ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201812.0115.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Law Keywords: Commercial agency, Exclusivity, Agency termination, Agency disputes, Agency committee, Jordan, GATS, Competitive markets, Monopolization
Online: 11 December 2018 (08:59:38 CET)
The Jordanian Law of Commercial Agents and Intermediaries No. 28 of 2001 and the Emirati Commercial Agency Law No. 2 of 2010 cover all forms of sale contracts through intermediaries. These Laws provide express restrictions and protective provisions on the conduct by local agents of internal commercial agency activities. However, these statutory protections are granted only to registered agencies conducted by national agents.The Jordanian legislator does not regulate the issue of agency exclusivity, which can constitute a restraint of trade and leads to a state of market monopolization. Courts in Jordan have exclusive jurisdiction in settling disputes arising out of agency agreements. However, this exclusive jurisdiction does not cover unregistered commercial agencies which are treated as enforceable commercial contracts under the general provisions prescribed in the Commercial Code.Under the Jordanian Law the principal cannot terminate the agency agreement at any time, but he can dismiss its renewal upon the expiry of its date without justified grounds. Certain statutory protections provided by the Jordanian laws raise barriers to entry to their national markets. This statutory policy violates the specific commitments made by Jordan with respect to market access and national treatment established by the GATS.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0495.v2
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Information Technology & Data Management Keywords: agency; smart devices; IoT; device agency; user agency; human computer interaction; HCI; questionnaire; exploratory analysis; anova
Online: 22 September 2020 (03:45:51 CEST)
In this paper, we investigate the relationship people have with their smart devices. We use the concept of agency to capture aspects of users’ sense of mastery as they relate to their device. This study gives preliminary evidence of the existence of two independent dimensions of agency for modeling the interaction between humans and smart devices: (i) user agency and (ii) device agency. These constructs emerged from an exploratory factorial analysis conducted on a survey data collected from 587 participants. In addition, we investigate the correlation between user agency and device agency with background variables of the respondents. Finally, we argue that mapping the users’ dynamics with their device into user agency and device agency fosters a better understanding of the needs of the users and helps in designing interfaces tailored for the specific capabilities and expectations of the users.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0362.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences Keywords: transitions; water management regimes; niches; visions; agency;
Online: 15 November 2018 (11:22:48 CET)
This paper analyses six major transitions in watershed management in the Lower Mississippi River from the early 19th century till present. A conceptual framework is developed for analysing the role of visions, agency and niches in water management transitions and applied to a historical case on water management in the Lower Mississippi River. It is shown that water management regimes change over time and that major transitions were preceded by niches, in which new visions were developed and empowered. The case shows that: (i) emerging visions play an important role in guiding transitions; (ii) agency enables the further diffusion of visions and niches; (iii) vision champions play an important role in transitions, but are not decisive; (iv) each transition has led to an extension of the number of societal functions provided, which has led to more complex water management regimes in which functions are combined and integrated; and (v) external landscape factors are important, as they can lead to awareness and urgency in important decision making processes.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202202.0269.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Business And Administrative Sciences Keywords: Utility; Reforms; Governance; Regulation; Incentives; Agency; Liberalization; Performance
Online: 22 February 2022 (11:02:29 CET)
The power sectors in most African countries face an enduring problem of utility performance – electricity utilities have failed to deliver adequate, reliable and competitively priced electricity to support economic growth and improve the welfare of their populations. Despite more than two decades of power sector re-forms, outcomes have been varied and often disappointing. Using a case study de-sign, we explore the five key enduring power challenges. The research utilizes a more powerful analytical framework that combines power sector reform theory and principal-agent theoretical lens to explore the experience of power sector reforms in Kenya and provides a deeper understanding of drivers of utility performance and reform impacts. Empirical findings show that the structural, governance and regulatory reforms that previously created incentives for improved utility performance are increasingly threatened by political influence. Kenya Power’s financial viability has deteriorated in recent years and the regulator has been undermined. One of our major conclusions is that when the relationship between the principal (government) and agent (utility) is well understood and the agent is properly incentivized, performance improvements are possible. However, when the government undermines or muddies those incentives through conflicting political interventions, performance improvements can be reversed.
