10,277 results for ResearchCommons@Waikato

  • The Islamic law of war: justifications and regulations [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2012-01)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'The Islamic law of war: justifications and regulations', by Ahmed Al-Dawoody.

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  • Women, war and hypocrites: studying the Qur'an [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2012-01)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'Women, war and hypocrites: studying the Qur'an', by Robert A. Campbell.

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  • The Muslims of medieval Italy [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2012-01)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'The Muslims of medieval Italy', by Alex Metcalfe.

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  • Universal dimensions of Islam: studies in comparative religion [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2012-01)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'Universal dimensions of Islam: studies in comparative religion', edited by Patrick Laude.

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  • Islam and contemporary civilization: evolving ideas, transforming relations [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2012-03)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'Islam and contemporary civilization: evolving ideas, transforming relations', by Halim Rane.

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  • Time in Early Modern Islam: Calendar, Ceremony, and Chronology in the Safavid, Mughal and Ottoman Empires [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2013-07)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'Time in Early Modern Islam: Calendar, Ceremony, and Chronology in the Safavid', Mughal and Ottoman Empires, by Stephen P. Blake.

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  • Islam on the Move: The Tablighi Jama'at in Southeast Asia [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2013-10)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'Islam on the Move: The Tablighi Jama’at in Southeast Asia', by Farish A. Noor.

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  • The Role of the Arab-Islamic World in the Rise of the West: Implications for Contemporary Trans-Cultural Relations [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2013-07)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'The Role of the Arab-Islamic World in the Rise of the West: Implications for Contemporary Trans-Cultural Relations', edited by Nayef R. F. Al-Rodhan.

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  • Religious conversions in the Mediterranean world [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2014-06)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'Religious conversions in the Mediterranean world', edited by Nadia Marzouki and Oliver Roy.

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  • The Emergence of Islam in Late Antiquity: Allah and His People [Book Review]

    Drury, Abdullah (2014-06)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    This article reviews the book 'The Emergence of Islam in Late Antiquity: Allah and His People', by Aziz Al-Azmch.

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  • Efficient quantile regression for heteroscedastic models

    Jung, Yoonsuh; Lee, Yoonkyung; MacEachern, Steve N, (2015)

    Journal article
    University of Waikato

    Quantile regression (QR) provides estimates of a range of conditional quantiles. This stands in contrast to traditional regression techniques, which focus on a single conditional mean function. Lee et al. [Regularization of case-specific parameters for robustness and efficiency. Statist Sci. 2012;27(3):350–372] proposed efficient QR by rounding the sharp corner of the loss. The main modification generally involves an asymmetric ℓ₂ adjustment of the loss function around zero. We extend the idea of ℓ₂ adjusted QR to linear heterogeneous models. The ℓ₂ adjustment is constructed to diminish as sample size grows. Conditions to retain consistency properties are also provided.

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  • Part of the problem and part of the solution? Non-state armed groups and humanitarian norms in Burma/Myanmar

    Jagger, Stanley Jeremy (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    Civil wars involving non-state armed groups in Burma have been driven by a complex mix of historical socio-political grievances and economic factors. The central government and its armed forces have conducted counterinsurgency campaigns against myriad rebel groups in ethnic areas virtually since independence in 1948. Civilian populations caught in these conflicts have suffered immensely as a consequence. The government and army have never completely controlled all the territory and people of the internationally recognised state as it exists on the map. Instead, in some areas it has been armed groups and welfare actors associated with them that have been responsible for limited administration and service provision to conflict-affected populations. Despite tolerance or support for this non-state governance in some areas, armed groups still present threats to the security of the constituencies they also claim to represent. This thesis assesses the factors that have facilitated or obstructed armed groups’ actions and the extent of their compliance (or not) in response to the norms against landmine use and the recruitment of children. While studies in other regions on armed groups and humanitarian norms have tended to consider policies of violence deliberately directed against civilians, the present study considers these less deliberate threats that armed groups in Burma present to the security of their own constituencies. It explores a set of theoretical propositions drawn from literature that has addressed armed groups from the perspectives of humanitarian engagement, sociology and political economy analysis of armed conflict. These contrasting approaches offer a more inclusive framework for analysis, considering the social, economic and coercive military and political structures influencing armed groups, affected populations and humanitarian actors engaging with them in relation to these issues. This thesis contends that perceived legitimacy and the role of armed group associated welfare and civil society actors have been significant influences on attempts to ameliorate the impact of these issues. The perspectives and influences of legitimacy diverge, however, between international support for the prohibition of landmine use and underage recruitment, and local perceptions, from armed group constituencies and the government, of the groups as credible armed actors. Localised economic agendas combined with geographical dispersion and weak organisational cohesion have also been factors leading to less compliance with these protection norms. The findings indicate that there is also considerable divergence in the extent of compliance between the two norms. Whereas landmine use remains perceived as militarily necessary to most armed groups in Burma and related to their maintenance of local legitimacy, children involved with armed groups are seen as less vital militarily, and external engagement with armed groups to address this issue has met with more acceptance over time. In the light of bilateral ceasefires and ongoing negotiations since 2012, the willingness and capacity of the armed groups and their welfare wings to address these concerns for conflict-affected populations will be important for their future support and for lasting political settlements.

