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Full-Text Articles in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Probabilistic Modeling Of Democracy, Corruption, Hemophilia A And Prediabetes Data, A. K. M. Raquibul Bashar Sep 2019

Probabilistic Modeling Of Democracy, Corruption, Hemophilia A And Prediabetes Data, A. K. M. Raquibul Bashar

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Parametric analysis of any real-world data is the most powerful tool to characterize the probabilistic behavior in social, economic, medical, epidemiological, and other areas of study. In the present study, we identify the theoretical Probability Distribution Function(PDF) for Democracy Index Scores (DIS) from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) database and estimate the maximum likelihood estimates of the theoretical PDFS. We also identify the individual PDFs for each of the clusters, Full Democracy, Flawed Democracy, Hybrid Regime, and Authoritarian Regime defined by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

A statistical model is a convenient instrument to predict the future value of ...


Habitat Suitability Index Model Of The Florida Sandhill Crane (Grus Canadensis Pratensis) In West-Central Florida, Courtney E. Buck Jun 2019

Habitat Suitability Index Model Of The Florida Sandhill Crane (Grus Canadensis Pratensis) In West-Central Florida, Courtney E. Buck

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The Florida Sandhill Crane (Grus canadensis pratensis) is a state threatened endemic subspecies of the Sandhill Crane (Nesbitt & Tacha, 1997). With a population that was estimated at a maximum of 5,000 individuals in 2003 (Nesbitt & Hatchitt, 2008), it is imperative to identify potentially viable habitats, as Florida is rapidly developing. This research develops a Habitat Suitability Index model to determine unsuitable to optimally suitable habitat locations throughout west-central Florida. To do so, six suitability variables based on the crane’s life history were evaluated: Potential nesting area, immediate nesting area, wetland coverage, foraging area, brooding area, and road proximity ...


Rethinking Map Literacy And An Analysis Of Quantitative Map Literacy, Ming Xie Jun 2019

Rethinking Map Literacy And An Analysis Of Quantitative Map Literacy, Ming Xie

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Maps are increasingly being used in traditional and virtual media, and civic discourse on political, social, and environmental issues, among others, is more and more becoming influenced by them. The often-used expression of a “picture tells a 1000 words” has never been so apt in our progressively more visual world. Despite this increased role and importance of maps, map literacy, as a field of research, remains rather underdeveloped. This is especially so for thematic maps, the very type of map that is finding increasing currency in discourse. As part of this under-developed nature of map literacy, the quantitative skills used ...


Comparative Assessment Of The Economic And Environmental Impacts Of Food Waste Fermentation On Value-Added Products, Noor Intan Shafinas Muhammad Jan 2019

Comparative Assessment Of The Economic And Environmental Impacts Of Food Waste Fermentation On Value-Added Products, Noor Intan Shafinas Muhammad

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The increasing amount of food waste (FW) is one of the most challenging problems around the world. The remarkable amount of FW produced is driven by various factors such as population growth, modernization, safety policy, culture, lifestyle, and human behavior. FW commonly will end up in the landfills and create more problems to the environment, ecosystem, human health, and economy. This organic waste is easy to decompose and emits greenhouse gases which will increase the global warming effect. Additionally, leachate from the landfill has the potential to contaminate nearby groundwater systems. It is important to divert FW from landfills and ...


A Feminist Political Ecology Of Food Justice In Iowa, Carrie Michelle Chennault Jan 2019

A Feminist Political Ecology Of Food Justice In Iowa, Carrie Michelle Chennault

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

In this dissertation, I study strategies for local and alternative food initiatives to advance more just and equitable approaches to food insecurity. My research focuses on one emerging type of local food initiative designed to address food insecurity, community donation gardening. I engaged in a three-year feminist and ethnographic study of a community-run and USDA- and Cooperative Extension-sponsored donation gardening and food rescue program, Growing Together Iowa. In Growing Together, community gardeners grow or glean food to distribute directly to community members experiencing food insecurity or alternatively to donate to partnering emergency food organizations, such as area food pantries. I ...


Essays On Labor Supply And Stock Effect In Fisheries, Somenath Bera Jan 2019

Essays On Labor Supply And Stock Effect In Fisheries, Somenath Bera

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation studies labor supply and stock effect in fisheries. Do people work more hours when paid a higher wage? The answer to this question has both micro (designing efficient workplaces) and macro (designing tax schedules) consequences. The occupation of fishermen provides a unique ground to test competing labor supply theories as fishermen have autonomy over the number of hours worked. Here the focus is on the commercial fishermen from the Alaskan halibut fishery. Chapter 2 summarizes the stylized facts of the fishery using detailed trip level data on catch, location, and target, among other things. The theoretical models of ...


