ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201609.0116.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Pediatrics Keywords: Neonate; qualitative research; Southeast Asia
Online: 29 September 2016 (11:17:06 CEST)
Global coverage and scale up of interventions to reduce newborn mortality remains low, though progress has been achieved in improving newborn survival in many low-income settings. An important factor in the success of newborn health interventions, and moving to scale, is appropriate design of community-based programs and strategies for local implementation. We report the results of formative research undertaken to inform the design of a newborn health intervention in Cambodia. Information was gathered on newborn care practices over a period of three months using multiple qualitative methods of data collection in the primary health facility and home setting. Analysis of the data indicated important gaps, both at home and facility level, between recommended newborn care practices and those typical in the study area. The results of this formative research have informed strategies for behavior change and improving referral of sick infants in the subsequent implementation study. Collection and dissemination of data on newborn care practices from settings such as these can contribute to efforts to advance survival, growth and development of newborns for intervention research, and for future newborn health programming.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0043.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Anesthesiology Keywords: anaesthesia; workforce challenges; qualitative research; Pakistan
Online: 5 September 2022 (04:30:46 CEST)
Global anaesthesia workforce limitations contribute to emigration of skilled anaesthesiologists from lower- to higher-income countries, jeopardizing workforce balance and patient outcomes in Pakistan. This study aims to explore challenges experienced by anaesthesiologists in Punjab, Pakistan’s most populous province, and necessary changes to encourage their retention. We conducted a qualitative study to examine perspectives of anaesthesiologists who chose to serve in Pakistan. We drew data from semi-structured interviews conducted with 25 purposively-sampled consultant anaesthesiologists. We analysed data thematically and distinguished the practice hurdles faced by anaesthesiologists in public and private hospitals of Punjab. The main reasons to work abroad could be broadly categorized under two inductive themes, i.e. practice hurdles in public and private sector. Both had distinct issues which compromised the number and quality of anaesthesia workforce in the country. The key outcomes were workplace security, promotion/incentive issues and gender inequalities in the government sector. The private sector had improper salaries and facilities, anaesthesiologist’s dependency on surgeons for getting work and lack of out-of-theatre practice which minimise the scope and earnings of anaesthesiologist within the country. There is a need to overcome surgeon dependency and hospital manipulation by fixing salary percentages for each surgical case and encouraging direct patient-anaesthesiologist relationships.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0547.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: General Practitioner; Prevention; Suicide; Qualitative study
Online: 24 May 2021 (09:23:49 CEST)
Background: General Practitioners (GP) have an important role in the prevention of suicidal behavior. The purpose of this study was to explore their views and experiences of identifying and assessing suicidal ideation. Methods: Ten GPs were recruited through convenience sampling, based on accessibility, interest and willingness to participate. In-depth interviews were carried out and results transcribed ver-batim. Aspects of experiences with suicidal patients emerged through the thematic analyses process. Results: The GPs described the varied clinical picture when patients presented in their office. How they identified depressive symptoms apart from originally somatic complaints, formed a trusting relationship and addressed suicide ideation. They described customized interventions as well as obstacles and factors that facilitated communication: time, own personal traits, pa-tient’s disclosure and organizational barriers. Conclusions: The levels of the suicidal process among patients in general practice vary greatly. GPs adjust their appraisals to profundity understand and intervene in order to prevent a crisis to escalate into subsequent suicidal behavior.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0789.v1
Online: 30 April 2021 (15:19:44 CEST)
Patriarchy culture is formed indirectly through a concept of a man as a head of family or the holder of the highest position. It leads to viewpoint that catcalling is assumed normally. Although catcalling seems like a compliment, but it is quite different with the exact compliment. The basic difference from them both is a compliment comes to sincerely from its giver, meanwhile catcalling is aimed to harass indirectly to women. This study aims to give an information and solution about the catcalling expansion in public areas especially by women community. The use of method to finish this study is qualitative design from literature sources for the last four years about problems of catcalling. The result of this study is giving information about catcalling by providing data and looking for solution related to catcalling phenomenon.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0556.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Iran; active ageing; elderly; qualitative study
Online: 27 October 2020 (15:14:45 CET)
Background: Active ageing is a multidimensional, relative, and context-dependent concept with different paths and outcomes. The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore personal active ageing strategies in a specific context. Method: Following a directed content analyze procedure, we conduct semi structured individual interview with 39 elder (men and women) between the ages of 60-97 years that selected with purposeful sampling .data collection and analysis were concurrent. We analyzed the data from interviews, written narratives, and field notes using directed content analyze. The Reliability of data was fulfilled in accordance Lincoln and Guba criteria. We stopped data collection when no new concept was added and data saturation occurred. Results: Based on the experience of elders, we identified 5 categories: 1) Preventive 2) Coping 3) Internal self-control 4) Coherence maintenance strategies 5) Opportunity exploiting strategies. These described the active ageing strategies when encountering with age related change. Utilizing these strategies, the elder accompanied the life time. Conclusion: The finding suggests that active ageing is a continuous process in confronting age related change. The identified strategies can help to promote active ageing by familiarizing older with opportunities of life and training them in how to use these strategies.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202109.0371.v1
Online: 22 September 2021 (10:20:11 CEST)
The newly discovered coronavirus (COVID-19) has disrupted traditional methods of conducting research, particularly qualitative research. However, there remains a number of methods by which qualitative data can still be collected. These include the use of digital voice, video, and text-based tools, online surveys, and content analysis. Text-based sources can help to overcome the limitations of time and space, and also can be cost-effective. This chapter draws from data collected from 12 participants across Zimbabwe and demonstrates how these tools can be used to generate data or to sample data that is already available to satisfy research questions and meet research objectives. It recommends researchers to experiment with new ways of collecting qualitative data while also observing safety protocols and ethical considerations.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Stroke; Qualitative; Narrative; Master Plot; Experience; Perception
Online: 30 July 2021 (15:10:28 CEST)
(1) Background; limited research exists which considers master plots expressed by individuals with Stroke. The literature so far has focused on identified pre-established illness narrative types; (2). Methods: A narrative method was selected and a purposive sample of individuals with Stroke are identified. A categorical-form analysis was undertaken; (3) Results: A narrative master plot named overcoming the monster is identified and explored for its components and located temporally for each participant; (4) Conclusions: Health care professionals need to understand the importance of understanding the master plot overcoming the monster. This research supports the need for health care professionals to recognise and support narratives by listening in a non-directive way.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0172.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: Qualitative research; Regulations; Ethical issues; Sustainable production
Online: 7 December 2020 (15:21:23 CET)
Italy is the leading European producer of rice. The transition to organic farming could represent a solution for environmental protection, as well as for the economic sustainability of farms, consumer safety and as a measure of climate mitigation, but it currently displays several weaknesses in the control and certification system. The objective of the current study is to propose advice for improving the control and certification scheme in the organic rice sector. To achieve this aim, we adopted a qualitative methodology based on participant observation at stakeholders’ meetings, focus groups, community-led workshops and deep interviews with relevant local actors. Findings show that there are some solutions to mitigate the weakness of the Italian certification scheme. The study also produces managerial implications to improve the Italian organic rice system.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201807.0545.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Pediatrics Keywords: qualitative, mindfulness, meditation, chronic illness, adolescents, eHealth
Online: 27 July 2018 (15:34:58 CEST)
Mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) have been shown to improve health and well-being in adolescents with chronic illnesses. Because they are most often delivered in person in a group setting, there are several barriers that limit access to MBIs for youth with limited mobility or who cannot access in-person MBIs in their communities. The objective of this study was to determine if eHealth is a viable platform to increase accessibility to MBIs for teens with chronic illnesses. This study reports the qualitative results of a mixed method randomized trial describing the experience of the Mindful Awareness and Resilience Skills for Adolescents (MARS-A) program, an 8-week MBI, delivered either in person or via eHealth. Participants were adolescents between the ages of 13 and 18 with a chronic illness recruited at a tertiary pediatric hospital in Toronto, Canada. Individual semi-structured post-participation audio-video interviews were conducted by a research assistant. A multiple-pass inductive process was used to review interview transcripts and interpret emergent themes from the participants’ lived experiences. Fifteen participants completed post-participation interviews. Four distinct themes emerged from participants in both the in-person and eHealth groups: creation of a safe space, fostering peer support and connection, integration of mindfulness skills into daily life and improved well-being through the application of mindfulness. Results from this study suggest that eHealth may be an acceptable and feasible mode of delivery for MBIs in adolescents with chronic illnesses. EHealth should be considered in future studies as a promising avenue to increase access to MBIs in this population.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201802.0015.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: iodine; pregnancy; qualitative research; awareness; perceptions; nutrition
Online: 2 February 2018 (07:29:44 CET)
Iodine is essential for thyroid hormones synthesis and normal neurodevelopment; however, 60% of pregnant women do not meet the WHO recommended intake. Using a qualitative design, we explored perceptions, awareness and experiences of pregnancy nutrition, focusing on iodine. Women in the perinatal period (n=48) were interviewed and filled in a food frequency questionnaire for iodine. Almost all participants achieved the recommended 150 μg/day intake for non-pregnant adults (99%), but only 81% met the increased demands of pregnancy (250 μg/day). Most were unaware of the importance, sources and recommendations of iodine intake. Attitudes to dairy products consumption were positive (e.g. helps with heartburn; easy to increase). Increased fish consumption was considered less achievable, with barriers around taste, smell, heartburn and morning sickness. Community midwives were the main recognised provider of dietary advice. The dietary advice received focused most often on multivitamin supplements rather than food sources. Analysis highlighted a clear theme of commitment to change behaviour, motivated by pregnancy, with desired focus on user-friendly documentation and continued involvement of the health services. The study highlights the importance of redirecting advice on dietary requirements in pregnancy and offers practical suggestions from women in the perinatal period as the main stakeholder group.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202107.0571.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: university; HEI; students; sustainability; UBC; qualitative study; perception
