833 results for Doctoral, 2016

  • The impact of intellectual capital on firm performance among R&D engaging firms

    Ariff, Arifatul Husna Mohd (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This thesis investigates the impact of aggregate intellectual capital (IC), and its elements, human capital, structural capital and tangible capital, on firm performance. In addition, the study also examines the impact of past research and development (R&D) activity on the relationship between IC and firm performance. The study employs the original and modified Value Added Intellectual Coefficient (VAICTM) models to measure IC. Firm performance is measured from two different perspectives: market and financial. The study uses a sample of 1,328 firm-year observations drawn from multinational firms which engaged in R&D activity over the period 2006-2013 and were listed on the U.S. stock exchanges. Using ordinary least squares regression, the study confirms that aggregate IC has a significant positive impact on both the market and financial performance of firms. Human capital has no significant impact on market performance, but it has a significant positive impact on financial performance. Structural capital and tangible capital each have a significant positive influence on both the market and financial performance of firms. In addition, the study finds that past R&D activity has a significant positive impact on the relationship between aggregate IC and both market and financial performance. However, the study finds mixed results for the role of past R&D activity on the relationship between the IC elements and firm performance. The study contributes to the existing literature by providing empirical evidence on the impact of IC on firm performance among multinational R&D engaging firms. The study also adds to the literature by providing empirical evidence on the role of R&D activity in influencing the relationship between IC and firm performance and thus enhances the current understanding of the role of IC and R&D. In addition, the study contributes to the methodology by proposing a modification to the original VAIC model and empirically tests the resulting modified VAIC model. The study thus provides empirical evidence of the impact of IC on the market performance and financial performance of firms. This evidence should be useful to firms in developing their IC and R&D policies, to users of financial statements in evaluating the benefits from IC among R&D engaging firms, and also to accounting standard setters in identifying the information on IC that should be included in financial reports.

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  • Epidemiology and production effects of leptospirosis in New Zealand sheep : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy In Veterinary Sciences at Massey University, Manawatu, New Zealand

    Vallée, Emilie (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

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  • “You Bring It, We’ll Bring It Out” Becoming a Soldier in the New Zealand Army : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Social Anthropology at Massey University Manawatū, New Zealand.

    Harding, Nina (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    The transition from civilian to soldier is a process of identity acquisition. Based on participant-observation, this thesis follows a cohort of new soldiers through the first year and a half of their careers in the New Zealand Army, from their first day of Basic Training to their first overseas deployment. Both the Army as an institution and its individual soldiers are explicitly self-reflexive, and I use not only academic theory but also soldiers’ own theories of identity and identity acquisition to make sense of the experience of becoming a soldier. I show that although recruits undergo change in becoming soldiers, they simultaneously retain pre-service identities. Using Pierre Bourdieu’s theory of practice, I argue that civilians join the Army because of a shared “primary habitus”, a pre-existing identification with action, productivity and continual self-improvement through facing challenges that forms recruits’ earliest embodied understandings of themselves. The relationship between this “practical” habitus and the new soldier habitus to be acquired is key to understanding the civilian-soldier transition. While civilians draw on and thus fulfil the primary practical habitus in becoming soldiers during initial training periods, once socialised they find the Army much less challenging, and therefore may find that their need to be involved in meaningful action is not met. Although the practical habitus is behind and can make sense of the cohort’s actions, it is a mode of identity that has not often been recognised as such by academics, due to the fact that they do not share it. However, I show that it is more important in generating soldiers’ practice than the modes of identity that are usually employed to understand them: gender, sexuality, ethnicity and nationality. Therefore, I argue that anthropologists should not limit analysis to traditional axes of identity.

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  • Exploring New Zealand’s Rural Education Activities Programmes (REAPs): Social capital in a lifelong learning and community development context : A thesis presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctorate of Education at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Morrison, Derek Ryan (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    This research explored the extent to which social capital is an approach used by New Zealand’s Rural Education Activities Programmes (REAPs) to contribute to rural education. Social capital was defined for the purposes of this study as the resource residing in networks of individuals, based on mutual trust and shared social norms, which can be brokered and mobilised to achieve social benefits, particularly in the application of knowledge and skills. A conceptual framework lays out four key elements from this definition which were investigated: networks, trust, social norms, and brokerage. Given the lack of published material on REAPs and their work, a primarily qualitative design was utilised. Set within a constructivist epistemology and interpretive phenomenological methodology, in-depth interviews with REAP managers and questionnaires for REAP learners were used to collect data. The aim was to explore the lived experiences of these two REAP groups to identify their views on how REAPs operate so that those views could be considered within the social capital framework above. An inductive-deductive-inductive analysis approach was used to maximise the extent to which findings reflected participant language. Findings from both REAP managers and learners supported the strong presence of the four social capital elements in REAP activity. In many cases the qualitative themes were closely related, both within and across the four social capital elements. Both strong (social) and weak (institutional) forms of trust were described as influencing learner participation in networks, where REAPs played a role in brokering that participation within similar (bonded) and differing (bridged) networks. REAPs made use of trusted relationships and valued-based decision making to gain local community and cultural knowledge to ensure the relevance of responsive learning activities. The result was enhanced confidence and identity of learners to take part in other social activities, including further learning and collective action. Lived examples of these elements supported a social capital approach that fit well with the lifelong learning and community development processes outlined by the REAP mandate. These processes were defined holistically to consider the integration of individuals’ beliefs, viewpoints, and behaviours as much as skills and knowledge. The explored social capital approach within lifelong learning and community development contexts, yields clear recommendations for Government, REAPs, and partner organisations. Flexibility, values/identity-based education, and closing network gaps to facilitate innovation come through as REAP social capital practices that could inform policy and partnerships across the whole of the education sector. Further research is needed to more closely consider the complex relationships of the identified social capital themes. In terms of emergent themes, a deeper exploration of innovation produced through brokerage within REAP activity is highlighted as a key area of research for future.

