REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201608.0045.v1
Subject: Engineering, Civil Engineering Keywords: railway infrastructure; high-speed rail; tracks; risk; management and monitoring; climate change; global warming; adaptation; operational readiness
Online: 5 August 2016 (05:11:02 CEST)
Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and many of the observed changes are unprecedented over five decades to millennia. Globally the atmosphere and ocean is increasingly getting warmer, the amount of ice on the earth is decreasing over the oceans, and the sea level has risen. According to Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the total increasing temperature globally averaged combined land and surface between the average of the 1850-1900 period and the 2003 to 2012 period is 0.78 °C (0.72 to 0.85). But should we prepare for such the relatively small change? The importance is not the mean of the warming but the considerable likelihood of climate change that could trigger extreme natural hazards. The impact and the risk of climate change associated with railway infrastructure have not been fully addressed in the literature due to the difference in local environmental parameters. On the other hand, the current railway network in Malaysia, over the last decade, has been significantly affected by severe weather conditions such as rainfall, lightning, wind and very high temperatures. Our research findings point out the extremes that can lead to asset system failure, degraded operation and ultimately, delays to train services. During the period of flood, the embankment of the track can be swept away and bridge can be demolished, while during drought, the embankment of the track can suffer from soil desiccation and embankment deterioration, high temperature increases the risk of track buckling and high winds can result in vegetation or foreign object incursion on to the infrastructure as well as additional quasi-static burden exerted. This review is of significant importance for planning and design of the newly proposed high speed rail link between Malaysia and Singapore.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0823.v1
Subject: Business, Economics And Management, Business And Management Keywords: Electric transport; technology readiness; political readiness; societal readiness; economic readiness.
Online: 13 September 2023 (07:20:44 CEST)
The main objective of this paper is to develop a readiness index model that can serve as an analytical tool for exploring the achievements of electrification of transportation systems. We have applied this readiness index model to evaluate the readiness positioning of China, Norway, and Sweden to-wards transport electrification. We have chosen these three countries as they represent diversity among countries that are in the process of adopting electric transport system solutions. Our developed readiness index model has four key dimensions, technological readiness, political readiness, societal readiness, and economic readiness. The embeddedness of all four dimensions in one model provides a multi-perspective way of analyzing and evaluating the readiness levels of countries moving towards transforming the transportation system. Therefore, we named the model a “multidimensional readiness index.” Our main conclusions are that the political processes and political decisiveness involved are the most important factors followed by the societal needs and economic ability, with the current technology available as the fourth. Without the participation of dedicated and determined political decision-makers being involved, the other three factors are challenging to obtain. Political decision-makers need to facilitate the use of economic means to support the transformation in the society and affected industries to balance the initial economic disadvantages of the electrically powered systems until they pass the cost disadvantage turning point. The development of the relevant technology is no longer a great barrier as it was at the beginning of this transformation, about 20 years ago. The technology for electrically powered transportation systems and devices is widely available now, although it is continuously evolving and being improved. Associated industries cannot be expected to initiate, finance, take the risk, and take the lead in this global societal transformation without clear and strong political support.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0926.v1
Subject: Business, Economics And Management, Human Resources And Organizations Keywords: Organizational Diagnosis; Special Education; Readiness for change; Weisbord’s model
Online: 12 May 2023 (10:28:18 CEST)
Organizational diagnosis (OD) is a comprehensive review of an organization's objectives, re-source allocation, and utilization to achieve those objectives. This study employed OD to en-hance the effectiveness of the Department of Special Education within the Government of Punjab. A questionnaire based on Weisbord's six-box organizational model called the Organ-izational Diagnostic Questionnaire (ODQ), was administered to N=1200 participants, consist-ing of heads of top, middle, and bottom tiers at district and tehsil levels of special education schools, centers, and the main office. Out of these, 506 participants voluntarily completed the ODQ survey. The study findings indicated that the employees of the department possess a good understanding of the organization's objectives. However, there is a lack of opportunities for employee participation in departmental discussions, centralized decision-making, irra-tional task distribution, and unsupportive allocation of human resources. Additionally, there is poor communication, unsatisfactory promotions, incentives, and a lack of knowledge shar-ing among employees, as well as poor inter-relationships, conflicts, and ineffective help-seeking mechanisms. The study also revealed low readiness for change in the organization. Respondents' opinions differed significantly based on their qualifications, job experience, years served, and gender. To improve the department's capacity to absorb change, the study recommends enhancing collaboration and inter-departmental communication, soliciting comprehensive input from all tiers, and promoting employee participation, supportive supervision, and communication. The study contributes to the body of knowledge on OD and highlights the need for improved communication, collaboration, and employee participation, as well as a supportive and supervisory support system to enhance the effectiveness of organizations.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202212.0376.v2
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Anatomy And Physiology Keywords: Sport; Heart Rate; Breathe Rate; Monitoring; Functional Athlete Readiness; Impedance; Rheography
