20,092 research outputs found

    How to characterize and influence the customer journey: The case of the purchase of counterfeit luxury products

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    Dissertation presented as the partial requirement for obtaining a Master's degree in Statistics and Information Management, specialization in Marketing Research and CRMCounterfeiting of famous luxury brands with high visibility is an ever-growing global industry. Customers who purchase counterfeit luxury products seek social status or social approval. The seek for social status, or social approval creates the need to purchase a product from a brand that is easy to recognize when exposed to others (i.e. brand prominence). Moreover, with the growth of the counterfeiting phenomenon through social media platforms, customers can obtain information about the product in a fast and accessible way, and new buying behaviors emerge. Thus, this research's main objective is to comprehend how to characterize and influence a counterfeit luxury product's purchase customer journey. It intends to understand the impact of individual and interpersonal factors on customer attitudes towards counterfeiting and comprehend if a counterfeit luxury product's purchase increases brand attachment and customer satisfaction. The findings, obtained through exploratory research, underline that counterfeit luxury products are linked to easy and rapid brand recognition for female customers. The research shows that individual and interpersonal types of factors influence this type of product's purchase intention. Also, and although there is no influence of customer-brand attachment on customer satisfaction, it was found that personal motivations (as an individual factor) positively influence the customer-brand attachment

    Spectroscopic study of doped nanoparticles for anti-counterfeiting applications

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    The work of my thesis is aimed at the optical characterization of crystal nanoparticles doped with rare earth ions for anti-counterfeiting technology. Five compositions of different crystal matrices doped with Nd, Er, Ho and YbEr were studied. The doped matrices were chosen on the basis of their physical and chemical properties like thermal properties and resistance to oxidation and degradation, while the dopants were chosen on the basis of their expected emission properties in the Visible and Near InfraRed (NIR) region such as, a large collection of atom-like emission bands, which cover the whole spectral range from UV to IR with long life times, i.e. from microseconds up to milliseconds. Furthermore, these emissions are extremely stable and produced by peculiar processes, such as upconversion or cross-relaxation. Thanks to these properties it is possible to think of creating a multi-level security code that could be spatially, spectrally and temporally encoded. A thorough spectroscopic analysis is therefore required to assess the potentialities of various compositions to this purpose. For each sample the absorption and emission spectra and the lifetime of the various levels were recorded both in visible and infrared regions. We also studied the stability of the spectroscopic features as a function of the sample around room temperature. The goal is to identify compounds that show intense and stable emissions to be used for a robust anti-counterfeiting technology

    Blockchain e filiera agroalimentare. L'evoluzione nel contesto nazionale, europeo e internazionale. Disamina dei principali documenti e casi d'uso

