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The design of government portfolios – that is, the distribution of competencies among government ministries and office holders – has been largely ignored in the study of executive and coalition politics. This article argues that portfolio design is a substantively and theoretically relevant phenomenon that has major implications for the study of institutional design and coalition politics. The authors use comparative data on portfolio design reforms in nine Western European countries since the 1970s to demonstrate how the design of government portfolios changes over time. Specifically, they show that portfolios are changed frequently (on average about once a year) and that such shifts are more likely after changes in the prime ministership or the party composition of the government. These findings suggest a political logic behind these reforms based on the preferences and power of political parties and politicians. They have major implications for the study of institutional design and coalition politics.
With the emergence of modern techniques of environmental analysis and widespread availability of accessible tools and quantitative data, the question of environmental determinism is once again on the agenda. This paper is theoretical in character, attempting, for the benefit of drawing up research designs, to understand and evaluate the character of environmental determinism. We reach three main conclusions: (1) in a typical pattern of research design, studies seek to detect simultaneous shifts in the environmental and archaeological records, variously positing the former to have influenced, triggered or caused the latter; (2) the question of determinism involves uncertainty about the justification for the above research design in particular in what comes to biologism and the concept of environmental thresholds on the one hand and the externality of the drivers of transformation in human groups and societies on the other; (3) adapting the concepts of the social production of vulnerability and the social basis of hazards from anthropology may help to clarify the available research design choices at hand.
We present ALMA band 7 data of the extreme OH/IR star, OH 26.5+0.6. In addition to lines of CO and its isotopologues, the circumstellar envelope also exhibits a number of emission lines due to metal-containing molecules, e.g., NaCl and KCl. A lack of C18O is expected, but a non-detection of C17O is puzzling given the strengths of H217O in Herschel spectra of the star. However, a line associated with Si17O is detected. We also report a tentative detection of a gas-phase emission line of MgS. The ALMA spectrum of this object reveals intriguing features which may be used to investigate chemical processes and dust formation during a high mass-loss phase.
We present a novel bonding process for gallium nitride-based electronic devices on diamond heat spreaders. In the proposed technology, GaN devices are transferred from silicon (Si) onto single (SCD) and polycrystalline diamond (PCD) substrates by van der Waals bonding. Load-pull measurements on Si and SCD heat spreaders at 3 GHz and 50 V drain bias show comparable power-added-efficiency and output power (Pout) levels. A thermal analysis of the hybrids was performed by comparison of 2 × 1mm2 AlGaN/GaN Schottky diodes on Si, PCD, and SCD, which exhibit a homogeneous field in the channel in contrast to gated transistors. Significantly different currents are observed due to the temperature dependent mobility in the 2DEG channel. These measurements are supported by a 3D thermal finite element analysis, which suggests a large impact of our transfer technique on the thermal resistance of these devices. In summary, we show a promising new GaN-on-diamond technology for future high-power, microwave GaN device applications.
Fear responses are particularly intense and persistent in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and can be evoked by unspecific cues that resemble the original traumatic event. Overgeneralisation of fear might be one of the underlying mechanisms. We investigated the generalisation and discrimination of fear in individuals with and without PTSD related to prolonged childhood maltreatment.
Sixty trauma-exposed women with (N = 30) and without (N = 30) PTSD and 30 healthy control participants (HC) underwent a fear conditioning and generalisation paradigm. In a contingency learning procedure, one of two circles of different sizes was associated with an electrical shock (danger cue), while the other circle represented a safety cue. During generalisation testing, online risk ratings, reaction times and fear-potentiated startle were measured in response to safety and danger cues as well as to eight generalisation stimuli, i.e. circles of parametrically varying size creating a continuum of similarity between the danger and safety cue.
The increase in reaction times from the safety cue across the different generalisation classes to the danger cue was less pronounced in PTSD compared with HC. Moreover, PTSD participants expected higher risk of an aversive event independent of stimulus types and task.
Alterations in generalisation constitute one part of fear memory alterations in PTSD. Neither the accuracy of a risk judgement nor the strength of the induced fear was affected. Instead, processing times as an index of uncertainty during risk judgements suggested a reduced differentiation between safety and threat in PTSD.
Depression and obesity are highly prevalent, and major impacts on public health frequently co-occur. Recently, we reported that having depression moderates the effect of the FTO gene, suggesting its implication in the association between depression and obesity.
To confirm these findings by investigating the FTO polymorphism rs9939609 in new cohorts, and subsequently in a meta-analysis.
