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The 'third wave' of variation study, spearheaded by the sociolinguist Penelope Eckert, places its focus on social meaning, or the inferences that can be drawn about speakers based on how they talk. While social meaning has always been a concern of modern sociolinguistics, its aims and assumptions have not been explicitly spelled out until now. This pioneering book provides a comprehensive overview of the central tenets of variation study, examining several components of dialects, and considering language use in a wide variety of cultural and linguistic contexts. Each chapter, written by a leader in the field, posits a unique theoretical claim about social meaning and presents new empirical data to shed light on the topic at hand. The volume makes a case for why attending to social meaning is vital to the study of variation while also providing a foundation from which variationists can productively engage with social meaning.
The Covid-19 crisis necessitated rapid adoption of remote consultations across National Health Service (NHS) child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS). This study aimed to understand practitioners’ experiences of rapid implementation of remote consultations across CAMHS in one NHS trust in the east of England. Data were collected through a brief questionnaire documenting clinicians’ experiences following remote delivery of services. The questionnaire began before ‘lockdown’ and focused on assessment consultations (n = 102) as part of a planned move to virtual assessment. As the roll-out of remote consultations was extended at lockdown, we extended the questionnaire to include all remote clinical contacts (n = 202). Despite high levels of initial concern, clinicians’ reports were positive overall; importantly, however, their experiences varied by team. When restrictions on face-to-face working are lifted, a blended approach of remote and face-to-face service delivery is recommended to optimise access and capacity while retaining effective and safe care.
Electron blocks are typically composed of a low melting point alloy (LMPA), which is poured into an insert frame containing a manually placed Styrofoam aperture negative used to define the desired field shape. Current implementations of the block fabrication process involve numerous steps which are subjective and prone to user error. Occasionally, bowing of the sides of the insert frame is observed, resulting in premature frame decommissioning. Recent works have investigated the feasibility of utilising 3D printing technology to replace the conventional electron block fabrication workflow; however, these approaches involved long print times, were not compatible with commonly used cadmium-free LMPAs, and did not address the problem of insert frame bowing. In this work, we sought to develop a new 3D printing technique that would remedy these issues.
Materials and Methods:
Electron cutout negatives and alignment jigs were printed using Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene, which does not warp at the high temperatures associated with molten cadmium-free alloys. The accuracy of the field shape produced by electron blocks fabricated using the 3D printed negatives was assessed using Gafchromic film and beam profiler measurements. As a proof-of-concept, electron blocks with off-axis apertures, as well as complex multi-aperture blocks to be used for passive electron beam intensity modulation, were also created.
Film and profiler measurements of field size were in excellent agreement with the values calculated using the Eclipse treatment planning system, showing less than a 1% difference in line profile full-width at half-maximum. The multi-aperture electron blocks produced fields with intensity modulation ≤3.2% of the theoretically predicted value. Use of the 3D printed alignment jig – which has contours designed to match those of the insert frame – was found to reduce the amount of frame bowing by factors of 1.8 and 2.1 in the lateral and superior–inferior directions, respectively.
The 3D printed ABS negatives generated with our technique maintain their spatial accuracy even at the higher temperatures associated with cadmium-free LMPA. The negatives typically take between 1 and 2 hours to print and have a material cost of approximately $2 per patient.
Adolescent diet, physical activity and nutritional status are generally known to be sub-optimal. This is an introduction to a special issue of papers devoted to exploring factors affecting diet and physical activity in adolescents, including food insecure and vulnerable groups.
Eight settings including urban, peri-urban and rural across sites from five different low- and middle-income countries.
Focus groups with adolescents and caregivers carried out by trained researchers.
Our results show that adolescents, even in poor settings, know about healthy diet and lifestyles. They want to have energy, feel happy, look good and live longer, but their desire for autonomy, a need to ‘belong’ in their peer group, plus vulnerability to marketing exploiting their aspirations, leads them to make unhealthy choices. They describe significant gender, culture and context-specific barriers. For example, urban adolescents had easy access to energy dense, unhealthy foods bought outside the home, whereas junk foods were only beginning to permeate rural sites. Among adolescents in Indian sites, pressure to excel in exams meant that academic studies were squeezing out physical activity time.
Interventions to improve adolescents’ diets and physical activity levels must therefore address structural and environmental issues and influences in their homes and schools, since it is clear that their food and activity choices are the product of an interacting complex of factors. In the next phase of work, the Transforming Adolescent Lives through Nutrition consortium will employ groups of adolescents, caregivers and local stakeholders in each site to develop interventions to improve adolescent nutritional status.
In March 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) as a pandemic. Adolescence and early adulthood are peak times for the onset of mental health difficulties. Exposure to a pandemic during this vulnerable developmental period places young people at significant risk of negative psychological experiences. The objective of this research was to summarise existing evidence on the potential impact of a pandemic on the mental health of 12–25 year olds.
A rapid review of the published peer-reviewed literature, published between 1985 and 2020, using PsycINFO (Proquest) and Medline (Proquest) was conducted. Narrative synthesis was used across studies to identify key themes and concepts.
This review found 3,359 papers, which was reduced to 12 papers for data extraction. Results regarding the prevalence of psychological difficulties in youth were mixed, with some studies finding this group experience heightened distress during an infectious disease outbreak, and others finding no age differences or higher distress among adults. Gender, coping, self-reported physical health and adoption of precautionary measures appear to play a role in moderating the psychological impact of an infectious disease outbreak. Most studies were conducted after the peak of an epidemic/pandemic or in the recovery period.
