• Child Soldiers in Northern Uganda: An Analysis of the Challenges and Opportunities for Reintegration and Rehabilitation.

      Francis, David J.; Bainomugisha, Arthur (University of BradfordDepartment of Peace Studies, 2011-12-16)
      The level of brutality and violence against children abducted and forcefully conscripted by the Lord¿s Resistance Army (LRA) in northern Uganda pricked the conscience of humanity. The suffering of the people in northern Uganda was described by Jan Egeland, the former United Nations Under- Secretary for Humanitarian Affairs, as ¿the biggest forgotten humanitarian crisis in the world¿. This study is primarily concerned with the plight of child soldiers in northern Uganda and how their effective reintegration and rehabilitation (RR) could lead to successful peacebuilding. The study is premised on the hypothesis that ¿the promotion of the RR of former child soldiers by providing psychosocial support based on traditional and indigenous resources may contribute to conditions of peace and stability in northern Uganda.¿ The main contribution of this research is that it explores the relevance of psychosocial support based on the traditional and indigenous resources to the RR of child soldiers and peacebuilding of war-torn societies. Psychosocial support based on traditional and indigenous resources as an element of peacebuilding has been the neglected element of peacebuilding by the liberal peacebuilding interventions in most war-torn societies. For example, while traditional and indigenous resources in northern Uganda have been instrumental in the RR of former child soldiers, most scholars and policy makers have largely paid attention to the usual official government and United Nations structured top-down interventions that emphasize Western approaches of peacebuilding. More so, the official approaches have tended to marginalize the plight of former child soldiers in the reconstruction and peacebuilding of northern Uganda. Yet, failing to pay sufficient attention to effective RR of child soldiers could undermine the peace dividends already achieved in northern Uganda. The study also analyses the limitations of psychosocial support based on traditional and indigenous resources in the RR of former child soldiers. It further examines why Western approaches of psychosocial support in the RR of child soldiers have remained in use in spite of the criticisms levelled against them. The study examines other peacebuilding interventions, both official and unofficial, that have been implemented in northern Uganda. In terms of key findings, the study establishes that traditional and indigenous resources are still popular and have been widely used in northern Uganda in the RR of child soldiers. Majority of former child soldiers who were interviewed observed that they found traditional and indigenous resources more helpful than the Western models of psychosocial support. However, it was also established that there is a significant section of former child soldiers who found Western models more relevant in their RR processes. Based on these findings, the study recommends an integrative and holistic model of psychosocial support that blends good elements from both traditional and indigenous resources and Western approaches with greater emphasis on the former.
    • Child Trafficking: A Case of South Sudan

      Francis, David J.; Pankhurst, Donna T.; Akuni, B.A. Job (University of BradfordDivision of Peace Studies, School of Social and International Studies, 2013)
      The question regarding what makes child trafficking persistent in conflict and post-war settings has been subject to intense debate. The human trafficking literature makes general conclusions that trafficking is a by-product of civil wars, and in the process child traffickers exploit the breakdown of the rule of law. As such it is perceived that the governance of the problem of child trafficking can be effective whenever peace and stability is realised and when legal frameworks for protecting children are in place. Prompted by these assertions, I conducted a field study in South Sudan, a country emerging from one of Africa’s longest running and most brutal civil wars fought between the government in Khartoum and Sudanese Peoples Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A). The Sudan’s civil wars ended after the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in 2005. Whilst the termination of the war raised expectations that the international anti-trafficking conventions, treaties and customary laws protecting children would have enforcement powers and would guarantee the rights and safety of the child, the peace failed to deliver on these expectations. Based on empirical data obtained through an intensive micro-level qualitative research conducted in South Sudan over three months, the research findings reveal that a number of challenges pose serious difficulties in enforcing international counter-trafficking legislations and child protection instruments. These challenges are compounded by the interplay of the emerging socio-economic and political development in the post-independent South Sudan.
    • China’s Peacebuilding Approach. Can China through its emergent influence become a key actor in supporting peace and stability in conflict areas?