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  • Organising Therapists’ Emotional-Social Skills: Are Therapists that Different? : A thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Clinical Psychology at Massey University, Palmerston North New Zealand

    Marwick, Andreas (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    Wampold and Imel (2015) argue that therapeutic outcomes may be more dependent on variables associated with therapists than treatment systems. An element of these therapist variables include the emotional and social skills of therapists, however, to date, little has been done to investigate the relationships between these therapy factors. One exception to this is pilot research conducted by my supervisors, their students, and myself (Harvey, Marwick, Baken, Bimler, & Dickson, 2016). This thesis aims to replicate and extend on this pilot research as to better understand therapists’ emotional and social skills in practice. Using three complementary approaches including thematic analysis of therapist transcripts, a date-specific literature review, and revision of foundational research, Harvey et al.’s original pool of emotional and social skills was revised and extended. Subsequently, using a statistical method for mapping psychological constructs, therapists’ emotional practices were transformed into a ‘map’ with three spatial dimensions, which was generally supported by comparative reliability checks including a validation study with a foreign-language sample. Finally, the nature of emotional practice was further investigated by administering a questionnaire of emotional practice items to 79 therapists. From this, eight salient practice constructs were identified. Statistical links were also found between these and both demographic data and a modified measure of the therapeutic relationship. Furthermore, using Q-analysis, a general consensus of responding was found between therapists’ emotional response patterns and as a result, a tentative pathway to therapists’ practice styles was developed. From these findings important research and clinical applications are apparent.

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  • Wellness Protocol: An Integrated Framework for Ambient Assisted Living : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy In Electronics, Information and Communication Systems At School of Engineering and Advanced Technology, Massey University, Manawatu Campus, New Zealand

    Ghayvat, Hemant (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    Smart and intelligent homes of today and tomorrow are committed to enhancing the security, safety and comfort of the occupants. In the present scenario, most of the smart homes Protocols are limited to controlled activities environments for Ambient Assisted Living (AAL) of the elderly and the convalescents. The aim of this research is to develop a Wellness Protocol that forecasts the wellness of any individual living in the AAL environment. This is based on wireless sensors and networks that are applied to data mining and machine learning to monitor the activities of daily living. The heterogeneous sensor and actuator nodes, based on WSNs are deployed into the home environment. These nodes generate the real-time data related to the object usage and other movements inside the home, to forecast the wellness of an individual. The new Protocol has been designed and developed to be suitable especially for the smart home system. The Protocol is reliable, efficient, flexible, and economical for wireless sensor networks based AAL. According to consumer demand, the Wellness Protocol based smart home systems can be easily installed with existing households without any significant changes and with a user-friendly interface. Additionally, the Wellness Protocol has extended to designing a smart building environment for an apartment. In the endeavour of smart home design and implementation, the Wellness Protocol deals with large data handling and interference mitigation. A Wellness based smart home monitoring system is the application of automation with integral systems of accommodation facilities to boost and progress the everyday life of an occupant.

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  • Facial Expressions and Context Effects : A Thesis Presented in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of of Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology at Massey University, Albany, New Zealand

    Xu, Hui (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    It is common and important for us to recognise facial expressions in our daily life. Research on recognition of facial expressions was often carried out using isolated faces, which leads us to ignore accompanied contextual information (e.g. vocal sound, body language). Chapter 4 used bodily and vocal expressions as contextual stimuli to investigate whether there are context effects on recognition of all six basic facial expressions. The results generally showed that recognition of facial expressions benefits from congruent contextual stimuli, while recognition of facial expressions is impaired by incongruent contextual stimuli. Chapter 5 examined whether the observed context effects vary with the level of intensity of facial expressions. The results showed that context effects are influenced by the level of intensity of facial expressions and revealed the opposite trend of the magnitude of facilitation effects and interference effects as level of intensity of facial expressions was increased. The following chapter 6 investigated another important aspect of context effects, that is, whether attentional resources influence the observed context effects. The results showed that the magnitude of context effects was reduced when the perceptual load of task-relevant tasks was increased, at least for context effects from bodily expressions to the recognition of disgusted facial expressions. All the data collected showed commonalities and differences in the pattern of context effects on recognition of facial expressions. Future studies might concentrate on the differences among these facial expressions to explore whether there exists a consistent pattern of context effects for all six facial expressions or to refine the existing models regarding recognition of facial expressions to better predict context effects for facial expression recognition.

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  • Bayesian Modelling of Direct and Indirect Effects of Marine Reserves on Fishes : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Statistics at Massey University, Albany, New Zealand.

