14,388 results for Doctoral

  • Travelling with the Spirit: Pentecostal Migration Religiosity Between Ghana and Australia

    Dennis, Dorcas (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    The desire to migrate to foreign lands is widespread within contemporary Ghana. Among the Ghanaians, there is a growing sense that migrating overseas requires spiritual empowerment. Evidence of this development can be seen in the emergence of “passport and visa industries” that depend on the activities of a multitude of religious agents and ritual experts. Correspondingly, Ghanaian religious agents are now constantly generating new strategies designed to meet prospective migrants’ demands. The practice of enlisting the help of religious agents and practices for the purpose of international migration is having a marked effect on the Ghanaian religious landscape in two key ways: first, it has created a demand for religious agents who possess the power to solve migration-related spiritual problems; second, in response to this demand, Ghana's purveyors of spiritual powers have shaped their practices to inspire and enable migration. Using data from extensive fieldwork among members of the Church of Pentecost (CoP) and Power Chapel (PC) in Ghana and Australia, this thesis offers an account of the role of religious narratives and rituals in the experience of Ghanaians migrating abroad, and among Ghanaian migrants in Australia. The thesis argues that the present preoccupation with overseas migration, and its interconnection with religion, is creating a migration religiosity (MR) that inspires and enhances migrations, and which forms the basis for migrants’ extension of Ghanaian religions from the so-called global-South to the global-North. This MR operates in each phase of the migration experience. In the homeland, prospective migrants use MR to facilitate their international travel. On the journey, MR is the source of spiritual protection and safety. MR continues and takes on new roles as migrants use it in meeting new conditions and experiences in their new land. Migrants’ reliance on MR for place-making as they settle into their new lives in the diaspora motivates them to create worshiping Cells. These Cells become the setting in which Ghanaian migrants reformulate their religious traditions, and from which they launch proselytizing practices or reverse missions to the host community.

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  • Inspiring Youth Sustainability Leadership and Creating Sustainable Schools: Explorations of extracurricular programming and university-community partnerships

    Blythe, Charlotte (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    This research was motivated by concern for the wider ecology of our planet, the necessity for a cultural shift towards sustainability, and curiosity about roles psychologists could play in creating this shift. It was based around two real-world projects within the interlinked fields of inspiring youth sustainability leadership and creating sustainable schools. The first project involved a university-community partnership between my research team from the Department of Psychology at the University of Auckland and a local co-educational secondary school, Western Springs College (WSC). This action research endeavour was focused around achieving WSC’s strategic goal of working towards sustainable practices in all areas of school life. My research team essentially facilitated the project for two years, and supporting the school’s appointed student environmental leaders was a central feature of our approach. The second project was a participatory evaluation of a non-school-based extracurricular student sustainability leadership programme, Make a Difference (MAD), run by Auckland Council’s environmental education team. The evaluation involved myself working collaboratively with MAD coordinators and youth participants to develop an understanding of the programme’s theory of change, its developmental and action-related outcomes for young people, and options for ongoing monitoring and evaluation. In this thesis, I present four papers based on my engagement in these projects. The first two draw on the MAD evaluation. Paper one profiles the participatory methods utilised to develop MAD’s theory of change, and offers an interpretation of how this initiative inspires and supports youth sustainability leadership. Paper two is a case study of the MAD programme’s initial three-day residential retreat, and explores the key elements that may underlie its transformative potential. The latter two papers focus on the experiences of the core people driving change within the WSC sustainability project. Paper three is a phenomenological, authoethnographic study on my research team’s guiding principles, our experiences applying these principles within the project, school members’ impressions of our approach, and lessons learned from the reflective process. Paper four focuses on the perceptions, experiences and practices of WSC’s appointed student environmental leaders, and draws attention to the uniqueness of environmental leadership compared to more traditional forms of student leadership (i.e., sporting and cultural). As a whole, this thesis contributes insights about the transformative potential of non-school-based (MAD) and school-based (WSC) extracurricular programmes for inspiring youth sustainability leadership. It also contributes a novel approach to creating sustainable schools via university-community partnerships. I conclude with a discussion of meta-themes from the papers, implications for practitioners, and an invitation to psychologists to engage in emancipatory forms of research.

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  • Literacy Leadership in New Zealand Secondary Schools