Online: 26 July 2021 (11:48:43 CEST)
As sustainability gains significance within Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) worldwide, the University of British Columbia (UBC) stands as one of the global champions of sustainability. In 2019, Times Higher Education ranked UBC as number one in the world for taking urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts and ranked one in Canada for making cities inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable. Over the years, UBC students have been instrumental to sustainability on the UBC campus by advocating for divestment, climate justice, and other sustainability commitments and projects in the university. Hence, this qualitative study examines students’ engagement with or their perception of the university’s sustainability programs and image. The study found that students acknowledged and commended the university’s sustainability efforts in teaching, research, providing sustainability-related opportunities for students, and in sustainability operations. However, students also addressed hesitation on the part of university administration in championing climate justice and bolder climate action. The conclusion is that continued support and engagement with students are critical for UBC to achieve its climate action plans and sustainability goals in general. The study contributes to the ongoing discourse on the influential role of young people and the youth climate movement in catalyzing ambitious global climate action at all levels.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0726.v1
Subject: Biology, Agricultural Sciences & Agronomy Keywords: Carboxymethylcellulose; Pectin; Plum; Qualitative attributes; Enzymatic activity; Postharvest
Online: 31 July 2020 (03:04:33 CEST)
Polysaccharide-based edible coatings are served as an attractive preservation method for postharvest maintenance of most fruits. The current study examined the effect of carboxymethylcellulose (CMC)- and pectin (Pec)- based edible coatings on weight loss, firmness, total soluble solids (TSS), pH¬, titratable acidity (TA), vitamin C (vit C), total phenolics, anthocyanin and flavonoid contents, total antioxidant capacity (based on DPPH) and the activities of peroxidase (POD), polyphenol oxidase (PPO) and polygalacturonase (PG) enzymes during cold storage. The results showed that each coating and their combinations caused positive effects in all measured parameters except weight loss. The applied coatings preserved firmness and improved total phenols, anthocyanin and flavonoid contents, antioxidant capacity and POD activity. In addition, the coatings retarded TSS and pH enhancement and TA and vit C loss and decreased PPO and PG activities. It could be stated that CMC at 1 % and Pec at 1.5 % separately demonstrated the best results at most measured parameters; and among the combinations 0.5 % Pec + 1.5 % CMC acted better than the other treatments. Henceforth, application of CMC and/or Pec and/or their combinations would be considered as favorable approaches to improve postharvest quality characteristics of plum fruit.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201903.0241.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Other Keywords: vegetable intake; vegetable cultivation; qualitative study; Japanese, adults
Online: 26 March 2019 (10:49:20 CET)
Objective: We examined the reasons why vegetable cultivation increases or does not increase vegetable intake among adult Japanese vegetable growers.Materials and Methods: A qualitative cross-sectional study using a self-completed anonymous questionnaire was sent to participants (aged 20–74 years residing in three areas of a city in Gunma Prefecture, Japan) in September 2016. The questionnaire addressed perceptions of whether vegetable cultivation would increase vegetable intake, with four possible answers: strongly disagree, disagree, agree, and strongly agree. Respondents were then asked reasons for their view, with free-text responses. We also asked about participants’ characteristics and whether they found that growing vegetables had changed their vegetable intake and access to vegetables. We categorized the free-text answers by content.Results: We analyzed 442 answers, and reasons for vegetable growing increasing vegetable intake were grouped into five categories: “availability,” “purpose of cultivation,” “quality,” “increased positive emotions toward vegetables,” and “unconsciousness”; for it not increasing intake were also grouped into five categories: “limited quantities,” “negative emotions toward vegetables,” “cultivation for a purpose other than eating vegetables,” “access to vegetables from other sources,” and “limits associated with self-cultivation.”Conclusion: We found five main reasons why vegetable growing may and may not increase vegetable intake.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201902.0103.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: Patient Safety Climate Attitudes, Hospital Emergency Department, Qualitative
Online: 12 February 2019 (11:36:02 CET)
Introduction: The attitudes of doctors and nurses toward patient safety is a significant factor in hospital safety climates and medical error rates. Yet, there are very few studies of patient safety attitudes in Saudi hospitals and none conducted in hospital emergency departments. Aims: The current study aims to investigate the discrepancy between the patient safety attitudes of doctors and nurses in a Saudi hospital emergency department. Materials and Method: The study employed a qualitative research designvia semi-structured interviews with Saudi and non-Saudi doctors and nurses working in a Saudi hospital emergency department to determine their attitudes and experiences about the patient safety climate. Results: The findings showed doctors and nurse held some similar safety attitudes, however, nurses reported issues with doctors with respect to their teamwork, communication, and patient safety attitudes. Moreover, several barriers to the patient safety climate were identified such as limits to resources, teamwork, communication, and incident reporting. Conclusion: The findings provide one of the few research contributions to knowledge on the differential patient safety attitudes of Saudi and non-Saudi doctors and nurses and suggest the application of such knowledge would enhance positive patient outcomes in emergency departments.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201712.0164.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: pre-hospital emergency; review; qualitative study; patient satisfaction
Online: 25 December 2017 (06:41:26 CET)
Objective. To describe patient satisfaction with pre-hospital emergency knowledge and determine if patients and professionals share a common vision on the satisfaction predictors. Methods. A qualitative study conducted in two phases. First, a systematic review following the PRISMA protocol was carried out searching publications between January 2000 and July 2016 in Medline, Scopus, and Cochrane. Second, three focus groups involving professionals (advisers and healthcare providers) and a total of 79 semi-structured interviews involving patients were conducted to obtain information about what dimensions of care were a priority for patients. Results. Thirty-three relevant studies were identified. A majority conducted in Europe using questionnaires. They pointed out a very high level of satisfaction of callers and patients. Delay with the assistance and the ability for resolution of the case are the elements that overlap in fostering satisfaction. The published studies neither reviewed the overall care process nor related the measurement of the real time in responding to an emergency with the satisfaction. The patients and professionals concurred in their assessments about the most relevant elements for patient satisfaction, although safety was not a predictive factor for patients. Response capacity and perceived capacity for resolving the situation were crucial factors for satisfaction. This qualitative approach yielded assistance targets to be improved. Conclusions. Published studies have assessed similar dimensions of satisfaction. Furthermore, despite the fact that few explanations may be given due to the no face to face attention, taking into account the patient’s emotional needs or maintaining contact with the patient until the emergency services arrive are high predictors of the satisfaction.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202201.0279.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: Paramedic; Violence; Qualitative Research; Operational Stress Injury; Mental Health
Online: 19 January 2022 (16:04:48 CET)
Purpose Violence against paramedics is a complex – but underreported – problem. Extant research suggests organizational culture may play a role in sustaining cultural norms that downplay the significance and limit reporting. Our objective was to qualitatively explore paramedics’ experience with violence, with particular emphasis on understanding how organizational culture contributes to under-reporting. Approach We surveyed paramedics from a single, large, urban service in Ontario, Canada, asking participants to describe their experiences with violence, including whether – and why or why not – the incidents were reported. Within a constructivist epistemology, we used inductive thematic analysis with successive rounds of coding to identify and then define features of organizational culture that limit reporting. Findings A total of 196 (33% of eligible) paramedics completed the survey. Fully 98% of participants disclosed having experienced some form of violence; however only a minority (40%) reported the incidents to management, or the police (21%). We defined a framework within which a lack of support from management, and consequences for offenders, implicitly positions the ability of paramedics to “brush off” violent encounters as an expected professional competency. Disclosing emotional or psychological distress in response to violent encounters invited questions as to whether the individual is personally suited to paramedic work. Originality While the extant research has indicated that underreporting is a problem, our findings shed light on why – a critical first step in addressing what has been described as a serious public health problem.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202109.0345.v1
Subject: Keywords: endometriosis; qualitative research; gynaecology; infertility; illness experience; health service
Online: 20 September 2021 (16:14:24 CEST)
Background: Endometriosis affects between 1% to 10% of women worldwide; it is associated with a significant burden on the woman, her relationships, productivity, mental health, family and society. Aim:To contribute to the current understanding of the impact of endometriosis on women’s lives by integrating qualitative research findings to explore the illness experiences of women living with endometriosis. Study design:Synthesis of qualitative data using Britten’s meta-ethnography.Methods:Six bibliographic databases (Medline, Embase, CINAHL, Web of Science, Scopus and PsycINFO) and Google Scholar were searched for peer-reviewed papers published in English language from inception of until August 6th 2021. Results: Fifteen studies were included in the data synthesis. The review included a total of 354 women from fourteen countries (including South Africa, Iran, England, Australia and United States of America), of age range 16-78 years. Subjects represented diverse ethnicities, cultures and native languages distributed across socioeconomic classes. Representation of all stages of endometriosis was included.Findings incorporate the following nine categories into a conceptual model: disease symptoms; health services experience; isolation and limited social participation; limited physical functioning; a coterie of emotions; sex and intimate relationships; infertility; work life and education; coping strategies and support. Diagnostic delays, persistent symptoms, healthcare costs and inadequate education to patients about the disease; all intersect into a web of struggles and incoherence for patients. Conclusion:Women with endometriosis living in various countries report similar illness experiences; although gender roles, culture and socio-economic status may act as mediating factors that shape an individual’s illness experience.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202107.0132.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, General Psychology Keywords: child; play; risky play; adventurous play; school; qualitative synthesis
