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  • About
  • The Global ETD Search service is a free service for researchers to find electronic theses and dissertations. This service is provided by the Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations.
    Our metadata is collected from universities around the world. If you manage a university/consortium/country archive and want to be added, details can be found on the NDLTD website.

Children's and parents' perspectives of a supportive environment for 'Active Travel to School'

O'Sullivan, M. M. January 2013 (has links)
Active Travel to School is a term used to refer to any mode of travel that uses physical activity to go to school such as walking and cycling. Despite its demonstrated physical, developmental and sustainable benefits and after years of nationwide policies, strategies and schemes in place to increase it, the shift towards Active Travel to School in the UK has been negligible, and car use and road traffic have not declined. Within this context, this PhD research was funded by the EPSRC under a linked studentship to the ongoing VISIONS2030 project which explored the current dependency on motorised travel and how walking and cycling could be encouraged in the future. This research contributes to the project by examining the factors that influence Active Travel to School and by bringing the perspectives of the group of parents and children about a supportive environment for it to the study. Underpinned by the Interpretivist and Social-constructivist paradigm, the research adopted a qualitative survey approach in which 130 participants were involved through a range of interactive and novel participatory methods designed and implemented through focus groups, activity groups and semi-structured interviews carried out at schools and households from urban areas. The results show key factors acting as both barriers and enablers: despite perceptions that car use has many advantages for families and that Active Travel to School is not viable under current safety conditions, there is a substantial potential for a shift into an active travel culture that can be achieved through five different but simultaneous approaches in policy by: “Creating an easy, pleasant, safe and barrier free physical environment”, “Creating a social environment for active travel”, “Providing a supportive public transport”, “Convincing people of its benefits through promotion, incentives, education and innovations” and “Imposing restrictions to the use of private vehicles”.

Collaboration in English higher education estates

Crowe, P. January 2013 (has links)
Globalisation and changes in public policy act as a catalyst for change in the English Higher Education Sector. Consequently, Institutions place a greater focus on their supply chain to offer services that best fit their requirements, during the construction and refurbishment of physical assets. The construction industry will need to offer innovation, value for money and other benefits that associate with the collaborative procurement movement, which has been gathering pace since the 1990s. The aim of the research is to develop a framework to evaluate collaborative practice in Higher Education Property and Estates’ departments in England. The work is practitioner research that relates to a real world problem. The objectives include: construct a suitable framework; develop the framework using a particular institution; and assess the framework in the wider context of England. The research philosophy has foundations in both constructionism and pragmatism. The work develops the initial framework using literature. A Primary Case Study tests, relates and develops the framework in practice. To an extent, the literature review is able to provide transferability of the maturity model, particularly in relation to the implementation and motivation themes. Where the literature review could not provide transferability, a pragmatic approach is undertaken to improve the transferability of the research findings, which uses data from 44 estate strategies, 6 auxiliary case studies, 11 tender notices and industry sources. Data is generally qualitative and from such sources as interviews and documentation. The work uses thematic content analysis to explore organisations and summative content analysis to improve transferability. The work embraces Robson’s strategy for validity including that, which associates with prolonged involvement, triangulation, peer debriefing, member checking and audit trail. The research deliverable includes a clearly defined framework. The Framework includes three maturity models, namely implementation, motivation and risk. Each model has a particular purpose in relation to clients overall deliverables. The implementation theme relates to working efficiently. The motivation theme relates to exceeding performance requirements. The risk theme relates to achieving performance requirements. The Framework is for use by Directors of Estates and other policy makers that make decisions concerning collaboration in property and estates departments. The particular emphasis is collaboration with supply chains. The purpose of the study is to create the framework. The study does not make generalisations concerning the use of collaborative features. The framework has been created using cross sectional data form across the English higher education sector. The framework will be of use in other sectors and geographical locations following further research.

