Ethnocentrism: The Hidden Adversary of Effective Global Leadership

With the industrial revolution, global leaders must more rapidly become knowledgeable of and develop essential cross-cultural competencies to be effective. Ethnocentrism represents a hidden barrier of effective leadership and must be acknowledged and addressed proactively by global leaders. The article examines the impact of ethnocentrism in four critical areas (leadership strategy, cross-cultural competencies, intercultural communication, and adaptation to international contexts) and argues that by developing cross-cultural competencies, leaders might naturally reduce ethnocentrism levels. This paper will also offer few examples to support international managers in understanding how ethnocentrism can affect performance.

Multi-Criteria Nautical Ports Capacity and Services Planning

This paper is a result of implemented research on proposed introduced methodology for nautical ports capacity planning by introducing a multi-criteria approach of defined criteria in the Adriatic Sea region. The purpose was analyzing the determinants - characteristics of infrastructure and services of nautical ports capacity allocated, especially nowadays due to COVID-19 pandemic, as crucial for successful operation of nautical ports. Giving the importance of the defined priorities for short-term and long-term planning is essential not only in terms of the development of nautical tourism, but also in terms of developing the maritime system, but unfortunately this is not always carried out. Evaluation of the use of resources should follow from a detailed analysis of all aspects of resources bearing in mind that nautical tourism used resources in a sustainable manner and generates effects in the tourism and maritime sectors. Consequently, identified multiplier effect of nautical tourism, which should be defined and quantified in detail, should be one of the major competitive products on the Croatian Adriatic and the Mediterranean. Research of nautical tourism is necessary to quantify the effects and required planning system development. In the future, the greatest threat to long-term sustainable development of nautical tourism can be its further uncontrolled or unlimited and undirected development, especially under pressure markedly higher demand than supply for new moorings in the Mediterranean. Results of this implemented research are applicable to nautical ports management and decision makers of maritime transport system development. This paper will present implemented research and obtained result - developed methodology for nautical port capacity planning - Port Capacity Planning Multi-criteria decision-making. A proposed methodological approach of multi-criteria capacity planning includes four criteria (spatial - transport, cost - infrastructure, ecological and organizational criteria, and additional services). The importance of the criteria and sub-criteria is evaluated and carried out the basis for a sensitivity analysis of the importance of the criteria and sub-criteria. Based on the analysis of the identified and quantified importance of certain criteria and sub-criteria as well as sensitivity analysis and analysis of changes of the quantified importance scientific and applicable results will be presented. These obtained results have practical applicability by management of nautical ports in the planning of increasing capacity and further development and for the adaptation of existing nautical ports. The obtained research is applicable and replicable in other seas and results are especially important and useful in this COVID-19 pandemic challenging maritime development framework.

Experiences and Coping of Adults with Death of Siblings during Childhood in Chinese Context: Implications for Therapeutic Interventions

The death of a sibling in childhood leads to significant impacts on both personal and family development of the surviving siblings, however, both short-term and long-term effects of sibling loss in Chinese societies such as Hong Kong have been inadequately documented in the literature. This paper explores the experience of encountering siblings’ death during childhood with the use of semi-structured interviews. Through thematic analysis, the author explores the impacts on surviving siblings’ emotions, coping styles, struggles and challenges and personal development. Furthermore, the influences on family dynamics are explored thoroughly, including the changes in family atmosphere, family roles, family relationship, family communication and parenting styles. More importantly, the author identifies (i) existing continuing bonds; (ii) crying; (iii) adequate social support; (iv) hiding own emotions as a gesture of protecting parents as the crucial elements pertinent to surviving siblings’ successful adaptation in the face of sibling loss. In addition, “child-centered” and “family-centered” service implications of families with a sibling's death in a Chinese context are discussed.