Big Data Driven Assessment Of Probe-Sourced Data, Vesal Ahsani Jan 2019

Big Data Driven Assessment Of Probe-Sourced Data, Vesal Ahsani

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Presently, there is an expanding interest among transportation agencies and state Departments of Transportation to consider augmenting traffic data collection with probe-based services, such as INRIX. The objective is to decrease the cost of deploying and maintaining sensors and increase the coverage under constrained budgets. This dissertation documents a study evaluating the opportunities and challenges of using INRIX data in Midwest. The objective of this study is threefold: (1) quantitative analysis of probe data characteristics: coverage, speed bias, and congestion detection precision (2) improving probe based congestion performance metrics accuracy by using change point detection, and (3) assessing the impact ...


Freeway Traffic Incident Detection Using Large Scale Traffic Data And Cameras, Pranamesh Chakraborty Jan 2019

Freeway Traffic Incident Detection Using Large Scale Traffic Data And Cameras, Pranamesh Chakraborty

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Automatic incident detection (AID) is crucial for reducing non-recurrent congestion caused by traffic incidents. In this paper, a data-driven AID framework is proposed that can leverage large-scale historical traffic data along with the inherent topology of the traffic networks to obtain robust traffic patterns. Such traffic patterns can be compared with the real-time traffic data to detect traffic incidents in the road network. Our AID framework consists of two basic steps for traffic pattern estimation. First, we estimate a robust univariate speed threshold using historical traffic information from individual sensors. This step can be parallelized using MapReduce framework thereby making ...


A New Approach For Retrieving Soil Moisture From Smap Over The Corn Belt, Victoria A. Walker Jan 2019

A New Approach For Retrieving Soil Moisture From Smap Over The Corn Belt, Victoria A. Walker

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

NASA’s Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite utilizes passive observations of L–band (f = 1.41 GHz, λ = 21 cm) brightness temperature to estimate surface soil moisture at a spatial scale of 33 km approximately once per day in the U. S. Corn Belt. These observations have the potential to improve weather forecasting models, increase agricultural productivity, and provide decision support for flood and drought management. However, SMAP Level 2 Soil Moisture (L2SM) performs poorly in croplands validation sites such as the South Fork Iowa River (located in central Iowa); we hypothesize that this is due to the use ...


Livestock Production, Water Scarcity, And The Potential For Collaborative Water Governance In Northwest Iowa, Maggie Norton Jan 2019

Livestock Production, Water Scarcity, And The Potential For Collaborative Water Governance In Northwest Iowa, Maggie Norton

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

After a severe drought in 2012, stakeholders in northwest Iowa (NW Iowa) began exploring strategies to increase the resiliency of the region’s groundwater resources and distribution systems. The lead actor in the effort, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR), uses an emerging collaborative governance approach to engage stakeholder groups. We conducted in-depth interviews to explore NW Iowa stakeholders’ perceptions of current and future water supplies, water beliefs, values, and behaviors, interactions with other stakeholders, and preferences for groundwater governance and management. A stakeholder analysis is employed to characterize stakeholder groups and their positions of influence, levels of interest ...


Taking The Lab On The Road And Bringing The Road To The Lab: On Using Mixed-Methods And Virtual Reality To Study A Location-Based Task, Kofi Whitney Jan 2019

Taking The Lab On The Road And Bringing The Road To The Lab: On Using Mixed-Methods And Virtual Reality To Study A Location-Based Task, Kofi Whitney

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

In earlier work, a lab and field study were employed to evaluate participants who used a digital map to complete a surveying task. The lab incorporated photos to simulate various scenarios within the task environment. It had a high degree of experimental control, strengths in quantitative data collection, and it could be easily replicated. Whereas the field study took place in the task’s natural setting (a neighborhood); it afforded participants to navigate the environment on foot, which allowed for more ecologically valid task outcomes and rich qualitative data collection. The strengths of the lab method were desired, but the ...


Aimm: A Methodology For Measuring Bank Erosion On A Statewide Scale, Forrest Williams Jan 2019

Aimm: A Methodology For Measuring Bank Erosion On A Statewide Scale, Forrest Williams

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Sediment and Phosphorus are major sources of pollution and impairment within rivers and streams. Excess sediment input to rivers and streams can encourage the accelerated growth of harmful algal blooms, which in turn can be responsible for waterbody eutrophication, and the creation of coastal hypoxic zones. These issues are particularly relevant within Iowa, where land use changes, such as the conversion of land to row crop agriculture, installation of subsurface drainage, and straightening of waterways have led to increases in the stream-power of Iowa’s waterways. This in turn has resulted in increasing rates of bank erosion within Iowa’s ...


