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In this study, we argue that foreign subsidiaries may benefit from the corporate strategies of multinational enterprises (MNEs) in different ways in terms of knowledge transfer and strategic flexibility. From this viewpoint, we explore the relationship between product diversification and financial performance of their subsidiaries under the condition of MNE geographic diversification. Using panel data on foreign subsidiaries in European countries from 2006 to 2011, we find a U-shaped relationship between product diversification and subsidiary performance and the joint effect of product and geographic diversification. Given the importance of transition economies in international business today, we conducted a subsample test contrasting the results based on the transitional (Central and Eastern European) versus Western European countries. The contrasting results provide important implications for other transition economies like China. We validate the relationship in several ways in our robustness tests.
The periodic dispersal and assembly of continental fragments has been an inherent feature of the continental crust. Based on the discovery of large-scale supercontinent cycle and the theory of plate tectonics, several supercontinents have been identified, such as Columbia/Nuna, Rodinia, Gondwana and Pangaea. Neoproterozoic magmatic events related to the break-up of Rodinia are globally well preserved. Although Neoproterozoic magmatic events were very weak in the North China Craton (NCC), they are crucial in reconstructing the geometries of the NCC and could facilitate the completion of the Neoproterozoic configuration of the supercontinent. In this study, c. 853–835 Ma magmatic rocks are identified in the western margin of the NCC. Precise zircon U–Pb age determination yields 206Pb/238U average ages of 835.5 ± 5.3 Ma (HL-39) and 853.7 ± 4.5 Ma (HL-30). In situ zircon Hf isotope compositions of the samples reveal that their parental magma was formed by the reworking of ancient crust evolved from Mesoproterozoic mantle. In summary, the discovery of Neoproterozoic magmatic rocks in the western margin of the NCC, and reported synchronous rocks in other parts of the NCC indicate that the NCC might be conjoined with the supercontinent Rodinia during the Neoproterozoic. This discovery is of significant help in unravelling the early Neoproterozoic history of the NCC and the evolution of the supercontinent Rodinia.
Abnormal calcium homeostasis has been associated with impaired glucose metabolism. However, the epidemiological evidence is controversial. We aimed to assess the association between circulating calcium levels and the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) or abnormal glucose homeostasis through conducting a systematic review and meta-analysis. Eligible studies were identified by searching electronic database (PubMed, Embase, and Google Scholar) and related references with de novo results from primary studies up to December 2018. A random-effects meta-analysis was performed to estimate the weighted relative risks (RRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for the associations. The search yielded 20 eligible publications with 8 cohort studies identified for the meta-analysis, which included a total of 89,165 participants. Comparing the highest to the lowest category of albumin-adjusted serum calcium, the pooled RR was 1.14 (95% CI, 1.05, 1.24) for T2DM (n=51,489). Similarly, serum total calcium was associated with incident T2DM (RR, 1.25; 95% CI, 1.10, 1.42) (n=64,502). Additionally, the adjusted RR for 1 mg/dL increments in albumin-adjusted serum calcium or serum total calcium levels was 1.16 (95% CI, 1.07, 1.27) and 1.19 (95% CI, 1.11, 1.28), respectively. The observed associations remained with the inclusion of a cohort study with ionized calcium as the exposure. However, data pooled from neither case-control (n=4) nor cross-sectional (n=8) studies manifested a significant correlation between circulating calcium and glucose homeostasis. In conclusion, accumulated data from the cohort studies suggest that higher circulating calcium levels are associated with an augmented risk of T2DM.
