Now showing items 1-20 of 6573

    • Introducing forced migration

      Hynes, Patricia (Routledge, 2021-03-31)
      At a time when global debates about the movement of people have never been more heated, this book provides readers with an accessible, student-friendly guide to the subject of forced migration. Readers of this book will learn who forced migrants are, where they are and why international protection is critical in a world of increasingly restrictive legislation and policy. The book outlines key definitions, ideas, concepts, points for discussion, theories and case studies of the various forms of forced migration. In addition to this technical grounding, the book also signposts further reading and provides handy Key Thinker boxes to summarise the work of the field’s most influential academics. Drawing on decades of experience both in the classroom and in the field, this book invites readers to question how labels and definitions are used in legal, policy and practice responses, and to engage in a richer understanding of the lives and realities of forced migrants on the ground. Perfect for undergraduate and postgraduate teaching in courses related to migration and diaspora studies, Introducing Forced Migration will also be valuable to policy-makers, practitioners, journalists, volunteers and aid workers working with refugees, the internally displaced and those who have experienced trafficking.
    • Action to end child sexual abuse and exploitation: a review of the evidence

      Radford, Lorraine; Allnock, Debra; Hynes, Patricia; Shorrock, Sarah; UNICEF and End Violence Against Children; University of Central Lancashire; University of Bedfordshire (UNICEF and End Violence Against Children, 2020-12-01)
      Child sexual abuse and exploitation is prevalent in all countries of the world and has a significant impact on the health and wellbeing of children and adolescents. This report commissioned by UNICEF: * describes what is known about the extent, nature and consequences of child sexual abuse and exploitation; * reviews the evidence on effective interventions and strategies to prevent and respond; * synthesises these findings within the overarching INSPIRE and RESPECT strategic approach for violence prevention to recommend specific actions to prevent and respond to child sexual abuse and exploitation.
    • Fuzzy modelling of fuel consumptions and emissions for optimal navigation of a BOEING-747 aircraft

      Obajemu, Olusayo; Mahfouf, Mahdi; Maiyar, Lohithaksha M.; He, Changjiang; Allerton, David J.A.; Chen, Jun; Weiszer, Michal; University of Sheffield; Queen Mary University of London (IEEE Computer Society, 2020-08-21)
      Air traffic at many airports around the world is expected to grow, more often than not and at near capacity. Investing in new infrastructure is an option albeit relatively long-term but making a better use of existing facilities is an even better short and mid-term solution. Although Aircraft ground movement represents only a fraction of overall operations, optimal airport taxiing in terms of fuel burn and CO emission can contribute significantly to running costs and environment impact. Hence, with the view of optimising ground movement at busy airports, this research paper investigates a new framework for utilising model predictions to optimise the planning of taxiing operations of a BOEING-747 Aircraft. Research studies relating to how fuel consumption and emissions models (such as Carbon monoxide oxides of Nitrogen) are carried out. Specifically, the use of fuzzy-logic based models via quantitative data for the successful prediction of fuel consumption and CO emissions is explored in the paper. The fuzzy models are accurate, transparent but most importantly are capable of dealing with uncertainties, normally present in the system, intrinsically. These models and analyses will be integrated into a future study involving the development of optimal taxiing and navigation algorithms and to which the development of accurate models of aircraft fuel consumptions and emissions is crucial.
    • Real-time four-dimensional trajectory generation based on gain-scheduling control and a high-fidelity aircraft model

