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In this article, we describe two experiments measuring the impact of a collection of interventions informed by behavioural sciences to reduce unemployment. In a small-scale pilot study (n = 2,383) run in partnership with a Jobcentre in the UK, we found that small changes to the way jobseekers interacted with employment advisers showed promising effects. Based on these findings, we refined our intervention and tested it in a second, larger trial (n = 88,033) across 12 Jobcentres in the UK. We found that our intervention significantly increased off-flow from benefits. These experiments demonstrate that policies and programmes aimed at reducing unemployment can benefit greatly from a deeper understanding of the behaviours of jobseekers and employment advisers. Further, we suggest that this approach could have positive implications for other areas of public policy.
We used multivariable analyses to assess whether meeting core elements was associated with antibiotic utilization. Compliance with 7 elements versus not doing so was associated with higher use of broad-spectrum agents for community-acquired infections [days of therapy per 1,000 patient days: 155 (39) vs 133 (29), P = .02] and anti-methicillin-resistant S. aureus agents [days of therapy per 1,000 patient days: 145 (37) vs 124 (30), P = .03].
A lasting legacy of the International Polar Year (IPY) 2007–2008 was the promotion of the Permafrost Young Researchers Network (PYRN), initially an IPY outreach and education activity by the International Permafrost Association (IPA). With the momentum of IPY, PYRN developed into a thriving network that still connects young permafrost scientists, engineers, and researchers from other disciplines. This research note summarises (1) PYRN’s development since 2005 and the IPY’s role, (2) the first 2015 PYRN census and survey results, and (3) PYRN’s future plans to improve international and interdisciplinary exchange between young researchers. The review concludes that PYRN is an established network within the polar research community that has continually developed since 2005. PYRN’s successful activities were largely fostered by IPY. With >200 of the 1200 registered members active and engaged, PYRN is capitalising on the availability of social media tools and rising to meet environmental challenges while maintaining its role as a successful network honouring the legacy of IPY.
Samuel Pursch, Research and strategy advisor working on governance and social development in Myanmar and across Southeast Asia.,
Andrea Woodhouse, Senior social development specialist at the World Bank.,
Michael Woolcock, Lead social scientist with the World Bank's Development Research Group, and a (part-time) Lecturer in Public Policy at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.,
Matthew Zurstrassen, Development professional working on social research and justice programs in the Asia Pacific Region and managed research for the World Bank's “Livelihoods and Social Change in Rural Myanmar” study.
Myanmar has undergone significant reforms in recent years. A commonly accepted view is that, unlike many of the political shifts experienced elsewhere in the world in the twenty-first century, their impetus came not “from below” but from national elites, prompted by military decisions to open the country to the world and begin to democratize (Pederson 2012, Fink 2014). Much of the literature on Myanmar's transition thus focuses on national dynamics, seeking insights on what has changed, why, and how, by examining shifts among political elites, the business community, and the upper echelons of the Tatmadaw (see Pederson 2012; ICG 2012; Jones 2014). These changes emerged from a variety of elite-led processes, including the drafting of a new constitution in 2008, and accelerated under the Thein Sein-led government starting in 2011. Yet while analysing the motives and strategies of elites is vital for understanding the national impetus behind Myanmar's reforms, it leaves little space for assessing how the transition has played out among the broader populace, particularly in the rural villages where seventy per cent of Myanmar's people live. It also overlooks how the prevailing social institutions at the local level have responded to the various forms and sources of contention (actual and/or potential) inherently accompanying such major changes, and the associated implications for policy and practice in Myanmar.
This paper seeks to contribute to research on Myanmar's social transformation by analysing how governance reforms and changes in the life experiences of people in rural communities are altering the social contract at the village level. The paper argues that the nature and extent of the “social contract”—i.e., the terms on which citizens interact with one another, and the basis on which contending views of citizens’ core rights and responsibilities are negotiated with and legitimately upheld by the state—is being re-written in Myanmar. Three areas of change, especially since 2011, have affected how citizens in rural areas interact with the state: village governance, citizens’ expectations of the state, and connectivity. Responding to these challenges will require strategies informed by the best available evidence.
Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) is an evidence-based treatment program for people with severe mental illness developed in high-income countries. We report the first randomized controlled trial of ACT in mainland China.
Sixty outpatients with schizophrenia with severe functional impairments or frequent hospitalizations were randomly assigned to ACT (n = 30) or standard community treatment (n = 30). The severity of symptoms and level of social functioning were assessed at baseline and every 3 months during the 1-year study. The primary outcome was the duration of hospital readmission. Secondary outcomes included a pre-post change in symptom severity, the rates of symptom relapse and gainful employment, social and occupational functioning, and quality of life of family caregivers.
