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2022 ◽  
Vol 22 (1) ◽  
Author(s):  
Silondile Luthuli ◽  
Lyn Haskins ◽  
Sphindile Mapumulo ◽  
Christiane Horwood

Abstract Background The child support grant (CSG) is the largest unconditional cash transfer program in Africa and aims to alleviate poverty and improve child health and nutrition in low-income families in South Africa. Among informal working women, the CSG is an important source of income after childbirth when informal workers are unable to work, but reports suggest that women experience delays in accessing the CSG. We explore experiences and challenges of accessing the CSG among informal workers in Durban, South Africa. Methods We undertook a longitudinal mixed-methods cohort study. Women informal workers were recruited during pregnancy and followed-up for up to one year after the baby was born. Quantitative questionnaires and semi-structured in-depth interviews were used to collect data about women’s plans for applying for the CSG, the application process, use of the CSG in the household, and household food insecurity. Interviews were conducted in IsiZulu by experienced researchers. Descriptive analysis of quantitative data used SPSS v26, and framework analysis using NVIVO v12.3 was used for qualitative analysis. Results Twenty-four informal working women were enrolled. The CSG received for older children was reported as an important and reliable source of income for mothers after childbirth. However, delays receiving the CSG for the new baby meant this support was unavailable to first-time mothers. The complex application process for the CSG required mothers to travel to various government departments to complete the required documentation, often taking the baby with them. This was costly and time-consuming for mothers who were already vulnerable, and led to delays in obtaining CSG funds. Many women experienced moderate or severe food insecurity before and after the baby was born. As a result, some mothers had to return to work earlier than planned, disrupting childcare and breastfeeding. Conclusions Cash transfer programmes can effectively support low income households and improve outcomes for mothers and children. In South Africa there is a need for innovative approaches to streamline CSG applications, so women can access the funds immediately post-delivery to fill a resource gap and provide support at a vulnerable time for mothers and their children.


2022 ◽  
Vol 12 (2) ◽  
pp. 889
Author(s):  
Marek Milanowski ◽  
Alaa Subr ◽  
Stanisław Parafiniuk

The use of worn-out agricultural nozzles in pesticide application has a negative effect on the efficiency and cost of the application process. It also has an effect on environmental pollution due to an excessive amount of pesticide being applied when spraying with worn-out nozzles. In this paper, the resistance to wear of three different internal design hydraulic nozzles was ascertained. Changes in the flow rate and spray distribution as a result of this wear were also investigated. The wear test was done inside a closed system, and it was accelerated using an abrasive material to generate 100 h of wear. The tested nozzles were the Turbo TeeJet (TT)-twin chambered, Turbo Twinjet (TTj60)-dual outlet, and Drift Guard (DG)-pre-orifice. Wear rate, flow rate, and the virtual coefficient of variation (CVv) were measured at different wear intervals. The results showed that the TTj60 type was the most resistant to wear, followed by the TT type and DG. The latter two types showed an increase in the flow rate only in the first 45 h of wear. Virtual coefficient of variation (CVv) values were less than 10% after finishing the test (after 100 h of wear) for the three types of nozzles, which are acceptable values according to International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 16122-2, 2015.


2022 ◽  
Vol 5 (1) ◽  
pp. 19-25
Author(s):  
Joy Waiharo ◽  
Caroline Kithinji ◽  
Mercy Mwakisha ◽  
Elizabeth Anne Bukusi

Inadequate training in matters of ethics renders health care providers unprepared for dilemmas faced in public health, research, and clinical practice. Certificate course training offer opportunities to gain more knowledge and skills on all matter ethics. Over the past decade, the increase in research activities in Kenya has not been proportionate to training in ethics. The centre of Biomedical Ethics and Culture (CBEC), Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) Bioethics training Initiative (CK-BTI) is a Forgaty funded program for building capacity in research ethics for Kenya and Pakistan. This paper evaluates the characteristics of participants that attended the CK-BTI certificate level courses in Kenya between 2017 to 2021. This data was analysed for this paper and utilized information from the training application process. Between November 2017 and July 2021, a total of 1,359 applications were received and 457 (33.6%) trained. The target countries were Kenya and Pakistan but interest was drawn from Tanzania, Uganda, Nigeria, and Zambia. The continued interest in the certificate level ethics courses may imply a need to increase the number of ethics training offered within the East African region.


