|Commenced in January 1999||Frequency: Monthly||Edition: International||Paper Count: 315|
Infrastructure assets are essential in urban cities; their purpose is to facilitate the public needs. As a result, their conditions and states shall always be monitored to avoid any sudden malfunction. Sewer systems, one of the assets, are an essential part of the underground infrastructure as they transfer sewer medium to designated areas. However, their conditions are subject to deterioration due to ageing. Therefore, it is of great significance to assess the conditions of pipelines to avoid sudden collapses. Current practices of sewer pipeline assessment rely on industrial protocols that consider distinct defects and grades to conclude the limited average or peak score of the assessed assets. This research aims to enhance the evaluation by integrating the Quality Function Deployment (QFD) and the Decision-Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory (DEMATEL) methods in assessing the condition of sewer pipelines. The methodology shall study the cause and effect relationship of the systems’ defects to deduce the relative influence weights of each defect. Subsequently, the overall grade is calculated by aggregating the WHAT’s and HOW’s of the House of Quality (HOQ) using the computed relative weights. Thus, this study shall enhance the evaluation of the assets to conclude informative rehabilitation and maintenance plans for decision makers.
The paper reviews design and implementation of a Calculus Course required for the Biomedical Competency Based Program developed as a joint project between The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, and the University of Texas’ Institute for Transformational Learning, from the theoretical perspective as presented in scholarly work on active learning, formative assessment, and on-line teaching. Following a four stage curriculum development process (objective, content, delivery, and assessment), and theoretical recommendations that guarantee effectiveness and efficiency of assessment in active learning, we discuss the practical recommendations on how to incorporate a strong formative assessment component to address disciplines’ needs, and students’ major needs. In design and implementation of this project, we used Constructivism and Stage-by-Stage Development of Mental Actions Theory recommendations.
In a parliamentary system, party discipline is the impulse; when it falls short, the government usually falls. Conceivably, the platform of Indian politics suffers with innumerous practical disorders. The politics of defection is one such specie entailing gross miscarriage of fair conduct turning politics into a game of thrones (powers). This practice of political nomaditude can trace its seed in the womb of British House of Commons. Therein, if a legislator was found to cross the floor, the party considered him disloyal. In other words, the legislator lost his allegiance to his former party by joining another party. This very phenomenon, in practice has a two way traffic i.e. ruling party to the opposition party or vice versa. The democracies like USA, Australia and Canada were also aware of this fashion of swapping loyalties. There have been several instances of great politicians changing party allegiance, for example Winston Churchill, Ramsay McDonald, William Gladstone etc. Nevertheless, it is interesting to cite that irrespective of such practice of changing party allegiance, none of the democracies in the west ever desired or felt the need to legislatively ban defections. But, exceptionally India can be traced to have passed anti-defection laws. The politics of defection had been a unique popular phenomenon on the floor of Indian Parliamentary system gradually gulping the democratic essence and synchronization of the Federation. This study is both analytical and doctrinal, which tries to examine whether representative democracy has lost its essence due to political nomadism. The present study also analyzes the classical as well as contemporary pulse of floor crossing amidst dynastic politics in a representative democracy. It will briefly discuss the panorama of defections under the Indian federal structure in the light of the anti-defection law and an attempt has been made to add valuable suggestions to streamline remedy for the still prevalent political defections.
By giving personal opinions, suggestions and criticism through e-democracy, young people can reinforce the adoption of decisions which they have an impact on. The purpose of this research was to examine the opinion of university students about the possibility of their decision-making by using information and communication technology (ICT). The questionnaire examined young people's values and behaviour associated with e-democracy and the related decision-making. Students are most active online when it comes to finding information connected with their academic responsibilities, but less frequently take part in democratic processes in society, both at the national and local level. E-democracy as a tool can be learned in programmes of Human Rights Education and Citizenship Education.