    Gibbs, Robyn (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    While much has been published about the topic of leading literacy (most of this from the USA), little has been produced that links literacy leadership practices to improved outcomes for learners. This thesis addressed the gap in the evidence about what works, and adds to what is known about literacy leadership in New Zealand schools. It explored the processes literacy leaders used to support teaching and learning in secondary schools with different patterns of English achievement in the New Zealand qualification National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA). If we know what effective literacy leadership practices look like we can concentrate on building these amongst our school leaders as part of the priority of raising achievement in New Zealand. The hypothesis explored in this research is that effective leaders of literacy make use of a set of core practices to support teachers to implement high quality literacy teaching practices. These teaching practices, in turn, impact positively on the literacy engagement and achievement of learners. In this research, literacy leadership was explored through a case study approach. Through a process of analysing NCEA achievement, three schools were chosen that had high NCEA English achievement. A further three schools with low NCEA English achievement were also chosen. Data about literacy leadership practices were gathered through interviews with six literacy leaders, and twelve teachers (two in each school) with whom these literacy leaders had worked. Interview data were allocated to coding categories using NVivo 10 software. These categories, named the Practices of Effective Literacy Leadership (PELL), had been identified from a set of 43 studies about literacy leadership. Results show that literacy leaders in high achieving schools were more likely to use a greater range of the PELL compared to low achieving schools. These included: building teachers content knowledge about what to teach, when and how; helping teachers to understand literacy learning across curriculum; challenging teachers to think of different ways of doing things; acquiring resources that align to students’ needs; building the trust and engagement of teachers and other leaders; constructing a vision for literacy learning in the school; engaging in curriculum evaluation; planning a school literacy curriculum; solving school problems related to teaching and learning; advising teachers about resources for students in their classes; guiding teachers in the use of smart tools; drawing on their experience as a leader; and drawing on their expertise as a leader Further analyses showed that these differences could be grouped into three broad categories of practice. These three categories are - focusing on improving students’ attainment and improving the engagement of learners; fostering organisational coherence; and creating a culture for improvement. They are critical for building teachers’ capabilities in secondary schools, and for reducing current inequities in students’ attainment in New Zealand secondary schools. This research found that shifting curriculum priorities and senior leadership changes in low achieving schools impacted on the opportunities literacy leaders had to work with teachers. Literacy leaders in high achieving schools faced fewer organisational barriers to working with teachers and with other leaders. The ability to answer the research question has been potentially impacted by two limitations. Neither of these limitations could be dealt with in the context of a time-bound doctoral thesis, or where participants volunteer to take part in the research. The first limitation relates to sampling design. It was not possible to control for teacher or literacy leader background variables such as prior participation in professional learning and development, and this may have impacted on the results obtained. Secondly, teachers who took part in the research were only partially responsible for the school-based NCEA results used in sampling. Other teachers, in the English department and other departments, may have also contributed to outcomes. This thesis identifies further possibilities for research on literacy leadership. These include more case study research that examines literacy leadership in a range of schooling contexts (for instance larger and smaller secondary schools with different infrastructure); longitudinal studies that examine the changes that schools make, including improvement rates in students’ literacy, as a result of literacy leadership practices; studies that look in detail at the ways literacy leaders (and other curriculum leaders) work with principals and senior leaders to bring about change and improvement in literacy achievement. New Zealand does not have a standalone programme for building literacy leaders’ capability. Whether it is practical or desirable to have such a programme is debatable. It would be beneficial to consider, however, how literacy leaders and other curriculum leaders can be supported in their important roles of guiding other teachers.

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  • Influences on the Role of the Stepfather in Stepfamilies

    Brennan, James (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Previous research indicates that the stepparent-child relationship has an important influence on the adjustment of stepfamilies, and in particular on children’s wellbeing. Stepfathers adopt a range of roles in regard to their stepchildren, and some roles appear to be more adaptive than others. This qualitative study aimed to understand stepfathers’ perceptions about the stepfather role, and examine the influences that shape the kinds of roles that stepfathers develop in stepfamilies. A sample of 86 stepfathers, living in New Zealand with their stepchildren (at least some of the time), completed an online questionnaire about their experiences and perceptions of the stepfather role, and the influences that shape their relationships with stepchildren. The questionnaire elicited participants' attitudes about the stepfather role, perceptions about social expectations for their behaviour towards stepchildren, and role models for being a stepfather. Stepfathers were prompted to write about the kinds of roles they had and the influences that shaped their roles. Participants were also asked about their experiences of seeking advice about being a stepfather, or their reasons for not doing so. Thematic and categorical analyses were conducted on the qualitative data collected. The results indicate that there remains significant lack of clarity about what role a stepfather should play from a societal perspective, and variation in the kinds of roles stepfathers develop in stepfamilies. Three role types were identified in the data: a father-like role, a supportive adult role, and an uninvolved role. The roles taken by stepfathers were influenced by several salient factors: stepfathers’ own attitudes and experiences, alignment or misalignment with their partners about their roles, the receptiveness of stepchildren, the involvement of biological fathers, and, to a lesser extent, perceived endorsement or opposition from extended family and society more broadly. These findings are discussed in terms of existing knowledge about stepfather roles, and a preliminary model of the influences on stepfather roles is presented. This study contributes to the existing body of stepfamily research, and provides discussion on the implications for clinical practice and future research directions.

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  • Transition with Dignity: From Special School to Community Life Understood in Partnership with Individuals with Significant Disabilities

    Hart, Sarah (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    At the critical life stage of leaving school, many young adults are excited for their future. This is not always the case, however, for students with significant disability. After a systematic literature review of transition research, two essential concerns arose: Students with significant disability experience dismal outcomes compared to their mainstream peers, and they have been alienated from their own transition planning, as well as from the pertaining research. The purpose of this study was to examine transition from the perspectives of those living the experience. Six-month ethnography was guided by three young men, who exited segregated special schools into the early stage of adult life in Aotearoa New Zealand. Fieldwork involved extensive observation and adapted interviews tailored to each young man. Data were also collected from transition informants (parents, teachers, transition providers), and review of key artefacts (documents, photographs, video). Working in partnership, the young men reclaimed their position as experts on their own transition. Their voices, whether audible or non-verbal, were privileged above all others. Analysis was conducted in multiple, inductive and deductive, waves. Using an inductive approach, two themes emerged that impacted the three transitions: trialling post-school options and a lack of collaboration between transition partners called here, silos. Deductive analysis framed by the capability approach (Nussbaum, 2000; Sen, 1999) involved noticing and naming the young men’s personal capabilities, then reviewing the way they informed each transition. While individual transition experiences varied, insufficient trialling of post-school options hindered the young men’s sense of belonging in post-school life. This issue was exacerbated by the lack of collaboration between those who planned transition, to the extent that teachers and the students themselves were excluded. Case narratives were used to articulate the difference in experiences of each young man, tied together by unifying transition artefacts of timetable organisers. The research findings were considered alongside prior research in order to form a counternarrative. Commonly understood transition experiences for individuals with significant disability were refuted, holding practical, theoretical, and methodological implications. Reconceptualised transitions were grounded in the genuine opportunities each young man could have to construct a thriving life of personal priority. A transition with dignity.