CONCEPT PAPER | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0326.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences Keywords: Agency, Transition, Cognition, Land-use change, Games, Democracy
Online: 16 August 2021 (17:09:08 CEST)
While the scientific community has focused on documenting environmental degradation and developing scenarios that help identify the operational margins for system Earth, less attention has been given to the mental models of decision-makers that underpin environmental policies. We suggest that global efforts to stop deforestation and biodiversity loss are failing in part due to a critical blind spot in the analysis—human agency. To address this weakness, we propose to formulate mental models and translate them into strategy games. This will increase the representation of agency in scenario development and create spaces for deliberation between different worldviews. We claim that personal transformation can be achieved through transparent democratic dialogues that identify, challenge, and respond to the human and social limitations inherent to decision-making and we present empirical examples that validate that claim. Their transformation through gaming gives decision-makers access to the experience of consciousness: “what is it like being a stakeholder?”. Such experience will help to break free of established norms in science and political processes.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202102.0567.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: Agency; HCI; Smart Devices; Human computer interaction; survey
Online: 25 February 2021 (09:52:25 CET)
In this article, we report how we constructed a dataset that contains the responses to a survey designed for investigating the relationship that humans have with their smart devices. The dataset has been collected in May-July 2020 and is a sample of over 500 respondents of various different ethnicities and backgrounds. These data have been used for modelling the ways people relate to their devices using the notion of agency. However, the data can be used for complementing any study that intends to investigate a tool-mediated communication from the perspective of the users and via a variety of attitudes and expectations the users invest in their devices and in themselves as users. This article presents the survey items as well as some preliminary data insights. The data have been collected in English and answers have been anonymized in order to ensure GDPR compliance. They are stored in a .csv file containing the respondents’ answers to the questions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0609.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Atmospheric Science Keywords: agency; transition; cognition; land-use change; games; democracy
Online: 29 October 2020 (11:24:42 CET)
Leclère et al.1 have outlined the possibility of a biodiversity transition for the 21st century, a line of thinking equivalent to the Forest Transition theory and what it says about forest cover globally2. The authors use a suite of global models to explore the impacts on global biodiversity of interventions on land-use, consumption and production patterns. They outline six strategies that have the potential to stop the downfall of global terrestrial biodiversity by 2050 and redress it to a pre-1970 level by 2100. Although robust, sophisticated and well-illustrated, the conclusions of this paper cannot alone be used to frame a post-2020 biodiversity strategy.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0597.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Other Keywords: pilgrimage; ritual; power; agency; performance; entrepreneurs; institutional religion
Online: 24 July 2020 (14:43:52 CEST)
During the last twenty years around the world there has been a rapid increase in the number of people visiting long established religious shrines as well as the creation of new sites by those operating outside the boundaries of institutional religion. This increase is intimately associated with the revival of traditional routes, the creation of new ones and the invention of new rituals (religious, spiritual and secular). To examine this process I will focus on the European region and two contrasting destinations in particular – the Catholic shrine of Lourdes, France, and the pre-Christian shrine of Avebury, England – drawing on my personal involvement in travelling to both destinations and being involved in ritual activities along the route and at the two destinations. In the discussion section of the paper I will explore the relevance of these two case studies to the analysis of power, agency and performance and the ways in which they expose (a) the role of institutions and entrepreneurs in creating rituals and sacred places and (b) the relationship between people and the domesticated landscape.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201805.0367.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences Keywords: vulnerability; culture; religion; agency; adaptation; perceptions; climate change; dependency
Online: 25 May 2018 (12:06:03 CEST)
Semi-arid Namibia is marginal for agricultural production. Low soil fertility combined with low and variable rainfall restrict the livelihoods of smallholder farmers who often struggle to produce enough food. Although historically communities have adopted a number of coping mechanisms, climate change threatens to further reduce agricultural production. There are many additional options available to smallholder farmers to adapt to climate change, but they are not necessarily adopting these measures despite having noticed increasing temperatures and declining rainfall. Semi-structured interviews were conducted in three villages in Onesi constituency to examine what agricultural practices smallholder crop farmers use, perception of changes in their yields, their perspective on future yields and whether they are planning on changing their agricultural practices. The results suggest that to sustain the livelihoods of rural communities in north-central Namibia support is needed from local and regional authorities, as well as traditional and religious leaders to assist with enhancing access to information, enabling information sharing on adaptation options, and increasing awareness on climate change, it’s impacts and what can be done about it. In addition to this the implementation of adaptation action also requires demonstration sites and building capacity to enable the development of self-help groups.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201701.0073.v1
