Now showing items 21-40 of 1225

    • Design and Implementation of Radio Frequency Power Feeding Networks for Antenna Array Applications: Simulation and Measurements of Multiport, Equal and Unequal, Fixed and Reconfigurable Radio Frequency Power Feeding Networks for Narrow and Ultra-Wideband Applications

      Abd-Alhameed, Raed A.; Ali, Ammar H.A.
      Power dividers are vital components and widely used in radio technology, such as antenna arrays, power amplifiers, multiplexers and mixers. A good example is the well-known Wilkinson power divider with its distinctive feeding network characteristics. A comprehensive review indicated that limited research is carried out in the area of planar multiport and reconfigurable power dividers in terms of the power levels between output ports. The main objectives of this work were to develop a small size power divider, a planer multi-output ports power divider and a power divider with a reconfigurable power division ratio. These power dividers were designed to operate over either an ultra-wideband frequency (3.1-10.6 GHz) or WLAN bands (2.4 or 5.2 GHz). A novel multi-layered topology solved the complexity of interconnecting isolation resistors by introducing an additional layer below the ground layer. The prototype was fabricated and tested to validate the results. The measurements and simulation were in good agreement. Finally, a novel uniplanar power divider with reconfigurable output power level difference was developed. The configurability feature was achieved by tuning the quarter wave transformer using one varactor diode. The power divider was applied to improve a full duplex system cancellation performance at the receiver element caused by interference from in-site transmitting antennas. This study investigated fixed power dividers, multi-output power dividers and reconfigurable power dividers. The measurements validated by the simulation results and applications proved the designed power dividers could be used in practical applications.
    • The Development of a Hybrid Knowledge-Based System for Integrated Maintenance Strategy and Operations in an Automotive Industry Environment: The Development of a Hybrid Knowledge-Based (KB) System/ Gauging Absences of Pre-Requisites (GAP)/Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) Methodology for Integrated Maintenance Strategy and Operations in an Automotive Industry Environment

      Munive-Hernandez, J. Eduardo; Khan, M. Khurshid; Milana, Milana
      The dependency of maintenance as a manufacturing logistic function has made the considerations of maintenance decisions complex in nature. The importance of maintenance has escalated significantly by the increasing of automation in manufacturing processes. This condition switches the traditional maintenance perspective of “fire-fighter” into the business competitive driver. As a consequence, maintenance needs to consider other related aspects of decision making to achieve competitive advantage. This research aims to develop a hybrid Knowledge-Based (KB) System/GAP/AHP methodology to support the integration of maintenance decision with business and manufacturing perspectives. It constructs over 2000 KB rules on Strategic Stage (business and manufacturing aspects) and Maintenance Operations Stage (maintenance aspects). Each aspect contains KB rules attached with GAP analysis to assess the gap between current and prerequisite condition. AHP analysis is then deployed to compare those aspects structurally in a pair-wise manner to identify the critical ones to be rectified. This hybrid KB system is useful in reviewing the existing maintenance system performance and provides reasonable recommendations to improve maintenance performance with respect to business and manufacturing perspectives. Eventually, it indicates the roadmap from the current state to the benchmark goals for the maintenance system. This novel methodology of KBS/GAP/AHP to support maintenance decision is developed for a particular application in the automotive environment. The validation is conducted in two automotive companies in Indonesia and one published case study in an automotive company. The result confirms that the developed KB system can provide the valid, reasonable and consistent result to propose structured recommendation for maintenance improvement priority.
    • Investigating the Transfer of Service Culture through Internal Service Quality: A Case of Subsidiary Hotels in an Emerging Market like Nigeria