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  • Carbon dioxide and methane emissions from the Te Arawa lakes of Rotorua, New Zealand

    Santoso, Arianto Budi (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    One of the biggest issues confronting humankind today is global warming due to the rapidly increasing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, namely CO₂, CH₄ and N₂O. The Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) has prepared an emission reduction strategy. So far, inland waters, including lakes and reservoirs, have not been included in the global carbon cycle. However, the contribution of inland waters to global CO₂ and CH₄ emissions has been identified to be important. Inland waters are also known to be a major sink for GHG emissions by attenuating carbon that would otherwise be transported from the terrestrial landscape to the ocean. Lakes are also very sensitive to climate change as well as to human impacts generally, and these effects will need to be considered in understanding the future role of lakes in the global carbon cycle. This study aimed to improve understanding of CO₂ and CH₄ emissions from lakes, and to quantify these emissions under changing climate and nutrient loading regimes in a regionally discrete group of lakes of volcanic origin in North Island of New Zealand. It included a comprehensive field study of one lake, application of process-based numerical modelling to the lake, and collation and critical analysis of existing datasets for the group of lakes. The primary study site was Okaro, a monomictic eutrophic lake where a major restoration program has been in place for more than one decade. The study also extended to 10 other lakes in order to give insights into effects of different nutrient and mixing regimes on carbon sources and sinks Based on observations over a one-period (September 2013 – October 2014), Lake Okaro accumulated CO₂ and CH₄ in the hypolimnion during summer stratification. These gases were entrained into surface waters as lake started to turnover just prior to complete mixing in winter. As recorded in many other eutrophic lakes, the net CO₂ flux was mostly from the atmosphere to the lake. However, CO₂, together with CH₄, escaped from the lake as a pulsed emission in winter. Using a simple annual mass balance model it was calculated that, ~31% of CH₄ sourced from the sediment escaped to the atmosphere through diffusive flux. The remainder was likely to be oxidized in the water column. The model also showed that on an annual basis the net CO₂ emission is out of the lake. These findings suggest that eutrophic lakes may actually be net emitters of greenhouse gases and that pulsed emissions may be an important contributor to the direction of the flux. This study did not account for CH₄ ebullition, however, and therefore the magnitude of GHG emissions from this lake is likely to be lower than predicted. The effects on CO₂ and CH₄ emissions from Lake Okaro of a warming climate and changes in nutrient loads was simulated using a coupled hydrodynamic-ecological model (GLM-AED2). Future possible changes were simulated by altering model forcing data, increasing air temperature by 2.5 °C. Internal and external nutrient (nitrogen and phosphorus) loads were also either halved or increased by one half. Model simulations showed that annual CO₂ uptake by the lake was enhanced under a warmer climate, but emissions of CH₄ increased during lake overturn as a result of greater diffusive fluxes. Total GHG emissions, as CO₂ equivalent (kg CO₂-eq m⁻² y⁻¹), from the lake were predicted with model simulations to increase by 27% under a warming climate, relative to present conditions. This increase would be reduced to 19% if nutrient loading was halved. A first-order diagenesis model was used to estimate the carbon deposition in the 11 Te Arawa lakes. The most productive lakes, using chlorophyll a as a proxy, had higher rates of carbon deposition in the bottom sediments than the less productive lakes. However, burial efficiency (buried carbon: deposited carbon) was lower in productive lakes meaning that most of the deposited carbon in these lakes is remineralized back into the water column. This remineralization process can be associated with CO₂ and CH₄ emissions from the lake. The results of this study highlight that eutrophic lakes may contribute emit higher levels of GHGs to the atmosphere than has previously been estimated, primarily as a result of pulsed emissions associated with the onset of seasonal mixing, at least in monomictic lakes. Eutrophication and climate warming are likely to enhance GHG emissions from lakes. The findings from this study have important implications for global GHG fluxes and indicate that fluxes into or from lakes need to be included in inventories. Reducing nutrient loads to lakes could offset some of the predicted increases in emissions of GHGs that are likely to occur with climate warming.