Subject: Biology, Agricultural Sciences & Agronomy Keywords: food valuation; food as commons; food as commodity; transition theory; narratives of transition; agency in transition; transformative agency; counter-hegemonic attitudes; gradual reformers
Online: 16 January 2017 (04:17:20 CET)
The food system, the most important driver of planetary transformation, is in a deep crisis. Therefore, seeking a sustainable and socially-fair transition pathway becomes an issue of utmost priority for our own survival. The consideration of food as a commodity, a social construct that played a central role in driving this crisis, remains the uncontested narrative to lead the different transition pathways what seems rather contradictory. By exploring the normative values in the transition landscape, this paper seeks to understand how relevant is the hegemonic narrative of “food as commodity” and its alternative of “food as commons” to determine transition trajectories and food policy beliefs. Applying the Multi-level Perspective framework and developing the ill-studied “agency in transition”, this research enquired food-related professionals that belong to an online community of practice (N=95) on valuation of food dimensions and agency in food transitions to check whether the valuation of food is relevant to explain personal stances in transition. Results suggest the socially-constructed view of food as commodity is positively correlated to the gradual reforming attitude, whereas food as commons is positively correlated to the counter-hegemonic transformers regardless the self-defined position in the transition landscape (regime or niches). At personal level, there are multiple loci of resistance with counter-hegemonic attitudes in varied institutions of the regime and the innovative niches, many of them holding this discourse of food as commons. Conversely, alter-hegemonic attitudes are not positively correlated to this alternative discourse and they may inadvertently or purportedly reinforce the ‘‘neoliberal narrative’’. Food as commons, a different narrative whose rationale is explained in the paper, seems to be a relevant framework that could enrich the multiple transformative constituencies that challenge the industrial food system and therefore facilitate the convergence of movements that reject the commodification of food.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0087.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences Keywords: Forest transition, sustainable transformation, boundary objects, games, decision-making, agency
Online: 5 March 2020 (11:58:55 CET)
Forests across the world stand at the crossroad with climate and land use changes shaping their future. Despite the demonstration of political will and global efforts, forest loss, fragmentation and land degradation continue unabated. No clear evidence exists that these initiatives are working. Why are policies designed to halt deforestation and increase restoration of forest landscapes failing? A key reason for this apparent ineffectiveness lies in the failure to recognize the agency of the stakeholders involved and the adaptive capacities of the systems we seek to steer. Landscapes do not happen. We make them. They are the result of the sum of individual actions and decisions made by all stakeholders, and the interactions between these and biophysical processes. Likewise, forest transitions are not ecological, but social and behavioral. They are a product of the way humans manage ecosystems. Decision-makers need to integrate better representations of people’s agency in their mental models. We suggest possible solution pathways to overcome this key current barrier. These involve eliciting mental models behind policy decision, changing perspectives to better understand divergent points of view and refining strategies through explicit theories of change. Games designed to represent the constraints and opportunities that exist in the landscapes can help decision makers in these task.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201706.0124.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Business And Administrative Sciences Keywords: agency theory； property rights； transaction costs； efficiency； public service sector
Online: 27 June 2017 (08:22:37 CEST)
The past few decades have been characterized by a growing body of profit-seeking public service areas with the understanding that profit-seeking organizations will deliver public services more efficiently than government can. These sectors include, but are not limited to, health care, corrections and education. Governments have created quasi markets to attract private providers of services in these sectors, with varying results. Organizational economics has provided the primary explanation for quasi markets, but questions about the sought-for efficiencies actually realized through these markets persist. We integrate resource dependence theory and organizational economics to provide a more comprehensive explanation of the persistence of quasi markets.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0272.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Sociology Keywords: agroecology; physical reproduction; social reproduction; agency; sub-Saharan Africa; smallholder agriculture
Online: 16 August 2022 (03:31:35 CEST)
This paper investigates how agroecology in Africa is researched for two purposes. First, we present evidence of links between agroecology and food and nutrition security in sub-Saharan Africa. Second, we investigate which pathways of influence are dominant in the existing research and which pathways are under-represented. To achieve these objectives we anchor our analysis within feminist economics, thereby making use of the concepts of social reproduction and agency in our analysis of the literature. By employing a systematic literature review of empirical studies from African countries, starting from 1996 to 2020, we consolidate evidence that agroecology has contributed to food and nutrition security by acting toward sustainability at the farm level. However, our review shows in a second step that social and household dimensions of agroecology at the level of households and territories are not well documented in research linking agroecology to food security and nutrition in sub-Saharan Africa. Given that sustainable production practices such as agroecological practices are not mutually exclusive from the social activities of farmers and cultural contexts in which farmers are embedded, it is important to consider social and ecological processes concomitantly when assessing the value of Agroecology programs.