    Smith, Adam Nicholas Howard (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    This thesis reviews and develops modern advanced statistical methodology for sampling and modelling count data from marine ecological studies, with specific applications to quantifying potential direct and indirect effects of marine reserves on fishes in north eastern New Zealand. Counts of snapper (Pagrus auratus: Sparidae) from baited underwater video surveys from an unbalanced, multi-year, hierarchical sampling programme were analysed using a Bayesian Generalised Linear Mixed Model (GLMM) approach, which allowed the integer counts to be explicitly modelled while incorporating multiple fixed and random effects. Overdispersion was modelled using a zero-inflated negative-binomial error distribution. A parsimonious method for zero inflation was developed, where the mean of the count distribution is explicitly linked to the probability of an excess zero. Comparisons of variance components identified marine reserve status as the greatest source of variation in counts of snapper above the legal size limit. Relative densities inside reserves were, on average, 13-times greater than outside reserves. Small benthic reef fishes inside and outside the same three reserves were surveyed to evaluate evidence for potential indirect effects of marine reserves via restored populations of fishery-targeted predators such as snapper. Sites for sampling were obtained randomly from populations of interest using spatial data and geo-referencing tools in R—a rarely used approach that is recommended here more generally to improve field-based ecological surveys. Resultant multispecies count data were analysed with multivariate GLMMs implemented in the R package MCMCglmm, based on a multivariate Poisson lognormal error distribution. Posterior distributions for hypothesised effects of interest were calculated directly for each species. While reserves did not appear to affect densities of small fishes, reserve-habitat interactions indicated that some endemic species of triplefin (Tripterygiidae) had different associations with small-scale habitat gradients inside vs outside reserves. These patterns were consistent with a behavioural risk effect, where small fishes may be more strongly attracted to refuge habitats to avoid predators inside vs outside reserves. The approaches developed and implemented in this thesis respond to some of the major current statistical and logistic challenges inherent in the analysis of counts of organisms. This work provides useful exemplar pathways for rigorous study design, modelling and inference in ecological systems.

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  • Frontiers of decision theory : This dissertation is submitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Economics, School of Economics and Finance (Albany) Massey University

    Pan, Siwen (Addison) (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    The well-known jury paradox – the more demanding the hurdle for conviction is, the more likely it is that a jury will convict an innocent defendant – heavily relies on Bayesian updating. However, with ambiguous information (e.g., a forensic test with accuracy of 60%, or more), standard Bayesian updating becomes invalid, challenging the existence of this paradox. By developing novel theoretical models and by testing their predictions in laboratory settings, this thesis advances our understanding of how individuals process more realistically imprecise measures of information reliability and how this impacts on information aggregation for the group decision-making. Hence, our findings inform the institutional design of collective deliberation, from small to large group decision-making.

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  • A culturally-focused life cycle sustainability assessment: Analysis of forestry value chain options with Māori land owners : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements of Doctor of Philosophy in Life Cycle Management At Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Pizzirani, Stefania Maria (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    The purpose of this research was to 1) explore the potential for the more distinctive representation of Māori culture in Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment (LCSA), and 2) understand the relationship between culturally-focused LCSA and the Māori decisionmaking process. These two interrelated aspects were investigated through participatory engagement with three members of the Ngāti Porou iwi (tribe), and through collaborative development of three forestry LCSA scenarios (radiata pine, rimu, and mānuka). Aligning with principles of kaupapa Māori research, a participatory LCSA methodology approach was created which encapsulated five phases: 1) understand Ngāti Porou aspirations and concerns, 2) co-develop options for forestry scenarios, 3) co-develop and select LCSA indicators (including a cultural indicator), 4) LCSA indicator data collection and modelling, and 5) communication of results. The methodology utilised a mixed methods approach as Stage 1, 2, 3, and 5 are predominantly qualitative while Stage 4 is predominantly quantitative. Culture was represented in the participatory LCSA in two ways. Firstly, a bespoke cultural indicator (Cultural Indicator Matrix) was co-developed to distinctly include culture within LCSA. The Cultural Indicator Matrix was based on and adapted an existing cultural decision-making framework (i.e. the Mauri Model) in order to ensure its capability to represent both Ngāti Porou aspirations and the forestry value chains explored in this research. The Cultural Indicator Matrix was completed by each participant and subjectively measured the impact they perceived each forestry process or product had upon a range of Ngāti Porou aspirations. Secondly, a participatory research approach was utilised that itself made the LCSA process more culturally-focused. The participatory approach relied on active engagement with the research participants throughout the LCSA study, primarily with the utilisation of semi-structured interviews. Such collaborative participatory engagement with the research participants allowed for their cultural input, preferences, and knowledge at each stage of the LCSA process. This research has yielded several original and meaningful results: 1. The Cultural Indicator Matrix is a new culturally-focused mechanism which can be used to support the Māori decision-making process. The participants viewed the Cultural Indicator Matrix as an effective method for gathering community impressions of how potential forestry life cycle processes could impact upon their cultural aspirations. 2. The participants felt the participatory LCSA aspect was crucially important; the open and consistent communication between themselves and the LCSA practitioner provided them with more control, access to information, understanding of the LCSA process, and enhanced their acceptance of the final results. They considered that the results of the culturally-focused LCSA gave them “validation” and “direction”, and justified their interests in pursuing forestry options for their land. 3. The participatory LCSA process led to the identification of a need to formally include a Cultural Compliance process with the LCSA. The Cultural Compliance process is comprised of six cultural components occurring throughout the forestry life cycle. Recognition of these components helps to ensure that appropriate and necessary cultural considerations are taken into account during relevant forestry life cycle processes. It is unlikely that this insight would have been reached if not for the participatory engagement focus of this LCSA research. 4. The development and analysis of three forestry scenarios using a range of sustainability indicators generated distinctive datasets on the life cycles of radiata pine, rimu, and mānuka. As the rimu and mānuka scenarios are particularly underrepresented in forestry-life cycle literature, this research has provided a contribution to knowledge regarding these two forestry options. For the first time, indigenous culture has been represented alongside economic, social, and environmental impacts in LCSA. This comprehensive presentation of results facilitates the decision-making process by providing the decision maker(s) with information about the “big picture”, thus supporting educated and informed decisions. Furthermore, a culturally-focused LCSA approach helps to ensure that culture is not lost during the decision-making process, but rather is an active component. Finally, of critical importance, both the culturally-focused LCSA process and associated results will further enable the recognition cultural groups, including their values and aspirations. The explicit acknowledgement of culture in LCSA will engender more awareness and protection for culture, lessen the isolation and marginalisation of culture, and empower cultural groups to develop and pursue brave choices.

