relative importance
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2022 ◽  
Vol ahead-of-print (ahead-of-print) ◽  
Author(s):  
Archana Shrivastava ◽  
Ashish Shrivastava

Purpose This study aims to investigate the attributes of the online programme that are considered and compute their relative importance in the purchase decision. This study aims to identify the most lucrative bundling of these attributes and their levels that can be used by online education companies to craft their product design strategy to attract customers with the most attractive offering. Design/methodology/approach This research paper endeavours to identify the attributes of online education, which customers consider for making a purchase decision. Exploratory factor analysis followed by confirmatory factor analysis was used to identify the key attributes of online education programmes. This paper uses the conjoint analysis technique to identify the most preferred bundling of attributes, which online education companies can package to attract customers. Findings Based on various attributes and their respective levels, it is evident the most lucrative design for attracting customers to buy online education programmes is to provide certification from a reputed international university, which requires an investment to the tune of 3,000–5,000. The duration of four weeks with asynchronous pedagogy and access to course material vial uniform resource locator (URL) is a preferred feature. Access via a mobile application is more preferred over Web access. A phone application is known to be optimised, and most people are using mobile phones to access the internet. Online certification or degrees that are considered as valid employment qualifications were most preferred over other reasons. Originality/value There is a dearth of studies on massive open online courses (MOOCs) from a product design perspective. There is a gap in the context of the features to be included in the MOOCs package so that the customer can find more value in it, and the companies can benefit by expanding their customer base. The research question which this study endeavours to explore is what attributes consumers of MOOCs consider when making a purchase decision. This study will also find the relative importance of these attributes.


2022 ◽  
Author(s):  
Meiyi Hou ◽  
Youmin Tang ◽  
Wansuo Duan ◽  
Zheqi Shen

Abstract This paper investigates the optimal observational array for improving the prediction of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) by exploring sensitive areas for target observations of two types of El Niño events in the whole Pacific. A target observation method based on the particle filter and pre-industrial control runs from six coupled model outputs in Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) experiments are used to quantify the relative importance of the initial accuracy of sea surface temperature (SST) in different Pacific areas. The initial accuracy of the tropical Pacific, subtropical Pacific, and extratropical Pacific can all exert influences on both types of El Niño predictions. The relative importance of different areas changes along with different lead times of predictions. Tropical Pacific observations are crucial in decreasing the root mean square error of predictions of all lead times. Subtropical and extratropical observations play an important role in decreasing the prediction uncertainty, especially when the prediction is made before and throughout boreal spring. To consider different El Niño types and different start months for predictions, a quantitative frequency method based on frequency distribution is applied to determine the optimal observations of ENSO predictions. The final optimal observational array contains 31 grid points, including 21 grid points in the equatorial Pacific and 10 grid points in the north Pacific, suggesting the importance of the initial SST conditions for ENSO predictions not only in the tropical Pacific but also in the area outside the tropics. Furthermore, the predictions made by assimilating SST in sensitive areas have better prediction skills in the verification experiment, which can indicate the validity of the optimal observational array designed in this study.


2022 ◽  
Vol 13 (1) ◽  
Author(s):  
Balint Stewart ◽  
Nicole Gruenheit ◽  
Amy Baldwin ◽  
Rex Chisholm ◽  
Daniel Rozen ◽  
...  

AbstractNatural selection should favour generalist predators that outperform specialists across all prey types. Two genetic solutions could explain why intraspecific variation in predatory performance is, nonetheless, widespread: mutations beneficial on one prey type are costly on another (antagonistic pleiotropy), or mutational effects are prey-specific, which weakens selection, allowing variation to persist (relaxed selection). To understand the relative importance of these alternatives, we characterised natural variation in predatory performance in the microbial predator Dictyostelium discoideum. We found widespread nontransitive differences among strains in predatory success across different bacterial prey, which can facilitate stain coexistence in multi-prey environments. To understand the genetic basis, we developed methods for high throughput experimental evolution on different prey (REMI-seq). Most mutations (~77%) had prey-specific effects, with very few (~4%) showing antagonistic pleiotropy. This highlights the potential for prey-specific effects to dilute selection, which would inhibit the purging of variation and prevent the emergence of an optimal generalist predator.


Author(s):  
Sai Gong ◽  
Bang Feng ◽  
Si-Peng Jian ◽  
Geng Shen Wang ◽  
Zai-Wei Ge ◽  
...  

Altitude and season represent two important environmental gradients that shape the structure of biome, including the heterogeneity of EcM fungi. Previous studies have separately considered the influences of altitude and season on EcM fungal communities, but the relative importance of altitude and season is still unknown.


2022 ◽  
Author(s):  
Alexander Strang ◽  
William Huffmyer ◽  
Hilary Rollins ◽  
Karen C. Abbott ◽  
Peter J. Thomas

While noise is an important factor in biology, biological processes often involve multiple noise sources, whose relative importance can be unclear. Here we develop tools that quantify the importance of noise sources in a network based on their contributions to variability in a quantity of interest. We generalize the edge importance measures proposed by Schmidt and Thomas [1] for first-order reaction networks whose steady-state variance is a linear combination of variance produced by each directed edge. We show that the same additive property extends to a general family of stochastic processes subject to a set of linearity assumptions, whether in discrete or continuous state or time. Our analysis applies to both expanding and contracting populations, as well as populations obeying a martingale (“wandering”) at long times. We show that the original Schmidt-Thomas edge importance measure is a special case of our more general measure, and is recovered when the model satisfies a conservation constraint


Oecologia ◽  
2022 ◽  
Author(s):  
Hagen M. O’Neill ◽  
Sean D. Twiss ◽  
Philip A. Stephens ◽  
Tom H. E. Mason ◽  
Nils Ryrholm ◽  
...  

AbstractEcosystem engineers affect other organisms by creating, maintaining or modifying habitats, potentially supporting species of conservation concern. However, it is important to consider these interactions alongside non-engineering trophic pathways. We investigated the relative importance of trophic and non-trophic effects of an ecosystem engineer, red deer, on a locally rare moth, the transparent burnet (Zygaena purpuralis). This species requires specific microhabitat conditions, including the foodplant, thyme, and bare soil for egg-laying. The relative importance of grazing (i.e., trophic effect of modifying microhabitat) and trampling (i.e., non-trophic effect of exposing bare soil) by red deer on transparent burnet abundance is unknown. We tested for these effects using a novel method of placing pheromone-baited funnel traps in the field. Imago abundance throughout the flight season was related to plant composition, diversity and structure at various scales around each trap. Indirect effects of red deer activity were accounted for by testing red deer pellet and trail presence against imago abundance. Imago abundance was positively associated with thyme and plant diversity, whilst negatively associated with velvet grass and heather species cover. The presence of red deer pellets and trails were positively associated with imago abundance. The use of these sites by red deer aids the transparent burnet population via appropriate levels of grazing and the provision of a key habitat condition, bare soil, in the form of deer trails. This study shows that understanding how both trophic and non-trophic interactions affect the abundance of a species provides valuable insights regarding conservation objectives.


2022 ◽  
Vol 131 (1) ◽  
pp. 013303
Author(s):  
Pierre-Yves C. R. Taunay ◽  
Christopher J. Wordingham ◽  
Edgar Y. Choueiri

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