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: Financial Constraints; Agency Cost; Equity Concentration; Holding Heterogeneity; Real Estate Industry
Online: 19 October 2020 (14:32:53 CEST)
Real estate industry is related to the national economy and people's livelihood，characterized by a high degree of financial intensity. The enterprises in this industry need certain financial ability and large shareholder controlling ability to support their survival. However，due to the multiple adverse impacts of current state policies，banks and private capital，the credit crunch，the sudden decrease in withdrawn funds and the limitation of internal financing，the problem of capital restraint of real estate enterprises has become more and more serious. From the perspective of corporate governance，this paper studies the interaction among financial constraints，ownership concentration and corporate performance under different shareholding states by analyzing the quantitative characteristics of equity structure，and looks for the appropriate range of the largest shareholder holding ratio，which has considered the financial performance and risk. It is found that raising the ownership concentration can effectively ease the financing constraints and improve the performance of enterprises，both of which are significant under the state of high ownership concentration， while the financial constraints play a significant intermediary effect under the State of absolute holding， while in the decentralized state of ownership，there is a significant regulatory effect，and the interaction of the three will be different due to the size of the enterprise.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201911.0151.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Political Science Keywords: citizen satisfaction; public service; one-stop service; one-stop service agency
Online: 13 November 2019 (15:53:45 CET)
The present study explained factors influencing citizen satisfaction service in the Investment and One-Stop Service Agency of Tanah Bumbu Regency. In particular, this research analyses the level of citizen satisfaction and the extent to which Awareness, Rules, Organizational, Income, Skill-Ability, and Service Facility Factor influence Citizen Satisfaction. This study uses a mixed methodology with a sequential explanatory strategy. Using the incidental sampling with Slovin's Formula to calculate the number of samples is 93 respondents. The quantitative data were analyzed by the SmartPLS 3.0 program. The findings showed that the level of citizen satisfaction is included in the category "Satisfied". Furthermore, the variable of Citizen Satisfaction is influenced by variables of Awareness, Rules, Organizational, Income, Skill-Ability dan Service Facility Factor for 70,5%. Whereas Awareness, Rules, Organizational, and Skill-Ability Factor has a significant influence on Citizen Satisfaction. Besides, Income and Service Facility Factor do not have a significant influence on Citizen Satisfaction.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201904.0042.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Organizational Economics & Management Keywords: performance-based management; performance measurement; good governance; local government; public agency
Online: 3 April 2019 (11:27:59 CEST)
Performance appraisal is a fundamental indicator in public accountability to achieve the good governance principles. Hence, this study aims to analyze the performance measurement that can improve performance on government agencies in South Sulawesi, Indonesia. The study was conducted in qualitative approach. The research found that non-integrated models of performance measurement in South Sulawesi are inefficient and ineffective. Inefficiency happens because it uses time and cost resources separately, while being ineffective is because both models focuses on each goal instead on performance goals and the process is not supported by the actual management.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201807.0541.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Sociology Keywords: Cameroon, agency; community; cultural assets; empowerment; relational networking; infrastructure; traditional authority
Online: 27 July 2018 (14:00:24 CEST)
Utilizing relational networking and cultural assets provide an arena for village development associations (VDAs) to fill the gaps in infrastructure in resource limited communities of Cameroon’s north-western region. Through case study, this study interrogates the foundational thesis of relational networking and cultural assets deployed to deal with social development challenges. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with community participants. Purposive sampling was used, and data were analysed and critically synthesized with comparable literature. Communities increasingly shoulder their own development through a multiplicity of agency with internal and external stakeholders. The analysis captures a typology of incremental cultural assets, galvanised and re-engineered, promoting a rejuvenated community. A multi-layered approach centred on intersecting elements with unvarying input from community members are perceptible. Though the translational benefits are not clear-cut, relational networking and incremental cultural assets hold out the prospect for community transformation in infrastructure provision - supply of fresh water, equipping schools, community halls, building roads, bridges and community halls. In the process, social inequality and other barriers of disadvantage are narrowed.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0141.v1
Subject: Arts & Humanities, Linguistics Keywords: micro language planning; educator agency; Chinese kindergarten; sustainable language policy and planning
Online: 12 September 2022 (09:48:41 CEST)
