14,669 results for University of Canterbury Library

  • A least invasive method to estimate the residual strain capacity of steel reinforcement in earthquake-damaged buildings.

    Loporcaro, Giuseppe (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Capacity design and hierarchy of strength philosophies at the base of modern seismic codes allow inelastic response in case of severe earthquakes and thus, in most traditional systems, damage develops at well-defined locations of reinforced concrete (RC) structures, known as plastic hinges. The 2010 and 2011 Christchurch earthquakes have demonstrated that this philosophy worked as expected. Plastic hinges formed in beams, in coupling beams and at the base of columns and walls. Structures were damaged permanently, but did not collapse. The 2010 and 2011 Christchurch earthquakes also highlighted a critical issue: the reparability of damaged buildings. No methodologies or techniques were available to estimate the level of subsequent earthquakes that RC buildings could still sustain before collapse. No repair techniques capable of restoring the initial condition of buildings were known. Finally, the cost-effectiveness of an eventual repair intervention, when compared with a new building, was unknown. These aspects, added to nuances of New Zealand building owners’ insurance coverage, encouraged the demolition of many buildings. Moreover, there was a perceived strong demand from government and industry to develop techniques for assessing damage to steel reinforcement bars embedded in cracked structural concrete elements. The most common questions were: “Have the steel bars been damaged in correspondence to the concrete cracks?”, “How much plastic deformation have the steel bars undergone?”, and “What is the residual strain capacity of the damaged bars?” Minimally invasive techniques capable of quantifying the level and extent of plastic deformation and residual strain capacity are not yet available. Although some studies had been recently conducted, a validated method is yet to be widely accepted. In this thesis, a least-invasive method for the damage-assessment of steel reinforcement is developed. Based on the information obtained from hardness testing and a single tensile test, it is possible to estimate the mechanical properties of earthquake-damaged rebars. The reduction in the low-cycle fatigue life due to strain ageing is also quantified. The proposed damage assessment methodology is based on empirical relationships between hardness and strain and residual strain capacity. If damage is suspected from in situ measurements, visual inspection or computer analysis, a bar may be removed and more accurate hardness measurements can be obtained using the lab-based Vickers hardness methodology. The Vickers hardness profile of damaged bars is then compared with calibration curves (Vickers hardness versus strain and residual strain capacity) previously developed for similar steel reinforcement bars extracted from undamaged locations. Experimental tests demonstrated that the time- and temperature-dependent strain-ageing phenomenon causes changes in the mechanical properties of plastically deformed steels. In particular, yield strength and hardness increases, whereas ductility decreases. The changes in mechanical properties are quantified and their implications on the hardness method are highlighted. Low-cycle fatigue (LCF) failures of steel reinforcing bars have been observed in laboratory testing and post-earthquake damage inspections. Often, failure might not occur during a first seismic event. However, damage is accumulated and the remaining fatigue life is reduced. Failure might therefore occur in a subsequent seismic event. Although numerous studies exist on the LCF behaviour of steel rebars, no studies had been conducted on the strain-ageing effects on the remaining fatigue life. In this thesis, the reduction in fatigue life due to this phenomenon is determined through a number of experimental tests.

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  • Investigation of modelling methods for buildings with non-structural elements

    Lee CL; Kerr CE; Proudfoot DG (2017)

    Conference Contributions - Published
    University of Canterbury Library

    The modelling of non-structural elements is becoming increasingly important. It has been found that during seismic events modern buildings can incur significant downtime due to the damage of contents, even when the building is performing well structurally. This report details an investigation into the validity of the cascade modelling method for the design of buildings with non-structural elements. The cascade method is a way of modelling a building without using specific details of non-structural elements, and then later performing a separate analysis in order to design the contents. It was found that the cascade method may be an appropriate method for modelling non-structural elements. However, as the non-structural mass increases, the error becomes more significant. Currently, most cascade modelling considers only translational motions. Rotational motion, if present and relevant, should be considered as part of the modelling input.

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  • Why risk helping? : an investigation into the relationship between safety and two motivators of new employees helping behaviour.