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  • Temporal variability in the water quality of a deep temperate oligotrophic lake

    Kpodonu, Alfred Theodore Nutefe Kwasi (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    Lakes change over time in response to climate and catchment disturbance, even in the absence of anthropogenic stressors. This temporal change may impact the setting of reference conditions for lakes. Many sources of information including monitoring data, historical information, modelling and paleolimnology can be used to understand temporal dynamics of lakes. In this thesis, the contribution of catchment disturbance by volcanic eruptions, introduction and proliferation of invasive mammals, and climate variability, to temporal variability in lake reference conditions was studied in a deep lake (Lake Okataina) in the Central North Island in New Zealand that is close to reference state. The lake and its catchment have been subject to anthropogenic and natural biotic and abiotic disturbances during the last millennium. Polynesian settlements were thought to have been established in and around the lake catchment in the early 14th century following the Kaharoa eruption of AD 1314 ± 12. Mt Tarawera erupted 10 June 1886 and damaged large tracts of vegetation in the Okataina catchment. Following European settlements around the catchment in the early 20th century, mammals which were hitherto not present, were liberated into the forest and rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) were released into the lake. Large populations of the dama wallaby (Macropus eugenii), wild boar (Sus scrofa), red deer (Cervus elaphus) and the Australian brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) exist in the catchment. These mammals have become the “new normal” in many New Zealand catchments. To understand the role of volcanic eruptions and invasive mammals in shifting baseline conditions of lakes, two 49 cm cores were retrieved from a central deep location at Lake Okataina. The core was sliced at 1 cm intervals and slices dated using 210Pb, with the tephra from the Kaharoa and Tarawera eruptions used to validate the dates and benchmark events. Dating indicated the length of the core encompassed the period between the Kaharoa eruption of AD 1314 ± 12 and 2009. Various inorganic and organic geochemical proxies in the sediment core slices were analysed to determine: changes in catchment erosion, phosphorus speciation, phytoplankton community assemblage, primary productivity, sources of organic matter loading, redox potential, and internal phosphorus loading to the lake. A suite of statistical techniques, including structural equation modelling (SEM), general linear modelling (GLM), nonmetric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) and correlation analysis was used to interpret vertical changes in the composition of the core slices and relationships amongst analytes. SEM was used to compare the relative importance of climate and catchment disturbance in changing the primary productivity of Lake Okataina after the Tarawera eruption (1886) and European settlement (1900). Changes in historical primary productivity inferred from total organic carbon in sediment core slices were modelled as a function of geochemical proxies for erosion (Al and Ti) and records of climate variability (Southern Oscillation Index and Temperature Anomaly). The results of this study showed that erosion is the main driver of changes in primary productivity although climate contributes substantially to the variations, and also contributes to changes in erosion itself. The relationship between phosphorus speciation and algal community dynamics in the lake over the past ~ 700 years was established by applying NMDS and GLM to sequentially extracted phosphorus species and algal pigments from the sediment core. Pigments representing diatoms, cyanobacteria, chlorophytes and chryptophytes were measured vertically through the core at 1 cm intervals, as well as phosphorus associated with apatite and CaCO₃, Fe and Mn (oxy) hydroxides, Al (oxy) hydroxides and labile phosphorus. Highly significant correlations were established amongst the algal groups and the phosphorus fractions. The NMDS showed diatoms were strongly correlated with phosphorus fractions associated with permanent burial (apatite and CaCO3 and Al (oxy) hydroxides), while cyanobacteria and chlorophytes were correlated with potentially bioavailable phosphorus (Fe and Mn (oxy) hydroxides and labile phosphorus). Chlorophytes, cyanobacteria