340 results for Conference item, Unitec Research Bank

  • Elevated enclaves – Living roof biodiversity enhancement through prosthetic habitats

    Davies, Renee; Simcock, Robyn; Ussher, Graham; Toft, Richard; Boult, Martin; deGroot, Cris (2010-12-01)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    Living roofs offer an opportunity to bring conservation into a contemporary context integrated within urban landscapes. Once neglected and under-utilized roof landscapes can now become biodiverse enclaves of indigenous flora and fauna. The microhabitat variables required for lizards, including temperature, humidity, refuge/shelter and prey, on New Zealand’s first fully indigenous (a plant or animal which occurs naturally in NZ) (Department of Conservation 2000) (4) extensive living roof were studied over three years. Temperature and humidity data from a known lizard site was used to assess the suitability of the living roof in conjunction with a comparison of insects monitored on the living roof and a literature review of lizard diet. This data provided a team of ecologists, landscape architects and product designers with the parameters needed to develop, prototype and field-test a prosthetic habitat that provides enhanced conditions on the living roof for lizards. Results indicate a New Zealand indigenous extensive living roof plant community can provide the basic microhabitat variables required to support lizards with the exception of humidity. Although existing vegetation will provide refuge from predators and modifies temperature and humidity, the designed prosthetic habitat creates humid micro-sites (refuges), allowing a trial translocation of native skinks.

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  • Learning to play jazz: Adaptive community leadership for turbulent times

    Malcolm, Margy-Jean (2010)

    Conference item
    Unitec

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  • Changing from Learning Stories to Learning Notes

    Blaiklock, Ken (2011-10-01)

    Conference item
    Unitec

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  • Perception of barriers to career progression by women engineers and engineering students

    Fernando, Achela (2011-01-01)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    Although the common view that engineering is best suited for men is changing, there is anecdotal evidence suggesting gender imbalance in the engineering industry. Efforts take place throughout New Zealand to encourage participation and career progression of females in engineering. These occur through the formation and activities of societies such as Women in Engineering(WIE) in NZ Universities and provision of support by Institution of Professional Engineers of New Zealand(IPENZ). These enable networking opportunities and celebrate achievements of women engineers. However despite these, a small sample of female engineers revealed that they feel the presence of more barriers to them than for their male counterparts to be able to accomplish in the profession. This in turn may discourage prospective students who value a good balance between their role as an engineer, mother and a home-maker. A survey was conducted to assess the perception by female engineers/engineering students of these barriers, and how prepared the engineering industries/educational institutes are to cater for the specific needs of a woman as she progresses through the career, balancing the familial responsibilities. Based on findings some measures are proposed to encourage female participation and retention in engineering industry; implementing them can be invaluable in preventing the loss of highly skilled engineers to the industry especially when a young female engineer chooses family over engineering work – either by changing her career path to obtain more flexible working conditions or by stopping work all together. Both of these scenarios are equally detrimental to the individual and the industry.

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  • Dictating participation: What choice do the targets of empowerment have?

    Naqvi, Munawwar (2004-07-01)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    Under the participatory approach it is advocated that the role of state as initiators and managers of development projects should be minimal, this paper argues that where state intervention is declining for various political and economic reasons, this role is now increasingly being played by the larger Non-Governmental Development Organisations who provide and/or source funds for development projects and disburse them to ground NGOs. The data collected suggests that the ground NGOs seeking funds for ‘customised’ and locally designed projects, developed through the needs assessed by dedicated participatory approaches, often end up bidding for ‘mass-produced’ development projects available with the larger NGOs and development funding intermediaries. This occurs because of the ground NGOs’ need to be institutionally functional and viable for the communities they serve or represent. This suggests that the modes of communication between ground NGOs their funding partners and their beneficiary communities reflect the nature of participation, indicating it is moving away from ‘community agency’ model (proposed by Lyons et al 2001, pp 273-288) and is shifting towards an apparently new ‘involvement’ model, in which the larger NGOs and development funding intermediaries are evolving as pseudo-state intervening entities, controlling development activity through various forms of financial decisions flowing into the funded projects. Because of this shift, certain modifications are suggested to Lyons’ (2001) analysis of the relationship between the changing role of national government and the nature of participation in terms of two typical, ideal type models of participatory development at two ends of a continuum – the first is the ‘community agency’ model characterizing empowerment paradigm which involves grassroots structures, decentralizing control, and decision making to civil society and is believed to create self awareness and the transformation of society through empowerment. The other end of a continuum represents the ‘involvement’ model, under which development projects are initiated and managed by the state. Friedland’s (2001) distinction between two types of societal integration (Social integration, operating through normative consensus grounded in communicative action and concerning the actors of the lifeworld [Habermas, 1981,1987] and System integration effected by the instrumental steering of decisions by institutional sources of money and political power) is used to critique the extent of empowerment that ‘participatory development’ practice has delivered to the developing communities being integrated into the wider (perhaps global) economy.

