91,714 results

  • A familiar villain: surveillance, ideology and popular cinema

    Brown, Felicity Adair (2005-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    This thesis examines the representations of surveillance in mainstream cinema. Using ideology critique it will show how filmic illustrations of monitoring depoliticize the relationship between surveillance and structural relations of power.In order to provide a foundation for this inquiry, a political economy critique of surveillance will be undertaken in four areas. Focusing on the workplace, consumer surveillance, urban policing and intelligence gathering, this thesis will contextualise surveillance as historically relevant and intimately connected with modern constructs such as the nation-state, military power and capitalist economic organisation. In recent years, the role of surveillance has been intensified in response to the challenges posed by globalization, the restructuring of capitalism in the 1980's and 90's and the declining legitimacy of nation-state governments. These developments are both aided by, and in turn promote, pervasive networks of surveillance. Driven by risk management and other forms of economic reasoning as organisational logic, developments in information communication technologies accelerate surveillance capabilities rendering them more invasive and intense. In this way, surveillance can be conceived of as complicit with prevailing relations of power on a macro, sociological level.In order to show how mainstream cinematic representations of surveillance ideologically obscure this relationship, this thesis begins with an overview of 30 popular films. It then moves to a comparison of four recent Hollywood portrayals of surveillance with the four areas of political economy critique identified above. This analysis will reveal that these films have a tendency to focus on sentimental themes such as individual heroism, antagonist versus protagonist struggles and romantic subplots, in a way which deflects attention from collective experience with surveillance webs. More pertinently, the narrative structures of these films feature dichotomies between malevolent and benevolent monitoring, aligning legitimate and benign surveillance with the state. At the same time, the accompanying imagery of surveillance devices fetishizes monitoring, deterministically glorifying technology as a powerful and omniscient force. The overall effect is to depoliticize monitoring as a natural part of the fabric of everyday life.

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  • Consumer evaluations of brand imitations: an investigation

    Su, Sasa (2006-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Brand imitation is viewed as an infringement of the imitated original brand. (Zaichkowsky, 1995). Although brand managers and researchers have looked into ways to fight against imitations, these are still prevalent in today's market. Researchers have found that one of the major reasons for the growing volume of imitations has been consumer demand. Thus, rather than studying ways to reduce imitations, it is first important for brand managers and researchers to understand why consumers would knowingly buy imitations. The major issue is to understand how consumers evaluate brand imitations. Several studies have explored factors that might have an influence on consumer evaluations of brand imitations. However these findings are limited. For example, similarity of the imitation to the original brand is an important factor in consumer evaluations. However, very little research has studied this aspect. Thus, this research is motivated to further investigate the influential factors of consumer evaluations of brand imitations. This study replicates d'Astous and Gargouri (2001), a study that examines a comprehensive set of factors that might influence consumer evaluations of brand imitations. The purpose of this study is to re-examine their hypotheses in various product categories, with a focus on luxury brands. Moreover, this study has extended the d'Astous and Gargouri (2001) study by investigating product similarity which had not been previously explored. However, hypothesis testing did not completely support the hypothesized effects. The results indicate that consumers who purchase luxury brand imitations are heavily influenced by the price and store image. The results show also that the factor of product similarity is unimportant to a customer purchasing imitator brands.

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  • Destruction of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH's) and aliphatic hydrocarbons in soil using ball milling

    Magoha, Happy Steven (2004-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    This study involves the use of ball mill as a mechanochemical reactor in the destruction of environmental contaminants. Although the technology has the potential to be used for a wide range of organic contaminants, this study focused on polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH's) and aliphatic hydrocarbons. There are different methods for the remediation of the environmental contaminants such as biological, chemical and thermal techniques, most of which are costly. The ball mill is less costly as it involves low technology and little or no other chemicals seem to be needed to give complete destruction of the substances investigated. The mill is relatively easy to construct and can be made in different designs and dimensions to fit its intended purpose i.e. they can range from a laboratory scale to a very large industrial mill for the continuous processing of tonnes of material at a time. The process can be sealed so pollution from the mill is easy to control. In this study two classes of environmental contaminants were investigated. PAH's are common by-products of combustion and are found as contaminants in many soils. The other compounds investigated were the larger aliphatic hydrocarbons. These were chosen as being representative of the evaporated residues from fuel spills or leaks. A laboratory scale centrifugal ball mill with capacity of approximately 200 g was used for the study. The PAH's investigated were naphthalene, anthracene and phenanthrene. The aliphatic hydrocarbons n-eicosane and n-octacosane were used as the model compounds for hydrocarbon residues. Different soil types (scoria, clay soil, silica sand and slag) were spiked with a known amount of these contaminants. The ball milling was done under different milling conditions i.e. with different ball ratio and with different milling duration. In some experiments there was an addition of materials such as a potential free radical trap or metals to investigate the effect on the mechanochemical reaction. The samples were analysed using an ultrasonic extraction method (EPA METHOD 3550C) with GC and GC-MS analysis of the extract for the quantification of the residual contaminant in the soil and identification of possible secondary products and reaction intermediates. It was found that high destruction efficiency was achieved using milling times of between 120 and 150 minutes and high ball to soil ratios for example 7:1 ball mass to soil mass ratio. Also it was found that different type of soil had an influence on the mechanochemical reaction. A silica matrix was found to have a better destruction rate compared to scoria and clay soil. It was also found that the PAH compounds were more rapidly destroyed by ball milling than were aliphatic hydrocarbons. The addition of BHT was found to reduce destruction rate of both PAH's and aliphatic hydrocarbons. This suggests the mechanism of destruction may involve a free radical mechanism. Aluminium metal was observed to have no significant effect in the destruction. The presence of lubricants such as waxes in the contaminated soil appeared to inhibit the mechanochemical reaction although the mechanism is still uncertain. From this study it was concluded that, the ball mill has considerable potential as an effective, low cost method for the destruction of certain environmental contaminants.