Online: 6 July 2021 (11:27:45 CEST)
Adventurous play, defined as exciting, thrilling play where children are able to take age-appropriate risks has been associated with a wide range of positive outcomes. Despite this, it remains unclear what factors might aid or hinder schools in offering adventurous play opportu-nities. The purpose of this systematic review is to synthesise findings from qualitative studies on the perceived barriers and facilitators of adventurous play in schools. A total of nine studies were included in the final synthesis. The review used two synthesis strategies: a meta-aggregative syn-thesis and narrative synthesis. Findings were similar across the two syntheses, highlighting that key barriers and facilitators were: adults’ perceptions of children; adults’ attitudes and beliefs about adventurous play and concerns pertaining to health; and, safety and concerns about legis-lation. Based on the findings of the review, recommendations for policy and practice as provided to support adventurous play in schools.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0741.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: dancing; dual-task; older adults; qualitative study; Zumba; cognition
Online: 31 May 2021 (11:10:45 CEST)
Despite the popularity of Zumba in several countries, research is scarce about its impact on older adults. Meanwhile, the integration of cognitive tasks with physical exercises, known as dual-tasking, is an evolving strategy to facilitate activities for older people. This study investigated the perceptions of older adults regarding Zumba and the potential of implementing it in a dual-task program. We conducted a qualitative-descriptive research involving 44 Filipino older adults from August to November 2020. Content analysis was employed to analyze the data. Four themes were identified: moving towards match or mismatch; balancing benefits with burdens; dual-tasking as innovative yet potentially challenging; and overcoming barriers with enablers. While Zumba is an inclusive and beneficial activity, individual and contextual limitations could hinder its suitability for older people. Dual-tasking in Zumba was also recognized as an innovative approach, although challenges should be addressed to promote its utility. Several strategies could support the design of these programs in communities. This is the first study to explore older adults’ perceptions towards Zumba and its potential utilization as a dual-tasking program. Findings could guide the implementation of appropriate Zumba and dual-tasking activities that seek to integrate cognitive and physical training for older adults.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0105.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Antimicrobial stewardship; Antimicrobial Resistance; Community pharmacist; Qualitative research; Jordan
Online: 2 March 2021 (16:05:40 CET)
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization issued a practical approach and Global Action Plan to control the threatening emerging antibacterial resistance. One of the main basis of this plan is the Antimicrobial Stewardship Program (ASPs). This study aimed to evaluate community pharmacists’ awareness and perception towards antimicrobial resistance and ASPs in Jordan. Thus, a qualitative study was conducted through in-depth interviews with twenty community pharmacists. Convienience sampling was used in the study. Qualitative analysis of the data yielded four themes and eleven sub-themes. All the respondents showed good understanding about the causes of antimicrobial resistance. The most important causes reported by them was the non-restricted prescription of antimicrobials. Most of the pharmacists believed that they are competent to provide ASPs, however, they believed that there are several barriers against the implementation of ASPs in community pharmacies in Jordan. Barriers demonstrated by the pharmacists, including organizational obstacles, resources obstacles, and personal obstacles. As a conclusion, this study revealed several barriers against the implementation of ASPs in community pharmacies in Jordan. Incorporating ASPs in the community pharmacy settings requires proper pharmacist training, several academic disciplines team efforts, and good pharmacy practice of antimicrobial guidelines.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202102.0144.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: sexual education; affective education; health education; school; qualitative research.
Online: 4 February 2021 (15:30:56 CET)
Sexual education is a part of the teaching-learning process that addresses cognitive, psychological, physical and social aspects of sexuality. The purpose of sexual education is to provide people with knowledge, abilities, attitudes and values that will help them to have good sexual health, well-being and dignity. The objective of this study was to explore the experiences and opinions of primary school teachers regarding Sexual Education in school. A descriptive qualitative study was designed based on content analysis. Twelve open-ended interviews with primary school teachers were carried out, followed by inductive data analysis using ATLAS.ti software. Two key themes emerged from the analysis: ‘In search of a comprehensive approach to Sexual Education’ and ‘Barriers to Sexual Education in schools: From the lack of training to fear of the families’. We conclude that despite the efforts to implement a comprehensive approach to Sexual Education that recognises sexuality as a right, primary school teachers face difficulties in delivering Sexual Education in schools due to a lack of training and the fear that parents will reject their children being spoken to about sexuality.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0651.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Ageing; Qualitative Research; Primary Health Care; Loneliness; Social Capital.
Online: 25 December 2020 (10:38:50 CET)
Loneliness is a frequent negative feeling among older people. A programme aimed at alleviating loneliness among older people by promoting social capital, i.e. social support and participation, was conducted in primary health care centres in Spain. We aimed to explore participants’ experiences of loneliness and social participation before the programme, perceived programme effects and contextual influences. A descriptive-interpretative qualitative design was used. 41 persons were included comprising older people, health and social care professionals, and volunteers. Data were collected through three focus groups, 36 semi-structured interviews and participant-observation of the intervention. A thematic content analysis was applied. Older persons with diverse profiles of loneliness and participation decreased their loneliness, increased their knowledge and participation in local community assets, and developed companionship, a sense of belonging, peer support and friendship. Their mental wellbeing increased and participants could deal better with health or family problems. An empowerment process was observed. However, loneliness persisted among some widowed participants and health and social vulnerabilities hampered some impacts. Conflicts and exclusion were occasional unintended effects. The promotion of social capital in ageing to alleviate loneliness involves complex processes interrelated with health and socio-economic factors. Future programmes should be adapted to local contexts and participants’ characteristics.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201810.0447.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Geography Keywords: socio-environmental vulnerability; Barcelona; spatial analysis; qualitative methodology; GIS
Online: 19 October 2018 (11:33:48 CEST)
The city of Barcelona, like other cities in the world, suffers strong internal socio-economic inequalities. Numerous works have sought to detect, quantify, characterize and / or map existing intra-urban differences, almost always based on quantitative methodologies. With this contribution, we intend to illuminate the complementary role that qualitative methodologies can play in studies on urban socio-environmental vulnerability. We consider aspects that are not quantifiable but that may be inherent to many such vulnerable spaces, both in the constructed environment and in the social ambit. These questions are considered through selected neighborhoods of Barcelona which have been shown (in prior works, mainly studies of quantitative manufacturing) to possess elements of vulnerability including a high presence of immigrants from less-developed countries, low per capita income, aging populations, or low educational levels. The results reveal the multidimensionality of vulnerability in the neighborhoods analyzed, as well as the essential complementarity among methodologies that detect and support possible public actions aimed at reducing or eliminating intra-urban inequalities.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201805.0304.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Pediatrics Keywords: parents; children; asthma; qualitative research; psychological distress; psychological adjustment
Online: 22 May 2018 (12:21:47 CEST)
Many parents have difficulty managing childhood asthma. In Hong Kong (HK), while medication is the primary form of treatment, traditional Chinese medicine is another favored option. In addition, HK follows a dual-track healthcare system, which may pose unique experiences for Chinese parents in childhood asthma management. This qualitative descriptive study aimed to explore the experiences of HK Chinese parents in caring for their children with asthma. Methods: Fourteen HK Chinese mothers of children (aged 3-10) suffering from asthma were purposively sampled to participate in individual, semi-structured interviews. A realist approach following conventional content analysis was used to interpret the interviews. Results: The mothers expressed feelings of uncertainty, fear of asthma crises, and searching for ways to cope. These feelings triggered various strategies to control their child’s asthma. As long as the child’s asthma symptoms recurred, the mothers’ distress continued. Their distress was sometimes exacerbated by self-doubt and worries about whether they would receive adequate support from their family and healthcare professionals. Conclusion: Helping parents to understand their limits may help them be more open to varied aspects of their caregiving experiences, and thus to cope better. Psychological interventions together traditional educational training may help to alleviate parents’ psychological difficulties.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0334.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: cervical cancer screening; barriers; recommendations; slum; low-resource settings; qualitative
Online: 22 September 2022 (07:31:38 CEST)
Background: Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women globally despite being a largely treatable and preventable malignancy. Developing countries account for over 80% of all new cases of cervical cancer. Women residing in low-resource settings such as those residing in slums have a higher risk of cervical cancer, and lower uptake of cervical cancer screening. Diverse barriers influence the uptake of cervical cancer screening among women in low-resource settings. Objectives: This qualitative study was carried out prior to a cervical cancer screening program and explored women’s knowledge about cervical cancer, and their perceived barriers and recommendations for the program.Method: Four focus group discussions (FGD) were conducted among 35 women between the ages of 21 – 65 years residing in two urban slums in Lagos, Nigeria. Each FGD was limited to 8-10 participants of women of similar ages. Voice recordings were transcribed verbatim and analysis was done using thematic analysis.Results: Most of the women were not aware of cervical cancer and none knew the symptoms or risk factors of cervical cancer. The participants felt that the cervical cancer screening program would be well accepted in the community, however, they expressed concerns about the cost of the screening test and the sex of the person performing the test. The recommendations proffered for a successful cervical cancer screening program include; reducing the cost of the test or providing the test free of charge, having people that speak the local language as part of the team, using female health care providers, using a private location within the community or nearby PHC, and publicizing the program with the use of SMS, phone calls, town crier, and health talks. It was recommended that organizing health education sessions would help improve women’s poorly perceived susceptibility to cervical cancer.Conclusion: Interventions to increase uptake of cervical cancer screening among women in low resource settings need to improve knowledge and understanding of cervical cancer and address the barriers to cervical cancer screening such as cost, distance, and as much as possible, sex of the healthcare provider should be considered.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202206.0332.v1