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  • Characterising the molecular mode of action of connexin therapeutics for the treatment of retinal injury and disease

    Kim, Ye Ri (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Connexin43 gap junctions are non-selective membrane channels that facilitate cell-to-cell communication. A functional gap junction channel is formed upon docking of two hemichannels, or connexons, but an undocked hemichannel plays a key role in the initial response to cellular injury. In particular Connexin43 hemichannels have been shown to communicate aberrant signals that promote a self-perpetuating cycle involving vascular leak, edema, inflammation and neuronal cell death. Pre-clinical models of central nervous system injuries have demonstrated that systemic delivery of Connexin43 mimetic Peptide5 (VDCFLSRPTEKT, PeptagonTM) significantly improves functional outcomes. Additionally Tonabersat (SB-220453) has been tested in phase II clinical trials to target spreading waves of abnormal activity in cellular injury. Despite the therapeutic potential, the molecular mode of action of these compounds has not yet been described. Therefore, the aim of this thesis is to characterise the molecular mode of action of Peptide5 and Tonabersat to support their clinical progression. An in vitro model of ischemia-reperfusion injury was developed to examine connexin43 hemichannel-mediated ATP release in a human cerebral microvascular endothelial cell (hCMVEC) line. Gap junction channel function was assessed using an established scrapeloading assay and visualised using immunohistochemistry. Modified analogues of Peptide5, including single alanine substituted peptides and truncated, were used to assess the mode of action of Peptide5. The site of action of Peptide5 was tested using extracellular loops in a competition assay. Peptide5 inhibits Connexin43 hemichannel-mediated ATP release in hCMVEC by acting on extracellular loop two of Connexin43. Furthermore, Peptide5 sequence specificity is important for inhibiting hemichannel-mediated ATP release but less so for the uncoupling of gap junctions. The SRPTEKT motif is central to Peptide5 function but on its own is not sufficient to inhibit hemichannels at the concentrations used. Tonabersat exhibits a concentration-dependent response where a low concentration significantly inhibits connexin43 hemichannel-mediated ATP release but relatively higher concentrations uncouple gap junctions, with Connexin43 junction plaques internalised and degraded via the lysosomal pathway. Taken together, this study provides an understanding for the molecular mode of action of Peptide5 and Tonabersat to support their clinical development for the treatment of retinal injury and diseases.

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  • Patient choice as illusion: Autonomy and choice in end-of-life care in the United Kingdom and New Zealand

    Winnington, Rhona (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Death is a reality of life as we will all die. Despite this inevitability, death in the twenty-first century remains unwelcome and has been sequestered into the enclaves of medical practice as a means of quelling the rising tide of fear it provokes. Using a narrative analysis approach to examine online social media commentary of personal experiences, this research explores the reality of patient choice at end-of-life in the United Kingdom (UK) and New Zealand. Specifically it examines the barriers encountered when individuals seek control of the dying trajectory and how this unfolds for the patient compliant with the medicalised ‘good death’ and for those seeking the right-to-die; contextualising these issues within the human rights framework. This research explores the means through which medical practice maintains power over the dying individual, actualised through the use of specialist knowledge and the medical vernacular. It compares the use of specialist palliative models of care with euthanasia and assisted suicide, and examines the selective collaboration between medicine and law as a means of subverting the individual who attempts to disrupt the contemporary accepted norms when dying. My research suggests that patient choice when dying is an illusion in practice, despite individual choice being considered an essential component in clinical decision making. I highlight that those seeking the right-to-die disrupt the normative compliance expected in the doctor/patient relationship, thus, positioning them as deviant and other. I suggest that there is a potential weakness in the construct of medical power and is evidenced in the selective reliance upon law when clinical decisions are challenged by the deviant individual. Finally, I suggest that although the equity in the doctor/patient relationship remains unbalanced at present the right to choice at end-of-life remains a potent prospect; with the re-invigoration and re-presentation of the Ars Moriendi having the potential to reflect the self-centricity of the contemporary Western individual to access the ‘good death’ of choice.

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  • Personality Development in Adulthood: Studies of stability and change in a nationally representative sample of adult New Zealanders

    Milojev, Petar (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    The development of personality in adulthood remains a topic of debate with direct implications for the conceptualisation of personality traits (McCrae & Costa, 1999; Roberts et al., 2008). However, with notable exceptions, comprehensive longitudinal investigations of the development of personality traits across a broad range of the adult life span are surprisingly rare. Through four systematic longitudinal investigations, the present thesis investigates the change and stability in the Big Six personality traits – Extraversion, Agreeableness, Conscientiousness, Neuroticism, Openness to Experience, and Honesty- Humility – in a nationally representative panel study of adult New Zealanders. Study 1 demonstrated the very high stability of the six traits, thus confirming the prediction of high temporal stability of personality traits. This study also provided the crucial test of the test-retest reliability of the personality scales used throughout this thesis. Study 2 demonstrated the systematic variability in the stability of personality traits across the adult life span. That is, personality traits tend to stabilise across younger adulthood, reach peak stability in middle age (i.e., late 40’s and early 50’s), and systematically destabilise thereafter. The findings of Study 3 indicated remarkable consistency in personality traits associated with a major natural disaster (namely, the 2010/2011 Earthquakes in Canterbury, New Zealand). The only meanlevel change from before to after the earthquakes was a small decrease in Emotional Stability (or an increase in Neuroticism) among those affected by the event. Finally, Study 4 investigated normative patterns of mean level change in personality traits and identified distinct developmental trajectories for the different traits with changes occurring across the entire adult life span. Collectively, these studies paint an interesting picture of both stability and change in personality traits, highlighting the need for an integrated perspective on personality development – one that incorporates both the intrinsic stability of the construct and early development, as well the continuing process of change.

