ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202309.0388.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Electoral systems; Strategic voting; Condorcet voting; Voting efficiency
Online: 6 September 2023 (09:54:31 CEST)
In the quest to develop a more effective and representative electoral system that offers a higher global satisfaction while also resisting strategic voting, this paper introduces the Bipartisan/Range method. This electoral system operates in two separate rounds: a first round where voters rank candidates, and if no Condorcet winner emerges, a second round where voters score candidates within a small head set known as the bipartisan set. The proposed method takes inspiration from randomized Condorcet voting system, probably the most strategy-resistant Condorcet methods, but eliminates the non-determinism while improving efficiency in the case of paradoxes. By introducing an unpredictable second round spaced in time and prohibiting predictive surveys, voters face difficulties in anticipating paradoxes, and insincere votes carry inherent risks. Furthermore, the Bipartisan set's limited size mitigates the range voting problem of exaggerated votes. Thus, the method has the potential to be both efficient in reflecting voters' preferences and resistant to strategic voting, exceeding expectations from Arrow's theorem. The method's versatility allows for extensions to multiple candidates, enhancing its applicability across various electoral contexts. Additionally, we have developed BipartiVox, an online platform specifically designed to conduct elections using the Bipartisan/Range method, making it accessible to a wider audience. In conclusion, the Bipartisan/Range method represents a substantial contribution to the field of voting systems, providing a practical, strategy-resistant, and efficient alternative that aligns closely with genuine voter preferences.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.1586.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: smart cities; TAM; decision making; fuzzy logic; smart tourism; customer journey
Online: 24 July 2023 (10:52:09 CEST)
Due to the irruption of new technologies in cities such as mobile applications, geographic infor-mation systems, Big Data, Internet of Things (IoT) or Artificial Intelligence (AI), new approaches to citizen management are being developed with the aim of adapting citizen services to this new en-vironment. These new services can enable city governments and businesses to offer their citizens a truly immersive experience that facilitates their day-to-day lives and ultimately improves their quality of life. In this sense, it is important to emphasize that all investments in infrastructure and technological developments in smart cities will be wasted if the citizens for whom they have been created eventually do not use them for whatever reason. To avoid these kinds of problems, the citizen's level of adaptation to the technologies should be evaluated. However, although much has been studied about new technological developments, studies to validate the actual impact and user acceptance of these technological models are much more limited. This paper tries to fill this gap presenting a new model of recommender system based in the most cited and used model in the scientific and academic literature: the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) and using the most cited and agreed upon criteria in the existing literature. To accomplish the objective, this study in-troduces a novel recommender system that utilizes a fuzzy 2-tuple linguistic model in conjunction with the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) method to prioritize and personalize the relationship between tourists and smart cities. The methodology proposed in this paper was tested and validated in a case of study through different clusters to derive global recommendations tailored to each specific cluster. The main findings reveal that the use of technology is closely linked to the ability to enjoy personalized experiences in the realm of Smart Cities and Smart Tourism. As future works, authors recommend extending the recommender system model to any cluster of tourists using the proposed methodology and evaluate also other kind of disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) in supporting the citizens.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.1598.v2
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: social network analysis; cidanau watershed management; fkdc; Banten province
Online: 11 July 2023 (08:25:51 CEST)
Social network analysis is extensively employed for the examination of relationships and networks among actors across diverse disciplines and thematic research domains. Nevertheless, the utilization of this approach in agriculture and natural resources, particularly pertaining to watershed management, has been relatively limited. The objective of this study is to conduct an analysis of the social interaction and networks of Cidanau Watershed Management (CWM) stakeholders and measure the nodes of units as individuals or organizations in relation to the role and influence of each other through a quantitative approach. The results of the data analysis show that Fkdc has a high degree of centrality and centrality betweenness. This shows that Fkdc has a strong influence and controls CWM network interaction. Conversely, Hs (households) have a low degree of centrality, and centrality betweenness values have a low influence and role in actors’ networks. According to the closeness centrality parameter, it is observed that both Households (Hs) and Universities (Univ) have exhibited the shortest geodesic distance in relation to other stakeholders within the network, thus indicating their highest level of closeness. It means that households and universities had interdependency and were controlled by others. The lowest centrality of Fkdc means that Fkdc has independence of influence and high control access over others. There are four CWM network clusters based on total link strength. Fkdc demonstrates outstanding leadership qualities, enjoys a strong reputation, and possesses a high degree of popularity within the network. Furthermore, Fkdc serves as a positive central node that effectively brings together the interests of all actors, fostering a collective commitment towards shared goals and mutual rewards. In the CWM case, Fkdc is a sustainable watershed organization that acts as a central network body and plays a fundamental role as an intermediary between networks and interactions. Ultimately, with regards to the viewpoint of CWM, the decentralization of watersheds aimed to facilitate wider public engagement by establishing Fkdc as a central network entity and assuming a crucial role as a medium for the dissemination of information, exchange of ideas, and the exertion of influence among its members.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202307.0351.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Keywords: Social Media; Social Networks; Crisis Management; Mental Model; Situational Awareness; Disinformation, Misinformation and Fake News; Infodemic; Covid 19
Online: 5 July 2023 (16:02:34 CEST)
This paper proposes a concise literature review aimed at identifying the current body of knowledge on the adoption of Social Networks in Crisis Management. The major input is a structured research question based on the initial reading around the topic. Before the recent pan-demic, most literature has focused on local crises, with a relatively low number of exceptions. Additionally, self-organizing system are spontaneous established between people who are af-fected by a crisis. Among the identified challenges, there is the need to integrate official commu-nication by emergency agencies with citizen-generated contents in a contest of credibility and trustworthiness. In certain cases, it has been reported a lack of specific competence, knowledge, and expertise, as well as a lack of sufficient policies and guidelines in the use of Social Networks. Those challenges need to be framed by considering the classic difficulties to provide timely and accurate information, to deal with fake news, unverified or misleading information, and infor-mation overload. Bridging major gaps though advanced analytics and AI-based technology is expected to provide a key contribution to establish and safely enable in practice an effective and efficient communication, to contrast dissonant mental models, which are often fostered by Social Networks, and to enable a shared situational awareness.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.1431.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: relationship marketing; relational benefits; habit; revisit intention; personal service business
Online: 21 June 2023 (08:53:53 CEST)
The intention to repurchase is a key component in relationship marketing. However, minimal attention has been paid to how customers’ habitual behavior moderates the relationship between customers’ evaluation of benefits received from a service provider and the intention to revisit, specifically in a personal service business where customer-service provider interactions likely constitute the core of a sustainable relationship. To address this gap, the current study proposes and tests a comprehensive model to advance the theory of relationship marketing (RM) and additionally contributes to social exchange theory (SET) as well as the theory of repurchase decision-making (TRD) in the business service context. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was employed to examine the relationships of the research model. Based on data collected from 482 customers on their perceptions of hairstylists, the empirical findings revealed that relational benefits significantly affect post-experience behavior-satisfaction, trust and relationship commitment, and subsequently boost the intention to revisit. Furthermore, habit as an unconscious factor moderates the paths between revisit intention and its determinants. Although several limitations exist, the findings practically and theoretically make a contribution to the literature on relationship marketing.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1548.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Fin-tech; Financial Inclusion; Maximizing Finance; Digital Financial Inclusion; The Better Than Cash Alliance; mSTAR; Developing countries; Sustainable Development Goals