    Glover, Katherine (2016)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Objective. The primary objective of this study was to investigate, within the context of new employees’ and workplace safety, two motivators of employee’ helping related behaviours; job security and need for respect. Design. Correlational cross-sectional design. Setting/Participants. New Zealand; high risk work industries. 80 eligible participants were recruited from employees in various organisations and associations, with 22 participants excluded due to 10%, or greater, missing data. Main Outcome Measures. Organizational Citizenship Behaviours and Safety Risky Helping Behaviours. Results. The study’s objective, and subsequent hypotheses, were empirically tested using correlation analyses in SPSS. These analyses showed that employees tenure was not directly related to either the need for respect motivator (α = 0.05), or the job security motivator (α = 0.05). The analyses also indicate that both motivators were positively related to employees’ Organizational Citizenship Behaviours (p < 0.05 level, one-tailed), but not related – be that positively or negatively – to their Safety Risky Helping Behaviours (p < 0.05 level, one-tailed). Conclusions. The results of this study suggest that the two motivators examined are directly related to Organizational Citizenship Behaviours, but not to tenure or to Safety Risky Helping Behaviours. As this study is amongst the first to examine these motivators within this context, these findings suggest that further investigation into these motivators, and indeed to the overall model of employee-employee helping, is needed before further consideration is given to implications or practical applications.

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  • The electronic word-of-mouth effects of review valence, review volume, and product type on consumer purchase behaviour.

    Wallace, Chloe Suzanne (2017)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    This thesis aims to examine the mediating role of product type (i.e., product-luxury perceptions) on consumer response to online reviews and the subsequent effect on purchase behaviour. Specifically, this thesis explicates the influence of review valence and review volume in shaping the consumers’ product evaluation, which in turn affects their purchase intentions for the focal product. An experimental design is adopted for this research. To examine the possible effects of product type and online reviews on consumer response, an online experiment based on a review website platform is conducted, using a 2×2×3 between-subjects factorial design. In the experiment, participants were exposed to one of twelve conditions involving the manipulation of the three independent variables (review valence, review volume and product type). A total of 432 participants were included in the final analyses, which were recruited via online convenience sampling on Amazon’s Mechanical Turk. Factorial ANCOVA analysis was conducted to test the hypothesised relationships. The results indicated three interaction effects between review valence, review volume and product type on consumer decision-making. A two-way interaction effect of review valence and product type, confirmed that product type mediates the influence of review valence on product attitude, product evaluation and purchase intent. Results also indicated that luxury products are less susceptible to the influence of review valence, which equates to lower purchase intentions than the non-luxury counterpart when exposed to positive reviews. A recurrent main effect of review valence was present, with results indicating a negativity bias on the perceived informative value and persuasiveness of online reviews, which was also salient in information adoption. Review volume had one main effect and tended to emerge as significant through mediating variables. Moreover, product type elicited a main effect for six dependent measures. Product involvement, susceptibility to interpersonal influence (i.e., social learning and social belonging) and materialism were found to have exogenous effects (covariates). The managerial and theoretical implications are discussed for this research, along with suggested directions for future research.

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  • Social networks, identity and contexts : a narrative ethnography of a group of College English (CE) teachers’ social learning process amid the research discourse.

    Zeng, Wei (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    This research is a narrative ethnography about a group of College English (CE) teachers working at a university in China. As one of them, I, together with my CE colleagues, lived and told our stories of dealing with the increasing research demand from the workplace. I sought to explore how our workplace mediated the social process of our learning during educational change. The research is conceptualized within the theoretical framework of community of practice and draws on social network perspective. It also adopts a poststructuralist perspective to present the dynamic socio-cultural process of how these teachers experienced and made meaning of various discourses about their teaching, researching and personal lives. The discourses from the workplace, the social context and teachers themselves make these CE teachers’ social networks and identities a site of ambivalence and struggles. Entrenched in a lower-status department, CE teachers struggled with various meanings of knowledge: the officially-valued research, the teaching-research, linguistics/western literature research, non-linguistics/western literature research, quantitative research and qualitative research. They also grappled with competing duties from both the workplace and the family. The research delves into CE teachers’ lived experiences, offering implications for enhancing CE teachers’ learning as well as international understanding of academics who might experience similar educational change. Finally, the study contributes to advancement of social learning theories, in particular, the theory of community of practice and social network theories.

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  • #BringBackOurGirls : solidarity or self-interest? online feminist movements & third world women.

