City, University of London
  • London, London, United Kingdom
Recent publications
Background Caring for our patients while taking care of our own safety as well as theirs is a major concern during the current pandemic. Therefore, many societies developed guidance documents to educate clinicians about the required precautions. This study aims to assess personal protective equipment (PPE) usage, hand hygiene practice and infection control training among phoniatricians and otolaryngologists during the pandemic. An online survey was administered during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in June 2020. Data collected included PPE availability, infection control training, adopted infection control precautions, hand hygiene practice, and use of different PPE elements as well as adherence to its use during potential aerosol generating procedures. Results Based on their country of residences, eligible 154 participants were grouped into 4 groups and their responses were compared. Conclusion Following the suggested recommendations, while adequate for some precautions, was still not satisfactory. Certain defects that are specific to particular groups had also been identified.
Schizophrenia, a debilitating disorder with typical manifestation of clinical symptoms in early adulthood, is characterized by cognitive impairments in executive processes such as in working memory (WM). However, there is a rare case of individuals with early-onset schizophrenia (EOS) starting before their 18th birthday, while WM and its neural substrates are still undergoing maturation. Using the WM n-back task with functional magnetic resonance imaging, we assessed the functional neurodevelopment of WM in adolescents with EOS and age- and gender-matched typically developing controls. Participants underwent neuroimaging in the same scanner twice, once at age 17 and at 21 (mean interscan interval = 4.3 years). General linear model analysis was performed to explore WM neurodevelopmental changes within and between groups. Psychopathological scores were entered in multiple regressions to detect brain regions whose longitudinal functional change was predicted by baseline symptoms in EOS. WM neurodevelopment was characterized by widespread functional reductions in frontotemporal and cingulate brain areas in patients and controls. No between-group differences were found in the trajectory of WM change. Baseline symptom scores predicted functional neurodevelopmental changes in frontal, cingulate, parietal, occipital, and cerebellar areas. The adolescent brain undergoes developmental processes such as synaptic pruning, which may underlie the refinement WM of network. Prefrontal and parietooccipital activity reduction is affected by clinical presentation of symptoms. Using longitudinal neuroimaging methods in a rare diagnostic sample of patients with EOS may help the advancement of neurodevelopmental biomarkers intended as pharmacological targets to tackle WM impairment.
  • Jason DykesJason Dykes
  • Alfie Abdul-RahmanAlfie Abdul-Rahman
  • Daniel ArchambaultDaniel Archambault
  • [...]
  • Kai XuKai Xu
We report on an ongoing collaboration between epidemiological modellers and visualization researchers by documenting and reflecting upon knowledge constructs—a series of ideas, approaches and methods taken from existing visualization research and practice—deployed and developed to support modelling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Structured independent commentary on these efforts is synthesized through iterative reflection to develop: evidence of the effectiveness and value of visualization in this context; open problems upon which the research communities may focus; guidance for future activity of this type and recommendations to safeguard the achievements and promote, advance, secure and prepare for future collaborations of this kind. In describing and comparing a series of related projects that were undertaken in unprecedented conditions, our hope is that this unique report, and its rich interactive supplementary materials, will guide the scientific community in embracing visualization in its observation, analysis and modelling of data as well as in disseminating findings. Equally we hope to encourage the visualization community to engage with impactful science in addressing its emerging data challenges. If we are successful, this showcase of activity may stimulate mutually beneficial engagement between communities with complementary expertise to address problems of significance in epidemiology and beyond. See . This article is part of the theme issue ‘Technical challenges of modelling real-life epidemics and examples of overcoming these’.
The emission peak/carbon neutrality calls for significantly improved coal-fired power plants. Sustainability of the power plants is critical to meeting the net zero targets in 2050/2060. In this context, it is necessary to investigate the integration and conversion of the supercritical carbon dioxide coal-fired power cycle and the supercritical carbon dioxide energy storage cycle. In this work, the thermodynamic model and performance criteria are firstly presented. After comparison of the two cycles, a three-step strategy for the development of the power cycle is proposed and assessed. First step: when coal still plays an important role as a main energy resource, the integrated tri-compression coal-fired supercritical compressed carbon dioxide energy storage cycle has the highest round-trip efficiency of 56.37%. Second step: with the challenge in utilization of coal energy, a trade-off among the performance criteria must be struck in the integrated cycle with various heat sources. Third step: the adiabatic supercritical compressed carbon dioxide energy storage cycle is proposed, and a high round-trip efficiency of 72.34% is achieved in the split expansion cycle. The present research provides not only a new prospect of the conventional power plants but also design guidance for the supercritical carbon dioxide energy storage cycle.