      Not named; De Blas Marin, Isabel (University of BradfordDepartment of Peace Studies, 2015)
      The purpose of this research is to examine China’s emerging role in peacebuilding. With a fast-growing economy, China is becoming very influential and has increased its political leverage in conflict-affected countries. At the same time, China’s foreign policy and strategy are evolving and Beijing is becoming more proactive in engaging and intervening on peacebuilding efforts. China has developed a unique peacebuilding approach, one that is based on economic growth as way to alleviate poverty and social unrest. China could contribute to bringing these alternative and complementary perspectives to the Peacebuilding debate and open this field to non-Western understandings. This research is going to examine China’s approach, its origins in China’s domestic situation and how China is exporting this model at the international level. Some of the aspects that will be analyse include: general aspects of the Chinese civilisation, philosophy and history, the domestic situation as well as on the ways that China handles its domestic conflicts in Xinjiang and Tibet; and some of the particularities and characteristics of Chinese foreign policy that shape the way it exports peacebuilding policies to the international arena. The intervention of China in the conflict of Kachin, Myanmar will illustrate how Chinese peacebuilding is evolving and moving away from its Westphalian principles of non-interference. China has thus become a key actor in supporting peace and stability and it should be part of any debate around peacebuilding moving forward based on shared interests in, and concern to promote peace and stability.
    • Chromatin architecture and transcriptional regulation at the Epidermal Differentiation Complex (EDC) locus. The role of epigenetic factors in modulating chromatin structure and tissue-specific gene expression at the murine EDC locus during epidermal differentiation.

      Botchkarev, Vladimir A.; Fessing, Michael Y.; Yarker, Joanne L. (University of BradfordSchool of Life Sciences, 2015-06-17)
      The epidermal differentiation complex (EDC) encodes co-ordinately regulated genes critically involved in epidermal differentiation, however knowledge of the molecular mechanisms involved in co-ordinating EDC gene expression is limited. Recent findings indicate p63 dependent changes in the nuclear localisation and higher-order chromatin folding the EDC coincide with the onset of epidermal stratification during embryonic development. Here it is demonstrated that a direct transcription target of p63, the chromatin-remodelling enzyme Brg1, modulates the specific nuclear positioning of the EDC and transcription of differentiation-specific gene encoded at the EDC. In addition, the results of high-resolution 5C-based analyses of the spatial chromatin interactome at a 5.3Mb region spanning the murine EDC in epidermal keratinocytes, and the silenced EDC in thymocytes, are presented. Chromatin interactions at the EDC region in keratinocytes include long-range interactions between multiple proximal and distal candidate gene regulatory regions. Many candidate regulatory elements involved in looping chromatin interactions at the EDC region are enriched for both active (H3K4me1, H3K27ac) and repressive (H3K27me3) chromatin marks and are bound by Sin3a and RBP2 co-repressor complexes. The chromatin interactome at the EDC in epidermal progenitor cells is enriched for bound chromatin architectural proteins Satb1, Satb2, and the cohesin subunit Rad21. Further, a substantial degree of co-localisation is observed between these chromatin architectural proteins, transcription factors and co-factors. Findings presented here suggest that a functional chromatin interactome, mediated by Satb proteins and cohesin, acts in conjunction with transcriptional repressor complexes to facilitate co-ordinated gene expression at the EDC in epidermal progenitor cells upon differentiation. These results provide a foundation for further study of the mechanisms controlling EDC gene expression in health and disease.
    • "Civil war by other means": Conflict, resistance and coexistence in Colombia. Exploring the philosophy and politics of Alasdair MacIntyre in a conflict setting

      Pearce, Jenny V.; Chambers, Paul A. (University of BradfordDepartment of Peace Studies, 2011-10-05)
      Colombia's protracted civil war between Marxist insurgencies and the state has brought grave consequences for the civilian population and the prospects for constructing a viable political community in the country. With up to 5 million internally displaced people, rampant impunity for perpetrators of crimes against humanity and human rights and International Humanitarian Law violations, dozens of politicians and countless members of the armed forces linked to paramilitary organizations, along with increasing social injustices and inequalities, Colombia presents a troubling social-political panorama that has led to what is often referred to as a profound social and institutional 'moral crisis'. Much discussion has centred on the question of achieving some degree of minimal moral and political consensus and 'collective conscience' to humanize and slowly transform the conflict at local, regional and national levels. However, the philosophical and political parameters of this discussion have been and continue to be set firmly within variants of the liberal tradition which, it is argued, does not provide the necessary resources for adequately conceptualizing the problem and conceiving the task of addressing conflict, constructing moral consensus, and seeking social and political coexistence. The thesis argues that the philosophy of Alasdair MacIntyre can provide such resources. MacIntyre provides a convincing account of the philosophical problems that underlie ongoing intractable disagreement and the conflicts it breeds, offering a philosophy that can inform and underpin efforts at social transformation, resistance, and coexistence as well as aiding the necessary task of social scientific research and analysis of the conflict. The thesis analyses the moral dimensions of the conflict in light of MacIntyre's philosophy but also critically explores the adequacy of his politics of local community for the Colombian context. MacIntyre argues that a rational political community can only be constructed through the praxis of local communities engaging in shared moral-political deliberation. Through an empirical case study of a Constituent Assembly process in a rural community that has suffered the impacts of armed conflict for decades, the thesis explores an attempt at constructing peaceful social and political coexistence in light of MacIntyre's moral-sociological framework.
    • The classification and interpretation of tin smelting remains from South West England. A study of the microstructure and chemical composition of tin smelting slags from Devon and Cornwall, and the effect of technological developments upon the character of slags.

