to adjust to the presence, identities and worldviews of…

  10. Policies and Practices of Diversity: Reimagining Possibilities for New Discourses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Infante, Marta D.; Matus, Claudia

    2009-01-01

    The processes of globalization have demanded that emergent countries include issues of diversity into their political, economic and educational agendas. Consequently, educational institutions have started, in order to ascribe to requests made by transnational organizations (UNESCO, the World Bank and OECD), to include diversity as a priority to…

  11. Capturing the Diversity in Lexical Diversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jarvis, Scott

    2013-01-01

    The range, variety, or diversity of words found in learners' language use is believed to reflect the complexity of their vocabulary knowledge as well as the level of their language proficiency. Many indices of lexical diversity have been proposed, most of which involve statistical relationships between types and tokens, and which ultimately…

  12. Diversity Statements: How Faculty Applicants Address Diversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schmaling, Karen B.; Trevino, Amira Y.; Lind, Justin R.; Blume, Arthur W.; Baker, Dana L.

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to examine application materials for assistant professor positions in 3 academic disciplines. Applicants were asked to write a diversity statement describing how they would advance diversity through their research, teaching, and service. The sample included application materials submitted by 191 candidates for…

  13. Does Staff Diversity Imply Openness to Diversity?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lauring, Jakob; Selmer, Jan

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: Post-secondary educational organizations are currently some of the most diverse settings to be found. However, few educational studies have dealt with staff diversity and hardly any has looked outside the USA. The purpose of this paper is to present a study of members of international university departments in Denmark. The authors set out…

  14. Two essays in environmental economics: An optimal control approach to cross-media variation in the behavior and effects of pollution, and Exploring the determinants of air quality improvements: An empirical study of trends in particulates

    SciTech Connect

    Eiswerth, M.E.

    1988-01-01

    The first essay addresses the problem that society confronts in determining optimal methods of disposing of pollutants. The choice of disposal strategy for any given pollutant often determines the environmental medium into which the pollutant is released. In turn, choice of medium may influence both the persistence of the pollutant and the effects that it has on human health. Because the choice of technology has intertemporal implications, an optimal-control model of the problem of allocating a pollutant between two different disposal methods is formulated and characterized. The second essay presents an empirical test of several hypotheses concerning the determinants of changes in US air quality since the late 1960s. These hypotheses are: (1) incentives established by federal clean air legislation have provided a significant impetus to improvements in air quality; (2) trends in the levels of industrial activities, not caused by federal legislation, have led to declines in pollution; and (3) differences across jurisdictions in socio-economic characteristics and unionization have influenced variations in local trends. Cross-section regression analysis was performed on trends in particulate levels at specific air monitoring sites for two time periods: 1967-77 and 1977-82.

  15. Scaling and universality in urban economic diversification.

    PubMed

    Youn, Hyejin; Bettencourt, Luís M A; Lobo, José; Strumsky, Deborah; Samaniego, Horacio; West, Geoffrey B

    2016-01-01

    Understanding cities is central to addressing major global challenges from climate change to economic resilience. Although increasingly perceived as fundamental socio-economic units, the detailed fabric of urban economic activities is only recently accessible to comprehensive analyses with the availability of large datasets. Here, we study abundances of business categories across US metropolitan statistical areas, and provide a framework for measuring the intrinsic diversity of economic activities that transcends scales of the classification scheme. A universal structure common to all cities is revealed, manifesting self-similarity in internal economic structure as well as aggregated metrics (GDP, patents, crime). We present a simple mathematical derivation of the universality, and provide a model, together with its economic implications of open-ended diversity created by urbanization, for understanding the observed empirical distribution. Given the universal distribution, scaling analyses for individual business categories enable us to determine their relative abundances as a function of city size. These results shed light on the processes of economic differentiation with scale, suggesting a general structure for the growth of national economies as integrated urban systems. PMID:26790997

  16. Scaling and universality in urban economic diversification.

    PubMed

    Youn, Hyejin; Bettencourt, Luís M A; Lobo, José; Strumsky, Deborah; Samaniego, Horacio; West, Geoffrey B

    2016-01-01

    Understanding cities is central to addressing major global challenges from climate change to economic resilience. Although increasingly perceived as fundamental socio-economic units, the detailed fabric of urban economic activities is only recently accessible to comprehensive analyses with the availability of large datasets. Here, we study abundances of business categories across US metropolitan statistical areas, and provide a framework for measuring the intrinsic diversity of economic activities that transcends scales of the classification scheme. A universal structure common to all cities is revealed, manifesting self-similarity in internal economic structure as well as aggregated metrics (GDP, patents, crime). We present a simple mathematical derivation of the universality, and provide a model, together with its economic implications of open-ended diversity created by urbanization, for understanding the observed empirical distribution. Given the universal distribution, scaling analyses for individual business categories enable us to determine their relative abundances as a function of city size. These results shed light on the processes of economic differentiation with scale, suggesting a general structure for the growth of national economies as integrated urban systems.