      Obajemu, Olusayo; Mahfouf, Mahdi; Maiyar, Lohithaksha M.; Al-Hindi, Abrar; Weiszer, Michal; Chen, Jun; University of Sheffield; University of Bedfordshire; Queen Mary University of London (Elsevier Ltd, 2021-03-19)
      Aircraft ground movement plays a key role in improving airport efficiency, as it acts as a link to all other ground operations. Finding novel approaches to coordinate the movements of a fleet of aircraft at an airport in order to improve system resilience to disruptions with increasing autonomy is at the center of many key studies for airport airside operations. Moreover, autonomous taxiing is envisioned as a key component in future digitalized airports. However, state-of-the-art routing and scheduling algorithms for airport ground movements do not consider high-fidelity aircraft models at both the proactive and reactive planning phases. The majority of such algorithms do not actively seek to optimize fuel efficiency and reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions. This paper proposes a new approach for generating efficient four-dimensional trajectories (4DTs) on the basis of a high-fidelity aircraft model and gain-scheduling control strategy. Working in conjunction with a routing and scheduling algorithm that determines the taxi route, waypoints, and time deadlines, the proposed approach generates fuel-efficient 4DTs in real time, while respecting operational constraints. The proposed approach can be used in two contexts: ① as a reactive decision support tool to generate new trajectories that can resolve unprecedented events; and ② as an autopilot system for both partial and fully autonomous taxiing. The proposed methodology is realistic and simple to implement. Moreover, simulation studies show that the proposed approach is capable of providing an up to 11% reduction in the fuel consumed during the taxiing of a large Boeing 747-100 jumbo jet.
    • Interference system for high pressure environment

      Kumpulainen, Tero; Singh, Amandeep; März, Thomas; Dong, Litong; Li, Dayou; Reuna, Jarno; Vihinen, Jorma; Levänen, Erkki; Tampere University; InnoLas Laser GmbH; et al. (Elsevier Ltd, 2021-05-29)
      Laser interference patterning or lithography has been used in variety of the applications using, patterning, masking and processing structures at top of material. It offers fast processing over as large areas can be processed simultaneously. Additionally, fine patterns are possible to achieve both in micro and sub-micro scale. In this manuscript is presented novel concept to combine interference patterning and high-pressure processing environment. With aid of high-pressure system, it is possible to control processing environment and add co-solvents in desired state (liquid, gas, supercritical) and use developed system as controlled reactive environment in the future studies. Two systems were developed and assembled for testing and proofing the concept. The results of the two 4-beam interference systems (lens- and mirror-based) are presented and compared.
    • Information sharing and business analytics in global supply chains

      Ramanathan, Usha; Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan; Nottingham Trent University; University of Bedfordshire (Elsevier, 2021-05-17)
      The importance of collaboration in business and transparent information exchange among supply chain partners, have been topics of discussion for several years. Global businesses such as Walmart and P&G have focused on collaborative relationships with downstream partners (buyers) and upstream partners (suppliers) to meet customers’ demands. While supply chain collaborations support transparent information exchange, business analytics is proving to be the source of generating business intelligence to all supply chain partners for production planning, logistics, and distribution in this digital era. This chapter highlights the fact that businesses with transparent inventory and demand information could realize cost reductions and improve service levels using sensible business analytics. However, creating a platform to share the information and developing trustworthy partnerships are paramount. Our study discusses a few examples from current businesses to bring out the importance of collaboration by (1) sharing information with all supply chains partners and (2) moving from traditional ordering to an automated system with the support of business analytics and supply chain collaboration.
    • Interpreting banks’ sustainability initiatives as reputational ‎risk management and mechanisms for coping, re-‎embedding and rebuilding soceital trust ‎

      Saeudy, Mohamed; Atkins, J.; Barone, E,; University of Bedfordshire (Emerald Publishing, 2021-06-09)
      The financial crisis and increasing concerns around climate change and global warming have combined to shatter societal trust in the banking sector worldwide. Consequently, there is an urgent need for banks to rebuild trust among their stakeholders and enhance their reputations. This paper contributes to a growing literature in sustainable and green banking by exploring the views of senior banking representatives towards the implementation of sustainability initiatives through extensive interview research. We explore the extent to which such initiatives are embedded within the banking industry, whether they represent risk management mechanisms and whether they are imbued with reputational risk management rather than a genuine response to ethical societal concerns. The interviewees’ utterances are interpreted through a sociological theoretical lens derived from the work of Giddens and Beck, allowing us to conclude that external initiatives such as the Equator Principles seem to be adopted as re-embedding mechanisms that can rebuild societal trust, as well as representing mechanisms of reputational risk management. Further, the analysis suggested that internal sustainability initiatives were interpreted as coping mechanisms whereby bank employees can recreate their protective cocoon, reinstating their ontological security in response to the high consequence risks of climate change and other related systemic factors that create overwhelming feelings of engulfment.
    • Changing sedentary behaviour in the workplace

