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Household surveys are one of the most commonly used tools for generating insight into rural communities. Despite their prevalence, few studies comprehensively evaluate the quality of data derived from farm household surveys. We critically evaluated a series of standard reported values and indicators that are captured in multiple farm household surveys, and then quantified their credibility, consistency and, thus, their reliability. Surprisingly, even variables which might be considered ‘easy to estimate’ had instances of non-credible observations. In addition, measurements of maize yields and land owned were found to be less reliable than other stationary variables. This lack of reliability has implications for monitoring food security status, poverty status and the land productivity of households. Despite this rather bleak picture, our analysis also shows that if the same farm households are followed over time, the sample sizes needed to detect substantial changes are in the order of hundreds of surveys, and not in the thousands. Our research highlights the value of targeted and systematised household surveys and the importance of ongoing efforts to improve data quality. Improvements must be based on the foundations of robust survey design, transparency of experimental design and effective training. The quality and usability of such data can be further enhanced by improving coordination between agencies, incorporating mixed modes of data collection and continuing systematic validation programmes.
The objective was to compare the performance of the updated Charlson comorbidity index (uCCI) and classical CCI (cCCI) in predicting 30-day mortality in patients with Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia (SAB). All cases of SAB in patients aged ⩾14 years identified at the Microbiology Unit were included prospectively and followed. Comorbidity was evaluated using the cCCI and uCCI. Relevant variables associated with SAB-related mortality, along with cCCI or uCCI scores, were entered into multivariate logistic regression models. Global model fit, model calibration and predictive validity of each model were evaluated and compared. In total, 257 episodes of SAB in 239 patients were included (mean age 74 years; 65% were male). The mean cCCI and uCCI scores were 3.6 (standard deviation, 2.4) and 2.9 (2.3), respectively; 161 (63%) cases had cCCI score ⩾3 and 89 (35%) cases had uCCI score ⩾4. Sixty-five (25%) patients died within 30 days. The cCCI score was not related to mortality in any model, but uCCI score ⩾4 was an independent factor of 30-day mortality (odds ratio, 1.98; 95% confidence interval, 1.05–3.74). The uCCI is a more up-to-date, refined and parsimonious prognostic mortality score than the cCCI; it may thus serve better than the latter in the identification of patients with SAB with worse prognoses.
This paper discusses some of the unique aspects of the interactions of livestock with the natural resources base. It argues the nature of these interactions make the use of a systems approach of particular importance when planning and executing livestock research if it is to be of any relevance to farmers in developing countries. The key issues are illustrated in two contrasting case studies.
In Nepal, shifts in land use patterns have led to marked changes in the availability and use of fodder resources. Farmers indicate that they are no longer able to use these optimally. Fodder from at least 90 different types of tree (some of which have yet to be properly classified botanically) are used to supplement the diets of buffalo, cattle and goats during dry seasons when food is in short supply. The nutritive value of each of these is affected by a wide range of management and environmental factors. Furthermore, diet selectivity means that fractions consumed differ markedly amongst both tree species and classes of livestock. It is clearly not feasible for researchers to evaluate this diversity using existing in vitro or in vivo indicators of nutritive value. Initial studies suggest that this variability is implicitly catered for in farmers' own assessments of relative nutritive values. A mechanistic understanding of this indigenous technical knowledge and the development of appropriate techniques for integrating it with models of the biological responses of animals to nutrients might, therefore, allow more effective assessment of strategies for tree fodder utilization.
Highland dairy systems in the humid tropics of Costa Rica (3000+ mm/year rainfall) could be very productive but suffer from a substantial dependence on imported inputs. Concentrate use is very high causing substantial underutilization of grazed pasture (the local resource), which is available year-round under these high-rainfall conditions. Over-supplementation with protein, which is the most expensive nutrient in the diet, at levels in excess of 200% of the requirement has been reported widely in these regions. Farmers want new strategies that enable them to manage their land and other resources in an alternative way, in order to be less dependent on grains and other imports. A decision-support system based on simulation and multiple criteria models representing a dairy farm has enabled the design and development of such strategies. Using this approach, farmers' objectives can be incorporated with a holistic understanding of the farming system in terms of management practices that will permit demand-driven animal production research at the farm level.
The paper presents the main findings of a set of comparative milk sector surveys carried out in Kathmandu (Nepal), Nairobi (Kenya) and Santa Cruz (Bolivia). The surveys assessed changes in demand, supply and marketing of milk and milk products over a ten to fifteen year period to 2001. The paper considers demand for milk and milk products, changes in milk supply and trading pathways, the policy frameworks, changes in demand and market share, and growth in the sector and poverty reduction. The policy implications for propoor development of the milk sector are discussed.
Extrapolate (EX-ante Tool for RAnking POLicy AlTErnatives) is a decision support tool to assess the impact of policy measures on different target groups. It is designed to serve as a “filter” that, given the broad characteristics of the population, allows the user to sift through different policy measures to assess ex ante the broad potential impacts of these before deciding to look at particular policy options in more detail. Extrapolate models, in a very simple way, the impact of changes on constraints facing potential beneficiary groups, and how these may affect outcomes and their livelihood status. Extrapolate now makes use of mapping facilities from another decision-support tool, PRIMAS (Poverty Reduction Intervention Mapping in Agricultural Systems), that allows the user to match characteristics of particular technological options and constraints with the spatial characteristics of particular target groups in the landscape.