Knowledge sharing initiatives in local authorities in Malaysia

Mohamed, O. January 2014 (has links)
This research investigates the knowledge sharing initiatives in local authorities in Malaysia. It focuses on to what extent knowledge sharing initiatives impact on the planning permission process and how best this impact can be conceptually modelled and presented for the purpose of improving the process. The aim of this research is to establish the significance of knowledge sharing initiatives in the planning permission process and to develop guidance in this regard for local authorities in Malaysia with a view to improving the process. The needs of this research arise due to the importance and the rapid flow of information, which is transforming business processes and procedures, and resulting in the rise of a knowledge-based economy. It also responds to the government’s intention to achieve “Developed Nation” status in 2020. Knowledge sharing initiatives are organisational approaches to manage knowledge in an organisation. In order to exploit effective knowledge sharing; the organisation has to establish the significance of knowledge sharing initiatives approaches. Nevertheless, strong demand and expectation from citizens for efficient service delivery, coupled with global challenges in the knowledge based economy have fuelled the need for government agencies to consider the effectiveness of knowledge sharing as a strategy to improve service delivery. Effective knowledge sharing initiatives have the potential to benefit local authorities in view of their role. This research, one of the most comprehensive ever undertaken in this area, comprises interviews and distributions of questionnaires to local authorities in Malaysia. The list of local authorities was acquired from the Ministry of Housing and Local Government. The data were obtained from embedded questionnaire surveys, online survey and interviews; 103 (34.56%) data were obtained through the survey method, and 20 interviewees participated. The research findings of this study have several implications for research into the role of knowledge sharing initiatives concerning the planning permission process. First, the nature of knowledge sharing tools and techniques in local authorities is dependent on the variety of tasks and complexity of the sub-process of the planning permission process. Second, the effectiveness, the use and exploitation of knowledge sharing tools (technologies) and techniques are dependent on the sub-process of the planning permission process and type of local authority and the resources available. Third, the results show that there is a difference in the impact of organisational structure, culture and motivational construct in the effective sharing of knowledge in local authorities of various sizes. Developing a model and guidance for improving the planning permission process through knowledge sharing initiatives have enable management to guide towards establishing the significance of knowledge sharing initiatives in the process of planning permission. The guidance in knowledge sharing initiatives includes the following steps: identify knowledge, gathering and finding knowledge, organising, sharing, applying and evaluating. It also gives clear responsibility to various levels of team members including top management, managerial and supporting staff in implementing knowledge sharing initiatives in the planning permission process. There is extensive scope for more empirical studies to explore and document the issue of knowledge sharing in local authorities in Malaysia. An in-depth investigation into regional culture and its impact on knowledge sharing is needed and would lead to results of practical utility. A study on other local authorities that adopt a similar research methodology to the current study would contribute to the body of knowledge in this area.

Volume diffusers for architectural acoustics

Hughes, Richard James January 2011 (has links)
Most conventional diffusers are used on room surfaces, and consequently can only operate on a hemispherical area. Placing a diffuser in the volume of a room may provide greater efficiency by allowing scattering into the whole space. There are very few examples of volume diffusers and they tend to be limited in design; subsequently a suitable method for their development is lacking. 2D volumetric diffusers are investigated, considering a number of design concepts; namely arrays of slats, percolation structures and cylinder arrays. An experimental technique is adapted for their measurement, and the results are used to verify prediction models for each type. Diffusive efficacy is assessed through a new metric based on an existing surface diffuser coefficient and a measure of scattered power requiring half of the energy to be back-scattered. Single layer slat arrays are formed from optimal aperiodic sequences, though due to the directional scattering from individual slats at higher frequencies, performance is heavily dependent on line-of-sight through the array. This limits the operational bandwidth to approximately 1.5 octaves. Multi-layer structures offer improvements by allowing cancellation of the back-scattered lobe, though at high frequency the specular reflection from an individual slat still dominates. Percolation fractals use slats orientated in multiple directions and by scattering laterally can channel sound and diffuse at lower frequencies. Low frequency diffusion however is limited and the best structures are those which provide a broad range of geometric reflection paths. Through application of number theoretic concepts, arrangements of cylinders are shown to offer more enhanced diffusing abilities than slat and percolation structures. At low frequency scattered power is controlled by cylinder size and at high frequency diffusion is dominated by their spacing. By minimising structural similarity and including cylinders with circumference comparable to wavelength, significant diffusion is achieved over an approximate 5 octave bandwidth.

The Code for Sustainable Homes : what are the innovation implications for the social housing development sector?

Barlow, C. January 2012 (has links)
The research considers the capacity of the social housing development sector to generate or accelerate innovation to meet the Code for Sustainable Homes, the national standard detailing targets for the sustainability of new housing, within project and organisational resource constraints. Innovation in response to the Code needs to be appropriate within the context of multiple organisations acting together to design and deliver housing developments that are timely and cost-effective. The literature review synthesises the themes of innovation, regulation and projects in the context of housing development. The review finds that research into the generation of innovation across the range of organisations involved in early housing design projects to meet these multiple regulatory requirements is found to be both recent and limited in quantity. The research approach for addressing the research questions is justified as a single exploratory case study, and techniques for data collection include semi-structured interviews, workshops and document review. Analysis of data generates a detailed review of the dynamic process of the design of a social housing development by project partners involved in innovative ways of working to meet Code requirements in a landscape of significant and multiple new and established site-specific, local, regional and national regulations. The research finds that the impact of the Code at the design stage is one of negotiation around existing building techniques and recent technologies to reduce CO2 emissions within business finance models and physical site limitations affecting orientation and placement of homes. The Code operates within a range of design requirements defined by project partners at this early stage, and innovation to meet these requirements is predominantly incremental, within a process of iteration, negotiation, compromise and solution. The research outcome makes a contribution to knowledge by extending construction management theory on the relationship between housing construction project innovation and regulation in the context of improving housing sustainability. It achieves this by exploring and illuminating the complex nature of a compelling contemporary, real world situation of a national sector responding to the urgent global imperative to address carbon reduction whilst delivering sustainable social housing.

