• The occurrence and potential health risk of microcystins in drinking water of rural areas in China.

      Zheng, Weiwei; Yang, Lan; Ma, Wuren; Huang, Yu; Crabbe, M. James C.; Qu, Weidong (Elsevier, 2018-12-26)
      Large-scale use of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizers in agricultural production, environmental pollution and climate warming cause frequent algal blooms and the generation of algal toxins in water bodies in China. Algal pollution is increasing and microcystins (MCs) are detectable in both surface and ground water in China at sub- μg/L and μg/L levels. Toxicological studies show that microcystins have hepatic and  renal toxicity, genotoxicity, tumor-promoting effects, neurotoxicity, reproductive and developmental toxicity. Epidemiological evidence from China further reveals that chronic exposure to MCs through drinking water and liver cancer are positively correlated and demonstrate that MCs in drinking water are a main risk factor in liver cancer. Effectively controlled water pollution, reduced sewage discharge, and enhanced wastewater treatments are pivotal measures to control algal pollution and toxins in the drinking water of rural China.
    • Ofsted and children’s services: what performance indicators and other factors are associated with better inspection results?

      Wilkins, David; Antonopoulou, Vivi; University of Bedfordshire; Cardiff University (Oxford University Press, 2018-11-26)
      ‘Failing’ an Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) inspection has severe consequences for a local authority. Senior managers may lose their jobs and the workforce as a whole can be destabilised. In extreme cases, central government can decide the authority is no longer capable of running children’s services. On the other hand, receiving positive Ofsted judgements often brings with it a national reputation for excellence. This study reports the findings of an analysis of key performance indicators, expenditure and deprivation in relation to Ofsted inspections for eighty-seven local authorities in England undertaken between 2014 and 2016. Our aim was to examine the association between these factors and Ofsted judgements. Our findings suggest that, for most of the factors we considered, there is no clear pattern of better or worse performance between local authorities with different Ofsted ratings. However, ‘good’ and ‘outstanding’ authorities tend to outperform other authorities in relation to some procedural variables. By itself, the level of local-authority deprivation was most clearly associated with the Ofsted rating and expenditure was associated with the authority’s deprivation level, but not their Ofsted judgement. Comparisons are made with the Department of Education’s concept of ‘value-added’ education in relation to schools.
    • Old country passions: an international examination of country image, animosity, and affinity among ethnic consumers

      Papadopoulos, Nicolas; El Banna, Alia; Murphy, Steven A. (American Marketing Association, 2017-06-12)
      Ethnic consumers are an important market segment in both traditionally multicultural countries as well as newer recipients of growing immigration movements. Such consumers may carry with them views toward "old friends and foes" which may influence their attitudes toward the products of countries perceived as friendly or hostile in relation to their original home countries. This study examines together for the first time four place-related constructs, namely, country and people images, product images, affinity, and animosity, and their potential effects on purchase intentions, juxtaposing these measures against views toward countries that may be perceived as friendly or hostile from the perspective of the ethnic consumers' homeland, alongside a neutral "benchmark" country for comparison. The results show that country/people and product images, affinity, and animosity work differently depending on the target country, product and people evaluations are influenced by both affective and cognitive factors, and attitudes vary in their predictive ability on purchase intentions, sometimes in line with earlier findings and sometimes not. Implications and directions for future research are discussed.
    • The older adult

      Wadd, Sarah (CRC Press, 2017-05-02)
    • Older and wiser? first year BDS graduate entry students and their views on using social media and professional practice

      Knott, PN; Wassif, Hoda; University of Bedfordshire; University of Central Lancashire (Springer Nature, 2018-08-31)
      The use of social media sites (SMS) has increased exponentially since their creation and introduction in the early 2000s. The number of regular users of SMS is estimated at over two billion people worldwide. Ethical and legal guidelines exert an additional responsibility on the behaviour of both graduate and undergraduate dentists when compared to members of the general public with some assumption that life experience can offer some insight into attitudes about online use of social media in relation to professional practice. Aim We set out to explore the views of the first year graduate entry programme students at the University of Central Lancashire and their use of SMS together with their opinions on what they consider to be professional online behaviour. Methods A mixed-methods approach was adopted with a questionnaire and semi-structured interviews which were designed to elicit the students’ opinions. Results For this group of students, 100% were using social media sites and some were aware of some of their limitations and possible impact on their careers. There was some rather superficial knowledge of what is and is not professional to post via social media, however, students were not fully aware about the legal and ethical guidelines in place in relation to the topic. Conclusion Results from this study present an opportunity and a challenge for educators to incorporate additional details not only about professionalism and ethical and legal aspects within the undergraduate curriculum but more specific emphasis on the use of social media as part of the undergraduate BDS course.
    • On (not) learning from self-neglect safeguarding adult reviews

