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This Position Paper from the Academy of Nutrition Sciences is the first in a series which describe the nature of the scientific evidence and frameworks that underpin nutrition recommendations for health. This first paper focuses on evidence which underpins dietary recommendations for prevention of non-communicable diseases. It considers methodological advances made in nutritional epidemiology and frameworks used by expert groups to support objective, rigorous and transparent translation of the evidence into dietary recommendations. The flexibility of these processes allows updating of recommendations as new evidence becomes available. For cardiovascular disease and some cancers the paper has highlighted the long-term consistency of a number of recommendations.
The innate challenges in this complex area of science include those relating to dietary assessment, misreporting and the confounding of dietary associations due to changes in exposures over time. A large body of experimental data is available that has the potential to support epidemiological findings but many of the studies have not been designed to allow their extrapolation to dietary recommendations for humans. Systematic criteria that would allow objective selection of these data based on rigour and relevance to human nutrition would significantly add to the translational value of this area of nutrition science.
The Academy makes three recommendations: i) development of methodologies and criteria for selection of relevant experimental data, ii) further development of innovative approaches for measuring human dietary intake and reducing confounding in long term cohort studies, iii) retention of national nutrition surveillance programmes needed for extrapolating global research findings to UK populations.
Most techniques for pollen-based quantitative climate reconstruction use modern assemblages as a reference data set. We examine the implication of methodological choices in the selection and treatment of the reference data set for climate reconstructions using Weighted Averaging Partial Least Squares (WA-PLS) regression and records of the last glacial period from Europe. We show that the training data set used is important because it determines the climate space sampled. The range and continuity of sampling along the climate gradient is more important than sampling density. Reconstruction uncertainties are generally reduced when more taxa are included, but combining related taxa that are poorly sampled in the data set to a higher taxonomic level provides more stable reconstructions. Excluding taxa that are climatically insensitive, or systematically overrepresented in fossil pollen assemblages because of known biases in pollen production or transport, makes no significant difference to the reconstructions. However, the exclusion of taxa overrepresented because of preservation issues does produce an improvement. These findings are relevant not only for WA-PLS reconstructions but also for similar approaches using modern assemblage reference data. There is no universal solution to these issues, but we propose a number of checks to evaluate the robustness of pollen-based reconstructions.
Early childhood education and care (ECEC) policies and services in Canada exhibit marked gaps in access, creating ‘childcare deserts’ and distributional disadvantages. Cognate family policies that support children and families, such as parental leave and child benefits, are also underdeveloped. This article examines the current state of ECEC services in Canada and the reasons behind the uncoordinated array of services and policy, namely, a liberal welfare state tradition that historically has encouraged private and market-based care, a comparatively decentralised federal system that militates against coordinated policy-making, and a welfare state built on gendered assumptions about care work. The article assesses recent government initiatives, including the federal 2017 Multilateral Framework on Early Learning and Child Care, concluding that existing federal and provincial initiatives have limited potential to bring about paradigmatic third-order change.
Antonia Potter Prentice, Co-managing partner of Athena, which provides specialist advice, policy analysis and project management on peace and security issues.,
Camille Marquis Bissonnette, Doctoral candidate in International Law at Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada.
To be powerful and influential, one can argue, requires not just representation but presence, and not just presence, but meaningful, empowered presence. In 2016, there were only ten women serving as heads of states and nine serving as heads of government, and women held only 22 % of seats in parliaments around the world. Despite huge effort and promotion, women candidates for the top jobs at the United Nations (UN) and the US Government failed to prevail. Peace processes, in particular, as they “provide key opportunities for major reforms that transform institutions, structures, and relationships in societies affected by conflict or crises,” are instrumental for women's empowerment and for their consideration in the construction of their post-conflict society. According to a study by UN Women based on 31 major peace processes occurring between 1992 and 2011, women represented 2.4 % of chief mediators (although the UN itself has never appointed a woman as chief mediator), 4 % of peace agreement signatories, and 9 % of negotiators in formal peace processes. Most of the time, this low representation of women in peace negotiations is the result of passive – as opposed to deliberate – exclusion, but as some feminist writers have clearly underlined, gender-neutrality often corresponds to gender-blindness. Traditionally, women are very much involved in informal peace negotiations at the grassroots level and within civil society initiatives, and in particular in disarmament processes; this contribution is now widely documented and recognized. But as is well known, women's participation in formal peace negotiations remains very marginal. Moreover, even when women are included, their viewpoints are often sidelined, as they are perceived to lack relevant qualifications, credibility or simply power.