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  • Two becoming one: immigrant Indian women sustaining self and well-being through doing: a grounded theory study

    Nayar, Shoba C (2005-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Using a grounded theory methodology, this research sought to describe the occupational change process Indian women experience as they settle in a new environment, with a focus on how they sustain their sense of self and well-being. Semi-structured interviews were carried out with eight women of Indian origin who had immigrated to New Zealand within the past five years in an attempt to generate theory about the processes that these immigrants' experience. A constant comparative analysis revealed a central change process, Two Becoming One, which encompassed three interconnecting occupational processes. The first process women experience is Oh God, Where Did I Come?. In this process, where the environment is new and unfamiliar, the women feel compelled to do familiar activities that they know they can accomplish, thus increasing confidence and supporting well-being. The second process, Being In The Change, sees the women learning more about their new environment and engaging in new occupations, while continuing to hold on to doing familiar activities. A New Zealander with an Indian Soul finds the women doing more as they embrace a strengthening sense of self and well-being and strive to build their future in a new land. Central to these three processes is the core category Two Becoming One. This process is a commentary on the women's journeys of integrating the demands of two cultures, each with its own unique environment and ways of doing things, while supporting a healthy sense of self and well-being throughout the experience. The study findings demonstrate the dynamic interplay that occurs within a person-environment-occupation interface. Situating the findings within current literature reveals the limitation of previous understandings of the person-environment-occupation dynamic, in relation to people performing in an unfamiliar environment. With an increasing trend of immigration worldwide, this study brings to light the importance of understanding the bearing that environmental context has on occupation and the resulting impact for persons' sense of self and well-being. Further research in this area is required to gain deeper awareness of the ways in which people interact with their environment over time, and the resultant effect on occupation.

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  • Code-switching and identity on the blogs: an analysis of Taglish in computer mediated communication

    Smedley, Frank (2006-11-29)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    This study analyses the code-switching variety Taglish (Tagalog-English) in personal weblogs written by Filipino bloggers.The main research questions are set forth in chapter one: why do writers of weblogs code-switch in contexts where there is no specific addressee and hence no turn taking, and why is 'this' particular language chosen at 'this' juncture in the weblog narrative?Chapter two gives an overview of relevant code-switching theory and research, and focuses especially on the sociolinguistic dimensions. In particular, the markedness model of Myers-Scotton is reviewed with respect to the notion of code-switching itself as an unmarked choice. This sets the stage for introducing Taglish as a normal and unmarked phenomenon for many Filipinos.Chapter three presents the socio-political and linguistic background in the Philippines. This give a backdrop for a focus on the evolution and status of Taglish.The problems associated with the presentation of self in Computer Mediated Communication (CMC) are examined in Chapter four and then the unique characteristics of weblogs are explored with respect to their purpose and genre.Chapter five looks at the design and methodology employed and emphasises the qualitative nature of the research and the sampling method as purposive. The main corpus of 25 extracts were analysed using frameworks which bring important perspectives to bear on the use of code-switching in the construction and negotiation of identity. These frameworks are: the referee design dimension of Bell's audience design model with its emphasis on initiative style shifts to project different identities; discursive psychology which highlights the use of language to position self and others; and narrative psychology with its stress on people's use of narrative to seek coherence of self and life-experience. These frameworks are combined with Bakhtinian notions of polyphony, dialogism and heteroglossia.Chapter six gives the detailed results of the analysis of seven weblogs which typify the findings of the corpus. Code-switching on these weblogs highlights the creative end of language use. However, it is a creativity tempered by the realities of Bakhtinian heteroglossia. The heteroglossic nature of the code-switching, in seemingly monological texts, is implicated in how the bloggers negotiate and construct social identities by positioning themselves and others in the ongoing narrative flow. In that the code-switching is extremely plentiful in this non-oral environment, it poses a serious challenge to the attempts by some conversational analysts (e.g., Li, 2005) to claim that code-switching can only really be explicated in terms of the systematics of an interaction taking place. The research seeks to stay within the spirit of CA by suggesting that even in a seemingly monologic form, interaction may be reconceived as heteroglossia covertly present in all language and overtly manifest in switching. Thus switching is not merely a product of how speakers attend to the orderly production of conversation, but also a product of how they attend to the inherent heteroglossic nature of language and exploit their linguistic repertoire maximally to make their communication as effective as possible, and to construct and negotiate multiple identities.