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    Questo elaborato è stato sviluppato nel tentativo di fare chiarezza sulla tenuta del modello tradizionale alla base della filiera agroalimentare, con la continua espansione ed evoluzione della tecnologia Blockchain, ritenuta nella letteratura scientifica moderna, una soluzione digitale innovativa e rivoluzionaria capace di ridisegnare l’assetto dei vecchi rapporti economici. Utilizzando un approccio multilivello verranno analizzati la pluralità di progetti messi a punto dalle diverse realtà aziendali nel contesto nazionale, europeo ed internazionale, seguendo le direttive di una legislazione quasi inesistente, causa della maggior parte delle disfunzioni caratterizzanti l’adozione generalizzata della tecnologia blockchain. Attraverso l’analisi dei principali documenti e casi d’uso verrà valutato il consenso sottostante all’utilizzazione di siffatto strumento, rientrante tra le altre cose nelle prerogative della nuova “agricoltura 4.0”, favorendo un accostamento con altre tecnologie digitali e all’Internet of Things, in modo da permettere lo sviluppo di un comparto sostenibile e resiliente, potendo intervenire dinanzi alle principali criticità che rendono questo settore più vulnerabile rispetto ad altri comparti produttivi. Sebbene gli obiettivi siano omogenei tra loro, possiamo notare come siano state maggiormente perseguite soluzioni che rispecchiassero le esigenze intrinseche delle diverse realtà di riferimento e delle relative regolazioni di settore: la lotta alla contraffazione e alle frodi alimentari, la tutela del “Made in Italy”, della qualità e delle denominazioni di origine; la tracciabilità e la rintracciabilità dei prodotti a tutela di una sicurezza alimentare ed una collaborazione più stringente tra gli operatori di filiera, al fine di favorire una maggior consapevolezza nei confronti del consumatore finale; l’equalizzazione dei prezzi e la redistribuzione della ricchezza. Tenendo in considerazione tutti questi obiettivi, sarà nostro compito interrogarci e cercare di evidenziare le numerose declinazioni dello strumento e le principali criticità se applicato al comparto agroalimentare. Una filiera, quella in esame, che ha finito per consolidare il suo assetto multifunzionale entro un’accezione di agricoltura e di produzione agroindustriale che hanno cambiato connotati nel corso degli anni, non rimanendo esclusivamente relegate alle richieste di soddisfacimento del fabbisogno nutrizionale della società ma divenendo espressione di una logica ulteriore, assimilabile ad un concetto di sostenibilità intesa nella sua amplia configurazione in termini ambientali, economici e sociali. È in relazione a quest’ultimo profilo che concentreremo il nostro dibattito affinché possa essere analizzato il potenziale offerto dalla tecnologia blockchain come strumento caratterizzato da una flessibilità tale da potersi adattare alle numerose realtà di riferimento e rendersi così capace di poter sostenere i maggior cambiamenti sostenuti nelle ambiziose politiche agricole odierne. This paper was developed to clarify the stability of traditional model of agri-food chain, with the continuous expansion and evolution of Blockchain technology, considered in modern scientific literature, the new revolutionary archetype able to redesigne the structure of old economic relationships. Using a multilevel approach, the plurality of projects developed by the various companies in the national, european and international context, will be analyzed following the directives of an almost non-existent legislation, cause of most dysfunctions characterizing the widespread adoption of blockchain technology. Through the analysis of the main documents and use cases, it will be possible to evaluate a general adoption, falling within the prerogatives of new "agriculture 4.0", favoring an approach with other digital technologies and Internet of Things, in order to allow the development of a sustainable and resilient sector, being able to act across the main criticalities that make this sector more vulnerable than other. Although the objectives are homogeneous, we can see that solutions have been reflect the intrinsic needs of various realities and related sector regulations: the fight against counterfeiting and food fraud, the protection of "Made in Italy", quality and designations of origin; the traceability and tracking of products to protect food safety and increase the collaboration between the operators of supply chain, in order to promote greater awareness towards the final consumer; the equalization of prices and the redistribution of wealth. Taking into consideration all these objectives, it will be our task try to make compatible the numerous variations that this instrument contemplates, or to leverage the main criticalities that depend on it, according to the resistance of traditional agricultural model, in order to establish a possible acceptance, or a possible rejection, at the presence of a sector that has consolidated its multifunctional structure within the meaning of agriculture and agro-industrial production that have changed connotations over the years, not remaining exclusively relegated to satisfying the nutritional needs of society but becoming the expression of a further logic, comparable to a concept of sustainability understood in its broad configuration in environmental, economic and social terms. It’s in relation to this last profile that we will focus our debate so that the potential offered by blockchain technology can be analyzed as a tool characterized by such flexibility as to be able to adapt to the numerous reference realities and support the major changes sustained inside the difference agricultural policies today

    Modélisation du coût total de la propriété du logiciel dans Virtual Network Functions