Online: 23 May 2023 (03:35:22 CEST)
This research suggests a multi-stakeholder framework to increase the use of fintech in Africa, which would help the continent boost its financial inclusion and reach its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The study evaluates previous research and frameworks that have been created to aid in the adoption of fintech by several stakeholders in developing nations, some of which have been tested in African nations with limited success. To begin with, the study suggests the use of the World Bank’s Maximising Finance for Development (MFD) approach through the prioritization of national ownership, creation of an enabling environment for private sector investment, partnering with multilateral development banks and other stakeholders, fostering innovation and digital literacy, and focusing on cost-effective, non-government guaranteed financing. In the same vein, in line with the G20’s High-Level Principles for Digital Financial Inclusion, the adoption of financial technologies and digital financial services in Africa can be promoted through the creation of a country-specific strategy. Each government can create a regulatory environment that encourages innovation and competition, improve its digital infrastructure, increase its digital literacy and awareness, and collaborate with private sector stakeholders to expand financial inclusion. Furthermore, The Better Than Cash Alliance’s strategy to increase fintech adoption can also be implemented through partnership with businesses, international organizations, and other nations. By joining the Alliance, countries can enact rules and regulations that facilitate fintech adoption, promote awareness and education, and design and execute national digital payment infrastructure with the help of fintech companies. Finally, the mSTAR initiative suggests collaborating with USAID, in order to provide support to underrepresented populations, incorporate digital financial services, increase public-private collaboration, and educate and train policymakers, practitioners, and technologists. By implementing these strategies, African nations can accelerate the adoption of fintech solutions and increase financial inclusion.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0040.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: farmers; first-generation; decision-making; young farmers; beginning farmers
Online: 2 May 2023 (02:07:33 CEST)
This research aimed to determine salient factors affecting the decision to become a beginning organic farmer. New and beginning organic farmers have unique characteristics, showcasing their dedication to environmental justice and social justice at the expense of their own businesses. This research employed a multiple-case case study design. We conducted semi-structured interviews with 40 first-generation farmers who operate organic farms in Arkansas, Florida, or Georgia. We analyzed interview transcripts using the qualitative analysis approach of coding. Our results revealed the reasons that people with little practical knowledge start farms. They are inspired by those around them who succeed and encouraged by influential characters in the field who assure them they can do something they love and be profitable. This research showed that first-generation farmers find inspiration and develop values rooted in food justice. Our findings have implications for developing and implementing current and future programmatic activities that aim to enhance beginning farmer training and workforce development. Identifying sources of inspiration will help researchers and service providers target newer and beginning farmers to support a vibrant food system, including a burgeoning market opportunity, developing strong communities around food, and building grassroots solutions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202304.1042.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: machine learning; ensemble learning; border management; food safety; risk prediction
Online: 27 April 2023 (04:45:20 CEST)
: Border management serves as a crucial control checkpoint for governments to regulate the quality and safety of imported food. In 2020, the ensemble learning prediction model EL V.1 was introduced to Taiwan's border food management. This model primarily assesses the risk of imported food by combining five algorithms to determine whether quality sampling should be performed on imported food at the border. In this study, a second-generation ensemble learning prediction model, EL V.2, was developed based on seven algorithms to enhance the "detection rate of unqualified cases" and improve the robustness of the model. The chi-square test was employed to compare the efficacy of "pre-launch (2019) random sampling inspection" and "post-launch (2020–2022) model prediction sampling inspection". For cases recommended for inspection by the ensemble learning model and subsequently inspected, the unqualified rates were 5.10%, 6.36%, and 4.39% in 2020, 2021, and 2022, respectively, which were significantly higher (p=0.000***) compared with the random sampling rate of 2.09% in 2019. The prediction indices established by the confusion matrix were used to further evaluate the prediction effects of EL V.1 and EL V.2, and the EL V.2 model exhibited superior predictive performance compared with EL V.1, and both models outperformed random sampling.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202303.0022.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: decision-making; plant movement; kinematics; plant behavior
Online: 1 March 2023 (11:04:12 CET)
Finding a suitable support is a key process in the life history of climbing plants. Climbers that find a suitable support have greater performance and fitness than those that remain prostrate. Numerous studies on climbing plant behavior have elucidated the mechanistic details of support searching and attachment. Far fewer studies have addressed the ecological significance of support-searching behavior and the factors that affect it. Among these, the diameter of supports influences their suitability for twining plants. When support diameter increases beyond some point climbing plants are unable to maintain tensional forces and therefore lose attachment to the trellis. Here we further investigate this issue by putting pea plants in the situation to choose between supports of different diameters while their movement was recorded by means of a three-dimensional motion analysis system. The results indicate that the way climbing plants move can vary depending on whether they are presented with one or two potential supports. Furthermore, when presented with a choice between a thin and a thick support, the plants showed a distinct preference for the former than the latter. The present findings shed further light on how climbers make decisions as far as support search is concerned, and provide evidence that plants adopt one of several alternative plastic responses in a way that optimally corresponds to environmental scenarios.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0395.v2
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: decarb-efficiency; decarbonisation; industrial energy saving; cost effectiveness; strategic decision-making; climate neutrality; net-zero; drivers; motivators; resilience
Online: 30 November 2022 (03:36:29 CET)
Already more than 140 countries consider or have pledged to reach net-zero emission targets by 2050 or earlier and the share of global emissions falling into an emission pricing scheme has steeply increased over the past three years. Even where there are no direct implications for industry (yet), there is a series of subtle pressure points driving an increasing number of companies across the globe to work towards climate neutrality and pledging ambitious emission reduction goals. This article sheds light on the pressure points, the subtle triggers, the underlying considerations as well as the hoped-for benefits for industrial companies from achieving net-zero emissions. The observations and ideas presented in this paper are derived from quantitative data obtained via the Energy Efficiency Index of German Industry (EEI) and qualitative data. Not only societal, work force, supply chain and investor expectations play a large role, but also many strategic considerations which have the potential to make the company more resilient and profitable, particularly in time of crisis. Those companies that do not move towards decarbonisation, on the other hand, may face a costly late-mover disadvantage. This piece uncovers subtle interconnections, helping stakeholders from industry and beyond to grasp opportunities and challenges ahead.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0341.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Real State; Regressors; Artificial Intelligence; Machine Learning; Data-informed; Boston
Online: 22 September 2022 (10:33:09 CEST)
Real estate market analysis and place-based decision-making can both benefit from understanding house price development. Although considerable amounts of interest have been devoted to housing price modelling, the assessment of house price fluctuation still requires further comparing studies. Housing price prediction is challenging as contributing factors are quite dynamic and subject to a variety of regulating elements. The future understanding of the housing market trends not only provides sufficient customers’ investment trust potential but also enables the financial support to progress more realistic in advance. In this study, a comprehensive data-informed framework is developed to investigate and anticipate real estate house prices using historical data by combining explanatory features. We examined about 500 houses in the Boston area as a case study and discussed how the increase in housing prices could vary by each of the contributing components. Fourteen Machine Learning (ML) regressors imply to the dataset and lead to a comparative study of the accuracy of all the models. ML-based regressors forecast real estate home prices as a function of thirteen influencing factors. The most informative features were also selected by conducting the Permutation Feature Importance technique on all the features The study provides a comprehensive tool for evaluating the robustness and efficiency of ML models for housing price predictions. The results highlighted Random Forest as the best model has an R2 equals to 0.88 and Voting Regressor as the second highest rated model has R2 equals to 0.87. Results of multivariate exploratory data analysis also implied that the average number of rooms and percentage of the lower status of the population have the most significant impact on the price range predictions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202107.0004.v3