  17. Scaling and universality in urban economic diversification

    PubMed Central

    Bettencourt, Luís M. A.; Lobo, José; Strumsky, Deborah; Samaniego, Horacio; West, Geoffrey B.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding cities is central to addressing major global challenges from climate change to economic resilience. Although increasingly perceived as fundamental socio-economic units, the detailed fabric of urban economic activities is only recently accessible to comprehensive analyses with the availability of large datasets. Here, we study abundances of business categories across US metropolitan statistical areas, and provide a framework for measuring the intrinsic diversity of economic activities that transcends scales of the classification scheme. A universal structure common to all cities is revealed, manifesting self-similarity in internal economic structure as well as aggregated metrics (GDP, patents, crime). We present a simple mathematical derivation of the universality, and provide a model, together with its economic implications of open-ended diversity created by urbanization, for understanding the observed empirical distribution. Given the universal distribution, scaling analyses for individual business categories enable us to determine their relative abundances as a function of city size. These results shed light on the processes of economic differentiation with scale, suggesting a general structure for the growth of national economies as integrated urban systems. PMID:26790997

  18. A Systematic Review of the Economic Evaluation of Telemedicine in Japan

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Objectives: There is no systematic review on economic evaluations of telemedicine in Japan, despite over 1000 trials implemented. Our systematic review aims to examine whether Japan’s telemedicine is cost-saving or cost-effective, examine the methodological rigorousness of the economic evaluations, and discuss future studies needed to improve telemedicine’s financial sustainability. Methods: We searched five databases, including two Japanese databases, to find peer-reviewed articles published between January 1, 2000 and December 31, 2014 in English and Japanese that performed economic evaluations of Japan’s telemedicine programs. The methodological rigorousness of the economic analyses was assessed with a well-established checklist. We calculated the benefit-to-cost ratio (BCR) when a reviewed study reported related data but did not report the BCR. All cost values were adjusted to 2014 US dollars. Results: Among the 17 articles identified, six studies reported on settings connecting physicians for specialist consultations, and eleven studies on settings connecting healthcare providers and patients at home. There are three cost-benefit analyses and three cost-minimization analyses. The remaining studies measured the benefit of telemedicine only, using medical expenditure saved or users’ willingness-to-pay. There was substantial diversity in the methodological rigorousness. Studies on teledermatology and teleradiology indicated a favorable level of economic efficiency. Studies on telehomecare gave mixed results. One cost-benefit analysis on telehomecare indicated a low economic efficiency, partly due to public subsidy rules, e.g., a too short budget period. Conclusions: Overall, telemedicine programs in Japan were indicated to have a favorable level of economic efficiency. However, the scarcity of the economic literature indicates the need for further rigorous economic evaluation studies. PMID:27499161

  19. Unity in Diversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Purves, Alan C.

    The cultural diversities of peoples and dialects in the United States have brought a richness to the English language that has made it one of the most supple of all the languages in the world. In addition to the diversity in the language are the diversities in literature, technology, nationality, politics, and styles of teaching. Teachers of…

  20. Multilevel and Diverse Classrooms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baurain, Bradley, Ed.; Ha, Phan Le, Ed.