IR spectroscopy in the range 12–230 μm with the SPace IR telescope for Cosmology and Astrophysics (SPICA) will reveal the physical processes governing the formation and evolution of galaxies and black holes through cosmic time, bridging the gap between the James Webb Space Telescope and the upcoming Extremely Large Telescopes at shorter wavelengths and the Atacama Large Millimeter Array at longer wavelengths. The SPICA, with its 2.5-m telescope actively cooled to below 8 K, will obtain the first spectroscopic determination, in the mid-IR rest-frame, of both the star-formation rate and black hole accretion rate histories of galaxies, reaching lookback times of 12 Gyr, for large statistically significant samples. Densities, temperatures, radiation fields, and gas-phase metallicities will be measured in dust-obscured galaxies and active galactic nuclei, sampling a large range in mass and luminosity, from faint local dwarf galaxies to luminous quasars in the distant Universe. Active galactic nuclei and starburst feedback and feeding mechanisms in distant galaxies will be uncovered through detailed measurements of molecular and atomic line profiles. The SPICA’s large-area deep spectrophotometric surveys will provide mid-IR spectra and continuum fluxes for unbiased samples of tens of thousands of galaxies, out to redshifts of z ~ 6.
The 0.5m refracting telescope of the Van Vleck Observatory has been active in the determination of trigonometric parallaxes since its first observations in 1922. Its lenses were ground by C.A.R. Lundin of the Alvan Clark Co. for photographic use. Coma was minimized across the field and vignetting was also kept to a minimum. Partly as a consequence the focal curve is very steep in the blue and green regions of the spectrum, as is shown in Fig. 1. A Wratten No. 12 minus blue filter is used to filter out all wavelengths to the blue of about 5200 å. The region between 5200 å and 6000 å is very flat with the focal plane varying over a range of about one millimeter. Towards the red region it steepens, although not enough to impair images on photographic plates of emulsion types 103a-D and IIIa-F, the two in widespread use in recent years.
As a first step to study the influence that rotation has in the evolution of the most massive stars, we obtained the projected rotational velocity (v sin i) of a sample of OB stars from clusters and associations. We found that most of our stars present v sin i lower than 200 km/s.
GOLF is designed to measure the Global Oscillations of the integrated solar disk, by determining the line-of-sight velocity of the photosphere as a function of time, over the frequency range 10−7 to 10−2 Hz.
L’œuvre entreprise il y a cinquante ans par l’ancien Comité Permanent de la Carte du Ciel n’a pas été intégralement accomplie. Si certaines de ses parties peuvent être considérées comme terminées, d’autres ont été perdues de vue ou abandonnées.
La tâche de la Commission de la Carte du Ciel doit être maintenant d’examiner, à la lueur de cinquante années de progrès scientifiques, et en tenant compte du travail déjà fait, quelles sont celles des anciennes recommandations du Comité Permanent dont il y a lieu de poursuivre l’exécution.
(1)Report on the progress of the FK3 catalogue, and the volume of apparent places of the stars in this catalogue.
(2)At the meeting in Paris it was suggested that the value of the Gaussian constant k should be fixed, and the President was asked to consult people known to be interested. As complete agreement appears to have been reached, the following resolution will be moved: “That the value of the Gaussian constant k shall be taken as 0-01720 20989 50000, the unit of time being the mean solar day for 1900·0”
At the 1932 meeting three proposals before the Commission were referred to the directors of the national ephemerides (Trans. I.A.U. 4, 222, 282).
(1)That the equation of time be given with the same sign in all almanacs.
(2)The question of duplicate printing.
(3)The possibility of adopting a uniform system for star positions.
Although the directors have discussed these by correspondence, they wish to take the opportunity of verbal discussion in Paris before presenting their final report. The proposal that duplicate printing of apparent places of stars should be eliminated has been favourably received. A joint meeting with Commission 8 is being arranged for the purpose of discussing the selection and positions of future fundamental stars; at present the general trend of opinion favours the adoption of the FK3 of the Berliner Jahrbuch.
Depuis la réunion de Cambridge, en 1932, la Commission de la Carte du Ciel a vu, avec un profond regret, disparaître son vénérable et eminent Président d’Honneur, M. Benjamin Bafflaud, artisan de la première heure de l’œuvre de la Carte du Ciel. Il était l’un des rares survivants du Congrès initial de Paris en 1887. Comme directeur de l’Observatoire de Toulouse d’abord, de l’Observatoire de Paris ensuite, il avait pris aux travaux une grande part personnelle; comme Président du Comité international permanent, il avait été, pendant de longues années, l’ordonnateur et l’animateur de l’œuvre. Il n’avait jamais cessé de s’en occuper.