      Liao, Mei-Na; Richardson, Sue; Maidugu, Joseph M.
      This study explores how foreign owned service firms with headquarters in developed markets transfer their service culture into a country with an emerging market like Nigeria. This study is motivated by the need to understand this process considering the unique features of these markets, and the expansion into countries with emerging markets by service firms located in countries with developed markets to take advantage of both natural and human resources. The research uses case studies of two hotels from different firms, both in Abuja, Nigeria, to explore activities that enhance the transfer of service culture from the Headquarters of these hotels based in the USA. Both hotels were investigated through semi-structured interviews, based on elements of internal service quality from the service profit chain model, in addition to documents and observation notes. The finding reveals the process of transferring service culture is difficult and complex because of unique contextual challenges. Some of these challenges were shown to be country specific, while some may be unique to countries with emerging markets. The country specific challenges include; strong religious allegiance and cultural affinity, and unique societal factors. Other factors could apply to any country with an emerging market these include; corruption, inadequate infrastructure, and lack of skilled labour. Similarly this study identified new elements that enabled both firms to address these challenges as well as enhance the transfer of focal areas in their signature service culture. Some of these elements have also been identified to be country specific i.e. inclusiveness and provision of social support, while the remaining three are emerging market specific i.e. transfer of knowledge and skills, accommodating corruption, and improvisation. These new elements also add to the existing five elements of internal service quality, which are employee selection, job description, reward and recognition, tools to serve customers, and workplace design. The study demonstrates the important role that intermediaries can play in achieving accommodations to achieve at least partial transfer of the parent service culture. Overall, the research contributes to management practice by highlighting areas to focus on when attempting to transfer service culture in similar circumstances. This thesis adds to the academic literature on the transfer of service culture from headquarters in a developed country to a unit in a country with an emerging market. It does this by extending concepts from the service profit chain to show how internal elements can enhance or block the transfer of service culture.
    • Federalism & post-conflict statebuilding: The case of Somalia

      aa, aa; Chevreau, Oliver M.
      The use of federalism as an integral component in post-conflict statebuilding processes is becoming increasingly common (e.g. Iraq, Yemen & Sri Lanka). The current academic literature, however, is divided between those that argue that federalism in such fragile environments will increase the likelihood of secession and ‘balkanisation’ and that those that argue that only federalism can provide the periphery with constitutionally protected rights against the centre. However, currently there is little empirical evidence to support either view. This research seeks to contribute to this gap by assessing whether the recent introduction of federalism in Somalia since 2013 has led to the delivery of tangible governance and peacebuilding outcomes. This thesis specifically focuses on the federalism process in Jubaland, a state which formed in 2013. Data was gathered across the region using a statistically significant perception survey and was supplemented by Key Informant Interviews. The surveys were designed to assess public opinion towards federalism and understand how its introduction was perceived to have impacted local governance and conflict dynamics. This analysis was further extended to assess the impact of federalism in other federal member states including Puntland, Galmadug and Southwest based on a review of available secondary literature. An analytical framework assessed the strength of Federal Government-Federal Member State, intra-state and inter-state relations and the extent to which a particular state had undertook tangible governance reforms. The key findings of the research indicate that the population in Jubaland is strongly supportive of federalism in principle and the manner in which it has been implemented. Federalism was seen by the majority of the population as a way of maintaining Somali unity whilst protecting local interests and meeting ocal needs. The approach of the Jubaland authorities to adopt a consociational approach to governance led to the establishment of a sustainable political settlement and the inclusion of minority groups for the first time. However, these successes have not been experienced more widely across Somalia. Other federal member states have experienced poor relations with the federal government. Internally, some states also have weak and violent relations with groups who are competing for influence and poor external relationships with other federal member states. In general, there is a low commitment to governance reform at federal-state level. These findings underpin the final conclusion that whilst federalism in Somalia has enabled improved governance and peacebuilding outcomes in Jubaland, it is the manner of how federal governance has been implemented in other federal states that explains the disparity in results across the country as a whole. More widely, this research suggests that federalism in post-conflict contexts is neither a panacea for peace and stability, or in of itself, a catalyst for inevitable fragmentation.
    • Genotoxic effects of NSAIDs and hydrocortisone in bulk and nano forms in lymphocytes from patients with haematological cancers

      Anderson, Diana; Normington, Charmaine
      Chronic inflammation is intimately linked with cancer development and progression and therefore reducing or eliminating inflammation represents a logical treatment and prevention strategy. Studies have shown that anti-inflammatory agents have anti-tumour effects in cancers, with reduced metastases and mortality. Current use of anti-inflammatory agents in the treatment and prevention of cancer is limited by their toxicity and side effects. The emerging field of nanotechnology allows the fundamental properties of a drug to be altered, creating a product with improved reactivity and bioavailability, leading to more targeted treatments and reduced dosage. In the present study, the genotoxic effects of three commonly used anti-inflammatory drugs; aspirin, ibuprofen and hydrocortisone, in their bulk and nano forms were evaluated on peripheral blood lymphocytes of healthy donors using the comet assay and the micronucleus assay. In order to determine any anti-cancer effects, these agents were also tested in peripheral blood lymphocytes in patients with haematological cancers. The glucocorticoid hydrocortisone was also evaluated for anti-oxidant capacity. Our results demonstrate that the nano versions of each drug produced a different response than the bulk counterpart, indicating that a reduction in particle size had an impact on the reactivity of the drug. Our results also indicate that the nano versions of each drug were less genotoxic than the bulk formulation, further emphasising the potential of nanoparticles as an improvement to current treatment options. We also found an anti-oxidant effect with hydrocortisone, with a more profound effect seen with the nano formulation.
    • Scheduling and Resource Efficiency Balancing: Discrete Species Conserving Cuckoo Search for Scheduling in an Uncertain Execution Environment