      McDonnell, Gerry; Janaway, Robert C.; Stern, Ben; Malham, Albertine (University of BradfordDepartment of Archaeological Sciences, 2011-06-22)
      Artefacts relating to tin smelting from tin mills or ¿blowing houses¿ in Devon and Cornwall, plus material from smelting sites that cover a range of dates from the Bronze Age through to the 19th Century, were examined: these include metallic tin, furnace linings, ore samples and slag. Analysis of tin slags from over forty sites was carried out, to determine microstructure and chemical composition. Techniques employed included optical and scanning electron microscopy, X-ray fluorescence and ICP mass spectrometry. Analysis indicates that slag appearance and composition are heavily influenced by local geology. Composition, particularly iron content, is shown to have a strong effect on slag melting point and viscosity, and the implications for the purity of metal produced are discussed. Bringing together the evidence provided by slag chemistry, documentary sources and smelting remains in the archaeological record, changes in tin smelting technology through time, and the consequences thereof, are considered.
    • A Cloud-Based Intelligent and Energy Efficient Malware Detection Framework. A Framework for Cloud-Based, Energy Efficient, and Reliable Malware Detection in Real-Time Based on Training SVM, Decision Tree, and Boosting using Specified Heuristics Anomalies of Portable Executable Files

      Awan, Irfan U.; Mirza, Qublai K.A. (University of BradfordSchool of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Faculty of Engineering & Informatics, 2017)
      The continuity in the financial and other related losses due to cyber-attacks prove the substantial growth of malware and their lethal proliferation techniques. Every successful malware attack highlights the weaknesses in the defence mechanisms responsible for securing the targeted computer or a network. The recent cyber-attacks reveal the presence of sophistication and intelligence in malware behaviour having the ability to conceal their code and operate within the system autonomously. The conventional detection mechanisms not only possess the scarcity in malware detection capabilities, they consume a large amount of resources while scanning for malicious entities in the system. Many recent reports have highlighted this issue along with the challenges faced by the alternate solutions and studies conducted in the same area. There is an unprecedented need of a resilient and autonomous solution that takes proactive approach against modern malware with stealth behaviour. This thesis proposes a multi-aspect solution comprising of an intelligent malware detection framework and an energy efficient hosting model. The malware detection framework is a combination of conventional and novel malware detection techniques. The proposed framework incorporates comprehensive feature heuristics of files generated by a bespoke static feature extraction tool. These comprehensive heuristics are used to train the machine learning algorithms; Support Vector Machine, Decision Tree, and Boosting to differentiate between clean and malicious files. Both these techniques; feature heuristics and machine learning are combined to form a two-factor detection mechanism. This thesis also presents a cloud-based energy efficient and scalable hosting model, which combines multiple infrastructure components of Amazon Web Services to host the malware detection framework. This hosting model presents a client-server architecture, where client is a lightweight service running on the host machine and server is based on the cloud. The proposed framework and the hosting model were evaluated individually and combined by specifically designed experiments using separate repositories of clean and malicious files. The experiments were designed to evaluate the malware detection capabilities and energy efficiency while operating within a system. The proposed malware detection framework and the hosting model showed significant improvement in malware detection while consuming quite low CPU resources during the operation.
    • CMOS design enhancement techniques for RF receivers. Analysis, design and implementation of RF receivers with component enhancement and component reduction for improved sensitivity and reduced cost, using CMOS technology.