      Brierley, Marsha Lynn (University of BedfordshireUniversity of Bedfordshire, 2020-06)
      Sedentary behaviour is independently related to the development of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and their risk markers. The office workplace is a major contributor to daily sedentary behaviour (sitting); however, it also offers the opportunity to intervene with a large population. Desk-based police staff make up at least a third of UK police employees and experience poorer cardiometabolic health profiles than higher ranked police employees. The purpose of this thesis was to develop and assess the feasibility of delivering a tailored intervention to reduce prolonged sitting in police staff. The first aim of the thesis was to determine the effects of sedentary workplace interventions on cardiometabolic risk markers and ascertain the ‘active ingredients’ in promising studies (Study 1). The second aim was to gather qualitative insights into the acceptability of a theory-based workplace intervention using the APEASE framework (Study 2). The third aim was to interview police staff to understand their barriers and facilitators for reducing sedentary time (Study 3). The fourth aim was to assess the feasibility of conducting a multi-component intervention in police staff (Study 4). The systematic review (Study 1, Chapter 4) found that interventions show promise for improving cardiometabolic health. However, individual studies were at risk of allocation and performance bias. The behaviour change techniques of social comparison, problem solving, demonstration of the behaviour, goal setting, behaviour substitution, and habit reversal were frequently observed in promising interventions. In Study 2 (Chapter 5), a theory-derived sedentary behaviour office worker intervention comprising individual, organisational/social, and environmental modifications was acceptable and practicable. Productivity concerns and cost (of sit-stand desks) were barriers to organisational buy-in. Preference and work tasks influenced engagement with intervention resources. Police staff would benefit from a low cost intervention targeting social influences, education/skills training, and habit reinforcement (Study 3, Chapter 6). In Study 4 (Chapter 8), a tailored intervention was found to be feasible and acceptable for reducing prolonged sitting in police staff. This thesis provides a ‘roadmap’ for the development of interventions using the Behaviour Change Wheel. Findings from the feasibility trial identified key indicators of successful implementation regarding participant recruitment and retention, which should be considered should the intervention go to a full trial. Future research should investigate the long term behavioural and health effects of this intervention in police staff and other office-based occupations with the aim of improving public health.
    • Effects of a competitive soccer match on jump performance and interlimb asymmetries in elite academy soccer players

      Bromley, Tom; Turner, Anthony; Read, Paul; Lake, Jason; Maloney, Sean J.; Chavda, Shyam; Bishop, Chris (Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins, 2021-06-01)
      The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of a competitive soccer match on jump performance and interlimb asymmetries over incremental time points during a 72-hour period. Fourteen elite adolescent players from a professional English category 3 academy performed single-leg countermovement jumps pre, post, 24-, 48-, and 72-hour post-match on a single force platform. Eccentric impulse, concentric impulse, peak propulsive force, jump height, peak landing force, and landing impulse were monitored throughout. Interlimb asymmetries were also calculated for each metric as the percentage difference between limbs. Significant negative changes (p < 0.05) in jump performance were noted for all metrics at all time points, with the exception of jump height. Interlimb asymmetries were metric-dependent and showed very large increases, specifically post-match, with a trend to reduce back toward baseline values at the 48-hour time point for propulsive-based metrics. Asymmetries for landing metrics did not peak until the 24-hour time point and again reduced toward baseline at 48-hour time point. This study highlights the importance of monitoring distinct jump metrics, as jump height alone was not sensitive enough to show significant changes in jump performance. However, interlimb asymmetries were sensitive to fatigue with very large increases post-match. More frequent monitoring of asymmetries could enable practitioners to determine whether existing imbalances are also associated with reductions in physical performance or increased injury risk.
    • Aiming off the target: recycling target capture sequencing reads for investigating repetitive DNA