A new and easy-to-fabricate strain sensor has been developed, based on fiber Bragg grating (FBG) technology embedded into a thermoplastic polyurethane filament using a 3-dimensional (3D) printer. Taking advantage of the flexibility and elastic properties of the thermoplastic polyurethane material, the embedding of the FBG provides durable protection with enhanced flexibility and sensitivity, as compared to the use of a bare FBG. Results of an evaluation of its performance have shown that the FBG sensors embedded in this way can be applied effectively in the measurement of strain, with an average wavelength responsivity of 0.013 5 nm/cm of displacement for tensile strain and −0.014 2 nm/cm for compressive strain, both showing a linearity value of up to 99%. Furthermore, such an embedded FBG-based strain sensor has a sensitivity of ∼1.74 times greater than that of a bare FBG used for strain measurement and is well protected and suitable for in-the-field use. It is also observed that the thermoplastic polyurethane based (TPU-based) FBG strain sensor carries a sensitivity value of ∼2.05 times higher than that of the polylactic acid based (PLA-based) FBG strain sensor proving that TPU material can be made as the material of choice as a “sensing” pad for the FBG.
Overweight and obesity continue to increase globally. In England, as in many other countries, this disproportionately affects people who experience socioeconomic deprivation. One factor blamed for inequalities in obesity is unhealthy food provisioning environments (FPEs), leading to a focus on policies and interventions to change FPEs. This paper aims to provide insights into how FPE policies could more effectively tackle inequalities in obesity by addressing a key research gap: how the structural contexts in which people live their lives influence their interaction with their FPEs. It aims to understand how low-income families engage with FPEs through in-depth focused ethnographic research with 60 parents across three locations in England: Great Yarmouth, Stoke-on-Trent, and the London Borough of Lewisham. Analysis was guided by sociological perspectives. FPEs simultaneously push low-income families towards unhealthy products while supporting multiple other family needs, such as social wellbeing. FPE policies and interventions to address obesity must acknowledge this challenge and consider not just the makeup of FPEs themselves but how various structural contexts shape how people come to use them.
  • Thomas FurseThomas Furse
Political economy impacts and influences a state's military strategy. This article focuses on how the integration of the US political economy in the Indo-Pacific drives US Navy officers and the broader national security state to establish the Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP). Investigating the strategic thought of senior Naval officers shows that they think far beyond military threats and engage with the United States and the Indo-Pacific political economy. Even as the US Navy competes with China's military, its FOIP strategy benefits corporate elites in both China and the US, whose cooperation creates a mutually supportive economic relationship. This argument leads to the finding that the US hegemony in the region is a strategy that avoids a bipolar 'New Cold War' of an entirely de-coupled US and China. The FOIP supported by the US Navy continues to integrate China into regional and global economies, even as it attempts to push back against China by gathering allies and partners. The emphasis on international political economy highlights how the region is a network of 'patchwork' relations, where states rely on one another for economic prosperity. Through investigating speeches and strategic papers from US Naval officials, this paper demonstrates how the US competes and cooperates with China in the context of relations in the region that are in constant flux.
Food insecurity and diet-related diseases do not only have detrimental effects to human health, but are also underpinned by food systems that are environmentally unsustainable and culturally disconnected. Ensuring access to a healthy, affordable, and sustainable diet is one of the greatest challenges facing many low- and middle-income countries such as South Africa. These challenges in accessing a diverse diet often persist despite biocultural richness. For example, South Africa is globally recognised for its rich biodiversity, an ecologically unrivalled coastline, and a rich body of traditional knowledge amongst wild-food users. In this paper, we explore the potential that coastal wild foods as neglected and underutilised species (NUS) can play in local food systems in South Africa’s Western Cape Province. Following a previously established transformation lab (T-Lab) method, here we report the observations and outcomes emerging from a two-day workshop held in May 2019 with a group of 40 actors involved in the local food system in diverse ways. Farmers, small-scale fishers, indigenous knowledge holders, representatives from non-profit organisations, chefs, bartenders, academics, activists, conservationists, and government officials were brought together with the aim of strengthening an emerging coalition of coastal wild food actors. Findings highlighted the existence of a fledgling economy for coastal wild foods, driven by high-end chefs. The T-Lab was essentially a tool of knowledge co-production around food system transformation and helped to surface deeply embedded issues on land, race, history, and culture that warrant engagement if a better food system is to emerge. In a country that is drought prone and vulnerable to climate change, a more resilient and sustainable food system is a necessity. But defining alternative governance systems to shift towards a healthier, more sustainable, and more equitable food system will require concerted effort across all stakeholders.