Subject: Physical Sciences, General & Theoretical Physics Keywords: Innovation in teaching; Electromagnetic induction; High school students; Qualitative methods
Online: 24 June 2022 (07:43:23 CEST)
We present here a five hours experimentation of a didactical path about the electromagnetic induction addressed to students of the last year of an Italian scientific high school and oriented to better understand the physical origin of the induced electromotive force. The expression of the induced electromotive force as the sum of the term linked to the time variation of the magnetic field and of the motional one has been obtained in a detailed way, still suitable for presentation at high school. Many examples have been proposed to the students in order to clarify the conceptual physical knots. The students’ responses to a 6-questions multiple choice questionnaire have been analyzed. It emerged that our approach is concretely feasible although we find the well-known difficulties in calculating flux and circulation of a vector field. Furthermore, it emerged that an integral approach to the problem masks the understanding of the nature of the forces acting locally on the charges. Hence our proposal of a “redefinition” of the induced electric field in terms of the magnetic vector potential is also presented.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0130.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: Kenya; COVID-19; community representatives; self-testing; diagnostics; qualitative research
Online: 10 May 2022 (09:38:58 CEST)
Rapid SARS-CoV-2 self-tests have the potential to expand access to COVID-19 testing and improve community-level case detection, particularly in resource-constrained countries such as Kenya. However, prior to their introduction, their acceptability must be assessed. This qualitative study explored key decision-takers’ values towards SARS-CoV-2 self-testing in Kenya. Healthcare workers, representatives of civil society, and potential implementors from Mombasa and Taita-Taveta were selected as decision-takers. Semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions were used to collect data on their values towards self-testing. A thematic analysis approach was applied. Most informants considered that the Kenyan public is equipped to accept and use self-testing safely as an approach to help to reduce workload at public healthcare facilities, and know one’s COVID-19 status in a private manner. The informants emphasized the need to provide counselling to end-users, to support those needing to self-isolate, and to engage different civil society stakeholders in information provision on self-testing. Fear of stigma and of forced isolation were noted as potential deterrents to self-testing uptake for some individuals. In conclusion, there is high acceptability of self-testing in Kenya among decision-takers. However, enhanced education, counselling, and addressing deterrents to testing would be helpful to ensure effective use of SARS-CoV-2 self-testing in Kenya.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202202.0095.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Other Keywords: energy transition; qualitative research; housing in Bulgaria; collective decision-making
Online: 7 February 2022 (15:57:42 CET)
Stemming from the Bulgarian case study developed within a European research project (ECHOES, Horizon 2020), the paper discusses the links between: (a) the urgent need to operationalize EU energy transition policy in the housing domain; (b) the complexity of factors influencing the policy implementation in different contexts – geographical, economic, and technical but also social and cultural; and (c) the important role of the urban level in policy implementation. Under the specific spatial planning context of Bulgaria, the local collective energy-related decision-making in the housing field evolves through the interaction – formal (at the municipal level of governance) and informal (individuals, households and homeowners’ associations taking decisions on self-organization and collective action). The authors claim that interdisciplinary context-sensitive research would contribute to a better understanding for the ongoing energy-related decision-making processes at the local level and would enable the development and implementation of effective and efficient policy instruments in support of energy transition in the housing sector in Europe.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202201.0416.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Other Keywords: Goal setting; goal adjustment; lockdown; qualitative survey; reflexive thematic analysis
Online: 27 January 2022 (11:27:26 CET)
Since the end of 2019 and throughout 2020 the world has been devastated by the SARS COVID-19 pandemic. The sport world suddenly had to deal with a massive reorganization of events with important implications on the physical and psychological preparation of athletes and coaches. The purpose of this study was to explore how these changes impacted coaches’ and athletes’ goal setting strategies and their experience of goal adjustment. As part of a wider mixed-method project involving 2162 coaches and 1354 athletes, an online qualitative survey was used, and data collected were analyzed using reflexive thematic analysis. Findings highlighted three overarching themes, in response to goal adjustment: “Moving on toward new goals”, “Letting go of goals”, and “Trying to hold on”, with several themes and sub-themes identifying different nuances of athletes’ and coaches’ experience. The implications of such findings for the mental preparation of high-level athletes are discussed in two ways. Firstly, in light of existing literature on goal setting from an applied perspective; secondly, in the broader perspective of the sport culture and the application of our themes to other challenging moments that sport professionals might encounter.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202112.0016.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: Nutrition program; vendor system; qualitative study; obesity; non-communicable diseases
Online: 1 December 2021 (13:10:10 CET)
Globally, noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) were responsible for 41 million deaths in 2016, with the majority of these occurring in low and middle-income countries. These diseases were on the rise as a result of unhealthy, low-quality, and unbalanced diets, which resulted in overweight and obesity. The National School Nutrition Programme (NSNP) was created to regulate the foods sold to schoolchildren. To ascertain school management teams' perspectives on the relationship between the NSNP and the development of lifestyle diseases. A phenomenological qualitative study using Focus Group Discussions among 16 purposively selected members of the School Management Teams were conducted in Mt Frere, Eastern Cape in 2016. The narrative data was analyzed using Tesch's eight-phase thematic analysis approach. The data analysis revealed two themes (NSNP and the vendor system) and six sub-themes. The NSNP was viewed as making a significant contribution to children's food security, thereby improving academic output. However, reengineering of the NSNP was need through improved budgeting and inclusion of breakfast in the menu to control NCDs risk factors. The current implementation of the vendor system did not support reduction of NCDs risk factors. Improved implementation of the guide to vendor system is needed.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201905.0280.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: information; end of life; humanisation; health care system; qualitative research
Online: 23 May 2019 (06:09:36 CEST)
Health information and communication are key elements that allow patients and family members to make decisions about end-of-life process and guarantee a death with dignity. Objective: To understand carers’ experiences regarding health information and communication during the illness and death of family members. Methods: This qualitative study was conducted in Andalusia based on the paradigm of hermeneutic phenomenology. Participants were carers who had accompanied a family member at the end of life for over 2 months and less than 2 years. Five nominal groups and 5 discussion groups were established, and 41 in-depth interviews with 123 participants were conducted. Atlas.ti 7.0 software was used to analyse the discourses. Results: Four dimensions of the dying process emerged: differences in carers’ perceptions of information and communication, a conspiracy of silence, consequences of the absence or presence of information, and the need for a culture change. Conclusions: Poor management of health information and communication at the end of life suffering and discomfort patients and their families. The culture of denying and avoiding death is still present today. A change in education about death would better enable health professionals to care for patients at the end of life.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0099.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: diabetes; survey; sub-Saharan Africa; coronavirus; vaccine; hesitancy; refusal; qualitative; lockdown
Online: 15 June 2022 (05:56:25 CEST)
Abstract: Diabetes mellitus (DM) is associated with severe COVID-19 infection and complications. This study assessed COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and hesitancy in diabetes and explored reasons for nonvaccinating. This was a web-based cross-sectional survey using a mixed-method approach conducted between March-May 2021 corresponding to most SSA countries' early vaccine rollout period. Participants were those aged ≥18 years with self-reported DM in 11 Sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries. Responses to comments on reasons for vaccine hesitancy and facilitators for vaccine uptake were analyzed. Of the 73 participants with DM, 65.8% were males older than 35 years (86.3%), had post-secondary education (90%), and a significant proportion was from South Africa (39.7%), Nigeria (28.8%) and Ghana (13.7%). 64.4% had COVID-19 symptoms, 46.6% were tested for COVID-19, of which 19.2% tested positive. Few participants (6.8%) had taken the COVID-19 vaccination, 65.8% were willing to take the vaccine, while 26.0% either refused or hesitated to take the vaccine. The main reasons identified for not taking the vaccine were: advice from religious leaders, concerns about the vaccine safety, its effects, and efficacy, mistrust of the pharmaceutical companies, the conspiracy theories around the vaccines, the process of production, and the personal belief of the participants. However, participants stated they would take the vaccine if given more education about it, receive positive feedback from those vaccinated, are rewarded for taking the vaccine or if vaccination becomes a condition for travel and employment. The findings of this study showed that uptake of the COVID-19 vaccine was very low in this high-risk group. It is imperative that efforts to increase the uptake of vaccines, such as the provision of education and relevant information, are made.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201907.0037.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: clinical psychology; cultural psychology; ethic and professionalism; holistic medicine; qualitative methods
Online: 2 July 2019 (09:39:40 CEST)
This study aimed to explore how Indonesian clinical psychologists (CPs) address aspects of spirituality and religion (SR), particularly their attitudes towards and experience of it, on the mental health context. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 43 CPs in public health centres in Yogyakarta Province, Indonesia. Data were anyalsed using deductive thematic analysis and they generated ten sub-themes which were merged into three central themes. The first theme was experiences related to SR, particularly in Indonesian sociocultural context. The second theme concentrated on participants’ clinical experience related to SR integration into clinical practice. The last theme highlighted the effort made by participants to create holistic mental health services. The originality of this study was represented by the interview quote in the title, “Doing my profession is also part of worship”. It was found that SR is part of culture and belief among Indonesian people, including CPs and mental health treatment clients. In summary, participants genuinely acknowledged that they were not able to completely detach SR from their professional practice. However, participants also pointed out that they were different with spiritual-religious healers (SRHs) and favourably welcomed future collaboration with credible SRHs. This positive attitude embodied a holistic care approach that recognises the diverse biopsycho-social-spiritual needs of clients. Therefore, professional organisations and psychology faculties should establish regulations and education of SR in psychology curricula and conventional psychotherapy to achieve this holistic mental health services in Indonesia.