      Costa, Lucas; Marques, André; Buddenhagen, Chris; Thomas, William Wayt; Huettel, Bruno; Schubert, Veit; Dodsworth, Steven; Houben, Andreas; Souza, Gustavo; Pedrosa-Harand, Andrea (Oxford University Press, 2021-05-29)
      With the advance of high-throughput sequencing (HTS), reduced-representation methods such as target capture sequencing (TCS) emerged as cost-efficient ways of gathering genomic information, particularly from coding regions. As the off-target reads from such sequencing are expected to be similar to genome skimming (GS), we assessed the quality of repeat characterization in plant genomes using this data. Repeat composition obtained from TCS datasets of five Rhynchospora (Cyperaceae) species were compared with GS data from the same taxa. In addition, a FISH probe was designed based on the most abundant satellite found in the TCS dataset of Rhynchospora cephalotes. Finally, repeat-based phylogenies of the five Rhynchospora species were constructed based on the GS and TCS dataset and the topologies were compared with a gene-alignment based phylogenetic tree. All the major repetitive DNA families were identified in TCS, including repeats that showed abundances as low as 0.01% in the GS data. Rank correlation between GS and TCS repeat abundances were moderately high (r = 0.58-0.85), increasing after filtering out the targeted loci from the raw TCS reads (r = 0.66-0.92). Repeat data obtained by TCS was also reliable to develop a cytogenetic probe of a new variant of the holocentromeric satellite Tyba. Repeat-based phylogenies from TCS data were congruent with those obtained from GS data and the gene-alignment tree. Our results show that off-target TCS reads can be recycled to identify repeats for cyto- and phylogenomic investigations. Given the growing availability of TCS reads, driven by global phylogenomic projects, our strategy represents a way to recycle genomic data and contribute to a better characterization of plant biodiversity.
    • Understanding failings in patient safety: lessons from the case of surgeon Ian Paterson

      Milligan, Frank; University of Bedfordshire (RCN Publishing, 2021-06-01)
      While rare, incidents of inappropriate and/or unnecessary surgery do occur, so effective surveillance of surgical practice is required to ensure patient safety. This article explores the case of Ian Paterson, a consultant surgeon who was sentenced to 20 years in prison in 2017 for wounding with intent and unlawful wounding, primarily by undertaking inappropriate or unnecessary mastectomies. The article details the main points of the Paterson case, with reference to the subsequent government-commissioned inquiry and its recommendations. It also outlines various strategies for enhancing patient safety, including applying human factors theory, improving auditing, and rationalising NHS and private healthcare. The author concludes that nurses have a crucial role in the surveillance of surgical practice and that combined reporting of surgeons' practice across NHS and private healthcare organisations is required.
    • Comparative analysis of scheduling algorithms for radio resource allocation in future communication networks

      Ashfaq, Khuram; Safdar, Ghazanfar Ali; Ur-Rehman, Masood; ; University of Bedfordshire; University of Glasgow (PeerJ, 2021-05-18)
      Wireless links are fast becoming the key communication mode. However, as compared to the wired link, their characteristics make the traffic prone to time- and location-dependent signal attenuation, noise, fading, and interference that result in time varying channel capacities and link error rate. Scheduling algorithms play an important role in wireless links to guarantee quality of service (QoS) parameters such as throughput, delay, jitter, fairness and packet loss rate. The scheduler has vital importance in current as well as future cellular communications since it assigns resource block (RB) to different users for transmission. Scheduling algorithm makes a decision based on the information of link state, number of sessions, reserved rates and status of the session queues. The information required by a scheduler implemented in the base station can easily be collected from the downlink transmission. This paper reflects on the importance of schedulers for future wireless communications taking LTE-A networks as a case study. It compares the performance of four well-known scheduling algorithms including round robin (RR), best channel quality indicator (BCQI), proportional fair (PF), and fractional frequency reuse (FFR). The performance of these four algorithms is evaluated in terms of throughput, fairness index, spectral efficiency and overall effectiveness. System level simulations have been performed using a MATLAB based LTE-A Vienna downlink simulator. The results show that the FFR scheduler is the best performer among the four tested algorithms. It also exhibits flexibility and adaptability for radio resource assignment.
    • Resolving species boundaries in a recent radiation with the Angiosperms353 probe set: the Lomatium packardiae/L. anomalum clade of the L. triternatum (Apiaceae) complex