Online: 6 January 2023 (02:04:00 CET)
Background/Objectives: The purpose of the proposed study is disclosure of correlations between the dynamics of the Breathe Rate (BR) and Heart Rate (HR) when performing the intermittent physical operation at maximum power on a cycle ergometer.Methods: The stage on the study of the General functional athlete readiness (GFAR) performed using the sports standard “Red Engine” and the cycle ergometer in 16 volunteers (10 men, 6 women) whose average age was 21±1.17 years. To determine the sports potential of the volunteers in this study, we used own Coefficient of Anaerobic Capacity (CANAC Q, beats). Continuous recording of the heart rate and respiratory rate of volunteers in the maximum power sports test was carried out by the “RheoCardioMonitor” device with an athlete functional readiness module based on the method of Transthoracic electrical impedance rheography (TEIRG).Results: The degree of correlation of functional indicators (M, HRM, GFAR) with CANAC Q for the group in full (n=80) occurred at a very high level, which confirmed the effectiveness of using the Coefficient of Anaerobic Capacity (CANAC Q) in assessing the general functional athlete readiness of the volunteers. Conclusions: CANAC Q measured in “beats” of the heart and recorded very accurately using the method of transthoracic electrical impedance rheography (TEIRG). For this reason as promising sports PSM-system, CANAC Q can replace the methods for determining the functional athlete readiness by blood lactate concentration and maximum oxygen consumption.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0313.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Keywords: Learning Management System (LMS); perceived role; readiness; integration
Online: 11 March 2021 (11:06:24 CET)
The rapid development of information and communication technologies has led to the use of new and digital technologies in education which involves combinations of text, graphics, audio, video, animations and other eLearning resources such as authoring tools, Learning Management System (LMS), Mobile learning and others. Arguably, using LMS leaves much to be desired. The inherent problem here is that the future of extensive adoption of ICT via LMS to enhance and promote classroom interaction in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) is bleak. This is worrisome given that the country is lagging far behind in the innovative use of this web 2.0 technology to impart knowledge. Further, the low-level application of LMS in instruction connotes the loss of inherent advantages in its adoption. Also, the online setting which makes students less nervous and interactive, sharing of ideas and viewpoints; and a host of other benefit will be lost. While evidence has shown that LMS is not a new phenomenon, the use of LMS in ODL is still at its infancy, particularly in Nigeria. Research in this area is rare. A quick search on prominent research databases could testify that. It is on this thrust that this study investigates University of Ibadan undergraduate students’ perceived roles and readiness towards integration of learning management system into teaching and learning.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0370.v2
Subject: Social Sciences, Cognitive Science Keywords: Awareness; Readiness; Covid-19; Bangladesh; Knowledge; Attitude; Practice
Online: 25 June 2020 (15:57:11 CEST)
Bangladesh has adopted some special steps to control the quick spread of the COVID-19 pandemic situation. However, the local residents’ knowledge, attitudes, and practices towards the disease have a direct impact on the success of the controlling measures taken by the state. This article explores knowledge (K) about preventions, attitude (A) to the disease, and practices (P) of preventing COVID-19 situation of the young age groups residing in Bangladesh. Quantitative data were collected online using a KAP questionnaire from 932 participants. Results show the population is generally aware of the symptoms, keeping social distance by staying home and are concerned about re-spreading after the lock-down period. However, they are quite unsure about the possible medicines frequently talked about in the media and the necessity of avoiding animal protein. One of the major limitations is, these findings should not be generalized due to the low number of participants compared to the total population in Bangladesh.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0812.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Health Policy And Services Keywords: U.S. Veteran health; Comorbidities; Risk-factors; Military readiness; COVID
Online: 12 June 2023 (09:32:26 CEST)
Chronic diseases affect a disproportionate number of United States (U.S.) Veterans, causing significant long-term health issues and affecting entitlement spending. This longitudinal study examined the health status of U.S. Veterans as compared to non-Veterans pre- and post-COVID utilizing the annual Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) survey data. Age-adjusted descriptive point estimates were generated independently for 2003 through 2021, while complex weighted panel data were generated from 2011 and onward. General linear modeling revealed that the average U.S. Veteran reports a higher prevalence of disease conditions except for mental health disorders when compared to the non-Veteran. These findings were consistent with both pre- and post-COVID, however, both groups reported a higher prevalence of mental health issues during the pandemic years. The findings suggest that there have been no improvements in reducing Veteran comorbidities to non-Veteran levels and that COVID adversely affected the mental health of both populations.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0478.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Other Keywords: Green Climate Funds; Readiness Grants; Adaptation; SIDS; mainstreaming; adaptive capacity
Online: 8 May 2023 (08:44:10 CEST)