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  • An ecological perspective on the motivational trajectories of high school students learning English in rural areas in Vietnam : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Applied Linguistics at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.

    Pham, Huy Cuong (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    This study explores the motivational trajectories of four students learning English at a rural high school in Southern Vietnam. It draws on a person-in-context relational view of motivation (Ushioda, 2009) as the overarching theoretical framework and uses ecological systems theory (Bronfenbrenner, 1993) as an analytical tool to develop insights into the ways motivation is implicated in a multiplicity of settings and social relationships. Specifically, it aims to identify motivational affordances for these students, the synergistic effects across settings on their language learning motivation, and their motivational trajectories within and across settings and relationships. The study utilises a qualitative case study design, relying primarily on interviews from social practice perspectives and observations. The data collection, spanning approximately one and a half years, comprised two main phases, one on-site and one off-site. In the first phase, data were gathered in different settings, including the school, the participants’ homes as a site for private tuition, and other more informal public spaces such as food stores. In the second phase, Skype interviews and Facebook exchanges were the main means of data collection. The findings suggest that while language affordances were evident in both formal and informal learning settings, students developed diverse individual motivational trajectories. Their motivational constructions resulted from a synergy of environmental and idiosyncratic elements pertinent to their own language learning conditions, social relationships, and personal appraisals of such affordances and learning opportunities. These relationships and students’ agentive use of resources were shaped and reshaped by their interactions with significant others within and across settings. Sociocultural features related to the school systems, local and national education policies, family traditions, cultural values, and future prospects also have synergistic impacts on their L2 motivation. The present study illustrates the value of interpreting the situated and dynamic nature of L2 motivation using an ecological paradigm. It also points to the need to adopt a set of data collection methods, tools, and data sources that diverge from more conventional means to explore L2 motivation. The study offers a fresh theoretical and methodological approach for future research geared towards lifewide adaptive perspectives on English language teaching and learning.

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  • Building community resilience in mine impacted communities : a study on delivery of health services in Papua New Guinea : a thesis presented in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor Of Philosophy in Development Studies at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Kuir-Ayius, Dora Dau (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    The purpose of this study was to explore the building of Community Resilience in mine-impacted communities in Papua New Guinea (PNG). The study aimed to establish the general relationship between community resilience, community capitals and the delivery of health services. It investigated the delivery of health services in three mining communities in PNG to see how these services contribute to or detract from the building of resilience. The study investigated relevant models of community resilience from the literature, and how the way policy functions in PNG can be related to these models. The study also developed a way of quantifying the impact of mining on health service delivery (through the use of community capitals) and the building of resilience in these communities. Furthermore, the thesis develops an indigenous, Melanesian-centric ‘Bilum Framework’ approach to resilience to create greater understanding of how resilience in the mining communities can be strengthened through improved access to health services. Three mining communities were selected as case studies, each representing a different stage of mining: (i) the beginning; (ii) the operational; and, (iii) post-mine closure. A mixed method approach comprising both quantitative and qualitative methods was used to collect data for this study. A survey questionnaire was designed to collect views of community members who accessed health services in their respective communities. Results from the survey questionnaire were converted to proxy indicators and led to the development of a Community Resilience Index (CRI) to provide a measure of resilience in each community. The qualitative research methods included document analysis, semi-structured interviews, and purposive observations. Document analysis was important in reviewing relevant policy documents and other literature to link theories to the experiences of the people while the latter methods contributed to describing people’s encounters in accessing health services. Analysis showed inconsistencies in the levels of resilience in these communities that varied with the stages of mining: both the beginning and post- mine closure stages demonstrated significantly lower levels of community resilience than the operational phase. Findings from the research indicated a lack of access to health services – a key influence in building resilience – is the result a range of factors including insufficient finances, weak sector governance, and the need for infrastructure and transport. The Bilum Framework is proposed as an approach that allows decision-makers to target assistance to strengthen and support specific community capitals and hence more effectively build community resilience in the mining communities in PNG.

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  • Judging Competency A study of in-training evaluation of veterinary students : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Education at Massey University, Manawatū, New Zealand

    Norman, Elizabeth J (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    In-training evaluations are a common but highly criticised method of assessing the competency of veterinary students completing training. They involve assessment of on-going performance in the workplace, performed by the supervisor. They are highly feasible and one of the few ways that a student’s performance in an authentic context can be evaluated. Psychometric research has suggested, however, that in-training evaluations are unreliable, do not discriminate aspects of performance, and do not predict performance on other assessments, casting doubt on the credibility of scores. Research on rater judgement processes suggests, in contrast, that multiple aspects are discriminated and that accounting for context and inferred reasons for behaviour contributes to rater variability. Very little research has considered in-training evaluation in a veterinary context. In a mixed method study this research investigated how well the in-training evaluation used during clinical placements in one veterinary school captured the aspects of student performance it was designed to capture. It explored the supervisor’s view of student performance, and how that related to the dimensions being assessed in in-training evaluation, and to the constructs of competency articulated in frameworks. Complementary research strands involved analysis of semi-structured interviews with supervisors, common factor analysis of in-training evaluation scores, ordinal logistic regression relating factors to overall judgement, and thematic comparisons of findings with competency frameworks. Together, the nature of what supervisors considered, the dimensional structure of scores, and the relationship of dimensions with the overall judgement suggested that the in-training evaluation is both holistic and discriminating, and that important aspects of performance are student engagement and trustworthiness. The aspects captured by the evaluation aligned well with the design of the instrument, and generally well with the veterinary competency frameworks. However, some areas were highlighted where concepts of veterinary competency and the competencies required in different subdisciplines need further consideration by the profession. The findings give insights into the process of judgement of competency by veterinary supervisors that will inform further research. They support some aspects of a validity argument in relation to scoring processes, and inform the design of evaluation instruments by underscoring the construct-relevance of interrelated dimensions.