    Murphy, Emma Grace (2017)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Due to global interconnectedness and the rise of social media, humanitarian communication is said to have shifted from its groundings in the Politics of Pity towards Ironic Solidarity. Ironic Solidarity maintains participants act not to alleviate distant others’ suffering, but to perform their own identities; thus, perpetuating the very problems they aim to eliminate. This thesis seeks to examine this claim in the context of Online Feminist Movements, using the #BringBackOurGirls movement as a case study. This hashtag rose to global prominence following the mass abduction of female students in Chibok, Nigeria, by the militant group, Boko Haram. This movement is examined indepth to determine what led to its global prominence. Also examined is the impact of social media and mainstream media on the movement; the influence of its feminist ideals; and whether participants’ actions were solidary or in self-interest. To address these aims, a selection of relevant Twitter tweets and mainstream media newspaper articles from four distinct periods were analysed through Critical Discourse Analysis. The results of this study found overarching discourses of the #BringBackOurGirls movement that suggest it primarily relied upon power dynamic discourses, which served to enforce the hegemonic relationship between the west and global south. Additionally, such power dynamic discourses within a third world feminist movement demonstrated that western first world feminism had usurped the movement, thereby further disenfranchising third world women. The power dynamic discourses showed the presence of the Politics of Pity within this humanitarian movement, showcasing that this remains a firm feature of humanitarian communication. However, Ironic Solidarity was additionally present, indicating that the two humanitarian communication approaches can exist concurrently. The presence of Ironic Solidarity also indicated that participants acted primarily in selfinterest in their engagement with the #BringBackOurGirls movement.

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  • Inclusive education aspirations: exploration of policy and practice in Bangladesh secondary schools

    Rahaman, Muhammed Mahbubur (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    In accordance with global policies and pressures Bangladesh has incorporated inclusion as a change agenda in its education system and has consequently legislated a number of policies supporting inclusive education for children with disabilities in mainstream education. Secondary schools in Bangladesh are gradually initiating inclusive teaching and learning approaches to respond to the significant shifts in policy. This research examines the relationships between global pressures, national policies for the inclusion of children with disabilities and the aspirations, practices and needs in secondary schools in Bangladesh. In particular, it examines political rhetoric concerning valuing diversity within Bangladesh and juxtaposes this rhetoric with case studies of the practice of five selected schools. There is very little comprehensive research in this field in Bangladesh, so this project encompasses an exploration and review of policy and of policy context as well as an exploration of the grounded realities of education practices. It addresses the main research question: How do Bangladesh’s current policies for students with disabilities in secondary schools align with practice, resources and perceived needs? The study utilised a qualitative case study methodology. The overarching case is that of inclusive education in Bangladesh. Within this, there are a number of embedded cases examining the practices of particular schools and the perspectives of policymakers. The study was conducted in two stages. The first stage was designed to get information on policy from documents and interviews with professionals including academics, teacher educators, policy administrators, policymakers, and education policy experts. The purpose of this phase was to investigate the policy options for educating children with disabilities in mainstream/inclusive setting and to understand the influences of global policies on Bangladesh policies and legislation. The second phase involved case studies of five selected secondary schools to investigate how such policies are translated into practices. The study identified a gap between policies and practices that arose from the dominant influence of international drivers as well as the lack of strategic implementation processes. The findings from the study lead to the conclusion that schools were claiming to be implementing inclusive education despite their teachers having not received training in inclusive educational practices or having sufficient resources. As a consequence staff were often unaware of how to meet the needs of students with disabilities and of how to integrate them into class. It further identified the range of challenges that still exist. The findings are significant for the Bangladesh context as the country strives to achieve the goal of inclusive education, and as a contribution to the wider debates of inclusion and inclusive education practices. Their implications are discussed in relation to further policy formation and to the development of strategies and resources for improving teaching learning practices in inclusive classrooms. The thesis concludes that the road to inclusion for Bangladesh secondary schools may well have begun but it requires further reformation of not only schools but also national strategies of policy development.

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  • Water policy and governance in Guyana, “the land of many waters”