and chryptophytes co-dominated when diatom populations were reduced, and vice versa. Using GLM, phosphorus fractions could be used to hindcast historical variations in the composition of algal communities (as inferred from pigments), with the exception of alloxanthin (representative of chryptophytes). Long-term changes in the water quality of Lake Okataina were inferred from sediments deposited from 1836 to 2009, during which time the forested catchment was disturbed by both a pyroclastic volcanic eruption (Tarawera 1886) and invasive mammals (commencing c. 1900). Multiple sediment geochemical proxies were analysed stratigraphically to ascertain trends in organic matter loading (TOC, TN, δ ¹³C and δ ¹⁵N and TOC/TN ratio), primary productivity (Ni, Cu), redox potential (U, V and Mo) and phosphorus retention capacity (Al/Fe and Al/P ratios) of the lake. The chronosequence of the proxies showed that the main source of organic matter loading to the lake is algae although terrestrial loading was increased immediately after the eruption of 1886. Erosion of inorganic materials was relatively high after the eruption but decreased after about twenty years, possibly linked to vegetation regrowth. After 1920 there was a sustained increase in the terrestrial flux of inorganic material. The redox potential of the lake also changed substantially from about 1930, suggesting a reduced degree of bottom water oxygenation. Primary productivity increased considerably after about 1960, while the phosphorus retention capacity of the lake has substantially decreased over the last 50 years. Using eleven years (2003 to 2013) of contemporary monthly monitoring data, I tested for patterns of temporal coherence in three deep oligotrophic lakes of the Rotorua region, which have similar catchment geology, trophic state and morphometry. Variables measured in the upper 1 m and bottom 2 m of the lakes, or variables calculated from depth profiles, as well as water level, were included in the coherence analysis. The directly measured variables included temperature, dissolved oxygen, nutrients and chlorophyll a, and the calculated variables were depths of the thermocline, deep chlorophyll maximum and euphotic zone, as well as Schmidt stability. Temporal coherence was calculated for each of variable using Pearson correlation coefficient values after LOESS decomposition. The average temporal coherence for the lake pairs was high (r=0.65) indicating that the variability in most lake water quality properties is not lake-specific, but instead responds strongly to regional climate. Surface variables were more coherent than those at depth. Physical variables were more coherent than chemical variables, and the variables derived from the depth profiles were less coherent than directly measured variables. Our results indicate the strong influence of regional climate on physical variables in particular, which propagates into progressively reducing influence on chemical and biological variables. The effects of climate are progressively filtered from physical to chemical and biological variables. Coherence analysis is a useful tool to tease apart the relative influence of climate change on these variables and provides a contemporary context for lake behaviour in response to climate forcing, rather than using specific lakes which are benchmarked to a pre-anthropogenic era. The results of this thesis show that while the effect of eruptions is catastrophic, it is also relatively transient compared with the recent impacts of invasive mammals and climate warming, which are more continuous perturbations to the lake and landscape dynamics. Climate variability and invasive mammals tended to act synergistically to increase catchment loads of sediment and nutrients to the lake, effectively creating a shifting reference condition for a lake that would otherwise be considered relatively stable. With current climate change scenarios for New Zealand showing increasing temperatures, and without significant control of exotic mammals, recent trends in phytoplankton assemblages observed in this study, towards domination by cyanobacteria and chlorophytes, may be expected to be reinforced, and bottom-water oxygen levels may decline further. In setting targets for lake restoration goals, management of populations of invasive mammals should be included where there are substantial areas of native forest, because of the potential for these species to reduce vegetative cover, increase loads of sediment and nutrients to lakes, and negatively impact water quality.