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  • A Novel Click Chemistry-Based Method to Detect Hypoxic Tumour Cells and Characterise Their Gene Expression

    Hou, Alec (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Tumour hypoxia results in aggressive tumours with increased metastatic potential and resistance to therapy. Information is limited on cellular responses to hypoxia in the tumour microenvironment primarily due to lack of suitable research tools. After hypoxia-dependent metabolism and entrapment of adducts in hypoxic cells, the ‘clickable’ 2- nitromidazole hypoxia marker (SN33267) bearing a terminal alkyne group can be derivatised via copper(I)-catalysed alkyne-azide cycloaddition (CuAAC) with azides. Labelling of hypoxic cells with fluorophore azides, after exposure to SN33267, was optimised in vitro by simultaneously improving hypoxia-selectivity and preserving the integrity of cellular RNA. With the optimised protocol, the CuAAC-based method was able to separate pre-mixed aerobic (20% O2) and hypoxic (0% O2) cells (2-h exposure with 100 μM SN33267) by fluorescenceactivated cell sorting (FACS) according to the cellular fluorescence intensity in every human cancer line tested (N=4) without prior cell fixation and permeabilisation. The RNA extracted from FACS-sorted fractions was of sufficient quality (RIN>6) for measurement of gene expression. The method was independently validated by evaluating transcript abundance (qPCR) of 15 clinicallyvalidated hypoxia marker genes. Mice bearing subcutaneous human tumour xenografts were administered SN33267 (60 mg/kg; intraperitoneal) and excised 2 h later. Dissociated tumour cells were fluorescently labelled via the CuAAC-based approach and sorted by FACS into four fractions. The transcript expression of 15 hypoxia marker genes was sequentially increased with increasing fluorescence intensity of the four FACS-sorted cell populations. This was mirrored by protein expression of one of the genes (BNIP3). The expression of 10 oxidoreductases involved in the activation of hypoxia-activated anticancer prodrugs was assessed in the same fractions. In FaDu xenografts, TXNRD1 was the only oxidoreductase gene with upregulated transcription (P<0.05) in response to elevated hypoxic stress. In SiHa xenografts, the reductase genes were only moderately upregulated (up to 2-fold) in the fractions of intermediate hypoxia and the most hypoxic fraction showed no change in gene expression relative to the least hypoxic fraction, as did protein expression of the key reductase gene POR. This novel CuAAC-based method is much faster and more versatile than the established antibodybased hypoxic cell detection techniques and provides at least the same sensitivity. The new method was validated independently using a hypoxia gene signature. It provides a powerful and user-friendly tool for pre-clinical study of the hypoxia-mediated effects in the tumour microenvironment by gene and/or corresponding protein expression in tumours in situ.

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  • Distribution of Lipids in the Human Brain and their Differential Expression in Alzheimer's Disease: A Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionisation-Imaging Mass Spectrometry (MALDI-IMS) Study

    Mendis, Lakshini (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the leading cause of dementia, is pathologically characterised by β-amyloid plaques and tau tangles. However, there is also evidence of lipid-dyshomeostasis-mediated AD pathology. Given the structural diversity of lipids, mass spectrometry (MS) is a useful tool for studying lipid changes in AD. The use of matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI)-imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) circumvents the limitation of traditional MS, allowing users to visualise the distribution of lipids. Thus, I optimised MALDI-IMS to image the distribution of lipids in the postmortem human middle temporal gyrus (MTG) and hippocampus, and analyse its differential expression in AD. In order to study a large number of cases, compared to previously published MALDI-IMS papers, I developed an analysis workflow to efficiently evaluate large, heterogeneous datasets and accurately detect lipids that were differentially expressed in AD. I hypothesised that the MTG would show similar lipid differences to those previously reported in other cortical regions. Further, given that each hippocampal anatomical sub-field has its own function, I postulated that there would be lipid differences unique to each sub-field. Both positively- and negatively-charged lipid ion species were abundantly detected in the control and AD cohorts. Grey matter and white matter had unique lipid profiles. However, there were variations in the distribution of lipids even within the same region, especially in the grey matter in the MTG and the CA1 region in the hippocampus. In AD, while the distribution patterns of lipids were comparable to the control cohort, some lipids were expressed at different levels. For example, the expression of some phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) lipids was decreased in the MTG. The majority of lipids that were differentially expressed in the hippocampus were found in the CA1 region. Further, there were differences in eight lipids that were specific to the dentate gyrus (DG) region. High-resolution MALDI IMS revealed that these lipids showed a heterogeneous distribution amongst the three DG layers. Finally, I quantified PE lipids with MALDI-IMS, using a lipid-spiked tissue homogenate approach. This is the first time that this approach has been successfully used to quantify lipids the human MTG and the DG. The concentration of PE did not change in the DG in AD; however, the concentrations of four PE species, namely PE 38:4, PE 39:5, and PE 40:6, were reduced in the grey matter in the MTG. Thus, the MALDI-IMS technique, the analysis workflow, and the lipid quantification approach, provided a novel method to investigate specific lipid differences in the postmortem human brain in AD. This work extends the understanding of the lipid composition of the human brain and how it differs in AD. Future work will focus on elucidating if these lipid differences are a driver, or consequence, of AD pathogenesis.

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  • Landscape connectivity and sediment flux within the upper Yellow River basin