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: patient care; pharmacists; pharmacy curriculum; pharmacy education; public health; qualitative method
Online: 2 November 2018 (10:34:46 CET)
1) Public health remains a tiny portion of the undergraduate pharmacy curriculum and the material is integrated into other modules. The objective of this study is to describe the UK undergraduate pharmacy curriculum, including its public health content; 2) Methods: A qualitative method (content analysis of websites) was used to describe the UK undergraduate pharmacy curriculum and teaching and learning policy. This involved selecting relevant concepts and then quantifying their presence and the relationships between them. The NVivo software was used to carry out ‘group queries’ and visualisation of results; 3) Results: Public health remains an optional module in the curricula of many UK schools of pharmacy. Several public health-related topics are often integrated into other modules, but UK undergraduate pharmacy curricula are still dominated by traditional pharmacy modules; and 4) Conclusions: Most of the curricula analysed were dominated by traditional pharmacy modules designed to enhance students' knowledge and skills. The skill set of UK pharmacy students with respect to macro-level public health activities needs to be improved in order to enhance pharmacists’ contribution to public health.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201708.0032.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: qualitative research; infant feeding; complementary feeding; breast feeding; low income country
Online: 8 August 2017 (12:00:26 CEST)
Continued high rates of both under- and over-nutrition in low- and low-middle-income countries highlight the importance of understanding dietary practices such as early and exclusive breastfeeding, and dietary patterns such as timely, appropriate complementary feeding—these behaviors that are rooted in complex cultural ecologies. A systematic review and synthesis of available qualitative research related to infant and young child dietary patterns and practices from the perspective of parents and families in low income settings is presented, with a focus on barriers and facilitators to achieving international recommendations. Data from both published and grey literature from 2006-2016 was included in the review. Quality assessment consisted of two phases (CASP guidelines and assessment using GRADE-CERQual), followed by synthesis of the studies identified, and subsequent thematic analysis and interpretation. The findings indicated several categories of both barriers and facilitators, spanning individual and system level factors. The review informs efforts aimed at improving child health and nutrition, and represents the first such comprehensive review of the qualitative literature, uniquely suited to understanding complex behaviors leading to infant and young child dietary patterns.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202202.0332.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: school meals; nutrition policies; food preferences; healthy meals; children; norway; qualitative methods
Online: 25 February 2022 (09:53:50 CET)
School meals can have a key function in promoting children’s health. However, simply providing a free school meal is not a guarantee that pupils will actually eat the food. The purpose of this study was to explore factors influencing pupils’ participation in free school meal schemes in Oslo The study has a qualitative research design, inspired by grounded theory. Data were collected through interviews with pupils, teachers and parents, and participant observations in two schools participating in a pilot project funded by Oslo Municipality. Line-by-line coding, memo writing and a constant comparative technique were used to analyse the data. One primary school and one lower-secondary school in different districts in Oslo that were implementing two different free school meal models. 39 pupils (5th–10th grade), 15 parents and 12 school employees were included. Four main factors related to pupils’ participation to free school meals emerged from the analysis: the popularity of the food served, the attraction to the nearby shopping centre, social aspects and predictability. To promote pupils’ participation in free school meal schemes, schools need to solve the challenges of balancing between healthy food and popular but often unhealthy food. Children and parents involvement, regularity of the meals provision, a good flow of information and the creation of a friendly eating environment are recommended
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0022.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Atmospheric Science Keywords: Wildfire; Private Forest; Reforestation; Southeast Germany; Qualitative Study; Pine Monoculture; Mixed Forest
Online: 4 May 2021 (14:13:31 CEST)
Due to climate change, droughts have been occurring more frequently in Germany in recent years. More frequent and prolonged drought affects the health of trees and increases the risk of forest fires. A large-scale forest fire broke out near Treuenbrietzen, Brandenburg, in the summer of 2018 in pine monospecific forests. In addition to evaluating the damage caused, future reforestation is discussed, which is related mainly to the expectations of the forest owners. A telephone survey of seven affected forest owners was conducted using a semi-structured guided interview. The results from our interview demonstrated the support of private forest owners for mixed forests over monospecific pine forests. Most forest owners do not prioritize economic benefit with the forest land as forestry was not the primary source of income. Instead, the ownership of the forest tends to be linked to idealistic, cultural, and family values. The motives for reforestation vary but are often externally influenced. Different goals of forest owners lead to the challenge of finding consensus among them. We conclude that forestry advice by the federal and state governments is essential, especially on how climate change can affect local forests, to sensitize private forest owners to this problem.
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: Sugars; Sweeteners; Sweet Taste; Sweetness; Attitudes; Focus Groups; Qualitative Research; Thematic Analysis
Online: 25 March 2021 (17:14:44 CET)
Worldwide initiatives currently aim to reduce free sugar intakes, but success will depend on consumer attitudes towards sugar and the alternatives. This work aimed to explore attitudes towards sugar, sweeteners and sweet-tasting foods in the general public of the UK, including attitudes towards personal consumption and related policies. Focus groups and interviews were conducted with 34 adults (7 males, ages: 18-65 years). Thematic analysis identified six themes: ‘Value’ (e.g. pleasure, emotions), ‘Angle’ (e.g. disinterest), ‘Personal Relevance’ (to be concerned and/or change one’s own behaviour), ‘Personal Responsibility’ (one has an active relationship with these food items), ‘Understanding’ (the acquisition, comprehension and application of information surrounding these food items) and ‘It’s Not Up to Me’ (a passive approach towards these food items, because intake is subjected to other factors). Both positive and negative attitudes towards sugar, sweeteners and sweet-tasting foods were expressed in all themes, largely dependent on the individual. Potential strategies for reducing free sugar intakes were also reported, but differences in likely value were suggested by different individuals. Future work should assess associations between attitudes and intakes. For greatest population benefit, evidence of the dominant attitudes in those in greatest need of reduced free sugar intakes would be of value.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0197.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nutrition Keywords: Maternal diet; Dietary behaviour change intervention; Nutrition education; Balanced plate; Qualitative methods
Online: 9 July 2020 (16:15:13 CEST)
Social, cultural, environmental and economic factors closely regulate the selection, allocation and consumption of maternal diets. We developed a nutrition behaviour change intervention to promote a balanced diet in pregnancy through practical demonstration in rural Bangladesh and tested the impact with a cluster randomised controlled trial. This paper presents the findings of the process evaluation and describes the strategies that worked for intervention compliance. We conducted in-depth interviews with pregnant women, women who birthed recently, and their husbands; focus groups with mothers and mothers-in-law; key-informant interviews with community health workers, and observation of home visits. We identified six key areas within the intervention strategy that played a crucial role in achieving the desired adherence. These included practical demonstration of portion sizes; addressing local food perceptions; demystifying animal-source foods; engaging husbands and mothers-in-law; leveraging women’s social networks; and harnessing community health workers’ social role. Practical demonstration, opportunity to participate and convenience of making of the plate with the food available in their kitchen or neighbours’ kitchen were the most commonly mentioned reasons for acceptance of the intervention by the women and their families. The balanced plate intervention helped women through practical demonstration to learn about a balanced meal by highlighting appropriate portion sizes and food diversity. The women needed active involvement of community health workers in mobilising social support to create an enabling environment essential to bring changes in dietary behaviours. Programs to promote a nutritious maternal diet should focus on encouraging the use of healthy foods through practical demonstration of portion sizes and engagement of the women and family instead of replicating the traditional information-based counselling.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201911.0126.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Business And Administrative Sciences Keywords: corporate social responsibility (CSR); sustainability; complementarity; fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA)
Online: 12 November 2019 (10:00:45 CET)
We examined how combinations of corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities lead to high performance in Korean companies. This study addressed two related questions to expand our limited knowledge in this area. The first was what combinations of CSR activities achieve high performance. The second was to identify how CSR activities form an interdependent system, depending on different corporate situations. Korean Economic Justice Institute index data, from 2012 to 2018, were used with fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis, and the results revealed several effective CSR activity factor combinations under given strategies and management environments. Companies with high performance exhibit complementarity between social contribution, environmental management, fairness, and employee satisfaction. By contrast, companies with low corporate performance show no complementarity between relatively unrelated activity factors. For companies whose CSR activities lead to low financial performance, most of the causal pathways focused only on activities at the primary stakeholder level, with weak diversity of CSR activities’ combinations at the primary and secondary stakeholder levels. These results indicate not only the appropriateness of CSR activity factor combinations for companies’ strategy and management environment contexts, but also their effectiveness, and are expected to provide companies with significant implications for CSR activities.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201701.0013.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: Rheumatoid Arthritis; thematic analysis; Outcomes assessment; Qualitative Research; Patient reported outcome measures