      Ottenlips, Michael V.; Mansfield, Donald H.; Buerki, Sven; Feist, Mary Ann E.; Downie, Stephen R.; Dodsworth, Steven; Forest, Felix; Plunkett, Gregory M.; Smith, James F.; Boise State University; et al. (Wiley, 2021-06-08)
      Speciation not associated with morphological shifts is challenging to detect unless molecular data are employed. Using Sanger-sequencing approaches, the Lomatium packardiae/L. anomalum subcomplex within the larger Lomatium triternatum complex could not be resolved. Therefore, we attempt to resolve these boundaries here. The Angiosperms353 probe set was employed to resolve the ambiguity within Lomatium triternatum species complex using 48 accessions assigned to L. packardiae, L. anomalum, or L. triternatum. In addition to exon data, 54 nuclear introns were extracted and were complete for all samples. Three approaches were used to estimate evolutionary relationships and define species boundaries: STACEY, a Bayesian coalescent-based species tree analysis that takes incomplete lineage sorting into account; ASTRAL-III, another coalescent-based species tree analysis; and a concatenated approach using MrBayes. Climatic factors, morphological characters, and soil variables were measured and analyzed to provide additional support for recovered groups. The STACEY analysis recovered three major clades and seven subclades, all of which are geographically structured, and some correspond to previously named taxa. No other analysis had full agreement between recovered clades and other parameters. Climatic niche and leaflet width and length provide some predictive ability for the major clades. The results suggest that these groups are in the process of incipient speciation and incomplete lineage sorting has been a major barrier to resolving boundaries within this lineage previously. These results are hypothesized through sequencing of multiple loci and analyzing data using coalescent-based processes.
    • The design of an innovative automatic computational method for generating geometric Islamic visual art with aesthetic beauty

      Ibrahim, Marwah Mohammed (University of BedfordshireUniversity of Bedfordshire, 2021)
      The demands for providing perfect and modern Islamic art patterns have increased, and Arab nations are unable to utilise Islamic art on the computer due to a lack of programs based on generating these patterns. Several studies address the topic of Islamic art from Arab regions and lack endeavoured to integrate computer software to develop or enhance Islamic art designs. With this gap in software to enhance and generate Islamic art, the Geometric Islamic Visual Art program (GIVA) package can support the development of innovative and automated algorithms for generating geometric Islamic patterns based upon pre-defined rules that guarantee the quality and involves key aesthetics metrics. Concurrently, the ‘Triangulation’ Mixed Methods Design is adapted by first developing a mathematical formula to generate Islamic art, determine a quantitative approach for a procedure of cross-sectional design, and follow a qualitative approach through semi-structured interviews. The software program development is based on a pre-existing mathematical algorithm and adjusted to create the Islamic art pattern of a star. The quantitative approach incorporated convenience sampling from 250 recruited Saudi adults categorised into groups of 50 from five locations. The response rate achieved for this study was 80%. The study adopts a pre-existing questionnaire from a previous study addressing the computerisation of Islamic art. A correlation is identified between previous use of graphical computer programs by the participants to create Islamic art and their intentions to use the new GIVA software. For the qualitative phase, nine experts from the College of Art, Design of King Abdul-Aziz University and Nawaf Company General Contracting were interviewed. They provided an evaluation of the patterns on several aesthetic themes including spaces between patterns, distances and sizes, colour grading, shape diversity, uniqueness, and complexity. The series of eight themes were obtained from qualitative data analysis using thematic analysis, by using Nvivo version 12 user requirements; spatial distance (in design), the eight themes are: distance and size; colour grading; shape diversity; uniqueness of pattern; complexity of pattern; and participant evaluation. With this quantitative and qualitative feedback, computerised generation of the perfect pattern is possible. This study can inform the Ministry of Culture, support the faculty of art and design throughout Saudi Arabia who work on the development of Islamic art using software and further enhance the Islamic art field to make it more popular. The study also suggests a variety of future studies including the use of an alternate formula to produce various Islamic art faster.
    • Use of machine learning to reduce false alarms