    Nicoll, Tami (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    The degree of landscape connectivity has wide-ranging implications for sediment availability, frequency of transport, and the nature of sediment storage within a basin. Looking at the system as a whole, and identifying the connections that facilitate or impede sediment movement within a catchment is central to these applications. This thesis examines landscape connectivity within the highly diverse landscapes of the upper Yellow River (UYR) basin at a broad scale, with detailed focus on a smaller tributary that lies in the incised basin fill deposits of the Guide basin close to the margin of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP), the Garang subcatchment. Uplift of the QTP has resulted in a high-altitude landscape with a cold, semi-arid continental climate within the upper Yellow River. The region is characterized by several wide, low-relief basins separated by the two major mountain ranges (up to 2 km in relief) that run through the region, with tectonic deformation enduring within a series of strike-slip fault complexes. The thesis results are presented as a series of three papers. Findings are brought together in a discussion chapter. The first paper focuses on the pronounced variability in the landscapes of the upper Yellow River basin. The classification presented in this paper provides an effective organizational framework to describe the landscape diversity. Stark contrasts in landform assemblages and associated process relationships are evident across three very different terrains, reflecting the complex inter-relationships between tectonics, climate and surficial processes over time. A broad, low-relief, and highly disconnected upper plateau area at the headwaters of the UYR represents a relict peneplain that may have formed prior to regional uplift. The ranges of the Anyemaqen Shan in the central basin form a high-relief and highly connected landscape. Finally, the incisional story of the UYR dominates within the lower portion of the study area, where low-relief basin fills have been highly incised as a result of headward erosion of the Yellow River as drainage was established through the area. The second and third papers present a detailed examination of the landscape connectivity and sediment dynamics within the Garang study catchment. The second paper applies two methodological approaches for assessing landscape connectivity, a GIS-based geomorphometric index and a methodology linking interpretation of satellite imagery and field mapping of sediment storage to slope threshold analysis. Landscapes of the Garang catchment are differentiated into three geomorphic zones characterized by distinct landscape configuration and dominant geomorphic processes: i) a highly disconnected upper catchment of low-relief with large inactive sediment stores; ii) a transitional zone where present landscape dynamics are controlled in large part by past incisional processes in the form of large alluvial fan/terrace deposits; and iii) a highly connected and highly dissected landscape within the lower catchment that has little accommodation space for sediment storage. The findings from this paper emphasize the need for field-based observations that are capable of differentiating between landforms and activity levels of sediment stores, as well as providing inference on geomorphic process, that may not be evident with the use of cell-based morphometrics. The final paper expands upon these findings and presents an overview of sediment distribution and volume within the highly incised Garang catchment, combining field and GIS-based analyses. The magnitude and pattern of sediment storage is shown to be highly disparate between three distinct geomorphic zones of the Garang catchment. Findings of the study also reveal a somewhat unconventional pattern of sediment storage, whereby sediment storage is greater within the headwaters and decreases with distance downstream, adding to the range of landscape settings in which catchment-scale patterns of sediment storage have been assessed. The study also provides insight into the influence of long-term landscape evolution within the area, and how the response to lowering of the base level through Yellow River incision has impacted landscape connectivity and associated patterns of sediment storage and reworking within the catchment. Findings from both studies highlight the importance of field-informed appraisals of landscape dynamics, site-specific characteristics and the significance that basin-scale history can have on determining contemporary sediment dynamics. Issues associated with scales of analysis and the importance of localized influences are a key theme within the thesis. The final discussion chapter contextualizes findings of the thesis, focusing primarily on scale relations between landforms, geomorphic compartments (zones) and the subcatchment-scale analysis, and prospects to meaningfully up-scale these understandings to the UYR as a whole, linking analyses at the subcatchment scale to considerations of how we approach connectivity analyses across differing scales and contexts. Limitations and implications of the study are outlined.

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  • A qualitative exploration of stress, coping, support-seeking, and help-seeking among Chinese migrant youth in New Zealand

    Lei, Yan Yan (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    This research uses qualitative methodology to explore how Chinese migrant youth in New Zealand experience and manage stress. Data was collected through focus groups and interviews with 13 young people, aged between 16 and 18 years, who had migrated from China to New Zealand with their families. A thematic analysis addressed the four areas of focus in this research: stress, coping, support-seeking, and help-seeking from psychological services. In the area of stress, participants described tensions associated with differences between their experiences and those of their European peers, and with immersing themselves in dominant culture while also holding on to their migration stories and ethnic culture. Although they developed hybrid identities and tried to fit in to dominant society, discrimination constrained their fitting in and the identities they were able to construct. In relation to coping, participants spoke about hybridisation of their migration stories, ethnic culture, and dominant culture in their negotiations of coping. Although they valued dealing directly with stress, they also valued closing off emotion and finding acceptance and gratitude, as well as actively rejecting ‘bad’ ways of coping used by their European peers. In relation to support-seeking, participants described how they preferred to rely on their own resources. This related to autonomy and concerns that talking with others does not help, but was also overlaid with Chinese values regarding emotions and relationships. In the area of help-seeking, participants spoke about their reluctance to use psychological services. They related this to lack of knowledge about services, concerns about trusting professionals, minimisation of their problems, and fear of the erosion of their autonomy, but also highlighted lack of familiarity with services, poor cultural fit, and wanting to be resilient like their parents. Therefore, they emphasised the need for both general and culturally-specific solutions to mitigate these barriers. Overall, the young people were active agents who negotiated their migration stories, ethnic culture and minority status, and dominant culture and discourses in how they experienced and managed stress. Harnessing their resourcefulness and understanding their social and cultural contexts is critical for working meaningfully with these young people.

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  • “Kōkiritia i roto i te kotahitanga”: A Process Evaluation of a Wraparound Programme at Te Whānau o Waipareira Trust

    Tamihere, Christina (2015)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    In New Zealand, youth offending has become a significant problem; a problem that has led to the promotion and development of programmes which aim to prevent and reduce youth crime. The Wraparound model of care is one that aims to address this issue. It is a relatively new concept in New Zealand, one that has very promising outcomes but has not yet been given the opportunity to show its full potential. This thesis presents the findings of a process evaluation of Te Whanau O Waipareira Trust’s Wraparound Service (WWS). The evaluation aimed to describe the programme with a focus on cultural variables, identify strengths and weaknesses and to make recommendations for the improvement of the delivery of the service. This project utilised qualitative methods, including interviews, field observations and a review of programme documentation. A total of 23 people participated in this project, including 9 rangatahi, 4 whānau, 2 internal stakeholders, 3 external stakeholders and 5 kaimahi. The project ran over a period of approximately 18 months and was based at Te Whānau o Waipareira Trust. Results indicated (a) a high level of satisfaction by rangatahi; (b) engagement in the WWS was facilitated by collaborating and communicating with whānau, the quality of the rangatahi-kaimahi relationship and the provision of attractive resources, (c) strong emotional connection in being able to identify with a Māori service, (d) a high quality of staffing, (e) a high-level of tikanga incorporated into the service, (f) an issue of infidelity as established by the National Wraparound Initiative and (g) the importance of strong organizational structure, process, leadership and support for staff. The results are discussed in terms of programme recommendations for the improvement of the Wraparound service. This study will make a unique contribution to the successful implementation of Wraparound services in the Aotearoa context, which in the past has been largely overlooked and under researched. It will have further implications on the factors involved in engaging Rangatahi and Whānau Māori in social services and may also provide a framework of comparison for the development of Whānau Ora in Aotearoa.