The increase in cash holdings held by non-financial corporations in emerging economies in general, and Latin American in particular, has received less attention vis-à-vis their advanced economies’ peers. Considering that cash holdings contain not only cash but also short-term, interest-bearing assets, we test whether the pursuit of financial revenues was one motive behind the decision to hold this type of asset as it is claimed in analyses of corporate financialization. We use a panel of listed non-financial firms from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and Peru between 1998 and 2018 to test this hypothesis. Although we find supporting statistical evidence in favor of this relation, this is mostly explained by Brazil and results point towards a low economic significance.
Introduction: The Radiography Research Ethics Standards for Europe (RRESFE) project aimed to provide a cross-sectional view of the current state of radiography research ethics across Europe. This included investigating education and training in research ethics, and identifying the key challenges and potential improvements associated with using existing research ethics frameworks. Methods: This cross-sectional online survey targeting radiography researchers in Europe was conducted between April 26 and July 12, 2021. Descriptive and analytical statistics were used to identify research ethics education and training trends. Content analysis of qualitative responses was employed to identify significant challenges and proposed improvements in research ethics frameworks of practice. Results: There were 232 responses received across 33 European countries. Most (n ¼ 132; 57%) respondents had received some research ethics training; however, fewer participants had received training on safeguarding vulnerable patients (n ¼ 72; 38%), diversity and inclusivity (n ¼ 62; 33%), or research with healthy volunteers (n ¼ 60; 32%). Training was associated with a greater perceived importance of the need for research ethics review (p ¼ 0.031) and with the establishment of EQF Level 6 training (p ¼ 0.038). The proportion of formally trained researchers also varied by region (p ¼ <0.001). Time-toethics-approval was noted as the biggest challenge for professionals making research ethics applications. Conclusion: Early and universal integration of research-oriented teaching within the radiography education framework which emphasises research ethics is recommended. Additionally, study findings suggest research ethics committee application and approval processes could be further simplified and streamlined. Implications for practice: The survey contributes to a growing body of knowledge surrounding the importance of education and training in research ethics for assuring a high standard of research outputs
Carol Tulloch is an author, curator, maker and academic, and Professor of Dress, Diaspora and Transnationalism at the University of the Arts in London. She grew up in Doncaster in the North of England and studied BA Fashion and Textile Design at Ravensbourne College Design and Communication, and MA History of Design at the Royal College of Art and Victoria and Albert Museum. She is known for her innovative work on heritage, personal archives, style narratives and auto/biography, and her books include Black Style (2004) and The Birth of Cool: Style Narratives of the African Diaspora (2016). She has curated and co-curated a wide range of exhibitions, including Grow Up! Advice and the Teenage Girl (The Women’s Library, 2002); The March of the Women: Suffragettes and the State (National Archives, 2003); Picture This: Representations of Black People in Product Promotion (Archives and Museum of Black Heritage, 2002); Black British Style (V&A, 2004 ); and Rock Against Racism (Autograph, 2015). In this interview, conducted online in summer 2021, she talks to Jo Littler about her work and the contexts and cultures it emerged out of.
We examine the problem of selling an object to a stream of potential buyers with independent private values and participation costs. If the object can be resold in the future, and resellers can make posted price offers, the original seller may prefer to deal with potential buyers sequentially instead of holding an auction. The reason is that resale opportunities compress the dispersion of buyers’ willingness to pay for the object, which lowers the surplus each buyer expects to receive in the auction. This effect may reduce participation in the initial auction to just one buyer, in which case the seller obtains zero revenue. We show that a simple form of sequential mechanism allows the seller to extract positive revenue, and becomes approximately optimal if the resale market is large. Our finding contrasts with the result that sellers usually prefer auctions when resale is not allowed (see Bulow and Klemperer in Am Econ Rev 99(4):1544–1575, 2009).