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  • The control of wind and waves on sediment transport asymmetry and the long-term morphological development of estuaries

    Hunt, Stephen (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    Most theories on the equilibrium shape of estuarine basins highlight the dominance of tidal asymmetry in controlling the hydrodynamic and morphodynamic feedbacks that ultimately lead to a stable morphological state. This thesis uses field measurements, numerical modelling and sediment deposition records to investigate how waves interact with tidal processes and how these interactions influence sediment transport and the non-linear feedbacks between hydrodynamics and estuarine basin morphology. Numerical modelling experiments were conducted over a series of idealised estuaries representing different stages of infilling, which show that wind and waves are far more efficient than tides at shaping intertidal areas, with the effect being subtly dependent on the depth distribution in the intertidal. Moreover, the wind and wave climate can substantially alter the hydrodynamic regime over the entire estuary and in intertidal areas can exert a much greater control on asymmetry than tidal currents alone, which dominate in the deeper channels. Under the effect of tides alone, currents over intertidal flats are to found to remain flood-dominant as the estuary infills, thus promoting continued accretion until tidal currents become too weak to entrain sediment. Therefore, estuaries with only tidal currents are likely to evolve into in-filled areas of salt-marsh or mangrove with drainage channels, whereas fetch-aligned estuaries (in which wind-waves are common) have a greater probability of attaining deeper hydrodynamically-maintained stable intertidal areas. Although waves have little direct influence on hydrodynamics within the subtidal channel, the tidal asymmetry is controlled by the height and volume of the intertidal areas and therefore is indirectly influenced by wave activity. The higher-energy, infrequent storm-wave events can considerably modify estuarine morphology over short timescales whereas lower-energy but perpetual effects like the tides operate continuously and so the relative contribution of such events in shaping the long-term morphological evolution can be considered on a range of timescales. Within this thesis a combination of hydrodynamic measurements, sediment deposition records and numerical modelling are used to determine the conditions under which observed waves are morphologically significant. Morphological significance is defined as when waves influence tidal and suspended sediment flux asymmetry and subsequently infilling over geomorphological timescales. By comparing a fetch-aligned and a non fetch-aligned mesotidal basin, it is shown that for a sufficiently large fetch, even small and frequently occurring wind events are able to create waves that are morphologically significant. Conversely, in basins with a reduced fetch, wave events are less frequent and therefore of far less morphological significance. The role of tidal range in controlling sediment transport is investigated through consideration of its influence on bed shear stress, τmax. The decrease in bed shear stress associated with greater water depths is compared to increases owing to the larger fetch that accompanies the increased tidal range and the generally stronger currents associated with larger tidal range. Here, it is shown that during neap tides the reduction in water depths around high water and tidal currents are not offset by the reduction in fetch. Thus, it is shown that the basin-averaged τmax is similar during both spring and neap tides in addition to the shorter duration of slack water during neap tides. Consequently, as τmax is lower in the subtidal channel during neaps, the sediment gradient (and hence sediment transport potential) between tidal flats and channels is greater. Thus it is concluded that sediment deposition potential may actually be increased during a neap tide. This result is in sharp contrast to previous observations from microtidal wave-dominated environments, in which differences between spring and neap result in increased erosion during spring tides. Overall, this thesis shows that short period locally generated waves can be considered a morphologically significant hydrodynamic process within estuaries. With increased fetch, waves become more morphologically significant relative to tides as even low, frequent wind speeds are able to generate waves that are capable of controlling patterns of sediment transport.

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  • Exploring teacher transition in New Zealand primary schools: The impact of changing class levels on teacher professional learning