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  • International experience and cultural intelligence: The role of study abroad

    Ott, Dana (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    I investigate the relationship between international experience and the development of Cultural Intelligence (CQ) by applying a Social Learning Theory (SLT) lens to examine how the level of immersion of different study abroad program components impact CQ. I separate the components that constitute a study abroad program, and examine differences in CQ between their levels of immersion. The results provide evidence that CQ varies across different study abroad program components as well as between the levels of immersion of the components. In particular, the findings suggest that the level of immersion of the language of instruction used in course-work and the opportunities provided for reflection on the cultural experience program components impact participants’ CQ. Furthermore, based on the results, I conclude that the relationship between international experience and CQ may not be linear with respect to exposure to the host-country language, and that when utilizing international experience for skills development it is necessary to provide multiple information sessions about culture and opportunities for individuals to reflect on the experience. The knowledge generated from my thesis provides new insights about the relationship between international experience and CQ, how the construct of international experience is measured, and potential explanations for the results of previous studies. Proof of variance in CQ dependent on how immersive a study abroad program component is has theoretical implications for future investigations that utilize the international experience construct. Additionally, it provides practical recommendations for International Business (IB) education, when designing study abroad programs, and for International Human Resource Management (IHRM), when selecting future expatriates.

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  • Functional significance of external trap morphology in aquatic Utricularia

    Gardiner, Corin (2015)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Utricularia is a genus of carnivorous plants with mechanically activated suction traps. Species are largely generalist, opportunistic predators with very plastic vegetative growth. They variously occupy terrestrial, aquatic and epiphytic habitats and can respond to changes in their environment by altering their investment in carnivory. Their traps are adorned with external appendages, the morphology of which varies greatly among species, carrying both phylogenetic and growth-habit specific signals. While this morphological variation is well documented, little is known about its functional significance. One hypothesis with limited support is that the appendage morphology of aquatic species is under selection for prey attraction. Previous work has shown that appendages of one aquatic clade, antennae and bristles, enhance the capture of one microcrustacean species. There has also been very little work done to quantify the plasticity of aquatic appendage expression, either among conspecifics or in response to environmental variation. Additionally, while studies have examined the effects of biotic and abiotic environmental variation on the growth and investment in carnivory of aquatic Utricularia, the effect of prey-derived mineral nutrition on plant growth has remained confounded with that of ambient nutrition. In this thesis I revisit the prey-capture enhancement hypothesis and look for plasticity in the appendage expression of aquatic Utricularia. Firstly, I conduct appendage ablation experiments on two aquatic Utricularia species with different growth habits, U. australis and U. gibba, to test the aquatic-appendage prey-capture hypothesis with a range of ubiquitous prey animals that exhibit differing feeding and locomotory behaviours. Aquatic appendages only enhance the trapping of prey taxa with specific feeding behaviour. Secondly, I conduct a growth experiment which produces the first experimental evidence of appendage expression changing in response to environmental variation, and demonstrate persistent differences in appendage expression between clones of the same species. Finally, with a second growth experiment, I examine the relative contributions of ambient and prey-derived nutrition to growth and investment in carnivory of U. australis. Prey capture plays a larger role in enhancing plant growth than ambient nutrition. I found little support for the aquatic prey-capture hypothesis. The capture rates of three ubiquitous prey taxa are unaffected by the presence of appendages. The degree of persistent appendage variation in between tested individuals is slight and therefore may not be functionally significant. Antennae and bristle expression is affected by environment but responses are not consistent with being an investment in carnivory.

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  • Essays on Return Predictability

    Lu, Helen (2013-08-21)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    This dissertation is a collection of three essays that investigate the momentum effect and the short-run predictability in currency carry trade profits. The first essay investigates whether tail risks of momentum strategies make them unattractive within the context of prospect utility. Momentum returns have strongly asymmetric tail risks and that asymmetric tail risk is precisely what makes momentum strategies unattractive. This study is the first to document the undesirable tail risk characteristics of momentum returns. The second essay uncovers economically significant predictability in carry trade profits from shorting the low-yielding currencies. The monthly world equity index return, monthly changes in currency volatility and monthly changes in equity volatility predict carry trade profits from the short leg two months later, while monthly changes in commodity prices, monthly changes in currency volatility and monthly changes in equity volatility predict carry trade profits from the long leg three months later. Investors could have used the discovered leg-specific predictability to time the market and improve their trading outcomes, instead of staying fully invested or predicting carry trade profits from both legs with a single model. Evidence from two tests conducted in this essay points towards the gradual information diffusion model as the most likely explanation for the discovered predictability, while time varying risk premia do not seem to explain this effect. The last essay examines return predictability among carry trades, stocks and commodities in a dynamic vector auto regression setting. The predictive effect goes from commodities to stock, from stocks to low-yielding currencies and from commodities to high-yielding currencies. Variables in these markets are more strongly correlated in the high-risk regime than in the low-risk regime. Drops in the world equity index (commodity prices), but not rises, predict decreases in carry trade profits from low-yielding (high-yielding) currencies. Increases in currency volatility, but not decreases, predict drops in carry trade profits from low-yielding currencies. The in-sample asymmetric effects also exist out-of-sample, but these asymmetric prediction models do not consistently deliver better forecasts than symmetric models.