    Baptiste, Onika M. (2017)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Effective water policies and good governance strategies are essential for sustainable development. Successful management of fresh water resources also requires the integration of the different sectors that use this resource. Therefore, water resource management policies should have an integrated approach that involves social, economic and environmental factors. Guyana, an American Indian word for “land of many waters”, officially the Co-operative Republic of Guyana, is located on the north-east coast of South America. It can be said that water is part of the country’s identity, because of its inclusion in the definition of the country’s name and because of the abundance of this natural resource within the country’s borders. Additionally, the agriculture sector, which contributed 21.8% of Guyana’s annual GDP in 2016 uses 94.4% of the annually extracted freshwater. Effective policies and governance strategies are therefore important for the sustainable development of Guyana. This research investigated the current water policy and governance strategies of Region 4, Guyana. The study assessed how the water threats of the Region are outpacing existing water management policies. It also analysed policy gaps in the existing legislation through the lens of the adaptive integrated water resource management (AIWRM) process. This was done by using data from semi-structured interviews and by analysing existing laws. This study thus advances understanding of using the AIWRM process for policy development and implementation in Region 4, Guyana. The results show that there are multiple challenges to water policy in Guyana and that the existing laws are not effectively addressing these policies, because of several factors, such as the age of the legislation, the technical nature of the management strategy proposed by these laws, and the general top-down governance structure established by these Acts. These factors limit the ability of existing laws to effectively manage current and future water challenges in Region 4, Guyana. The results also show that some of the laws have aspects of AIWRM; however, policies that will give effects to these laws have not been developed, therefore the benefits derived by including the principles of AIWRM into water policy have not been realised. It is concluded that the findings offer insights into how the existing laws can be combined with the AIWRM process to address the current and future water challenges of Region 4, Guyana. Keywords: Water policy, governance, adaptive management, integrated water resources management, Guyana.

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  • Lived experiences of Bhutanese former refugee youth : coping, resilience and mindfulness infused counselling

    Rodrigues, Neville (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    This thesis explores the lived experiences of a group of young Bhutanese former refugees between the ages of 18 to 24 years who were resettled in Christchurch between 2008 and 2010 – prior to the first major earthquake. The main goal of the thesis was to gain an understanding of their ways of coping and a second goal was to explore whether their participation in up to five mindfulness infused counselling sessions had influenced their ways of coping. A qualitative research methodology was used to guide the thesis. Participants were interviewed about the major events in their life and how they coped with them. They were then invited to participate in five sessions of mindfulness infused counselling. Approximately five weeks after their final session had ended they were invited to one final interview to explore the influence of the sessions on their ways of coping. Interviews were recorded and transcribed and research notes were taken of the mindfulness infused counselling sessions. Max van Manen’s method of phenomenology was adopted to interpret the narratives of the youth. Three main themes emerged from the data analysis and these are described as essences of lived coping experiences. The first captures their strong sense of community back in the refugee camp. The second presents the sense of resilience that exists among the Bhutanese former refugees. The third essence indicated the inner strengths of the participants which they said helped them deal with the challenging circumstances that life cast in their direction. This meant that their first experience of an earthquake was not considered the biggest event in their lives. After attending the mindfulness infused counselling sessions’ participants reported positive benefits from giving non-judgemental attention to their thoughts and feelings and they found themselves dealing with their issues proactively. For some participants their ‘accepting’ attitude facilitated better control over their emotions while others reported being able to form deeper connections with nature and other people as a result of being mindful. Other participants reported being able to make peace with the events in their past and even found that they were able to forgive those who tormented their community. However, in the absence of any major event in any of the participants’ lives in the time period following their final counselling session, the research was not able to definitely conclude that using mindful-based counselling facilitates better coping in the face extremely stressful events. There is currently very little research that focuses on the experiences of former refugee youth within New Zealand and how they utilize their capacities to deal with adversities. When this thesis commenced, the Bhutanese were the newest refugee community to be accepted for resettlement in New Zealand. This research partly addresses the limited voice of this community.

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  • Why does New Zealand export sawn timber to some markets and logs to others?

    Luketina, Ivan (2017)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    New Zealand’s annual log harvest has increased rapidly from 2009 to 2017. This increase in harvest has been mostly exported as logs, rather than being processed in New Zealand into sawn timber and other products. Previous industry strategy studies have identified the need for the sawn timber processing sector to be internationally competitive, as it is both an important processing industry, and a supplier of residue to downstream manufacturers. Studies that compare New Zealand’s export log and sawn timber markets have shown that most markets import either sawn timber or logs, but rarely an even mix of both. However, most export logs are processed into sawn timber or plywood at the destination. This research uses econometric analysis to identify the drivers of these differences in market behaviour. A seven-country export demand panel model was used to analyse the effects that different variables had on demand for sawn timber and logs. Real GDP and real prices were used to explain demand for log and sawn timber imports from New Zealand. Variables for tariffs and tariff wedges (the difference between the tariff for a processed good and the tariff for its raw material), non-tariff barriers (NTB), competition effects, and local resources were used to test their effects on demand. Tariff wedges and the local harvest of softwood timber were found to have a significant negative effect on demand for sawn timber, while only a softwood harvest was found to negatively affect demand for logs. The presence of tariff wedges was found to be negatively correlated with the sawn timber demand, but did not fully explain the difference in demand between logs and sawn timber. Research suggests that NTBs have a large impact, but they are difficult to measure and therefore analyse in this context. The existence of a softwood timber resource was found to be negatively correlated with demand for softwood imports. There was no significant negative effect found for competition effects.