The impacts of climate change are already felt across the globe, and (SIDS) are at the forefront. Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) are extremely vulnerable to climate change and adaptation is crucial, however they often lack funding or the fiscal capacity to make the necessary invest-ments and require support from climate finance instruments. The Green Climate Fund (GCF) was designed with the objective of achieving a “paradigm shift” towards low-carbon and climate resilient country-driven development pathway. Despite the amounts invested, assessing the impacts of climate finance on adaptation and adaptive capacity, particularly at the institutional level remains a challenge. Researchers identified two key components for more efficient adapta-tion policies at the national level: the degree of adaptation mainstreaming and institutional adaptive capacity. In SIDS, institutional capacity at the national level is seen as a key component to achieve the objectives of climate change strategies, and is supported by several programmes, including the Green Climate Fund Readiness Preparatory Support Programmes. However, to date few studies have analysed the linkages between climate finance, adaptation mainstreaming and adaptive institutional capacity. Through the review of the Readiness Grants and semi-structured interviews in three Caribbean SIDS, this research assess how climate finance may promote in-stitutional change through the mainstreaming of adaptation policies at the national level and contribute to more institutional adaptive capacity. It shows that the grants had a positive impact, which can be limited to by the strength of the institutions in place. These results demonstrate that access to climate finance can create a window of opportunity for countries to accelerate institu-tional change and allow to make recommendations on how to maximise the impacts adaptation funds. More in-depth studies would be needed to examine the complementary influence of the different climate finance flows (multilateral or bilateral) and their interplay with national institu-tional mechanisms.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0422.v1
Subject: Business, Economics And Management, Other Keywords: Industry 4.0; corporate strategy; Industry 4.0 readiness; digital technology; industrial digitalisation
Online: 6 June 2023 (08:56:14 CEST)
The contemporary discourse focuses on the fourth industrial revolution and its impact on compa-nies. An explicative, quantitative, questionnaire survey was conducted with managers of 101 companies in Hungary and 54 in Austria. Our study focused on assessing their preparedness for Industry 4.0 and the key factors they take into account when implementing Industry 4.0 initiatives. We also examined whether there is a correlation between the areas in which companies have made improvements to support Industry 4.0. To complement our quantitative analysis, we conducted a series of four semi-structured interviews with two Hungarian and two Austrian companies. The aim of the interviews was to further investigate the digital readiness of companies and to formulate recommendations for companies venturing into the field of digitalisation. A particular focus was put on comparing the digital maturity of these two neighbouring Central European countries, given the significant differences in their digital maturity as shown by the macro indicators of the Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI). Therefore, we conducted a micro-level analysis to investigate the extent to which DESI scores correspond to the digital performance of companies at the orga-nisational level.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202301.0504.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Political Science Keywords: science policy; technology policy; technology; technology maturity level; technology readiness level; technology commercialization; technology transfer; university technology transfer
Online: 27 January 2023 (10:45:25 CET)
This paper presents the results of a study aimed at understanding how technology maturity level influences the incidence of university technology transfer to the private sector. The study examined the topic from the perspective of private sector organizations. It used data from a random sample of patent applications filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and a theoretically guided sampling of multiple cases of private sector organizations that contemplated obtaining and assimilating technologies created at universities in the United States. The patent application data were analyzed using nonparametric statistical techniques and the case data were analyzed using qualitative comparative analysis (QCA). The findings of the study suggest that the typical maturity level of technologies created at U.S. universities is a TRL-5 or lower on as scale adapted from the NASA technology readiness level (TRL) scale. A technology maturity level of TRL-6 or higher is likely an insufficient but necessary part of at least one unnecessary but sufficient configuration of conditions that tends to result in the occurrence of university technology transfer. However, under certain circumstances, a technology maturity level of at least TRL-6 could be a sufficient but unnecessary condition for the occurrence of university technology transfer. These findings have several important implications. First, they provide support for the notion that university technology transfer is subject to causal complexity. Moreover, it may be possible to increase the incidence of university technology transfer in the United States by implementing public policy and practices that explicitly take technology maturity level into consideration.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201910.0247.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Behavior Sciences Keywords: visual contrast; perceived relative object depth; 2D images; sound frequency; two alternative forced-choice; response times; high-probability decision; readiness to respond; probability summation
Online: 22 October 2019 (03:34:45 CEST)
Pieron's and Chocholle’s seminal psychophysical work predicts that human response time to information relative to visual contrast and/or sound frequency decreases when contrast intensity or sound frequency increases. The goal of this study is to bring to the fore the ability of individuals to use visual contrast intensity and sound frequency in combination for faster perceptual decisions of relative depth (“nearer”) in planar (2D) object configurations on the basis of physical variations in luminance contrast. Computer controlled images with two abstract patterns of varying contrast intensity, one on the left and one on the right, preceded or not by a pure tone of varying frequency, were shown to healthy young humans in controlled experimental sequences. Their task (two-alternative forced-choice) was to decide as quickly as possible which of two patterns, the left or the right one, in a given image appeared to “stand out as if it were nearer” in terms of apparent (subjective) visual depth. The results show that the combinations of varying relative visual contrast with sounds of varying frequency exploited here produced an additive effect on choice response times in terms of facilitation, where a stronger visual contrast combined with a higher sound frequency produced shorter forced-choice response times. This new effect is predicted by cross-modal audio-visual probability summation.