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Mental Models; Dynamic Decision Making; Systems Thinking; Learning
Online: 24 August 2022 (03:49:41 CEST)
This article is a theoretical contribution to mental model research, which currently has different threads. Whereas some researchers focus on the perceived causal structure, others also include decision policies and decisions. We focus on the link between recognized causal structure (“mental models of dynamic systems”) and policies, proposing Johnson-Laird’s theory of mental models as the link. The resulting framework hypothesizes two types of systematic mental model errors: (1) misrepresentation of the system’s structure and (2) failure to deploy relevant mental models of possibilities. Examination of three experiments through this lens reveals errors of both types. Therefore, we propose that the cognitive theory of mental models opens a path to better understand how people construct their decision policies and develop interventions to reduce such mental model errors. The article closes by raising several questions for empirical studies of the reasoning process leading from mental models of dynamic systems to decision policies.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0146.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: International Online Shopping; Countries' Level of Economic Development; International Online Consumers; Chinese mobile brands
Online: 8 August 2022 (10:23:07 CEST)
Until now, the literature on Chinese International Online Shopping (CIOS) (B2C export from China) mainly concentrated on the potential income that it constitutes for Chinese international trade. However, regarding International Online Consumers' (IOCs) purchase behaviors, research does not provide insight into the impact of Countries' Level of Economic Development (CLED) on the IOCs' preferences and choices about Chinese brands. Based on 9971 purchases about Chinese mobile phone brands, countries' macroeconomic data, and a multinomial logistics model (MLM), we examined IOCs' preferences and choices about Chinese brands. The result shows that the CLED influences IOCs' preferences and choices. Consequently, accounting of CLED in consumers’ preferences and choices introduces a new dimension in understanding IOCs' behaviors and attitudes towards Chinese mobile phone brands. This work contributes to Chinese brands' globalization research from the perspective of CLED. Such a model can be used to guide e-retailers and brand managers.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202206.0231.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: industrial cluster; Taobao Village; expansion mechanism
Online: 16 June 2022 (05:20:09 CEST)
China’s rural e-commerce has been developing rapidly. Taobao Villages are combination of e-commerce and rural industries. When rural e-commerce coverage evolves from Taobao village to Taobao town, the scale of industrial clusters has been expanding synchronously. This paper investigates flower and seedling industrial cluster in Xinhe Town, Yanji Town and Miaotou Town of Shuyang County, China, and conducts the econometric analysis of the expansive determinants of flower and seedling industrial cluster of Taobao Villages. An effective sample of 263 was obtained through a face-to-face survey of e-merchants of flower and seedling in the Shuyang County of Jiangsu Province. Bases on the structural equation modeling, series of test results show that the data can be used to calculate the path regression. The outcomes shows that creation of e-merchants of flower and seedling, integration of e-commerce platform, supply chain friendliness, involvement of e-commerce service providers, and governmental policy guidance are driving expansion of flower and seedling industrial cluster together, moreover, the five forces interact with each other. This implies that expansion of flower and seedling industrial cluster is a systematic process, each stakeholder needs to pay attention to the role of other forces, and five forces achieve a balanced situation in the cluster.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202202.0043.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: sharing activity; Covid-19 impact; core elements; sustainable development
Online: 3 February 2022 (09:58:24 CET)
Sharing activity is getting higher attention due to increasing popularity in recent years. In the paper, the authors investigated the main elements affecting the sharing activity. (1) Literature review: The theoretical part starts from the revision of definitions of sharing activity; description of the links between sharing and sustainable development, policy recommendations and relevant regulation in the field; later on, the study emphasises the key elements important for sharing. Finally, the authors investigated how the Covid-19 pandemic affected sharing activity; (2) Methods: During empirical research, the authors revised the list of 37 variables. The study uses data for each of the 27 EU countries from 2011 to 2020. The authors investigated correlation between macroeconomics variables to determine key variables for the regression model; (3) Results: The authors constructed a dynamic regression model that can be applied to predict the number of participants visiting sharing platforms in the European Union (EU); (4) Conclusions: The study shows that seeking to forecast the number of visits to sharing platforms it is necessary to use values of main macroeconomic variables such as consumer price index, productivity index, total unemployment rate, the number of users and households connected to the Internet, etc.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202201.0083.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Modeling; risk averse; decision maker; choice; strategy; utility
Online: 6 January 2022 (11:55:01 CET)
This paper presents the behavior of decision makers, the possible choices and the strategies 1 resulting from the uncertainties related to the integration of renewable energies. Its uncertainties 2 are the risks associated with the volatility of renewable sources, the dynamics of energy production 3 as well as the planning and operation of the electricity grid. The goal is to model the risk-averse 4 decision-maker’s behavior and the choice of integrating renewable energies into the electrical system. 5 Following a bibliographic approach, we expose a methodology to model the decision-maker’s 6 behavior(risk aversion and predilection for risk) to risk taking. The risk-averse decision maker may 7 adopt nonlinear utility functions. Risk aversion is a behavior that reflects the desire to avoid risk 8 decisions and thus reduces the risk of adverse consequences. A decision support tool is provided to 9 the decision-maker to choose a best-fit strategy based on his preferences. The rational and risk-averse 10 decision-maker would seek to maximize a concave utility function instead of seeking to minimize its 11 cost. Taste or aversion to risk can be modeled by a thematic function of utility.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202112.0098.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Theory of planned behavior; Psychological factors; Sociodemographic factors; Behavior; Broker; Professional farmer; Cooperative farm; Probit model; Multinomial logit model; Marginal effect
Online: 7 December 2021 (11:12:22 CET)
The purposes of this study are based upon the theory of planned behavior (TPB) to examine the impact of past experiences of contract farming on selecting a specific type of contract farming in the future and then compare different psychological factors in the TPB for different potential contract farmer statuses. These statuses include homesteaders, farmers from cooperative farms, farmers from production and sales teams, professional farmers, and brokers. The impact of factors in the TPB for a particular contract type on potential contract farmers is further to compute. To this end, data are collected in three major sweet potato production areas in Taiwan. The results show that the farmers’ past contract farming experience does not influence the selection of the contract in the future. As for the selection of contract type, strengthening the perception and motivating the behavioral intention of contract farming for cooperative farms will increase the probability of selecting an unclassified sweet potato size contract. On the other hand, enhancing perceived behavioral control factors and behavioral intention factors for professional farmers and brokers is apt to have a relatively high probability of selecting those types involving the highest amount or the best price to obtain the best deal.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202111.0434.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Investigation; citizens; urban context; Participation; regeneration
Online: 23 November 2021 (15:29:15 CET)
Public participation in the decision-making process in Urban Interventions is the key to the success of the project for improving the quality of life of its citizens. The citizen has the democratic right to express his needs and aspiration; he is the final user who experiences the outcomes of the policy decisions. Non involvement of the citizens in the planning process can bring about the misinterpretation of the intention of political leadership and lead to opposition and protest. The inadequate understanding of citizens of the urban context makes public participation ineffective. In this context, the decision-makers are often faced with the challenges of the level of confidence of the citizens about their ideas and responses being incorporated in the project and the confidence of the citizens in the local urban authority in its ability to carry out the project. However, the decision-makers base their decision on the assumption that the citizens have a general understanding of the urban issues. This research work investigates the basis of this assumption. 1. Do the citizens have confidence that the local urban authority considers their choices and responses in the course of decision making 2. Do the citizens have the confidence that the local urban authority can undertake the Urban Regeneration project 3. Whether in the decision-making process of urban regeneration intervention, citizen's responses are backed by a general understanding of urban issues. The case study taken up is of Hassan city. Five areas of crucial importance have been selected based on the development plan report of the city. The integrated approach aims to find the most appropriate area for proposing the Urban Regeneration project. The framework adopted includes 1. Questionnaire survey: to collect citizens’ responses 2. Analysis of variance (ANNOVA) for analysis of the data collected.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202111.0029.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Real-world fuel consumption rate; machine learning; big data; light-duty vehicle; China