Integrating Blockchain and Internet of Things Platforms: An Empirical Study on Immunization Cold Chain

The adoption of Blockchain technology introduces the possibility to decentralize cold chain systems. This adaptation enhances them to be more efficient, accessible, verifiable, and data security. Additionally, the Internet of Things (IoT) concept is considered as an added-value to various application domains. Cargo tracking and cold chain are a few to name. However, the security of the IoT transactions and integrated devices remains one of the key challenges to the IoT application’s success. Consequently, Blockchain technology and its consensus protocols have been used to solve many information security problems. In this paper, we discuss the advantages of integrating Blockchain technology into IoT platform to improve security and provide an overview of existing literature on integrating Blockchain and IoT platforms. Then, we present the immunization cold chain solution as a use-case that could be applied to any critical goods based on integrating Hyperledger fabric platform and IoT platform.

Data Collection in Hospital Emergencies: A Questionnaire Survey

Many methods are used to collect data like questionnaires, surveys, focus group interviews. Or the collection of poor-quality data resulting, for example, from poorly designed questionnaires, the absence of good translators or interpreters, and the incorrect recording of data allow conclusions to be drawn that are not supported by the data or to focus only on the average effect of the program or policy. There are several solutions to avoid or minimize the most frequent errors, including obtaining expert advice on the design or adaptation of data collection instruments; or use technologies allowing better "anonymity" in the responses. In this context, and to overcome the aforementioned problems, we suggest in this paper an approach to achieve the collection of relevant data, by carrying out a large-scale questionnaire-based survey. We have been able to collect good quality, consistent and practical data on hospital emergencies to improve emergency services in hospitals, especially in the case of epidemics or pandemics.

Affective Adaptation Design for Better Gaming Experiences

Affective adaptation is a creative way for game designers to add an extra layer of engagement to their productions. When player’s emotions are an explicit factor in mechanics design, endless possibilities for imaginative gameplay emerge. Whilst gaining popularity, existing affective game research mostly runs controlled experiments in restrictive settings and rely on one or more specialist devices for measuring player’s emotional state. These conditions albeit effective, are not necessarily realistic. Moreover, the simplified narrative and intrusive wearables may not be suitable for players. This exploratory study investigates delivering an immersive affective experience in the wild with minimal requirements, in an attempt for the average developer to reach the average player. A puzzle game is created with rich narrative and creative mechanics. It employs both explicit and implicit adaptation and only requires a web camera. Participants played the game on their own machines in various settings. Whilst it was rated feasible, very engaging and enjoyable, it remains questionable whether a fully immersive experience was delivered due to the limited sample size.

Method for Tuning Level Control Loops Based on Internal Model Control and Closed Loop Step Test Data

This paper describes a two-stage methodology derived from IMC (Internal Model Control) for tuning a PID (Proportional-Integral-Derivative) controller for levels or other integrating processes in an industrial environment. Focus is ease of use and implementation speed which are critical for an industrial application. Tuning can be done with minimum effort and without the need of time-consuming open-loop step tests on the plant. The first stage of the method applies to levels only: the vessel residence time is calculated from equipment dimensions and used to derive a set of preliminary PI (Proportional-Integral) settings with IMC. The second stage, re-tuning in closed-loop, applies to levels as well as other integrating processes: a tuning correction mechanism has been developed based on a series of closed-loop simulations with model errors. The tuning correction is done from a simple closed-loop step test and application of a generic correlation between observed overshoot and integral time correction. A spin-off of the method is that an estimate of the vessel residence time (levels) or open-loop process gain (other integrating process) is obtained from the closed-loop data.

The Effects of an Online Career Intervention on University Students’ Levels of Career Adaptability

People’s ability to adapt to a constantly changing environment is essential. Career adaptability is central to Career Construction Theory, where proper adaptation to new situations, changing environments, and jobs require adequate career development. Based on current career theories and the possibilities offered by digital technology, the primary goal of this study is to develop career adaptability through an online tool. Its secondary goal is to apply for an online career intervention program and explore its developmental possibilities. A total of 132 university students from the bachelor program took part in the study, from which 65 students received a four-week online career intervention, while 67 participants formed the control group. Based on the results, it can state that career adaptability can be developed, and there is a great demand and interest from university students to use career-related programs on online platforms. Career interventions should be performed online as well if there is suitable software and a well-constructed program. Limitations and further implications are discussed.