Examination of the public policy in process in Libya

Ahmed, A. M. January 2013 (has links)
Although the study of public policy and the policy process, as an academic and distinctive area, has received much attention in the West, it is still far from being the case in the Arab states, including Libya. Indeed, the policy process in Libya is still ill-defined and not well documented, and there is also an absence of detailed research work related to the policy process in the Libyan context. Therefore, this study aims to examine the practice of the policy process in Libya and compare with the policy process as defined in the conceptual framework developed from the Western literature. Policy initiation, formulation, implementation and evaluation were typically identified as the principal processes. Each of these was examined as a distinctive type of government activity in order to get a better understanding of how the Libyan government developed and put selected policies into effect, and took actions to implement them to bring policy outputs into existence. This was done by investigating the various activities and actors involved in each process so as to determine their characteristics and the factors affecting their effectiveness in achieving policy objectives. A case study was selected as an appropriate strategy for explorative and descriptive analysis. The main sources of evidence were provided by semi-structured interviews with key people from different policy areas and government agencies who have been involved in the policy process, supplemented by a literature and documents review to achieve a higher degree of validity and reliability of the research. Collected data was analysed using matrix format and cognitive mapping. The findings of this study have shown that the central planning has been adopted by the government as an appropriate method for policy planning and preparation. The policy process in Libya has experienced some defects due to certain internal and external factors. Internal factors mainly refer to the inappropriate selection of the implementation means, adoption of overambitious objectives, mismanagement, instability of the administrative structures, and insufficiency of some existing legislation in particular the one related to the national urban planning system. They also refer to the lack of feedback information as well as shortage of technology and professional skills in the policy implementation and evaluation. As for the external factors, they were concerned with the changing international oil markets and prices and the foreign sanctions that were imposed on Libya, all of which directly affected the implementation of the selected policies since they were largely financed from oil revenues.

Resilience of construction SMEs to extreme weather events

Wedawatta, H. G. January 2013 (has links)
Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), which form a significant section in many economies, are some of the worst impacted by the Extreme Weather Events (EWEs) and are considered to be the most vulnerable section of the UK economy to the impact of extreme weather. This is of particular importance to the construction industry, as an overarching majority of construction companies are SMEs who account for the majority of employment and income generation within the industry. Whilst construction has been perceived as a sector significantly vulnerable to the impacts of EWEs, the issues with regard to resilience of construction SMEs to EWEs have only been subjected to limited in-depth academic research. This study was developed to identify the growing need for improving the resilience of construction SMEs and sought to undertake an in-depth investigation of the issues. Positioned within a pragmatic research philosophy, case study research strategy was adopted as the overall research strategy in undertaking this investigation. A mixed method research choice consisting of an exploratory questionnaire survey of SMEs and in-depth interviews of case study SMEs were employed to investigate the research questions which arose. The findings of the exploratory questionnaire survey indicated a lack of coping strategies among the construction SMEs studied. However, the in-depth case studies revealed that construction SMEs with significant previous EWE experience have, indeed, developed various strategies to address the risk of EWEs. A theoretical framework was developed to represent the resilience of construction SMEs to EWEs, informed by the findings of the study, where resilience was seen as a collective effect of vulnerability, coping strategies and coping capacities of SMEs, characteristics of the EWE and the wider economic climate. The study provides an original contribution towards the overarching agenda of the resilience of SMEs and policy making in the area of EWE risk management.