      Not named; Logan, Nandi (University of BradfordSchool of Engineering, Design and Technology, 2010)
      Silicon CMOS Technology is now the preferred process for low power wireless communication devices, although currently much noisier and slower than comparable processes such as SiGe Bipolar and GaAs technologies. However, due to ever-reducing gate sizes and correspondingly higher speeds, higher Ft CMOS processes are increasingly competitive, especially in low power wireless systems such as Bluetooth, Wireless USB, Wimax, Zigbee and W-CDMA transceivers. With the current 32 nm gate sized devices, speeds of 100 GHz and beyond are well within the horizon for CMOS technology, but at a reduced operational voltage, even with thicker gate oxides as compensation. This thesis investigates newer techniques, both from a systems point of view and at a circuit level, to implement an efficient transceiver design that will produce a more sensitive receiver, overcoming the noise disadvantage of using CMOS Silicon. As a starting point, the overall components and available SoC were investigated, together with their architecture. Two novel techniques were developed during this investigation. The first was a high compression point LNA design giving a lower overall systems noise figure for the receiver. The second was an innovative means of matching circuits with low Q components, which enabled the use of smaller inductors and reduced the attenuation loss of the components, the resulting smaller circuit die size leading to smaller and lower cost commercial radio equipment. Both these techniques have had patents filed by the University. Finally, the overall design was laid out for fabrication, taking into account package constraints and bond-wire effects and other parasitic EMC effects.
    • Co-crystal screening of poorly water-soluble active pharmaceutical ingredients. Application of hot stage microscopy on curcumin-nicotinamide system and construction of ternary phase diagram of fenbufen-nicotinamide-water co-crystal system.

      Wright, Colin W.; Chan, Hin Chung Stephen (University of BradfordThe Institute of Pharmaceutical Innovation, 2010-03-10)
      Curcumin is the major phenolic diarylheptane derivative in Curcuma longa and has been reported to possess pharmacological activities. Unfortunately this compound suffers from poor bioavailability and rapid neutral-alkaline degradation. Co-crystal of curcumin is one option under exploration, motivated by the fact that a number of active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) co-crystals with improved dissolution have recently been synthesized. Hence, co-crystallization technique highlights an alternative means to improve the performance of curcumin. Within our work evidences for a co-crystal was ascertained from DSC, Kofler hot stage screening and PXRD, and all confirmed a new crystal phase could have been formed between curcumin and a co-crystallizing agent, nicotinamide. We report that re-crystallization step essentially aids the purification of commercial curcumin, a herbal based actives. Otherwise the prevalence of a new crystal phase in solvent-mediated co-crystallization will be significantly reduced. Besides, phase diagram is an effective tool for the study of solubility behaviours in co-crystal system. In order to acquire related techniques, fenbufen, a poorly water soluble drug, was selected. The result showed the huge difference in solubility between fenbufen and nicotinamide lead to difficulty in the construction of phase diagram.
    • Co-processing of drugs and co-crystal formers and its effect on pharmaceutical dosage-form performance. Co-crystallization of urea/ 2-methoxybenzamide, caffeine/ malonic acid, caffeine/ oxalic acid and theophylline/ malonic acid systems: Solid-state characterization including imaging, thermal, X-ray and Raman spectroscopic techniques with subsequent evaluation of tableting behaviour

      Forbes, Robert T.; Grimsey, Ian M.; Bonner, Michael C.; Ibrahim Mohamed, Asim Y. (University of BradfordDrug Delivery Group, School of Pharmacy, 2008)
      This dissertation has focused on the solid-state characterization of different co-crystal system as well as the effect of co-crystallization of these systems on pharmaceutical dosage form performance. Urea/ 2-MB, caffeine/ malonic acid, caffeine/ oxalic acid and theophylline/ malonic acid co-crystals were prepared using co-grinding- and co-precipitation techniques. In addition, the synthesis of co-crystals through two novel methods has been demonstrated. This includes compaction and convection mixing. The solid-state characterization of the co-crystals has been carried out using XRPD, Raman spectroscopy, DSC, TGA, hot-stage microscopy and SEM. After preparation of co-crystals, tablets have been produced from co-ground-, co-precipitated-, and physical mixtures using Compaction Studies Press (Kaleva), and the data were recorded to compare between the different mixtures, regarding compactibilty, compressibility and deformational properties. The DSC results showed that the physical mixtures of all systems, formed co-crystals during heating process. For systems of urea/ 2-MB, caffeine/ malonic acid and theophylline/ malonic acid, the co-ground mixture produced tablets with higher tensile strength compared with either co-precipitated or physical mixture. However, for caffeine/ oxalic acid system, the tensile strengths of compacts produced from the physical mixture were greater than those obtained from either co-ground or co-precipitated mixtures. The Heckel data suggested that urea/ 2-MB, caffeine/ malonic acid and theophylline/ malonic acid systems are Type 1 materials, as an extensive linearity during compression was indicative of a plastic deformation mechanism, while the caffeine/ oxalic acid system was Type 2 materials. However, the co-precipitated mixture of urea/ 2-MB system was the least compressible, as it possessed the greatest value of yield pressure (85 MPa) and the highest elastic recovery (7.42%). The co-precipitated mixture of both of caffeine/ malonic acid and theophylline/ malonic acid systems was the most compressible with small yield pressure values of (44 & 80 MPa) and elastic recovery of (7.2% & 6.56%), respectively. The co-ground mixture of caffeine/ oxalic acid possessed the highest value of yield pressure (166 MPa) and thus the lowest compressibility among other mixtures. Furthermore, the addition of microcrystalline cellulose and α-lactose monohydrate has affected the crystallinity as well as the tableting properties of the co-crystals. After the addition of excipients, the tensile strength of compacts was about 2 times higher than any other mixture. Finally, urea/ 2-MB and caffeine/ malonic acid co-crystals were successfully synthesized through convection mixing and compaction.
    • Cognitive dysfunction and schizophrenia : Modelling attentional impairment with psychotomimetics. Investigating attentional impairment and structural brain abnormalities following phencyclidine administration: Enhancing translatability between preclinical and clinical tests of attention utilising the modified 5-choice task in rats - the 5-Choice Continuous Performance Test.

