3,577 research outputs found

    The production and diffusion of policy knowledge

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    "The published works of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) represent the most immediate and tangible measure of the new policy-related knowledge attributable to the institute, its staff, and research partners. This study provides a quantitative assessment of the number, nature, form, and use of IFPRI's published products since 1979 and compares and contrasts that with the publication performance of several similar agencies, including the economics and social sciences programs of the Centro Internacional de Mejoramiento de Maíz y Trigo (CIMMYT) and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) respectively, the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics (ABARE), the Bangladesh Institute for Development Studies (BIDS), and the now defunct Stanford University Food Research Institute (SFRI). Overall, IFPRI's circulated output is extensive, published not only in a broad portfolio of leading scholarly journals, but also in a wide range of books, technical reports, and extension documents. The amount of published output has tended to increase throughout IFPRI's history, and it continues to do so. Going beyond counting and classifying IFPRI's published record, we report the results of a bibliometric assessment of IFPRI and the comparison institutes for the period 1981–96 using the publication and citation performance details recorded in the Institute for Scientific Information's (ISI) Science Citation Index and Social Science Citation Index data bases. Citations to published literature are not indicative of an impact on policy or the economy generally but on further research and analysis. An analysis of coauthorship patterns provides an indication of impact too (more directly through the conduct of joint research), as well as indications of the way the research is carried out. Our analysis reveals the role IFPRI plays as a knowledge intermediary between the scholarly community and policy clienteles, but that a high proportion of its research collaborations leading to formal publications (and especially publications in the leading journals covered in ISI's data bases) involve researchers in advanced agencies. This partly reflects the limited capacity to perform food policy research in many developing countries — itself a reflection of local priorities for education and limited, long-term international support to increase scientific capacity in developing countries — and also underscores the role IFPRI could, and arguably should, play in redressing this state of affairs." Authors' AbstractInternational Food Policy Research Institute History ,Research institutes Evaluation ,Communication in learning and scholarship ,Bibliometrics ,Information science Statistical methods ,Knowledge management ,International Food Policy Research Institute Communications systems Evaluation ,Food policy Research ,

    Roosting ecology of endangered plant‐roosting bats on Okinawa Island: Implications for bat‐friendly forestry practices