Online: 3 January 2017 (11:32:52 CET)
Background. The Stanford Health Assessment Questionnaire-Disability Index (HAQ) is widely used to measure functional ability in persons with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). The instrument was developed with limited involvement from persons with RA, and their perception of the instrument has not been studied in depth. The aim of this study was to explore how persons with RA experience the use of the HAQ in care. Methods. Forty persons with RA were purposefully recruited to participate in semi-structured interviews. The interviews were then analyzed qualitatively using thematic analysis. Results. The participants questioned the relevance of the HAQ but nevertheless experienced that the instrument had a profound effect on their understanding of health and how care is delivered. The analysis resulted in three themes: Problems with individual items, meaning of the summative score, and effects on care and health perceptions. Conclusions. To make the HAQ relevant to persons with RA, it needs to be revised or to include an option to select items most meaningful to the respondent. To ensure relevance, the HAQ update should preferably be co-created by researchers, clinicians and persons with RA.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202111.0569.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences Keywords: ecosystem dynamics; discrete-event model; qualitative modelling; boolean model; state-and-transition model
Online: 30 November 2021 (12:39:11 CET)
Sub-Saharan social-ecological systems are undergoing changes in environmental conditions, including modifications in rainfall pattern and biodiversity loss. Consequences of such changes depend on complex causal chains which call for integrated management strategies whose efficiency could benefit from ecosystem dynamic modelling. However, ecosystem models often require lots of quantitative information for estimating parameters, which is often unavailable. Alternatively, qualitative modelling frameworks have proved useful for explaining ecosystem response to perturbations, while requiring fewer information and providing more general predictions. However, current qualitative methods have some shortcomings which may limit their utility for specific issues. In this paper, we propose the Ecological Discrete-Event Network (EDEN), an innovative qualitative dynamic modelling framework based on "if-then" rules which generates many alternative event sequences (trajectories). Based on expert knowledge, observations and literature, we use this framework to assess the effect of permanent changes in surface water and herbivores diversity on vegetation and socio-economic transitions in an East African savanna. Results show that water availability drives changes in vegetation and socio-economic transitions, while herbivore functional groups had highly contrasted effects depending on the group. This first use of EDEN in a savanna context is promising for bridging expert knowledge and ecosystem modelling.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0115.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Developmental Psychology Keywords: qualitative analysis; deconversion; case study; Faith Development Interview; subjective religiosity; narrative identity; content analysis
Online: 9 May 2022 (10:02:48 CEST)
This article addresses the question how the religious narrative identity and subjective religiosity change over the course of 15 years. The cases portrayed are deconverts who have changed their religious affiliations multiple times. It will be carved out what led to their deconversion and what remains as a core of their faith after they have turned away from organized religion for good. Interviews have been conducted at three time points and are analyzed using content analysis. It will become clear that the needs and expectations of the two individuals differ highly, as well as the reasons for turning away from a religious community; yet what is a common core in this joint faithful journey is their need to live their religiosity, now in a private setting.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202109.0481.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Studies Keywords: academia; affective dimension; doctoral education; mock defense; qualitative analysis; quantitative analysis; viva; viva voce
Online: 29 September 2021 (09:10:34 CEST)
The doctoral defense is an important step towards obtaining the doctoral degree. As such, preparing for the event is necessary. Anecdotal evidence highlights that there is a wide variety of ways in which doctoral candidates prepare for the defense. In this work, I want to explore if there is a relation between the way in which a doctoral candidate prepares for the defense and two important aspects of the defense: the outcome of the defense, and the student perception during and after the defense. For this purpose, I first reviewed the literature on the topic of the preparation for the doctoral defense. Then, I carried out an international survey on the doctoral defense and analyzed the data of the 204 completed surveys with respect to the preparation for the defense using quantitative and qualitative methods. The methods I used included the statistical tests of the correlation between on one hand the preparation and on the other hand the defense outcome and student perception. I used inductive thematic analysis of the open-ended survey questions to gain deeper insight in the way candidates prepared for their defense. I found that candidates most often prepare by making their presentation, reading their thesis, and practicing. The most effective measure is the mock defense, followed by a preparatory course. Reading blogs, books, and chapters is a less effective preparation measure. The conclusion of this work is that doctoral candidates need to understand the format of their defense in order to be able to prepare properly, and that universities should explore either individual pathways to the defense or pilots using a mock defense and/or preparatory course to give their doctoral candidates the necessary tools to prepare for their doctoral defense.
CASE REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202106.0496.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: Intuitive Meditation; Consciousness; Inner Balance technology 3; Coherence; Feeling; Thinking; HeartMath; Wellbeing; Self; Qualitative
Online: 21 June 2021 (09:53:57 CEST)
An introductory course of Arka Dhyana, also known as Intuitive Meditation (IM), consisting of five sessions, was offered to an international audience via Zoom technology. Participants were shown how to connect to their deeper self, essence or soul by bringing their I-ego-awareness from the thinking mind, often associated with the frontal part of the brain, to 19 energetic stations in the body including the heart centre. In this limited study, evaluation was both process and outcome orientated and included HeartMath (HM) Inner Balance or emWave2 electronic technology to measure mean coherence and achievement before and after each session. A highly significant increase in both coherence and achievement in six participants was found, which was also reflected in a reported increase in wellbeing related to feelings in qualitative statements indicating changes in levels of consciousness and individual transformative experiences as predicted by the Theory of the Six Main Levels of Consciousness.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0195.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Geography Keywords: urban governance; public participation; public comments; web-crawling data; qualitative content analysis; urban China
Online: 9 September 2020 (03:37:38 CEST)
Public participation is crucial in the process of urban governance in smart-city initiatives to enable urban planners and policy makers to take account of the real public needs. Our study aims to develop an analytical framework using citizen-centred qualitative data to analyse urban problems and identify the areas most needed for urban governance. Taking a Chinese megacity as the study area, we first utilise a web-crawling tool to retrieve public comments from an online comment board and employ the Baidu Application Programming Interfaces and a qualitative content analysis for data reclassification. We then analyse the urban problems reflected by negative comments in terms of their statistical and spatial distribution, and the associative factors to explain their formation. Our findings show that urban problems are dominantly related to construction and housing, and most frequently appear in industry-oriented areas and newly-developed economic development zones on the urban fringe, where the reconciling of government-centered governance and private governance by real estate developers and property management companies are most needed. Areas with higher land price and a higher proportion of aged population tend to have less urban problems, while various types of civil facilities affect the prevalence of urban problems differently.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201909.0086.v1
Subject: Physical Sciences, Mathematical Physics Keywords: iterated function; asymptotic analysis; discretization; stability theory; metric space; qualitative theory of differential equations
Online: 8 September 2019 (16:09:07 CEST)
By defining a constant probabilistic orbit of and iterated functions, the stability dynamics of these functions in possible interactions through connectivity provides the formation of a dynamic fixed point as a metric space between both iterated functions. The presence of a dynamic fixed point identifies qualitatively phases of iteration time lengths and interaction orbits of the event. Qualitative results show that the greater the average distance from one of the functions to the fixed point of the other (all possible solutions), the higher the iteration expression on time (false asymptotic effect) of one of the functions and in the opposite hand, the lower the average distance, the higher orbit’s interactions proximity between iterated functions (stability). This feature reveals asymptotic (well-defined) behavior between functions f and g within a well-defined Lyapunov stability.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201906.0260.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: complementary and alternative medicine; integrative medicine; knowledge; training and education; psychology; mental health; qualitative
Online: 26 June 2019 (05:31:14 CEST)