Many hypotheses have been proposed to explain the dramatic underrepresentation of women in formal peace processes, starting with a lack of women in the traditional institutional “pipelines” to mediation and negotiation. For example, women are still a minority within governments and armies, and in the military and political wings of armed groups, and yet the belligerents ‘ representatives are generally perceived to be the most crucial actors in peacemaking – at least in the prevailing concept of peace-making – to the expense of other groups, mostly civil society.
The purpose of the study was to identify self-perceived gaps in gerontological competencies among recreation staff in long-term care homes in Ontario. Two sets of gerontological competencies, in an online survey, were distributed to recreation staff working in 500 long-term care homes. There were 487 recreation staff members who completed the questionnaire. The questionnaire contained questions regarding staff’s current competencies and competencies that they recalled learning prior to entering the workforce. Factors that were perceived to contribute to confidence in gerontological competencies were experience, continuing education, in-service training sessions, and education. Understanding the gaps in gerontological competencies is required for enhancing therapeutic recreation education and continuing education.
In long-term care facilities (LTCF), registered nurses (RNs) perform both clinical and supervisory roles as part of a team aiming to provide high-quality care to residents. The residents have several co-morbidities and complex care needs. Unfortunately, new RNs receive minimal preparation in gerontology and supervisory experience during their program, leading to low retention rates and affecting resident outcomes. This qualitative study explored factors that influence supervisory performance of new RNs in LTCF from the perspective of 24 participants from Ontario, Canada. Data were collected through individual interviews, followed by a directed content analysis. Three levels of influences were identified: personal influences, organizational influences, and external influences. Each level presented with sub-elements, further describing the factors that impact the supervisory performance of the new RN. To retain new RNs in LTC, organizations must provide additional gerontological education and mentoring for new RNs to flourish in their supervisory roles.
Knowledge regarding association of dietary branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) and type 2 diabetes (T2D), and the contribution of BCAA from meat to the risk of T2D are scarce. We evaluated associations between dietary BCAA intake, meat intake, interaction between BCAA and meat intake and risk of T2D. Data analyses were performed for 74 155 participants aged 50−79 years at baseline from the Women’s Health Initiative for up to 15 years of follow-up. We excluded from analysis participants with treated T2D, and factors potentially associated with T2D or missing covariate data. The BCAA and total meat intake was estimated from FFQ. Using Cox proportional hazards models, we assessed the relationship between BCAA intake, meat intake, and T2D, adjusting for confounders. A 20 % increment in total BCAA intake (g/d and %energy) was associated with a 7 % higher risk for T2D (hazard ratio (HR) 1·07; 95 % CI 1·05, 1·09). For total meat intake, a 20 % increment was associated with a 4 % higher risk of T2D (HR 1·04; 95 % CI 1·03, 1·05). The associations between BCAA intake and T2D were attenuated but remained significant after adjustment for total meat intake. These relations did not materially differ with or without adjustment for BMI. Our results suggest that dietary BCAA and meat intake are positively associated with T2D among postmenopausal women. The association of BCAA and diabetes risk was attenuated but remained positive after adjustment for meat intake suggesting that BCAA intake in part but not in full is contributing to the association of meat with T2D risk.