Based on a modified intention-to-treat analysis, the outcomes for ACT were significantly better than those of standard community treatment. ACT patients were less likely to be readmitted [3.3% (1/30) v. 25.0% (7/28), Fisher's exact test p = 0.023], had a shorter mean readmission time [2.4 (13.3) v. 30.7 (66.9) days], were less likely to relapse [6.7% (2/30) v. 28.6% (8/28), Fisher's exact test p = 0.038], and had shorter mean time in relapse [3.5 (14.6) v. 34.4 (70.6) days]. The ACT group also had significantly longer times re-employed and greater symptomatic improvement and their caregivers experienced a greater improvement in their quality of life.
Our results show that culturally adapted ACT is both feasible and effective for individuals with severe schizophrenia in urban China. Replication studies with larger samples and longer duration of follow up are warranted.
Collaborative quality improvement and learning networks have amended healthcare quality and value across specialities. Motivated by these successes, the Pediatric Acute Care Cardiology Collaborative (PAC3) was founded in late 2014 with an emphasis on improving outcomes of paediatric cardiology patients within cardiac acute care units; acute care encompasses all hospital-based inpatient non-intensive care. PAC3 aims to deliver higher quality and greater value care by facilitating the sharing of ideas and building alignment among its member institutions. These aims are intentionally aligned with the work of other national clinical collaborations, registries, and parent advocacy organisations. The mission and early work of PAC3 is exemplified by the formal partnership with the Pediatric Cardiac Critical Care Consortium (PC4), as well as the creation of a clinical registry, which links with the PC4 registry to track practices and outcomes across the entire inpatient encounter from admission to discharge. Capturing the full inpatient experience allows detection of outcome differences related to variation in care delivered outside the cardiac ICU and development of benchmarks for cardiac acute care. We aspire to improve patient outcomes such as morbidity, hospital length of stay, and re-admission rates, while working to advance patient and family satisfaction. We will use quality improvement methodologies consistent with the Model for Improvement to achieve these aims. Membership currently includes 36 centres across North America, out of which 26 are also members of PC4. In this report, we describe the development of PAC3, including the philosophical, organisational, and infrastructural elements that will enable a paediatric acute care cardiology learning network.
Google Scholar (GS) is an important tool that faculty, administrators, and external reviewers use to evaluate the scholarly impact of candidates for jobs, tenure, and promotion. This article highlights both the benefits of GS—including the reliability and consistency of its citation counts and its platform for disseminating scholarship and facilitating networking—and its pitfalls. GS has biases because citation is a social and political process that disadvantages certain groups, including women, younger scholars, scholars in smaller research communities, and scholars opting for risky and innovative work. GS counts also reflect practices of strategic citation that exacerbate existing hierarchies and inequalities. As a result, it is imperative that political scientists incorporate other data sources, especially independent scholarly judgment, when making decisions that are crucial for careers. External reviewers have a unique obligation to offer a reasoned, rigorous, and qualitative assessment of a scholar’s contributions and therefore should not use GS.
OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: As the sole Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) site in Michigan, the Michigan Institute for Clinical & Health Research (MICHR) at the University of Michigan (UM) is working to develop community networks that drive clinical and translational research on community-identified health priorities. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: These CBRNs will be modeled from successful work that has been accomplished in Jackson, MI where stakeholders from the local healthcare community, County Health Department, Health Improvement Organization, and grassroots community members created a Community of Solution to address the unmet behavioral health and social needs of community members. The CBRN’s will focus on identifying community health priorities by receiving input from community members in underserved communities using deliberative software called Choosing All Together (CHAT). RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: In the fall of 2017, 3 focus groups were held in Northern Michigan to identify community health priorities. The top 5 community health priorities include; (1) mental wellness, (2) long-term illness, (3) alcohol and drugs, (4) air, water, and land, and (5) affording care. Additional focus groups are scheduled for the winter in 2 additional geographic areas. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: Future work for the creation of CBRNs includes building leadership groups comprised of clinicians, community leaders, public health leaders, health system leaders and researchers to inform the leadership groups of community-identified health priorities. In addition, the team is working to identify a platform to connect academic investigators across UM and community partners on shared research priorities in real time. In order to measure and map relationships within the networks, we are planning to utilize Social Network Analysis as an evaluation tool.
Although computation and the science of physical systems would appear to be unrelated, there are a number of ways in which computational and physical concepts can be brought together in ways that illuminate both. This volume examines fundamental questions which connect scholars from both disciplines: is the universe a computer? Can a universal computing machine simulate every physical process? What is the source of the computational power of quantum computers? Are computational approaches to solving physical problems and paradoxes always fruitful? Contributors from multiple perspectives reflecting the diversity of thought regarding these interconnections address many of the most important developments and debates within this exciting area of research. Both a reference to the state of the art and a valuable and accessible entry to interdisciplinary work, the volume will interest researchers and students working in physics, computer science, and philosophy of science and mathematics.