    Carlyon, Tracey (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    This thesis provides an in-depth understanding of teacher transition and the impact of this on teacher professional learning. The focus is on the transition that occurs when a teacher changes from teaching in one class level to another in New Zealand primary schools. Of particular interest is learning more about how teachers’ perceptions of transition are developed, the outcomes that are generated for them and other stakeholders, how teachers negotiate transition, and the role of school leadership in teacher transition. This research uses case study methodology, and although it is primarily qualitative in nature, a mixed methods approach was applied to gather both qualitative and quantitative data. Data were collected from 536 teachers via an online survey and from four teachers by means of a semi-structured interview. By converging and comparing broad numeric trends that emerged from the quantitative data with the detail from the qualitative data, I was able to gain a more in-depth understanding of teacher transition and the impact of this on teacher professional learning. Findings from this study suggest that there are significant benefits for teachers and other stakeholders when teachers transition. These highlight that transition has a very significant impact on teacher learning, and stimulates the interplay between a teacher’s professional learning and professional identity which can result in changes in practice and pedagogy. The influence from these changes is shown to strengthen a teacher’s professional identity, bring about more effective teaching and extended professionality. Those theories which suggest that teacher development occurs in sequential stages and that all teachers progress through these stages in a linear fashion as they become more experienced, are challenged, and the suggestion that teachers require opportunities, such as transition at different times during their careers for professional development and learning, is supported. There are four major implications for teacher education that have emerged from the findings of this study. First, they suggest that cognisance be taken of the opportunity that transition provides for teacher learning and that transition is conceptualised as a form of professional learning and development. Secondly, they indicate that when tensions are acknowledged and clearly understood, teachers are better placed to see transition as a positive opportunity for professional learning and development. The third set of implications concern teachers being given sufficient opportunities to prepare, both mentally and physically, for transition. Finally, the study shows that the success of teacher transition is fundamentally dependent on the action of school leadership to ensure that school cultures and systems are conducive for teachers to change class levels successfully. The new information from this study gives support to initial teacher educators, student teachers, teachers, school leaders, schools, Boards of Trustees and policy makers to ensure all teachers can successfully transition. In an effort to build knowledge about teacher transition, this study advocates that all teachers are given the chance to take full advantage of the unique opportunity for rich professional learning and development that transition between class levels offers.

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  • Pululima Faifai Pea: Establishment of Sāmoan Immersion ECE Education Centres & Bilingual Units in Primary and Intermediate Schools

    Vaitimu Tuāfuti, Patisepa (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    Sāmoan Immersion Preschools (Ā’oga ‘Amata) and Bilingual Education units covering from year one to year eight of school have become well established in some areas in the Auckland region since the 1980s, due to the commitment, support and contributions of parents, the Sāmoan community, church leaders, families and some schools. Given that parents, families and communities appeared to have played such a seminal role in their establishment, this research was set out to investigate Sāmoan parents’ lived experiences in relation to the establishment of ā’oga ‘amata and Sāmoan bilingual education units. Fa’afaletui phenomenology, a term I developed in the process of conducting the research, was employed as a culturally appropriate coupling methodology. Phenomenology is about lived experiences and fa’afaletui is a process and procedure of revealing participants’ lived experiences. Insights into parents’ lived experiences were obtained by using various methods namely: questionnaire, focus group discussions, individual interviews, couple interviews and testimonies. The lived experiences were collated from the recounts of past events. The recounts were analysed for themes, which arose from the comments and interpretations of the past events, and the expressions of emotions attached to the events. Observations and analyses of past events highlight many challenges that the participants experienced. Challenges ranged from financial difficulties and lack of resources, to lack of understanding about bilingual/immersion education. What the results make clear is the resilience of the participants in defending what they believe is right as far as fa’asāmoa is concerned, and the powerful role of emotions in personal and educational lives. Resilience and emotions are coefficients in the results and they have theoretical importance in understanding the research findings.  

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  • The Ethics of Reading: Levinas and Gadamer on encountering the other in literature