The sample consists of 6902 individuals with depression and 6799 controls from three replication cohorts and two original discovery cohorts. Linear regression models were performed to test for association between rs9939609 and body mass index (BMI), and for the interaction between rs9939609 and depression status for an effect on BMI. Fixed and random effects meta-analyses were performed using METASOFT.
In the replication cohorts, we observed a significant interaction between FTO, BMI and depression with fixed effects meta-analysis (β=0.12, P = 2.7 × 10−4) and with the Han/Eskin random effects method (P = 1.4 × 10−7) but not with traditional random effects (β = 0.1, P = 0.35). When combined with the discovery cohorts, random effects meta-analysis also supports the interaction (β = 0.12, P = 0.027) being highly significant based on the Han/Eskin model (P = 6.9 × 10−8). On average, carriers of the risk allele who have depression have a 2.2% higher BMI for each risk allele, over and above the main effect of FTO.
This meta-analysis provides additional support for a significant interaction between FTO, depression and BMI, indicating that depression increases the effect of FTO on BMI. The findings provide a useful starting point in understanding the biological mechanism involved in the association between obesity and depression.
Elastic strain is an effective and thus widely used parameter to control and modify the electrical, optical, and magnetic properties of crystalline solid-state materials. It has a large impact on device performance and enables adjusting the materials functionality. Here, we promote a micromechanical strain enhancement technology to achieve ultra-high strain in semiconductors. The here presented suspended membranes enable the accurate control of the strain on a wafer-scale by standard top-down fabrication methods making it attractive for both device applications and also, thanks to the simplicity of the method, for fundamental research. This review aims at discussing the process of strain enhancement and its usage as an investigation platform for strain-related physical properties. Furthermore, we present design rules and a detailed analysis of fracture effects limiting the strain enhancement.
Extremely strong magnetic fields of the order of 1015G are required to explain the properties of magnetars, the most magnetic neutron stars. Such a strong magnetic field is expected to play an important role for the dynamics of core-collapse supernovae, and in the presence of rapid rotation may power superluminous supernovae and hypernovae associated to long gamma-ray bursts. The origin of these strong magnetic fields remains, however, obscure and most likely requires an amplification over many orders of magnitude in the protoneutron star. One of the most promising agents is the magnetorotational instability (MRI), which can in principle amplify exponentially fast a weak initial magnetic field to a dynamically relevant strength. We describe our current understanding of the MRI in protoneutron stars and show recent results on its dependence on physical conditions specific to protoneutron stars such as neutrino radiation, strong buoyancy effects and large magnetic Prandtl number.
In this paper, we propose a Static Condensation Reduced Basis Element (SCRBE) approach for the Reynolds Lubrication Equation (RLE). The SCRBE method is a computational tool that allows to efficiently analyze parametrized structures which can be decomposed into a large number of similar components. Here, we extend the methodology to allow for a more general domain decomposition, a typical example being a checkerboard-pattern assembled from similar components. To this end, we extend the formulation and associated a posteriori error bound procedure. Our motivation comes from the analysis of the pressure distribution in plain journal bearings governed by the RLE. However, the SCRBE approach presented is not limited to bearings and the RLE, but directly extends to other component-based systems. We show numerical results for plain bearings to demonstrate the validity of the proposed approach.
How does gender affect the attack strategies of political actors? Do men and women diverge in their propensity to go negative and in their choice of targets? Extant research has long sought to shed light on these questions (e.g., Brooks 2010; Kahn 1993; Krupnikov and Bauer 2014; Proctor, Schenck-Hamlin, and Haase 1994; Walter 2013). Among all the possible determinants of attack behavior in elections, candidate gender has been one of the most “heavily studied” (Grossmann 2012, 2). However, the relevant research focuses almost exclusively on the United States and therefore on a system with candidate-centered campaigns, weak party organizations, and winner-takes-all competitions. Notwithstanding the importance of the USA as a case and exporter of campaign techniques, such context is specific and likely to bias the results. The few pioneering studies that examine the role of gender in negative campaigning outside the U.S. (Carlson 2001, 2007; Walter 2013) have addressed this question mostly by transferring the analytical framework of U.S.-based research to other political systems. Consequently, they have barely begun to incorporate the distinctive features of multiparty systems and strong party organizations as determinants of gender differences in attack behavior. The present article provides a novel argument about the role of party environments as a crucial context factor in party-centered political systems. Specifically we argue that in party-centered campaigns the gender balance within parties influences differences in the attack behavior of male and female politicians.