Translation, Cultural Adaptation and Validation of the Hungarian Version of Self-Determination Scale

There is a scarcity of validated instruments in Hungarian for the assessment of self-determination related traits and behaviors. In order to fill in this gap, the aim of this study was the translation, cultural adaptation and validation of Self-Determination Scale (SDS) for the Hungarian population. A total of 4335 adults participated in the study. The mean age of the participants was 27.97 (SD = 9.60). The sample consisted mostly of females, less than 20% were males. Exploratory and Confirmatory Factor Analysis was performed for factorial structure checking and validation Cronbach’s alpha was used to examine the reliability of the factors. Our results revealed that the Hungarian version of SDS has good psychometric properties and it is a reliable tool for psychologists who would like to study or assess self-determination traits in their clients. The adapted and validated Hungarian version of SDS is presented in this paper.

Learning Objects Content Presentation Adaptation Model Considering Students' Learning Styles

Learning styles (LSs) correspond to the individual preferences of a person regarding the modes and forms in which he/she prefers to learn throughout the teaching/learning process. The content presentation of learning objects (LOs) using knowledge about the students’ LSs offers them digital educational resources tailored to their individual learning preferences. In this context, the most relevant characteristics of the LSs along with the most appropriate forms of LOs' content presentation were mapped and associated. Such was performed in order to define the composition of an adaptive model of LO's content presentation considering the LSs, which was called Adaptation of Content Presentation of Learning Objects Considering Learning Styles (ACPLOLS). LO prototypes were created with interfaces that were adapted to students' LSs. These prototypes were based on a model created for validation of the approaches that were used, which were established through experiments with the students. The results of subjective measures of students' emotional responses demonstrated that the ACPLOLS has reached the desired results in relation to the adequacy of the LOs interface, in accordance with the Felder-Silverman LSs Model.

Cardiac Biosignal and Adaptation in Confined Nuclear Submarine Patrol

Isolated and confined environments (ICE) present several challenges which may adversely affect human’s psychology and physiology. Submariners in Sub-Surface Ballistic Nuclear (SSBN) mission exposed to these environmental constraints must be able to perform complex tasks as part of their normal duties, as well as during crisis periods when emergency actions are required or imminent. The operational and environmental constraints they face contribute to challenge human adaptability. The impact of such a constrained environment has yet to be explored. Establishing a knowledge framework is a determining factor, particularly in view of the next long space travels. Ensuring that the crews are maintained in optimal operational conditions is a real challenge because the success of the mission depends on them. This study focused on the evaluation of the impact of stress on mental health and sensory degradation of submariners during a mission on SSBN using cardiac biosignal (heart rate variability, HRV) clustering. This is a pragmatic exploratory study of a prospective cohort included 19 submariner volunteers. HRV was recorded at baseline to classify by clustering the submariners according to their stress level based on parasympathetic (Pa) activity. Impacts of high Pa (HPa) versus low Pa (LPa) level at baseline were assessed on emotional state and sensory perception (interoception and exteroception) as a cardiac biosignal during the patrol and at a recovery time one month after. Whatever the time, no significant difference was found in mental health between groups. There are significant differences in the interoceptive, exteroceptive and physiological functioning during the patrol and at recovery time. To sum up, compared to the LPa group, the HPa maintains a higher level in psychosensory functioning during the patrol and at recovery but exhibits a decrease in Pa level. The HPa group has less adaptable HRV characteristics, less unpredictability and flexibility of cardiac biosignals while the LPa group increases them during the patrol and at recovery time. This dissociation between psychosensory and physiological adaptation suggests two treatment modalities for ICE environments. To our best knowledge, our results are the first to highlight the impact of physiological differences in the HRV profile on the adaptability of submariners. Further studies are needed to evaluate the negative emotional and cognitive effects of ICEs based on the cardiac profile. Artificial intelligence offers a promising future for maintaining high level of operational conditions. These future perspectives will not only allow submariners to be better prepared, but also to design feasible countermeasures that will help support analog environments that bring us closer to a trip to Mars.