Micro-level language policy and planning (LPP) primarily concerns local actors' decision-making on matters in relation to language(s) and its users. Despite a growing body of literature focusing on micro language planning in educational settings, there is a scarcity of research examining early childhood education settings such as micro-level LPP context for young English language learners. By adopting a case study approach, the present study examined the educators' enactment of agency in micro-planning the English language education policy (LEP) in one Chinese kindergarten and the associated factors shaping their agency. Our study revealed that the sustainable implementation of the kindergarten English LEP depended on the principal, native English-speaking teachers, and the Chinese assistant teachers' different degrees of agency. Also, the research findings indicated an array of contextual and individual factors nested in a hierarchical structure that facilitated, guided, and constrained the educators' agency in a role-and circumstance-dependent manner. This study contributes to the pertinent literature by casting nuanced light on the different educators' contributions to the micro-level LPP against a national policy that does not endorse early-year English language education.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202107.0308.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: Relational benefits; calculative and affective commitment; long-term orientation; multi-channel agency
Online: 13 July 2021 (12:21:34 CEST)
Our study provides guidelines on how to build long-term customer relationship in the non-contract mechanism context. More specifically, the findings show that special, social, and core benefits influence calculative commitment, and operational and special benefits influence affective commitment. This study also supports that calculative and affective commitment play a crucial role in understanding multi-channel agencies’ loyalty. In sum, this study revealed that calculative and affective commitment can be considered as partial or full mediators in the relationship between RBs (relational benefits) and loyalty. This study not only contributed to the existing SET (social exchange theory) and RBs paradigm but also provided practical implications for food distribution management.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0099.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: COVID–19; combat; Inter–Agency Task Force (IATF); pandemic; safety and security; university
Online: 4 December 2020 (11:09:02 CET)
To define and evaluate the areas of consideration concerning in identifying the critical factors that top universities in Nueva Ecija, Philippines can be used for triangulating the courses of actions that can be applied to improve the current practices of universities towards its combat to the COVID–19 disease is the primary objective of this study. The researchers used a descriptive design of methodology by using questionnaire–checklist to scientifically describe the situation, problems, phenomenon, or program, or provide information about certain issues related to the virus outbreak. The respondents of the study were faculty and staff of five established universities in Nueva Ecija, Philippines wherein the researchers employed a non–probability sampling technique to be logically assumed as the representative of the entire population. The results of the study shown that the top universities in Nueva Ecija have made efforts to ensure the safety of university workers by complying with the Inter–Agency Task Force (IATF) protocols. It can be inferred, in reality, that there are some areas that must be improved especially when it comes to ensuring the welfare of the personnel who are still reporting to work even in this time of the pandemic. The researchers suggested an enhancement plan that can be adapted by these universities to resolve the concerns of the faculty and staff especially in reducing the spread of the virus without sacrificing the day–to–day transactions of the academic institutions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201703.0171.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Other Keywords: identity over time; Bayesian networks; multi-information; entity; persistence; integration; emergence; naturalising agency
Online: 21 March 2017 (16:23:00 CET)
We present a first formal analysis of specific and complete local integration. Complete local integration was previously proposed as a criterion for detecting entities or wholes in distributed dynamical systems. Such entities in turn were conceived to form the basis of a theory of emergence of agents within dynamical systems. Here, we give a more thorough account of the underlying formal measures. The main contribution is the disintegration theorem which reveals a special role of completely locally integrated patterns (what we call ι-entities) within the trajectories they occur in. Apart from proving this theorem we introduce the disintegration hierarchy and its refinement-free version as a way to structure the patterns in a trajectory. Furthermore we construct the least upper bound and provide a candidate for the greatest lower bound of specific local integration. Finally, we calculate the i-entities in small example systems as a first sanity check and find that ι-entities largely fulfil simple expectations.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0556.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Political Science Keywords: National Security Strategy; Defense Policy; Arms Sales; Defense Cooperation Security Agency; Foreign Military Sales
Online: 23 March 2021 (09:11:17 CET)
The aim of the study is to characterize the U.S. and Lithuanian defense cooperation from 1990–2020 including arms procurements. Findings suggest close defense cooperation between countries at Presidential, Congressional, and Defense Ministry/Secretary levels. The most developed cooperation areas are joint participation in international operations, improvements of the Lithuanian Armed Forces’ capabilities, and an increase of the U.S. military presence in the Baltic region. An analysis of Lithuanian defense procurements between 1990–2020 indicates that the majority of defense armaments were acquired from the U.S. using the Foreign Military Sales venue while other options to obtain armaments were not used.