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    Aujourd’hui, un changement massif est en cours dans les réseaux de télécommunication avec l’émergence de la softwarisation et de la cloudification. Parmi les technologies qui accompagnent ces mutations, l’une d’elles est la NFV (Network Function Virtualization). NFV est l’architecture réseau qui découple les fonctions réseau des périphériques matériels (middleboxes) à l’aide d’un composant virtuel appelé VNF (Virtual Network Function). VNF a changé le paradigme technologique des réseaux. Avant : la fonction de réseau était assurée par un équipement physique et les fournisseurs de services acquéraient sa propriété pour la durée de vie du matériel de confiance (au lieu de compter en années). Aujourd’hui, les fonctions réseau sont des logiciels que les fournisseurs de services développent ou acquièrent en achetant des licences. Une licence définit le droit d’utilisation (RTU) du logiciel. Par conséquent, si l’octroi de licences dans la NFV n’est pas géré de manière appropriée, les fournisseurs de services pourraient (1) être exposés à la contrefaçon et risquer de lourdes sanctions financières en cas de non-conformité ; (2) pourrait suracheter des licences pour couvrir des usages mal estimés. Ainsi, la maîtrise de la licence de fonction réseau via la mise en place du Software Asset Management et du FinOps (Finance et DevOps) est indispensable pour maîtriser les coûts. Dans cette recherche, notre problème principal est de minimiser le TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) du coût du logiciel (VNF), en fournissant une Qualité de Services (QoS) à un nombre spécifique d’utilisateurs. Les coûts des logiciels comprennent divers coûts, du développement à la maintenance, de l’intégration à la gestion des versions et des services professionnels. Nos recherches portent sur les logiciels propriétaires (développés par un éditeur et vendus via une licence payante). Nous avons considéré que le TCO se compose du coût de la licence du logiciel, des ressources nécessaires pour exécuter et faire fonctionner le SW, et de l’énergie consommée par cette exécution. Dans cette recherche, premièrement, nous avons identifié le besoin d’un modèle de licence VNF standardisé, qui dépend fortement de la créativité du fournisseur VNF ; Cette absence de normes expose les CSP (Communication Service Providers) au risque de devoir déléguer la gestion des droits aux fournisseurs. Par conséquent, nous avons proposé un modèle de licence basé sur les métriques, qui aide à x quantifier l’utilisation du VNF. Après avoir estimé la licence de VNF, nous avons estimé le coût de la licence. Ensuite, nous avons présenté plusieurs façons de minimiser le coût de la licence en fonction des différents cas d’utilisation, qui dépendent du scénario et des besoins de l’utilisateur. Puis après, avec l’aide des connaissances industrielles, nous avons constaté que la réduction de la consommation de ressources pour minimiser le TCO fournissant la QoS affecte le déploiement de la VNF directement ou indirectement, ce qui impacte l’octroi de licences. Ainsi, les licences et les ressources sont interdépendantes. Nous avons utilisé ces coûts pour construire le coût total du logiciel. Après cela, nous avons proposé plusieurs façons de réduire le coût total du logiciel en répondant aux exigences du client. Puis après, nous avons considéré l’énergie et son coût associé de VNF. La consommation énergétique du VNF est dépendante de la consommation des ressources, et les usages des ressources impactent la licence. Ainsi, on voit que ces trois coûts sont interdépendants : licence, ressources et coût énergétique de VNF. Par conséquent, nous considérons ces coûts et le TCO construit. Minimiser le coût total de possession en répondant aux exigences du client est un défi car il s’agit d’un multi-paramètres.Today, a massive shift is ongoing in telecommunication networks with the emergence of softwarization and cloudification. Among the technologies which are assisting these shifts, one of them is NFV (Network Function Virtualization). NFV is the network architecture that decouples network functions from hardware devices (middleboxes) with the help of a virtual component known as VNF (Virtual Network Function). VNF has shifted the network technological paradigm. Before: Network Function was performed by physical equipment, and service providers acquired its property for the lifetime of the relying hardware (instead counted in years). Today, Network functions are software that service providers develop or acquire purchasing licenses. A license defines software's Right to Use (RTU). Therefore, if licensing in NFV is not appropriately managed, service providers might (1) be exposed to counterfeiting and risk heavy financial penalties due to non-compliance; (2) might overbuy licenses to cover poorly estimated usages. Thus, mastering network function license through implementing Software Asset Management and FinOps (Finance and DevOps) is essential to control costs. In this research, our primary problem is to minimize the TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) of software cost (VNF), providing Quality of Services (QoS) to a specific amount of users. Software costs include various costs, from development to maintenance, integration to release management, and professional services. Our research focuses on proprietary software (developed by a publisher and sold via a paid license). We considered that TCO consists of the software license cost, the resources necessary to execute and operate SW, and the energy consumed by this execution. In this research, first, we have identified the need for a standardized VNF licensing model, which is highly dependent on the VNF provider's creativity; This lack of standards places CSPs (Communication Service Providers) at risk of having to delegate the management of rights to suppliers. Hence, we proposed a licensing model based on the metrics, which help to quantify the usage of the VNF. After estimating the license of VNF, we estimated the license cost. Afterward, we presented several ways to minimize the license cost depending upon the different use cases, which depend on the user's scenario and needs. Then after, with the help of industrial knowledge, we found that reducing resource consumption to minimize the TCO providing QoS affects the deployment of the VNF directly or indirectly, which impacts the licensing. Thus, the licenses and resources are interdependent. We used these costs to construct the software's total cost. After that, we proposed several ways to reduce the software's total cost by fulfilling the client's requirements. Then after, we considered the energy and its associated cost of VNF. The energy consumption of the VNF is dependent on resource consumption, and resources usages impact the license. Thus, we can see that these three costs are interdependent: license, resources, and energy cost of VNF. Hence, we consider these costs and constructed TCO. Minimizing TCO fulfilling the client's requirements is challenging since it is a multi-parameter. Therefore, we proposed several heuristical algorithms based on resource sharing and consolidation to reduce the TCO depending on the license, resource preference, and the client's scenarios