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    Roosting information is crucial to guiding bat conservation and bat-friendly forestry practices. The Ryukyu tube-nosed bat Murina ryukyuana (Endangered) and Yanbaru whiskered bat Myotis yanbarensis (Critically Endangered) are forest-dwelling bats endemic to the central Ryukyu Archipelago, Japan. Despite their threatened status, little is known about the roosting ecology of these species and the characteristics of natural maternity roosts are unknown. To inform sustainable forestry practices and conservation management, we radio-tracked day roosts of both species in the subtropical forests of Okinawa's Kunigami Village District. We compared roost and roost site characteristics statistically between M. ryukyuana nonmaternity roosts (males or nonreproductive females), maternity roosts, and all M. yanbarensis roosts. Generalized linear models were used to investigate roost site selection by M. ryukyuana irrespective of sex and age class. Lastly, we compiled data on phenology from this and prior studies. Nonreproductive M. ryukyuana roosted alone and primarily in understory foliage. Murina ryukyuana maternity roosts were limited to stands >50 years old, and ~60% were in foliage. Myotis yanbarensis roosted almost entirely in cavities along gulch bottoms and only in stands >70 years old (~1/3 of Kunigami's total forest area). Murina ryukyuana maternity roosts were higher (4.3 ± 0.6 m) than conspecific nonmaternity roosts (2.3 ± 0.5 m; p <.001) and M. yanbarensis roosts (2.7 ± 0.5 m; not significant). Model results were inconclusive. Both species appear to be obligate plant roosters throughout their life cycle, but the less flexible roosting preferences of M. yanbarensis may explain its striking rarity. To conserve these threatened bats, we recommend the following forestry practices: (a) reduce clearing of understory vegetation, (b) refrain from removing trees along streams, (c) promote greater tree cavity densities by protecting old-growth forests and retaining snags, and (d) refrain from removing trees or understory between April and July, while bats are pupping.コウモリのねぐらに関する生態学的な情報はコウモリの保全とそれを考慮する森林の施業のために重要である。リュウキュウテングコウモリMurina ryukyuana(絶滅危惧)とヤンバルホオヒゲコウモリMyotis yanbarensis(絶滅寸前)は森林性コウモリで、日本の琉球列島中部における固有種である。絶滅の恐れがある種にもかかわらず、これらの種のねぐらに関する生態については情報が不足しており、自然条件下における母子集団のねぐらの特徴は明らかになっていない。持続可能な森林施業と保全に関わる情報を提供するために、沖縄島国頭村における亜熱帯林で両種の昼間のねぐらの場所や特徴を、ラジオテレメトリー法によって個体を追跡することによって調査した。リュウキュウテングコウモリの非母子集団ねぐら(雄または非繁殖雌)、母子集団ねぐら、及び全てのヤンバルホオヒゲコウモリのねぐらの間で、ねぐらとねぐらの場所の特徴を統計的に比較した。一般化線形モデルを用いて、性別や年齢階級を考慮しない条件でリュウキュウテングコウモリによるねぐら場所の選好性を調査した。最後に、本研究と先行研究から、ねぐらに関わるフェノロジーに関するデータを収集・整理した。非生殖のリュウキュウテングコウモリは単独で、主に下層植生の葉をねぐらとして利用した。リュウキュウテングコウモリの母子集団のねぐらとしての利用は林齢50年以上の林分に限定され、約60%が葉であった。ヤンバルホオヒゲコウモリはほぼ完全に谷底の樹洞をねぐらとして利用し、ねぐらの形成は林齢70年以上の林分に限られていた(国頭村における森林面積の約1/3)。リュウキュウテングコウモリの母子集団ねぐらは同種の非母子集団ねぐら(2.3 ± 0.5 m; p < .001)とヤンバルホオヒゲコウモリのねぐら(2.7 ± 0.5 m; not significant)より高い位置にあった(4.3 ± 0.6 m)。モデルによる推定結果は決定的ではなかった。両種はライフサイクルの間ずっと偏性的な植物性コウモリであるようだが、ヤンバルホオヒゲコウモリの選好は柔軟性が低く、このことが本種の際だった希少性を説明する可能性がある。これらの絶滅危惧種であるコウモリを保全するためには、以下の森林施業が提案できる:(a)下層植生の除去を少なくすること、(b)渓流沿いの樹木の伐採を控えること、(c)高林齢の森林を保存し、枯死木も除去せず、樹洞の密度を確保すること、(d)コウモリが子育てしている時期である4月〜7月の間に、樹木と下層植生の除去を控えることである

    Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) In Information Systems Research: Status Quo, Guidelines, and Future Directions

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    Qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) allows researchers to study how configurations of conditions lead to outcomes and, thereby, richly explain the dynamics of complex digital phenomena. To advance discussion on QCA in the information systems (IS) discipline, we introduce its fundamental concepts and offer guidelines for authors on how to apply QCA to advance IS research. We also provide checklists for reviewers of QCA papers. We illustrate how to apply our guidelines through two exemplar studies. In the first exemplar study, we focus on IT-business strategic alignment to study the influence that different forms of alignment have on firm performance. In the second exemplar study, we use the perspective of the integrated technology acceptance model to explain an individual’s intention to use a digital assistant. The contrasting results from both studies highlight how to use QCA to derive robust and reproducible results. By doing so, we contribute to encouraging IS scholars to use QCA to develop sophisticated models that accurately depict real-world IS phenomena

    Structural diversity in the type IV pili of multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter

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    Acinetobacter baumannii is a Gram-negative coccobacillus found primarily in hospital settings that has recently emerged as a source of hospital-acquired infections. A. baumannii expresses a variety of virulence factors, including type IV pili, bacterial extracellular appendages often essential for attachment to host cells. Here, we report the high resolution structures of the major pilin subunit, PilA, from three Acinetobacter strains, demonstrating thatA. baumannii subsets produce morphologically distinct type IV pilin glycoproteins. We examine the consequences of this heterogeneity for protein folding and assembly as well as host-cell adhesion by Acinetobacter. Comparisons of genomic and structural data with pilin proteins from other species of soil gammaproteobacteria suggest that these structural differences stem from evolutionary pressure that has resulted in three distinct classes of type IVa pilins, each found in multiple species

    The Multiscale Backbone of the Human Phenotype Network Based on Biological Pathways