Depuis le dernier Rapport, la Commission de la Carte du Ciel a été durement et douloureusement éprouvée par la mort imprévue de son eminent Président H. H. Turner. Il laisse parmi ses collègues de profonds et unanimes regrets.
Il s’était ardemment dévoué à ses fonctions de Président et, plus particulièrement, à l’achèvement du Catalogue photographique, auquel, sous sa direction, l’Observatoire de l’Université d’Oxford avait déjà pris une grande part. Sous son impulsion, et souvent avec le concours de son Observatoire, des Zones en retard avaient accompli d’importants progrès. Sa fin prématurée ne lui aura pas permis de voir le Catalogue terminé. Après comme avant la mort de Turner, la poursuite de ce but, qui lui était cher, demeure la tâche la plus urgente.
This spatial experiment is under construction and has been defined as a 2 years mission on board SOHO, a satellite dedicated to the Sun which will be launched in mid 95. The main objectives are the detection of solar low degree acoustic modes and solar gravity modes for improving our knowledge of the solar nuclear region.
Background: Perinatal stroke causes hemiparetic cerebral palsy. Constraint therapy (CIMT) improves function in congenital hemiparesis and adult stroke. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) may improve function in adult stroke. The two have not been tested in perinatal stroke. Methods: PLASTIC CHAMPS (www.clinicaltrials.gov/NCT01189058) was a controlled factorial trial of rTMS and CIMT in perinatal-stroke hemiparesis. Children 6-18 years participated in a 2 week peer-supported motor learning camp, randomized to daily inhibitory rTMS (1200 stimulations, contralesional M1), CIMT, both or neither. Primary outcomes were Assisting Hand Assessment (AHA) and Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM) at 1, 8, and 24 weeks. Quality-of-life, safety and tolerability were evaluated. Change was assessed across treatment groups over time (linear mixed effects model). Results: All forty-five subjects completed the trial (median 11.4yrs). COPM scores increased >100% with maximal gains at 6 months (p<0.002). Addition of rTMS and/or CIMT doubled the chances of clinically significant gains. Combined rTMS+CIMT resulted in larger AHA gains at all time points (6 months p=0.006). CIMT or rTMS alone had more modest effects. Neither treatment decreased function in either hand. Procedures were well tolerated. Conclusions: Children with hemiparesis participating in intensive, psychosocial rehabilitation programs perceive marked increases in function. Non-invasive brain stimulation may enhance motor learning therapy in perinatal stroke hemiparesis.
The Solar Orbiter is the next solar physics mission of the European Space Agency, ESA, in collaboration with NASA, with a launch planned in 2018. The spacecraft is designed to approach the Sun to within 0.28 AU at perihelion of a highly eccentric orbit. The proximity with the Sun will also allow its observation at uniformly high resolution at EUV and visible wavelengths. Such observations are central for learning more about the magnetic coupling of the solar atmosphere. At a later phase in the mission the spacecraft will leave the ecliptic and study the enigmatic poles of the Sun from a heliographic latitude of up to 33○.
A central instrument of Solar Orbiter} is the Polarimetric and Helioseismic Imager, SO/PHI. It will do full Stokes imaging in the Landé g = 2.5 Fe I 617.3 nm line. It is composed of two telescopes, a full-disk telescope and a high-resolution telescope, that will allow observations at a resolution as high as 200 km on the solar surface. SO/PHI will also be the first solar polarimeter to leave the Sun-Earth line, opening up new possibilities, such as stereoscopic polarimetry (besides stereoscopic imaging of the photosphere and stereoscopic helioseismology). Finally, SO/PHI will have a unique view of the solar poles, allowing not just more precise and exact measurements of the polar field than possible so far, but also enabling us to follow the dynamics of individual magnetic features at high latitudes and to determine solar surface and sub-surface flows right up to the poles.
In this paper an introduction to the science goals and the capabilities of SO/PHI will be given, as well as a brief overview of the instrument and of the current status of its development.
The B fields in OB stars (BOB) survey is an ESO large programme collecting spectropolarimetric observations for a large number of early-type stars in order to study the occurrence rate, properties, and ultimately the origin of magnetic fields in massive stars. As of July 2014, a total of 98 objects were observed over 20 nights with FORS2 and HARPSpol. Our preliminary results indicate that the fraction of magnetic OB stars with an organised, detectable field is low. This conclusion, now independently reached by two different surveys, has profound implications for any theoretical model attempting to explain the field formation in these objects. We discuss in this contribution some important issues addressed by our observations (e.g., the lower bound of the field strength) and the discovery of some remarkable objects.
At present, it is well established that previously accepted mass-loss rates (Ṁ) of luminous OB stars may be overestimated when clumping is neglected. Our Herschel/PACS Far-Infrared (Far-IR) observations of a set of OB stars allow us to improve our knowledge of clumping stratification, constraining clumping properties in intermediate wind regions. In this work, better sampled clumping structure estimates are provided for ι Ori, ε Ori and ξ Per as well as an initial estimate of the clumping properties of the wind from τ Sco. These observations will allow us to obtain reliable mass-loss rates and improve our understanding of the wind physics.