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  • Testing the relationship between gut permeability, elevation of systemic lipopolysaccharides and chronic disease : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at Massey University, Manawatu, New Zealand

    Gnauck, Anne (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    The aim of my thesis was to test whether an increase in the permeability of the gut is accompanied by an increase in the level of systemic lipopolysaccharides (LPS), also referred to as endotoxin. These two parameters were firstly concurrently determined in healthy women after the treatment with a single dose of aspirin which is thought to temporarily increase the paracellular permeability of the intestine. Gut permeability and the levels of systemic LPS in healthy women were then compared with those in women with Crohn’s disease (CD) as the latter are thought to have chronically elevated paracellular permeability of the gut. Both groups also ingested a high fat drink which is reported to results in the elevation of systemic LPS. In addition, faecal calprotectin, a biomarker of ongoing inflammation in the gut, and LPS-binding protein (LBP), a proposed indirect biomarker for the exposure to LPS in the systemic circulation, were determined both in healthy women and in those with CD. Data indicated that both temporary and chronic increase in the paracellular permeability of the small intestine can be reliably determined by the 3-h excretion of lactulose. Further the combination of levels of faecal calprotectin and 3-h excretion of lactulose and mannitol is the most sensitive tool to distinguish between healthy subjects and those with CD. Hence, it is evident that the combination of those three parameters can be used to assess gut health. In contrast, the current available methods for the direct assessment of the systemic level of LPS/endotoxin i.e. the Limulus Amebocyte Lysate (LAL) assay for the quantification of endotoxin or ELISAs for the quantification of LPS, are not reliable as the former is interfered by constituents of serum and the latter failed to detect LPS from sources other than those provided from the manufacturer of the kit. Hence, studies suggesting that the consumption of high fat meals lead to elevations of systemic endotoxin and those suggesting that levels of systemic endotoxin is associated with the onset of metabolic syndrome are questionable. It is therefore advisable to repeat those studies when accurate methods for the quantification of LPS/endotoxin in the systemic circulation are available.

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  • Acceleration and Gifted Girls : A thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Education at Massey University, Manawatū, New Zealand

    Crawford, Margaret Evelyn (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    This study on Acceleration and Gifted Girls investigates acceleration as an intervention in secondary education within girls’ schools in New Zealand. It explains the extent that acceleration is being used for whom and with what processes in the context of New Zealand single-sex education. It focuses particularly on acceleration. A national survey of single-sex girls’ schools provided a general view of acceleration practices and provisions. Three case studies offered a more in-depth exploration. Findings from this study emphasised that schools are designing and evaluating their provisions for their gifted and talented girls, with an emphasis on personalised learning and an appropriate curriculum. Acceleration is used, typically, as part of a continuum of provisions to challenge students at higher levels than their year level. Timetable flexibility, whole class and individual acceleration, multi-level pathways through NCEA, dual enrolment or full entry at universities are all included in the provisions offered to gifted girls. This study highlighted an association between a school’s culture of learning and the school’s culture of care of gifted and talented students. High levels of satisfaction relating to the ways in which schools provided for gifted and talented girls were expressed by both students and their parents.

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  • Vicarious traumatic exposure among New Zealand health professionals : An exploration of coping strategies and vicarious posttraumatic growth : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the degree of Doctor of Clinical Psychology at Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand

    Manning-Jones, Shekinah Faith (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    The negative effects of working with trauma survivors have been well documented. This thesis provides an exploration of the less researched positive psychological effects of such work, termed vicarious posttraumatic growth (VPTG). Specifically, the research aimed to investigate New Zealand health professionals’ use of coping strategies (social support, self-care, and humour) following vicarious traumatic exposure, how these coping strategies influenced the psychological outcome of vicarious traumatic exposure, and how VPTG related to secondary traumatic stress (STS). It was also of interest whether all types of health professionals coped with, and psychologically reacted to, vicarious traumatic exposure in the same way, or if there were differences between professions. A total of 365 health professionals participated in the current research by completing a quantitative online survey. The final sample consisted of 103 social workers, 76 nurses, 72 counsellors, 70 psychologists, and 44 medical doctors. Humour, self-care, and peer social support were found to be positive predictors of VPTG, while self-care and social support from family and friends were negative predictors of STS. In addition, peer support was found to be a partial mediator of the relationship between vicarious traumatic exposure and STS. Social workers were found to have the highest levels of STS and VPTG, while psychologists were found to have the lowest levels. Regarding coping, generally psychologists and counsellors were found to engage in the highest levels of coping strategies, while nurses and doctors reported the lowest levels. However, the opposite pattern was found for peer support; nurses reported a significantly higher level of peer support than psychologists. Finally, a curvilinear relationship was found between STS and VPTG; moderate levels of STS were associated with the highest levels of VPTG. However, this was only the case among psychologists; among all other professions STS did not correlate with or predict VPTG. Implications of these results are discussed. Investigation into the relationship between humour and VPTG, exploration of coping strategies as mediators, and the systematic investigation of differences between different types of health professionals represent current gaps in the literature. In addition, exploration of the relationship between VPTG and STS represents an under-researched area with mixed results. Therefore, the current research is an important contribution to the current body of literature. It is envisaged that conclusions drawn from this research will have beneficial implications for health care professionals and the organisations they work within.