Online: 2 November 2021 (09:40:05 CET)
Private vehicle travel is the most basic mode of transportation, and the effective control of the real-world fuel consumption rate of light-duty vehicles plays a vital role in promoting sustainable economic development as well as achieving a green low-carbon society. Therefore, the impact factors of individual carbon emission must be elucidated. This study builds five different models to estimate real-world fuel consumption rate of light-duty vehicles in China. The results reveal that the Light Gradient Boosting Machine (LightGBM) model performs better than the linear regression, Naïve Bayes regression, Neural Network regression, and Decision Tree regression models, with mean absolute error of 0.911 L/100 km, mean absolute percentage error of 10.4%, mean square error of 1.536, and R squared (R2) of 0.642. This study also assesses a large number of factors, from which three most important factors are extracted, namely, reference fuel consumption rate value, engine power and light-duty vehicle brand. Furthermore, a comparative analysis reveals that the vehicle factors with greater impact on real-world fuel consumption rate are vehicle brand, engine power, and engine displacement. Average air pressure, average temperature, and sunshine time are the three most important climate factors.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202109.0433.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: GIAHS; farmer involvement; youth inclusivity; tourism management; Tokimai branding
Online: 24 September 2021 (12:48:06 CEST)
Sado island in Niigata prefecture is among the first GIAHS designated sites in Japan and among developed countries worldwide. Recent studies have pointed out the need to incorporate culture and farmer opinions to further strengthen GIAHS inclusivity in rural farming. In connection to this, the study explored whether farmer visibility, which is highlighted by GIAHS designation, actually translates to farmers’ actual perception of GIAHS involvement. A survey was conducted among Sado island farmers to determine their knowledge and perception of their GIAHS involvement, in connection to their perspectives on youth involvement, Sado island branding, and tourism management. Results showed that 56.3% of Sado island farmers feel uninvolved or unsure towards GIAHS, which is in stark contrast with the prevalent farming method in the area which is special farming (complies with GIAHS regulations). Further analyses revealed that farmers who feel that GIAHS does not promote youth involvement, Sado island branding, and tourism management have higher predisposition to perceive themselves as uninvolved towards GIAHS. This study highlights the need for careful reevaluation and integration of farmer insights and needs to the current GIAHS implementation in Sado island and in other GIAHS as well.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0275.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Healthcare Priority-setting; Health Technology Assessment; Essential Health Packages, Low to Middle Income Countries; Equity; Efficiency; Evidence-Informed Decision Making
Online: 12 August 2021 (13:14:51 CEST)
There is a systematic exclusion of gender-based violence, safe abortion, reproductive cancers, infertility services, comprehensive sexuality education, sexuality services, and STI’s other than HIV in essential health packages in LMICs. To accelerate progress on sexual reproductive health (SRH), the Guttmacher–Lancet Commission proposed the adoption of these interventions into an essential health package of SRH services that should be universally available. In this commentary, we use a healthcare priority-setting processes lens to review the importance of these services for universal health coverage. We isolate inherent challenges in social value judgments for terminal, process and content evidence for their healthcare priority-setting. We then advance promising emerging practical examples from low to middle-income countries on evidence-informed decision-making processes. We recommend capacity development through regional support, generating equity and efficiency evidence and strengthening political and publicly acceptable processes to institutionalise and operationalise evidence-informed decision-making.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0786.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Precision agriculture; Intention to adopt a technology; Attitudes towards the use of technology; Technology acceptance model; Variable rate irrigation; Fruit production; Grapevine production
Online: 31 December 2020 (10:10:50 CET)
Irrigated agriculture determines large blue water withdrawals, and it is considered a key intervention area to reach sustainable development objectives. Precision agriculture technologies have the potential to mitigate water resource depletion that often characterizes conventional agricultural approaches. This study investigates the factors influencing farmers' intentions to adopt variable rate irrigation (VRI) technology. The Technology Acceptance Model 3 (TAM-3) was employed as a theoretical framework to design a survey to identify the factors influencing farmers' decision-making process when adopting VRI. Data were gathered through quantitative face-to-face interviews with a sample of 138 fruit and grapevine producers from the Northeast of Italy (Veneto, Emilia-Romagna, Trentino-Alto Adige, Friuli-Venezia Giulia). Data were analyzed using partial least squares path modelling (PLS-PM). The results highlight that personal attitudes, such as perceived usefulness and subjective norm, positively influence the intention to adopt VRI. Also, the perceived ease of use positively affects intention, but it is moderated by subject experience.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0065.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: group decision-making; fuzzy analytic hierarchy process; consensus; wafer foundry; COVID-19 pandemic
Online: 2 December 2020 (14:10:13 CET)
In the existing group decision-making fuzzy analytic hierarchy process (FAHP) methods, the consensus among experts has rarely been fully reached. To fill this gap, in this study, a pre-aggregation fuzzy collaborative intelligence (FCI)-based FAHP approach is proposed. In the proposed pre-aggregation FCI-based FAHP approach, fuzzy intersection is applied to aggregate experts’ pairwise comparison results if these pairwise comparison results overlap. The aggregation result is a matrix of polygonal fuzzy numbers. Subsequently, alpha-cut operations are applied to derive the fuzzy priorities of criteria from the aggregation result. The pre-aggregation FCI-based FAHP approach has been applied to select suitable alternative suppliers for a wafer foundry in Taiwan amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The experimental results revealed that the pre-aggregation FCI-based FAHP approach significantly reduced the uncertainty inherent in the decision-making process by deriving fuzzy priorities with very narrow ranges.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202011.0036.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Cultural Heritage; Adaptive Reuse; Urban Regeneration; Community-Based Approach; Decision-Making Process, Intrinsic Value
Online: 2 November 2020 (11:36:31 CET)
The international debate on the adaptive re-use of cultural heritage sites following the Sustainable Development Goals becomes more central than ever in the implementation of circular economy models for urban policies. The new values that characterise the cultural assets, considered as the result of a collaborative process, can enhance both the manufactured capital and the human capital, and to carry out the system of relationships that bind them. At the same time, the values of historical-artistic assets and produced by community-based regeneration processes are particularly relevant when they characterise abandoned commons and cult buildings, to which communities attribute an identity and symbolic value. Starting from the definition of the concept of Complex Social Value, we propose a methodological process that combines approaches and techniques typical of deliberative evaluations and collaborative decision-making processes. The aim is to identify the complex value chains generated by adaptive re-use, in which intrinsic values can play a driving role in the regeneration strategies of discarded cultural heritage. The experimentation, tested with the project “San Sebastiano del Monte dei Morti Living Lab” (SSMOLL), activates a creative and cultural Living Lab in the former church of “Morticelli”, in the historic centre of Salerno, in southern Italy. The re-use project is part of a more comprehensive process of social innovation and culture-led urban regeneration triggered in Salerno starting from SSMOLL.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0193.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Science and policy - making; Environmental communication; Pan - Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change
Online: 9 September 2020 (03:13:14 CEST)