      Ali, Muhammed Usman (University of Bedfordshire, 2020)
      Machine learning is adopted widely in many sectors including healthcare, automotive and finance where machine learning use cases include disease detection, predictive maintenance, and fraud detection. During 2017/2018, around 40%(226,000) of the incidents attended by fire and rescue service were false alarms. Therefore, this thesis is focused towards the application of machine learning on fire alarm systems data to address the rising problem of false alarms. The fire alarm system on site gathers the data about different events which can be utilised to conduct the experiments with machine learning. Therefore , to address this problem five different classification machine learning models including Logistic Regression, Support Vector Machines, Naïve Bayes Classifier, Decision Trees and Random Forests have been used to experiment with data gathered from fire alarm system. The performance of the different machine learning models is evaluated using different methods such as precision, recall, f1- score, confusion matrix, k-fold cross validation and mean accuracy to find the best suited models for reducing false alarm rates. Experiments were conducted on data gathered from the fire alarm system, 10-fold cross validation results indicated Naïve Bayes Classifier detecting 51 out of 53 Fires correctly but with a high misclassification rate and low mean accuracy of 61%. The remaining four models failed in classifying any fires correctly with 0.00 recall, still achieving overall accuracy in the range of 97-98% due to high imbalance in the dataset. The Cohen Kappa value of 0.0 was achieved by models indicating poor agreement in the decisions made. Machine learning models exhibited better performance on the new test data with incorporated temperature data, models achieved higher recall in the range of 0.70 to 1.00 during 10-fold cross validation as well as higher Cohen Kappa scores in the range 0.73 to 0.88 indicating substantial agreement in the decisions made by the machine learning models. The results on fire system data indicated machine may not be that effective due to poor correlation between the features in the data and high imbalance in the data. However, much better results are achieved by incorporating some additional sensors such as temperature into the fire alarm system data.
    • The relationship between attention and consciousness: evidence for phenomenal overflow

      Baldwin, Michael (University of BedfordshireUniversity of Bedfordshire, 2020-03)
      There is an ongoing debate in the study of consciousness regarding the relationship between consciousness and attention. While it is widely accepted that attention and consciousness are two distinct processes, the debate is over the nature of the relationship, does consciousness overflow attention? Four experiments were carried out to investigate the relationship between consciousness and attention, using a modification of the visual search paradigm, searching for a target in a display of non-targets and pressing a key to indicate whether the target was present or not present. The same Methodology was used in all for experiments with eye tracking, to monitor the direction of the gaze. A gaze contingent display was used to disrupt the allocation of attention under two of the experimental conditions. Participants were instructed to search for a given target under three conditions, Constant, Variable and Moveable. In the Constant condition, the target remained when a fixation was made. In the Variable condition, the target changed to a non-target just prior to fixation, changing back to the target when the gaze moved away. In the third, Moveable condition, the target moved to another part of the display when an attempt was made at fixation, with further relocations on subsequent attempts at fixation. It was hypothesised that under the Variable and Moveable conditions increased levels of cognitive engagement as measured by fixation and fixation durations would indicate awareness of the target while still resulting in a failure to report. Study One, involved a feature search, searching for a target that differed from the background by colour, looking for a light red block in a display of dark red blocks. Participants failed to report the presence of the target on around 50% of the trials. The results suggested that participants were making more effort to determine that the target was not present than correctly reporting the presence of the target. Study Two involved s second feature search for orientation. The target was an angled bar in a display of vertical bars. Findings were consistent with Study One, failure to report occurring on around 50% of the trials. Again, failure to report was accompanied by more fixations on the target than correct report, indicating that participants were aware of the target, but were unable to focus attention. Study Three involved a search for higher order properties in terms of shape or form. In this case, looking for an oval in a display of circles. The findings supported those of the first two studies. Failure to report on around 50% of the trials, with a failure to report being accompanied by more fixations of the target than correct report Study four employed a conjunction search, looking for a green circle in a display of yellow circles and green squares. While there were less failures to report than the previous studies, overall findings were the same. Participants were fixating on the target more times before deciding it was not there than correct report. Overall, the findings from all four experiments were broadly similar. Increased levels of engagement in the Variable and Moveable conditions than the Constant condition, for both correct and incorrect report. Further, incorrect report was associated with higher levels of engagement than correct report. This was interpreted as evidence that awareness can occur outside of focal attention, supporting the consciousness first position. Further, that a failure to report does not necessarily been a lack of awareness. This interpretation is open to possible alternative explanations, which are discussed.
    • Nanoparticles based drug delivery platform to improve oral uptake for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease

      Kaur, Gurpreet (University of Bedfordshire, 2020)
      Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a rapidly progressive chronic neurodegenerative disease, which eventually leads to brain damage. Despite combined efforts of the research community, no fully effective treatment has been identified yet. Drug delivery is a major issue in neurodegenerative diseases due to the complexity of the diseases but the difficulty in accessing targets. A medicine is only effective if it reaches its target. As such, while some active molecules can be demonstrated very efficiently in vitro, side effects and unreachable targets bring delivery at the forefront of drug efficiency. Rivastigmine is one of the reversible Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) Inhibitors, which is used for the treatment of mild to moderate dementia of either AD or Parkinson’s disease (PD). As a cholinesterase inhibitor, its role is to inhibit AChE activity to maintain ACh level by decreasing its breakdown rate, therefore boosting cholinergic neurotransmission in forebrain regions and compensate for the loss of functioning brain cells Rivastigmine has shown some success in improving ACh level in AD patients and also inhibiting amyloid plaques deposition in the brain. It is commercially available in different forms including oral solutions, tablets, and patches but therapeutic regimens require frequent dosing causing fluctuations is the plasma level. Whereas the oral form has been associated with a high incidence of gastrointestinal side effects, the transdermal patch formulation has been shown to have a better tolerability profile but adverse dermatologic reactions remain a concern. In addition, an important safety concern persists with dermal application with the risk of treatment overdose by administering multiple patches at the same time, potentially leading to fatal outcomes. Therefore, the oral form could be safer if its side effects could be controlled. Following initial uptake, crossing the blood-­‐brain barrier (BBB) is another major obstacle to be considered. Due to its hydrophilic nature, rivastigmine efficacy is also restricted by its poor ability to cross BBB. Its bioavailability is reported to be only up to 35%. To overcome these issues, this work has focused on the delivery of rivastigmine, particularly its uptake with nanoparticle-­‐based formulations that can facilitate uptake, protect the active molecule from early degradation, and provide targeted delivery while preventing side effects due to unwanted interactions. Rivastigmine loaded nanoparticles have previously been designed and proven to have numerous fundamental properties that assist their effectiveness such as biocompatibility, lack of toxicity, reduced side effects, and increased tolerated dose of the drug but not effective enough for the treatment. Their enhanced retention time within the systemic circulation and their ability to cross BBB still remains challenging. The novel formulations designed in this study were designed for slow release to prevent cytotoxicity while providing stability and high uptake in GI tract to reach the systemic circulation. Biodegradable composition of these formulations will prevent the risks that may contribute to accumulation of inorganic material inside the brain. As the aim of the research is the successful targeted delivery of Rivastigmine, the first objective of this study was to design an efficient method to monitor and analyse delivery, using UPLC in an analytical set up standardised using in house developed standard solutions. In the second part of this study, several formulations were designed and investigated to improve rivastigmine intestinal uptake, where both negatively and positively charges drug loaded nanoparticles were formulated. In the third part of this work ,a Caco-­‐2 cell duodenal model was used to assess membrane permeability, uptake, and intake of Rivastigmine. Cytotoxicity of nanoformulations was determined by MTT assay showing low toxicity in the case of rivastigmine-­‐loaded nanoparticles. The final results of this study demonstrate that nanoparticle formulations provide a slower stable release of rivastigmine from nanoparticles than previously designed nanoformulations. I addition, some of these formulations provide high bioavailability over both apical and basal membrane, therefore, providing higher intake to target the BBB, with limited unwanted interaction in the intestine therefore limiting the major concern about side effects
    • Exploring mental health nurses’ experiences of a patient suicide in the community