2022 ◽  
Vol 6 (1) ◽  
pp. 23
Author(s):  
Salmabanu Luhar ◽  
Ismail Luhar ◽  
Faiz Uddin Ahmed Shaikh

The development of cracks, owing to a relatively lower tensile strength of concrete, diverse loading, and environmental factors driving the deterioration of structures, is an inescapable key concern for engineers. Reparation and maintenance operations are thus extremely important to prevent cracks from spreading and mitigating the lifetime of structures. However, ease of access to the cracked zone may be challenging, and it also needs funds and manual power. Hence, autonomous sealing of cracks employing microorganisms into the concrete sans manual intervention is a promising solution to the dilemma of the sustainable improvement of concrete. ‘Ureolytic bacteria’, key organism species in rumen-producing ‘urease’ enzymes such as Bacillus pasteurii or subtilis—when induced—are capable of producing calcium carbonate precipitations into the concrete. As their cell wall is anionic, CaCO3 accumulation on their surface is extensive, and the whole cell, therefore, becomes crystalline and ultimately plugs pores and cracks. This natural induction technique is an environmentally friendly method that researchers are studying intensively. This manuscript reviews the application process of bacterial healing to manufacture autonomous self-healing bacterial concrete. Additionally, it provides a brief review of diverse attributes of this novel concrete which demonstrate the variations with the auto-addition of different bacteria, along with an evaluation of crack healing as a result of the addition of these bacteria directly into concrete or after encapsulation in a protective shell. Comparative assessment techniques for autonomous, bio-based self-healing are also discussed, accompanied by progress, potential, modes of application of this technique, and its resultant benefits in the context of strength and durability. Imperatives for quantitative sustainability assessment and industrial adoption are identified, along with the sealing of artificially cracked cement mortar with sand as a filling material in given spaces, as well as urea and CaCl2 medium treatment with Bacillus pasteurii and Sporosarcina bacteria. The assessment of the impact on the compressive strength and rigidity of cement mortar cubes after the addition of bacteria into the mix is also considered. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) images on the function of bacteria in mineral precipitation that is microbiologically induced are also reviewed. Lastly, future research scope and present gaps are recognised and discussed.


Author(s):  
Ross Brown ◽  
José M. Liñares-Zegarra ◽  
John O.S. Wilson

AbstractIn this paper, we investigate whether innovative small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are more likely to be discouraged from applying for external finance than non-innovators. These so-called discouraged borrowers are credit worthy SMEs who choose not to apply for external finance despite the fact that this is needed. We find that SMEs undertaking pure product and joint product and process innovation have a significantly higher incidence of borrower discouragement than non-innovative counterparts. Moreover, radical and incremental product innovators are more likely to be discouraged relative to non-innovative counterparts. Innovative activity can increase borrower discouragement for a myriad of reasons including fear of rejection, reluctance to take on additional risk, negative perceptions of the funding application process and perceived negative economic conditions. Overall, our results suggest a need for targeted policy interventions in order to alleviate borrower discouragement within innovative SMEs, as well as a closer alignment between innovation and SME finance policy.


2022 ◽  
Vol 2022 ◽  
pp. 1-7
Author(s):  
Li Chen ◽  
Meiling Miao

With the continuous development of China’s cultural industry, people’s health has become one of the topics of the highest concern. Therefore, all the application models of physical health test data in the actual analysis have become the current research focus and trend direction of healthy constitution. This paper summarizes the significant problems in the analysis of physical health test data, through the comprehensive analysis and investigation of physical health test data, combined with the measurement of the test indicators, through the analysis and processing system of youth physical health data, the use process of national youth group physical health standard data management software, and decision tree intelligent algorithm in physical health. The research steps of test data analysis and application model summarize the application characteristics of physical health test data in the application process. Based on this, a decision tree intelligent algorithm is proposed, and the corresponding functions and optimization formulas of the algorithm are substituted. In the process of actual sample checking calculation, each weight range and corresponding errors are inferred and analyzed by combining examples. This paper summarizes the application model and optimization model of health test data analysis based on decision tree intelligent algorithm. Through the repeated test of the research data, the feasible area and application scope of the algorithm are obtained, and the practical optimization scheme and application ideas under the algorithm are obtained.