The science‐policy interface in climate change adaptation became better managed over the past decades. However, the scientists and other knowledge producers, as well as policy makers still need to take bolder steps to more effectively engage with others to apply science and shape up policies. This paper aims to provide practical recommendations, intended to promote conversations between science and policy sectors to address climate change issues. Here, I used two different approaches to synthesize experiences and identify recommendations: a literature review and a case study. The paper stress main findings: (1) The linear communication model is still commonly involved in the science - policy dialogue and proved to be useful to increase the relevance of science and data products to decision makers. (2) When a gap between knowledge producer and knowledge user or decision maker exists, the need for a third party to specialize in bridging the gap become essential. (3) Indigenous people and knowledge must be involved in adaptation policy making based on legitimation local and traditional knowledge, designing the consultation process to broadly engage local and indigenous people, facilitating meaningful dialogues between traditional knowledge and science, and developing initiatives to strengthen skills and capacity of indigenous communities.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0047.v2
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: design for society; design for sustainability; design under uncertainty; circular design; donut economics; life cycle analysis
Online: 5 August 2020 (04:50:02 CEST)
Since the beginning, humans advanced their civilization by making better tools to improve their lives. Tools and products were designed for better living considering manufacturing issues, cost and time as predominant criteria. It has become clear that not considering environment and society, both at local/global levels, has now become a major impediment affecting living conditions on a large portion of the Earth and in many societies. Design methodologies should lead to creative solutions with consideration to engineering and economics for practicality but also to environmental and social constraints for sustainability. We propose a comprehensive design methodology based on multidisciplinary design to include the knowledge of humanities, environmentalists, science and engineering, and allowing for experts’ inputs from these areas to provide a holistic approach to engineering design . For example, experts in humanities are expected to interact with stakeholders to evaluate their value systems to provide guidance for the design. The methodology that we synthesize is new and combines (i) Societal level impacts at all scales, (ii) Environmental impacts and (iii) Engineering design with economic impacts, including uncertainty considerations. The proposed design methodology is called Social-Environmental-Economical-Engineering Framework (SEEEF). It can utilize concepts and tools such as Circular Design, Doughnut Economics, design based on environmental life cycle analysis, among others. SEEEF is quantity based and provides steps for evaluating any project or product in an objective manner and will help train engineers in design for sustainability. It also provides non-engineers with a significant role in design to increase their understanding of the hard constraints of engineering. Ultimately, SEEEF allows society to take an informed decision considering short/long term and local/global impacts of the design and the pertinent uncertainties.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0086.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: COVID-19; removing restrictions; syntropy; proportionality; number of diseases
Online: 4 August 2020 (11:04:29 CEST)
A new – syntropic – criterion obtained using the synergetic theory of information has been proposed for determining the start date for the cancellation of restrictive measures in the COVID-19 pandemic. Under this criterion, the restrictions should be lifted when the average number of new cases per day during a week becomes disproportionately smaller than at the peak of the pandemic. The article gives the derivation of this criterion, and its practical use is shown by the example of a number of EU countries. In this case, a comparison is made of the dates set by the syntropic criterion with the actual dates of the beginning of the lifting of restrictions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0550.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: COVID-19; strategic management; scenario analysis; response plans; lockdown
Online: 30 April 2020 (22:47:23 CEST)
Global pandemic COVID-19 is in stage 4 of widespread local transmission in Bangladesh- the country which did not have a noteworthy health policy and legislative structures to combat COVID-19 like a pandemic. Early strategic planning and groundwork for evolving and established challenges are crucial to assemble resources and react in an appropriate timely manner. This article, therefore, focuses on the public perception of comparative lockdown scenario analysis and how they may affect the sustainable development and the strategic management regime of COVID-19 pandemic in Bangladesh socioeconomically. Response from 159 respondents was collected via a purposive sampling survey method through a questionnaire, and 54 statements were collected for scenario analysis. Datasets were analyzed through a set of statistical techniques including Principal Component Analysis (PCA), hierarchical Cluster Analysis (CA), Pearson’s correlation matrix (PCM), Linear regression analysis (LRA), and psychometric characteristics were included in the Classical Test Theory (CTT) analysis. There were good associations among the lockdown scenarios and response strategies to be formulated. A strong significant positive relationship was observed between people who will start moving towards regular life and the formal and informal economic activities will be started in lockdown scenario 1(r=0.671, p<0.01). The scenario one describes how the death and infection rate will increase if Govt withdraw the partial lockdown before 40 to 50 days. Scenario 2 outlines people’s movement will enable low-level community transmission of COVID-19 with the infection and death rate will increase slowly (r=0.540, p<0.01). Moreover, there will be less supply of necessities of daily use with a price hike (r= 0.680, p<0.01). Scenario 3, full lock down will reduce the community transmission and death from COVID-19 (r=0.545, p<0.01). Moreover, along with the other problems gender discrimination and gender-based violence will increase rapidly (r=0.661, p<0.01). Form regression analysis, due to full lockdown, the formal and informal business, economy and education sector will be hampered severely (R=0.695), there was a strong association between the loss of livelihood and unemployment rate will increase due to business shutdown (p<0.01) and poor communities both in urban and rural areas will be affected severely (p<0.01).All these will further aggravate the humanitarian needs of the most vulnerable groups in the country in the coming months to be followed which needs to be dealt with proper response plans. It will undoubtedly affect the targets of global sustainable development goals (SDGs) of 2030 and all other development targets.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0009.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: sustainability assessment; farm level; AHP methodology; Greece
Online: 1 March 2020 (11:40:37 CET)
In recent years, farmers and policymakers have faced ample challenges and have struggled to support the sustainability of the agricultural sector. Sustainable agriculture encompasses multiple concepts, and its performance produces extensive debate about data requirements, appropriate indicators, evaluation methods, and tools. Under the European Union (EU) financed project FLINT (Farm Level Indicators for New Topics in policy evaluation), detailed data have been collected at the farm level to provide broader coverage of sustainability indicators on a wide range of relevant topics to facilitate the assessment of sustainability performance. The approach has been applied in a pilot network of representative farms at the EU level, considering the heterogeneity of the EU farming sector to provide data infrastructure with up to date information for sustainability indicators. This study aims to assess sustainability performance at the farm level in Greece. Representative and dominant agricultural systems, such as permanent crops, olive trees, arable crops, and livestock (sheep) farms, comprise the Greek sample. It uses the analytical hierarchy process (AHP) methodology and attempts to gain insights into the sustainability performance of agricultural systems. The outcome of the sustainability assessment reveals knowledge and develops support for strategic farm choices in order to support both farmers and policymakers towards more sustainable development plans. The results indicate that three typical Mediterranean farming systems, like permanent crops, olive trees, and extensive livestock systems (sheep farms), are more sustainable in contrast to intensive and arable crop farms.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202002.0101.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: accessibility; food service facilities; grocery retailers; city logistics; last-mile delivery
Online: 8 February 2020 (05:48:17 CET)
Access to food systems is essential to sustain urban life. In this paper, we discuss the differences concerning accessibility levels to food systems among potential consumers in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. The goal was to characterize spatial mismatches regarding food opportunities and identify suitable areas for sustainable food mile solutions, such as non-motorized home delivery and purchase trips. For this, we have spatially related: (i) the population concentration; (ii) the income of households; and (iii) accessibility measures considering both the spatial structure of food retailers and the distance between households and stores, considering the food mile. We have then used spatial statistics and spatial analysis methods to determine the spatial pattern of variables and the cumulative opportunity measure for households. There is great spatial differentiation regarding the accessibility levels of food retailers and the results can be considered to support the development of policy and land use regulation that can stimulate non-motorized and collaborative delivery as an effective last-mile solution.
