20,321 research outputs found

    Consent and the Construction of the Volunteer: Institutional Settings of Experimental Research on Human Beings in Britain during the Cold War

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    This study challenges the primacy of consent in the history of human experimentation and argues that privileging the cultural frameworks adds nuance to our understanding of the construction of the volunteer in the period 1945 to 1970. Historians and bio-ethicists have argued that medical ethics codes have marked out the parameters of using people as subjects in medical scientific research and that the consent of the subjects was fundamental to their status as volunteers. However, the temporality of the creation of medical ethics codes means that they need to be understood within their historical context. That medical ethics codes arose from a specific historical context rather than a concerted and conscious determination to safeguard the well-being of subjects needs to be acknowledged. The British context of human experimentation is under-researched and there has been even less focus on the cultural frameworks within which experiments took place. This study demonstrates, through a close analysis of the Medical Research Council's Common Cold Research Unit (CCRU) and the government's military research facility, the Chemical Defence Experimental Establishment, Porton Down (Porton), that the `volunteer' in human experiments was a subjective entity whose identity was specific to the institution which recruited and made use of the subject. By examining representations of volunteers in the British press, the rhetoric of the government's collectivist agenda becomes evident and this fed into the institutional construction of the volunteer at the CCRU. In contrast, discussions between Porton scientists, staff members, and government officials demonstrate that the use of military personnel in secret chemical warfare experiments was far more complex. Conflicting interests of the military, the government and the scientific imperative affected how the military volunteer was perceived

    Elite perceptions of the Victorian and Edwardian past in inter-war England

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    It is often argued by historians that members of the cultivated Elite after 1918 rejected the pre-war past. or at least subjected it to severe denigration. This thesis sets out to challenge such a view. Above all, it argues that inter-war critics of the Victorian and Edwardian past were unable to reject it even if that was what they felt inclined to do. This was because they were tied to those periods by the affective links of memory, family, and the continually unfolding consequences of the past in the present. Even the severest critics of the pre-war world, such as Lytton Strachey, were less frequently dismissive of history than ambivalent towards it. This ambivalence, it is argued, helped to keep the past alive and often to humanise it. The thesis also explores more positive estimation of Victorian and Edwardian history between the wars. It examines nostalgia for the past, as well as instances of continuity of practice and attitude. It explores the way in which inter-war society drew upon aspects of Victorian and Edwardian history both as illuminating parallels to contemporary affairs and to understand directly why the present was shaped as it was. Again, this testifies to the enduring power of the past after 1918. There are three parts to this thesis. Part One outlines the cultural context in which writers contemplated the Victorian and Edwardian past. Part Two explores some of the ways in which history was written about and used by inter-war society. Part Three examines the ways in which biographical depictions of eminent Victorians after 1918 encouraged emotional negotiation with the pas

    Sponsorship image and value creation in E-sports

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    .E-sports games can drive the sports industry forward and sponsorship is the best way to engage consumers of this new sport. The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of sponsorship image and consumer participation in co-creation consumption activities on fans’ sponsorship response (represented by the variables interest, purchase intention and word of mouth) in e-sports. Four antecedent variables build sponsorship image (i.e., ubiquity of sport, sincerity of sponsor, attitude to sponsor and team identification). A quantitative approach is used for the purposes of this study. Some 445 questionnaires were filled in by fans who watch e-sports in Spain; these are analyzed using partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM). The outcomes show that sponsor antecedents are crucial factors if a sponsor wants to change their sponsorship image and influence sponsorship response, and that it is also possible to use participation to improve responsesS

    Towards a sociology of conspiracy theories: An investigation into conspiratorial thinking on Dönmes

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    This thesis investigates the social and political significance of conspiracy theories, which has been an academically neglected topic despite its historical relevance. The academic literature focuses on the methodology, social significance and political impacts of these theories in a secluded manner and lacks empirical analyses. In response, this research provides a comprehensive theoretical framework for conspiracy theories by considering their methodology, political impacts and social significance in the light of empirical data. Theoretically, the thesis uses Adorno's semi-erudition theory along with Girardian approach. It proposes that conspiracy theories are methodologically semi-erudite narratives, i.e. they are biased in favour of a belief and use reason only to prove it. It suggests that conspiracy theories appear in times of power vacuum and provide semi-erudite cognitive maps that relieve alienation and ontological insecurities of people and groups. In so doing, they enforce social control over their audience due to their essentialist, closed-to-interpretation narratives. In order to verify the theory, the study analyses empirically the social and political significance of conspiracy theories about the Dönme community in Turkey. The analysis comprises interviews with conspiracy theorists, conspiracy theory readers and political parties, alongside a frame analysis of the popular conspiracy theory books on Dönmes. These confirm the theoretical framework by showing that the conspiracy theories are fed by the ontological insecurities of Turkish society. Hence, conspiracy theorists, most readers and some political parties respond to their own ontological insecurities and political frustrations through scapegoating Dönmes. Consequently, this work shows that conspiracy theories are important symptoms of society, which, while relieving ontological insecurities, do not provide politically prolific narratives

    The interpretation of Islam and nationalism by the elite through the English language media in Pakistan.