CASE REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0466.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: anarchic hand syndrome; DTI; white matter disconnection; lesion mapping; sense of agency; posterior lesions.
Online: 18 March 2021 (10:09:37 CET)
The anarchic hand syndrome refers to an inability to control the movements of one’s own hand which acts as if it had a will of its own. The symptoms may differ depending on whether the brain lesion is anterior, posterior, callosal or subcortical, but the relative classifications are not conclusive. This study investigates the role of white matter disconnections in a patient whose symptoms are inconsistent with the mapping of the lesion site. A repeated neuropsychological investigation was associated with a review of the literature on the topic to identify the frequency of various different symptoms relating to this syndrome. Furthermore, an analysis of the neuroimaging regarding structural connectivity allowed us to investigate the grey matter lesions and white matter disconnections. The results indicated that some of the patient’s symptoms were associated with structures that, although not directly damaged, were dysfunctional due to a disconnection in their networks. This suggests that the anarchic hand may be considered as a disconnection syndrome involving the integration of multiple antero-posterior, insular and interhemispheric networks. In order to comprehend this rare syndrome better, the clinical and neuroimaging data need to be integrated with the clinical reports available in the literature on the topic.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201711.0197.v1
Subject: Biology, Ecology Keywords: affordance; umwelt; agency; active inference; allostasis; immune cognition; situated Darwinism; information; entropy; free energy principle
Online: 30 November 2017 (09:02:17 CET)
The relationship of the animal with its environment has been of longstanding interest in philosophy and science. Here I provide a brief introduction to concepts that place an emphasis on mutualism as the basis of organism - environment interaction, in contrast to the long standing view that the environment exerts an instrumental role in shaping the organism. Two influential theories have been von Uexküll’s theory of umwelt and Gibson’s theory of affordances. The former envisioned the animal as immersed in its surroundings (umwelt) to form a functional unit. In a similar manner, the latter theory describes a unity between 1) environmental information that provides the animal with opportunities for action (affordances) and 2) the ability of the animal to perceive and engage with those affordances. These views have influenced more recent ecological models of the organism as the functional unit of biology and have also influenced models of immune function. In ecological models, agency is seen as the ability of the organism to predict and control its engagement with the environment in order to maintain its integrity. The predominant contemporary model of neural function in which perception and action are understood to operate through Bayes-like active inference complements the concept of agency as proposed by the mutualism models. However, it is suggested that rather than a constant mutualism, encounters between organism and environment range over a dynamic spectrum from dualism to mutualism. It is also suggested that along this spectrum, agency emerges when the balance of instrumentality shifts from the environment to the organism, and that the balance of this relationship can further progress towards a felicitous mutualism. Meaning emerges between environmental information and an agent as opportunity for action. Implications for opportunities to foster agency in animals within our care is noted.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201706.0009.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Other Keywords: Sentinel-2; remote sensing; European Space Agency; Copernicus; continental; cloud-free; composite; darkest pixel; maximum NDVI
Online: 2 June 2017 (05:03:53 CEST)
The processing of cloud free geo-referenced imagery is one of the preliminary processing step of any land application. This letter describe the methodology developed to obtain a seamless cloud free composite of Africa for 2016 using Sentinel-2A data at 10 meters resolution freely available from the European Space Agency. The method is based on an hybrid method resulting from the merging of the two most robust time series methods namely the "darkest pixel" and the "maximum NDVI" previously developed with AVHRR time series.
Subject: Life Sciences, Biophysics Keywords: consciousness 1; subjective experience 2; will 3; agency 4; self 5; psychopathology 6; treatment 7; transcranial near infrared light 8; biophotomodulation 9
Online: 25 May 2021 (08:44:47 CEST)
In this paper I will address Dr. Sonne’s questions about will, agency, choice, consciousness, relevant brain regions, impacts of disorders and their therapeutics, and I will do this by referring to my theory, Dual-brain Psychology, which posits that within most of us there exist two mental agencies with different experiences, wills, choices, and behaviors. Each of these agencies is associated as a trait with one brain hemisphere (either left or right) and its composite regions. One of these agencies is more adversely affected by past traumas and is more immature and more symptomatic while the other is more mature and healthier. The theory has extensive experimental support through 17 peer-reviewed publications with clinical and non-clinical research. I will discuss how this theory relates to the questions that Dr. Sonne presented and will discuss also my published theory on the physical nature of subjective experience and its relation to the brain and how that theory interacts with DBP, and how the 2 theories relate to subjective experience, will, behavior, psychopathology and its treatment.