      Preston-Shoot, Michael (Emerald Group Holdings Ltd., 2021-07-09)
      Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to update the core data set of self-neglect safeguarding adult reviews (SARs) and accompanying thematic analysis. It also explores whether lessons are being learned from the findings and recommendations of an increasing number of reviews on self-neglect cases. Design/methodology/approach: Further published reviews are added to the core data set, mainly drawn from the websites of safeguarding adults boards (SABs). Thematic analysis is updated using the domains used previously. The domains and the thematic analysis are grounded in the evidence-based model of good practice, reported in this journal previously. Findings: Familiar findings emerge from the thematic analysis and reinforce the evidence-base of good practice with individuals who self-neglect and for policies and procedures with which to support those practitioners working with such cases. Multiple exclusion homelessness and alcohol misuse are prominent. Some SABs are having to return to further cases of self-neglect to review, inviting scrutiny of what is (not) being learned from earlier findings and recommendations. Research limitations/implications: The national database of reviews commissioned by SABs remains incomplete. The Care Act 2014 does not require publication of reports but only a summary of findings and recommendations in SAB annual reports. National Health Service Digital annual data sets do not enable the identification of reviews by types of abuse and neglect. However, the first national analysis of SARs has found self-neglect to be the most prominent type of abuse and/or neglect reviewed. Drawing together the findings builds on what is known about the components of effective practice, and effective policy and organisational arrangements for practice. Practical implications: Answering the question “why” remains a significant challenge for SARs. The findings confirm the relevance of the evidence-base for effective practice but SARs are limited in their analysis of what enables and what obstructs the components of best practice. Greater explicit use of research and other published SARs might assist with answering the “why” question. Greater scrutiny is needed of the impact of the national legal, policy and financial context within which adult safeguarding is situated. Originality/value: The paper extends the thematic analysis of available reviews that focus on study with adults who self-neglect, further reinforcing the evidence base for practice. Propositions are explored, concerned with whether learning is being maximised from the process of case review.
    • On self-neglect and safeguarding adult reviews: diminishing returns or adding value?

      Preston-Shoot, Michael (2017-02-15)
      Purpose: One purpose is to update the core data set of self-neglect serious case reviews and safeguarding adult reviews, and accompanying thematic analysis. A second purpose is to respond to the critique in the Wood Report of serious case reviews commissioned by Local Safeguarding Children Boards by exploring the degree to which the reviews scrutinised here can transform and improve the quality of adult safeguarding practice. Design/Methodology/approach: Further published reviews are added to the core data set from the web sites of Safeguarding Adults Boards and from contacts with SAB Independent Chairs and Business Managers. Thematic analysis is updated using the four domains employed previously. The findings are then further used to respond to the critique in the Wood Report of serious case reviews commissioned by Local Safeguarding Children Boards, with implications discussed for Safeguarding Adult Boards. Findings: Thematic analysis within and recommendations from reviews have tended to focus on the micro context, namely what takes place between individual practitioners, their teams and adults who self-neglect. This level of analysis enables an understanding of local geography. However, there are other wider systems that impact on and influence this work. If review findings and recommendations are to fully answer the question “why”, systemic analysis should appreciate the influence of national geography. Review findings and recommendations may also be used to contest the critique of reviews, namely that they fail to engage practitioners, are insufficiently systemic and of variable quality, and generate repetitive findings from which lessons are not learned. Research limitations/implications: There is still no national database of reviews commissioned by SABs so the data set reported here might be incomplete. The Care Act 2014 does not require publication of reports but only a summary of findings and recommendations in SAB annual reports. This makes learning for service improvement challenging. Reading the reviews reported here against the strands in the critique of serious case reviews enables conclusions to be reached about their potential to transform adult safeguarding policy and practice. Practical implications: Answering the question “why” is a significant challenge for safeguarding adult reviews. Different approaches have been recommended, some rooted in systems theory. The critique of serious case reviews challenges those now engaged in safeguarding adult reviews to reflect on how transformational change can be achieved to improve the quality of adult safeguarding policy and practice. Social implications: Originality/value: The paper extends the thematic analysis of available reviews that focus on work with adults who self-neglect, further building on the evidence base for practice. The paper also contributes new perspectives to the process of conducting safeguarding adult reviews by using the analysis of themes and recommendations within this data set to evaluate the critique that reviews are insufficiently systemic, fail to engage those involved in reviewed cases and in their repetitive conclusions demonstrate that lessons are not being learned.
    • On tacit knowledge for philosophy of education