    Analysis of soft gelatin capsule with real-time polymerase chain reaction for halal autenthication

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    Halal medicine is an interesting topic to always discuss because it is a priority choice for Muslim consumers, one of which is halal capsules. Currently, molecular biology techniques such as real-time polymerase chain reactions are rapidly developing, including for the analysis of non-halal components based on DNA sequences. This study aimed to validate the quantitative PCR method for identifying DNA in gelatin-based products and to apply the confirmation method designed for capsule samples on the market circulating in Yogyakarta to prove the halalness of these samples. Validation of the porcine DNA detection analysis method on standard extraction of porcine gelatin using primer pairs obtained in previous studies. Validated methods are used for testing market capsule shells. The qPCR method using D-loop primers is specifically capable of amplifying porcine gelatin DNA up to a concentration of 0.5 pg/µL, with a CV value in the amplification response of porcine gelatin DNA isolates (1000 pg/µL) of 0.85% which meets the test criteria using the PCR. Three samples of commercial soft capsules tested gave a positive amplification response, meaning that the samples tested contained porcine DNA, and one negative sample, which probably had non-porcine gelatin. The application of this method is also very useful for ensuring the authenticity of the capsule shell, especially from cross-contamination and counterfeiting.

    Boundary Spanner Corruption in Business Relationships

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    Boundary spanner corruption—voluntary collaborative behaviour between individuals representing different organisations that violates their organisations’ norms—is a serious problem in business relationships. Drawing on insights from the literatures on general corruption perspectives, the dark side of business relationships and deviance in sales and service organisations, this dissertation identifies boundary spanner corruption as a potential dark side complication inherent in close business relationships It builds research questions from these literature streams and proposes a research structure based upon commonly used methods in corruption research to address this new concept. In the first study, using an exploratory survey of boundary spanner practitioners, the dissertation finds that the nature of boundary spanner corruption is broad and encompasses severe and non-severe types. The survey also finds that these deviance types are prevalent in a widespread of geographies and industries. This prevalence is particularly noticeable for less-severe corruption types, which may be an under-researched phenomenon in general corruption research. The consequences of boundary spanner corruption can be serious for both individuals and organisations. Indeed, even less-severe types can generate long-term negative consequences. A second interview-based study found that multi-level trust factors could also motivate the emergence of boundary spanner corruption. This was integrated into a theoretical model that illustrates how trust at the interpersonal, intraorganisational, and interorganisational levels enables corrupt behaviours by allowing deviance-inducing factors stemming from the task environment or from the individual boundary spanner to manifest in boundary spanner corruption. Interpersonal trust between representatives of different organisations, interorganisational trust between these organisations, and intraorganisational agency trust of management in their representatives foster the development of a boundary-spanning social cocoon—a mechanism that can inculcate deviant norms leading to corrupt behaviour. This conceptualisation and model of boundary spanner corruption highlights intriguing directions for future research to support practitioners engaged in a difficult problem in business relationships

    Industry 4.0 project prioritization by using q-spherical fuzzy rough analytic hierarchy process