More longitudinal research with young people, particularly adolescents in the general population, before and during the early stages of an infectious disease outbreak is needed to obtain a clear understanding of how best to support young people during these events.
For as long as the EU has had a policy on climate change, transport has stood out as an anomalous sector. Between 1995 and 2004, greenhouse gas emissions across the EU declined by 5 per cent but grew by 26 per cent in the transport sector (COM (2007) 856: 2). As noted in Chapter 4, the sector’s position is still anomalous today. Indeed, as the EU’s climate policies have expanded, so too has the perception that the EU’s ability to decarbonise – which by the 2000s had been elevated to one of its most significant strategic ambitions – may well stand or fall on the basis of what is achieved in the transport sector, and especially the road transport sector (ten Brink, 2010: 180–181), which today still accounts for around 70 per cent of overall transport emissions (COM (2016) 501: 2).
Policy designers are seeking to adopt more durable climate policies that not only endure but remain influential over the long term. Amongst target groups and other relevant actors, such policies seek to nurture a belief that deep decarbonisation will happen and that they should prepare for that possibility rather than working to prevent it. Schattschneider (1935), who we quoted at the start of Chapter 1, implied that some policies become durable because they foster and sustain their own political support base through processes of positive policy feedback but may remain vulnerable to negative policy feedbacks that render them fragile.
Chapter 3 described the design space in which EU climate policies have emerged. It revealed an ongoing game of design that has simultaneously worked across and involved many different actors, governance levels and policy elements. One of the most significant policy design dynamics has been the one connecting programmatic goals and specific policy designs. In general, longer-term goals set at EU level to match international-level processes centred on the UNFCCC have been gradually back-filled with policy programmes and policy instruments.
Policy designers are actively searching for more durable climate policy designs to deliver deep decarbonisation. In Chapter 1, we noted that the existing distribution of resources and actor preferences in this area means that durable policies have proven immensely difficult to design in the past. Many difficult design choices and dilemmas will need to be confronted to ensure that future policies are more durable and more effective. These choices relate to the packaging together of various internal elements to produce an overall design that generates and is in turn sustained by positive policy feedback.
The concept of emissions trading has been actively debated by economists since the 1960s (Dales, 1968; Voss, 2007). In the 1990s, it began to attract the attention of large businesses in the EU, who were eager to investigate whether it offered a politically more palatable alternative to the Commission’s default policy instrument – regulation. By the late 1990s – and buoyed by growing industry support – a small number of Member States began to adopt their own greenhouse gas trading schemes at the national level to bolster their existing policy instrument mixes which, at the time, were also heavily reliant on regulation and, in some cases, voluntary agreements (Wurzel et al., 2013). The early 2000s were a period of intense activity for EU climate and energy policy, much of it directed at implementing the EU’s increasingly ambitious long-term emission reduction goals (see Chapter 3). Internationally, emissions trading had been included in the recently ratified Kyoto Protocol. With other policy instrument options such as an EU carbon/energy tax seemingly unavailable, the Commission seized the opportunity to create an EU-wide trading system.
The use of biofuel as a type of renewable energy dates back to the dawn of the global car industry in the nineteenth century. The attractiveness of biofuels derives from their ability to function as a drop-in alternative to fossils fuels such as petrol and diesel. According to the International Energy Agency, if the world is to stay within 2 °C of warming, annual production of transport biofuels must treble between 2017 and 2030 (Raval, 2018). The promotion of renewable energy has been actively discussed in the EU for many decades. But in the late 1990s, a period when EU climate and energy policies were evolving rapidly (see Chapter 3), the EU did not have a coherent, Europe-wide policy to promote the use of biofuels. So, the Commission began to prepare the ground, formulating fresh proposals for an EU-level policy to ramp up domestic production and use. The transport sector was an obvious target, the assumption being that from a technological perspective, greater biofuel use would not be overly disruptive.
Following the landmark Paris agreement, policy makers are under pressure to adopt policies that rapidly deliver deep, society-wide decarbonisation. Deep decarbonisation requires more durable policies, but not enough is known about if and how they actually emerge. This book provides the first systematic analysis of the determinants of policy durability in three high-profile areas: biofuel production, car transport, and industrial emissions. It breaks new ground by exploring how key European Union climate policies have shaped their own durability and their ability to stimulate supportive political dynamics in society. It combines state-of-the-art policy theories with empirical accounts of landmark political events such as 'Dieselgate' and the campaign against 'dirty' biofuels, to offer a fresh understanding of how and why policy makers set about packaging together different elements of policy. By shining new light on an important area of contemporary policy making, it reveals a rich agenda for academic researchers and policy makers.
Climate change is often described as a wicked policy problem par excellence. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has made the scientific case for cutting greenhouse gas emissions to effectively zero by the middle of this century (‘net zero’ emissions), most recently in its 2018 special report on the most likely impacts of a temperature rise of 1.5°C (IPCC, 2018: 1). That report effectively underlined the need for ‘rapid, far reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society’ (IPCC, 2018: 1). The economic rationale for adopting such a radically different trajectory of human development is well known. So why – to paraphrase Nicholas Stern (2015), one of the world’s leading climate economists – is the world still waiting for deep and rapid decarbonisation to occur?