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  • Assessing performance: What if there is no wrong and no right?

    Marshall, Steven (2009-09)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    Performance assessing: What if there are no wrongs and no rights? What happens when you ask your students to employ fundamental theories, concepts and techniques in practice-based settings to develop their overall artistic growth through experiential exploration of the creative process? So you give them the tools to be accurate, the technique to be competent and the license to be creative! In performing and screen arts we deal on a daily basis with students working collaboratively to create work that is original and often pushes the boundaries. We find ourselves as assessors conflicted by the fact that their brief is so wide that we often struggle to categorise what we are witnessing! A rigorous approach to the performance project as a whole is the the key. This involves multiple levels of competency for the student to demonstrate throughout the whole project, connection points with supervisors, and a multi-faceted assessment structure which includes an expert panel to ensure that every student is treated as the individual that they are. In this session a panel of assessors from the department will present our take on assessing students who are allowed to copy from their peers, rely on others input to their work and where there is not always a right or a wrong.

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  • Multi-model forecasting: Using gene expression programming to develop explicit equations for rainfall-runoff modelling combinations

    Fernando, Achela; Abrahart, Robert; Shamseldin, Asaad (2009)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    Two previous studies have evaluated eight multi-model forecasting strategies that combined hydrological forecasts for contrasting catchments: the River Ouse in Northern England and the Upper River Wye in Central Wales. The level and discharge inputs that were combined comprised a mixed set of independent forecasts produced using different modelling methodologies. Earlier multi-model combination approaches comprised: arithmetic-averaging, a probabilistic method in which the best model from the last time step is used to generate the current forecast, two different neural network operations, two different soft computing methodologies, a regression tree solution and instance-based learning. The nature and properties of past combination functions was not however explored and no theoretical outcome to support subsequent improvements resulted. This paper presents a pair of counterpart mathematical equations that were evolved in GeneXproTools 4.0: a powerful software package that is used to perform symbolic regression operations using gene expression programming. The results suggest that simple mathematical equations can be used to perform efficacious multi-model combinations; that similar mathematical solutions can be developed to fulfil different hydrological modelling requirements; and that the procedure involved produces mathematical outcomes that can be explained in terms of minimalist problem-solving strategies.

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  • Connecting communities in New Zealand: Assessing outcomes for novice ICT users

    Williams, Jocelyn; Sligo, Frank; Wallace, Catherine (2003-10)

    Conference item
    Unitec

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  • Mentoring in language and culture on-line

    Brown, T. Pascal; Panko, Mary (2000-06)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    A mentor can 'stimulate the construction of the student's autonomy' (Freire 1998), empower people to think more positively about themselves and increase their network of contacts (McKenzie 1995, Jeruchin and Shapiro 1992). But few professional or non-qualified migrants with English as a Second or Other Language (ESOL) have a mentor who can support and guide them into work, assist in extending their network or help them improve their English language skills. Many also are not unable to enrol in classroom based English language course for a variety of reasons. Therefore there is often a delay, sometimes of many years, in their communicating in English and finding fulfilling employment. One possible solution is the World Wide Web where a virtual mentor can be established to support migrants to fulfil their social and employment aspirations. This paper reports on an internet site that mentors, and teaches language and culture, to ESOL members on-line. Issues of design heuristics are also raised.

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  • Communication - The weft in the loom of inter-disciplinary studies

    Monteiro, Sylila; Meldrum, Ray (2002-12)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    Boyer's (1990) scholarship of integration advocates making connections across disciplines, and placing the specialities in larger contexts. Schon (1995) adds that 'in the swampy lowlands (of the real world), problems are messy and confusing and incapable of technical solution'. This paper describes an innovative approach to teaching communication that is integrated with other disciplines and is focussed on the messiness of real world scenarios. UNITEC's new Diploma in Applied Technology includes three generic courses – Communication and Customer Services, Critical Thinking and Problem Solving, and Health Safety and Professional Ethics, delivered as an integrated block. This approach gives primacy to learning that is student-centred, authentic, integrated, problem focussed, project based and collaborative. It requires a change in mindsets for both teacher and student, as it is a radical deviation from traditional methods of delivery. In their own words, students begin by feeling 'lost in space', but end up 'learning to think', 'seeing how different things are linked' and 'learning about the real world',

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  • How much is too much? A review of the literature concerning the management of visitors to national parks and protected areas