    Dougan, Melanie Jane (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    This dissertation explores the question ‘can we encounter the Other through the mediation of literature?’ The question reflects an increasing interest in ethics by literary theorists and particularly in the application of Emmanuel Levinas’s work to the field of literary studies. I identify a major concern with this trend that has been largely overlooked: Levinas states that the Other cannot be encountered through the mediation of literature. With questions of justice towards texts and the necessity to respect alterity at the forefront, I argue that Levinas’s concerns cannot be overlooked. To explore a possible solution to the problem I first consider Levinas’s concerns with literature and argue that his adamant stance on the Other and literature stems not so much from the arguments he puts forward but a human conviction that the ethical is limited to the immediate face-to-face encounter. I suggest that this desire which cannot be fully accounted for by his philosophical account finds its origin in the Holocaust but, more than this, can be seen as the ethical saying interrupting and disturbing his writing. The answer to the question of the thesis hinges on the interpretation of both who the Other is and what exactly the encounter with the Other means for Levinas. Unlike most literary theorists, I do not look for ways in which Levinas’s ethical work is portrayed in literary texts; I am interested in the text as Other and the reader’s responsibility towards it rather than situations or characters that fit the face-to-face model. I draw upon Hans-Georg Gadamer’s hermeneutics to both consider the relation one has with regard to a text and to clarify who exactly the Other might be. I conclude by trying to rehabilitate the idea of author but couch this in Gadamerian terms, it is the world view or horizon of the text that we encounter as other and I name this ‘author’. My consideration of Gadamer confirms that we feel that we encounter alterity in literature and he suggests a way to say something about this that does not annihilate otherness. I then return to the problem of literature for Levinas and find that I can answer the question of the thesis affirmatively, with some qualification. I argue that the Levinasian encounter is best understood by analogy to the Kantian sublime. We cannot encounter the Other at all except through experiences that signify or remind us of this primordial encounter. Lived encounters with the other are structurally similar to and signify the encounter with the Other which in turn gives the everyday encounters their meaning. I combine this interpretation with Jean Baudrillard’s argument regarding representation in photography which posits a view of a productive presentation of the fiction of reality rather than a hollow representation of an absent reality. With a positive answer to the question of the thesis in hand, I read Edgar Allan Poe’s short story, ‘The Purloined Letter’ to explore the implications of my research in a concrete example.

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  • Harakeke fibre as reinforcement in epoxy matrix composites and its hybridisation with hemp fibre

    Le, Tan Minh (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    Over the last few decades, due to increasing global awareness of environmental issues, there has been great interest and motivation in research to develop natural fibre composites to replace glass fibre composites in certain applications. Harakeke fibre known as New Zealand flax or Phormium tenax used to be an important export material in New Zealand in the early twentieth century, but its production reduced due to the availability of synthetic fibres midcentury and competition from other natural fibres such as sisal and flax. Now, harakeke plants are planted mainly for landscaping with some fibre extracted from harakeke leaves used for craft goods and traditional products of Maori people who were the earliest settlers in New Zealand. Only two family workshops in the country are currently extracting harakeke fibre for this purpose. The aim of this thesis was to assess if harakeke fibre has potential for reinforcement in polymer composites and to assess the hybridisation of harakeke/hemp hybrid composites. Both short and long fibres were used as reinforcement, while a low viscosity epoxy resin was used as the matrix. Short fibres were alkali treated before being used to reinforce epoxy, while long fibres were used as supplied. Short and long fibres were aligned using dynamic sheet forming and manual carding, respectively. Composites were produced using hand lay-up and compression moulding. The physical and mechanical properties of fibres and composites were tested following ASTM and ISO standards. The surfaces of fibres and fracture surfaces of composites were assessed microscopically using optical microscopes and scanning electron microscope (SEM). Short harakeke and hemp fibres were alkali treated at elevated temperatures in a fibre pulping digester with a solution of 2wt% NaOH or 5wt% NaOH/2wt% Na2SO3. Single fibre tensile testing was carried out on untreated and treated fibres. It was found that harakeke fibre treated with NaOH and hemp fibre treated with NaOH/Na2SO3 retained their tensile strength and Young’s modulus compared to the untreated, while harakeke fibre treated with NaOH/Na2SO3 was degraded. Fibre surfaces and fibre separation were evaluated revealing that fibres treated with NaOH/Na2SO3 had better separation and rougher surfaces compared to those treated with NaOH. Densities of harakeke and hemp were found to increase after alkali treatment. Fibre lumens were found to make up significant volume of fibres with 41% of single fibre volume and 21% of fibre bundle volume for harakeke fibre and 18% and 11% for hemp fibre, respectively. Lumens were found to be a major factor contributing to porosity of long aligned harakeke composites. Mechanical properties including tensile, flexural and fracture toughness of composites containing aligned short 2%NaOH treated harakeke fibre with different fibre contents were evaluated and compared with randomly oriented harakeke/epoxy composites. It was found that all properties increased with fibre content. Tensile strength and Young’s modulus of the aligned short fibre composites at the optimum fibre content of 46wt% were 136 MPa and 10.5 GPa, respectively. These values are higher than any reported in the literature to date for natural fibre composites excluding those where hand-layup or a continuous fibre form has been produced and furthermore, these values overlap with those achieved using these procedures. Mechanical properties of aligned long harakeke composites were also evaluated. The tensile strength and Young’s modulus were comparable to those for sisal and hemp composites in the literature and their specific values were comparable to those for glass fibre composites. Impact strength and fracture toughness of harakeke fibre composites that have not been seen previously in the literature were found to be 132 KJ/m2 and 7.69 MPa.m-1/2, respectively, at a fibre content of 63wt% for aligned long harakeke/epoxy composites. These values are higher than any reported in the literature to date for natural fibre polymer composites. A Rule of Mixtures based model was developed for predicting aligned long harakeke fibre composite strength with the assumption that composites fail when fibres with the lowest failure strains failed and considering the effect of porosity. It was found that porosity affected tensile strength as well as Young’s modulus of the composites. Aligned long or short harakeke/hemp hybrid biocomposites were prepared with different fibre lay-up and weight ratios between harakeke and hemp and their mechanical properties were assessed. While tensile properties, impact strength and fracture toughness (KIC) of the harakeke/hemp hybrid biocomposites were found to be independent on fibre lay-up, flexural properties were found to be dependent as would be expected due to the influence of second moment of area. The fibre failure strain based hybrid effect (FS hybrid effect) defined as the enhancement of low elongation fibre due to presence of high elongation fibre in composite and the Rule of Mixtures based hybrid effect (ROM hybrid effect) termed as the deviation of a certain property from the Rule of Mixtures were assessed for harakeke/hemp hybrid biocomposites. While the FS hybrid effect was found not to be observed, ROM positive hybrid effects were found to be observed for fracture toughness of aligned short harakeke/hemp hybrid biocomposites with different fibre lay-ups and different relative fibre contents. ROM positive hybrid effects were also found to be observed for flexural modulus for comingled harakeke/hemp fibre composites at different relative fibre contents. Tensile properties and impact strength were found to obey the Rule of Mixtures.