Concerns over food safety in China not only direct public attention to negative
incidents, but also trigger the government's scrutiny of implicated
firms, particularly MNCs. The question of how to repair legitimacy after media
coverage of negative incidents has become a critical issue for MNCs. Although
the factors for MNCs’ public crises have been identified, how local
contexts and mechanisms shape repair approaches remain unclear. To address this
research gap, we conducted a study of Walmart China's approaches
associated with two negative incidents across two regions. We found that the
negative incidents can be framed differently depending on the local
environment's unfavorability for MNCs. Specifically, the negative
framing gave rise to varying degrees of legitimacy loss and offered different
leeway for MNCs to repair their legitimacy. We also identified the varied
outcomes of different repair approaches. By revealing the linkages among local
context, framing, legitimacy repair, and its outcomes, our study contributes to
research on MNCs’ legitimacy management under institutional
complexity and underscores the China context for legitimacy maintenance. We also
offer insights that advance the institutional approach to legitimacy repair in
this context. Last, we reflect on the techniques for conducting qualitative
research in China.
A photoresponsive double-layer hydrogel has been developed, in which light-sensitive cinnamic moieties are grafted onto a polyacrylamide network to produce a photoresponsive layer and pure polyacrylamide formed the supporting layer. Ag nanoparticles were dispersed using in situ reduction on the photoresponsive layer to act as the catalyst. The as-fabricated hydrogel exhibits a shape memory effect and controllable catalytic behavior under an external light stimulus. When exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light at λ > 260 nm, the resulting cycloaddition of cinnamic moieties not only fix the hydrogel’s temporary shape, but also greatly slow down the catalytic reaction rate. After irradiated with UV light at λ < 260 nm, however, the newly formed crosslinking points are reversibly cleaved. This results in the shape recovery of the hydrogel to its permanent shape. At the same time, the catalytic reaction was greatly accelerated because of the facile diffusion of the reactants into the hydrogel.
From a coopetition perspective, we differentiate between a multinational enterprise's product-similar subsidiary network and product-different subsidiary network in a host country. We argue that the product-similar network will have a curvilinear (inverted U-shaped) effect on foreign subsidiary performance, whereas the product-different network will produce a monotonic (positive) effect. Moreover, we introduce host-country economic advantage and intangible resource of the subsidiary as moderators into the relationship between subsidiary network and performance. Using longitudinal panel data of foreign subsidiaries, we find evidence that when host-country economic advantage is large, and the level of intangible asset intensity is high, the inverted U-shaped effect of product-similar subsidiary network is less pronounced. Moreover, host-country economic advantage and intangible asset intensity both enhance the positive effect of product-different subsidiary network. However, the moderating effect of intangible asset intensity is opposite to our prediction.
La3+ doped yttrium iron garnet films have been grown on (111) oriented gadolinium gallium garnet substrates via Liquid phase epitaxy technique as a basic material for ISHE device fabrication. Pt as a material with a large spin hall angle was used as a spin detection layer. We investigated the dependence of the spin pumping effect on the power and frequency of the excitation microwaves in La:YIG/Pt bilayers by measuring the ISHE voltage. We demonstrated that the area under the ISHE curve(SISHE) across a wide power range had a nearly linear correlation with the input microwave power (Pin). The parameter SISHE can be used to describe the spin current energy in a Pt layer which can be a useful parameter for a microwave rectifier.
Health system reform is considered a tough issue worldwide. Great efforts have been made toward health system building and strengthening. However, it is still unclear which health system is appropriate for different countries. This study aimed to systematically compare the characteristics of the establishment periods between eighty-eight counties of National Health Service (NHS) and Social Health Insurance (SHI).
Forty-eight NHS countries and forty SHI countries with data availability were selected. The establishment years of current health systems and other eighteen indicators in economics, society, population and health during establishment periods were collected. Comparison between NHS and SHI was conducted by descriptive analysis of every indicator.
Most NHS countries were established during the cold war, while SHI had been set up since the cold war ended. The median of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, urbanization rate and aging rate of SHI were USD 1535 in current dollars, 58.2 percent and 9.8 percent, respectively; compared with USD 1387, 41.2 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively of NHS. NHS countries had a smaller total population, lower mortality rate and elderly dependency ratio, while the birth rate and children's dependency ratio were higher. SHI countries showed a higher life expectancy and lower mortality rate in infants and children. NHS countries spent less in total health expenditure and a lower proportion of GDP. The median health expenditure per capita of SHI and NHS were USD 188 and USD 131 in current dollars, respectively. There was little difference among maternal mortality rates, and public and private health expenditure proportions.