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  • The mechanical, hormonal and metabolic responses to two resistance loading schemes

    Crewther, Blair Tehira (2004-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    The effective prescription of resistance exercise for strength and power development has been a source of debate amongst practitioners and sport scientist alike. One of the key issues in this area relates to the training load that would best facilitate strength and power adaptation. Heavy loads (>60-70% 1RM) have been traditionally used for maximal strength development by facilitating changes in neural function (strength) and muscle size (hypertrophy). However, many studies have now found lighter load (>45%1RM) training equally effective in improving both strength and hypertrophy. Similarly, many studies have found heavy load training effective in enhancing various measures of power though lighter loads (e.g. 45% 1RM) are thought to maximise the mechanical power output of muscle. Realising that adaptation depends upon some interaction between the mechanical, hormonal and metabolic stimuli, examining these responses would enhance our understanding of the underlying determinants of strength and power, and thereby improve strength and conditioning practice. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the mechanical, hormonal and metabolic responses to equal volume light and heavy loading schemes. Eleven males (mean 26.6 ± 6.7 years; mean 79.0 ± 8.1 kg) with a minimum of 12 months weight training experience each performed two exercises (Smith squat and supine squat) at a light (45% 1RM) and heavy (88% 1RM) intensity. The light scheme consisted of eight sets of six repetitions, with six sets of four repetitions performed in the heavy scheme. Rest periods of three and four minutes respectively were used. Saliva sampling was used to determine the hormonal (cortisol and testosterone) and metabolic (lactate) responses. Samples were collected at rest (pre-), immediately after the first exercise (mid-), at the conclusion of the second exercise (P0) and every 15 minutes thereafter for one hour (P15, P30, P45, P60). Mean values for all variables were analysed with a paired sample T-test. Chances that the true effects were substantial (% and qualitative) were also calculated. No significant (P>0.05) difference in total forces was found between schemes; however, the light scheme produced significantly greater total time under tension (36%), total work (37%) and total power output (115%). Total impulse (38%) was the only variable found to be greater in the heavy scheme. A decrease in testosterone (TST) was observed in the heavy scheme (-4 to -29%) with no significant changes found across the light scheme (1 to 12%). Cortisol decreased in the light (-6 to -30%) and heavy (-14 to -44%) schemes until P45. An increase in the TST/cortisol ratio was observed in both the light (17 to 49%) and heavy (2 to 44%) schemes. Both loading schemes resulted in similar increases in lactate (0.3 to 1.0nmol/l). Equating two schemes by volume resulted in differential responses, many of which favoured the lighter scheme in terms of mechanical, hormonal and metabolic outputs. These findings suggest that load or intensity employed may be not as important as initially proposed and that other factors (e.g. volume, technique) may explain the similar strength and hypertrophy adaptation reported in studies comparing light and heavy schemes.

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  • Touching a sensibility: a photographic exploration of haptic experience

    Turner, Allen Julie (Jules) (2008-02-24)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Touching a sensibility will attempt to locate the exchange when the living body physically touches the world. Exploration into the emotive response that the lived body creates as it moves through the world, both as a passive receptor and as an active initiator, will be explored where a relationship between the touched and the toucher is formed. This project will use photographic processes in an attempt to facilitate the viewer to engage in the work with their own personal sensibility. The emotional tension created, within an individual when their desire to physically touch something in the world is forbidden, impossible or illicit, will be investigated. This tension manifests itself in the form of apprehension, vulnerability, anticipation, romanticism and the sensibility of possible unpredicted connection. Photographic portrayal will be used to articulate this research and bring into fruition ideas which sit around the haptic.

