458 research outputs found

    Neoliberalisation of industrial relations: The ideational development of Dutch employers’ organisations between 1976 and 2019

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    This article considers the debate about the process of liberalisation of industrial relations from an ideational institutional perspective. While the gradual liberalisation of industrial relations has increased employer discretion, the role of employers’ organisations in this process is unclear. The case study is the Netherlands, a neo-corporatist country described as stable and robust but where institutional outcomes have undergone major shifts. To understand how this happened, the author analysed 40 years of collective bargaining policy using an ideational approach. The article argues that Dutch organised employers had the confidence that the strength of their ideas was enough to gradually but surely change industrial relations within the existing neo-corporatist framework by redefining the role of the firm, the state and the employee in the economy. The article also shows that since the early 2010s Dutch organised employers have changed their strategy leading to further de-collectivisation of industrial relations

    Inclusive growth through collective bargaining in the Netherlands

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    New methodological perspectives on the valuation of ecosystem services: toward a dynamic-integrated valuation approach.

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    The main objective of this paper is to present what is considered as methodological perspectives in the field of valuation of ecosystem services. The contributions presented here are based on the general assumption that if, on the one hand, we can recognize the inadequacy of the isolated use of the valuation methods, on the other we assume that efforts to refine and expand the scope of ecosystem services valuation should consider the progress already made, not ignoring altogether methods already used. Based on the stance that there should be a joining of efforts to improve the accuracy of ecosystem services valuation and starting from the assumption that the complexity and uncertainty surrounding ecosystem services require a trans-disciplinary analysis, the contribution beckons an approach referred to here as dynamic-integrated. It is dynamic because it considers the trajectory of ecosystem services over time in terms of its main drivers of change (land use dynamic, for example), and integrated in that it takes into account not just the economic values but other dimensions of ecosystem services values

    Staphylococcus aureus biofilm formation at the physiologic glucose concentration depends on the S. aureus lineage

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Since bacteria embedded in biofilms are far more difficult to eradicate than planktonic infections, it would be useful to know whether certain <it>Staphylococcus aureus </it>lineages are especially involved in strong biofilm formation. For this reason, <it>in vitro </it>biofilm formation of 228 clinical <it>S. aureus </it>isolates of distinct clonal lineages was investigated.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>At 0.1% glucose, more than 60% of the <it>S. aureus </it>strains associated with multilocus sequence typing (MLST) clonal complex (CC)8 produced large amounts of biomass, compared to 0-7% for various other clonal lineages. Additionally, <it>S. aureus </it>bloodstream isolates associated with MLST CC8 and CC7 had similar biofilm forming capacities as their commensal counterparts. Furthermore, strong biofilm formation could not be attributed to a specific accessory gene regulator (<it>agr</it>) genotype, as suggested previously. The <it>agr </it>genotypes were strictly associated with the clonal lineages. Moreover, strong biofilm formation was not related to slime formation. Congo red agar (CRA) screening is therefore not useful as a qualitative screening method for biofilm formation.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>The adherence to polystyrene surfaces under physiologic glucose concentration (0.1%) was dependent on the clonal lineage. Strains associated with MLST CC8 were markedly more often classified as strong biofilm former at glucose concentrations of 0%, 0.1% and 0.25%.</p> <p>The present study reveals that the MLST CC8 associated genetic background was a predisposing factor for strong biofilm formation <it>in vitro</it>, under all tested glucose concentrations.</p

    Primary vs. Secondary Antibody Deficiency: Clinical Features and Infection Outcomes of Immunoglobulin Replacement

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    <div><p>Secondary antibody deficiency can occur as a result of haematological malignancies or certain medications, but not much is known about the clinical and immunological features of this group of patients as a whole. Here we describe a cohort of 167 patients with primary or secondary antibody deficiencies on immunoglobulin (Ig)-replacement treatment. The demographics, causes of immunodeficiency, diagnostic delay, clinical and laboratory features, and infection frequency were analysed retrospectively. Chemotherapy for B cell lymphoma and the use of Rituximab, corticosteroids or immunosuppressive medications were the most common causes of secondary antibody deficiency in this cohort. There was no difference in diagnostic delay or bronchiectasis between primary and secondary antibody deficiency patients, and both groups experienced disorders associated with immune dysregulation. Secondary antibody deficiency patients had similar baseline levels of serum IgG, but higher IgM and IgA, and a higher frequency of switched memory B cells than primary antibody deficiency patients. Serious and non-serious infections before and after Ig-replacement were also compared in both groups. Although secondary antibody deficiency patients had more serious infections before initiation of Ig-replacement, treatment resulted in a significant reduction of serious and non-serious infections in both primary and secondary antibody deficiency patients. Patients with secondary antibody deficiency experience similar delays in diagnosis as primary antibody deficiency patients and can also benefit from immunoglobulin-replacement treatment.</p></div

    Functional MRI of Auditory Responses in the Zebra Finch Forebrain Reveals a Hierarchical Organisation Based on Signal Strength but Not Selectivity

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    BACKGROUND: Male songbirds learn their songs from an adult tutor when they are young. A network of brain nuclei known as the 'song system' is the likely neural substrate for sensorimotor learning and production of song, but the neural networks involved in processing the auditory feedback signals necessary for song learning and maintenance remain unknown. Determining which regions show preferential responsiveness to the bird's own song (BOS) is of great importance because neurons sensitive to self-generated vocalisations could mediate this auditory feedback process. Neurons in the song nuclei and in a secondary auditory area, the caudal medial mesopallium (CMM), show selective responses to the BOS. The aim of the present study is to investigate the emergence of BOS selectivity within the network of primary auditory sub-regions in the avian pallium. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Using blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) fMRI, we investigated neural responsiveness to natural and manipulated self-generated vocalisations and compared the selectivity for BOS and conspecific song in different sub-regions of the thalamo-recipient area Field L. Zebra finch males were exposed to conspecific song, BOS and to synthetic variations on BOS that differed in spectro-temporal and/or modulation phase structure. We found significant differences in the strength of BOLD responses between regions L2a, L2b and CMM, but no inter-stimuli differences within regions. In particular, we have shown that the overall signal strength to song and synthetic variations thereof was different within two sub-regions of Field L2: zone L2a was significantly more activated compared to the adjacent sub-region L2b. CONCLUSIONS: Based on our results we suggest that unlike nuclei in the song system, sub-regions in the primary auditory pallium do not show selectivity for the BOS, but appear to show different levels of activity with exposure to any sound according to their place in the auditory processing stream
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