      Belas, Oliver (Springer, 2017-11-17)
      This article offers a detailed reading Gascoigne and Thornton’s book Tacit Knowledge (2013), which aims to account for the tacitness of tacit knowledge (TK) while preserving its status as knowledge proper. I take issue with their characterization and rejection of the existential-phenomenological Background—which they presuppose even as they dismiss—and their claim that TK can be articulated “from within”—which betrays a residual Cartesianism, the result of their elision of conceptuality and propositionality. Knowledgeable acts instantiate capacities which we might know we have and of which we can be aware, but which are not propositionally structured at their “core”. Nevertheless, propositionality is necessary to what Robert Brandom calls, in Making It Explicit (1994) and Articulating Reasons (2000), “explicitation”, which notion also presupposes a tacit dimension, which is, simply, the embodied person (the knower), without which no conception of knowledge can get any purchase. On my view, there is no knowledgeable act that can be understood as such separately from the notion of skilled corporeal performance. The account I offer cannot make sense of so-called “knowledge-based” education, as opposed to systems and styles which supposedly privilege “contentless” skills over and above “knowledge”, because on the phenomenological and inferentialist lines I endorse, neither the concepts “knowledge” nor “skill” has any purchase or meaning without the other.
    • On textual analysis and machine learning for cyberstalking detection

      Frommholz, Ingo; al-Khateeb, Haider; Potthast, Martin; Ghasem, Zinnar; Shukla, Mitul; Short, Emma; University of Bedfordshire; Bauhaus-Universität Weimar (Springer, 2016-06-01)
      Cyber security has become a major concern for users and businesses alike. Cyberstalking and harassment have been identified as a growing anti-social problem. Besides detecting cyberstalking and harassment, there is the need to gather digital evidence, often by the victim. To this end, we provide an overview of and discuss relevant technological means, in particular coming from text analytics as well as machine learning, that are capable to address the above challenges. We present a framework for the detection of text-based cyberstalking and the role and challenges of some core techniques such as author identification, text classification and personalisation. We then discuss PAN, a network and evaluation initiative that focusses on digital text forensics, in particular author identification.
    • On the impact of mobility on battery-less RF energy harvesting system performance

      Munir, Bilal; Dyo, Vladimir (MDPI, 2018-10-23)
      The future of Internet of Things (IoT) envisions billions of sensors integrated with the physical environment. At the same time, recharging and replacing batteries on this infrastructure could result not only in high maintenance costs, but also large amounts of toxic waste due to the need to dispose of old batteries. Recently, battery-free sensor platforms have been developed that use supercapacitors as energy storage, promising maintenance-free and perpetual sensor operation. While prior work focused on supercapacitor characterization, modelling and supercapacitor-aware scheduling, the impact of mobility on capacitor charging and overall sensor application performance has been largely ignored. We show that supercapacitor size is critical for mobile system performance and that selecting an optimal value is not trivial: small capacitors charge quickly and enable the node to operate in low energy environments, but cannot support intensive tasks such as communication or reprogramming; increasing the capacitor size, on the other hand, enables the support for energy-intensive tasks, but may prevent the node from booting at all if the node navigates in a low energy area. The paper investigates this problem and proposes a hybrid storage solution that uses an adaptive learning algorithm to predict the amount of available ambient energy and dynamically switch between two capacitors depending on the environment. The evaluation based on extensive simulations and prototype measurements showed up to 40% and 80% improvement compared to a fixed-capacitor approach in terms of the amount of harvested energy and sensor coverage.
    • On the origin of giant seeds: the macroevolution of the double coconut (Lodoicea maldivica) and its relatives (Borasseae, Arecaceae)