A story titled “The Impressionists” that was published in 1897 should have something to say about art, but does it? The sixth installment in Rudyard Kipling's Stalky & Co. series, “The Impressionists” follows the antics of M'Turk, Stalky, and Beetle, three cunning boys at a dreary English military preparatory school. Suspecting these boys of cheating on their schoolwork, housemaster Mr. Prout turns them out of their private study into the main house dormitory. For revenge, and hoping to win back their room, Stalky & Co. become agents provocateurs. They start a fight in their house and manage to involve the other housemasters’ houses: “Under cover of the confusion the three escaped to the corridor, whence they called in and sent up passers-by to the fray. ‘Rescue, King's! King's! King's! Number Twelve form-room! Rescue, Prout's – Prout's! Rescue, Macrea's! Rescue, Hartopp's!’” (102). The three boys then allow Mr. Prout to overhear a conversation that makes money-lending seem common practice in the houses: “‘Where's that shillin’ you owe me?’ said Beetle suddenly. Stalky could not see Prout behind him, but returned the lead without a quaver. ‘I only owed you ninepence, you old usurer’” (103). Stalky & Co. rile up the other boys by telling ghost stories and spreading slanderous ditties; they turn the house against the prefects and undermine Mr. Prout's authority; and in the end they win back their room, but they are also found out by the headmaster, who mixes corporeal punishment with his admonishments: “There is a limit – one finds it by experience, Beetle – beyond which it is never safe to pursue private vendettas, because – don't move – sooner or later one comes – into collision with the – higher authority, who has studied the animal. Et ego – M'Turk, please – in Arcadia vixi” (117). The boys take the headmaster's attentions as a compliment, and they take his advice. Never again do they stake the school's peace in the pursuit of their own ends.
Though invented some decades earlier, sound recording emerged as a tool of research and commercial industry in the 1890s, and the first archives dedicated to preservation of sound materials emerged at the end of that decade. In the century and more that has followed, sound archiving as a discipline has on the whole not been embraced by archival academia, with little in the way of vocational training available to potential sound or audiovisual archivists anywhere. As a result, as Edmondson has observed, sound archivists have often come ‘from a variety of backgrounds, with or without formal qualifications in a collecting discipline, [and] were largely compelled to learn on the job in situations which required primary attention to the practicalities of archival operation, with little attention to the theoretical’ (Edmondson, 2004, 12).
In the absence of an accredited professional framework, those looking after sound collections have been required to be inventive and use their initiative, and smaller sound collections held within larger nonspecialized institutions have often been overlooked. Important and influential organizations such as the International Association of Sound & Audiovisual Archives (IASA) and the Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC) have emerged, co-ordinating the development of much-needed international standards and codes of practice. A culture of self-sufficiency and initiative has in many ways served sound archivists well, not least in meeting the technological challenges of audio preservation through migration. As a result, audio archivists have been pioneers of digitization and digital preservation, with file-based mass storage solutions being planned by some broadcast archives as early as 1993.
The pressing case for digitization of audio content
As of 2016, the majority of holdings in audio collections are carrierbased, both analogue and digital, and the most pressing challenge is to move content into a sustainable file-based environment. Digital carrierbased content has been a feature of sound archives since the early 1980s. The public launch of the compact disc in 1982 ushered in the mass publication of digital audio, and by 1984, the British Library Sound Archive (then known as the National Sound Archive) and other institutions were creating and archiving their own digital content on domestic videotape, using the Sony PCM F1 format.
The fundamental reason for the presence of peatlands is a positive balance between plant production and decomposition of organic matter. Organic matter accumulates in these systems because prolonged waterlogged conditions result in soil anoxia (i.e. exclusion of oxygen), and under these conditions decomposition rates can be lower than those of primary production, as seen in Figure 8.1. Climate therefore plays an important role in peat accumulation, both directly by affecting plant productivity and decomposition of organic matter, and indirectly through its effects on hydrology, water balance and vegetation composition (for a summary, refer to Yu, Beilman and Jones (2009)). Climate provides broad-scale controls on peatland extent, types and vegetation, and ultimately, ecosystem services such as carbon sequestration and storage, as well as water and hazard regulation (Chapters 4 and 5). Peatlands can therefore play a vital role in ecosystem-based adaptation in helping society mitigate and adapt to climate change.