Background and objectives: The inadequate knowledge of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) among health professionals may put their clients in risky situation because they then would find information about CAM from unreliable sources. Clinical psychologists (CPs), as health professionals, have also the opportunity to provide psychoeducation on the latest CAM scientific research to their clients. The current study aimed to explore knowledge and educational needs of CAM among CPs in Indonesia because previous studies on exploring CAM knowledge and educational needs of CAM were primarily conducted in Western countries. Materials and Methods: Data were collected through semi-structured face-to-face interviews with 43 CPs in public health centers (PHCs) in Indonesia. Most interviews were held at the PHCs where participants worked and interviews lasted for 55 minutes, on average. The interview recordings were transcribed and were analyzed using deductive thematic analysis. Results: Five main themes emerged within participants’ responses regarding CAM knowledge and educational needs. First (CAM understanding), participants’ responses ranged from those with little or no prior knowledge of CAM treatments and uses, to those with much greater familiarity. Second (source of knowledge), participants’ access ranged widely in terms of references, from popular to scientific literature. Third (why is it important?), participants identified CAM essentially as part of Indonesian culture and it was therefore crucial to have this cultural knowledge. Fourth (the challenges and what is needed?), the challenges for improving participants’ knowledge came from personal and institutional levels. Fifth (what and how to learn?), participants advised that only CAM treatments that fit in brief psychotherapy sessions should be introduced in professional training. Conclusions: This qualitative study discovered that CAM was neither well-known nor understood widely. Participants advised that professional associations and health institutions should work together in enhancing knowledge of CAM and incorporating CAM education into psychology education.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0410.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Geography Keywords: social representations; natural hazard risk; Alpine hazards; risk communication; risk management; qualitative risk research;
Online: 16 November 2018 (13:35:01 CET)
The term “risk” is connoted with divergent meanings in natural hazard risk research and the practice of risk management. Whilst the technical definition is accurately defined, in practice, the term “risk” is often synonymously used with “danger”. Considering this divergence as a deficiency, risk communication often aims to correct laypersons’ understanding. We suggest in reference to Breakwell (2001) to treat the variety of meanings as a resource for risk communication strategies instead. However, there is no investigation so far, of what laypersons’ meanings of risk actually comprise. To address this gap, we examine the meanings of risk applying a social representations approach (Moscovici, 2001) in a qualitative case study design. Results of the study among inhabitants of Swiss mountain villages show that differences in meanings were found according to hazard experience and community size. We found commonly shared core representations, and single peripheral ones. We conclude with suggestions on how to make usage of the knowledge on SR in risk communication.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201610.0065.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: nicotine products; tobacco harm reduction; people living with mental illness; qualitative research; consumer preferences
Online: 17 October 2016 (10:49:07 CEST)
Aims and Background: People living with mental disorders experience a disproportionately higher burden of tobacco-related disease than the general population. Long-term substitution with less harmful nicotine products could reduce the tobacco-related harm among this population. This study investigated the views and preferences of people with mental health disorders about different nicotine products and their use as long-term substitutes for cigarettes. Methods: Semi-structured focus group discussion followed by a brief questionnaire. The discussion transcripts were analysed for content and themes and quantitative data summarised with descriptive statistics. Results: Twenty-nine participants took part in four focus groups. Vaping devices were the most acceptable nicotine products discussed, however preferences for nicotine products were idiosyncratic and varied along aesthetic, pragmatic, sensory and symbolic dimensions. The concept of tobacco harm reduction was unfamiliar to participants, however they generally agreed with the logic of replacing cigarettes with less harmful nicotine products. Barriers to activating tobacco harm reduction included the symbolism of smoking and quitting; the importance placed on health; the consumer appeal of alternatives; and cost implications. Discussion and Conclusion: Engaging this population in tobacco harm reduction options will require communication that challenges black and white thinking (a conceptual framework in which smoking cigarettes or quitting all nicotine are the only legitimate options) as in practice this serves to support the continuance of smoking. Consumers should be encouraged to trial a range of nicotine products to find the most acceptable alternative to smoking that reduces health harms. Providing incentives to switch to nicotine products could help overcome barriers to using less harmful nicotine products among mental health consumers.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201904.0094.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Other Keywords: Keywords: vegetable cultivation; health; physical health; mental health; social well-being; qualitative study; adult; Japan
Online: 8 April 2019 (12:49:04 CEST)
The present short communication aimed to determine the effects of vegetable cultivation on health. We conducted a qualitative study using responses to an open-ended question that was part of a survey on regional differences on vegetable intake. Participants in this study were residents of Gunma Prefecture, Japan, and were aged between 20–74 years. In the questionnaire, we asked: “Aside from increasing vegetable intake, how does vegetable cultivation affect your health?” We were able to categorize the answers into six subcategories related to physical health, mental health, and social well-being.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202206.0296.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: new materialism; assemblage; storyboarding; HIV; adherence; antiretroviral therapy; young people; perinatal infection; qualitative evidence synthesis; biopsychosocial
Online: 21 June 2022 (10:54:56 CEST)
Young people living with perinatal infections of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (YLPHIV) face a chronic disease, with treatment including adherence to life-long antiretroviral treatment (ART). The aim of this QES was to explore adherence to ART for YLPHIV as an assemblage within the framework of the BPS model with a new materialist perspective. We searched up to November 2021 and followed the ENTREQ and Cochrane guidelines for QES. All screening, data extraction and critical appraisal was done in duplicate. We analysed and interpreted the findings innovatively, by creating images of meaning, a storyboard, and storylines. We then reported the findings in a narrative first person story. We included 47 studies and identified 9 storylines. We found that treatment adherence has less to do with humans’ preferences, motivations, needs and dispositions, and more to do with how bodies, viruses, things, ideas, institutions, environments, social processes, and social structures assemble. This QES highlights that adherence to ART for YLPHIV is a multisensorial experience in a multi agentic world. Future research into rethinking the linear and casual inferences we are accustomed too in evidence-based health care is needed if we are to adopt multidisciplinary approaches to address pressing issues such as adherence to ART.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0350.v3
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: lyme disease; clinical decision-making; medical history taking; physician-patient relation; primary health care; qualitative research
Online: 31 May 2022 (09:14:56 CEST)
Background: Media coverage of Lyme disease (LD) has led to an increase in consultations for presumed LD in Europe. However, LD is confirmed in only 10-20% of patients, with a significant number remaining in a diagnostic dead-end. Objectives: To reach a deeper understanding of how patients themselves contribute to the diagnostic process. To describe the genesis of the LD hypothesis in care pathways. Methods: In 2019, 30 patients from a prospective cohort consulting in the infectious diseases department at University Hospital in Marseille for presumed LD were recruited for semi-structured interviews. The inclusion criteria were : suffering from subjective symptoms for 6 months, no clinical or paraclinical argument suggesting current LD. The patients’ medical trajectories were collected using a biographical approach. Results: The diagnosis of Lyme disease was primarily triggered by identification with personal testimonies found on the internet. Most of patients were leading their own diagnostic investigation. The majority of participants were convinced they had LD despite the lack of medical evidence and the scepticism of their referring GP. Conclusion: GPs should first systematically explore patients’ etiologic representations in order to improve adherence to the diagnosis especially in the management of medically unexplained symptoms. Long COVID-19 syndrome challenge offers an opportunity to promote active patient involvement in diagnosis.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0318.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Studies Keywords: Inter-rater reliability; preservice teacher performance assessment; PACT; edTPA; weighted kappa; cognitive task analysis; qualitative; quantitative
Online: 16 August 2021 (10:51:52 CEST)
The Performance Assessment for California Teachers (PACT) is a high stakes summative assessment that was designed to measure pre-service teacher readiness. We examined the inter-rater reliability (IRR) of trained PACT evaluators who rated 19 candidates. As measured by Cohen’s weighted kappa, the overall IRR estimate was .17 (poor strength of agreement). IRR estimates ranged from -.29 (worse than expected by chance) to .54 (moderate strength of agreement); all were below the standard of .70 for consensus agreement. Follow up interviews of 10 evaluators revealed possible reasons we observed low IRR, such as departures from established PACT scoring protocol, and lack of, or inconsistent, use of a scoring aid document. Evaluators reported difficulties scoring the materials that candidates submitted, particularly the use of Academic Language. Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) is suggested as a method to improve IRR in the PACT and other teacher performance assessments such as the edTPA.
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: hotel housekeepers; stress; occupational health; job demands-resources model; qualitative research; work- life balance; gender perspective.