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  • Monitor setups for IT helpdesk workers: a comparison study

    Whalley, Sarah Marie (2007-10-04)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    In the hectic world of an IT helpdesk with an ever increasing number of applications and tasks on the go, managing the intricacies of how to navigate these is a cause of frustration for helpdesk workers. I had noticed while working on a helpdesk that the workspace area - particularly the monitor setups that IT helpdesk workers have to use - makes doing their job difficult. The number of applications open, the number of tasks on the go at once and the added pressure of customer contact, all call for applications and data to be accessed quickly - but the set up of the users workspace generally does not allow for this. The main objective of this research is to compare the difference between the use of a single screen, a dual screen and the new Multi-Layer Display (MLD) and the complications of having multiple applications and multiple monitors operating at one time for IT Helpdesk Workers. This research looked at how the users' monitor setup influenced the performance, efficiency, satisfaction, ergonomics and learning of the participants.The research showed that there was a clear dislike of the current set up of single screens; all participants felt that the single screen setup limited what they could do at once and it rated the least favourite of all. The dual and MLD screens showed positive outcomes for increasing multi-tasking abilities and raising users' perceived performance and satisfaction levels. The added screen real estate of both the dual and MLD over the single screen meant that users consistently had more information available to them 7which enabled them to complete tasks quicker, monitor other applications for incoming jobs, easily transfer data from one application to another and multi-task more effectively. While there were some minor ergonomic concerns and learning difficulties with the unique features and utilities of the both the dual and MLD monitors, participants still preferred to use these setups over the single screen.

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  • The influence of cyclic loading on the extensibility of human hamstring muscle-tendon units in vivo

    Dombroski, Erik (2005-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    The objective of this study was to investigate the influence of cyclic loading on the extensibility of hamstring muscle-tendon units in vivo.Study Design: A test-retest randomised controlled trial with repeated measures was undertaken.Background: Stretching has been commonly promoted to increase the passive extensibility of the muscle-tendon units, yet the mechanism behind its proposed effects remains ambiguous. In vivo studies of stretching have mostly been limited to the viscoelastic characteristic of stress-relaxation. Few studies have investigated the characteristic of creep. Animal and cadaver in vitro creep experiments have consistently shown increases in the length of the soft tissues, with associated changes in their resistance and stiffness. These results however, might not be representative of human muscle-tendon units under in vivo conditions. Additionally, those in vivo human studies that have investigated creep phenomenon have contrasting results. To date, no known in vivo study has examined passive cyclic loading of human hamstrings to a constant load level.Method: Using a repeated measures design the extensibility of the hamstring muscles were assessed by a passive knee extension test (PKE) to maximal stretch tolerance using a KinCom® dynamometer. Those participants in the intervention group underwent 45 continuous passive cyclic loadings as the KinCom® dynamometer moved the knee joint into extension until torque reached 85% of maximal passive resistance torque measured in the passive knee extension test. The control group sat quietly relaxed during the intervention period. Measurements of hamstring passive extensibility using the PKE test were repeated at the end of the intervention.Results: Following the intervention, the PKE test showed for the cyclic loading group there was a significant (p < 0.05) increase in both maximal passive resistance torque (mean 23%) and knee joint angle (mean 6.3%). A significant (p < 0.05) decrease in passive resistance torque (mean 11.8%) when re-measured at the baseline position of maximal passive knee angle was observed. A significant increase (p < 0.05) was found for passive stiffness over the final 10% of the knee torque-angle curve. No significant difference (p > 0.05) was found for passive stiffness for the full (100%) of the torque-angle curve. Of the control group, no significant differences (p > 0.05) were observed for all variables of the PKE test. Analysis of cycle one compared to forty-five of the cyclic loading intervention procedure showed a significant (p < 0.05) increase in both passive knee joint angle (mean 5.2%) and passive stiffness (mean 28.6%) over the final 10% of the knee joint torque-angle. No significant difference (p > 0.05) was found for passive stiffness across the full (100%) knee joint torque-angle.Conclusion: The findings of the current study demonstrated that after cyclic loading the hamstring muscles lengthened and became stiffer over the final gained range of knee joint motion. Although the current study cannot determine the mechanism behind the changes in the variables of interest, these findings do provide some evidence that most likely a combination of altered stretch tolerance and local mechanical effects within the muscle-tendon unit, i.e. creep lengthening were responsible.