      Neill, Joanna C.; Barnes, Samuel (University of BradfordSchool of Pharmacy, 2012-06-15)
      This thesis consisted of experiments designed to explore the construct of attention and investigate the disruptive effects of psychotomimetics, with a specific focus on NMDA antagonists. Phencyclidine (PCP) was administered through a variety of treatment regimens in order to to determine the ability of inducing cognitive-specific disruptions in attentional functioning. The hypothesis that sub-chronic exposure to PCP would result in persistent attentional impairment was tested, using the 5-choice serial reaction time task (5-CSRTT). The 5-CSRTT assesses not only visuospatial attention, but also components of impulsivity, compulsivity, speed of processing and motivation. It was determined that an additional task-related intervention that increased the attentional load was required to elucidate attentional impairment following sub-chronic PCP treatment. The ability of rats to perform the modified version of the 5-CSRTT, known as the 5-choice continuous performance test (5C-CPT), was investigated. The 5C-CPT was implemented to provide a task that may have greater analogy to the human CPT, than the original 5-CSRTT. The consequence of dopaminergic D1 system activation was investigated. It was revealed that D1 partial agonism improved attentional performance in a baseline-dependent manner. Following successful acquisition of the task, it was shown that repeated PCP treatment induced cognitive disruption that was cognitive-specific, and not confounded by generalised response disruption. Furthermore, a partial attenuation of the PCP-induced performance disruption was achieved following administration of the D1 partial agonist, SKF 38393. Moreover, sub-chronic PCP treatment was shown to impair 5C-CPT performance in the drug-free state. However, an additional challenge that further increased the attentional load was needed to elucidate a performance deficit. This highlighted that sustained attention/vigilance is sensitive to persistent impairment following sub-chronic PCP administration in a manner consistent with deficits observed in schizophrenia patients. This prompted the investigation that tested the hypothesis that sub-chronic PCP treatment could induce enduring structural deficits in regions associated with attentional performance. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was conducted, in conjunction with 5-CSRTT and pre-pulse inhibition (PPI). It was revealed that sub-chronic PCP treatment resulted in morphological brain abnormalities in brain regions associated with 5-CSRTT performance. This was coupled with deficits in sustained attentional performance following an increase in attentional load, yet PPI was unaffected. Taken together, these findings suggested sub-chronic PCP treatment impairs attentional functionality, an effect that dissociates between effortful and passive attentional processes.
    • Coin: the missing currency in peace support operations and beyond

      Whitman, Jim R.; Pinder, David (University of BradfordPeace Studies, 2009-02-03)
      The United Nations has a long history of peacekeeping missions. These have evolved over time but since the end of the Cold War there has been rapid growth in those missions where the remit placed on the peacekeepers, both military and civilian, is more complex and demanding. In trying to define these missions and their mandates a wide range of terminology has been developed in an effort to describe the exact nature of the mission. Since many of these deployments take place into theatres where there is no peace to keep, or where a fragile peace reverts to a conflict situation such tight definitions often lead to the troops involved no longer having an appropriate mandate. More recently some of these larger missions constitute in fact interventions to impose peace. Attempts to find a `peace¿ classification for such deployments often confuse the issue rather than bring clarity. In reality these missions are not peacekeeping at all. The almost forgotten doctrine, principles and practices of Counterinsurgency provide a better framework for defining these missions, the respective roles of the key players and the factors necessary to bring success.
    • Collaborative Arrangements and the State of Trust between SMEs and Large Companies in Mandated Business Interactions