In 2017, many signs of populism occurred around the world. This paper suggests that populism is not a sudden phenomenon, but a manifestation of common people’s will. By analyzing previous research, this paper proposes three factors related to populism: Inequality, experience of economic crisis, and rapid cultural change. With these three elements, four cases will be investigated in this article; two countries experienced populism, and the other two countries did not experience it. Comparing four cases by using three elements will give a fruitful foundation for further analysis regarding populism. In sum, aforementioned three elements are highly related to the occurrence of populism. However, there is one hidden factor: dissatisfaction with established politics. Thus, populism is not a temporal phenomenon. It is a red alert for democratic crisis.
This paper analyses the various benefits and barriers of residential deconstruction in the context of environmental performance and circular economy based on a case study project in Christchurch, New Zealand. The case study project “Whole House Deconstruction” which aimed, firstly, to harvest materials from a residential house, secondly, to produce new products using the recovered materials, and thirdly, to organize an exhibition for the local public to promote awareness on resource conservation and sustainable deconstruction practices. Through a systematic deconstruction process, the project recovered around 12 tonnes of various construction materials, most of which would otherwise be disposed of to landfill in the traditional demolition approach. It is estimated that the deconstruction of a similar residential house could potentially prevent around 27,029 kg of carbon emission to the atmosphere by recovering and reusing the building materials. In addition, the project involved local designers to produce 400 artefacts using the recovered materials and to exhibit them to accelerate public awareness. The findings from this study suggest that the deconstruction project has significant environmental benefits, as well as social benefits by involving the local community and unemployed youth as a part of their professional skills development opportunities. However, the project faced a number of economic and institutional challenges. The study concludes that with proper economic models and appropriate institutional support a significant amount of construction and demolition waste can be reduced through a systematic deconstruction process. Traditionally, the greatest benefits from such projects are often ignored and remain unreported to wider audiences as most of the external and environmental costs have not been considered in the traditional linear economy.
With numerous advantages of ICT in teaching such as using images to improve the retentive memory of students, academic staff is yet to deliver instructions adequately and effectively due to no power supply, lack of technical supports and non-availability of functional ICT tools. This study was conducted to investigate the attitudes of academic staff towards the use of information communication technology as a pedagogical tool for effective teaching in FCT College of Education, Zuba-Abuja, Nigeria. A sample of 200 academic staff from five schools/faculties was involved in the study. The respondents were selected by using simple random sampling technique (SRST). A questionnaire was developed and validated by the experts in Measurement and Evaluation, and reliability co-efficient of 0.85 was obtained. It was used to gather relevant data from the respondents. This study revealed that the respondents had positive attitudes towards the use of ICT as a pedagogical tool for effective teaching. Also, the uses of ICT by the academic staff included: to encourage closer relationship for attainment of higher academic, and to deliver instructions effectively. The study also revealed that there is a significant relationship between the attitudes and the uses of ICT by the academic staff. Based on these findings, some recommendations were made which include: power supply should be provided to operate ICT facilities for effective teaching, and technical assistance on ICT usage for effective delivery of instructions should be provided among other recommendations.
The success or failure of students is a concern for every academic institution, college, university, governments and students themselves. Several approaches have been researched to address this concern. In this paper, a view is held that when a student enters a university or college or an academic institution, he or she enters an academic environment. The academic environment is unique concept used to develop the solution for making predictions effectively. This paper presents a model to determine the propensity of a student to succeed or fail in the French South African Schneider Electric Education Center (FSASEC) at the Vaal University of Technology (VUT). The Decision Tree algorithm is used to implement the model at FSASEC.