    2010-01-01

    The benefits and advantages of classroom practices incorporating unity-in-diversity and diversity-in-unity are what "Multilevel and Diverse Classrooms" is all about. Multilevel classrooms--also known as mixed-ability or heterogeneous classrooms--are a fact of life in ESOL programs around the world. These classrooms are often not only multilevel…

  1. Leadership and Diversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coleman, Marianne

    2012-01-01

    As part of the special edition recognizing the 40th anniversary of "Educational Management Administration & Leadership" this article reviews the coverage of leadership and diversity issues in the journal. The majority of articles concerning diversity have focused on gender, with attention turning to the wider concept of diversity since the year…

  2. Managing Generational Diversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Donovan, Eamonn

    2009-01-01

    Many school leaders have explored the issue of diversity when it comes to students, teachers and staff. Their focus typically has been on gender and ethnicity. However, generational diversity, an area of diversity that warrants serious consideration, has received less attention. Generational intelligence is important today for two reasons. First…

  3. Insights on Diversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bloom, Carol, Ed.; And Others

    This state-of-the-art report presents a series of essays on the topic of diversity. Essays include: (1) "Committing to Diversity" (George L. Mehaffy); (2) "Serving the Community by Serving Our Members" (Michael P. Wolfe); (3) "How Diversity Matters" (Asa G. Hilliard, III); (4) "A Prerequisite to Teaching Multiculturally" (Mary Louise Gomez); (5)…

  4. BioDiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, E. O., Ed.; Peter, Frances M., Ed.

    The diversity of life forms is one of the greatest wonders of the planet earth. The biosphere is an intricate tapestry of interwoven life forms. This book offers an overall view of this biological diversity and carries an urgent warning about the rapid alteration and destruction of the environments that have fostered the diversity of life forms…

  5. Lessons Learned from a Multiculturally, Economically Diverse Classroom Setting.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lyman, Lawrence

    For her sabbatical a professor of teacher education at Emporia State University returned to the elementary classroom after a 20-year absence to teach in a third/fourth combination classroom in the Emporia, Kansas Public Schools. The return to elementary classroom teaching provided the professor with the opportunity to utilize some of the social…

  6. ENERGY FLOW DIVERSITY AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. (R828009)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  7. Economic Conditions of Military Families

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hosek, James; MacDermid Wadsworth, Shelley

    2013-01-01

    In this article, the authors found that the economic circumstances of military families are good, certainly much improved compared with even a decade ago. The military context is nonetheless challenging, with long hours, dangerous work, frequent transfers, and stressful absences during deployment. Service members receive relatively high pay and…

  8. Higher Education and Economic Growth.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosenzweig, Robert M.

    1990-01-01

    To sustain economic growth, the United States needs investment in university research, sensible national fiscal policies, vigorous exploitation by industry of the science available, and an investment in teaching. An improved and enlarged teacher trainee pool, sustained support, and foreign languages and international studies will be crucial…

  9. Genetic Diversity and Societally Important Disparities

    PubMed Central

    Rosenberg, Noah A.; Kang, Jonathan T. L.

    2015-01-01

    The magnitude of genetic diversity within human populations varies in a way that reflects the sequence of migrations by which people spread throughout the world. Beyond its use in human evolutionary genetics, worldwide variation in genetic diversity sometimes can interact with social processes to produce differences among populations in their relationship to modern societal problems. We review the consequences of genetic diversity differences in the settings of familial identification in forensic genetic testing, match probabilities in bone marrow transplantation, and representation in genome-wide association studies of disease. In each of these three cases, the contribution of genetic diversity to social differences follows from population-genetic principles. For a fourth setting that is not similarly grounded, we reanalyze with expanded genetic data a report that genetic diversity differences influence global patterns of human economic development, finding no support for the claim. The four examples describe a limit to the importance of genetic diversity for explaining societal differences while illustrating a distinction that certain biologically based scenarios do require consideration of genetic diversity for solving problems to which populations have been differentially predisposed by the unique history of human migrations. PMID:26354973

  10. Genetic Diversity and Societally Important Disparities.

    PubMed

    Rosenberg, Noah A; Kang, Jonathan T L

    2015-09-01

    The magnitude of genetic diversity within human populations varies in a way that reflects the sequence of migrations by which people spread throughout the world. Beyond its use in human evolutionary genetics, worldwide variation in genetic diversity sometimes can interact with social processes to produce differences among populations in their relationship to modern societal problems. We review the consequences of genetic diversity differences in the settings of familial identification in forensic genetic testing, match probabilities in bone marrow transplantation, and representation in genome-wide association studies of disease. In each of these three cases, the contribution of genetic diversity to social differences follows from population-genetic principles. For a fourth setting that is not similarly grounded, we reanalyze with expanded genetic data a report that genetic diversity differences influence global patterns of human economic development, finding no support for the claim. The four examples describe a limit to the importance of genetic diversity for explaining societal differences while illustrating a distinction that certain biologically based scenarios do require consideration of genetic diversity for solving problems to which populations have been differentially predisposed by the unique history of human migrations.