      Howorth, Carole; Zueva-Owens, Anna; Al-Ghenaimi, Ali A.H.
      The focus of this study is to explore trust between small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and large companies in interorganizational relationships (IORs) that are mandated by government policy. Due to the important contribution made by SMEs to national economies and to the fact that their growth is pivotal for entrepreneurial activities, many governments have made significant efforts to enhance their performance. However, SMEs are constrained by their lack of resources and experience. Some countries have required large companies to collaborate with SMEs to overcome these constraints. Whilst much attention has been devoted to trust in relationships of choice between SMEs and large companies, scant attention has been paid to the state of trust in mandated business interactions. This study explores the state of trust between large companies and SMEs companies in mandated business interactions, identifying those factors that influence trust between them. Qualitative semi-structured interviews with 25 key managers from large companies and SMEs were conducted in Oman which has a policy of mandated IORs. The interview data were analyzed thematically. The key findings resulted in a new contextual concept of trust, a refinement of classical trust indicators by which the presence of trust in IORs can be more appropriately detected and the development of a model embracing factors which were found to influence trust. Several new factors not previously commented on in the literature were identified in this study. The findings provide theoretical and practical contributions with recommendations for policy, practice and further research.
    • Collaborative Learning and the Co-design of Corporate Responsibility. Building a Theory of Multi-Stakeholder Network Learning from Case Studies of Standardization in Corporate Responsibility.

      Spicer, David P.; Taylor, W. Andrew; McNeillis, Paul Matthew (University of BradfordSchool of Management, 2011-05-06)
      This thesis examines the collaborative development of corporate responsibility (CR) standards from the perspective of organisational learning theory. The author proposes that standards development projects can be understood as Network Learning episodes where learning is reflected in changes in structures, interpretations and practices accompanied by learning processes. Network Learning alone is seen as insufficient to reflect the diverse contributions and outcomes in the special case of CR standards. Concepts from multi-stakeholder learning like the role of dissensus in learning and the empowerment of weaker stakeholders are therefore used to create a synthesis of the two theories in a single conceptual framework. This framework is then tested against a pilot case and three case studies of corporate social responsibility (CSR) standards including the development of the new ISO international standard on social responsibility (SR). The data validates and extended this framework to yield a Multi-Stakeholder Network Learning theory capable of describing the how participants and non-participant stakeholders learn in this context. New concepts are generated from the data, like dislocated learning, which demonstrate how participants in the process and those they represent can experience quite different learning outcomes. Stakeholders whose learning is aligned with the learning of their participant representatives truly have a stake in these influential standards. However, where representatives fail to learn from those represented, the latter¿s stake is diminished. By shedding light on the mechanisms of effective collaborative learning this work contributes to learning theory, the practice of standardization and the normative stakeholder empowerment agenda.
    • Collective Action and Everyday Politics of Smallholder Farmers in Ugbawka: Examining Local Realities and Struggles of Smallholder Rice Farmers

      Morvaridi, Behrooz; Mdee (nee Toner), Anna L.; Aniekwe, Chika C. (University of BradfordBradford Centre for International Development (BCID), School of Social Sciences and Humanities, 2015)
      The research draws on an ethnographic research and explores the everyday practice of collective action in Ugbawka in Enugu State by using interviews and participant observation. The study reveals that smallholder collective action is not best fitted into formal institutional arrangement but takes place within a complex and intricate process that involves interaction with diversity of institutions and actors. Equally, the interactions that occur amongst actors are mediated at the community level through interplay of socio-cultural and political factors. This study recognises and places emphasis on understanding of agency and the exercise of agency at the local level arguing that smallholder farmers are not robot but active individual who exercise their agency purposively or impulsively depending on conditions and the assets available at their disposition as well as their ability to navigate the intricate power dynamic inherent at local context. The thesis thus questioned the simplistic use of formal institutional collective action framework in smallholder collective action at the community level and argues that institutions are not static and do not determine outcomes but are informed by the prevailing conditions at the community level. The study emphasises the role of existing institutions and socially embedded principles in community governance and argues that actors should be the focus of analysis rather than the system in understanding smallholder collective action. The study concludes by advocating for further research that could explore the possibility of hybrid approach that accepts the advantages of both formal and informal institutional forms of smallholder collective action.
    • Combined robust and fragile watermarking algorithms for still images. Design and evaluation of combined blind discrete wavelet transform-based robust watermarking algorithms for copyright protection using mobile phone numbers and fragile watermarking algorithms for content authentication of digital still images using hash functions.

