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    48997 research outputs found

    Transition, the evolution of stock market efficiency and entry into EU: the case of Romania

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    In this paper we demonstrate that the measurement of stock market efficiency is an important activity in establishing whether eastern European countries satisfy the Copenhagen Criteria for EU membership. Specifically, we argue that developing an efficient stock market should be an important policy focus for countries with aspirations to join the EU as it helps to demonstrate the existence of a functioning market economy. We illustrate this issue by examining the evolution of stock market efficiency in the Bucharest Stock Exchange from its inception until September 2002. We use a GARCH model on daily price data and model the disturbances using the Student-t distribution to allow for ‘fat-tails’. We find strong evidence of inefficiency in the Bucharest Stock Exchange in that the lagged stock price index is a significant predictor of the current price index. This result is robust to the inclusion of variables controlling for calendar effects of the sort that have been observed in more developed stock markets. The level of inefficiency appears to diminish over time and we find evidence consistent with stock market efficiency in Romania after January 2000

    On civil defence and the staging of modern politics

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    Silver-Based Hybrid Materials from meta- or para-Phosphonobenzoic Acid: Influence of the Topology on Silver Release in Water

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    Three novel silver-based Metal Organic Frameworks materials which were synthesized from either 3-phosphono or 4-phosphonobenzoic acid and silver nitrate are reported. The novel hybrids were synthesized under hydrothermal conditions; the pH of the reaction media was controlled by adding different quantities of urea thereby producing different topologies. Compound 1 (Ag3(4-PO3-C6H4-COO)), synthesised in presence of urea, exhibits a compact 3D structure in which both phosphonic acid and carboxylic acid functional groups are linked to the silver-based inorganic network. Compound 2 (Ag(4-PO3H-C6H4-COOH)), which was synthesized at lower pH (without urea), has a layered structure in which only the phosphonic acid functional groups from 4-phosphonobenzoic acid moieties are linked to the silver inorganic network; the carboxylic acid groups being engaged in hydrogen bonds. Finally, material 3 (Ag(3-PO3H-C6H4-COOH)) was synthesised from 3-phosphonobenzoic acid and silver nitrate without urea. This material 3 features a layered structure exhibiting carboxylic acid functional groups linked via hydrogen bonds in the interlayer space. After the full characterization of these materials (single X-ray structure, IR, TGA), their ability to release silver salts in aqueous environment was measured. Silver release, determined in aqueous solution by cathodic stripping voltammetry, shows that the silver release capacity of these materials is dependent on the topology of the hybrids. The more compact structure 1 is extremely stable in water with only trace levels of silver ions being detected. On the other hand, compounds 2 and 3, in which only the phosphonic acid functional groups were bonded to the inorganic network, released larger quantities of silver ions into aqueous solution. These results which were compared with the silver release of the previously described compound 4 (Ag6(3-PO3-C6H4-COO)2). The results clearly show that the release capacity of silver-based metal organic framework can be tuned by modifying their topology which, in the present study, is governed by the regio-isomer of the organic precursor and the synthetic conditions under which the hybrids are prepared

    Student projects and the London Olympics in 2012: teaching and learning through modelling sporting performances

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    Influence of oxidative stress, diaphragm fatigue, and inspiratory muscle training on the plasma cytokine response to maximum sustainable voluntary ventilation

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    The influence of oxidative stress, diaphragm fatigue, and inspiratory muscle training (IMT) on the cytokine response to maximum sustainable voluntary ventilation (MSVV) is unknown. Twelve healthy males were divided equally into an IMT or placebo (PLA) group, and before and after a 6-wk intervention they undertook, on separate days, 1h of (1) passive rest and (2) MSVV, whereby participants undertook volitional hyperpnea at rest that mimicked the breathing and respiratory muscle recruitment patterns commensurate with heavy cycling exercise. Plasma cytokines remained unchanged during passive rest. There was a main effect of time (P < 0.01) for plasma interleukin-1 (IL-1) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) concentrations and a strong trend (P = 0.067) for plasma interleukin-1 receptor antagonist concentration during MSVV. Plasma IL-6 concentration was reduced after IMT by 27 + 18% (main effect of intervention, P = 0.029), whereas there was no change after PLA (P = 0.753). There was no increase in a systemic marker of oxidative stress [DNA damage in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC)], and diaphragm fatigue was not related to the increases in plasma IL-1 and IL-6 concentrations. A dose-response relationship was observed between respiratory muscle work and minute ventilation and increases in plasma IL-6 concentration. In conclusion, increases in plasma IL-1 and IL-6 concentrations during MSVV were not due to diaphragm fatigue or DNA damage in PBMC. Increases in plasma IL-6 concentration during MSVV are attenuated following IMT, and the plasma IL-6 response is dependent upon the level of respiratory muscle work and minute ventilation