Surface elevation dynamics have always responded to disturbance regimes. Creating Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) to detect surface dynamics has led to the development of several methods, devices and data clouds. DEMs can provide accurate and quick results with cost efficiency, in comparison to the inherited geomatics survey techniques. Nowadays, remote sensing datasets have become a primary source to create DEMs, including LiDAR point clouds with GIS analytic tools. However, these data need to be tested for error detection and correction. This paper evaluates various DEMs from different data sources over time for Apple Orchard Island, a coastal site in southeastern Australia, in order to detect surface dynamics. Subsequently, 30 chosen locations were examined in the field to test the error of the DEMs surface detection using high resolution global positioning systems (GPSs). Results show significant surface elevation changes on Apple Orchard Island. Accretion occurred on most of the island while surface elevation loss due to erosion is limited to the northern and southern parts. Concurrently, the projected differential correction and validation method aimed to identify errors in the dataset. The resultant DEMs demonstrated a small error ratio (≤ 3%) from the gathered datasets when compared with the fieldwork survey using RTK-GPS. As modern modelling approaches need to become more effective and accurate, applying several tools to create different DEMs on a multi-temporal scale would allow easy predictions in time-cost-frames with more comprehensive coverage and greater accuracy. With a DEM technique for the eco-geomorphic context, such insights about the ecosystem dynamic detection, at such a coastal intertidal system, would be valuable to assess the accuracy of the predicted eco-geomorphic risk for the conservation management sustainability. Demonstrating this framework to evaluate the historical and current anthropogenic and environmental stressors on coastal surface elevation dynamism could be profitably applied worldwide.
The impact factor was introduced to measure the quality of journals. Various impact measures exist from multiple bibliographic databases. In this research, we aim to provide a broader understanding of the relationship between scholarly impact and other characteristics of academic journals. Data used for this research were collected from Ulrich’s Periodicals Directory (Ulrichs), Cabell’s (Cabells), and SCImago Journal & Country Rank (SJR) from 1999 to 2015. A master journal dataset was consolidated via Journal Title and ISSN. We adopted a two-step analysis process to study the quantitative relationships between scholarly impact and other journal characteristics. Firstly, we conducted a correlation analysis over the data attributes, with results indicating that there are no correlations between any of the identified journal characteristics. Secondly, we examined the quantitative relationship between scholarly impact and other characteristics using quartile analysis. The results show interesting patterns, including some expected and others less anticipated. Results show that higher quartile journals publish more in both frequency and quantity, and charge more for subscription cost. Top quartile journals also have the lowest acceptance rates. Non-English journals are more likely to be categorized in lower quartiles, which are more likely to stop publishing than higher quartiles. Future work is suggested, which includes analysis of the relationship between scholars and their publications, based on the quartile ranking of journals in which they publish.
The construction industry generates large amounts of waste, usually mixed, which can be composed of different origin materials, most of them catalogued as non-hazardous. The European Union targets for this waste for 2020 have been already achieved by the UK, but it is mainly developed in downcycling processes (backfilling) whereas upcycling (such as recycle in new concrete batches) still keeps at a low percentage. The aim of this paper is to explore further in the use of recycled aggregates from construction and demolition waste (CDW) in concrete mixes so as to improve upcycling. A review of most recent research and legislation applied in the UK is developed regarding the production of concrete blocks. As a case study, initial tests were developed with a CDW recycled aggregate sample from a CDW plant in Swansea. Composition by visual inspection and sieving tests of two samples were developed and compared to original aggregates. More than 70% was formed by soil waste from excavation, and the rest was a mix of waste from mortar, concrete, and ceramics with small traces of plaster, glass and organic matter. Two concrete mixes were made with 80% replacement of recycled aggregates and different water/cement ratio. Tests were carried out for slump, absorption, density and compression strength. The results were compared to a reference sample and showed a substantial reduction of quality in both mixes. Despite that, the discussion brings to identify different aspects to solve, such as heterogeneity or composition, and analyze them for the successful use of these recycled aggregates in the production of concrete blocks. The conclusions obtained can help increase upcycling processes ratio with mixed CDW as recycled aggregates in concrete mixes.