      Hu, Yim Fun; Li, Jian-Ping; Bibiks, Kirils
      The main goal of a scheduling process is to decide when and how to execute each of the project’s activities. Despite large variety of researched scheduling problems, the majority of them can be described as generalisations of the resource-constrained project scheduling problem (RCPSP). Because of wide applicability and challenging difficulty, RCPSP has attracted vast amount of attention in the research community and great variety of heuristics have been adapted for solving it. Even though these heuristics are structurally different and operate according to diverse principles, they are designed to obtain only one solution at a time. In the recent researches on RCPSPs, it was proven that these kind of problems have complex multimodal fitness landscapes, which are characterised by a wide solution search spaces and presence of multiple local and global optima. The main goal of this thesis is twofold. Firstly, it presents a variation of the RCPSP that considers optimisation of projects in an uncertain environment where resources are modelled to adapt to their environment and, as the result of this, improve their efficiency. Secondly, modification of a novel evolutionary computation method Cuckoo Search (CS) is proposed, which has been adapted for solving combinatorial optimisation problems and modified to obtain multiple solutions. To test the proposed methodology, two sets of experiments are carried out. First, the developed algorithm is applied to a real-life software development project. Second, performance of the algorithm is tested on universal benchmark instances for scheduling problems which were modified to take into account specifics of the proposed optimisation model. The results of both experiments demonstrate that the proposed methodology achieves competitive level of performance and is capable of finding multiple global solutions, as well as prove its applicability in real-life projects.
    • Towards Dementia Friendly Emergency Departments: A mixed method exploratory study identifying opportunities to improve the quality and safety of care for people with dementia in emergency departments

      Armitage, Gerry R.; Capstick, Andrea; Shaw, Courtney J.
      This project provides the first comprehensive investigation into the experiences of people with dementia (PWD), their carers, and the staff who provide care in emergency departments (ED) in the UK. This is a mixed methods study which used a national survey (N=403) followed by ED observation (32 hours) and qualitative interviews with health professionals (N=29), in an iterative and sequential design to present a holistic evaluation of the current experiences of the key parties- patients, carers, and ED staff involved in receiving and providing care. The theoretical perspective of the Human Factors Approach to patient safety underpins this work. The project included people with dementia and carers as collaborators and co-designers in both the development of the research tools and in shaping the project outputs. This research explores the barriers and facilitators to safe and effective care, concluding that here are a number of barriers (poor integration of communication systems, inappropriate physical environments, misalignment of staff training and workplace staffing models), which may affect the healthcare team’s ability to provide effective dementia care. These systemic challenges both give rise to and exacerbate poor organisational and safety cultures. However, despite these challenges, there are examples of safe and effective care (positive deviants) where uncommonly good outcomes for this patient population are achieved. Examining these examples offers valuable insight into potential adaptions, which could be used to improve existing care.
    • Evaluating Social Housing Sustainability Policies in the Context of Local Government: A Public Value Perspective

      Irani, Zahir; Kamal, M.M.; Sadiqi, Jawed
      The demand for social housing has grown recently more than its supply, particularly in the United Kingdom (UK). The existing literature addresses the lack of a sustainability policy and its contribution to the lack of political intent to support the achievement of social housing homeownership predominantly under the Right-to-Buy. This research highlights that several government projects have failed in the past to deliver satisfying outcomes for the public; thus, their value to social housing tenants and public value has been largely neglected. The main aim of this research project is to evaluate social housing policies through the lens of public value that drives the decision-making process and to construct a conceptual framework to enhance the accountability and efficiency of social housing tenants in the context of local government. This has been achieved through key research objectives and the key citizens, barriers and recommendations have been explored to enlighten social housing sustainability policy. This conceptual framework was tested in UK local government authorities and with local citizens who had recently started to address diverse sustainability factors in terms of social housing policy. The result was a qualitative case study enquiry based on the use of focus group-interviews, the vignettes approach and documentary evidence to explore the validity of the conceptual framework as a tool for supporting the decision-making process in this field. The findings obtained from the in-depth case study provided an insight into the social housing evaluation criteria and the influences of a sustainability policy from both a practical background and an internal organisational perspective. The findings addressed the poor affordability of a whole-life value of a property, insufficient funding due to austerity, poor legal frameworks, poor governance, a lack of suitable designs for social cohesion, poverty, the well-organized use of resources and environmental protection.
    • Insights of Taste Masking from Molecular Interactions and Microstructures of Microspheres