Future climate change is likely to alter the hydrology and soil temperature of peatlands, with far-reaching consequences for their biodiversity, ecology and biogeochemistry, and interactions with the Earth system. For example, the possibility of drier conditions allowing peat erosion and increases in CO2 emissions that would result in a positive feedback to climate change (Turetsky 2010). Peatlands that have been damaged by human activity are more vulnerable to climate-induced changes in hydrology and temperature, but suitable management strategies may make them more resilient to changes and help to stabilise the delivery of ecosystem services (Chapter 1).
This chapter describes the interactions between climate and peatlands in three sections. The first section explains how present climate influences peatlands, by documenting how climate limits peatland geographical extent globally, and how bioclimatic envelope models can predict peatland extent. We indicate how each type of peatland is linked to a specific climate range, and introduce the concept of how climate controls peatland ecosystem function and services. The second section looks into the past. It describes how peat preserves a record of past climates and environmental conditions that can be deciphered to reveal the history of peatland vegetation, hydrology and carbon accumulation changes in relation to past changes in climate. We highlight lessons that can be learned from the palaeo-record preserved in peat.
Peatlands have long been recognised as a high priority for protection under international and national wildlife laws and agreements. Over the last half century this protection has essentially been reactionary in the face of more widespread land management policy and market forces, which have encouraged damage to peatlands. This damage has been mainly to support the delivery of provisioning services, such as food, timber and pulp, or the widespread extraction of peat and oil. Across the world, peatlands of different types face a variety of pressures from land use and land-use change as well as pollution (e.g. atmospheric pollution on British blanket bogs), making them more susceptible to impacts of climate change. Within the general framework of international agreements on peatland conservation, each country has developed its own approach to tackling the threats with varying degrees of success. While established wildlife conservation policy has helped limit the extent of damage to peatlands in some countries, there is a need and opportunity for a stronger and more urgent public policy response to address the significant ongoing losses of peatland biodiversity and ecosystem services. The recognition of the multiple benefits that peatlands provide has presented new avenues to support sustainably managed peatlands, in addition to reducing peatland loss through active restoration (e.g. Bain et al. 2011; Joosten, Tapio-Biström and Tol 2012). This chapter presents an overview of the principal international and national policy drivers, with examples from selected countries across the world to highlight how new resources could be directed at wise use and conservation of peatlands.
Global overview of policy drivers for peatland conservation
While peatlands have been regarded as wastelands, and areas to be ‘improved’ for agriculture and forestry since the late eighteenth century (Chapter 2), they are now recognised for their wildlife and increasingly for their ecosystem services. Peatlands, therefore, feature in some of the world's highest-level environmental policies.
One of the earliest global agreements to recognise the importance of peatlands for protection was the Ramsar Convention (1971) that promoted the establishment and management of a network of protected wetlands. In 1996, it was reported that though peatlands represented 50% of the world's freshwater and terrestrial wetlands, less than 10% of the designated Ramsar sites had peatland as their dominant habitat (Chapter 15). Given continuing peatland loss and degradation, Contracting Parties set out guidelines to improve peatland protection (Ramsar 2003).
This narrative article is based on an analysis of 61 documents, mostly articles, of which 37 were peer-reviewed, including research studies, reviews, conceptual research and narratives of practice. Review findings are reported with specific reference to the Australian and New Zealand contexts in relation to the following topic categories: the presence of indigenous music in the curriculums of selected ‘new world’ countries, teacher education in indigenous performing arts, questions of curriculum design and programming, resource selection, activity design, and school and community relationships. Certain key themes emerged across these topics: the need for a greater emphasis on more culturally nuanced music teacher education in relation to indigenous musics; the critical importance of teaching indigenous music/arts contexts; song ownership; and the need for music educators and researchers to develop a critical stance towards their subject and discipline.