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  • Livelihood Strategies and Environmental Management Practices in Northern Thailand National Park Communities : A dissertation presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Natural Resource Management at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Phongchiewboon, Aurathai (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    In Northern Thailand, the establishment of national parks is at the forefront of efforts to achieve biodiversity conservation and environmental management while providing socio-economic benefits to society. However, national parks regulations and development interventions have created both opportunities and constraints for the Indigenous hill tribe communities living within the national parks. These communities have, out of necessity, adapted and developed their livelihood strategies and environmental management practices to maintain their socio-economic welfare and ecological sustainability. This study employed Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) as a mixed qualitative research strategy to investigate the livelihood strategies and environmental management practices in Doi Suthep-Pui, Doi Inthanon, and Ob Luang National Parks in Northern Thailand. The main research methods used were interviews, observation, and document analysis to support data that gained from the PRA methods. The aim of this study is to gain insight into the livelihood strategies and environmental management practices of six Indigenous hill tribe communities living in the parks. Interviews were conducted with villagers, national park officials, academics, and representatives from non-government organisations and tourism agencies. The interview data was also analysed to investigate how co-management initiatives and livelihood development projects by national parks officials and external organisations influence Indigenous communities’ livelihood strategies. It was found that the livelihood strategies of the Indigenous hill tribe communities encompass a diverse combination of activities related to their social and ecological relationships in order to ensure sustained socio-economic well-being. Communities engage in sustainable agricultural practices, community-based natural resource management activities and community-based ecotourism enterprises as their significant livelihood strategies. However, while there has been some consultation, co-management, and collaborative policy-making between government and local communities, further improvement of transparency, consistency and accountability is needed. It is argued that greater community empowerment and participation in natural resource management decisions is crucial to enhance both sustainable livelihoods and environmental conservation efforts within Northern Thailand’s national parks.

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  • Dynamics of pyroclastic density currents : : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Earth Sciences at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Breard, Eric Christophe Pascal (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    Pyroclastic density currents (PDCs) are the most dangerous mass flows on Earth. Yet they remain poorly understood because internal measurements and observations are hitherto non-existent. In this thesis, the first measurements and views into experimental large-scale PDCs synthesized by “column collapse” provide insights into the internal structure, transport and emplacement dynamics of dense PDCs or pyroclastic flows. While from an outside point of view, PDCs resemble dilute gravity currents, the internal flow structure shows longitudinal and vertical complexities that greatly influence the PDCs‟ propagation and emplacement dynamics. Internal velocity and concentration profiles from direct observations provide the evidence of an unforeseen intermediate zone that plays an important role into the transfer of mass from the ash-cloud to the underflow. The intermediate zone is a “dense suspension” where particle cluster in bands to form mesoscale structures. These reduce particle drag and yield an extreme sedimentation rate of particles onto the newly-formed underflow. These findings call into question the existing paradigm of a continuous vertical concentration profile to explain the formation of massive layers and an underflow from ash-clouds. Instead, a sharp concentration jump occurs between the intermediate zone, with concentrations of the order of few volume percent, and the underflow, with concentrations of c.45%. PDCs were found to be composed of 4 main zones identified as the underflow, and the ash-cloud head, body and wake. Following the evolution of the PDC structure over time allows the formation of a complex ignimbrite deposit sequence to be uncovered, reproducing experimentally the “standard ignimbrite sequence” reported from field studies. Experiments revealed that each flow zone deposited the particulate load under contrasting emplacement timescales (spanning up to 5 orders of magnitude), which are primarily controlled by the concentration of the zone. The ash-cloud head is the most dynamic zone of the PDC, where proximally mass is intensively transferred downward and feeds the underflow front, while at all times, the finest particles are entrained upward and feed the wake through detachment of large Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities. Subsequently, kinematic coupling between the moving underflow and overriding ash-cloud leads to a forced-supercriticality, preferentially affecting the head. The wide range of particle sizes and densities yield a spectrum of gas-transport behaviours ranging from a poorly coupled and rapid-sedimenting mesoscale regime up to a homogeneously coupled long-lived suspending regime. Internal velocity and concentration profiles illuminate the role of boundary velocity, which yields forced-acceleration of the ash-cloud. Kinematic coupling of the ash-cloud with the underflow induces a velocity at the lower flow boundary, while shear stress at the ash-cloud/underflow wanes and results in the shrinking of the maximum velocity and concentration heights. Therefore, the ash-cloud can reach high velocities and multiply its destruction potential. The experimental work presented in this thesis provides the first datasets of the internal physical properties of PDCs, which can be used to test the validity of current numerical models and highlight their limitations. This thesis also presents the study of a small hydrothermal blast that occurred at Mt. Tongariro, New Zealand, on the 6th of August 2012. The study of the blast is subdivided into two phases: the PDC phase and the ballistic phase. The detailed study of the PDC along the main propagation axis highlighted the role of the longitudinal zoning of the current, which was reflected in the complex tripartite deposit architecture. The study of the blast-derived ballistic crater field revealed a zone of high crater density that was related to the focus of ballistic trajectories around the main explosion direction. Simple inverse ballistic modelling provided evidence for a shallow blast (c. 5° above horizontal) from Te Maari. Furthermore, a comparison of ballistic block lithologies confirmed the origin of the elongated succession of craters or fissures formed by successive blasting during the eruption.