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  • Modeling supply chain risks and ways to ameliorate negative effects on the supply chain performance and reputation of firm in the dairy industry

    Abraham, Vivek Oomen (2017)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Supply chain risk has become an issue of significance for many dairy firms across the globe. The complexity of the supply chain has increased due to various levels of raw material sourcing, uncertain market conditions, competition and ever changing customer demands. The aim of this literature-based study is to investigate how the literature suggests supply chain risks are approached in a dairy industry and the methods that have been found to mitigate or ameliorate negative impacts of events that compromise supply chain performance and reputation of firm. A conceptual framework for supply chain risk management is discussed for better handling of risks in a dairy supply chain. The main focus of the study will be on how supply chain risk management is approached in the literature, what are the various kinds of supply chain risks in a dairy industry, perception of supply chain risks in a dairy firms and its effects on the proper functioning of the firm, the role of trust, communication and relationship between supply chain partners as the main parameters for better handling of risks in a dairy supply chain. Importance is also given to understand what the existing literature suggests on ways to mitigate and ameliorate negative effects of risks for better supply chain performance and reputation of firm. These are some of the questions on which the research is built. Comprehensive literature review along with case study analysis has been used as the main approach for data collection. A three stage research approach was used to answer the research questions. Stage one was focusing on the existing literature on supply chain risk management. Four cases (stage two) on supply chain failures in dairy firms are used to analyse the supply chain risks and how it could be managed well by the organization for a better performance and reputation of the firm. Finally, a matrix (stage three) is developed from the input received from the cases which is linked to the literature review on supply chain risk management and also explains how these risks can be ameliorated for a greater supply chain performance. Risk and uncertainties can obstruct the smooth flow of supply chain activities which has an effect on its performance. Proper identification and assessment of risk is of major importance in a proper supply chain risk management. Supply chain risk management is built on the foundation of trust, commitment, frequent information sharing and a perfect relationship. Key words – Supply chain management, supply chain risks, risk management, performance management, dairy firm, Supply chain and communication, relationship and trust.

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  • Modelling, Speckle Simulation and Quality Evaluation of Synthetic Ultrasound Images

    Singh P; Mukundan R; de Ryke R (2017)

    Conference Contributions - Published
    University of Canterbury Library

    Speckle noise reduction is an important area of research in the field of ultrasound image processing. Several algorithms for speckle noise characterization and analysis have been recently proposed in the area. Synthetic ultrasound images can play a key role in noise evaluation methods as they can be used to generate a variety of speckle noise models under different interpolation and sampling schemes, and can also provide valuable ground truth data for estimating the accuracy of the chosen methods. However, not much work has been done in the area of modelling synthetic ultrasound images, and in simulating speckle noise generation to get images that are as close as possible to real ultrasound images. This paper discusses these aspects, presents novel algorithms for speckle simulation and modelling based on three sampling schemes, and also evaluates the quality of the outputs using image quality metrics. Detailed experimental analysis including both quantitative and subjective assessments are also presented.

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  • Transport infrastructure performance and management in the South Island of New Zealand, during the first 100 days following the 2016 Mw 7.8 “Kaikōura” Earthquake

    Davies AJ; Sadashiva V; Aghababaei M; Barnhill D; Costello SB; Fanslow B; Headifen D; Hughes MW; Kotze R; Mackie J; Ranjitkar P; Thompson J; Troitino DR; Wilson TM; Woods S; Wotherspoon LM (2017)

    Journal article
    University of Canterbury Library

    At 00:02 on 14th November 2016, a Mw 7.8 earthquake occurred in and offshore of the northeast of the South Island of New Zealand. Fault rupture, ground shaking, liquefaction, and co-seismic landslides caused severe damage to distributed infrastructure, and particularly transportation networks; large segments of the country’s main highway, State Highway 1 (SH1), and the Main North Line (MNL) railway line, were damaged between Picton and Christchurch. The damage caused direct local impacts, including isolation of communities, and wider regional impacts, including disruption of supply chains. Adaptive measures have ensured immediate continued regional transport of goods and people. Air and sea transport increased quickly, both for emergency response and to ensure routine transport of goods. Road diversions have also allowed critical connections to remain operable. This effective response to regional transport challenges allowed Civil Defence Emergency Management to quickly prioritise access to isolated settlements, all of which had road access 23 days after the earthquake. However, 100 days after the earthquake, critical segments of SH1 and the MNL remain closed and their ongoing repairs are a serious national strategic, as well as local, concern. This paper presents the impacts on South Island transport infrastructure, and subsequent management through the emergency response and early recovery phases, during the first 100 days following the initial earthquake, and highlights lessons for transportation system resilience.

