84 research outputs found


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    Consistency of functional characteristics in hard red spring (HRS) wheat is a concern confronting sellers and buyers. This research analyzes contract incentives for importers with respect to cost and potential risk of acceptance. A principal-agent framework is utilized to examine contract incentives. In the principal-agent contract, the principal offers the contract, the agent rejects or accepts the contract, and then decides how much effort to apply. All this is subject to risk for the agent and moral hazard for the principal. An example is presented, for which equilibrium contract terms are a base price of 454 cents per bushel for low quality wheat and a premium of 36 cents per bushel if high quality is achieved. The premium for high quality is unchanged as the agent's outside option increases, but increases as the probability of conformance with high effort declines or as the agent's cost of high effort increases. Small changes in several of the parameter values (agent's outside option, agent's cost of high/low effort, principal value for high/low effort, and principal's outside options if the contract was not extended or if the agent rejects the contract) result in the principal not offering a contract.Incentive Contact, Functional Characteristic, Wheat, Principal-Agent, Crop Production/Industries,


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    A number of challenges exist for genetically modified (GM) crop development at the production level. Contract strategies can resolve these challenges. Contracts can be designed to induce legal adoption of GM wheat by varying technology fees, violation detection, and penalties. The primary objective of this research is to analyze contracting strategies to determine terms to minimize technology agreement violation and to induce legal adoption of GM wheat. A simulation model of a crop budget for Hard Red Spring wheat was developed. Results illustrate that contracts can be designed to induce desired behavior. Technology fee, probability of detection, and the level of non-GM premium were the most notable factors influencing adoption decisions.Producer Decisions, Risk, Genetically Modified, Contract Terms, Wheat, Crop Production/Industries,

    The future of zoonotic risk prediction

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    In the light of the urgency raised by the COVID-19 pandemic, global investment in wildlife virology is likely to increase, and new surveillance programmes will identify hundreds of novel viruses that might someday pose a threat to humans. To support the extensive task of laboratory characterization, scientists may increasingly rely on data-driven rubrics or machine learning models that learn from known zoonoses to identify which animal pathogens could someday pose a threat to global health. We synthesize the findings of an interdisciplinary workshop on zoonotic risk technologies to answer the following questions. What are the prerequisites, in terms of open data, equity and interdisciplinary collaboration, to the development and application of those tools? What effect could the technology have on global health? Who would control that technology, who would have access to it and who would benefit from it? Would it improve pandemic prevention? Could it create new challenges? This article is part of the theme issue 'Infectious disease macroecology: parasite diversity and dynamics across the globe'.Peer reviewe

    Early-life predictors of resilience and related outcomes up to 66 years later in the 6-day sample of the 1947 Scottish mental survey.

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    PURPOSE: Psychological resilience, the ability to manage and quickly recover from stress and trauma, is associated with a range of health and wellbeing outcomes. Resilience is known to relate to personality, self-esteem and positive affect, and may also depend upon childhood experience and stress. In this study, we investigated the role of early-life contributors to resilience and related factors in later life. METHODS: We used data from the 6-day sample of the Scottish mental survey 1947, an initially representative sample of Scottish children born in 1936. They were assessed on a range of factors between the ages of 11 and 27 years, and resilience and other outcomes at 77 years. RESULTS: Higher adolescent dependability unexpectedly predicted lower resilience in older-age, as did childhood illnesses, while a count of specific stressors experienced throughout early life significantly predicted higher later-life resilience. We also observed significant cross-sectional correlations between resilience and measures of physical health, mental health, wellbeing and loneliness. Some of the associations between early-life predictors and later-life outcomes were significantly mediated by resilience. CONCLUSIONS: Our results support the hypothesis that stress throughout early life may help to build resilience in later-life, and demonstrate the importance of resilience as a mediator of other influences on health and wellbeing in older age. We suggest that the mechanisms determining how early-life stress leads to higher resilience are worthy of further investigation, and that psychological resilience should be a focus of research and a target for therapeutic interventions aiming to improve older-age health and wellbeing

    Childhood IQ and survival to 79: Follow-up of 94% of the Scottish Mental Survey 1947.

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    Objective To extend previous literature that suggests higher IQ in youth is associated with living longer. Previous studies have been unable to assess reliably whether the effect differs across sexes and ages of death, and whether the effect is graded across different levels of IQ. Methods We test IQ-survival associations in 94% of the near-entire population born in Scotland in 1936 who took an IQ test at age 11 (n = 70,805) and were traced in a 68-year follow-up. Results Higher IQ at age 11 years was associated with a lower risk of death (HR = 0.80, 95% CI = 0.79, 0.81). The decline in risk across categories of IQ scores was graded across the full range with the effect slightly stronger in women (HR = 0.79, 95% CI = 0.77, 0.80) than in men (HR = 0.82, 95% CI = 0.81, 0.84). Higher IQ had a significantly stronger association with death before and including age 65 (HR = 0.76, 95% CI = 0.74, 0.77) than in those participants who died at an older age (HR = 0.79, 95% CI = 0.78, 0.80). Conclusions Higher childhood IQ is associated with lower risk of all-cause mortality in both men and women. This is the only near-entire population study to date that examines the association between childhood IQ and mortality across most of the human life course

    Associations among height, body mass index and intelligence from age 11 to age 78 years

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    BACKGROUND: Intelligence is related to both height and body mass index (BMI) at various stages of life. Several studies have demonstrated longitudinal relationships between these measures, but none has established whether height and intelligence, or BMI and intelligence are linked from childhood through to older age. METHODS: We assessed the relations between these measures over an interval of up to 67 years using data from the 36-Day Sample, an initially-representative sample of Scottish people born in 1936, assessed at age 11 years (N = 6,291) and again at 77-78 years (N = 722). This paper focuses on the 423 participants (6.7 % of the original sample) who provided relevant data in late adulthood. RESULTS: Height and intelligence were significantly positively associated in childhood (β = .23) and late adulthood (β = .21-.29). Longitudinal correlations also showed that childhood intelligence predicted late-adulthood height (β = .20), and childhood height predicted late-adulthood cognitive ability (β = .12-.14). We observed no significant relationship between BMI and intelligence either in childhood or in late adulthood, nor any longitudinal association between the two in this sample. CONCLUSIONS: Our results on height and intelligence are the first to demonstrate that their relationship spans almost seven decades, from childhood through to late adulthood, and they call for further investigation into the mechanisms underlying this lifelong association