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  • Listening to New Zealand nurses: a survey of intent to leave, job satisfaction, job stress, and burnout

    Daniels, Anne (2004-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Human and financial costs generated by nurse shortages, within a context of increasing numbers of patients requiring nursing care, demonstrate the potential significance of this study which aims to identify work related factors contributing to New Zealand nurses' intent to leave the job. Two hundred and seventy five usable paper and pencil surveys (Response rate = 68.8%) from a random sample of 400 nurses employed in one New Zealand District Health Board were used to explore intent to leave the job. Three research questions directed the description of levels of job satisfaction, job stress, and burnout found in nurse participants, correlations between the three variables, and the identification of variables predicting intent to leave the job through regression analyses. Levels of job satisfaction were high, job stress was low, and burnout was average. Specifically, lack of opportunity to participate in organisational decision making, control over work conditions, control over what goes on in the work setting (key Magnet Hospital characteristics) were not evident, and with pay rates, were the main sources of job dissatisfaction. Workload was the most frequently experienced source of stress by nurse participants. Twenty-five per cent of nurse participants reported high levels of intent to leave the job. Correlations suggested that reductions in job satisfaction influenced increases in job stress and burnout. Job stress was associated with increases in emotional exhaustion. Emotional exhaustion was influenced by eight job satisfaction, job stress, and burnout subscales. Five subscales (professional opportunities, praise and recognition, interaction opportunities, extrinsic rewards, lack of support) explained 26.2% of the variance in nurse participant's intent to leave. Issues of power and control were associated with job dissatisfaction, job stress and burnout in nursing practice. However, predictors of intent to leave the job suggest a growing realisation by nurse participants that postgraduate education and nursing research may provide the tools to create positive change in the health care environment and make nursing visible, valued and appropriately rewarded.

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  • Envy amongst psychotherapists in a psychotherapeutic community: a hermeneutic inquiry

    Land, Crea M (2005-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    My research explores the lived experience of envy amongst psychotherapists and between psychotherapists in a psychotherapeutic community in New Zealand. It focuses on bringing the experience of envy out of hiddenness and into language.It then explores the understandings and the possibilities of meanings that these experiences have. Previous literature on envy has for the most part discussed the clients' envy for the psychotherapist, and very little has been written about the therapists' envy for the client. My research turns the focus to the psychotherapist as it looks at their envy for each other.As I was interested in the therapists' lived experiences of envy, I chose hermeneutic phenomenology as the methodology to explore these. I drew on the philosophical underpinnings offered by Heidegger, Gadamer and van Manen.What arose from my in-depth conversations with psychotherapists is that while envy is an experienced phenomenon that is for the most part not spoken, the powerful feelings that it evokes have great impact on both those who envy and those who are envied. Envy showed up as arising in a relational context, with perception, time and anxiety as contextual determinants. These, along with the findings of the lived experience of envy as a binding between self and other, as threatening to self and other and as a means of connecting with self and other, are some of the essential points discussed in my thesis.This study provides a starting point for a further exploration of the experience of envy amongst psychotherapists as well as envy's impact on who we are in ourselves and how we are with each other, both personally and professionally.

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  • The New Zealand hotel industry: the role of image as a medium influencing company's competitiveness and customer loyalty towards brand

    Binkowska, Barbara (2005)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    This thesis evolves around image and its significance while developing customers' loyalty and increasing company's competitiveness in a highly competitive market. The topic is studied in-depth from the organisational perspective and delves into the differing motivations of hotel operators towards shaping favourable image as well as examining how the hotel's image affects customer loyalty and helps the company to increase its competitiveness. Finally, it analyses and compares which public relations tools are the most effective in the process of image creation and developing customer loyalty. From this perspective image becomes a central issue impacting company's future growth, performance and finally success. The research was conducted on the Auckland international hotel chains. Auckland hosts numerous conferences and events that drives demand for accommodation and in a way, creates a conducive environment to hotel operators for future expansion. Thus, hotels compete strongly with one another constantly looking for a competitive advantage by growing their customer base. My thesis outlines the hotels' management efforts and analyses their strategies in the context of changing customers' demands and market trends.With respect to methodological issues, my thesis is based on a qualitative approach and follows an interpretivist paradigm. The research background has been delineated as have been my respondents' profile to provide additional information about the organisation they represent. The research findings described at the end of this thesis document how important image is for a modern hotel and what initiatives should be followed to ensure success. Image and loyalty are closely interrelated as positive image affects customers' loyalty. In order to achieve a balance between sustaining a competitive advantage and increasing loyal customer base a number of managerial implications have been discovered. Detailed analysis of these findings may help the companies to establish a more favourable position in the global market and create mutually beneficial relationships which further help the organisation to grow.Having aimed at exploring the importance of image as a medium that affects company's competitiveness and customers' loyalty towards brand, this study has provided some useful indications for hotel companies as to what should be undertaken to gain loyal customers and improve company's performance on the market.