Dependencies between diverse factors involved in probabilistic seismic loss evaluation are recognized to be an imperative issue in acquiring accurate loss estimates. Dependencies among component damage costs could be taken into account considering two partial distinct states of independent or perfectly-dependent for component damage states; however, in our best knowledge, there is no available procedure to take account of loss dependencies in story level. This paper attempts to present a method called "modal cost superposition method" for decoupling story damage costs subjected to earthquake ground motions dealt with closed form differential equations between damage cost and engineering demand parameters which should be solved in complex system considering all stories' cost equations by the means of the introduced "substituted matrixes of mass and stiffness". Costs are treated as probabilistic variables with definite statistic factors of median and standard deviation amounts and a presumed probability distribution. To supplement the proposed procedure and also to display straightforwardness of its application, one benchmark study has been conducted. Acceptable compatibility has been proven for the estimated damage costs evaluated by the new proposed modal and also frequently used stochastic approaches for entire building; however, in story level, insufficiency of employing modification factor for incorporating occurrence probability dependencies between stories has been revealed due to discrepant amounts of dependency between damage costs of different stories. Also, more dependency contribution in occurrence probability of loss could be concluded regarding more compatibility of loss results in higher stories than the lower ones, whereas reduction in incorporation portion of cost modes provides acceptable level of accuracy and gets away from time consuming calculations including some limited number of cost modes in high mode situation.
European telecommunication distribution center performance is measured by service lead time and quality. Operation model is CTO (customized to order) namely, a high mix customization of telecommunication network equipment and parts. CTO operation contains material receiving, warehousing, network and server assembly to order and configure based on customer specifications. Variety of the product and orders does not support mass production structure. One of the success factors to satisfy customer is to have a proper aggregated planning method for the operation in order to have optimized human resources and highly efficient asset utilization. Research will investigate several methods and find proper way to have an order book simulation where practical optimization problem may contain thousands of variables and the simulation running times of developed algorithms were taken into account with high importance. There are two operation research models that were developed, customer demand is given in orders, no change over time, customer demands are given for product types, and changeover time is constant.
The aim of the research is to investigate the forms of the demands of leisure tourism in a West-Hungarian industrial city, Győr. Today, Győr is still a traditional industrial city, its industry is mainly based on vehicle industry, but the role of tourism is increasing in the life of the city as well. Because of the industrial nature and the strong economy of the city, the ratio of business tourists is high. It can be stated that MICE tourism is dominating in Győr. Developments of the last decade can help the city with new tourism products to increase the leisure tourism. The new types of tourism – besides business tourism – can help the providers to increase the occupancy rates and the demand at the weekends. The research demonstrates the theoretical background of the topic, and it shows the present situation of the tourism in Győr with secondary data. The secondary research contains statistical data from the Hungarian Statistical Office and the city council, and it is based on the providers’ data. The next part of the paper shows the potential types of leisure tourism with the help of primary research. The primary research contains the results of an online questionnaire with a sample of 1000 potential customers. It is completed with 10 in-depth interviews with tourism experts, who explained their opinions about the opportunities of leisure tourism in Győr from the providers’ side. The online questionnaire was filled out in spring 2017 by customers, who have already stayed in Győr or plan to visit the city. At the same time in-depth interviews were made with hotel managers, head of touristic institutions and employees at the council. Based on the research it can be stated that the touristic supply of Győr allows the increase of the leisure tourism ratio in the city. Primarily, the cultural and health tourism show potential development, but the supply side of touristic services can be developed in order to increase the number of guest nights. The tourism marketing needs to be strengthened in the city, and a distinctive marketing activity - from other cities - is needed as well. To conclude, although Győr is an industrial city, it has a transforming industrial part, and tourism is also strongly present in its economy. Besides the leading role of business tourism, different types of leisure tourism have the opportunity to take place in the city.