      Makaza, Melsina (University of BedfordshireUniversity of Bedfordshire, 2021-05)
      The aim of this study was to explore the experiences of mental health nurses after a patient dies by suicide in a community setting within the context of UK mental health services. It utilised the principles of Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) to explore the experiences of ten community mental health nurses who had experienced a patient suicide between 2002 and 2018. The study was divided into two main types of fieldwork, a pilot study and a main study. Using IPA, the ten interviews were analysed descriptively, conceptually and linguistically, which produced rich narratives reflecting their lived experience of patient suicide. Findings from this study produced three superordinate themes which capture mental health nurses’ experiences after a patient suicide: The experiential significance of a therapeutic relationship ending unexpectedly for the mental health nurse; searching for meaning of the patient suicide in the face of public scrutiny; and, after the suicide, the experience of intense grieving, learning, growing and moving on. Their stories revealed that the experience of suicide-loss survivorship as a community mental health nurse creates conflict as well as ongoing tensions between existentialism and personal ontologies. The implications of the findings suggest that although the memory of the patient who has died by suicide never leaves their psychological caseload, the community mental health nurse can be secure in knowing that they fully lived up to their part in the therapeutic nurse-patient relationship.
    • Survivors coping with a history of child sexual abuse in South Africa

      Karagianni, Andriana (University of Bedfordshire, 2021-03)
      Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) is global problem that is found in all societies and cultures. Although there is research exploring CSA in western countries, the literature shows that there is limited CSA research on developing countries, like South Africa which is the focus of this thesis. Incidence and prevalence rates are substantially higher in South Africa when compared to other countries and for that reason, further research is needed for the context of that region. The literature shows that ‘coping’ from CSA plays a significant role in survivors’ lives but it is an area that has not been explored sufficiently in South Africa. To this end, the subject of this thesis is to explore ‘coping’ from CSA in South Africa and to explore ways in which CSA survivors cope with their experiences of abuse. This has been achieved through outlining the existing research on CSA coping in the region with the aim to identify studies that are related with topic; to understand the main learnings for that specific population; and to compare these findings to the strategies of other western countries. The study identifies a number of coping strategies that have been adopted by CSA survivors in South Africa to cope with the abuse. It is also shown that similar strategies have been used by CSA survivors in western countries. The link between coping strategies in the area and the specific cultural characteristics is discussed as well. This thesis makes knowledge around coping strategies in South Africa available, and identifies areas for further research.
    • A study of the prevention of child sexual exploitation and the exploration of social workers’ perception of child sexual exploitation: a case study of Harare (Zimbabwe) and London (UK).

      Jera, Nathan Togara (University of BedfordshireUniversity of Bedfordshire, 2019-07-30)
      The purpose of this research was to explore how Harare (Zimbabwe) and London (United Kingdom, UK) social workers understand and interpret ‘child sexual exploitation’ (CSE), and how they apply CSE policies and legislation to practice, including addressing the barriers they encounter when trying to protect children. Recognising that individual social workers interpret CSE legislation and policies differently, this thesis contributes new knowledge and shows gaps in practice within a ‘developing’ (Zimbabwe) and a ‘developed’ (UK) country. I decided to adopt a qualitative phenomenological approach with elements of a comparative study between Harare and London which provided an opportunity to make an in-depth study of the phenomena. I have chosen these two cities as both are experiencing increased identification of cases of sexually exploited children. More so, the two countries, Zimbabwe, and the UK, share a common history in that the former was once a British colony. A review of existing literature on CSE and professionals’ experiences was utilised in order to shed light on the results. To deepen my knowledge of this context, and prepare for interviews with social workers, I first piloted my semi-structured interview questions with three work colleagues who had knowledge of CSE. The study is primarily based on in-depth, semi-structured interviews with fifteen social workers from Harare and fifteen social workers from London who had experience of working with children at risk of CSE. Interviews were transcribed and analysed using a thematic approach, allowing me to inductively extract complex issues from my data, which was important to my topic using interpretative phenomenological analysis. The main findings of this research concluded that despite CSE being a subject that has attracted attention in both Harare and London, social workers still require more conscientisation, training and knowledge if their practice is to be more effective in reducing rates of CSE. The study noted that individual social workers give different interpretations of CSE and legislations and policies that guide practice, regardless of different geographical spatial locations. Although in London the study noted that some social workers still looked at CSE from a gender perspective towards girls, in Harare findings showed that customary law was legitimising gendered notions of CSE, posing challenges to social work intervention. In conclusion, the recommendations within this study, if adopted, have the potential to articulate and resolve some of the problems that social workers face during practice.