Changes in interactive occupation and social engagement for people with dementia : comparing household to traditional nursing home environments in Ireland

Morgan-Brown, M. January 2013 (has links)
Aim: To understand and evaluate the effect of a change from a Traditional Model Unit (TMU) to a Household Model Unit (HMU) for people with dementia, using social engagement and interactive occupation of residents, staff and relatives as outcome measures, in order to make recommendations for future nursing home development. Methods: A mixed methods approach was adopted. Residents, staff and relatives were observed using a snapshot observational method for 11 days pre renovation and 14 days post renovation. Pre renovation interviews with staff (n=25) and relatives (n=22) were contrasted with 19 staff and 14 relatives post renovation interviews. Results: Residents spent more time in the HMU communal living spaces (p≤.001). They were more independently active (p≤.001), more socially engaged (p≤.001) and more involved in interactive occupations (p≤.001). There were significant increases in the time that staff spent in the room (p≤.001), being socially engaged with residents (p≤.001), and performing their work tasks (p≤.001). The data set for relatives was smaller and significance was only achieved in an aggregated grouping engaged and interactive category (p≤.05). Qualitative interview data was used to elaborate on this quantitative data. The interview data was condensed into a multi-component typology of HMU features for future comparison and research. Conclusion: Adopting an HMU environment created behavioural changes in interactive occupation and social engagement of residents, staff and relatives utilizing the main sitting areas. The physical, operation and social environments which created these changes are described in detail. Recommendations are made for nursing home environments and future research.

Development of a framework for partnering through aligning organizational cultures in the Malaysian construction industry

Abdul Nifa, F. A. January 2013 (has links)
In line with the main awareness of partnering in solving the many issues within the global construction industry, the Malaysian government has call upon the local industry to embrace and adapt partnering practices in their project delivery. Although culture has been noted as one of the main enabler for partnering, there is lack of research in highlighting the role of culture in partnering and virtually no evidence of a partnering framework established for a multi-ethnic and racial workforce in a developing country such as Malaysia. This research aims to develop a framework for partnering that aligns organizational culture in the Malaysian construction industry. This exploratory research studies the basic concept of partnering and the influence of culture to partnering success. This research seeks to identify which partnering enablers are readily available in the Malaysian construction industry at present. Apart from that, this research also explores the current organizational culture which affects the level of engagement in partnering among private SME consultant firms in particular and the industry in general. The private SME consultant firms are highlighted in this research due to the evidence that indicates the critical role of the consultants in driving the innovations in the industry, which is also cited as one of the outputs from successful partnering. This research leans towards interpretivist epistemological standpoint with an inductive approach and employs a convergent parallel mixed methods survey design in order to answer the research questions. In this research, 14 semi-structured interviews were conducted with top and middle managers in 4 private SME consultant firms and 69 questionnaires were completed by practitioners from various segments of the Malaysian construction industry. As the design suggests, findings from a critical literature review, semi-structured interviews and questionnaires are merged to form a foundation for the development of framework in this research. This research contributes not only to expanding the knowledge in the concept of partnering but also for the implementation of partnering in the construction industry particularly in Malaysia through the framework developed. The practical implication of this thesis is to provide the construction practitioners with the method to establish, enhance and maintain a network of successful partnering relationship in Malaysia.

Project risk management for community-based post-disaster housing reconstruction

Ophiyandri, T. January 2013 (has links)
Indonesia is a country that is highly susceptible to disasters, particularly earthquakes. In the last decade, Indonesia has been hit by three large earthquakes; Aceh in December 2004, Yogyakarta in May 2006, and West Sumatra in September 2009. These earthquakes have created considerable losses to Indonesian communities, leading to 130,000 fatalities, US$10.3 billions in economic losses, and 500,000 heavily damaged houses. The extensiveness of housing reconstruction is the most problematic issue in the housing reconstruction programme sector. Although a community-based post-disaster housing reconstruction project (CPHRP) has been implemented, nevertheless the outcome was overshadowed by delays in delivery, cost escalation, unexpected quality, and community dissatisfaction. The implementation of good practice in project risk management in the construction industry is expected to enhance the success of CPHRP. Accordingly, this study aims to develop a risk management model for community-based post-disaster housing reconstruction approach. In order to achieve the aim and objective of the research, multiple case studies are selected as research strategies. This study implements the sequential mixed method application, starting with a semi-structured interview and followed by a questionnaire survey as the primary method. Content analysis was used to analyse qualitative data, whilst descriptive and inferential statistics were deployed to analyse quantitative data. The novelty of the research is as follows: this study reveals the importance of the understanding of a community-based approach in post-disaster housing reconstruction. Four highly significant advantages of CPHRP have been discovered, the most significant advantage being that it ‘creates a sense of ownership’ to beneficiaries of the project. The psychological advantage of CPHRP was also found to be greater than the construction advantage. Furthermore, the risk assessment revealed some high-risk events during the pre-construction stage of CPHRP. The project objective most affected by them is project time completion. A risk response document has also been proposed. Moreover, this study found twelve critical success factors (CSFs) of CPHRP, with the highest of the CSFs being ‘transparency and accountability’. With careful attention paid to the above findings, it is expected that the success of the implementation of CPHRP can be increased.

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