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  • A Robust Algorithm for Automated HER2 Scoring in Breast Cancer Histology Slides Using Characteristic Curves

    Mukundan R (2017)

    Conference Contributions - Published
    University of Canterbury Library

    This paper presents a novel feature descriptor and classification algorithms for automated scoring of HER2 in Whole Slide Images (WSI). Since a large amount of processing is involved in analyzing WSI images, the primary design goal has been to keep the computational complexity to the minimum possible level. We propose an efficient method based on characteristic curves which encode all relevant information in a smooth polynomial curve with the percentage of stained membranes plotted against variations in intensity/saturation of the colour thresholds used for segmentation. Our algorithm performed exceedingly well at a recent online contest held by the University of Warwick [1], obtaining the second best points score of 390 out of 420 and the overall seventh position in the combined leaderboard [2]. The paper describes three classification algorithms with features extracted from characteristic curves and provides experimental results and comparative analysis

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  • Global justice awareness? The journey towards transformational learning through international volunteering

    Atkinson, Arthur Laird (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    The opportunity to engage in international volunteering (IV) is a markedly privileged one that this thesis explores through the consideration of a complex range of factors and influences from the global to the personal in an effort to understand how volunteers make meaning of their experiences. IV encompasses a large range of organizations, many of which market volunteering abroad as a mutually beneficial experience for both the volunteer and the host community receiving the volunteers. Links to neocolonialism and neoliberalism, however, have illuminated ethical concerns about how transformation is experienced if host communities are used for the benefit of volunteers. This thesis undertook a mixed methods approach and analysis of three groups of volunteers: those who are currently volunteering, those who have recently returned, and those who have volunteered in years past. Through in-depth interviews and an open-ended survey, this thesis identified four phases of transformation that suggest IV can foster an awareness about global in/justice and that critical self-reflection plays a significant role. Using Mezirow’s theory of transformational learning compliments Bourdieu’s concept of habitus and embodied experience, which implies that volunteers need to be aware of their own habitus, recognizing they may contribute to both systems of injustice and justice. Using this theoretical strategy generated an account of IV as a doubled-edged sword, which signals that there is tension between personal transformation and social justice. Studying IV within a sociological context can contribute to knowledge about how IV programs are situated within a framework of service, influenced by tourism and development, and how they could be better operated within this framework to better foster volunteers’ awareness of inequality and global justice.

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  • The effects of a simulated nature experience on the physiological and behavioural responses of young children with post-traumatic stress symptoms

    Vesty, Clare (2017)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Post-traumatic stress symptoms are a common reaction to experiencing a traumatic event such as a natural disaster. Young children may be at an increased risk for such mental health problems as these catastrophic events may coincide with developmentally sensitive periods of development. Treatments currently recommended for children with post-traumatic stress symptoms insufficiently acknowledge the role of neurobiological stress related systems responsible for these symptoms. As such, alternative approaches to the treatment of posttraumatic symptoms have been explored, with nature-based interventions offering a potential alternative based on two different theories that uphold the stress reducing benefits of natural environments. To date, there are a limited number of experimental studies that have explored the use of nature-based interventions with children, and no known research that has used a simulated nature experience with child participants. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of a simulated nature experience on the physiological and behavioural responses of children with post-traumatic stress symptoms that experienced the Christchurch earthquakes. A single-case research design with repeated measures of heart rate and teacherreported behaviour was gathered across a 20-day period. Heart rate data was collected before and after participants watched a 10-minute nature video, while data from a teacher rating scale provided information about the participants’ behaviours in the 30-minute period after they watched the nature video. Comparisons made to data collected during two different baseline phases indicated that the nature video intervention had no recognisable effects on the participants’ physiological and behavioural stress responses. Limitations to the current study are discussed as possible reasons for the incompatibility between the current study’s results and the findings from previous research. Suggestions are made for any future replications of the study.