    Simpson, Ken (2003-12)

    Conference item
    Unitec

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  • Bringing the NZDipBus on-line: A case study

    Malcolm, Pam (2000)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    This paper examines the processes that have been undertaken at UNITEC over the last two years to incorporate quality on-line learning into the NZ Diploma in Business programme. In Semester 2 1998 150 Computer Concepts was developed as an on-line course. The successful development of the course was due to the combined efforts of an instructional designer, two web programmers, a graphic designer and the course lecturer. This course was very costly to produce. As one of UNITEC's vision statements is to have "a flexible learning environment characterised by innovation in teaching and the use of education technology" we realised that a more cost-effective manner of presenting course material on-line was necessary. Various course authoring tools were evaluated and BlackBoard CourseInfo was chosen as the preferred software. By the end of Semester 1 2000 all NZ Diploma in Business courses offered at UNITEC had an on-line presence. The content of the courses differs but all are presented in the same manner under the BlackBoard CourseInfo shell. This paper describes why BlackBoard CourseInfo was selected as the authoring tool and how lecturers have so quickly become proficient in the use of BlackBoard CourseInfo. The methods in which lecturers and students use BlackBoard CourseInfo are presented in this paper as well as advice for other NZ Diploma in Business lecturers who are considering offering courses on-line.

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  • How can we help students succeed with on-line courses?

    Malcolm, Pam (2000)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    All New Zealand Diploma in Business courses offered at UNITEC now have an on-line, web-based presence. This has therefore changed the way that courses are delivered. The manner in which students make use of the on-line courses differs from student to student and from course to course. With the increasing number of courses being offered on-line various issues have arisen for students and lecturers. This paper examines some of these issues. In Semester 2 1999 and Summer School 1999/2000 students were asked their opinions on an on-line course that had been developed for them as a teaching and learning resource and 132 responses were received. The results of this survey are presented in this paper and recommendations provided as to how on-line courses can be improved to enhance student learning. The methods that we as educators can use to help students determine if their style of learning "fits" the on-line learning method are described as not all students are comfortable using an on-line learning environment. The manner in which on-line learning is introduced to students is very important for the successful implementation of the course. This paper concludes by describing some successful models that have been used at UNITEC.

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  • Managing expectations of international and kiwi students: A challenge for beyond 2003!

    Sherry, Carol; Bhat, Ravi; Beaver, Bob; Ling, Anthony (2003)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    This study assesses students perceptions of services experienced at UNITEC, Auckland New Zealand. The questionnaire used in the survey at UNITEC was based on the SERVQUAL scale that contains 20 service attributes, grouped together into five dimensions, Tangibles, Reliability, Responsiveness, Assurance and Empathy. The study found a significant difference between students expectations of what an "Excellent tertiary institution" should offer in the way of services and the students perceptions of the services being offered at UNITEC. A significant difference was also found between the perceptions of local students and international students in all five dimensions with the international students perceptions of services being lower than the local students.

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  • An academic managing an IT project using construction knowledge

    Boon, John (2001-10)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    The author is a construction project manager with considerable experience who became an academic, teaching in the area of construction management about nine years ago. Since then he has widened his academic interests to embrace project management as a generic process. In late 1999 the author, by now Dean and a member of the senior management team at UNITEC, was placed in charge of the installation of a new student management IT system in the institute. This paper summarizes the experience and considers the extent to which theoretical knowledge and previous experience in managing projects in the construction industry helped the author meet this challenge.

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  • Tailoring and customising financial performance reporting to suit the needs of different management teams and business units

    Beechey, John (2001-06)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    There is a school of thought that advances the proposition that "traditional" financial accounting measures are insufficient to track how a business is moving towards its strategic objectives. Traditional accounting does not link physical measures and profit. Nor does it identify the relationships between the business drivers, nor does it differentiate between leading and lagged indicators. New techniques, such as the balanced scorecard, active learning and benchmarking, are more powerful and forward looking. We cannot subscribe totally to the view that "traditional" accounting is dead, if only because legislation and stewardship require accounts to be produced. The newer techniques should supplement "management" accounts, not replace them. Before we can develop management accounts (accounting) further, current standards of "traditional" accounting presentation need to be addressed in order to get the basics right as a sound foundation

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  • The next fifty years: Eco-cyborg Chandigarh