CONCEPT PAPER | doi:10.20944/preprints202001.0339.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: decision-making; change; behavior; climate change; deforestation; social norms; lobbyist, climate denier
Online: 28 January 2020 (10:44:27 CET)
Leaders are failing to respond to the climate and environmental urgency the world is facing. A growing action gap, clearly visible during the recent CoP25, has been fueled by leaders' inability to respond efficiently to the mounting threats scientists—and increasingly society—are concerned about. Bridging this gap and tackling the growing polarization within society calls for leaders to accept the full complexity of the issues the world is facing. This will require them to question their understanding of these geopolitical affairs and embrace the dynamics at play, and avoid falling back on simplistic cognitive models. We propose a heuristic to convey the pathways available to decision-makers to make their way out of the current inaction impasse. By breaking free of this deadlock, a social transition will have the potential to take place, helping us to avoid crossing the climate system tipping points.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201912.0124.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Data Envelopment Analysis; efficiency; irrigation water; Robusta coffee; Vietnam
Online: 10 December 2019 (03:43:13 CET)
Recent prolonged dry periods and lack of irrigation water have severely affected the productivity of coffee farms’ in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. This paper analyzes the efficiency of irrigation water use for Robusta coffee (Coffea canephora) in Lam Dong province, Highlands, Vietnam. A Cobb-Douglas production function was used to determine coffee productivity’s response to the application of irrigation water and other production factors using data collected from 194 farmers while the Technical Efficiency (TE) and Irrigation Water Use Efficiency (IWUE) were analyzed using a Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) model. The correlation of different factors to IWUE was determined using the Tobit model. The production function analysis using Cobb-Douglas shows that the volume of irrigation water, amount of working capital, labor and farm size significantly influence coffee productivity. It also shows that indigenous farmers are more efficient in utilizing irrigation water than the (mostly Kinh) migrant farmers. The Tobit result, on the other hand. indicates that farmers’ experience, education level, distance of farm to water source, security of access to water source, extension contact and credit access significantly affect IWUE. The study findings further suggest that mitigating water shortages in coffee farms require sub-regional and national policy support such as better access to credit and extension services, training, land management and household-level effort to improve farming practices, through the application of appropriate technologies and traditional knowledge.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201906.0072.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: telematics; motor insurance; speed control; accident prevention
Online: 10 June 2019 (09:08:04 CEST)
We analyze real telematics information for a sample of drivers with usage-based insurance policies. We examine the statistical distribution of distance driven above the posted speed limit – which presents a strong positive asymmetry – using quantile regression models. We find that, at different percentile levels, the distance driven at speeds above the posted limit depends on total distance driven and, more generally, on such factors as the percentages of urban and nighttime driving and on the driver’s gender. However, the impact of these covariates differs according to the percentile level. We stress the importance of understanding telematics information, which should not be limited to simply characterizing average drivers, but can be useful for signaling dangerous driving by predicting quantiles associated with specific driver characteristics. We conclude that the risk of driving long distances above the speed limit is heterogeneous and, moreover, we show that prevention campaigns should target primarily male, non-urban drivers, especially if they present a high percentage of nighttime driving.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201906.0018.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: banana; cassava; potato; sweet potato; gender division-of-labour; decision-making
Online: 3 June 2019 (10:14:15 CEST)
This paper evaluates the determinants of decision making in relation to the production of four crops (banana, cassava, potato and sweet potato). Understanding the division of labour and decision-making in crop management may lead to designing better interventions targeted at improving efficiency in smallholder agriculture. A household quantitative survey with heads of households involving 261 women and 144 men in Burundi and 184 women and 222 men in Rwanda was conducted in 2014. Most of the decisions and labour provision during production of both cash crops (potato and banana) and food crops (sweet potato and cassava) were done jointly by men and women in male-headed households. Higher values for ‘credit access’, ‘land size’ and ‘farming as the main occupation of the household head’ increased the frequency of joint decision-making in male-headed households. A decline in the amount of farm income reduced the participation of men as decision makers. A reduction in total household income and proximity to the market was correlated with joint decision making. Gender norms also contributed to the lower participation of women in both decision-making and labour provision in banana and potato cultivation. Although a large proportion of decisions were made jointly, women perceived that men participate more in decision-making processes within the household during the production of cash crops. Increased participation by women in decision-making will require an active and practical strategy which can encourage adjustments to existing traditional gender norms that recognise men as the main decision-makers at both the household and community levels.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201810.0740.v2
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: political polarization; echo-chambers; social networks; binary voter model; discussion dynamics; opinion dynamics model
Online: 17 December 2018 (10:11:31 CET)
Polarization in online social networks has gathered a significant amount of attention in the research community and in the public sphere due to stark disagreements with millions of participants in topics surrounding politics, climate, the economy and other areas where an agreement is required. There are multiple approaches to investigating the scenarios in which polarization occurs and given that polarization is not a new phenomenon but that its virality may be supported by the low cost and latency messaging offered by online social media platforms; an investigation into the intrinsic dynamics of online opinion evolution is presented for complete networks. Extending a model which utilizes the Binary Voter Model (BVM) to examine the effect of the degree of freedom for selecting contacts based upon homophily, simulations show that different opinions are reinforced for a period of time when users have a greater range of choice for association. The facility of discussion threads and groups formed upon common views further delays the rate in which a consensus can form between all members of the network. This can temporarily incubate members from interacting with those who can present an alternative opinion where a voter model would then proceed to produce a homogeneous opinion based upon pairwise interactions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201807.0563.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: technological innovation; cloud computing; compound binomial options; investment risk; uncertainty
Online: 30 July 2018 (07:40:39 CEST)
The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the timing of innovative investment in technology product life cycles using a compound binomial option with management flexibility. Considering the business cycles changes in the macroeconomic will affect consumer purchasing power. The focus is how to evaluate the optimal investment strategy and the project value. It was applied to different product stages (three stages including production innovation, manufacture innovation, and operation innovation) and factored to different risks to build a technology innovation strategy model. An aim of this study is the options premium of the best strategy timing for each innovation stage. Its application of the compound binomial options for the manufacture innovation will only be considered after the execution of the production innovation. The same condition is applied to the operation innovation, which will only be considered after the execution of the manufacture innovation. Then, this paper constructs the dynamic investment sequential decision model, assesses the feasibility of an investment strategy, and makes a decision on the appropriate project value and options premium for each stage under the possible change of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). This paper investigates the product life cycle innovation investment topic by using the compound binomial options method and will provide a more flexible strategy decision compared with other trend forecast criteria.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201806.0494.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: Aordable Care Act, Flexible Spending Accounts, Insurance Coverage, Multiple Service Plans