NHS and SHI countries had different characteristics during the health system establishment periods. NHS was established earlier than SHI overall, so that SHI revealed higher levels in economic and social development. Health outcomes of NHS countries were slightly lower than SHI ones, while health expenditure was more in SHI countries. Specific social, economic, demographic and health conditions should be considered when countries are building their own health systems.
Living Caprini are dominant bovids in the pan-Tibetan area that are strongly adapted to dry steppe and high-mountain meadow habitats. Some taxa with Holarctic distributions, e.g., Ovis Linnaeus, 1758, were thought to originate on the Tibetan Plateau and subsequently dispersed elsewhere, which was depicted as an ‘out of Tibet’ story. However, except for some information on a stem caprine assemblage from the Qaidam Basin, the early evolution of Caprini around the Tibetan Plateau is poorly known. Here, we report new material of Olonbulukia tsaidamensis Bohlin, 1937, which was a member of this stem caprine assemblage, from the Wuzhong region, northern China, confirming the similarity of the Wuzhong Fauna and ‘Qaidam Fauna.’ Based on a biometric study of horncores from the ‘Qaidam’ and Wuzhong faunas, we recognize six taxa from this stem caprine assemblage: O. tsaidamensis, O. sp., Qurliqnoria cheni Bohlin, 1937, Tossunnoria pseudibex Bohlin, 1937, ?Protoryx cf. P. enanus Köhler, 1987, and cf. Pachytragus sp. Among these taxa, Q. cheni and T. pseudibex are probably related to some extant Tibetan endemic species, e.g., the Tibetan antelope, Pantholops hodgsonii (Abel, 1826), and the Himalayan tahr, Hemitragus jemlahicus (Smith, 1826). Others might be ancestral to the Turolian caprine assemblages and even possibly gave rise to the extant Caprina. This work reveals an early radiation of stem caprines along the northern side of the rising Tibetan Plateau and indicates a mixed pattern of pan-Tibetan stem caprine evolution prior to their dispersal out of the Tibetan Plateau.
To assess the effect of famine exposure during early life on dietary patterns, chronic diseases, and the interaction effect between famine exposure and dietary patterns on chronic diseases in adulthood.
Cross-sectional study. Dietary patterns were derived by factor analysis. Multivariate quantile regression and log-binomial regression were used to evaluate the impact of famine exposure on dietary patterns, chronic diseases and the interaction effect between famine exposure and dietary patterns on chronic diseases, respectively.
Adults aged 45–60 years (n 939).
‘Healthy’, ‘high-fat and high-salt’, ‘Western’ and ‘traditional Chinese’ dietary patterns were identified. Early-childhood and mid-childhood famine exposure were remarkably correlated with high intake of the traditional Chinese dietary pattern. Compared with the non-exposed group (prevalence ratio (PR); 95 % CI), early-childhood (3·13; 1·43, 6·84) and mid-childhood (2·37; 1·05, 5·36) exposed groups showed an increased PR for diabetes, and the early-childhood (2·07; 1·01, 4·25) exposed group showed an increased PR for hypercholesterolaemia. Additionally, relative to the combination of non-exposed group and low-dichotomous high-fat and high-salt dietary pattern, the combination of famine exposure in early life and high-dichotomous high-fat and high-salt dietary pattern in adulthood had higher PR for diabetes (4·95; 1·66, 9·05) and hypercholesterolaemia (3·71; 1·73, 7·60), and significant additive interactions were observed.
Having suffered the Chinese famine in childhood might affect an individual’s dietary habits and health status, and the joint effect between famine and harmful dietary pattern could have serious consequences on later-life health outcomes.
Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) are a major worldwide public-health problem, but less data are available on the long-term trends of HAIs and antimicrobial use in Eastern China. This study describes the prevalence and long-term trends of HAIs and antimicrobial use in a tertiary care teaching hospital in Hefei, Anhui, China from 2010 to 2017 based on annual point-prevalence surveys. A total of 12 505 inpatients were included; 600 HAIs were recorded in 533 patients, with an overall prevalence of 4.26% and a frequency of 4.80%. No evidence was found for an increasing or decreasing trend in prevalence of HAI over 8 years (trend χ2 = 2.15, P = 0.143). However, significant differences in prevalence of HAI were evident between the surveys (χ2 = 21.14, P < 0.001). The intensive care unit had the highest frequency of HAIs (24.36%) and respiratory tract infections accounted for 62.50% of all cases; Escherichia coli was the most common pathogen (16.67%). A 44.13% prevalence of antimicrobial use with a gradually decreasing trend over time was recorded. More attention should be paid to potential high-risk clinical departments and HAI types with further enhancement of rational antimicrobial use.
A direct prejudgement strategy that takes the diffraction ring as the analysis target is put forward to predict hot images induced by defects of tens of microns in the main amplifier section of high power laser systems. Analysis of hot-image formation process shows that the hot image can be precisely calculated with the extracted intensity oscillation of the diffraction ring on the front surface of the nonlinear plate. The gradient direction matching (GDM) method is adopted to detect diffraction rings. Recognition of simulated diffraction rings shows that it is feasible to directly prejudge hot images induced by those closely spaced defects and the defects that are far apart from each other. Image compression and cluster analysis are utilized to optimize the performance of the GDM method in recognizing actually collected diffraction images. Results show that hot images induced by defects of tens of microns can be directly prejudged without redundant information.
The neuropsychological origins of negative syndrome of schizophrenia remain elusive. Evidence from behavioural studies, which utilised emotion-inducing pictures to elicit motivated behaviour generally reported that that schizophrenia patients experienced similar affective experience as healthy individuals but failed to translate emotional salience to motivated behaviour, a phenomenon called emotion–behaviour decoupling. However, a few studies have examined emotion–behaviour decoupling in non-psychotic high-risk populations, who are relatively unaffected by medication effects.
In this study, we examined the nature and extent of emotion–behaviour decoupling in in three independent samples (65 schizophrenia patients v. 63 controls; 40 unaffected relatives v. 45 controls; and 32 individuals with social anhedonia v. 32 controls). We administered an experimental task to examine their affective experience and its coupling with behaviour, using emotion-inducing slides, and allowed participants to alter stimulus exposure using button-pressing to seek pleasure or avoid aversion.
Schizophrenia patients reported similar affective experiences as their controls, while their unaffected relatives and individuals with high levels of social anhedonia exhibited attenuated affective experiences, in particular in the arousal aspect. Compared with their respective control groups, all of the three groups showed emotion–behaviour decoupling.
Our findings support that both genetically and behaviourally high-risk groups exhibit emotion–behaviour decoupling. The familial association apparently supports its role as a putative trait marker for schizophrenia.
This paper is devoted to numerical methods for mean-field stochastic differential equations (MSDEs). We first develop the mean-field Itô formula and mean-field Itô-Taylor expansion. Then based on the new formula and expansion, we propose the Itô-Taylor schemes of strong order γ and weak order η for MSDEs, and theoretically obtain the convergence rate γ of the strong Itô-Taylor scheme, which can be seen as an extension of the well-known fundamental strong convergence theorem to the mean-field SDE setting. Finally some numerical examples are given to verify our theoretical results.