Evaluation Of Work Zone Safety Using The Shrp2 Naturalistic Driving Study Data, Amrita Goswamy Jan 2019

Evaluation Of Work Zone Safety Using The Shrp2 Naturalistic Driving Study Data, Amrita Goswamy

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Work zones provide challenging and hazardous conditions not only for vehicle drivers, but also for highway workers who are injured or killed by errant vehicles. Over, 96,000 work zone crashes occurred in 2015 which equates to a work zone crash every 5.4 minutes. Several factors have been noted as contributing to work zone crashes. Driver factors have not been as well studied as other factors. The main objective of this study was to evaluate safety in work zones utilizing the SHRP2, Roadway Information Database (511 data) to identify potential work-zones. The study looked into the effectiveness of each ...


Smallholder Farmers’ Social Capital, Resource Access And Adoption Of Integrated Soil Fertility Management Technologies And Practices In The Masaka Bean Innovation Platform, Naboth Bwambale Jan 2019

Smallholder Farmers’ Social Capital, Resource Access And Adoption Of Integrated Soil Fertility Management Technologies And Practices In The Masaka Bean Innovation Platform, Naboth Bwambale

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

In recent times, there has been growing interest in adopting the use of innovation platforms (IPs) to facilitate multistakeholder involvement in agricultural research for development. This is based on realization that traditional linear and non-participatory approaches that have been used to generate, promote and disseminate agricultural innovations to end users have shown limited progress in promoting technology adoption. An IP is a network comprised of multiple interdependent stakeholders, often with different backgrounds and goals, who jointly collaborate through interactive learning processes to effectively diagnose a problem and find solutions to the identified problem. However, farmers’ involvement in networks for collective ...


High-Precision Lead Isotope Analysis On Modern Populations To Determine Geolocation Reliability, Gennifer M. Goad Nov 2018

High-Precision Lead Isotope Analysis On Modern Populations To Determine Geolocation Reliability, Gennifer M. Goad

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Forensic anthropologists increasingly use chemical isotope analysis in the investigation of unidentified human remains, as biochemical georeferencing continually improves with the development of modern reference data of known origins. Isotope variations in trace elements such as strontium (Sr) and lead (Pb) in human teeth are some of the most useful indicators of past domicile in archaeological research and thus have high potential for modern, forensic applications. In this study, high-precision lead isotope analysis was conducted on 63 modern human teeth, which were previously analyzed for strontium isotopes. The results present new lead isotope data for the following countries: United States ...


Pursuing Resilience Of Coastal Communities Through Sustainable And Integrated Urban Water Management, Pacia Díaz Nov 2018

Pursuing Resilience Of Coastal Communities Through Sustainable And Integrated Urban Water Management, Pacia Díaz

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Reliability of water supply in the urban setting has become essential for communities to function and thrive. It is needed for more than mere human consumption and well-being. Although modern cities have water treatment and distribution systems, pressures from urbanization, population growth and the anticipated pressures of climate change are affecting the quality of water supply and the reliability of treatment and distribution systems. There is therefore an urgent need to take appropriate measures to improve the resilience of water supply systems before the impacts are irreversible.

Improving the resilience of water supply systems can be a challenge. In the ...


Assessing The Cooling Effects Of Urban Vegetation On Urban Heat Mitigation In Selected U.S. Cities, Qiuyan Yu Nov 2018

Assessing The Cooling Effects Of Urban Vegetation On Urban Heat Mitigation In Selected U.S. Cities, Qiuyan Yu

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Urban Heat Island (UHI) is a growing problem worldwide. Mitigation of UHI is necessary for cities to adapt to climate change and enhance sustainable development at a city scale. Cooling cities with urban vegetation management is a sustainable solution for urban heat mitigation. Urban vegetation influences urban microclimate through the shading effect, surface roughness, and evapotranspiration. The differences in horizontal and vertical structures of urban vegetation determine the shading effect, surface roughness, and evapotranspiration. Enhancing the cooling effect of urban vegetation requires a comprehensive understanding of how vegetation structure affects UHI. The effects of horizontal structure on land surface temperature ...


A Cost Benefit Analysis Of Using A Battery Energy Storage System (Bess) Represented By A Unit Commitment Model, Nemanja Mihailovic Nov 2018

A Cost Benefit Analysis Of Using A Battery Energy Storage System (Bess) Represented By A Unit Commitment Model, Nemanja Mihailovic

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This thesis aims to provide a general overview of a cost and benefit analysis of incorporating a battery energy storage system within unit commitment model.