Online: 29 June 2018 (16:10:38 CEST)
Motivated by the theoretical model of health insurance choice with Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) presented in Cardon 2012, this study investigates the determinants of optional coverage (SSP) and flexible spending accounts (FSA) enrollment, among the privately insured in post-affordable-care-act (ACA) USA. To this end, we rely on semi-parametric bi-variate probit methods, along with a pooled cross-section of the 2015-2016 National Health Interview Surveys. As predicted by the theoretical model, we find that SSP and FSA are complement health solutions with a positive correlation. Our results emphasize that the most important trigger factors influencing the joint probability of SSP and FSA adoption include not only insurance premium cost, but also age, education, marital status, number of work hours, region of residency, citizenship status, and annual health expenditure level. We find that controlling for these latter factors, health status is not significant especially for FSA adoption. In addition, despite the fact that the relative frequency of individuals with FSA rises with increasing levels of medical expenditure, ACA restrictions on FSA tax exclusion to an annual adjusted maximum of $2600 (in 2017 $s) seems to adversely burden individuals with greater medical expenditure, thereby reducing their likelihood of FSA enrollment in post-ACA USA. Understanding these factors is very crucial to US health care market's stakeholders, including insurance companies, firms looking to design their health insurance offerings, but also policy-makers interested in providing new tailored health solutions for reducing health risks.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201805.0010.v3
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: sustainability; competitive advantage, Sassuolo tile ceramic district; Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment (LCSA); Italian ceramic industry; meso-economic level; interpretative method
Online: 13 June 2018 (09:49:25 CEST)
Talking about sustainable development refers mainly to the environmental sphere, but the concept is much broader and also takes into account the social and economic conditions. The concept of sustainability, in this sense, is linked to the compatibility between the development of economic activities, the related social phenomena, and the protection of the environment. Therefore, the ability to balance social, economic and environmental sustainability is the very meaning of the concept of sustainable development. Firms that choose to develop policies and strategies to enhance and pursue sustainable development in the medium to long term have the burden of having to quantitatively document the improvements in production processes with the aim of sustainable development. As a result, one of the biggest challenges for European industry is to introduce sustainability principles into business models leading to competitive advantage. This is particularly important in raw material and energy intensive manufacturing sectors such as the ceramic industry. The present state of knowledge lacks a comprehensive operational tool for industry to support decision-making processes geared towards sustainability. In the ceramic sector, the economic and social dimensions of the product and processes have not yet been given sufficient importance. Moreover, the traditional research on industrial districts lacks an analysis of the relations between firms and the territory with a view to sustainability. Finally, the attention of scholars in the field of economic and social sustainability, has not yet turned to the analysis of the Sassuolo district. Therefore, in this paper we introduce the Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment (LCSA), as a method that can be a suitable tool to fill this gap, because through a mathematical model it is possible to obtain the information useful for decision makers to integrate the principles of sustainability both at the microeconomic level in enterprises, and at the meso-economic level for the definition of economic policies and territorial governance. Environmental and socio-economic analysis was performed from the extraction of raw materials to the packaging of the product on different product categories manufactured by the Italian ceramic industries of the Sassuolo district (northern Italy). For the first time the LCSA model, usually applied to unitary processes, is extended to the economic and industrial activities of the entire district, extending the prospect of investigation from the enterprise and its value chain to the integrated network of district enterprises.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201805.0306.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: income distribution; cost distribution; vulnerable region; adaptation measures; Bangladesh
Online: 22 May 2018 (12:54:33 CEST)
Widespread poverty is the most serious threat and social problem that Bangladesh faces. Regional vulnerability to climate change threatens to escalate the magnitude of this poverty. It is essential that projections of poverty be made while bearing in mind the effects of climate change. The main purpose of this paper is to investigate the agrarian sub-national regional analysis of climate change vulnerability in Bangladesh under various climate change scenarios and its potential impact on poverty. This study is relevant to socio-economic research on climate change vulnerability and agriculture risk management and has the potential to contribute new insights to the complex interactions in household income and climate change risks to agricultural communities in Bangladesh and South Asia. The current study uses analysis of variance, cluster analysis, decomposition of variance and log-normal distribution to estimate the parameters of income variability that ascertain vulnerability levels and help us to understand the poverty levels that climate change could potentially incur. It is found that the income share in income sources revealed that income category shares across the various regions of Bangladesh are far from uniform. The variance decomposition of income showed that agricultural income in Mymensingh and Rangpur is the main cause of income difference. Moreover, large variance of agricultural income in the regions is induced by gross income from rice production. Additionally, constant reduction of rice yield due to climate change in Bangladesh is not such a severe problem for farmers, however, the extreme events like flood, flash flood, drought, sea level rise, and greenhouse gas emission based on RCPs could increase the poverty rates in Mymensingh, Rajshahi, Barisal, and Khulna regions that would be highly affected by unexpected yield loss due to extreme climatic events. Therefore, research and development of adaptation measures to climate change for regions where farmers are largely dependent on agricultural income is important.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201804.0314.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: urban freight transport; city logistics; decision making process; multi-actor decision support; Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis; MCDA; Analytic Hierarchy Process; AHP; Decision Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory Method; DEMATEL
Online: 24 April 2018 (09:19:37 CEST)
Urban areas are centres of business and innovation. Freight transport is indispensable for the proper functioning of any modern urban society. Urban areas can’t function without an appropriate freight transport system, due to the need to replenish stocks of food and other goods in retail shops. The complexity of the decisions concerning implementation of measures to improve the movement of goods in the city requires tools designed to support this process. The purpose of this article is to introduce the possibility of applying the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) as well as the Decision Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory Method (DEMATEL) in choosing a set of measures and in analysing in the field of distribution logistics, which will help to solve the delivery problems and streamline the cargo flows in Szczecin, in the context of sustainable development.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201804.0062.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: collaboration; leadership; push-pull technology; sustainability; transdisciplinary research; Ethiopia