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  • A low-cost MPPT multiple-input power converter for home applications in isolated areas

    Phan, Phu Huu (2017)

    Masters thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    The focus of this research is to design and build a low-cost maximum power point tracking (MPPT) multiple-input-single-output power converter system for low power gridisolated applications. The design of this power converter concentrated on searching for a suitable topology that integrates multiple renewable power sources, each with their own MPPT requirements and with the lowest cost of components. With good power conversion efficiency, the converter provides power to a dc load output and is also able to appropriately charge an energy storage battery. In addition to the main functional blocks, all protections required are equipped with the converter, including under voltage lock-out (UVLO), over voltage protection (OVP), cycle-by-cycle current limit, and battery over charge and over discharge prevention. The development and implementation of the converter was divided by different steps. The initial phase searched for, analyzed, and proposed the most suitable topology in terms of power delivery, cost, and feasibility. The non-isolated full-bridge was chosen for the power conversion topology for each channel with its own analogue controller. An interfacing circuit was designed to work with those full-bridge controllers for integrating MPPT control signals, constant output voltage control signals, and constant charging current control signals, from a microcontroller, a single output voltage feedback loop, and a single output current feedback loop, respectively. After a specification of the design had been selected, the detailed design and calculation of circuits was carried out. Simulations were also conducted to confirm the operation of the converter, including the start-up sequences, output load response, battery charging modes, and the transient between operation modes. The converter was then transferred to PCB design with two versions, a 2-layer and 4-layer board. A comparison was made for choosing the appropriate option among the designs regarding board size, cost, and performance. The final physical converter was formed by soldering components on the manufactured 170mm x 130mm 4-layer PCB, and programming of the microprocessor. The final step was the characterisation of the converter with standard power supplies and renewable energy source emulators, in the laboratory environment. Results show that the converter functions as per the design specifications. With the input source of a solar photovoltaic panel, a micro wind/hydro turbine, or both, the converter can work with solely a dc load or with a dc-bus connected battery (where the converter provides a threestage charging profile). The smooth and fast transiting between operation modes of MPPT, constant output voltage, and constant charging current were recorded without any abnormal behavior. The MPPT functions separately with each input source with high accuracy and fast response to the input conditions. Depending on the state of the output, the converter automatically switches to either constant output voltage or constant charging current mode when the total available input power is higher than the output load demand. For each of these operation modes, the converter also achieves a fast response to the input sources voltage and output load variations. With a designed capability of 2 kW maximum total power conversion, the converter is able to work with a wide range of input voltage (from 16 V to 60 V) for both input sources while its nominal output voltage is set at around 27 V for working with a nominal 24 V lead-acid battery. The peak power conversion efficiency of 95.3 % was recorded at 400 W of total input power when the turbine source voltage was 54 V (dc value after the rectifier) and the solar photovoltaic source voltage was 24 V. The operating temperature of the converter appeared to be higher than expected at some components, with a peak of 68.3 oC recorded on the gate driver chips. However, this issue could be mitigated by adding more heat sink components or modifying the design on a new revision. With under $60 USD of total component cost (slightly above $55 for pre-manufactured components and materials, and about $3 for the PCB), the converter is shown to be a low-cost converter regarding its power capability while supporting multiple input sources which may have a wide range of nominal power outputs. This makes the converter more applicable in isolated areas of developing countries.

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  • The Foreign Exchange Carry Trade

    Carrodus, Mark (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    I examine the foreign exchange (FX) carry trade, using both single currency and portfolio construction techniques. Chapter I looks at the background, the mechanics of constructing the FX carry trade, and the returns that it generates. In addition the behaviour of these returns is examined in the context of uncovered interest rate parity and several time series analysis aspects. Chapter II introduces both a theoretical stop-loss framework and a sample of hedge fund risk management policies obtained from industry sources. These stop-loss policies are then superimposed onto the FX carry trade. Although ’naive’ returns to the FX carry trade, as documented elsewhere in the literature are strongly positive, allowing for stop-loss rules results in returns that are insignificantly different from zero. The ability to cash in on the much vaunted forward premium puzzle relies on being able to stay in the trade, which seems strongly at odds with industry risk management policies. The stop loss signals generated are modelled using available currency futures data and client segmentation categories, but fails to establish a meaningful relationship. Chapter III extends the already established link between the returns to the FX carry trade and historical volatility measures to that of the entire FX option implied volatility surface. The quotation conventions and mechanics of trading FX options are explained and despite being able to establish a strong contemporaneous relationship between FX carry trade returns and FX option implied volatility surfaces, this is not able to be extended to predicting future FX carry trade returns.

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  • Andrea Zani (1696-1757) - life and works - through a study of the documents together with a collected edition and thematic catalogue.