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  • Modelling food breakdown and bolus formation during mastication : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Bioprocess Engineering at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

    Gray-Stuart, Eli Mark (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    Mastication is a complex process that transforms food into a bolus which can be swallowed safely. However, it can be simplified within an engineering context, where the mouth is the equipment carrying out a unit operation to convert ingested food (raw material) into a safe-to-swallow bolus as the process output. Two questions emerge from this observation (i), ‘What processes transform the food from its initial state into a bolus?’ and (ii), ‘How do humans assess when the food is ready to initiate swallowing?’ This research examines these questions and a mathematical model is developed which can track the bolus properties during mastication. A range of common foods with contrasting textures were examined in an observational study to investigate the rate processes of mastication. A wide range of breakdown pathways and textures were observed, from the brittle fracture of carrots to the work softening of a fibrous beef steak. However, despite differences in their structure and properties, breakdown is dominated by a small number of rate processes. Size reduction and work softening occur at occlusion and account for majority of the structural breakdown. Absorption, dissolution and melting are generally more subtle. These are facilitated by mixing, which is the circulation, gathering, folding and placement of food on the occlusal plane. Mechanical sensory testing (MST) occurs simultaneously to breakdown as the food is manipulated around the mouth during occlusion and between chews. During occlusion this provides gross information about the toughness and hardness, whereas between chews the tongue-palate interactions provide more detailed information about yield and flow. These MST’s assess the properties of volume, adhesion, bolus deformation, particle deformation and particle size. Adhesion refers to the binding forces between the food particles and the oral surfaces. Bolus deformation is important for boluses that do not contain individual particles. If they do then swallowability is constrained by their size and individual deformability. In order for safe swallowing, thresholds for each of the MST properties must be met. These were justified using a hazard and operability study of swallowing, on the premise that attempting to swallow a bolus which does not meet the threshold property could result in aspiration or choking. As mastication proceeds, the properties assessed by the MST’s are evaluated against the required threshold properties and contribute to the decision making process of whether to swallow or continue chewing. From this analysis, this work proposes a universal conceptual model of mastication that combines the rate processes, the MSTs and a decision making model. The conceptual model was then described mathematically. It is universal, that is, it is not specific to any food type, because solid foods follow similar physical breakdown paths where occlusion is of primary importance followed by the incorporation of saliva and the other rate processes. Model parameters require in-vivo experiments about the breakdown dynamics of specific foods. Subject variability was avoided by using single subject studies for three separate foods; brown rice, a sweetened gelatine gel and peanuts embedded in a food matrix. Each case study explored a limited number of rate processes and food properties. Bolus properties predicted by the model were compared to the experimental data. The output of the model, including particle size distribution and moisture content, closely matched the data during mastication and at swallow point using input parameters fitted from the single subject experiments. This work provides a platform for further research into mastication modelling. It is recommended the mathematical model be expanded to mechanistically describe the mixing and work softening of non-particulate food boluses. Additional experimental work would achieve a better understanding of the heat transfer in the mouth which would improve the models ability to handle heat sensitive foods. The model developed here has the potential to aid future food design where a particular breakdown pathway is desired and will reduce the number of time intensive in-vivo experiments needed.

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  • Photo-identification and its application to gregarious delphinids: Common dolphins (Delphinus sp.) in the Hauraki Gulf, New Zealand : A thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Marine Ecology at Massey University, Albany, New Zealand

    Hupman, Krista E (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    Massey University