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  • The merging of fact and fiction binaries within suicide

    Chapman, Paul Steven (2007-12-03)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    This explorative research examines a contemporary representation for suicide. Utilizing a dualistic framework of biology and technology, I codify diverse theoretical discourses into why people commit suicide. My practical research then merges opposing binaries of 'fact' (the need to understand) within 'fiction' (the need to tell narratives). In context of this study a person who has taken their own life is the 'author' and the researcher is the 'reader' of this event ‐ I investigate how the reader imposes their own narrative upon the author.

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  • A pilot study to develop and validate a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) questionnaire: a health status instrument for TCM assessment in patients with Osteoarthritis (OA) of the hip or knee

    Wang, Ping (2004-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Research suggests acupuncture is potentially an effective treatment for osteoarthritis (OA) of the hip or knee. Essential for the evaluation of Chinese acupuncture treatment is the availability of a reliable and valid measurement. However, currently there is no appropriate measurement instrument validated within traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) concepts and frameworks. Objective is to develop and validate a TCM questionnaire as a health status instrument for TCM assessment in patients with OA of the hip and knee. Methods The TCM questionnaire was developed from TCM theory and clinical experience. The questionnaire was examined by experts, for content and faces validity and pre-tested on a volunteer sample of three subjects. The developed questionnaire was validated on a convenience sample of ten subjects from six different clinical settings in Auckland region. The practitioner or receptionist from the selected clinical sites handed out the questionnaire package to their patients who fulfilled the study criteria. Each patient (subject) completed the questionnaire on their arrival and the re-testing questionnaire at a two-week interval. The reliability of the questionnaire was estimated by examining the internal consistency reliability (Cronbach's alpha statistic) and test-retest reliability (Intra-class correlation coefficients). The content validity of the questionnaire was examined by literature review, interviews with patients, and experts' judgement. The construct validity was estimated by the methods of known groups, correlations between scales, and correlations with the SF-36 health survey. The success of the grouping or scaling of the questionnaire was estimated by examining the item (i.e. question) internal consistency and item (i.e. question) discriminant validity. Results The TCM questionnaire scales corresponded to the "eight principal syndromes", "ten questions", and "eight patterns of OA" within TCM concepts and frameworks. Internal consistency reliability (Cronbach's alpha) was above .70 for all scales on both occasions of the first test and the second test. Test-retest reliability (intra-class correlation coefficient) for each scale was also above .70 for all scales, except the exterior (EXT) scale, which was .44. Moderate associations were found between the age of subjects and the scores of the interior (INT) scale and summary (SUM) scale. There was a significant difference between the groups of use and non-use of on-going medication in the EXT scale scores on the first test, p = .012. However, this significant difference was not found on the second test. As expected, strong or moderate associations were found between the TCM questionnaire and SF-36 comparable scales. Conclusions The TCM questionnaire was developed within TCM concepts and frameworks. The questionnaire contains 23 items with two main scales (the EXT scale and the INT scale) and one additional scale (the SUM scale). It takes approximately five minutes to complete and is entirely self-administered. Results from this pilot study indicate that this TCM questionnaire might have adequate reliability and validity. Therefore, the questionnaire has potential usage as an outcome measurement instrument for the assessment of TCM in the patients with OA of the hip or knee. For this application to be possible, the questionnaire needs further development and validation with a larger sample of patients who have a variety of OA conditions.

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  • GIS model for assessment of land use and urban development effects on stormwater runoff: Puhinui Catchment case study

    Krpo, Ana (2004-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    As local authorities are becoming more interested in the assessment of pollutant loads, this study offers a Geographic Information System (GIS) model for assessing nonpoint source of pollution for two scenarios: the current and ultimate stage of urbanization. The Puhinui Catchment, Manukau City, has been used as a case study in developing and testing this model. This catchment has all the attributes of a "typical" urban area and gives a good representation of the effects of land use on the receiving waters of Puhinui Stream and its estuary. Annual mass contaminant loadings were calculated by firstly assessing the physical characteristics of the Puhinui catchment (case study catchment) and secondly describing the nature of storm water quality and calculating the annual mass contaminant loadings.GIS is used to multiply the annual runoff volume by a mean pollutant concentration to acquire an average annual pollutant load. The annual runoff volume is calculated from the drainage area, runoff coefficient and annual rainfall. To calculate the total mean pollutant load, the pollutant loads for all land use types within the catchment are summed and the process is applied for each pollutant. This GIS model determines the connection of typical pollutant concentrations with land uses in the catchment and offers a characterisation of nonpoint source pollution in that catchment. This model can be used for, identifying catchment areas that contribute considerably to the pollution of waterways, determining the appropriate treatment of the storm water runoff for particular sub catchment, storm water quality improvement prioritization and cost-benefit analysis, selecting locations for water-quality monitoring stations, improvement in maintenance practices, assessment of proposed development environmental effects.