      Zhang, Jiwen; Patterson, Laurence H.; Shao, Qun; Guo, Zhen
      The effects of taste masking are determined by interactions between drug and excipients as well as the microstructures of the particulate drug delivery systems (DDS). Cyclodextrin (CD) is a widely used taste masking agent, to which the relationship between kinetic parameters (Ka and Kd) of a drug and taste masking remains unexplored, which is investigated for the first time in this study. A data base of the kinetic parameters for drug-CD was established by Surface Plasmon Resonance Imaging (SPRi) and High Performance Affinity Chromatography (HPAC). Combined with the electronic tongue, Ka and Kd based models for the taste masking effect of HP-β-CD were successfully established and applied to the prediction of taste masking effects. Paracetamol was used as a model drug for taste masking formulation optimization. As well as drug release the microstructure of solid DDS has considerable influence on drug taste. The microstructure of lipid microspheres and the molecular distribution of drug and excipients in lipid microspheres were investigated by Synchrotron radiation-based micro-computed tomography (SR-μCT) and Synchrotron radiation-based Fourier-transform infrared spectromicroscopy (SR-FTIR), respectively. The results demonstrated that the polymeric formulation components as well as shape and particle size of the drug were the key factors to taste masking of paracetamol by inhibiting bust release thereby reducing the interaction intensity of the bitterness. The FTIR absorption spectra confirmed the deposition and formation of chitosan and gelatin films on the drug microsphere surface by layer-by-layer coating. In conclusion, this research demonstrates the molecular kinetic basis of CD taste-masking as well as microstructural basis of particle systems for bitter taste masking.
    • Integration of Genome Scale Data for Identifying New Biomarkers in Colon Cancer: Integrated Analysis of Transcriptomics and Epigenomics Data from High Throughput Technologies in Order to Identifying New Biomarkers Genes for Personalised Targeted Therapies for Patients Suffering from Colon Cancer

      Peng, Yonghong; Hassan, Aamir Ul
      Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer and the leading cause of cancer deaths in Western industrialised countries. Despite recent advances in the screening, diagnosis, and treatment of colorectal cancer, an estimated 608,000 people die every year due to colon cancer. Our current knowledge of colorectal carcinogenesis indicates a multifactorial and multi-step process that involves various genetic alterations and several biological pathways. The identification of molecular markers with early diagnostic and precise clinical outcome in colon cancer is a challenging task because of tumour heterogeneity. This Ph.D.-thesis presents the molecular and cellular mechanisms leading to colorectal cancer. A systematical review of the literature is conducted on Microarray Gene expression profiling, gene ontology enrichment analysis, microRNA and system Biology and various bioinformatics tools. We aimed this study to stratify a colon tumour into molecular distinct subtypes, identification of novel diagnostic targets and prediction of reliable prognostic signatures for clinical practice using microarray expression datasets. We performed an integrated analysis of gene expression data based on genetic, epigenetic and extensive clinical information using unsupervised learning, correlation and functional network analysis. As results, we identified 267-gene and 124-gene signatures that can distinguish normal, primary and metastatic tissues, and also involved in important regulatory functions such as immune-response, lipid metabolism and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) signalling pathways. For the first time, we also identify miRNAs that can differentiate between primary colon from metastatic and a prognostic signature of grade and stage levels, which can be a major contributor to complex transcriptional phenotypes in a colon tumour.
    • Resisting division along ethnic lines: a case study of two communities who challenged discourses of war during the Yugoslav conflict 1991-1995