Study of the Energy Efficiency of Buildings under Tropical Climate with a View to Sustainable Development: Choice of Material Adapted to the Protection of the Environment

In the context of sustainable development and climate change, the adaptation of buildings to the climatic context in hot climates is a necessity if we want to improve living conditions in housing and reduce the risks to the health and productivity of occupants due to thermal discomfort in buildings. One can find a wide variety of efficient solutions but with high costs. In developing countries, especially tropical countries, we need to appreciate a technology with a very limited cost that is affordable for everyone, energy efficient and protects the environment. Biosourced insulation is a product based on plant fibers, animal products or products from recyclable paper or clothing. Their development meets the objectives of maintaining biodiversity, reducing waste and protecting the environment. In tropical or hot countries, the aim is to protect the building from solar thermal radiation, a source of discomfort. The aim of this work is in line with the logic of energy control and environmental protection, the approach is to make the occupants of buildings comfortable, reduce their carbon dioxide emissions (CO2) and decrease their energy consumption (energy efficiency). We have chosen to study the thermo-physical properties of banana leaves and sawdust, especially their thermal conductivities, direct measurements were made using the flash method and the hot plate method. We also measured the heat flow on both sides of each sample by the hot box method. The results from these different experiences show that these materials are very efficient used as insulation. We have also conducted a building thermal simulation using banana leaves as one of the materials under Design Builder software. Air-conditioning load as well as CO2 release was used as performance indicator. When the air-conditioned building cell is protected on the roof by banana leaves and integrated into the walls with solar protection of the glazing, it saves up to 64.3% of energy and avoids 57% of CO2 emissions.

Transformation of Industrial Policy towards Industry 4.0 and Its Impact on Firms' Competition

Although Europe is on the threshold of a new industrial revolution called Industry 4.0, many believe that this will increase the flexibility of production, the mass adaptation of products to consumers and the speed of their service; it will also improve product quality and dramatically increase productivity. However, as expected, all the benefits of Industry 4.0 face many of the inevitable changes and challenges they pose. One of them is the inevitable transformation of current competition and business models. This article examines the possible results of competitive conversion from the classic Bertrand and Cournot models to qualitatively new competition based on innovation. Ability to deliver a new product quickly and the possibility to produce the individual design (through flexible and quickly configurable factories) by reducing equipment failures and increasing process automation and control is highly important. This study shows that the ongoing transformation of the competition model is changing the game. This, together with the creation of complex value networks, means huge investments that make it particularly difficult for small and medium-sized enterprises. In addition, the ongoing digitalization of data raises new concerns regarding legal obligations, intellectual property, and security.

Entrepreneur Universal Education System: Future Evolution

The success of education is dependent on evolution and adaptation, while the traditional system has worked before, one type of education evolved with the digital age is virtual education that has influenced efficiency in today’s learning environments. Virtual learning has indeed proved its efficiency to overcome the drawbacks of the physical environment such as time, facilities, location, etc., but despite what it had accomplished, the educational system over all is not adequate for being a productive system yet. Earning a degree is not anymore enough to obtain a career job; it is simply missing the skills and creativity. There are always two sides of a coin; a college degree or a specialized certificate, each has its own merits, but having both can put you on a successful IT career path. For many of job-seeking individuals across world to have a clear meaningful goal for work and education and positively contribute the community, a productive correlation and cooperation among employers, universities alongside with the individual technical skills is a must for generations to come. Fortunately, the proposed research “Entrepreneur Universal Education System” is an evolution to meet the needs of both employers and students, in addition to gaining vital and real-world experience in the chosen fields is easier than ever. The new vision is to empower the education to improve organizations’ needs which means improving the world as its primary goal, adopting universal skills of effective thinking, effective action, effective relationships, preparing the students through real-world accomplishment and encouraging them to better serve their organization and their communities faster and more efficiently.