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  • Pneumatology and Union: John Calvin and the Pentecostals

    Ross, Peter Graham (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Otago

    The aim of this research is to identify whether affinities, or touch points, exist between John Calvin’s pneumatology and account of the union between the believer and Christ and Pentecostal thought on these issues. If it can be demonstrated that they do, then Calvin could be of great assistance to Pentecostals as they seek a global theology. John Calvin’s thought on the subjects is summarised, and a review undertaken of Pentecostal thought which focuses on Spirit release (the preferred term for what is most commonly termed Spirit baptism among Pentecostals), and the work of the Spirit in salvation. The narrowness of this review is necessary as a global Pentecostal theology which can be summarised in the same way as Calvin’s thought does not yet exist. With the respective positions established, conversations between them are constructed within three subjects: The Assurance of Faith; Providence and Guidance; and Justification. These subjects are chosen because of the heavy involvement of the Spirit within each in both systems, and the contribution made by the union as the arena of the Spirit’s work in each. Within each of these doctrines a number of touch points are identified, where there is either agreement between the systems or there is some common ground. The latter might be a similarity of process, or a matter of degree. For example, Macchia posits a direct role for the Spirit in justification, whereas for Calvin justification is entirely Christological. However, the work of the Spirit in establishing the prior union between the believer and Christ is necessary for justification in Calvin. This constitutes a touch point or affinity which rests on some common ground, not on direct agreement. In the final chapter, there is extended consideration of Spirit release. This firstly establishes the term as a valid description of the encounter to which Pentecostals testify at the core of their witness. Secondly, it shows that a concept can be developed which enables Spirit release to sit well as an extension from Calvin’s thought. With this linkage established, it is shown that the touch points identified under the above headings are so substantial that Pentecostals can usefully look to Calvin on pneumatology and union as ground on which they can develop their own views in order to deepen their own theology and so move towards a global Pentecostal theology.

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  • Application of pulsed electric field processing for production of low sulphite wine and the selective inactivation of non-Saccharomyces yeasts

    Vidya, Kethireddy (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Otago

    Winemakers add sulphites during winemaking for their antimicrobial (control of indigenous and undesirable microbes) and antioxidant properties. However, the demand for no added sulphite (NAS) or reduced sulphite wines, coupled with a demand for wines with lower alcohol and a distinctive regional character is increasing interest in making wines with indigenous wine yeasts through mixed or spontaneous fermentations. Pulsed electric field (PEF) processing of grape must has previously been proven to enhance extraction of juice, polyphenols/bioactives and to reduce the microbial levels by either reversible or irreversible electroporation of cell walls. To determine the suitability of using PEF in wine making and to reduce the reliance on the use of sulphites, this study investigated the impact of PEF at levels suitable for extraction and/or sulphites on Saccharomyces and non-Saccharomyces yeasts during the cold soak conditions. The estimation of sub-lethal injury in S. cerevisiae using the traditional approach incorporating a maximum non-inhibitory concentration (MNIC) of sodium chloride (NaCl) was also tested and its accuracy was evaluated in light of the interactions between the initial processing stress and the subsequent selection stress. In addition, studies with PEF, sulphites and the combination of PEF (1.0-1.1 kV/cm and 18-260 kJ/kg) and sulphites (35-350ppm) at 4 and 7 Log CFU/mL at exponential and stationary growth phases in S. cerevisiae, P. kluyveri and H. uvarum were conducted during cold soak conditions for 8 days. Further biochemical analysis using oxidative damage (protein carbonyls and lipid peroxides) and antioxidant enzyme (SOD, CAT, GPx, GR) activity biomarkers was conducted following PEF (1.0 kv/cm,196 kJ/kg), the addition of sulphites (350 ppm) or PEF pre-treatment followed by sulphites in S. cerevisiae, P. kluyveri and H. uvarum over a period of 48h at cold soak conditions. The results confirm the versatility of PEF for the extraction of grape polyphenols while simultaneously managing the total yeast numbers during maceration, facilitating either mixed/ spontaneous fermentation or the introduction of commercial Saccharomyces spp. The evaluation of MNIC method for quantifying sub-lethal injury showed the shortcomings of the method and the need to delve further into the biochemical and molecular approaches to understand the impact of sub-lethal injury. Screening the impact of a range of PEF and sulphite levels at different initial concentrations and growth phases of the three yeast spp and the biochemical analysis monitoring oxidative stress markers following PEF, sulphites and PEF pre-treatment followed by sulphites showed that there was differential response among the yeast spp. In addition, the pre-treatment of PEF was proven to enhance the impact of sulphites and a differential response in S. cerevisiae, P. kluyveri and H. uvarum. This effect is suggested to be due to PEF (1.0-1.5 kV/cm) inducing reversible electroporation which facilitates the entry of sulphites into the cell. Growth phase, growth temperature and media pH were all found to be key parameters in the selective inactivation process. In conclusion, it is suggested that use of PEF during maceration at cold soak conditions is a feasible technology for the production of reduced sulphite wines.

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  • Reproduction and larval ecology of the toheroa, Paphies ventricosa, from Oreti Beach, Southland, New Zealand

    Gadomski, Kendall Lynn (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Otago