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  • Developing groundwater and surface water interaction methods for complex hydrological systems

    Shokri, Ali (2016)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Waikato

    Methods and models associated with the interaction of surface-subsurface water flow have been widely employed in many environmental studies over the last decade. However, in spite of considerable effort, understanding the impact of both artificial and natural aspects of the connection between surface water and groundwater systems still remains a challenge for groundwater and surface water models. In this doctoral study, two types of complex and integrated problems are identified as knowledge gaps in coupled surface and subsurface flow studies (i) interaction situations that arise from use of artificial drains in agricultural catchments, and (ii) complex flow situations that sometimes arise as a result of a combination of near surface aquifers which are both perched and leaky. The specific objectives of this research project were (1) to improve classical tile drain spacing design methods; and (2) via a case study, to assess the role of semi-impermeable layers influencing the interaction between surface water and a regional groundwater system. To meet the first objective the DrainFlow code is developed. DrainFlow is a new, fully distributed, physically based and integrated surface-subsurface flow code that is designed for water movement in tile/mole drains, open drains, and saturated/unsaturated zones. DrainFlow, applied to examples of drainage studies, is found to be quite flexible in terms of changing all or part of the model dimensions as required by problem complexity, scale, and data availability. This flexibility gives DrainFlow the capacity to be modified to meet the specific requirements of varying scale and boundary conditions as often encountered in drainage projects. In addition, the classical well-known Hooghoudt drain spacing equation is modified. It is shown via comparison with numerical models that the Hooghoudt equation can overestimate water table height and therefore yield drain spacings which may be too wide. The modified expression yields improved accuracy as measured against the numerical reference model. To meet the second objective, the effect of a thin semi-impermeable and fractured layer between two relatively permeable volcanic formations is investigated in an industrial catchment system at Kawerau, New Zealand. It is concluded that subtle near-surface geological features may have a critical role on controlling the volume and pattern of the flow exchange between the surface, subsurface flow and regional groundwater systems. This doctoral thesis overcomes some weaknesses of isolated surface and subsurface flow models and some constructive and practical approaches are developed to enhance the previous methods.

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