An Optimized Method for 3D Magnetic Navigation of Nanoparticles inside Human Arteries

In the present work, a numerical method for the estimation of the appropriate gradient magnetic fields for optimum driving of the particles into the desired area inside the human body is presented. The proposed method combines Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), Discrete Element Method (DEM) and Covariance Matrix Adaptation (CMA) evolution strategy for the magnetic navigation of nanoparticles. It is based on an iteration procedure that intents to eliminate the deviation of the nanoparticles from a desired path. Hence, the gradient magnetic field is constantly adjusted in a suitable way so that the particles’ follow as close as possible to a desired trajectory. Using the proposed method, it is obvious that the diameter of particles is crucial parameter for an efficient navigation. In addition, increase of particles' diameter decreases their deviation from the desired path. Moreover, the navigation method can navigate nanoparticles into the desired areas with efficiency approximately 99%.

Greenhouse Gasses’ Effect on Atmospheric Temperature Increase and the Observable Effects on Ecosystems

Radiative forces of greenhouse gases (GHG) increase the temperature of the Earth's surface, more on land, and less in oceans, due to their thermal capacities. Given this inertia, the temperature increase is delayed over time. Air temperature, however, is not delayed as air thermal capacity is much lower. In this study, through analysis and synthesis of multidisciplinary science and data, an estimate of atmospheric temperature increase is made. Then, this estimate is used to shed light on current observations of ice and snow loss, desertification and forest fires, and increased extreme air disturbances. The reason for this inquiry is due to the author’s skepticism that current changes cannot be explained by a "~1 oC" global average surface temperature rise within the last 50-60 years. The only other plausible cause to explore for understanding is that of atmospheric temperature rise. The study utilizes an analysis of air temperature rise from three different scientific disciplines: thermodynamics, climate science experiments, and climactic historical studies. The results coming from these diverse disciplines are nearly the same, within ± 1.6%. The direct radiative force of GHGs with a high level of scientific understanding is near 4.7 W/m2 on average over the Earth’s entire surface in 2018, as compared to one in pre-Industrial time in the mid-1700s. The additional radiative force of fast feedbacks coming from various forms of water gives approximately an additional ~15 W/m2. In 2018, these radiative forces heated the atmosphere by approximately 5.1 oC, which will create a thermal equilibrium average ground surface temperature increase of 4.6 oC to 4.8 oC by the end of this century. After 2018, the temperature will continue to rise without any additional increases in the concentration of the GHGs, primarily of carbon dioxide and methane. These findings of the radiative force of GHGs in 2018 were applied to estimates of effects on major Earth ecosystems. This additional force of nearly 20 W/m2 causes an increase in ice melting by an additional rate of over 90 cm/year, green leaves temperature increase by nearly 5 oC, and a work energy increase of air by approximately 40 Joules/mole. This explains the observed high rates of ice melting at all altitudes and latitudes, the spread of deserts and increases in forest fires, as well as increased energy of tornadoes, typhoons, hurricanes, and extreme weather, much more plausibly than the 1.5 oC increase in average global surface temperature in the same time interval. Planned mitigation and adaptation measures might prove to be much more effective when directed toward the reduction of existing GHGs in the atmosphere.