    Paphies ventricosa is a large surf clam endemic to New Zealand with a patchy distribution and whose populations have substantially declined during the past century owing to overfishing and habitat degradation. Poor recruitment is now evident, and therefore, understanding the larval recruitment of P. ventricosa is key to developing and implementing conservation strategies for the species. In order to identify factors driving larval recruitment in toheroa, Paphies ventricosa, from Oreti Beach, Southland, New Zealand, the southernmost known extent of the species, various studies were carried out from 2011 to 2014 in the field and the laboratory In 2011, the reproductive cycle of P. ventricosa was examined over one year in a population at Oreti Beach. In 2012, the spatial variation in reproduction among four sites along Oreti Beach, including the site from 2011, was quantified from body indices and the histological examination of gonads. Based on changes in oocyte size, gametogenic stage and condition index, we observed a species with a primary spawning in spring and a second spawning event in late summer/autumn, with no resting phase but minimal reproductive activity over winter. Seasonal reproduction corresponded with warmer sea surface temperature and a peak in chlorophyll-a concentrations in the region. Small-scale (< 15 km) variation in the timing of spawning was also evident along Oreti Beach, with a degree of asynchrony that could affect fertilisation success in the population. These patterns may be an important consideration when identifying areas that may be considered for conserving source populations. Using scanning electron microscopy and light microscopy, fertilisation, and embryonic and larval development were observed at three culturing temperatures (12, 16 and 20 ºC). The progress of development follows that previously described for the family Mesodesmatidae, with P. ventricosa having a small egg (63–70 mm), with an 83–102 mm trochophore stage observed at 15 h, and a 100 mm D-veliger larva observed at 22 h at 12 and 16 ºC, and 37 h at 20 ºC. At 20 ºC, the pediveliger larval stage was reached by 31 d. While the morphology of the embryonic and larval stages of P. ventricosa is typical for bivalves, we show that in this species the shell field invagination occurs in the gastrula stage and that the expansion of the dorsal shell field occurs during gastrulation, with the early trochophore having a well-developed shell field that has a clearly defined axial line between the two shell lobes. The growth of P. ventricosa larvae cultured at 12, 16 or 20 ºC over 39, 33 and 31 d respectively, was faster at warmer temperatures. Using the temperature quotient Q10 at day 27 to quantify the response to temperature, values of Q10 = 1.82 for the range 12–16 ºC and Q10 = 2.33 for the range 16–20 ºC were calculated. Larval shape was not temperature dependent, suggesting that the smaller larvae found at colder temperatures reflect a slowing of larval development, rather than physiological damage by temperature resulting in abnormal larval development. Temperature is one of the most important environmental factors controlling development in marine invertebrates, and thus likely plays a critical in recruitment dynamics. The temperature thermal tolerance of fertilisation and early larval development in Paphies ventricosa was examined to understand the role of temperature in early larval recruitment success. Fertilisation was examined across a thermal gradient of 10.5 to 30 ºC in an aluminium heat block. Fertilisation was considered successful by microscopic observance of the breakdown of the germinal vesicle, and the appearance of the fertilisation envelope and polar body. The thermal tolerance of development was examined across a thermal gradient of 8.0 to 25.5 ºC in an aluminium heat block at 2, 15, 22, and 37 h post-fertilisation. Fixed samples were examined using light microscopy and classified into the developmental stages of unfertilised, fertilised, embryonic (2-64 cell embryos), blastula, trochophore, veliger, and abnormal. There was a significant effect of temperature on the fertilisation success which ranged from 4.6% to 46.7%. Fertilisation was > 30% successful between 16.0 and 21.0 ºC, and was successful beyond the natural temperature range of the species. P. ventricosa larva were tolerant to temperatures beyond the naturally occurring temperatures during spawning/development periods, but were most successful around 15 ºC. While temperature is important in the recruitment of marine invertebrate larvae, feed availability is also crucial, and often thought to be more important in overall larval development. The combined effects of temperature (12, 16, and 20 ºC) and feed concentration (1:1 mixed algal diet of Tetraselmis chui and Isochrysis galbana; 1,000, 10,000, and 20,000 cells ml-1) were examined in P. ventricosa larvae over 17 days. There was found to be significant combine effect of sampling day, temperature, and feed concentration on larval shell length. By 17-d post-fertilisation, the combined effect of feed concentration on larvae in each temperature became more apparent. Unlike the results of Chapter 3 when larvae were fed a single species (T. chui) diet at 10,000 cells ml-1, larvae reared at the colder temperatures had the largest shell lengths by 17-d post-fertilisation. At 17-d fertilisation, larvae at 12 ºC grew best when fed 20,000 cells ml-1, and 16 and 20 ºC grew best at 10,000 and 1,000 cells ml-1, respectively. Overall, the results of this research fill in many gaps in our knowledge about the life history of Paphies ventricosa. In particular, the reproduction of the local Oreti Beach population and the early larval ecology, with implications for both the northern and southern populations, have been explored in depth. This is the first study of its kind for many of its components, including the detailed microscopic (both scanning electron and light microscopy) examination and description of the early larval stages of toheroa, and the identification of the fertilisation and thermal development windows in the species. In addition, it is the first study in toheroa to examine the combined effects of temperature and feed concentration. The present study has greater implications in regards to other bivalves of similar distributions and habitats, and provides insight into the conservation and management of the species.

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  • Seismic resistant design of base isolated multistorey structures

    Andriono, Takim (1989)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    The Base Isolation technique and its benefits in reducing the transmitted earthquake energy into a structure has gained increasing recognition during the last two decades. This recognition is indicated by the application of Base Isolation systems to a large number of bridges, several multistorey buildings and some power plants in countries which have high seismic risk. Unfortunately, the currently available design procedures, especially for multistorey structures, seem inadequate and too restrictive and as a result present practice still relies upon a series of deterministic time history analyses which are not only impractical for design purposes but appear unable to give the designer a clear insight into the seismic behaviour of the multistory structure. This research is carried out to investigate in more detail the effects of various structural parameters and ground motion characteristics on the seismic response of Base Isolated multistorey structures. It also reviews the shortcomings of the current design methods. The results are then used to develop two simplified analysis methods for practical design. The first method which is called the Code-Type approach can be used to accurately estimate the inertia forces, not only at the level of the isolation devices but throughout the height of the multistorey structure. It is recommended for use as a preliminary design tool or even a final design tool for simple Base Isolated multistorey structures. The second procedure which is based on the Component Mode Synthesis method is suggested for final design purposes of more complex Base Isolated multistorey structures. This method enables the designer to evaluate the effects of the isolation devices on the contribution of each mode of vibration to the total response of the structure.

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