  11. Effects of Problem Based Economics on High School Economics Instruction. Final Report. NCEE 2010-4022rev

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Finkelstein, Neal; Hanson, Thomas; Huang, Chun-Wei; Hirschman, Becca; Huang, Min

    2011-01-01

    This study examines whether the Problem Based Economics curriculum developed by the Buck Institute for Education improves grade 12 students' content knowledge as measured by the Test of Economic Literacy, a test refined by the National Council on Economic Education (NCEE) over decades. Students' problem-solving skills in economics were also…

  12. Work group diversity.

    PubMed

    van Knippenberg, Daan; Schippers, Michaéla C

    2007-01-01

    Work group diversity, the degree to which there are differences between group members, may affect group process and performance positively as well as negatively. Much is still unclear about the effects of diversity, however. We review the 1997-2005 literature on work group diversity to assess the state of the art and to identify key issues for future research. This review points to the need for more complex conceptualizations of diversity, as well as to the need for more empirical attention to the processes that are assumed to underlie the effects of diversity on group process and performance and to the contingency factors of these processes.

  13. Work group diversity.

    PubMed

    van Knippenberg, Daan; Schippers, Michaéla C

    2007-01-01

    Work group diversity, the degree to which there are differences between group members, may affect group process and performance positively as well as negatively. Much is still unclear about the effects of diversity, however. We review the 1997-2005 literature on work group diversity to assess the state of the art and to identify key issues for future research. This review points to the need for more complex conceptualizations of diversity, as well as to the need for more empirical attention to the processes that are assumed to underlie the effects of diversity on group process and performance and to the contingency factors of these processes. PMID:16903805

  14. Economic hardship associated with managing chronic illness: a qualitative inquiry

    PubMed Central

    Jeon, Yun-Hee; Essue, Beverley; Jan, Stephen; Wells, Robert; Whitworth, Judith A

    2009-01-01

    Background Chronic illness and disability can have damaging, even catastrophic, socioeconomic effects on individuals and their households. We examined the experiences of people affected by chronic heart failure, complicated diabetes and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease to inform patient centred policy development. This paper provides a first level, qualitative understanding of the economic impact of chronic illness. Methods Interviews were conducted with patients aged between 45 and 85 years who had one or more of the index conditions and family carers from the Australian Capital Territory and Western Sydney, Australia (n = 66). Content analysis guided the interpretation of data. Results The affordability of medical treatments and care required to manage illness were identified as the key aspects of economic hardship, which compromised patients' capacity to proactively engage in self-management and risk reduction behaviours. Factors exacerbating hardship included ineligibility for government support, co-morbidity, health service flexibility, and health literacy. Participants who were on multiple medications, from culturally and linguistically diverse or Indigenous backgrounds, and/or not in paid employment, experienced economic hardship more harshly and their management of chronic illness was jeopardised as a consequence. Economic hardship was felt among not only those ineligible for government financial supports but also those receiving subsidies that were insufficient to meet the costs of managing long-term illness over and above necessary daily living expenses. Conclusion This research provides insights into the economic stressors associated with managing chronic illness, demonstrating that economic hardship requires households to make difficult decisions between care and basic living expenses. These decisions may cause less than optimal health outcomes and increased costs to the health system. The findings support the necessity of a critical analysis of

  15. Application of reservoir characterization and advanced technology to improve recovery and economics in a lower quality shallow shelf San Andres reservoir. Quarterly progress report, October 1--December 31, 1997

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor, A.R.; Hickman, T.S.; Justice, J.J.