    Bogunovich, Dushko (1999-01)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    There are good and bad things about Le Corbusier's plans and designs for Chandigarh. As we face the environmental and social uncertainties of the 21st century, it may be more productive to focus at the good things. The good things are; a well-intended utopian social vision, trust in the power of technology to make life better on mass scale, an understanding of the critical relationship between human and environmental health, and faith in the capacity of good design and planning to bring all these together. The paper proposes, that 50 years later, Chandigarh - and Indian urbanism altogether - need vision and optimism more than ever. Urban problems in India are somewhat different in nature, and certainly larger in scale. The issue of ecological sustainability of cities is pressing at all levels - Chandigarh, India. world. Urban sustainability is bound to become one of the key planetary issues in the next century. The encouraging side of this prospect is that the knowledge and the technological means to deal with urban ecology are abundant. There is hardly a better place in all of India than the existing Corbusian matrix of Chandigarh to start a pilot project on ecologically sound urban development. Corb's model of the city as a machine, just as his analogy with human organism, may be obsolete and crude, but they are not totally misplaced. The latest in the theory of sustainable urban development suggests that cities should indeed be viewed as organisms, with their metabolism integrated with the surrounding ecosystem. The latest in design theory suggests that architecture, and technology in general, are moving towards artificially intelligent and ecologically benign solutions. Cities of the 21st century will be neither machines, nor organisms, They will be ecologically friendly cyborgs. The urban eco-cyborg idea implies not only the mix of the electronic (digital) with the organic (biological), but also a peculiar mix of high-tech with low-tech. The India that is nearing year 2000 has both. Here lies another great historical chance for Chandigarh.

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  • The development of a flexible learning mode for the final year of the Bachelor of Construction

    Birchmore, Roger (1998-10)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    This paper describes the conversion of a conventional Lecture/Tutorial delivery mode of a final year Construction degree, to a mode comprising short, intensive blocks of Campus based delivery separated by long periods of student directed study. The driving forces behind the conversion are discussed. The developmental procedures are described and an outline of the delivery format is presented. The potential advantages and disadvantages are considered from the student and the deliverers' perspectives. Experiences of delivering the course are given.

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  • Evaluation - Measuring your performance to plan & evaluate the effectiveness of your measurement tools

    Beechey, John (1999)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    Performance measurement and management is one of the most significant developments in the sphere of people management. Within organisations, it has become a key business process. It is viewed as a major lever for achieving the culture .change needed to enable organisations to respond to the challenges of the business environment of the 1990s. Performance measurement and management is a set of processes for developing a shared understanding among employees of what needs to be done to enable an organisation to achieve its strategic goals. These processes include developing appropriate performance measures, and managing and developing people using approaches that are likely to produce continued success. Performance measurement and management is about the "how” as well as the "what" of performance. It is not about "quick fixes" and "panaceas”. It is about developing a culture of confidence and trust among all employees, which reinforces both team and individual achievement. Success stems from demonstrable commitment from the organisation's senior level and from investment - of time and resources - into developing and training employees to deliver good performance. Most organisations have some sort of process or framework to help measure and manage the performance of their employees. There is a growing awareness of the need to move away from the retrospective top-down annual appraisals to a forward-looking and two-way approach to communicating objectives, and so delivering performance for the business by valuing the contribution of all staff irrespective of status or job title. The design of any performance measurement system should reflect the basic operating assumption of the organisations it supports. If the organisation changes and the measurement system doesn't, the latter will be at least ineffective or, more likely, counter productive. Traditional measurement systems tell an organisation where it stands in its efforts to achieve goals but not how it got there or, even more important, what it should do differently. The challenge is to raise awareness of, and encourage dialogue about, performance as part of the daily business of an organisation. It is a matter not of only defining, measuring and managing performance, but of planning development activity and developing problem solving approaches to meet objectives. This approach relies on the ability of all employees to work as a team to common objectives and with a common sense of ownership and success.

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  • Profit sharing in the Big 8 firms: Accommodating the rainmakers

    Beechey, John; Baskerville-Morley, Rachel (2003-12)

    Conference item
    Unitec

    Further to a consideration of existing research on income allocation processes in CA partnerships, this report answers the questions: how was income allocated in the Big 8 and their predecessor firms in New Zealand, and why is stability for income allocation systems compromised by the need for these systems to accommodate the 'rainmakers'? The narratives of the views of survey and oral history interviewees participants on income allocation is complemented by a case study comparing and contrasting two firm changes, illustrated by partner narratives from two firms: Coopers & Lybrand and Deloittes Haskins Sells. The variety of income allocation models is attributed to the necessity for partners to undertake multiple roles in each partnership: "professional firms live or die by the rainmakers". It will be suggested that the previous advocacy of agency perspectives and theory of the firm theoretical perspectives do not provide a close fit with the data from this study. Instead, a population ecology approach (as adopted in organisational theory) is invoked to explain the constant flux in the choice of income allocation models in accounting partnerships

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