In heart failure (HF), increased physical activity is associated with improved quality of life, reduced hospitalisation, and increased longevity and is an important aim of treatment. However, physical activity levels in individuals living with HF are typically extremely low. This qualitative study with one-to-one interviews systematically explores perceived clinical, environmental, and psychosocial barriers and enablers in older adults (≥70 years old) living with HF. Semi-structured interviews (N = 16) based on the Theoretical Domains Framework elicited 39 belief statements describing the barriers and enablers to physical activity. Theoretical domains containing these beliefs and corresponding constructs that were both pervasive and common were deemed most relevant. These were: concerns about physical activity (Beliefs about Consequences), self-efficacy (Beliefs about Capabilities), social support (Social Influences), major health event (Environmental Context and Resources), goal behavioural (Goal), action planning (Behavioural Regulation). This work extends the limited research on the modifiable barriers and enablers for physical activity participation by individuals living with HF. The research findings provide insights for cardiologists, HF-specialist nurses, and physiotherapists to help co-design and deliver a physical activity intervention more likely to be effective for individuals living with HF.
Although the world of sports has witnessed numerous corruption scandals, the effects of perceived corruption in sports have not been sufficiently investigated in the literature. The aim of this paper is to examine how sports team identification weakens people’s perceptions of corruption in sports, and how it dampens corruption’s negative effects on spectator behavior. The study also examines how prevalent social norms regarding corruption in a country strengthen or weaken these effects. A survey of 1,005 sports spectators from four Sub-Saharan African countries reveals how the interplay between team identification and perceived corruption can encourage or discourage sports attendance under different conditions. Corruption is investigated through the theoretical lenses of the pluralistic nature of morality. Findings indicate that particularistic values linked to moral obligations toward the team collide with the universalistic values that demand fairness in sports. In addition, social norms of corruption moderate the clash between universalistic and particularistic values.
This paper argues that the Trump administration adopted a politicized form of strategic trade policy in its approach to international trade. This strategy combined deregulation, free trade, subsidies, export promotion, and various forms of protectionism. These trade instruments were ideologically incoherent, but the administration designed them so domestic firms could compete against foreign ones and so the US to dominate the world order. These policies came from debates in the 1980s when the Reagan administration created a strategy to stem manufacturing decline as European and Asian economies grew. When we see the 1980s as a confrontational moment for the USA in the world, we can better understand the origins and practice of the Trump administration's strategic vision on trade policy in the 2010s.
The present article examines how the presence of others from a different social group (i.e., outgroup audience) influences consumers' food choices relative to the presence of others from their own social group (i.e., ingroup audience). In four studies, using various types of group memberships (race, university affiliation, and work affiliation), we first find that consumers are more likely to make healthy food choices in the presence of racial (Study 1) and university (Study 2) outgroup (vs. ingroup) audiences. Then, using an experimental causal‐chain mediation approach, we show this effect occurs because consumers anticipate more negative judgment from outgroup (vs. ingroup) audiences (Studies 3a and 3b). We discuss the possible role of outgroup contact and diversity in promoting healthy eating.
Aposematism is the signalling of a defence for the deterrence of predators. We presently focus on aposematic organisms that exhibit chemical defences, which are usually signalled by some type of brightly coloured skin pigmentation (as is the case with poison frog species of the Dendrobatidae family), although our treatment is likely transferable to other forms of secondary defence. This setup is not only a natural one to consider but also opens up the possibility for rich mathematical modelling: the strength of aposematic traits (signalling and defence) can be unambiguously realised using variables that are continuously quantifiable, independent from one another and which together define a two-dimensional strategy space wherein the aposematic behaviour of any one organism can be represented by a single point. We presently develop an extensive mathematical model in which we explore the joint co-evolution of aposematic traits within the context of evolutionary stability. Even though empirical and model-based studies are conflicting regarding how aposematic traits are related to one another in nature, the majority of works allude to a positive correlation. We presently suggest that both positively and negatively correlated combinations of traits can achieve evolutionarily stable outcomes and further, that for a given level of signal strength there can be more than one optimal level of defence. Our findings are novel and pertinent to a sizeable body of physical evidence, which we discuss.
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Carsten Allefeld
  • Department of Psychology
Spyros Galanis
  • Division of Economics
Marie Poirier
  • Department of Psychology
Bernie Cohen
  • Department of Computer Science
Anne-Kathrin Fett
  • Department of Psychology
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