      Abd-Alhameed, Raed A.; Jassim, Taha D. (University of BradfordSchool of Engineering, Design and Technology, 2014-10-16)
      This thesis deals with copyright protection and content authentication for still images. New blind transform domain block based algorithms using one-level and two-level Discrete Wavelet Transform (DWT) were developed for copyright protection. The mobile number with international code is used as the watermarking data. The robust algorithms used the Low-Low frequency coefficients of the DWT to embed the watermarking information. The watermarking information is embedded in the green channel of the RGB colour image and Y channel of the YCbCr images. The watermarking information is scrambled by using a secret key to increase the security of the algorithms. Due to the small size of the watermarking information comparing to the host image size, the embedding process is repeated several times which resulted in increasing the robustness of the algorithms. Shuffling process is implemented during the multi embedding process in order to avoid spatial correlation between the host image and the watermarking information. The effects of using one-level and two-level of DWT on the robustness and image quality have been studied. The Peak Signal to Noise Ratio (PSNR), the Structural Similarity Index Measure (SSIM) and Normalized Correlation Coefficient (NCC) are used to evaluate the fidelity of the images. Several grey and still colour images are used to test the new robust algorithms. The new algorithms offered better results in the robustness against different attacks such as JPEG compression, scaling, salt and pepper noise, Gaussian noise, filters and other image processing compared to DCT based algorithms. The authenticity of the images were assessed by using a fragile watermarking algorithm by using hash function (MD5) as watermarking information embedded in the spatial domain. The new algorithm showed high sensitivity against any tampering on the watermarked images. The combined fragile and robust watermarking caused minimal distortion to the images. The combined scheme achieved both the copyright protection and content authentication.
    • Commercial leisure in Halifax 1750-1950. The development of commercialized leisure provision in a northern industrial town.

      Jennings, Paul; Sheeran, George; Smith, Paul (University of BradfordSchool of Lifelong Education and Development, 2012-02-07)
      This thesis investigates the development of commercial leisure in a northern community, Halifax, over a period of 200 years. It examines a range of leisure pursuits including the public house, theatre and sports and traces their development during a period of population growth and industrialization which came to be based increasingly around the factory. It analyses whether Halifax was typical in the way commercial leisure developed or whether particular local conditions influenced the development of commercial leisure. During the period, Halifax, an ancient town, developed from an important centre of the textile trade in England into a classic Victorian mill town supporting a broad base of industries. Leisure developed from a leisure culture based around traditional holidays and pastimes to a highly commercialized leisure experience increasingly provided by regional and national companies and a sporting calendar that included structured leagues with professional clubs and games played seasonally.
    • The Community Pharmacists’ Role Enhancing Medicines Management for Type II Diabetes in Tripoli, Libya. A Randomised Controlled Trial in Community Pharmacy to Investigate Knowledge and Practice in Relation To Type II Diabetes and Glycaemic Control

      Silcock, Jonathan; Graham, Anne M.; Elhatab, Nesrin M. (University of BradfordSchool of Pharmacy & Medical Sciences, 2016)
      Aim/Objectives: There were two aims; improving type II diabetes glycaemic control; and enhancing the role of community pharmacists by engaging them in type II diabetes medicine management. Methods: This quantitative study collected data from both community pharmacists and patients. In a premises survey, 426 self-administered questionnaires were distributed to community pharmacies. In a knowledge survey, 125 questionnaires were distributed to community pharmacists. In a clinical trial, 40 community pharmacies were randomly assigned to be control (18) and intervention (22) premises. Each pharmacy recruited 4 or 5 patients with type II diabetes. 225 patients were recruited and assigned to receive usual pharmacist care (n=100) or a pre-defined pharmacist intervention (n=125). Results: Community pharmacists had good knowledge of diabetes with average scores 21/29 (±3.18). The differences between control and intervention groups in patients' HbA1c and FPG changes were not significant. In the intervention group patients' diabetes knowledge was significantly improved (p=0.031). In the intervention group HbA1c and FPG improved significantly and in the control group FPG improved significantly and HbA1c did not. Patients' self-reported self-management activities improved significantly around blood glucose measurements (p<0.001) and physical exercising (p=0.001). Attitudes around the value of tight control of diabetes improved (p<0.001). Conclusion: The findings suggest that community pharmacists in Libya may have the ability to improve type II diabetes care. The primary outcomes were not improved in intervention versus control. The before/after analysis showed significant improvement in primary outcomes in the intervention group and also in one of the primary outcomes in the control group. Patients' self-reported self-care activities and attitudes improved significantly in the intervention group.
    • Community relations, conflict resolution and prevention. An exploration with special reference to the Muslim community in Bradford.