Online: 19 November 2020 (15:11:33 CET)
Tourism is the main economic sector in the Balearic Islands (Spain) and hotel housekeepers (HHs) are a large occupational group, in which stress is becoming a major issue. This study aims at exploring in-depth factors perceived as stressors by HHs and key-informants, and their effects on work-life balance (WLB). A qualitative design with phenomenological approach was used, conducting six focus groups with 34 HHs and 10 individual interviews with key-informants. Results were analyzed adopting the job demands-resources model and a gender perspective. High demands –e.g work overload, time pressure, physical burden...-, lack of enough resources and little control –derived from role conflict, unexpected events...- were the most important factors explaining HHs’ stress. Additionally, this imbalance was perceived as leading to health problems –mainly musculoskeletal disorders-. Working schedule was mentioned as a facilitator to WLB, whereas an imbalance between job demands and resources led to work-home conflict –preventing them from enjoying leisure time-. Multiple roles at work and at home increased their stress. HHs experienced their job as invisible and unrecognised. Regarding practical implications, our recommendations for hotel organization include reducing workload and increasing resources, which would improve the job demands-resource balance, diminish negative mental and physical outcomes and improve WLB.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201707.0080.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: implementation; adoption; health interventions; community prevention; obesity prevention interventions; system dynamics; systems thinking; endogenous dynamics; qualitative modeling; case studies
Online: 27 July 2017 (17:54:29 CEST)
In this study, we present case studies to explore the dynamics of implementation and maintenance of health interventions. We analyze how specific interventions are built and eroded, how the building and erosion mechanisms are interconnected, and why we can see significantly different erosion rates across otherwise similar organizations. We use multiple comparative obesity prevention case studies to provide empirical information on the mechanisms of interest, and use qualitative systems modeling to integrate our evolving understanding into an internally consistent and transparent theory of the phenomenon. Our preliminary results identify reinforcing feedback mechanisms, including design of organizational processes, motivation of stakeholders, and communication among stakeholders, which influence implementation and maintenance of intervention components. Over time, these feedback mechanisms may drive a wedge between otherwise similar organizations, leading to distinct configurations of implementation and maintenance processes.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202204.0081.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Keywords: Social Robot; Empirical Research; Human-Robot Interaction; Human-Computer Interaction; Ethnomethodology; Robot development; HCI; HRI; Qualitative Research
Online: 8 April 2022 (12:48:04 CEST)
This study observes, interprets, and analyses the knowledge production in the research field of Human–Robot Interaction (HRI). It intends to foreground the hidden assumptions that are often taken for granted when roboticist design and conduct their research. By doing so, this study demonstrates how these assumptions influence the result of their research. Based on data collected through sociological field observation, this study argues that the current practise in HRI research is highly anthropocentric. In short, the robots are designed to be like human instead of for human. Therefore, the human–robot relationship embodies the existing power relations between human beings. These relations generate inequality, hierarchy, and dominance, which are the opposite of the common imagination of the robotised future among roboticists. For the purpose of enabling the robotised future closer to their ideal, this study suggests that HRI researchers to go beyond the conventional methodology, to allow a human–robot relationship that realises reciprocity.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202206.0371.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Studies Keywords: regenerative higher education; podcasting as qualitative inquiry; ecological university; sustaina-bility transitions; regenerative education practices; regenerative education design
Online: 28 June 2022 (03:57:41 CEST)
Abstract Universities have the potential, and the responsibility, to take on more ecological and relational approaches to facilitating learning-based change in times of interconnected socio-ecological crises. Signs for a transition towards these more regenerative approaches of higher education (RHE) that include more place-based, ecological, and relational, ways of educating can already be found in niches across Europe (see for example the proliferation of education-based living labs, field labs, challenge labs). In this paper, the results of a podcast-based inquiry into the design practices and barriers of enacting such forms of RHE are shown. This study revealed seven educational practices that occurred across the innovation niches. It is important to note these practices are enacted in different ways, or are locally nested in unique expressions, For example, while the ‘practice’ of Cultivating Personal Transformations was represented across the included cases, the way these transformations were cultivated were unique expressions of each context. These RHE-design practices are derived from twenty-six narrative-based podcasts as interviews recorded in the April through June 2021 period. The resulting podcast (The Regenerative Education Podcast) was published on all major streaming platforms from October 2021 and included 21 participants active in Dutch Universities, 1 in Sweden, 1 in Germany, 1 in France, and 3 primarily online. Each episode engages with a leading practitioner, professor, teacher, and/or activist that is trying to connect their educational practice to making the world a more equitable, sustainable, and regenerative place. The episodes ranged from 30 to 70 minutes in total length and included both English (14) and Dutch (12) interviews. These episodes were analyzed through transition mapping a method based on story analysis and transition design. The results include seven design practices such as Cultivating Personal Transformations, Nurturing Ecosystems of Support, and Tackling Relevant and Urgent Transition Challenges, as well as a preliminary design tool that educational teams can use together with students and local agents in (re)designing their own RHE to connect their educational praxis with transition challenges.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202202.0235.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Sociology Keywords: adolescence; substance use; cannabis use; ordered logistic regression; fuzzy set theory; fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis; Boolean functions.
Online: 18 February 2022 (11:49:13 CET)
The literature on substance use usually extracts conclusions from data with correlational methods. Our study shows the usefulness of complementing ordered logistic regression (OLR) and fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA) to assess factors inducing cannabis consumption in a sample of 1,935 teenagers. OLR showed a significant influence of gender (odd ratio (OR) =0.383, p<0.0001), parental monitoring (OR=0.587, p=0.0201); religiousness (OR=0.476, p=0.006); parental tolerance to substance use (OR=42.01, p<0.0001) and having close peers that consume substances (OR=5.60, p<0.0001). FsQCA has allowed fitting linkages between factors from a complementary perspective. (1) Coverage (cov) and consistency (cons) attained by solutions explaining use (cons=0.808, cov=0.357) are clearly lower than by recipes of non-use (cons=0.952, cov=0.869) (2) The interaction of gender, a tolerant family to use and the attitude toward substances by peers is very consistent to explain cannabis use. (3) The most important recipe explaining resistance to cannabis is simply parental disagreement with substance consumption (cons=0.956, cov=0.861) (4) Factors as gender, religiosity, parental monitoring and age show also a relevant impact on attitude toward cannabis use. However, whereas some of them impact symmetrically on use and non-use this does not follow in factors such as parental monitoring or age.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0219.v2
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: Logic-based models; Boolean models; executable models; qualitative dynamical modelling; omic data integration; in silico simulations; formal verification
Online: 30 July 2021 (15:05:03 CEST)
Discrete, logic-based models are increasingly used to describe biological mechanisms. Initially introduced to study gene regulation, these models evolved to cover various molecular mechanisms, such as signalling, transcription factor cooperativity, and even metabolic processes. The abstract nature and amenability of discrete models to robust mathematical analyses make them appropriate for addressing a wide range of complex biological problems. Recent technological breakthroughs have generated a wealth of high throughput data. Novel, literature-based representations of biological processes and emerging algorithms offer new opportunities for model construction. Here, we review up-to-date efforts to address challenging biological questions by incorporating omic data into logic-based models, and discuss critical difficulties in constructing and analysing integrative, large-scale, logic-based models of biological mechanisms.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202101.0399.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; coronavirus; mass testing; social isolation; social distancing; mental health; students; focus groups; qualitative
Online: 20 January 2021 (13:03:57 CET)
We aimed to explore university students’ perceptions and experiences of SARS-CoV-2 mass asymptomatic testing, social distancing and self-isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic. This qualitative study comprised of four rapid online focus groups conducted at a higher education institution in England during high alert (tier 2) national COVID-19 restrictions. Data were analysed thematically. Participants were purposively sampled university students (n = 25) representing a range of gender, age, living circumstances (on/off campus) and SARS-CoV-2 testing/self-isolation experiences. Six themes with 16 sub-themes emerged from the analysis of the qualitative data: ‘Term-time Experiences’, ‘Risk Perception and Worry’, ‘Engagement in Protective Behaviours’, ‘Openness to Testing’, ‘Barriers to Testing’ and ‘General Wellbeing’. Students described feeling safe on campus, believed most of their peers are adherent to protective behaviours and were positive towards asymptomatic testing in university settings. University communications about COVID-19 testing and social behaviours need to be timely and presented in a more inclusive way to reach groups of students who currently feel marginalised. Barriers to engagement with SARS-CoV-2 testing, social distancing and self-isolation were primarily associated with fear of the mental health impacts of self-isolation, including worry about how they will cope, high anxiety, low mood, guilt relating to impact on others and loneliness. Loneliness in students could be mitigated through increased intra-university communications and a focus on establishment of low COVID-risk social activities to help students build and enhance their social support networks. These findings are particularly pertinent in the context of mass asymptomatic testing programmes being implemented in educational settings and high numbers of students being required to self-isolate. Universities need to determine the support needs of students during self-isolation and prepare for the long-term impacts of the pandemic on student mental health and welfare support services.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201807.0338.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Other Keywords: Self-management, type 2 diabetes, immigrants, health systems, chronic diseases, qualitative study, lifestyle change, thematic analysis, socioeconomically disadvantaged, Stockholm
Online: 19 July 2018 (00:44:34 CEST)
Studies comparing provider and patient views and experiences of self-management within primary healthcare are particularly scarce in disadvantaged settings. In this qualitative study, patient and provider perceptions of self-management were investigated in five socio-economically disadvantaged communities in Stockholm. Twelve individual interviews and three group interviews were conducted. Semi-structured interview guides included questions on perceptions of diabetes diagnosis, diabetes care services available at primary health care centers, patient and provider interactions, and self-management support. Data was analysed using thematic analysis. Two overarching themes were identified. These were characterized by inherent dilemmas representing confusions and conflicts that patients and providers experienced in their daily life or practice respectively: adopting and maintaining new routines through practical and appropriate lifestyle choices (patients); and balancing expectations and pre-conceptions of self-management (providers). Patients found it difficult to tailor information and lifestyle advice to fit their daily life. Healthcare providers recognized that patients were in need of support to change behavior, but saw themselves as inadequately equipped to deal with the different cultural and social aspects of self-management. This study highlights patient and provider dilemmas that influence the interaction and collaboration between patients and providers with respect to communication and uptake of self-management advice.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202201.0198.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Other Keywords: Public Safety Personnel; First Responders; Mental Disorders; Mental Health; Well-Being; Trauma; Operational Stress Injuries; Post-Traumatic Stress Injuries; Role Identity Theory; Qualitative Research
Online: 14 January 2022 (08:31:02 CET)
Role identity theory describes the purpose and meaning in life that comes, in part, from occupying social roles. While robustly linked to health and well-being, this may become, however, when an individual is unable to fulfil the perceived requirements of an especially salient role in the way that they believe they should. Amid high rates of mental illness among public safety personnel, we interviewed a purposely selected sample of 21 paramedics from a single service in Ontario, Canada to explore incongruence between an espoused and able-to-enact paramedic role identity. Situated in an interpretivist epistemology, and using successive rounds of thematic analysis, we developed a framework for role identity dissonance wherein chronic, identity-relevant disruptive events cause emotional and psychological distress. While some participants were able to recalibrate their sense of self and understanding of the role, for others, this dissonance was irreconcilable, contributing to disability and lost time from work. In addition to contributing a novel perspective on paramedic mental health and well-being, our work also offers a modest contribution to the theory in using the paramedic context as an example to consider identity disruption through chronic workplace stress.