Multi-Agent Searching Adaptation Using Levy Flight and Inferential Reasoning

In this paper, we describe how to achieve knowledge understanding and prediction (Situation Awareness (SA)) for multiple-agents conducting searching activity using Bayesian inferential reasoning and learning. Bayesian Belief Network was used to monitor agents' knowledge about their environment, and cases are recorded for the network training using expectation-maximisation or gradient descent algorithm. The well trained network will be used for decision making and environmental situation prediction. Forest fire searching by multiple UAVs was the use case. UAVs are tasked to explore a forest and find a fire for urgent actions by the fire wardens. The paper focused on two problems: (i) effective agents’ path planning strategy and (ii) knowledge understanding and prediction (SA). The path planning problem by inspiring animal mode of foraging using Lévy distribution augmented with Bayesian reasoning was fully described in this paper. Results proof that the Lévy flight strategy performs better than the previous fixed-pattern (e.g., parallel sweeps) approaches in terms of energy and time utilisation. We also introduced a waypoint assessment strategy called k-previous waypoints assessment. It improves the performance of the ordinary levy flight by saving agent’s resources and mission time through redundant search avoidance. The agents (UAVs) are to report their mission knowledge at the central server for interpretation and prediction purposes. Bayesian reasoning and learning were used for the SA and results proof effectiveness in different environments scenario in terms of prediction and effective knowledge representation. The prediction accuracy was measured using learning error rate, logarithm loss, and Brier score and the result proves that little agents mission that can be used for prediction within the same or different environment. Finally, we described a situation-based knowledge visualization and prediction technique for heterogeneous multi-UAV mission. While this paper proves linkage of Bayesian reasoning and learning with SA and effective searching strategy, future works is focusing on simplifying the architecture.

Adaptive Envelope Protection Control for the below and above Rated Regions of Wind Turbines

This paper presents a wind turbine envelope protection control algorithm that protects Variable Speed Variable Pitch (VSVP) wind turbines from damage during operation throughout their below and above rated regions, i.e. from cut-in to cut-out wind speed. The proposed approach uses a neural network that can adapt to turbines and their operating points. An algorithm monitors instantaneous wind and turbine states, predicts a wind speed that would push the turbine to a pre-defined envelope limit and, when necessary, realizes an avoidance action. Simulations are realized using the MS Bladed Wind Turbine Simulation Model for the NREL 5 MW wind turbine equipped with baseline controllers. In all simulations, through the proposed algorithm, it is observed that the turbine operates safely within the allowable limit throughout the below and above rated regions. Two example cases, adaptations to turbine operating points for the below and above rated regions and protections are investigated in simulations to show the capability of the proposed envelope protection system (EPS) algorithm, which reduces excessive wind turbine loads and expectedly increases the turbine service life.

A Constructivist Approach and Tool for Autonomous Agent Bottom-up Sequential Learning

During the initial phase of cognitive development, infants exhibit amazing abilities to generate novel behaviors in unfamiliar situations, and explore actively to learn the best while lacking extrinsic rewards from the environment. These abilities set them apart from even the most advanced autonomous robots. This work seeks to contribute to understand and replicate some of these abilities. We propose the Bottom-up hiErarchical sequential Learning algorithm with Constructivist pAradigm (BEL-CA) to design agents capable of learning autonomously and continuously through interactions. The algorithm implements no assumption about the semantics of input and output data. It does not rely upon a model of the world given a priori in the form of a set of states and transitions as well. Besides, we propose a toolkit to analyze the learning process at run time called GAIT (Generating and Analyzing Interaction Traces). We use GAIT to report and explain the detailed learning process and the structured behaviors that the agent has learned on each decision making. We report an experiment in which the agent learned to successfully interact with its environment and to avoid unfavorable interactions using regularities discovered through interaction.

Behavioral Response of Bee Farmers to Climate Change in South East, Nigeria

The enigma climate change is no longer an illusion but a reality. In the recent years, the Nigeria climate has changed and the changes are shown by the changing patterns of rainfall, the sunshine, increasing level carbon and nitrous emission as well as deforestation. This study analyzed the behavioural response of bee keepers to variations in the climate and the adaptation techniques developed in response to the climate variation. Beekeeping is a viable economic activity for the alleviation of poverty as the products include honey, wax, pollen, propolis, royal jelly, venom, queens, bees and their larvae and are all marketable. The study adopted the multistage sampling technique to select 120 beekeepers from the five states of Southeast Nigeria. Well-structured questionnaires and focus group discussions were adopted to collect the required data. Statistical tools like the Principal component analysis, data envelopment models, graphs, and charts were used for the data analysis. Changing patterns of rainfall and sunshine with the increasing rate of deforestation had a negative effect on the habitat of the bees. The bee keepers have adopted the Kenya Top bar and Langstroth hives and they establish the bee hives on fallow farmland close to the cultivated communal farms with more flowering crops.