      Abi-Ezzi, Karen; Whitman, Jim R.; Otmacic, Valentina
      There is a generalized perception on the 1991-1995 war in the former Yugoslavia as an ethnic conflict caused by longstanding antagonisms among homogenous ethnic groups inhabiting its territory. In such a worldview, which became part of the dominant discourse, inter-ethnic violence in Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina was inevitable and the division of the population along ethnic lines was needed to stop the violence. In this thesis I problematize the dominant discourse on the ethnic nature and inevitability of violence, as well as on the ethnic fracturing as a solution, by exposing the experiences of two largest communities that remained ethnically mixed and preserved communal peace throughout wartime – the community of the region of Gorski kotar in Croatia and the community of the city of Tuzla in Bosnia-Herzegovina. By documenting and analysing their discourses and practices, and by contrasting them with the dominant discourses of war in these two countries, I provide evidence that these two communities were oases of peace which developed a counter-discourse and resisted violence by preserving their multi-ethnic character, promoting multiple identities, cherishing inter-ethnic cooperation and ensuring equality and good governance for all their citizens. Their narratives challenge the well-established «truths» about the war in the former Yugoslavia and add to the complexity of collective memories of its peoples.
    • The ADR / CR Divide: An Autoethnographic Interrogation of its Impact on the Theory and Practice of Mediation

      Woodhouse, Thomas; Hughes, Caroline; Whitman, Jim R.; Phillips, Isabel A.
      There is a divide between the fields of Conflict Resolution (CR) and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) that impacts on the transfer of knowledge and skills. This is the central hypothesis investigated and confirmed through analysis of the literatures of the two fields, the responses to a questionnaire to practitioners, and autoethnographic interrogation. A generational analysis of authors is combined with the results of a (N=28) questionnaire with practitioners from both fields. This delineates the divide in the theory and literature as well as how those operating in each field identify, conceptualise mediation and what they read. The autoethnography explores the fundamental impact of on conflict role definitions generally and the mediator specifically. It then looks at the impact of crossing the ADR/CR divide on mediation practice, highlighting the necessity for practitioners of a ‘both and’ approach to skills/ knowledge and attitude/qualities. This leads to the consideration of a framework for mediator competence across the ADR/CR divide. The interaction of the mediators’ normative project and the ability of parties to self-determine is explored practically and ethically. This highlights a range of issues with expectations mediation and mediators and foregrounds the impact on the mediator of the mediator role. It ends with a call for further research using innovative methodologies, such as autoethnography, that illuminate mediation as a relational process.
    • Psoriasis activation of cells important in cardiovascular disease

      Bridgewood, Charles D.
      Psoriasis is an immune mediated inflammatory disease which affects 2-3% of the world’s population. Over the last decade, psoriasis has been acknowledged as an independent risk factor for atherosclerosis. The precise mechanism or mechanisms of the heightened risk is widely speculated. Endothelial cells and macrophages are central players in the immunopathological development of both diseases. Interleukin-36 cytokines (IL-36) have been heavily implicated in psoriasis immunopathology. Significant upregulation of epidermal IL-36 is a recognised characteristic of psoriatic skin inflammation. IL-36 induces inflammatory responses in dendritic cells, fibroblasts and epithelial cells. While vascular alterations are a hallmark of psoriatic lesions and dermal endothelial cells are well known to play a critical role in dermal inflammation, the effects of IL-36 on endothelial cells have not been defined. We report that endothelial cells including dermal microvascular cells express a functionally active IL-36 receptor. Adhesion molecules VCAM-1 and ICAM-1 are upregulated following IL-36γ stimulation, and this is reversed in the presence of the endogenous IL-36 receptor antagonist. IL-36γ-stimulated endothelial cells secrete the proinflammatory chemokines IL-8, CCL2 and CCL20. Chemotaxis assays showed increased migration of T-cells following IL-36γ stimulation of endothelial cells. Both resident and infiltrating inflammatory myeloid cells contribute to the immunopathology of psoriasis by promoting the IL-23/IL-17 axis. We show that IL-36γ induces the production of psoriasis-associated cytokines from macrophages (IL-23, TNFα) and that this response is enhanced in macrophages from psoriasis patients. This effect is specific for IL-36γ and could not be mimicked by other IL-1 family cytokines such as IL-1α. Furthermore, IL-36γ stimulated macrophages potently activated endothelial cells as illustrated by ICAM-1(CD54) upregulation, and led to increased adherence of monocytes, effects that were markedly more pronounced for psoriatic macrophages. Interestingly, regardless of stimulus, monocytes isolated from psoriasis patients showed increased adherence to both the stimulated and unstimulated endothelium when compared to monocytes from healthy individuals. Collectively, these findings add to the growing evidence for IL-36γ having roles in psoriatic responses, by enhancing endothelium directed leukocyte infiltration into the skin and strengthening the IL-23/IL-17 pathway. Our findings also point to a cellular response which could potentially support cardiovascular comorbidities in psoriasis.
    • Modelling and Quantitative Analysis of Performance vs Security Trade-offs in Computer Networks: An investigation into the modelling and discrete-event simulation analysis of performance vs security trade-offs in computer networks, based on combined metrics and stochastic activity networks (SANs)