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  • The influence of consumption values on motorcycle brand choice

    Gaskill, Adam (2004-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    The aim of this thesis is to identify the brand choice moderators that influence consumers' choice of one brand over another. This research examines the influence of five consumption values on brand choice behaviour within the New Zealand market for new road motorcycles using stepwise discriminant analysis. The greater variety of brands, forcing consumers to make more brand choices combined with the large financial value of some brands was the major motivator for this research. In reviewing the literature a gap emerged relating to brand choice behaviour for durable goods. This research addresses this gap through using the durable goods category of road motorcycles. Findings from this research concluded that consumption values do influence brand choice behaviour within the New Zealand market for new road motorcycles.

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  • Anticipatory lower limb muscle activity during a turning task

    Ngan-Hing, Lisa (2006-01-01)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Two experiments were undertaken. The objective of Experiment One was to identify the lower limb muscles that were most frequently active during the early period of a step turning task for further testing in Experiment Two. In Experiment Two participants undertook multiple trials of a step-turning task, 30 and 60° to the left and right of midline, at a self-selected pace in response to a visual cue. There were five objectives to Experiment Two. Firstly, to identify the predominant order in the onset of foot movement so that anticipatory muscle activity could be defined for this task. Secondly, to identify whether there is a consistent temporal order in movement onset between the head and the feet. Thirdly, to identify whether and how consistently anticipatory lower limb muscle activity is present bilaterally. Fourthly, to assess whether there is a consistent sequence in the onset of anticipatory muscle activity among muscles active in at least 80% of trials. The final objective was to identity whether there was a consistent temporal relationship in the onset of the anticipatory muscle activity present in at least 80% of trials, with the onset of head and foot movement. Study Design: A repeated measures design was used. Background: Anticipatory lower limb muscle activity in gait initiation and forward stepping studies has been reported to be consistently present, and associated with initial and important balance responses. Falls during turning are associated with a high incidence of hip fractures in the elderly population. The presence of anticipatory lower limb muscle activity turning has not been previously reported. Participants: There were five participants in Experiment One, and ten in Experiment Two. All were between 18 and 40 years of age and did not have neurological or musculoskeletal disorders, or severe visual loss. Results: In Experiment One, four muscles were consistently active bilaterally, during the early period of step-turning and were: tibialis anterior, gastrocnemius, biceps femoris and gluteus medius. In Experiment Two the ipsilateral foot moved before the contralateral foot in 68% of trials towards the left, and 79% of trials towards the right. The onset of head movement consistently occurred before the onset of foot movement during turns towards both directions. The percentage of trials in which the four muscles were active in an anticipatory manner was low bilaterally, ranging from 12 to 38% of trials. Objectives that involved the further analysis of muscles active in at least 80% of trials were unable to be completed. Conclusions: During a step-turning task young healthy adults predominantly move their ipsilateral foot before their contralateral foot. The consistent onset of head movement prior to that of the feet, indirectly suggests that the visual system might influence the temporal onset of the feet. The low levels of anticipatory muscle activity during step-turning suggest that the lower limbs are not involved with the initial balance responses for this task thus making it inherently different to gait initiation and forward stepping.

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  • Barriers to strategy implementation: a case study of Air New Zealand

    Tan, Yii T (2007-11-04)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    The ability to implement strategies successfully is important to any organisation. Despite the importance of the implementation process within strategic management, this is an area of study often overshadowed by a focus on the strategy formulation process. This thesis concentrates on the strategy implementation process, investigating barriers to strategy implementation. A research framework called the Organisational Minefield was developed to represent the importance of the implementation process to organisations. In contrary to most studies available in strategic management, this research included participants from all levels of the organisation.To identify barriers to strategy implementation, a case study of Air New Zealand was conducted. This involved focussed interviews with 28 participants from the Network and Revenue Management Department of Air New Zealand. Other sources of data such as research articles and secondary company data sources were also used.The findings revealed that: participants from different levels of the organisation have unique perceptions of the implementation process; implementation variables could become roadblocks that undermine the implementation process; these barriers can be overcome if managers are perceptive to the organisation's current situation; and the Organisational Minefield framework presented verified the significance of the role of barriers in the implementation process. The findings add two additional barriers to implementation, namely leadership and power. It was also discovered that the participants acknowledged that these two barriers will impede or enhance the success of Air New Zealand. This was backed by the level of commitment and loyalty shown by the participants, which brought Air New Zealand one step closer to unravelling the mysteries of the implementation process.