A lattice Boltzmann method is utilized for governing equations which control phase separation of binary fluids with reversible chemical reaction in presence of a shear flow in this paper. We first present the morphology modeling of sheared binary fluids with reversible chemical reaction. We then validate the model by taking the unsheared binary fluids as an example. It is found that the results fit well with the references. The paper shows structures of the sheared system and gives the detailed analysis for the morphology of sheared binary fluids with reversible chemical reaction. The phase separation of the domain structures with different chemical reaction rates is discussed. Through simulations of the sheared binary fluids, two interesting phenomena are observed, which do not exist in a binary mixture without reversible chemical reaction. One is that the same results appear in both low and high viscosity, and the other is that the domain growth exponent with both low and high viscosities presents wave due to the competition of the viscosity and phase separation. In addition, we find that the finite size effects resulting in the growth exponent decreasing appear faster than that of the unsheared blend at a large time when the size of domains is comparable with the lattice size.
Spatial indexing technology is widely used in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and spatial databases. As a data retrieval technology, spatial indexing is becoming increasingly important in the big-data age. The purpose of this study is to propose a unified indexing strategy for the mixed data of a future marine GIS. First, data organisation of the system is described. Second, the display condition of each type of data is introduced. These conditions are the basis for the construction of a unified indexing structure. Third, a unified indexing structure for mixed data is presented. The construction process and the search method of the indexing structure are described. Finally, we implement the indexing strategy in our system “Automotive Intelligent Chart Three-dimensional Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems” (AIC 3D ECDIS). Our strategy can provide fast and integrated data retrieval. The spatial indexing strategy we propose breaks through the limitation of data types in our system. It can also be applied in other GIS systems. With the advent of the big-data age, mixed data indexing will become more and more important.
A need exists for public health strategies regarding extreme weather disasters, which in recent years have become more frequent. This study aimed to understand the public’s perception of extreme cold and its related health risks, which may provide detailed information for public health preparedness during an extreme cold weather event.
To evaluate public perceptions of cold-related health risk and to identify vulnerable groups, we collected responses from 891 participants in a face-to-face survey in Harbin, China. Public perception was measured by calculating the score for each perception question.
Locals perceived that extreme cold weather and related health risks were serious, but thought they could not avoid these risks. The significant difference in perceived acceptance level between age groups suggested that the elderly are a “high health risk, low risk perception” group, meaning that they are relatively more vulnerable owing to their high susceptibility and low awareness of the health risks associated with extreme cold weather.
The elderly should be a priority in risk communication and health protective interventions. This study demonstrated that introducing risk perception into the public health field can identify vulnerable groups with greater needs, which may improve the decision-making of public health intervention strategies. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2017;11:417–421)
The earliest fossil record of animal biomineralization occurs in the latest Ediacaran Period (c. 550 Ma). Cloudina and Sinotubulites are two important tubular taxa among these earliest skeletal fossils. The evolutionary fate of Cloudina-type fossils across the Ediacaran–Cambrian transition, however, remains poorly understood. Here we report a multi-layered tubular microfossil Feiyanella manica gen. et sp. nov. from a phosphorite interval of the lowest Cambrian Kuanchuanpu Formation, southern Shaanxi Province, South China. This newly discovered fossil is a conical tube with a ‘funnel-in-funnel’ construction, showing profound morphological similarities to Cloudina and Conotubus. On the other hand, the outer few layers, and particularly the outermost layer, of Feiyanella tubes are regularly to irregularly corrugated, a feature strikingly similar to the variably folded/wrinkled tube walls of Sinotubulites. The Feiyanella tubes additionally exhibit two orders of dichotomous branching, similar to branching structures reported occasionally in Cloudina and possibly indicative of asexual reproduction. Owing to broad similarities in tube morphology, tube wall construction and features presumably indicative of asexual reproduction, Cloudina, Conotubus, Sinotubulites and the here described Feiyanella may thus constitute a monophyletic group traversing the Ediacaran–Cambrian boundary. The tube construction and palaeoecological strategy of Feiyanella putatively indicate evolutionary continuity in morphology and palaeoecology of benthic metazoan communities across the Ediacaran–Cambrian transition.