      Kouvatsos, Demetres D.; Habib Zadeh, Esmaeil
      Performance modelling and evaluation has long been considered of paramount importance to computer networks from design through development, tuning and upgrading. These networks, however, have evolved significantly since their first introduction a few decades ago. The Ubiquitous Web in particular with fast-emerging unprecedented services has become an integral part of everyday life. However, this all is coming at the cost of substantially increased security risks. Hence cybercrime is now a pervasive threat for today’s internet-dependent societies. Given the frequency and variety of attacks as well as the threat of new, more sophisticated and destructive future attacks, security has become more prevalent and mounting concern in the design and management of computer networks. Therefore equally important if not more so is security. Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all solution to security challenges. One security defence system can only help to battle against a certain class of security threats. For overall security, a holistic approach including both reactive and proactive security measures is commonly suggested. As such, network security may have to combine multiple layers of defence at the edge and in the network and in its constituent individual nodes. Performance and security, however, are inextricably intertwined as security measures require considerable amounts of computational resources to execute. Moreover, in the absence of appropriate security measures, frequent security failures are likely to occur, which may catastrophically affect network performance, not to mention serious data breaches among many other security related risks. In this thesis, we study optimisation problems for the trade-offs between performance and security as they exist between performance and dependability. While performance metrics are widely studied and well-established, those of security are rarely defined in a strict mathematical sense. We therefore aim to conceptualise and formulate security by analogy with dependability so that, like performance, it can be modelled and quantified. Having employed a stochastic modelling formalism, we propose a new model for a single node of a generic computer network that is subject to various security threats. We believe this nodal model captures both performance and security aspects of a computer node more realistically, in particular the intertwinements between them. We adopt a simulation-based modelling approach in order to identify, on the basis of combined metrics, optimal trade-offs between performance and security and facilitate more sophisticated trade-off optimisation studies in the field. We realise that system parameters can be found that optimise these abstract combined metrics, while they are optimal neither for performance nor for security individually. Based on the proposed simulation modelling framework, credible numerical experiments are carried out, indicating the scope for further work extensions for a systematic performance vs security tuning of computer networks.
    • Impact of oil revenue volatility on the real exchange rate and the structure of economy: Empirical evidence of “Dutch disease” in Iraq

      Jalilian, Hossein; Shepotylo, Oleksandr; Yaqub, Kamaran Q.
      This thesis analyses the extent to which a boom in a particular export commodity sector (i.e., oil) affects relative price of non-tradable goods against tradable goods, the real exchange rate and competitiveness in the rest of the economy: This problem has been analysed in the early stage by (Corden and Neary 1982) with the so-called ‘Dutch-disease’. As a result, booming sector (oil Sector) the country’s currency appreciates, thereby reducing the competitiveness of the country’s traditional export sector in international market. This thesis examines whether Dutch Disease is present in Iraq in the light of having not study about Dutch Disease phenomena. It evaluates the impact of growing oil revenues on non-oil sectors of the Iraqi economy. It produces some empirical evidence for the explanation non-tradable goods and contraction of tradable goods sector due to booming oil sector and appreciation real exchange rate and made tradable goods sector become uncompetitive for export. The main findings form this thesis that the Iraqi economy was subject to have the Dutch disease phenomena during the boom. Some of the indications of the disease, remarkably the increase of relative prices, the real exchange rate appreciation, contraction tradable goods sector and expansion of nontraded goods output were applicable. The study uses annual time series data sourced from home and international agencies from 1970 to 2013. Due to problem with endogeneity, the data are analysed through the use of two stages least square. Finally, the thesis discusses briefly some policy measures that will help avoid the issue of appreciation real exchange rate and changing the structure of economy out of tradable goods to non-tradable goods sector.
    • Genotoxic effects of nano and bulk forms of aspirin and ibuprofen on blood samples from prostate cancer patients compared to those from healthy individuals: The protective effects of NSAIDs against oxidative damage, quantification of DNA repair capacity and major signal transduction pathways in lymphocytes from healthy individuals and prostate cancer patients