Online: 5 April 2018 (04:47:49 CEST)
Transdisciplinary research approach requires that different scientists with their discipline-specific theories, concepts and methods find ways to work together with other societal players to solve a real-life problem. In order to put this into practice, Trans-disciplinary Action Research (TDR) approach was applied in this study using Push pull technology (PPT) as a boundary object. The study was conducted in Bako Tibe, Jimma arjo and Yayu Woredas (Districts) in the Oromia region of Ethiopia from August 2014 to April 2015. PPT is a biological based mechanism developed by researchers for stemborer pest control in maize. It involves inter-cropping maize with a stemborer moth-repellent silverleaf or Greenleaf Desmodium (push), and planting an attractive trap crop, Napier or Brachiaria grass (pull), around the maize crop. On farm PPT implementation was used to provide an opportunity for collaboration, interaction and learning among heterogeneous set of stakeholders comprising of researchers from Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural research and the practitioners from the ministry of agriculture and smallholder farmers/traders. The data was collected using mixed methods approach comprising of key informant interviews, Focus Group discussions, workshops, on-farm practical demonstrations and participant observations. The findings shows that; collaborative leadership provides a chance for the stakeholders to participate in the technology learning and decision making by enabling them to jointly contribute skills towards development, refinement and adaptation of PPT. In situations where there are conflicts, they are embraced and become opportunities for in-depth learning, finding solutions and adaptation rather than being sources of contradictions or misunderstandings. Leadership roles taken by farmers play a key role in terms of ability to reflect on their own practices and drawing on scientific explanations from researchers. It also enables them take lead in new technology implementation and information sharing in free and easy manner with fellow farmers and other stakeholders. Although PPT perennial nature of cropping provides opportunities for continuous stakeholder interaction and learning, it requires a personally committed leadership and formal institutional engagements for the sustainability of its activities spanning over several cropping seasons. Market forces and the involvement of private sector players also has a role to achieve this as shown from the involvement of individual farmers and traders in Desmodium and Brachiaria seed production, collection and distribution.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201709.0111.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: airline service quality; passenger satisfaction; non-parametric analysis; Type-2 Fuzzy Set; Fuzzy TOPSIS
Online: 22 September 2017 (16:34:11 CEST)
This paper focuses on evaluating airline service quality from the perspective of passengers view. Until now a lot of researches has performed in airline service quality evaluation in the world but a little research has been conducted in Iran, yet. In this research a framework for measuring airline service quality in Iran is proposed. After reviewing airline service quality criteria, SSQAI model was selected because of its comprehensiveness in covering airline service quality dimensions. SSQAI questionnaire items were redesigned to adopt with Iranian airlines requirements and environmental circumstances in the Iran's economic and cultural context. This study includes fuzzy decision-making theory, considering the possible fuzzy subjective judgment of the evaluators during airline service quality evaluation. Fuzzy TOPSIS have been applied for ranking airlines service quality performances. Three major Iranian airlines which have the most passenger transfer volumes in domestic and foreign flights, were chosen for evaluation in this research. Results demonstrated Mahan airline has got the best service quality performance rank in gaining passengers' satisfaction with delivery of high quality services to its passengers, among the three major Iranian airlines. IranAir and Aseman airlines placed in the second and third rank, respectively, according to passenger's evaluation.Statistical analysis have been used in analyzing passenger responses. Due to abnormality of data, Non-parametric tests were applied. To demonstrate airline ranks in every criterion separately, Friedman test was performed. Variance analysis and Tukey test were applied to study the influence of increasing in age and educational level of passengers' on degree of their satisfaction from airline's service quality. Results showed that age has not significant relation with passenger satisfaction of airlines, however increasing in educational level demonstrated a negative impact on passengers' satisfaction from airline's service quality.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201708.0053.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: dairy farming; sustainability; organic farming; technology acceptance model; structural equation modeling
Online: 14 August 2017 (06:27:08 CEST)
The goal of the study was to assess the farmers’ acceptance of three sustainable production strategies, namely ‘Agro-forestry’, ‘Alternative protein source’ and ‘Prolonged maternal feeding’. Data on the acceptance of these strategies were collected by a survey of dairy farmers in six EU countries (AT, BE, DK, FI, IT, UK). An extended version of the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) was applied by means of Structural Equation Modelling to testing various hypotheses on attitudes and intentions of dairy farmers towards these novel production strategies, as well as the influence of organic practices and collaborative behaviours along the supply chain. We found that the most preferred strategy - across all countries - was soy substitution by alternative protein sources. We also found that the intention to adopt a sustainable production strategy may derive from the influence of opinions (and behaviours) of relevant others, showing the role of interactions among farmers and other stakeholders in the adoption of innovations. Finally, the perceived usefulness of all investigated strategies is higher for organic farmers, while collaborative patterns reduce the impact of subjective norm on usefulness and overall acceptance. Our findings should encourage policy makers to consider the important role of supply chain management practices, including collaboration, to enhance the sustainability of dairy farming systems.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201703.0035.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: aviation automation; automation surprise; cognition; complacency; bias
Online: 6 March 2017 (17:59:48 CET)
Automation surprises in aviation continue to be a significant safety concern and the community’s search for effective strategies to mitigate them are ongoing. The literature has offered two fundamentally divergent directions, based on different ideas about the nature of cognition and collaboration with automation. In this paper, we report the results of a field study that empirically compared and contrasted two models of automation surprises: a normative individual-cognition model and a sensemaking model based on distributed cognition. Our data prove a good fit for the sense-making model. This finding is relevant for aviation safety, since our understanding of the cognitive processes that govern the human interaction with automation drives what we need to do to reduce the frequency of automation-induced events.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201609.0030.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Decision Sciences Keywords: carbon emissions reduction; technology spillover; game theory; supply chain coordination
Online: 8 September 2016 (11:39:40 CEST)
We study a two-echelon supply chain made up of a supplier and a manufacturer, both of which can reduce their component/product carbon emissions. With the vertical technology spillovers, we explore the optimal decisions of centralized and decentralized supply chains with price dependent demand and propose coordination strategy for the decentralized supply chain. Considering the cost contraction effectiveness of the technology spillovers, the centralized and decentralized game theoretic models of a two-echelon supply chain are developed to investigate optimal decisions of pricing and carbon emissions reduction. Through a systematic comparison and numerical analysis, we show that the profits of both players and the entire supply chain improve with the effect of technology spillovers increasing. Carbon emissions reduction will be taken by various protective measures so that the supplier and the manufacturer who do not innovate can hardly share the results of innovating via the “free-riding” methods when the technology spillover is relatively small. We also propose a revenue-cost sharing contract through bargaining to enhance the performance of the decentralized supply chain.