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To achieve their conservation goals individuals, communities and organizations need to acquire a diversity of skills, knowledge and information (i.e. capacity). Despite current efforts to build and maintain appropriate levels of conservation capacity, it has been recognized that there will need to be a significant scaling-up of these activities in sub-Saharan Africa. This is because of the rapid increase in the number and extent of environmental problems in the region. We present a range of socio-economic contexts relevant to four key areas of African conservation capacity building: protected area management, community engagement, effective leadership, and professional e-learning. Under these core themes, 39 specific recommendations are presented. These were derived from multi-stakeholder workshop discussions at an international conference held in Nairobi, Kenya, in 2015. At the meeting 185 delegates (practitioners, scientists, community groups and government agencies) represented 105 organizations from 24 African nations and eight non-African nations. The 39 recommendations constituted six broad types of suggested action: (1) the development of new methods, (2) the provision of capacity building resources (e.g. information or data), (3) the communication of ideas or examples of successful initiatives, (4) the implementation of new research or gap analyses, (5) the establishment of new structures within and between organizations, and (6) the development of new partnerships. A number of cross-cutting issues also emerged from the discussions: the need for a greater sense of urgency in developing capacity building activities; the need to develop novel capacity building methodologies; and the need to move away from one-size-fits-all approaches.
We present results, some preliminary, from a major new study of the star formation properties of a sample of nearby disk galaxies (Ferguson 1997). Our emphasis is on the faint outer regions of disks. Hα images, combined with broad-band images and spectroscopy of HII regions, constrain the present and past star formation rates and chemical enrichment. These data also allow study of faint diffuse ionised gas, which traces the influence of massive stars on their environment, and the structure of the interstellar medium.
To provide a richer understanding of food access and purchasing practices among US urban food desert residents and their association with diet and BMI.
Data on food purchasing practices, dietary intake, height and weight from the primary food shopper in randomly selected households (n 1372) were collected. Audits of all neighbourhood food stores (n 24) and the most-frequented stores outside the neighbourhood (n 16) were conducted. Aspects of food access and purchasing practices and relationships among them were examined and tests of their associations with dietary quality and BMI were conducted.
Two low-income, predominantly African-American neighbourhoods with limited access to healthy food in Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
Household food shoppers.
Only one neighbourhood outlet sold fresh produce; nearly all respondents did major food shopping outside the neighbourhood. Although the nearest full-service supermarket was an average of 2·6 km from their home, respondents shopped an average of 6·0 km from home. The average trip was by car, took approximately 2 h for the round trip, and occurred two to four times per month. Respondents spent approximately $US 37 per person per week on food. Those who made longer trips had access to cars, shopped less often and spent less money per person. Those who travelled further when they shopped had higher BMI, but most residents already shopped where healthy foods were available, and physical distance from full-service supermarkets was unrelated to weight or dietary quality.
Improved access to healthy foods is the target of current policies meant to improve health. However, distance to the closest supermarket might not be as important as previously thought, and thus policy and interventions that focus merely on improving access may not be effective.
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is widely applied to treat severe depression resistant to standard treatment. Results from previous studies comparing the cost-effectiveness of this technique with treatment alternatives such as repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) are conflicting.
We conducted a cost-effectiveness analysis comparing ECT alone, rTMS alone and rTMS followed by ECT when rTMS fails under the perspective of the Spanish National Health Service. The analysis is based on a Markov model which simulates the costs and health outcomes of individuals treated under these alternatives over a 12-month period. Data to populate this model were extracted and synthesized from a series of randomized controlled trials and other studies that have compared these techniques on the patient group of interest. We measure effectiveness using quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) and characterize the uncertainty using probabilistic sensitivity analyses.
ECT alone was found to be less costly and more effective than rTMS alone, while the strategy of providing rTMS followed by ECT when rTMS fails is the most expensive and effective option. The incremental cost per QALY gained of this latter strategy was found to be above the reference willingness-to-pay threshold used in these types of studies in Spain and other countries. The probability that ECT alone is the most cost-effective alternative was estimated to be around 70%.
ECT is likely to be the most cost-effective option in the treatment of resistant severe depression for a willingness to pay of €30 000 per QALY.
In his investigations on colour blindness, Dr. Houstoun produced two identical patches of colour on a screen; one of these patches was gradually altered until a difference in tint could just be observed. These two patches were at a distance of 8 mms. apart on the screen, and Dr. Houstoun suggested that if these patches were juxtaposed the observer's colour sensitivity might be improved. The following communication records the results of investigations carried out under that suggested condition.