      Anderson, Diana; Baumgartner, Adolf; Guma, Azeza S.S.
      Inhibiting inflammatory processes or eliminating inflammation represents a logical role in the suppression and treatment strategy of cancer. Several studies have shown that anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) have promise as anticancer agents while reducing metastases and mortality. NSAIDs are seriously limited by side effects and their toxicity, which can become cumulative with their long-term administration for chemoprevention. The huge development in nanotechnology allows the drugs to exhibit novel and significantly improved properties compared to the large particles of the respective bulk compound, leading to more targeted therapy and reduced dosage. The overall aim of this thesis is to add to our understanding of cancer prevention and treatment through studying the genotoxicity mechanisms of NSAIDs agents in lymphocytes. In this study, the genotoxicity mechanisms of NSAID in bulk and nanoparticles forms a strategy to prevent and minimise the damage in human lymphocytes. Aspirin nano (ASP N) caused a significant decrease in deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) damage compared to aspirin bulk (ASP B). Also, ibuprofen nano (IBU N) showed a significant reduction in DNA damage compared to ibuprofen bulk (IBU B). Micronuclei (MNi) decreased after ASP N, ASP B and IBU N in prostate cancer patients and healthy individuals, and the ibuprofen bulk showed a significant increase of MNi formation in lymphocytes from healthy and prostate cancer patients when compared to untreated lymphocytes from prostate cancer patients. In order to study the geno-protective properties of these drugs, the protective effect of NSAIDs and the quantification of the DNA repair capacity in lymphocytes was studied. ASP N was found to increase the DNA repair capacity and reduced the reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation significantly more than ASP B. Finally, the role of NSAIDs on some key regulatory signal transduction pathways in isolated lymphocyte cells was investigated by studying their effect on ataxia-telangiectasia-mutated kinase (ATM) and ataxia-telangiectasia and Rad3-related kinase (ATR) mRNA. ATM mRNA significantly increased after treatment with ASP B, ASP N and IBU N. ATR expression also increased after treatment with IBU B and IBU N, but was only significant with IBU N. These findings indicate that a reduction in particle size had an impact on the reactivity of the drug, further emphasising the potential of nanoparticles as improvement to current treatment options.
    • A Study on GARCH volatility processes in pricing derivatives

      Adkins, Roger; Sharma, Abhijit; Wang, Yizhe
      In this thesis the GARCH models are applied to evaluate financial options and futures. In the first application, the GARCH models in parsimonious form are studied for pricing the S&P500 options. Unlike previous studies that focus on developed formulation, the results indicate that simplified models provide effective performance and it is the simple GARCH model that yields the least valuation error. To our consideration, examining model possessing simplification is of practical importance because model estimation becomes readily accessible through available econometric software, which circumvent programming barriers in implementing alternative one’s own pricing methods. The second application consider the component GARCH models for currency option pricing. The valuation results favour the component formulations particularly in the pricing of long term contracts. Volatility modelling results indicate that the return-volatility relationship is symmetric in the long run, but over the short term asymmetry also arises in the EURUSD and GBPUSD exchange rates. The third application evaluates canola futures in Canada in relation to spot market price. Results confirm the cointegrating relationship with threshold corresponding to transaction and adjustment cost. And it is the futures market that adjusts actively to price disparities but in the meantime there is volatility spillover from futures to the spot market. Overall, our empirical assessments indicate the importance of the time varying volatility and the improvements achieved in option pricing and futures evaluation. We believe the present study’s analysis provides useful suggestions and further guidance to practitioners and investors for the pricing and trading in the equity and foreign exchange markets, also to the market agents to better evaluate price uncertainty in order to guard against adverse price changes.
    • The Development of Body Image in Young Children: The Role of Muscularity and Adiposity