Recently, the Italian government has approved a new law for public contracts and has been laying the groundwork for restarting a planning phase. The government has adopted the indications given by the European Commission regarding the estimation of the external costs within the Cost-Benefit Analysis, and has been approved the ‘Guidelines for assessment of Investment Projects’. In compliance with the new Italian law, the aim of this research was to perform a feasibility study applying quantitative methods regarding the revamping of an Italian tourist railway line. A Cost-Benefit Analysis was performed starting from the quantification of the passengers’ demand potentially interested in using the revamped rail services. The benefits due to the external costs reduction were also estimated (quantified) in terms of variations (with respect to the not project scenario): climate change, air pollution, noises, congestion, and accidents. Estimations results have been proposed in terms of the Measure of Effectiveness underlying a positive Net Present Value equal to about 27 million of Euros, an Internal Rate of Return much greater the discount rate, a benefit/cost ratio equal to 2 and a PayBack Period of 15 years.
The expansion of telecommunication and progress of electronic media constitute important elements of our times. The recent worldwide convergence of information and communication technologies (ICT) and dynamic development of the mass media is leading to noticeable changes in the functioning of contemporary states and societies. Currently, modern technologies play more and more important roles and filter down to almost every field of contemporary human life. It results in the growth of online interactions that can be observed by the inconceivable increase in the number of people with home PCs and Internet access. The proof of it is undoubtedly the emergence and use of concepts such as e-society, e-banking, e-services, e-government, e-government, e-participation and e-democracy. The newly coined word e-democracy evidences that modern technologies have also been widely used in politics. Without any doubt in most countries all actors of political market (politicians, political parties, servants in political/public sector, media) use modern forms of communication with the society. Most of these modern technologies progress the processes of getting and sending information to the citizens, communication with the electorate, and also – which seems to be the biggest advantage – electoral procedures. Thanks to implementation of ICT the interaction between politicians and electorate are improved. The main goal of this text is to analyze electronic voting (e-voting) as one of the important forms of electronic democracy in terms of security aspects. The author of this paper aimed at answering the questions of security of electronic voting as an additional form of participation in elections and referenda.
The manual system of voting has been the most widely used system of electing representatives around the globe, particularly in Africa. Due to the known numerous problems and challenges associated with the manual system of voting, many countries are migrating to the electronic voting system as a suitable and credible means of electing representatives over the manual paper-based system. This research paper therefore investigated the factors influencing adoption and use of an electronic voting system in Ghana. A total of 400 Questionnaire Instruments (QI) were administered to potential respondents in Ghana, of which 387 responded representing a response rate of 96.75%. The Technology Acceptance Model was used as the theoretical framework for the study. The research model was tested using a simple linear regression analysis with SPSS. A little of over 71.1% of the respondents recommended the Electoral Commission (EC) of Ghana to adopt an electronic voting system in the conduct of public elections in Ghana. The results indicated that all the six predictors such as perceived usefulness (PU), perceived ease of use (PEOU), perceived free and fair elections (PFFF), perceived credible elections (PCE), perceived system integrity (PSI) and citizens trust in the election management body (CTEM) were all positively significant in predicting the readiness of citizens to adopt and use an electronic voting system in Ghana. However, jointly, the hypotheses tested revealed that apart from Perceived Free and Fair Elections and Perceived Credible and Transparent Elections, all the other factors such as PU, Perceived System Integrity and Security and Citizen Trust in the Election Management Body were found to be significant predictors of the Willingness of Ghanaians to use an electronic voting system. All the six factors considered in this study jointly account for about 53.1% of the reasons determining the readiness to adopt and use an electronic voting system in Ghana. The implications of this research finding on elections in Ghana are discussed.