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  • Indian preadolescent girls: lifestyle patterns and accumulated risk factors

    Chhichhia, Purvi (2007-09-13)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    The Indian population is at high risk for obesity and its related diseases. Paradoxically, there is also a high prevalence of low birth weight in this population. Throughout life, factors associated with these abnormalities reflect genetic, environmental and lifestyle patterns.World-wide, the Indian population is largely non-meat-eating which could compromise the quantity and quality of the diet in macronutrients (proteins) and micronutrients (vitamin B12). Vitamin B12 has been suggested to increase the risk for the metabolic syndrome (dyslipidemia, insulin resistance, hypertension and central adiposity). Factors measured in this pilot study designed to examine the differences between meat-eating and non-meat-eating Indian preadolescent girls were body composition, dietary food and nutrient analysis, physical activity patterns and biomarkers of diet and metabolic syndrome.Six non-meat-eating (9.8±0.9 y) and six meat-eating (10.0±0.6 y) Indian preadolescent girls participated in the two weeks study. Mothers and their daughters in each group had followed the same dietary pattern from birth. Anthropometry, hand-to-foot bioelectrical impedance and resting energy expenditure were measured. Biomarkers associated with one carbon metabolism; serum B12, methylmalonic acid (MMA) and folate were measured. Inflammatory markers; high sensitivity C-reactive protein and ferritin were measured. Serum lipids, fasting glucose and haematological parameters were measured. Time spent in sedentary activities and dietary information was extracted from seven day physical activity and food diaries respectively.There was an overall trend towards higher values for the non-meat-eaters as compared to the meat-eaters in body fat percent (29.7±6.6 vs. 29.0±6.2%, p = 0.85), and waist to hip ratio (0.89±0.12 vs. 0.84±0.07, p = 0.37) but the meat-eaters weighed more (31.2±5.5 vs. 33.3±9.6kg, p = 0.65). Compared to British reference ranges, girls in both groups had a higher BF% of 29±6% which was 34 percentile points above the British median (McCarthy et al., 2006) adjusted for age.Both groups spent 21 hours each day in non-moving/sedentary activities. Dietary consumption of vitamin B12 was higher in meat-eaters compared to non-meat-eaters (2.5±0.8 vs 1.8±0.6μg.day-1, p = 0.11). Serum vitamin B12 was substantially higher in the meat-eaters (543±212 vs. 232±95 pmol/L, p = 0.01) with lower serum concentrations of MMA (0.2 ± 0.1 vs 0.3 ± 0.2 μmol/L, p=0.3). Serum folate was adequate in all girls ranging from 16.5-45.0 pmol/L, which was within the normal reference values. Two non-meat-eating girls were vitamin B12 deficient (<170pmol/L). These differences were associated with high fibre and less protein intake in the nonmeat-eaters (30±8 vs. 20±7 g day-1; 64±12 vs. 66±11 g.day-1).The initial findings in this pilot study provide early evidence that risk factors for metabolic disease associated with body composition, diet and activity are accumulating in preadolescent Indian girls. Imbalance in one carbon metabolism is clearly a factor to be considered. In those with a low consumption of meat and/or animal products, B12 monitoring, dietary recommendations and if necessary supplementation should be considered and where possible intervention before pregnancy (as for folate) be a priority. New Zealand Indian people would be a priority group.It is time for serious action in this area of health so that the risk accumulated through an imbalance in nutrition and physical activity is reduced and the health of those as yet unborn is improved.

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  • A comparative study of mobile internet deployment models in New Zealand

    Huang, Raymond (2008-01-17)

    Masters thesis
    Auckland University of Technology

    Internet services play an increasingly important role in modern society. Mobile Internet, a fast-growing technology that combines the Internet with mobile devices, has recently become popular. It is predicted that the convergence between mobile networks and the Internet would become the next generation of network architecture, and mobile IPv6 is likely to emerge as the most efficient and cost-effective instrument to achieve "anywhere and anytime" fast Internet and resolve the problems of worldwide mobility management. This research project reviews mobile Internet competition and the market mix in New Zealand, both major players and minor players being involved. The researcher also investigates the requirements of the mobile Internet deployment model from two perspectives: the market and the consumers. Finally the connection between end user services (for example, mobile Internet) and convergence (for example, network convergence and technology convergence) are examined in the research study conducted.The researcher applies a multi-case study strategy to conduct the research project and interview is adopted as the major research technique in order to collect research data. Several organizations which deploy mobile Internet services in New Zealand are chosen as participants, with the aim of offering both personal insights and business views to the research questions and objectives.

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