      Bryant, Eleanor J.; Waters, Gillian M.; Pepper, Lisa B.
      Negative body image can cause serious psychological problems. In some Western societies, body image concerns can develop at a young age, with early preadolescents preferring thinner bodies and reporting body dissatisfaction. The aims here were to clarify the significant gaps in published research, and to challenge existing assumptions around weight, muscularity, and body satisfaction in children. In addition, this novel research focused on young children’s body dissatisfaction, particularly young boys (aged 4-11 years). Traditional measures of body satisfaction are limited and do not incorporate muscularity, assess individual body parts, or indicate the direction of dissatisfaction. Here, new visual measures were developed along with a prototype application for a touch-screen tablet to measure body satisfaction in children. Through 4 innovative experimental studies the current research explored factors influencing body image: including gender, age, ethnicity, BMI, perceived body size, and sociocultural factors (e.g. cultural ideals and body size stereotypes). Results consistently supported the findings of study 1 which showed gender differences in body satisfaction: boys were more dissatisfied with their bodies than girls, and their dissatisfaction varied over the different body parts (torso, arms and legs). Stereotypical idealised body perception was evident: boys wanted to be muscular and girls desired to be lean. In study 2, ideal body choices saw boys choosing more muscular figures and girls more lean figures for the self, than the ones they choose for another boy or girl. Boys desired more muscular ideal figures than what they perceived the opposite sex would choose. Study 3 revealed the pattern of assigning positive attributes was gendered. Boys viewed the hypermuscular figure the most positively and girls the normal weight and lean figures the most positively. However, both sexes did not want to look like the overweight figure as a child or adult. Study 4 showed parent’s body satisfaction and their perception of their child’s current body size predicted child’s body satisfaction, and exposure to media predicted the child’s ideal and future ideal adult figure choices. Overall, a combination of factors involved in the development of children’s body image were revealed, including sociocultural influences, age, ethnicity, and perceived body size. The research carried out within this thesis has extended our knowledge of pre-adolescent’s body dissatisfaction, has developed innovative measures for use with younger children, and revealed fascinating findings around young boys’ body image.
    • High and Low Involvement: An Exploration of Ethical Product Decisions

      Wright, Gillian H.; Foti, Lianne K.
      Purpose Ethical elaboration is an aspect of product involvement and this research examines the relationship between involvement and ethical consumption providing a more holistic understanding of ethical decision-­making. This paper identifies antecedents of both low and high involvement ethical product decision-­making at farmers’ markets, and with sustainable and energy efficient features in the housing market, respectively. Design/methodology/approach These aims are achieved through semi-­structured and in-­depth interviews with consumers and sellers of ethical products across low and high involvement domains. Findings The empirical investigation reveals new insights into the constructs considered when purchasing high involvement ethical products. Barriers are discussed and findings examine the relationships between trust, information, ethical motivation and signalling. Research implications A research process framework for the study of ethical decision-­making is presented, demonstrating that constructs are approached differently between involvement levels. A conceptual model providing steps for transferring knowledge gained from the research to practice is also developed. Practical implications This research aids in the dispersion of information among stakeholders so that sustainability and energy efficiency can be part of the standard real estate conversation. Social implications Sustainability and energy efficiency (SEE) housing is seen as a niche market and this research will help alter the behaviour of the stakeholders in order to incentivise consumers to change their purchase patterns to include SEE features. Originality/value Most of the work on ethical consumption deals with low-­involvement products. This study addresses high-­involvement ethical consumption within the housing market through a qualitative approach.
    • Tanzania’s Mainstream News Media Engagement with National Development

      Macaulay, Fiona; Nkya, Ananilea W.
      This thesis examines the ways in which Tanzania’s media report news on development issues and what accounts for the way they report, guided by social constructionist philosophy and framing theory. In terms of how they report news, the thesis draws on primary data generated from: (1) an analysis of 10,371 news stories reported by 15 Tanzanian media outlets over the course of one month, noting the general types of preferred stories and the range of news sources relied upon (which tend to be government or elite sources and male); (2) an in-depth analysis of 36 newspapers’ front-page lead stories, looking not just at the presentation and framing of these stories, but also at the omissions and elisions, using interpretive content analysis. In order to explore why the Tanzanian media cover development issues the way they do, the thesis draws on another set of primary data: semi-structured, face-to-face interviews conducted with 76 media stakeholders, where editors, journalists and media owners reflect on the constraints and opportunities – media ownership, laws used to control media autonomy, financing and professional training – facing them as media professionals trying to report on topics linked to their country’s social, economic and political challenges. There is, to date, little literature that foregrounds the views and experiences of media professionals in Tanzania or, indeed, in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and it is to this literature that this thesis primarily contributes. It concludes that from the colonial period to the current day Tanzanian media has been a contested space in which different stakeholders have diverse views about the role and functioning of the media. If the media are to play a normative, watchdog role, holding government to account and thus contributing, indirectly, to national development, then the issues of ownership, legal constraints, training and financial capacity are key.