      Woodhouse, Thomas; Hendrick, Diane Theresa (University of BradfordDepartment of Peace Studies, 2010-07-13)
      A major threat in present political climate is identity group conflict as shown in such disparate cases as former Yugoslavia, Rwanda , Northern Ireland and the rise in racism and xenophobia in Europe. Conflict Resolution theory has addressed itself to intervention in existing conflict situations either by third parties or the conflicting parties themselves but conflict prevention has been a relatively neglected area. This thesis takes a case study of relations between the Muslim and white majority communities in Bradford where underlying tensions occasionally erupt into conflicts which have national ramifications and sometimes international dimensions. Within this situation there is scope for conflict resolution work but also conflict prevention work. Reference is made to Northern Ireland where identity group conflict has been longstanding and where community relations approaches have ben tried and tested over a period of fifteen to twenty yeas. The community relations work already being undertaken in Bradford is explored along with where and how this needs to be strengthened. An action research project was undertaken to bring together young members of the Muslims and white majority communities in an attempt to assess the usefulness of workshop based approaches in improving inter-group relations and transmitting skills of conflict handling to the participants.
    • Comparative histology of human skin.

      Naylor, Ian; Asaad, Kamil (University of BradfordSchool of Life Sciences, 2013-11-22)
      There are 5 distinct aspects to this study. (i) Two histological stains for collagen were compared against each other for the first time, namely Herovici's technique and picrosirius-polarization. (ii) Skin samples from embalmed cadaveric tissue from human cadavers were compared against samples taken from surgical patients. (iii) Skin samples were studied from different regions of the body to assess if dermal structure correlates with scarring potential. (iv) Skin samples were sectioned in a plane parallel to the epidermis to gain further insight into dermal structure. (v) A novel basement membrane stain was produced. Type I and type III collagen are important structural constituents of dermis and play a crucial role in wound healing. Only two traditional histological methods are thought to differentiate between them, so avoiding the need for antibodies. These were compared against each other for the first time in order to establish differences in image quality and discrimination between Type I and type III collagen. Neither technique requires antibodies, however picrosirius requires polarisation microscopy. to result in a clearer, consistently reproducible collagen staining pattern than the picrosirius method and more importantly did not require elaborate apparatus to analyze. Additionally other cellular elements were visible. Skin samples for research are often obtained from surgical excision. This clearly limits which tissues are available for comparative study to those areas operated on. Studying samples from embalmed medical school cadavers has the great advantage of studying areas of the body not routinely available from common surgical procedures. It was therefore desirable to assess whether embalmed cadaveric tissues exhibited different properties by virtue of their age and the embalming process compared to fresh surgical specimens, in order to give confidence that studies utilising the former would be equally valid. To test this, 58 skin samples from embalmed medical school cadavers were compared to skin samples from 38 fresh operative specimens. The levels of tissue preservation and processing artefacts were similar in both groups. Embalmed medical school cadavers clearly offer an opportunity to study tissue areas not routinely available during surgery. This is the first time such a comparison has been made. Many things will affect the final appearance of the scar, but the single most important determinant is the body region affected. The most common areas for unfavourable scarring, specifically keloid or hypertrophic scarring have been shown to be the ear, deltoid and sternal areas. To test the hypothesis that there is no difference in histological structure of skin that correlates to body region, comparative histology was undertaken exploring the regional variations of skin characteristics in 58 cadaveric samples. Closely comparable samples were taken from the deltoid (9), abdomen (13), sternum (10), post-auricular (5), earlobe (12) and eyelid (9). Epidermal thickness, epidermal appendage density and collagen fibre orientation were examined and qualitative structural differences were assessed for each region Skin samples were then grouped by both topographical location of the body and scarring potential. Skin samples exhibited qualitative and quantifiable regional variations in the characteristics studied. Epidermal thickness and appendage counts did not correlate with scarring potential. Both however were statistically significantly higher in skin sampled from the head compared to the trunk. Bundles of collagen fibres in the reticular dermis were grouped according to their orientation in relation to the coronal plane; either parallel, oblique or perpendicular. The ratio of oblique to parallel fibres was statistically significantly higher in body areas with poorer scarring prognosis. This corresponds to a more disorganised arrangement of collagen fibres in these areas. Further qualitative understanding of dermal collagen fibres came from perpendicular to conventional histological samples. This new method stained basement membranes purple, cytoplasm was stained greenish-brown and nuclei dark brown. Collagen fibres were either thin and blue or thick and green. This method was compared to PAS staining and although required more preparative steps allows greater identification of other cellular structures.