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    The media is constructed and interpreted through what people 'know'. That knowledge is, forthe most part, created through day to day experiences. In Pakistan, Islam and nationalism aretwo components of this social knowledge which are intrinsically tied to the experiences of thePakistani people. Censorship and selection are means through which this knowledge isarticulated and interpreted.General conceptions of partially shared large scale bodies of knowledge and ideas reinforce,and are reinforced by, general medium of mass communication: the print and electronic media.Focusing on the govermnent, media institutions and Pakistani elites, I describe and analyse thedifferent, sometimes conflicting, interpretations of Islam and Pakistani nationalism manifest inand through media productions presented in Pakistan.The media means many things, not least of which is power. It is the media as a source ofpower that is so frequently controlled, directed and manipulated. The terminology may beslightly different according to the context within which one is talking - propaganda, selection,etc. - but ultimately it comes down to the same thing - censorship. Each of the three groups:government, media institutions and Pakistani elites - have the power to interpret and censormedia content and consideration must be taken of each of the other power holders consequentlyrestricting the power of each group in relation to the other two. The processes of thismanipulation and their consequences form the major themes of this thesis

    Predicting limit-setting behavior of gamblers using machine learning algorithms: a real-world study of Norwegian gamblers using account data

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    Player protection and harm minimization have become increasingly important in the gambling industry along with the promotion of responsible gambling (RG). Among the most widespread RG tools that gaming operators provide are limit-setting tools that help players limit the amount of time and/or money they spend gambling. Research suggests that limit-setting significantly reduces the amount of money that players spend. If limit-setting is to be encouraged as a way of facilitating responsible gambling, it is important to know what variables are important in getting individuals to set and change limits in the first place. In the present study, 33 variables assessing the player behavior among Norsk Tipping clientele (N = 70,789) from January to March 2017 were computed. The 33 variables which reflect the players’ behavior were then used to predict the likelihood of gamblers changing their monetary limit between April and June 2017. The 70,789 players were randomly split into a training dataset of 56,532 and an evaluation set of 14,157 players (corresponding to an 80/20 split). The results demonstrated that it is possible to predict future limit-setting based on player behavior. The random forest algorithm appeared to predict limit-changing behavior much better than the other algorithms. However, on the independent test data, the random forest algorithm’s accuracy dropped significantly. The best performance on the test data along with a small decrease in accuracy in comparison to the training data was delivered by the gradient boost machine learning algorithm. The most important variables predicting future limit-setting using the gradient boost machine algorithm were players receiving feedback that they had reached 80% of their personal monthly global loss limit, personal monthly loss limit, the amount bet, theoretical loss, and whether the players had increased their limits in the past. With the help of predictive analytics, players with a high likelihood of changing their limits can be proactively approached

    NFT-Related Companies: Token Sale Returns

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    Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have emerged as a new means of digital asset ownership and many companies are building projects that revolve around the technology. These companies are blockchain-based and raise capital for their projects through cryptocurrency token sales, which have become a new mechanism of entrepreneurial finance. In a sample of 62 NFT-related companies, I examine which company, fundraising, and token sale process characteristics are associated with the performance of 7-day and 60-day market returns after a token’s public listing. A multivariate regression analysis finds that the total amount of capital raised before a token launch has a negative relationship with the 7-day and 60-day market returns. Ethereum returns, the length of the team token lock-up period and the presence of a vesting schedule have positive relationships with 60-day token returns

    Transportation Planning, Policy, and Electric Micro-Mobilities: A Knowledge Synthesis of Recent Publications

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    This SSHRC-funded (Grant #972-2020-1009) scoping review synthesizes existing research (2010-2021) related to both private and shared electric micro-mobilities (i.e. e-bikes, e-scooters, e-unicycles, e-skateboards). It considers themes such as: rider demographics, usage, and motivations; mobility justice; benefits of and barriers to EMM use; safety and injuries; modal shift among forms of transportation; rider satisfaction with mode choice; environmental impact; conflict and controversy; EMM pilot programs; and EMM integration, legislation, and policy recommendations. Aside from scholarship, media reports are also included, in order to speak to the environment in which the research takes place

    Walking with the Earth: Intercultural Perspectives on Ethics of Ecological Caring

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    It is commonly believed that considering nature different from us, human beings (qua rational, cultural, religious and social actors), is detrimental to our engagement for the preservation of nature. An obvious example is animal rights, a deep concern for all living beings, including non-human living creatures, which is understandable only if we approach nature, without fearing it, as something which should remain outside of our true home. “Walking with the earth” aims at questioning any similar preconceptions in the wide sense, including allegoric-poetic contributions. We invited 14 authors from 4 continents to express all sorts of ways of saying why caring is so important, why togetherness, being-with each others, as a spiritual but also embodied ethics is important in a divided world

    How to Be a God

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    When it comes to questions concerning the nature of Reality, Philosophers and Theologians have the answers. Philosophers have the answers that can’t be proven right. Theologians have the answers that can’t be proven wrong. Today’s designers of Massively-Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games create realities for a living. They can’t spend centuries mulling over the issues: they have to face them head-on. Their practical experiences can indicate which theoretical proposals actually work in practice. That’s today’s designers. Tomorrow’s will have a whole new set of questions to answer. The designers of virtual worlds are the literal gods of those realities. Suppose Artificial Intelligence comes through and allows us to create non-player characters as smart as us. What are our responsibilities as gods? How should we, as gods, conduct ourselves? How should we be gods
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