      Bellot, Sidonie; Bayton, Ross P.; Couvreur, Thomas L.P.; Dodsworth, Steven; Eiserhardt, Wolf L.; Guignard, Maite S.; Pritchard, Hugh W.; Roberts, Lucy; Toorop, Peter E.; Baker, William J. (Wiley, 2020-06-16)
      Seed size shapes plant evolution and ecosystems, and may be driven by plant size and architecture, dispersers, habitat and insularity. How these factors influence the evolution of giant seeds is unclear, as are the rate of evolution and the biogeographical consequences of giant seeds. We generated DNA and seed size data for the palm tribe Borasseae (Arecaceae) and its relatives, which show a wide diversity in seed size and include the double coconut (Lodoicea maldivica), the largest seed in the world. We inferred their phylogeny, dispersal history and rates of change in seed size, and evaluated the possible influence of plant size, inflorescence branching, habitat and insularity on these changes. Large seeds were involved in 10 oceanic dispersals. Following theoretical predictions, we found that: taller plants with fewer-branched inflorescences produced larger seeds; seed size tended to evolve faster on islands (except Madagascar); and seeds of shade-loving Borasseae tended to be larger. Plant size and inflorescence branching may constrain seed size in Borasseae and their relatives. The possible roles of insularity, habitat and dispersers are difficult to disentangle. Evolutionary contingencies better explain the gigantism of the double coconut than unusually high rates of seed size increase.
    • On the simultaneous inversion of micro-perforated panels' parameters: application to single and double air-cavity backed systems

      Tayong-Boumda, Rostand; Manyo Manyo, Jacques A.; Siryabe, Emmanuel; Ntamack, Guy E.; University of Bristol; Université de Ngaoundéré; Université du Havre (Acoustical Society of America, 2018-04-20)
      This study deals with the deduction of parameters of Micro-Perforated Panel (MPP) systems from impedance tube data. It is shown that there is an ambiguity problem that exists between the MPP thickness and its open area ratio. This problem makes it difficult to invert the reflection coefficient data fitting and therefore to deduct the MPP parameters. A technique is proposed to reduce this ambiguity by using an equation that links the hole diameter to the open area ratio. Reflection coefficient data obtained for two specimens with different characteristics is employed for searching the MPP parameters using a simulated annealing algorithm. The results obtained demonstrate the effectiveness of this technique.
    • On the usage of history for energy efficient spectrum sensing

      Syed, Tazeen Shabana; Safdar, Ghazanfar Ali; University of Bedfordshire (IEEE, 2015-03-31)
      Spectrum sensing is one of the most challenging issues in cognitive radio networks. It provides protection to primary users (PUs) from interference and also creates opportunities of spectrum access for secondary users (SUs). It should be performed efficiently to reduce number of false alarms and missed detection. At the same time, spectrum sensing should be energy efficient to ensure the longevity of cognitive radio devices. This work presents a novel scheme which investigates the usage of history for energy efficient spectrum sensing in infrastructure cognitive radio networks. The presented scheme employs an iteratively developed history processing database. It is shown that usage of history helps predicting PU activity and results into reduced spectrum scanning by SUs thereby improving the sensing related energy consumption.
    • On touching and speaking in (post) (de) colonial discourse - from lessing to Marechera and Veit-Wild

      Piotrowska, Agnieszka (Taylor and Francis Inc., 2016-09-19)
      Jean-Luc Nancy in his seminal book on the body and its significance in history of philosophy Corpus makes a point that the body and the discussions about it ought to be open. He says that in reflecting on it he did not want to: produce the effect of a closed or finite thing, because when we talk about the body we talk about something entirely opposed to the closed and the finite. With the body, we speak about something open and infinite, about the opening of closure itself, the infinite of the finite itself. (2008: 122) This particular reflection came upon him whilst walking through the streets of Paris to give a lecture on the body. Suddenly, he heard about the atrocities in Bosnia and felt compelled to abandon his well-prepared talk and instead find an open space to talk about the links between the body, the soul and our place in the world. He says in his book, “Body is certitude shattered and blown to bits” (ibid.: 3), a phrase that in the age of terrorist attacks sounds particularly ominous.
    • One-class support vector machine for joint variable selection and detection of postural balance degradation