    Ward, Jillian Ruth (2010)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Among the numerous eighteenth-century composers of merit whose music remains virtually unknown and unavailable in modern editions, and whose names are absent from the many items of Baroque literature to date, is Andrea Zani (b. Casalmaggiore, 1696-d. Casalmaggiore, 1757). Yet his skill saw him ranked as a virtuoso, and his compositions were published in Vienna, Paris and Amsterdam, as well as his native Italy. Despite the fact that most of his output is extant and accessible either in manuscripts or early prints in the archives of Europe, the United States of America and the United Kingdom, no thorough study of these works has been made. The scant biographical information available on Zani lies in a succession of brief and lamentably incomplete accounts, traceable to one early nineteenth-century writing. A comprehensive study of Andrea Zani and his music has yet to be made. The objectives (and thus the structure) of this dissertation are to present a definitive performing edition of Zani’s entire output and to compile a biographical account that will substantially augment and correct much of the biographical information that is available. These objectives are interdependent. A biography may be illuminated by information found in music sources – dates of compositions or dates and places of publications, names of dedicatees (and even of specific occasions) are all indicators of avenues of research, and as this is undertaken, isolated facts gradually turn into an expanding and yet increasingly tightly-knit network of detail. The music itself may be illuminated by confirming its location within the lifetime of the composer and a growing understanding of the various circumstances surrounding the years in which it was written. When this is allied with a knowledge of the dissemination of his compositions, one is led toward a contemporary estimation of the composer and a measure of the sphere of his influence. One further element of this research is a thematic catalogue of Zani’s works. As a comprehensive description of his output, it provides a stand-alone reference volume for future studies of the man and/or his compositions. More widely, it will assist with the solution of problems of misattributions of compositions among Zani's contemporaries.

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  • Rural parents’ engagement in education in Bangladesh: problems and possibilities

    Hasnat, Mahammad Abul (2017)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    This thesis explores the engagement practices, understandings and experiences of parents and teachers in the rural context in Bangladesh. It investigates the underlying factors that create blocks to engagement. It examines the complex interplay of expectations, blame-giving, financial constraints and pervasive social problems within the context, and how that interplay both calls for and yet inhibits engagement. The thesis also reports one head teacher’s initiatives to overcome the blocks and to create space for engagement. The study is a qualitative case study that utilises an emergent research design. This process of data collection offered me the flexibility to respond to contextual conditions and to capture rich data through group discussions and individual conversations with the teachers, parents and the community people. It allowed me to observe participants’ activities, review related documents and maintain a reflective research journal. The importance of place is highlighted throughout as my study sought to identify and report not only actual practices but the cultural, social and economic conditions that shape those practices. Place contextualises where policy decisions are to be implemented. Place is also a significant consideration in identifying the kinds of steps that might be taken to overcome barriers. Therefore, attention is given to describing the rural context of Bangladesh and its people in some detail. The study begins with examining the reasons for importance being placed on parental engagement by policy, and reports the problems in implementing policy aspirations in the rural context through the lenses of parents and teachers. It found that teachers were frustrated by lack of parental response to invitations and by their apparent disinterest in their children’s educational progress. It also found that parental illiteracy and poverty were major factors in preventing parents from becoming engaged with educational matters. Additional factors were unsatisfactory communication processes, the complex nature of the cultural relationship between parents and teachers, and the politicised nature of schools’ public programmes. I found of understandings, by both parents and teachers of the concept and possibilities of engagement were largely very limited. The thesis explores how cultural and socio-economic conditions shape dominant discourses and arbitrate access to cultural capital as well as posing practical problems. These factors impede parental engagement in education and are powerful indicators of why such engagement is needed. Next the study reports the activities of one head teacher who is taking a different approach in the same context. It details his different and innovative strategies for reaching out to parents and creating space for them to be become involved with their children’s learning and with the school. It also identifies a number of key characteristics of his leadership that allow him to make a difference and suggests that these characteristics are ones that should be looked for and fostered in appointment processes, professional development and official support. Finally the implications for policy and practice of the findings are discussed. Two models are offered: the first of the nature and possibilities of parental engagement in rural contexts of Bangladesh; the second of the processes needed to develop parental engagement in such contexts. The study is a deliberately contextual one. However, some of the contextual factors may have resonances with other contexts and other countries. Moreover the analysis of how contextual factors impact on parental engagement may also be relevant to other contexts. Therefore while the focus in on parental engagement in rural contexts in Bangladesh, it is envisaged that the study will also have wider relevance.

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