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This article explores the representation of alcohol on East German television, radio and film in the 1960s and 1970s. It analyses the state media's attempts to strike a balance between preaching moderation in the name of public health and co-opting the cultural legacy of beer, particularly for working-class men. The attempt to accomplish both goals simultaneously resulted in a seemingly contradictory programme of public messaging that reveals efforts by the socialist leadership to calibrate their vision of a modern socialist future to accommodate the persistent power of a cultural commodity in Germany.
Over the last three decades, transnational certification standards have proliferated to fill perceived ‘governance gaps’ in developing countries. Transnational non-governmental organisations and private standards-setting agencies have developed standards that cover a vast range of areas such as labour rights, social justice and environmental protection. As a form of private transnational regulation, certification standards travel through transnational production networks that link lead firms in developed countries with supplier firms in developing countries. This article draws on a case study about coffee certification to challenge the conventional understanding of transnational certification as a contractual conduit that transfers encoded certification standards from senders to receivers. It shows how transnational certification standards interact with, and remake local regulatory landscapes as they pass through. This interaction between global and local knowledge compels us to see transnational standards as a protean, highly localised regulatory process rather than stable universal norms. The article concludes that transnational certification does not function like an integrated ‘joined-up’ process and it is better understood as a mode of polycentric regulation that decentres and fragments transnational norms and standards.
As conventionally understood, anti-corruption programs rely on legal rules to define and control the abuse of official power for private gain. This study explores the limits to law-based standards of corruption where state officials obscure bribery and the abuse of power beneath a veneer of legality. Drawing on an empirical study of two public-private partnerships (PPPs) in Vietnam, it asks whether the failure of anti-corruption laws to curb malfeasance in PPPs is attributable to insufficient enforcement, to targeting the wrong behavior, or to both of these issues. It argues that if anti-corruption laws are blind to the opportunistic manipulation of laws in PPPs, then we must consider other ways of conceptualizing and controlling corruption. This argument links the way in which corruption is conceptualized to the efficacy of policy instruments used to curb corruption in PPPs. In particular, it examines whether public interest corruption provides a framework that makes malfeasance in PPPs visible and thus offers a mechanism for holding officials accountable. This study concludes that public interest corruption broadens the analysis of corruption in PPPs from transgressions of legal boundaries to an examination of public inclusion and exclusion from decision making.
The ‘16Up’ study conducted at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute from January 2014 to December 2018 aimed to examine the physical and mental health of young Australian twins aged 16−18 years (N = 876; 371 twin pairs and 18 triplet sets). Measurements included online questionnaires covering physical and mental health as well as information and communication technology (ICT) use, actigraphy, sleep diaries and hair samples to determine cortisol concentrations. Study participants generally rated themselves as being in good physical (79%) and mental (73%) health and reported lower rates of psychological distress and exposure to alcohol, tobacco products or other substances than previously reported for this age group in the Australian population. Daily or near-daily online activity was almost universal among study participants, with no differences noted between males and females in terms of frequency or duration of internet access. Patterns of ICT use in this sample indicated that the respondents were more likely to use online information sources for researching physical health issues than for mental health or substance use issues, and that they generally reported partial levels of satisfaction with the mental health information they found online. This suggests that internet-based mental health resources can be readily accessed by adolescent Australians, and their computer literacy augurs well for future access to online health resources. In combination with other data collected as part of the ongoing Brisbane Longitudinal Twin Study, the 16Up project provides a valuable resource for the longitudinal investigation of genetic and environmental contributions to phenotypic variation in a variety of human traits.
This article considers the current position of computer-assisted language learning (CALL) research by producing an integrative synthetic overview of all the articles published in three leading international CALL journals: ReCALL (in its 31st year of publication), the CALICO Journal (its 36th) and Computer Assisted Language Learning journal (its 32nd) over a sustained recent period: 2006–2016. They are judged sufficiently representative to enable broad trends to be detected and the sector’s strengths and weaknesses to be identified. The focus is on CALL research’s international reach, the range of topics researched and the nature of the studies themselves. The findings suggest that CALL research is growing internationally in the number of countries and researchers involved. A wide range of topics is researched, but there is a concentration of papers published on a cluster of popular areas. Consequently, fewer articles are published on a large number of CALL topics or, in some cases, rarely studied. The research methods employed are rigorous: in writing, structure, theory, literature awareness, and discussion and presentation of results, yet there are still weaknesses. Most empirical studies are small scale: based on one institution, a small cohort of students, over a short period of time and seldom followed up. Based on these findings, suggestions are made with a view to broadening and strengthening CALL research through targeting neglected strategic areas with special journal issues and conferences, and improving the quality of research projects. Key areas for future research are proposed.