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    The Fourth Industrial Revolution, also known as Industry 4.0, is attracting a significant amount of attention because it has the potential to revolutionize a variety of industries by developing a production system that is fully automated and digitally integrated. The implementation of this transformation, however, calls for a significant investment of resources and may present difficulties in the process of adapting existing technology to new endeavors. Researchers have proposed integrating the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) with extensions of fuzzy rough sets, such as the three-dimensional q-spherical fuzzy rough set (q-SFRS), which is effective in handling uncertainty and quantifying expert judgments, to prioritize projects related to Industry 4.0. This would allow the projects to be ranked in order of importance. In this article, a novel framework is presented that combines AHP with q-SFRS. To calculate aggregated values, the new framework uses a new formula called the q-spherical fuzzy rough arithmetic mean, when applied to a problem involving the selection of a project with five criteria for evaluation and four possible alternatives, the suggested framework produces results that are robust and competitive in comparison to those produced by other multi-criteria decision-making approaches

    Implications of the blockchain technology adoption by additive symbiotic networks

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    Funding Information: Funding: This work was supported by Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia, Lisboa, Portugal [Grant No SFRH/BD/145448/2019 and via the project UIDB/00667/2020 (UNIDEMI)]. Publisher Copyright: © 2023A vibrant debate has been initiated around the potential adoption of blockchain technology for enhancing the development of industrial symbiosis networks, particularly for promoting the creation of additive symbiotic networks. Despite the potential benefits of trust creation and elimination of intermediary entities, adopting such innovative technologies promises to disrupt the current supply chains of those symbiotic networks. The literature on these topics is still beginning; thus, the present research intends to contribute. A framework for understanding the implications of adopting the blockchain technology in the supply chain structure (specifically, in the dependency dimension) of an additive symbiotic network was developed, considering a network theory lens. The case study method was deemed to be suitable for carrying out this research. A case study related to an additive symbiotic network is described in detail, with the development of two scenarios: scenario I “as-is” for the current state of the network and scenario II “to-be” considering the adoption of the blockchain technology. Results show that adopting blockchain technology impacts the supply chain structure of additive symbiotic networks. More specifically, there are implications for the power distribution among the network's stakeholders.publishersversionpublishe

    Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer in a Supramolecular Assembly of Luminescent Silver Nanoclusters and a Cucurbit[8]uril-Based Host–Guest System

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    The understanding of interactions between organic chromophores and biocompatible luminescent noble metal nanoclusters (NCs) leading to an energy transfer process that has applications in light-harvesting materials is still in its nascent stage. This work describes a photoluminescent supramolecular assembly, made in two stages, employing an energy transfer process between silver (Ag) NCs as the donor and a host–guest system as the acceptor that can find potential applications in diverse fields. Initially, we explored the host–guest chemistry between a cationic guest ethidium bromide and cucurbit[8]uril host to modulate the fluorescence property of the acceptor. The host–guest interactions were characterized by using UV–vis absorption, steady-state and time-resolved spectroscopy, molecular docking, proton 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, and isothermal calorimetry studies. Next, we prepared a series of blue-emitting AgNCs using different templates such as proteins and peptides. We have found that these AgNCs can be employed as a donor in the energy transfer process upon mixing with the above acceptor for emission color tuning. Our in-depth studies also revealed that surface ligands could play a key role in modulating the energy transfer efficiency. Overall, by employing a noncovalent strategy, we have tried to develop Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) pairs using blue-emitting NCs and a host–guest complex that could find potential applications in constructing advanced sustainable light-harvesting, white light-emitting, and anti-counterfeiting materials

    A Non-Custodial Wallet for CBDC: Design Challenges and Opportunities

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    Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) is a novel form of money that could be issued and regulated by central banks, offering benefits such as programmability, security, and privacy. However, the design of a CBDC system presents numerous technical and social challenges. This paper presents the design and prototype of a non-custodial wallet, a device that enables users to store and spend CBDC in various contexts. To address the challenges of designing a CBDC system, we conducted a series of workshops with internal and external stakeholders, using methods such as storytelling, metaphors, and provotypes to communicate CBDC concepts, elicit user feedback and critique, and incorporate normative values into the technical design. We derived basic guidelines for designing CBDC systems that balance technical and social aspects, and reflect user needs and values. Our paper contributes to the CBDC discourse by demonstrating a practical example of how CBDC could be used in everyday life and by highlighting the importance of a user-centred approach.Comment: 25 pages, 12 figure
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