    Common dolphins (Delphinus sp.) remain one of the most poorly understood delphinids within New Zealand waters. Baseline data on their abundance, site fidelity, movement patterns, and social structure remain unknown. This thesis applies photo-identification (photo-id) methods to fill in this data gap and provide the first comprehensive assessment of abundance, site fidelity, movement patterns, and social structure of Delphinus within New Zealand waters. Traditional cetacean photo-id relies on identification of dorsal fin nicks and notches. Photo-id is, therefore, rarely applied to common dolphins due to the lack of distinctive markings for individual identification and their gregarious nature. This study, however, applied this technique to identify unique individuals by examining dorsal fin nicks and notches in combination with dorsal fin pigmentation patterns in an effort to provide an additional stable feature for individual identification. Of all individuals examined, 95.3% exhibited dorsal fin pigmentation, with 92.7% manually identified using pigmentation as the only identifying feature. Novel computer vision and machine learning techniques were applied to examine pigmentation patterns. The correct individual was identified via pigmentation patterns alone 52.5%, 70.8%, and 78.7% of the time within the top-1, top-5, and top-10 matches, respectively. Furthermore, 79.9% of individuals were able to be classified as adult or immature based on pigmentation patterns alone. Overall, results suggested that pigmentation patterns are stable over time (for up to 11 years), although it is not known what proportion of the population exhibits such stability. Pigmentation patterns proved to be a reliable means of identification and can be used as a primary feature for identifying individual common dolphins in the Hauraki Gulf (HG). Future studies should trial this technique for this species in other worldwide populations. To estimate population parameters, mark-recapture (MRC) analysis can be conducted. This thesis examined the challenge of using this technique to estimate population parameters for common dolphins in the HG. The main challenges identified included the: high portion of unmarked animals; low levels of distinctiveness, and; the gregarious transient nature of Delphinus. Despite such challenges, reliable photo-id protocols were developed to increase the accuracy of individual identification and produce estimates of population parameters. These protocols included: combining the use of nicks and notches with pigmentation patterns as a primary feature for identification; classifying individuals as highly distinctive (D1), distinctive (D2), or non-distinctive (D3); the development of a distinctiveness threshold to catalogue individuals, and; for population analysis, stratifying data by the level of individual distinctiveness (by examining differences between D1 individuals only compared to D1&D2 individuals combined). The use of these protocols enabled the identification of 2,083 unique individual common dolphins in the HG between 2010 and 2013. Sighting records from these 2,083 individuals were used in a POPAN framework to estimate population parameters. The total population abundance was then calculated using a mark ratio (for D1 only and D1&D2 individuals) to account for the proportion of unmarked dolphins in the population. The best model selected for D1 individuals included constant survival and probability of entry and time dependant capture probability (ø(.) p(t) β(.)), whereas for D1 and D2 individuals combined, probability of entry varied by time (ø(.) p(t) β(t)). Apparent survival was constant for both D1 (0.767) and D1 and D2 (0.796) individuals. The low apparent survival estimates are likely caused by emigration of transient dolphins. Capture probability varied over time for both D1 (range=0.021-0.283) and D1 and D2 (range=0.006-0.199) individuals. Probability of entry remained constant for D1 individuals (0.062) but varied over time for D1 and D2 individuals (range=0.000-0.413). The total population was estimated at 7,795 dolphins (CI=7,230-8,404) when only D1 individuals were included, but increased to 10,578 individuals (CI=9,720-11,512), with the addition of D2 individuals. The photo-id protocols used here allowed maximised use of the photo-id data and provided a useful approach to estimate population parameters of poorly marked gregarious delphinids. The techniques applied here could be used for MRC studies of other Delphinus populations, or for other similar low marked gregarious species. Considering the large number of individuals found to use the HG, the level of site fidelity for common dolphins within this region was assessed. Likewise, an assessment was conducted to determine if individuals move between regions, primarily to the Bay of Plenty (BOP), and additionally to the Bay of Islands (BOI) and the Marlborough Sounds (MS). Common dolphins displayed long-term site fidelity to the HG, with 2,399 marked individuals identified within this region between 2002 and 2013. These individuals were classified as occasional visitors (95.1%), moderate users (4.8%), and frequent users (0.1%). Individuals were also found to move between neighbouring regions including the Bay of Plenty (2.2%) and Bay of Islands (0.2%). In addition, a number of individuals were defined as travellers moving between multiple regions. Travellers exhibited opposite seasonal peaks in re-sightings between the HG and the BOP, which may represent an influx of individuals from these neighbouring regions. A total of six travellers were observed to move between the HG and the BOP in stable pairs. Knowledge of common dolphin site fidelity to the HG and movement patterns to other regions is vital for identifying management units and, therefore, providing effective conservation of this species in New Zealand waters. The definition of management units requires knowledge of a species social structure. Findings presented here provided the first analysis of Delphinus social structure in the Hauraki Gulf. Considering common dolphin associations may be difficult to study due to their gregarious nature, an assessment of which sighting thresholds were best for conducting social structure analysis was conducted. Sighting thresholds were assessed to determine which is best for: maintaining reliability without the loss of data; association indices, and; representation of the true social structure. Precision of the data increased when the sighting threshold decreased. Levels of association were reported to decrease when restricting the number of times an individual was observed. Notwithstanding, maximum association indices were similar regardless of the sighting threshold used. Social structure analysis was considered to be a ‘somewhat representative’ pattern of the true social organisation of common dolphins in the HG. For these reasons, a threshold of four or more sightings was considered the best representation of social structure for this population Common dolphins in the HG displayed fluid associations at the population level (Coefficient of Association; COA=0.02), although some individuals were found to associate with particular companions (maximum COA=0.46). The population was also classified as a well-differentiated society (S=1.230). Individuals did not form short-term companionships but instead preferred long-term associations. Structured relationships existed, some of which lasted for periods of up to 70 days. The examination of the sociality of gregarious species is therefore possible using photo-id techniques and provides information on association patterns for common dolphins within New Zealand waters. Such information is important to collect over the long-term to be able to determine relationships between individuals which can be used to develop effective management this population. To efficiently manage common dolphins in the HG and New Zealand waters, it is important to be able to identify the natural and anthropogenic pressures faced by populations. To examine this, photo-id was also applied to assess the prevalence of lesions and deformities. The majority (78.0%) of individuals photo-identified exhibited lesions, whereas only 0.5% had deformities. Of all body segments examined, the anterior peduncle exhibited the highest percentage of lesions or deformities (91.1%). A significant difference in the prevalence of lesions between the leading and trailing edges of dorsal fins was also evident. A number of possible causes of lesions and deformities were highlighted including intra- or inter-specific interactions, congenital malformations, environmental conditions, infectious origins, fisheries and vessel interactions, and/or human-induced environmental stressors. Considering the number of pressures faced by this population it is important to monitor lesion and deformity prevalence over time to highlight natural or human induced impacts within the environment. As common dolphins remain part of an open super-population, which inhabits the north-eastern coastline of New Zealand’s North Island, they are therefore, subject to cumulative pressures. Considering a baseline abundance estimate is available, further monitoring and meaningful re-evaluations of this population is required. Proactive as opposed to reactive conservation is, therefore, recommended to ensure effective management of this species in New Zealand waters.

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