      Amoud, Hassan; Snoussi, Hichem; Hewson, David; Duchêne, Jacques (Springer, 2009-12-31)
      The study of the static posture is of great interest for the analysis of the deficit of the control of balance. A method of balance analysis is to use a platform of forces which makes it possible to extract displacement of the centre of pressure (COP). The parameters extracted from COP time series prove like variables keys to supervise the degradation of balance. However, the irrelevance and\or the redundancy of some of them make difficult an effective detection of degradation. The objective of this paper is the implementation of a method of detection (SVDD) and of a procedure of selection of the relevant parameters able to detect a degradation of balance. The selected criterion of selection is the maximization of the area AUC under the curve ROC.
    • Online behaviour of luxury fashion brand advocates

      Parrott, Guy; Danbury, Annie Hagen; Kanthavanich, Poramate; University of Bedfordshire (Emerald, 2015-09-16)
      Purpose – Over the past few years online fashion communities have proliferated becoming an increasingly powerful forum for user-generated content, and consequently, the fashion industry has shown great interest in such communities. The purpose of this paper is to review and analyse brand advocacy behaviour within luxury brand accessory forums: to analyse the role these communities play in influencing purchase intention; assessing their contribution to fashion brand love. Design/methodology/approach – The study adopted a netnographic approach to the phenomenon of online luxury accessory communities. The research reports observational data including blog texts and audience comments for four popular forums: The Purse Forum, The Fashion Spot, The Bag Forum (TBF) and Shoe Forum (SF). Although the forums are open to all and are designed to be internationally relevant; the observations were conducted from a base in the UK. Findings – Findings indicate that informants display some unifying characteristics clustered around engagement, involvement, self-concept and self-connection, brand love and hedonic values. Informants however, display some discernible differences as they “rally” to two distinctive totems: first, active luxury brand advocates and second, passive brand advocates. Although subtle, these differences suggest significant possibilities for fashion brand owners. Research limitations/implications – Further research could include the measurement of brand advocacy to distinguish more clearly between high and low levels of advocacy and the resulting consumer behaviour intentions. One sub-group that would be interesting to explore is that of brand evangelists and their relationship with fashion brands: what are the reasons for treating brands as religious artefacts and can this extreme level of advocacy be developed by marketing? The study focused on observing online posts by self-selected brand advocates. A worthwhile comparison could be made with fashion communities where brand marketers are active participants and how this influences the discourse and actions of brand advocates. Practical implications – The findings indicate that all forum members are incredibly attached to their brands, but will still consider purchasing several brands as their “evoked set”. Additionally, even when demonstrating involvement, they can operate as passive observers in the online community. Originality/value – Social media, especially online forums, play an important role in contemporary luxury fashion branding. This study addresses the role these forums play in supporting brand love and the contribution they make to luxury brand advocacy. Membership and influence dynamics are reported; which have resonance to both practitioners and researchers.
    • Ontology driven personal health knowledge discovery

      Yu, Hong Qing; Zhao, Xia; Deng, Zhikun; Dong, Feng; University of Bedfordshire (Springer Verlag, 2015-08-04)
      With fast development of smart sensor devices and mobile applications, all different kinds of information related to humans can be founded on the Internet that can be seen as a universal data repository or called Web of Data. Health or healthcare related data are not exceptional in the Web of Data age. The most important and valuable data comes from IoT such as sensors and mobile activity tracking applications to support developing self-health risk detection and management applications. This paper presents a comprehensive ontology driven knowledge discovery framework in personal health domain, which aims to reason and discover health knowledge from various data sources of IoT. The framework contains a sensor oriented Personal Wellness Knowledge Ontology and data integration architecture to complete a whole lifecycle of health knowledge detecting and reasoning path. In addition, a cloud computing based parallel semantic lifting algorithm is described for illustrating the semantic data generation process in detail.
    • The ontology of exclusion: a European perspective on leisure constraints research

      Ravenscroft, Neil; Church, Andrew; Gilchrist, Paul (Venture Publishing, Inc., 2005-03-30)
    • Ontology-based e-assessment for accounting education

      Litherland, Kate; Carmichael, Patrick; Martinez-Garcia, Agustina; Liverpool John Moores University; University of Bedfordshire (Taylor & Francis (Routledge), 2013-11-01)
      This summary reports on a pilot of a novel, ontology-based e-assessment system in accounting. The system, OeLe, uses emerging semantic technologies to offer an online assessment environment capable of marking students' free text answers to questions of a conceptual nature. It does this by matching their response with a ‘concept map’ or ‘ontology’ of domain knowledge expressed by subject specialists. This article describes the potential affordances and demands of ontology-based assessment and offers suggestions for future development of such an approach.