    Striving to achieve it all: men and work-family-life balance in Sweden and the UK - implications for well-being and HRM

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    Our research paper investigates how men voice their experiences of the three dimensions of well-being: happiness, health and relationships (after Van de Voorde et al., 2012) in balancing their work and non-work lives. We discuss how their perceptions and practice relate to human resource management (HRM) in the workplace, and identify the key tensions in managing their engagement and well-being. This paper builds on research published in Construction Management and Economics in August 2013 (Vol. 31, No. 8: Raiden and Räisänen, pp. 899-913) where we critique the work-life balance literature for largely limiting the construct as being a female-oriented entitlement. Consequently, little attention has been paid to how men experience their work-life situations, especially the men who are keen to share the family care. We contribute to filling this gap by critically examining how male academics in construction-related departments at Universities in Sweden and the UK construct their relationships with family and work. The data consisted of the career-life stories of seven male academics from each country. These were at different phases in their career trajectories and held different university positions. A narrative analysis approach was then applied on the data. Three core narratives emerged: family connected with partner; work as key priority; and desire to pursue personal projects, which competed with each other for the narrators’ sparse time. A salient feature of all the narratives was the men’s struggle to accommodate family and (personal) life with work, which to them was the prioritised sphere. This struggle left many feeling that they had no time to do a good job in any sphere, and in Sweden in particular the combination pressure was intense. In this study, well-being emerged as a critical albeit difficult to articulate feature since it was embedded in all the three elements of the work-family-life triad, often with conflicting outcomes. The purpose here, therefore, is to revisit the data using a well-being lens

    Interactive television gambling: a matter for concern?

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    Historical-institutionalist perspectives on the development of the EU budget system

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    The EU budget has only recently started to feature in theories of European integration. Studies typically adopt a historical-institutionalist framework, exploring notions such as path dependency. They have, however, generally been rather aggregated, or coarse-grained, in their approach. The EU budget has thus been treated as a single entity rather than a series of inter-linked institutions. This paper seeks to address these lacunae by adopting a fine-grained approach. This enables us to emphasize the connections that exist between EU budgetary institutions, in both time and space. We show that the initial set of budgetary institutions was unable, over time, to achieve consistently their treaty-based objectives. In response, rather than reform these institutions at potentially high political cost, additional institutions were layered on top of the extant structures. We thus demonstrate how some EU budgetary institutions have remained unchanged, whilst others have been added or changed over time

    Substituted BEDT-TTF derivatives: synthesis, chirality, properties and potential applications

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    The increasing availability of functionalized BEDT-TTF derivatives in both racemic and enantiopure forms opens up great opportunities for preparing multifunctional materials and chiral conducting systems in the form of crystals, thin films and polymers. Functionalities such as amino and carboxyl will allow attachment to other molecular systems, while intermolecular interactions between substituents, e.g. hydrogen bonding and halegon- - - halegon interactions, provides additional tools for designing solid state radical cation structures. In this review the syntheses of substituted derivatives of BEDT-TTF and closely related donors are surveyed, along with the structures and properties of the radical cation salts so far prepared, as a stimulus for future application of these versatile and attractive molecules. Particular attention is paid to the preparation of single enantiomers, and to the stereochemical consequences of the synthetic procedures

    Depression and the natural world: towards a critical ecology of psychological distress

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    Researchers have struggled to explain the dramatic increase in diagnoses of ‘depression’ in the industrialised world. This paper argues that psychological distress is likely to arise within an ecological context that is becoming increasingly degraded, and in which the character of selfhood is being redefined to fit an industrialised context. In turn, these redefinitions of selfhood reduce our capacity to address ecological concerns. I argue that it is only possible to recognise the connections between human well-being and ecological health if we identify and challenge the dissociations and repressions on which the ‘business as usual’ of industrial society depends, and that a more embodied conception of the person is fundamental to this recovery of our wholeness. More specifically, I argue that our current reliance on cognition and our corresponding marginalisation of sensing and feeling, in addition to undermining human well-being, may be ecologically catastrophic


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