Methane (CH4) emissions by dairy cows vary with feed intake and diet composition. Even when fed on the same diet at the same intake, however, variation between cows in CH4 emissions can be substantial. The extent of variation in CH4 emissions among dairy cows on commercial farms is unknown, but developments in methodology now permit quantification of CH4 emissions by individual cows under commercial conditions. The aim of this research was to assess variation among cows in emissions of eructed CH4 during milking on commercial dairy farms. Enteric CH4 emissions from 1964 individual cows across 21 farms were measured for at least 7 days/cow using CH4 analysers at robotic milking stations. Cows were predominantly of Holstein Friesian breed and remained on the same feeding systems during sampling. Effects of explanatory variables on average CH4 emissions per individual cow were assessed by fitting a linear mixed model. Significant effects were found for week of lactation, daily milk yield and farm. The effect of milk yield on CH4 emissions varied among farms. Considerable variation in CH4 emissions was observed among cows after adjusting for fixed and random effects, with the CV ranging from 22% to 67% within farms. This study confirms that enteric CH4 emissions vary among cows on commercial farms, suggesting that there is considerable scope for selecting individual cows and management systems with reduced emissions.
The UK has seen a significant transition from Defined Benefit (“DB”) to Defined Contribution (“DC”) for occupational pension saving. The planned automatic enrolment program starting in 2012 is expected to increase the use of DC. The main features of DC are that investment risk falls onto the individual during the pre-retirement phase and that there are no guarantees as to investment returns or the level of pension. In July 2012, Steve Webb, the Pensions Minister, challenged industry to think hard about meeting the need for more certainty about pension savings in DC plans and to consider providing an affordable ‘Money Safe’ guarantee where the member would get back at least the nominal value of their contributions (individual, employer and tax relief). This paper explores whether this is viable for the mass market.
In the United Kingdom, disposal of radioactive waste may involve packages of grouted waste being placed in a geological disposal facility (GDF) and surrounded by a cementitious backfill. This paper describes modelling that has been carried out to develop an understanding of the possible spatial and temporal evolution within the GDF.
A single waste package is assumed to be filled with an encapsulation grout, placed in an underground vault and surrounded by a cementitious backfill. Groundwater from the host rock flows into the vault and through the backfill. A simplified model system examines the interactions between groundwater, cementitious backfill and grout.
In most cases the model predicts a reduction in the backfill porosity due to precipitation and dissolution reactions, particularly at the upstream edge of the vault. The degree to which this occurs depends on the groundwater composition. The model also predicts precipitation and dissolution reactions would occur in the grouts close to their interface with the backfill, reducing the local porosity significantly which may isolate the grouts from the backfill, so that the pH within the grouts would be unchanged over an extended period.
A cementitious backfill has been proposed in many geological disposal concepts for intermediate-level waste and low-level waste in the UK and elsewhere. In this paper, the main features of the chemical evolution of backfill and the associated changes in the near-field pH are illustrated with results from recent work. For example, interaction of the groundwater with calcium silicate hydrate (C-S-H) phases in a backfill is expected to play an important role in the long-term pH-buffering behaviour. Existing experimental data for the dissolution of C-S-H gels are compared with recent experimental results from leach tests on gels of a lower calcium to silicon ratio (C/S) to provide a consistent set of data across the full C/S range. The results confirm that a congruent dissolution point around C/S = 0.8 is approached by leaching from below (i.e. for gels with 0.29 < C/S < 0.8), as well as from above, as reported elsewhere. In addition, a spreadsheet model has been developed to calculate the volume of backfill required at the vault scale to meet specified pH performance criteria. This model includes the major reactions of the backfill with the groundwater, waste encapsulants and waste components. It can also consider the effects of specific waste packages on local pH performance to allow comparison with the vault-scale calculations.
A questionnaire survey was undertaken to determine the exposure of a study population to campylobacteriosis source risk factors (environmental, water, food) and results were stratified by age, population density and deprivation. Data were gathered using an exposure assessment carried out by telephone in the Grampian region of Scotland. Univariate analysis showed that children aged 5–14 years, living in low population density (0–44·4 persons/km2) and affluent areas had elevated exposure to environmental and water risk factors. Multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed that younger age groups and lower population density were significant indicators for most environmental risk factors. The results compared to reported disease incidence in Grampian showed that greater exposure to risk factors does not necessarily coincide with greater disease incidence for age groups, particularly for the 0–4 years age group. Further research is required to explain the relationship between exposure and disease incidence.