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    Background: Networks are commonly used to represent and analyze large and complex systems of interacting elements. In systems biology, human disease networks show interactions between disorders sharing common genetic background. We built pathway-based human phenotype network (PHPN) of over 800 physical attributes, diseases, and behavioral traits; based on about 2,300 genes and 1,200 biological pathways. Using GWAS phenotype-to-genes associations, and pathway data from Reactome, we connect human traits based on the common patterns of human biological pathways, detecting more pleiotropic effects, and expanding previous studies from a gene-centric approach to that of shared cell-processes. Results: The resulting network has a heavily right-skewed degree distribution, placing it in the scale-free region of the network topologies spectrum. We extract the multi-scale information backbone of the PHPN based on the local densities of the network and discarding weak connection. Using a standard community detection algorithm, we construct phenotype modules of similar traits without applying expert biological knowledge. These modules can be assimilated to the disease classes. However, we are able to classify phenotypes according to shared biology, and not arbitrary disease classes. We present examples of expected clinical connections identified by PHPN as proof of principle. Conclusions: We unveil a previously uncharacterized connection between phenotype modules and discuss potential mechanistic connections that are obvious only in retrospect. The PHPN shows tremendous potential to become a useful tool both in the unveiling of the diseases’ common biology, and in the elaboration of diagnosis and treatments

    Global projections of flash drought show increased risk in a warming climate

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    Flash drought, characterized by unusually rapid drying, can have substantial impact on many socioeconomic sectors, particularly agriculture. However, potential changes to flash drought risk in a warming climate remain unknown. In this study, projected changes in flash drought frequency and cropland risk from flash drought are quantified using global climate model simulations. We find that flash drought occurrence is expected to increase globally among all scenarios, with the sharpest increases seen in scenarios with higher radiative forcing and greater fossil fuel usage. Flash drought risk over cropland is expected to increase globally, with the largest increases projected across North America (change in annual risk from 32% in 2015 to 49% in 2100) and Europe (32% to 53%) in the most extreme emissions scenario. Following low-end and medium scenarios compared to high-end scenarios indicates a notable reduction in annual flash drought risk over cropland

    A Gene Expression Fingerprint of C. Elegans Embryonic Motor Neurons

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    Differential gene expression specifies the highly diverse cell types that constitute the nervous system. With its sequenced genome and simple, well-defined neuroanatomy, the nematode C. elegans is a useful model system in which to correlate gene expression with neuron identity. The UNC-4 transcription factor is expressed in thirteen embryonic motor neurons where it specifies axonal morphology and synaptic function. These cells can be marked with an unc-4::GFP reporter transgene. Here we describe a powerful strategy, Micro-Array Profiling of C. elegans cells (MAPCeL), and confirm that this approach provides a comprehensive gene expression profile of unc-4::GFP motor neurons in vivo.

    Gemini Planet Imager Observational Calibrations VI: Photometric and Spectroscopic Calibration for the Integral Field Spectrograph

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    The Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) is a new facility instrument for the Gemini Observatory designed to provide direct detection and characterization of planets and debris disks around stars in the solar neighborhood. In addition to its extreme adaptive optics and corona graphic systems which give access to high angular resolution and high-contrast imaging capabilities, GPI contains an integral field spectrograph providing low resolution spectroscopy across five bands between 0.95 and 2.5 μ\mum. This paper describes the sequence of processing steps required for the spectro-photometric calibration of GPI science data, and the necessary calibration files. Based on calibration observations of the white dwarf HD 8049B we estimate that the systematic error in spectra extracted from GPI observations is less than 5%. The flux ratio of the occulted star and fiducial satellite spots within coronagraphic GPI observations, required to estimate the magnitude difference between a target and any resolved companions, was measured in the HH-band to be Δm=9.23±0.06\Delta m = 9.23\pm0.06 in laboratory measurements and Δm=9.39±0.11\Delta m = 9.39\pm 0.11 using on-sky observations. Laboratory measurements for the YY, JJ, K1K1 and K2K2 filters are also presented. The total throughput of GPI, Gemini South and the atmosphere of the Earth was also measured in each photometric passband, with a typical throughput in HH-band of 18% in the non-coronagraphic mode, with some variation observed over the six-month period for which observations were available. We also report ongoing development and improvement of the data cube extraction algorithm.Comment: 15 pages, 6 figures. Proceedings of the SPIE, 9147-30
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