    1998-01-31

    West Welch Unit is one of four large waterflood units in the Welch Field in the northwestern portion of Dawson County, Texas. The Welch Field produces oil under a solution gas drive mechanism from the San Andres formation at approximately 4,800 ft. The field has been under waterflood for 30 years and a significant portion has been infill-drilled on 20-ac density. A 1982--86 pilot CO{sub 2} injection project in the offsetting South Welch Unit yielded positive results. Recent installation of a CO{sub 2} pipeline near the field allowed the phased development of a miscible CO{sub 2} injection project at the South Welch Unit. The Class 2 Project at West Welch was designed to demonstrate the use of advanced technologies to enhance the economics of improved oil recovery (IOR) projects in lower quality Shallow Shelf Carbonate (SSC) reservoirs, resulting in recovery of additional oil that would otherwise be left in the reservoir at project abandonment. Accurate reservoir description is critical to the effective evaluation and efficient design of IOR projects in the heterogeneous SSC reservoirs. Therefore, the majority of Budget Period 1 was devoted to reservoir characterization. Technologies being demonstrated include: advanced petrophysics; three-dimensional seismic; cross-well bore tomography; advanced reservoir simulation; CO{sub 2} stimulation treatments; hydraulic fracturing design and monitoring; and mobility control agents. During the quarter, development of the project`s south expansion area was undertaken, work was continued on interpreting the crosswell seismic data and CO{sub 2} injection into 11 wells was initiated.

  16. Diversity imaging techniques in lidar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schultz, K. I.

    1992-01-01

    Diversity imaging techniques have been successfully employed in conventional microwave range-Doppler imaging radars to obtain high resolution images of both natural and man-made targets. These techniques allow microwave radars to achieve image resolution which would otherwise require excessively large antennas. Recent advances in coherent laser radar techniques and signal processing have led to the development of range-Doppler imaging laser radars. While much of the theory and signal processing techniques used in microwave radars can be brought to bear on laser radars, the significant difference in wavelength results in issues peculiar to laser radar systems. Both the fundamental concepts and specific applications of diversity imaging techniques applied to laser radar imaging systems will be discussed. Angle, frequency, and bistatic angle degrees of freedom can be employed in a coherent laser radar imaging system to achieve image resolution which exceeds the traditional Rayleigh criterion associated with the receive aperture. In diversity imaging, angle and frequency degrees of freedom can be used to synthesize an effective aperture providing range and Doppler target information. The ability to vary the bistatic angle provides an additional means of synthesizing an effective aperture. Both simulated and experimentally obtained laser radar images of spinning and/or tumbling objects utilizing both angular and frequency diversity will be presented. In coherent laser radar systems, image quality can be dominated by laser speckle effects. In particular, the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of a coherent laser radar image is at most unity in the presence of fully developed speckle. Diversity techniques can be utilized to improve the image SNR; simple incoherent averaging of images utilizing temporal and polarization degrees of freedom can significantly improve image SNR. Both the SNR and image resolution (as defined by the synthetic aperture) contribute to image quality. The

  17. Stakeholder views regarding cultural diversity teaching outcomes: a qualitative study

    PubMed Central

    Dogra, Nisha; Carter-Pokras, Olivia

    2005-01-01

    Background Cultural diversity teaching is increasingly present in both undergraduate and postgraduate training programmes. This study explored the views of stakeholders in medical education about the potential outcomes of cultural diversity teaching and how they thought cultural diversity programmes might be effectively evaluated. Methods A semi-structured interview was undertaken with 61 stakeholders (including policymakers, diversity teachers, students and users). The data were analysed and themes identified. Results Many participants felt that clinical practice was improved through 'cultural diversity teaching' and this was mostly as a result of improved doctor-patient communication. There was a strong view that service users need to participate in the evaluation of outcomes of cultural diversity teaching. Conclusion There is a general perception, rather than clear evidence, that cultural diversity teaching can have a positive effect on clinical practice. Cultural diversity teaching needs to be reviewed in undergraduate and postgraduate medicine and better evaluation tools need to be established. PMID:16259640

  18. Primer on Social Economics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Darcy, Robert L.

    An elaboration of the author's booklet entitled "First Steps Toward Economic Understanding," this primer is designed to help the reader develop a functional understanding of the economic process so that he can make wiser decisions on issues of social policy and on matters affecting his economic well-being. The document is not "economics in one…

  19. Competition in Economic Theory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Livesey, F.

    1982-01-01

    Considers two alternative views of competition found in the economics literature. The author demonstrates that these alternative views of competition underlie alternative views in other areas of economics, including welfare economics and micro-economic policy. Implications for college students and teachers are examined. (Author/AM)

  20. Engaging Undergraduates in Economics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gajwani, Kiran; Miron, Jeffrey

    2015-01-01

    Siegfried and Stock (2007) explore the undergraduate training of PhD economists. Their findings show that among U.S. undergraduate economics programs, the Harvard University Economics Department produces many eventual economics PhD recipients. In this article, the authors discuss Harvard's undergraduate economics program and highlight some key…