E. coli O157 can be transmitted to humans by three primary (foodborne, environmental, waterborne) and one secondary (person-to-person transmission) pathways. A regression model and quantitative microbiological risk assessments (QMRAs) were applied to determine the relative importance of the primary transmission pathways in NE Scotland. Both approaches indicated that waterborne infection was the least important but it was unclear whether food or the environment was the main source of infection. The QMRAs over-predicted the number of cases by a factor of 30 and this could be because all E. coli O157 strains may not be equally infective and/or the level of infectivity in the dose–response model was too high. The efficacy of potential risk mitigation strategies to reduce human exposure to E. coli O157 using QMRAs was simulated. Risk mitigation strategies focusing on food and environment are likely to have the biggest impact on infection figures.
Information on the burden of hepatitis C virus (HCV) disease is needed to inform policy decisions on primary and secondary prevention. Specimen-based laboratory data (1989–2004) were converted to person-based data and combined with notification data (2004–2009) to describe the burden of HCV infection in Ireland. More than 10 000 people were confirmed as HCV infected in 1989–2004, with the numbers peaking in 2000. The predominant genotypes were 1 (55%) and 3 (39%). Drug use was the most likely risk factor in 80%, with receipt of blood or blood products in 16%. It is estimated that 20 000–50 000 people in Ireland are chronically infected with HCV, a population prevalence of 0·5–1·2%, which is similar to other countries in Northern Europe. This is the first published estimate of the number of chronic HCV infections in Ireland. These data will be of value in health service planning and will contribute to the understanding of HCV infection in Europe.
A major concern in the development and implementation of metal implants for the clinical use is the assessment of material-induced mutagenesis. In this study we used synchrotron microspectroscopy in the mid-infrared region (4000-400 cm1 ) to non-invasively assess the in situ human cell responses to metal surfaces. Specifically we examined the subtle genetic aberrations of cells as they responded to a range of metals commonly used in metal prosthetic devices. Relative band intensities and band intensity ratios for functional groups of biomolecules that are inherent to the experimental system were examined. The molecular components of the biomolecules as they were perturbed by the interactions with metals were investigated. These results demonstrate the potential use of synchrotron FTIR microspectroscopy to screen the mutagenicity of metal implants.
We studied concerns about cognitive health among ethnically diverse groups of older adults. The study was grounded in theories of health behaviour and the representation of health and illness. We conducted 42 focus groups (N=396, ages 50+) in four languages, with African Americans, American Indians, Chinese Americans, Latinos, Whites other than Latinos (hereafter, Whites) and Vietnamese Americans, in nine United States locations. Participants discussed concerns about keeping their memory or ability to think as they age. Audio recordings were transcribed verbatim. Constant comparison methods identified themes. In findings, all ethnic groups expressed concern and fear about memory loss, losing independence, and becoming ‘a burden’. Knowing someone with Alzheimer's disease increased concern. American Indians, Chinese Americans, Latinos and Vietnamese Americans expected memory loss. American Indians, Chinese Americans and Vietnamese Americans were concerned about stigma associated with Alzheimer's disease. Only African Americans, Chinese and Whites expressed concern about genetic risks. Only African Americans and Whites expressed concern about behaviour changes. Although we asked participants for their thoughts about their ability to think as they age, they focused almost exclusively on memory. This suggests that health education promoting cognitive health should focus on memory, but should also educate the public about the importance of maintaining all aspects of cognitive health.
This research compared public opinions about Escherichia coli O157 (an increasing environmental hazard associated with livestock) in two farming areas with contrasting incidence of E. coli O157 disease. A questionnaire was administered in rural Grampian (10·8 cases/100 000 population per year) and North Wales (2·5 cases/100 000 population per year). Awareness was highest among farmers in Grampian (91%) and lowest among visitors to both areas (28%). Respondents were more likely to indicate vomiting (76%) than bloody diarrhoea (48%) as a common symptom. Undercooked meat and contact with farm animal faeces were identified by 60% of all respondents as risk factors who described ‘basic hygiene’ for risk reduction indoors. Visitors view E. coli O157 as a food hazard, not an environmental hazard that produces vomiting not dysentery. Efforts to reduce human infections in livestock farming areas could be improved with proximate reminders for visitors of the environmental pathway of E. coli O157 infection.
Despite the continued popularity of outsourcing amongst managers and management researchers alike, signifi cant questions arguably remain as to the adequacy of the typical framing of the outsourcing decision. An extensive review of the literature revealed a skewed, partial and fragmented conceptualisation of the option, further exacerbated by a concerning tendency effectively to rank quantitative outcomes over qualitative outcomes, even ex post. In this article it is argued that a critical analysis of the theoretical frameworks that underlie this body of work suggests a more realistic conceptualisation of outsourcing, both for management researchers and management decision makers.