This paper explores the concept of academic identity as it relates to the lecture, in particular, the digitized lecture delivered to a camera, in the absence of a student audience. Many academics have the performance aspect of the role thrust upon them with little or no training. For the purpose of this study, we look at the performance of the academic identity and examine tailored film presence coaching for its contributions toward academic identity, specifically in relation to feelings of self-confidence and diminishment of discomfort or stage fright. The case is articulated through the lens of scholar-practitioners, using expert facilitated participatory action research. It demonstrates in our sample of experienced academics, all reported some feelings of uncertainty about presenting lectures to camera prior to coaching. We share how power poses and reframing fear, produced improvements in the ease and competency of all participants. We share exactly how this insight could be adapted for self-coaching by any academic when called to present to a camera and consider the relationship between this and academic identity.
Energy production optimization has been traditionally very important for utilities in order to improve resource consumption. However, load forecasting is a challenging task, as there are a large number of relevant variables that must be considered, and several strategies have been used to deal with this complex problem. This is especially true also in microgrids where many elements have to adjust their performance depending on the future generation and consumption conditions. The goal of this paper is to present a solution for short-term load forecasting in microgrids, based on three machine learning experiments developed in R and web services built and deployed with different components of Cortana Intelligence Suite: Azure Machine Learning, a fully managed cloud service that enables to easily build, deploy, and share predictive analytics solutions; SQL database, a Microsoft database service for app developers; and PowerBI, a suite of business analytics tools to analyze data and share insights. Our results show that Boosted Decision Tree and Fast Forest Quantile regression methods can be very useful to predict hourly short-term consumption in microgrids; moreover, we found that for these types of forecasting models, weather data (temperature, wind, humidity and dew point) can play a crucial role in improving the accuracy of the forecasting solution. Data cleaning and feature engineering methods performed in R and different types of machine learning algorithms (Boosted Decision Tree, Fast Forest Quantile and ARIMA) will be presented, and results and performance metrics discussed.
The modern era has brought with it significant organizational changes. These changes have not bypassed the academic world, and along with the old academic bonds that include a world of knowledge and ethics, academic faculty members are required more than ever not only to survive in the academic world, but also to thrive and flourish and position themselves as modern and opinionated academicians. Based upon the writings of organizational consultants, the article suggests a 10 X C model for cultivating an academic backbone, as well as emphasizing its input to the professional growth of university and college academics: Competence, Calculations of pain & gain, Character, Commitment, Communication, Curiosity, Coping, Courage, Collaboration and Celebration.
There is drastic change in manufacturing era in last two decades. It has become mandatory for the industries to become aware of latest and advanced manufacturing technologies and strategies. Leagile manufacturing focuses on minimizing the wastes and meeting customers’ requirements in minimum time possible. However, it becomes difficult to implement all leagile tools simultaneously in industry. In this paper, 17 main criteria of leagile manufacturing have been found and DEMATEL (Decision Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory) approach has been applied to analyze importance of criteria and casual relations among these criteria.
The downstream manufactures will order their materials from different upstream suppliers to maintain a certain level of the demand. This paper proposes a bivariate model to portray this phenomenon of material demand. We use empirical data to estimate the parameters of model and evaluate the RMSD of model calibration. The results show that the model has better fitness.
To encourage building owners to purchase electricity at the wholesale market and reduce building peak demand, this study aims to develop models that predict day-ahead hourly electricity consumption and demand using artificial neural network (ANN) and support vector machine (SVM). All prediction models are built in Python, with tool Scikit-learn and Pybrain. The input data for both consumption and demand prediction are time stamp, outdoor dry bulb temperature, relative humidity, air handling unit (AHU), supply air temperature and solar radiation. Solar radiation, which is unavailable a day-ahead, is predicted at first, and then this estimation is used as an input to predict consumption and demand. Models to predict consumption and demand are trained in both SVM and ANN, and depend on cooling or heating, weekdays or weekends. The results show that ANN is the better option for both consumption and demand prediction. It can achieve 15.50% to 20.03% coefficient of variance of root mean square error (CVRMSE) for consumption prediction and 22.89% to 32.42% CVRMSE for demand prediction, respectively. To conclude, the presented models have potential to help building owners to purchase electricity at the wholesale market, but they are not robust when used in demand response control.