2022 ◽  
Vol 2022 ◽  
pp. 1-10
Author(s):  
Jue Wang ◽  
Kaihua Liang

One advantage of an adaptive learning system is the ability to personalize learning to the needs of individual users. Realizing this personalization requires first a precise diagnosis of individual users’ relevant attributes and characteristics and the provision of adaptability-enabling resources and pathways for feedback. In this paper, a preconcept system is constructed to diagnose users' cognitive status of specific learning content, including learning progress, specific preconcept viewpoint, preconcept source, and learning disability. The “Force and Movement” topic from junior high school physics is used as a case study to describe the method for constructing a preconception system. Based on the preconception system, a method and application process for diagnosing user cognition is introduced. This diagnosis method is used in three ways: firstly, as a diagnostic dimension for an adaptive learning system, improving the ability of highly-adaptive learning systems to support learning activities, such as through visualization of the cognition states of students; secondly, for an attribution analysis of preconceptions to provide a basis for adaptive learning organizations; and finally, for predicting the obstacles users may face in the learning process, in order to provide a basis for adaptive learning pathways.


2022 ◽  
Vol ahead-of-print (ahead-of-print) ◽  
Author(s):  
Jenni Jones ◽  
Helen A. Smith

PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to evaluate two coaching and mentoring programmes focused on the ever-increasingly important aim of enhancing the chances of professional level employment for undergraduate students, at two UK universities. In addition, to offer recommendations to enhance coaching and mentoring success within higher education (HE).Design/methodology/approachTwo similar programmes are compared; the first study is a coaching programme delivered in two phases involving over 1,500 students within the business school. The second study is a mentoring programme involving over 250 students over a ten-year period within the business school at a different institution.FindingsThe two programmes have been compared against the key success criteria from the literature, endorsed by coaching and mentoring experts. The results highlight the importance of integrating with other initiatives, senior management commitment, budget, an application process, clear matching process, trained coaches and mentors, induction for both parties, supportive material, ongoing supervision and robust evaluation and record keeping.Research limitations/implicationsThe research focuses on two similar institutions, with comparable student demographics. It would have been useful to dig deeper into the effect of the diverse characteristics of coach/mentor and coachee/mentee on the effectiveness of their relationships. In addition, to test the assumptions and recommendations beyond these two institutions, and to validate the reach and application of these best practice recommendations further afield.Practical implicationsThe results identify a number of best practice recommendations to guide HE institutions when offering coaching and mentoring interventions to support career progression of their students.Originality/valueThere are limited comparison studies between universities with undergraduate career-related coaching and mentoring programmes and limited research offering best practice recommendations for coaching and mentoring programmes in HE. The top ten factors offered here to take away will add value to those thinking of running similar programmes within HE.


Author(s):  
Fei Wu ◽  
Ting Li ◽  
Fucai Luo ◽  
Shulin Wu ◽  
Chuanqi Xiao

This paper studies the problems of load balancing and flow control in data center network, and analyzes several common flow control schemes in data center intelligent network and their existing problems. On this basis, the network traffic control problem is modeled with the goal of deep reinforcement learning strategy optimization, and an intelligent network traffic control method based on deep reinforcement learning is proposed. At the same time, for the flow control order problem in deep reinforcement learning algorithm, a flow scheduling priority algorithm is proposed innovatively. According to the decision output, the corresponding flow control and control are carried out, so as to realize the load balance of the network. Finally, experiments show, the network traffic bandwidth loss rate of the proposed intelligent network traffic control method is low. Under the condition of random 60 traffic density, the average bisection bandwidth obtained by the proposed intelligent network traffic control method is 4.0mbps and the control error rate is 2.25%. The intelligent network traffic control method based on deep reinforcement learning has high practicability in the practical application process, and fully meets the research requirements.


Author(s):  
Zhidan Qin

The paper combines BP neural network to optimize the control system of e-commerce packaging and reverse logistics inventory. Through improving the hardware configuration structure of the system, the system can be improved and the operation effect of the system can be improved. The software flow and operation algorithm of the storage control system of e-commerce packaging recycling reverse logistics are optimized step by step, and the logistics is delivered by following the vehicle on the spot and visiting the logistics The distribution personnel collect the relevant data and data in the process of logistics and transportation, draw the reverse logistics business flow chart, point out the situation of reverse logistics before and after the goods distribution and distribution due to the cancellation of orders or transactions by customers, and the application for return of goods after the transaction. Meanwhile, it points out that the sales return operation site in the reverse logistics management process is chaotic and not formed the clear business process specification and other problems can effectively control the reverse logistics inventory of e-commerce packaging recovery. Finally, the experiment proves that the e-commerce packaging recycling reverse logistics inventory control system is more practical in the practical application process, and fully meets the research requirements.


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