Health Technology Assessment (HTA) considers the question of whether evaluated technologies are cost-effective in real world settings. As observed in HTA conducted by the Australian Medical Services Advisory Committee (MSAC), questions regarding the validity of data inputs to economic analyses that reflect real-world practice is a common reason for uncertainty on the cost effectiveness of new technologies. In addition to resource use and costs, there may be other uncertainties regarding the eligible patient population, patient management pathways and comparator selection. Our objective in this study was to present case studies from Australia where real world linked datasets could be better utilized to inform HTA conducted by the MSAC.
For selected therapy areas, assessment reports and public summary documents of HTA conducted by the MSAC published between January 2015 and November 2017 were reviewed. Our analysis identified HTAs where uncertainties around the inputs for health economic evaluations, as well as uncertainties in defining eligible patient numbers or current patient pathways of care were shown to exist. We then explored whether these uncertainties could have been addressed through real world linked datasets.
Our preliminary investigations identified two assessments: MSAC assessment of capsule endoscopy and transcatheter aortic valve implantation - where availability of real world linked data could have addressed uncertainties around the inputs required for the health economic evaluations.
Australia has a range of real world datasets with the potential to be used to inform HTA conducted by the MSAC. This can only be achieved if the datasets could be better linked and accessible for use by key stakeholders in the MSAC HTA process (e.g. industry, clinician, patient societies). Use of these data sets in HTA will enable timelier patient access to cost-effective technologies and more effective implementation and review of technologies after adoption into clinical practice.
Deep brain stimulation (DBS), which uses an implantable device to modulate brain activity, is an adjunctive treatment for partial-onset seizures in patients with medically refractory epilepsy. Our objective was to perform an exploratory cost-utility analysis of DBS in conjunction with medical therapy, compared with medical therapy alone, using the latest clinical data and costs for the Australian healthcare system.
A deterministic five-state Markov model was used to project treatment response and outcomes over the patients’ lifetimes, based on 5-year data from the recent Stimulation of the Anterior Nucleus of the Thalamus for Epilepsy (SANTE) DBS trial and drug outcome data identified through a literature search. Costs were based on 2017 data for the Australian healthcare system, and response-specific utilities were derived from published literature. We estimated the lifetime discounted incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) in Australian dollars per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) for patients 36 years of age, fifty-five percent of whom were men. Costs and effects were discounted at five percent per annum. The robustness of projections was evaluated through scenario and sensitivity analyses.
Under assumed continued treatment benefit, DBS was projected to add 3.48 QALYs over the patients’ lifetimes, at an increased cost of AUD 142,304 (USD 105,960), resulting in an ICER of AUD 40,951 (USD 30,492) per QALY gained. Reducing the analysis horizon to 20 years increased the ICER to AUD 49,803 (USD 37,083). Increasing the DBS generator life from 3 to 6 years decreased the ICER to AUD 23,956 (USD 17,838) per QALY. Longer follow-up periods and younger age at treatment were associated with greater cost effectiveness. Results were sensitive to assumptions about health state-specific utility estimates and long-term treatment effects.
Our exploratory findings suggest that DBS is a cost-effective treatment strategy in the Australian healthcare system for patients with medically refractory epilepsy. DBS therapy might meaningfully improve patient outcome at a health economic profile that compares favorably to other well accepted therapies. Consideration of indirect costs would further add to this value proposition.
The socialist trope of people’s ownership of land laid down deep roots in Vietnam. According to the communist party’s foundational mythology, the revolution was fought to replace private land ownership with collective agriculture. By the end of the 1980s internal and external forces compelled reluctant party leaders to incrementally strengthen private rights property rights in land. This chapter explores why this shift towards private land rights has followed different trajectories for agricultural land, and urban residential land. It then discusses how public pressure over land- taking disputes has promoted the party-state to make some modest reforms without touching the socialist trope that land is a public asset.
Since China's reform and opening up started in 1978 and Vietnam's Doi Moi reforms were initiated in 1986, these two East Asian economies have adopted capitalistic models of development while retaining and reforming their socialist legal systems along the way. Tracking the trajectory of socialist laws and their legacy, this book offers a unique comparison of laws and institutional designs in China and Vietnam. Leading scholars from China, Vietnam, Australia and the United States analyze the history, development and impact of socialist law reforms in these two continuing socialist states. Readers are offered a varied insight into the complex quality and unique features of socialist law and why it should be taken seriously. This is a fresh theoretical approach to, and internal critique of, socialist laws which demonstrates how socialist law in China and Vietnam may shape the future of global legal development among developing countries.