The deregulation of the electricity market in the U.S. has only been around for the last two decades. With renewable energy and energy storage systems becoming less expensive, a decentralized market scheme is becoming more popular and plausible. The scope of this work is to provide a fundamental understanding of unit commitment and a cost analysis of applying a battery energy storage system to an already established power system.

A battery energy storage system ...


An Investigation Of Habitat Suitability Factors And Their Interactions For Predicting Gopher Tortoise Habitat, Abigail V. Lavallin Oct 2018

An Investigation Of Habitat Suitability Factors And Their Interactions For Predicting Gopher Tortoise Habitat, Abigail V. Lavallin

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This thesis evaluates the interaction between four habitat factors vital to the gopher tortoise in Florida. Federally and state listed as threatened throughout its entire range, the gopher tortoise is vital to protect, not only for itself individually but its burrows provide an essential habitat to over 300 species making it a key stone species within its environment. Historic habitat modeling methods are reviewed for the gopher tortoise to highlight the gap on this topic. This research expanded on the methods utilized by Baskaran et al. (2006) evaluating the soil, landcover, percentage of canopy cover and the depth to water ...


Access To Safe Water Supply: Management Of Catchment For The Protection Of Source Water In Ghana, Michael K. Eduful Oct 2018

Access To Safe Water Supply: Management Of Catchment For The Protection Of Source Water In Ghana, Michael K. Eduful

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This study investigates provisions made within institutional and regulatory frameworks of water resources management to enhance multi-stakeholder relationships and the challenges of maintaining those relationships, and implications of water resources management for rural communities in the Densu River basin, Ghana. The primary objectives of this study were four fold, these are to: i) review the existing regulatory framework and how it promotes or hinders multi-stakeholder relationships within the catchment area; ii) examine multi-stakeholder relationships to identify challenges in promoting effective collaboration in water resources management; iii) explore the impacts of catchment management on the livelihoods of rural communities; and iv ...


Emotion Recognition Using Deep Convolutional Neural Network With Large Scale Physiological Data, Astha Sharma Oct 2018

Emotion Recognition Using Deep Convolutional Neural Network With Large Scale Physiological Data, Astha Sharma

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Classification of emotions plays a very important role in affective computing and has real-world applications in fields as diverse as entertainment, medical, defense, retail, and education. These applications include video games, virtual reality, pain recognition, lie detection, classification of Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), analysis of stress levels, and determining attention levels. This vast range of applications motivated us to study automatic emotion recognition which can be done by using facial expression, speech, and physiological data.

A person’s physiological signals such are heart rate, and blood pressure are deeply linked with their emotional states and can be used to identify ...


Assessing The Impacts Of Ghana’S Oil And Gas Industry On Ecosystem Services And Smallholder Livelihoods, Michael Acheampong Aug 2018

Assessing The Impacts Of Ghana’S Oil And Gas Industry On Ecosystem Services And Smallholder Livelihoods, Michael Acheampong

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Ghana discovered oil and gas within its shores in commercial quantities in the year, 2007. This discovery was hailed as a potential turn around for the country’s economic destiny. While this optimism may have been well-founded, there has been a relative lack of appreciation of the potential adverse implications of the industry on traditional smallholder livelihoods, and the critical ecosystems that form their basis. In many countries, discovery of natural resources results in negative environmental and social outcomes, due to the loss of local livelihoods and environmental degradation. Deterioration of local livelihoods occurs through several biophysical pathways, both simple ...


A Comparative Study On Coastal Zone Changes And Anthropogenic Impacts Between Tampa Bay, Usa, And Xiangshan Harbor, China, During The Last 30 Years, Qiandong Guo Jun 2018

A Comparative Study On Coastal Zone Changes And Anthropogenic Impacts Between Tampa Bay, Usa, And Xiangshan Harbor, China, During The Last 30 Years, Qiandong Guo

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Currently, the U.S. and China are the two largest national economic entities in the world. However, it is noticeable that the two countries have considerably different strategies for economic development, environmental protection and land supply in coastal zones. In order to understand the coastline dynamics, land use land cover (LULC) changes and land management policies in the U.S. and China, a case study of the Tampa Bay (TB) watershed, Florida, U.S., and Xiangshan Harbor (XH), Zhejiang Province, China was conducted. The two areas possess similar humid subtropical climate and dense population, but experienced different anthropogenic impacts. TB ...


Remote Sensing And Spatial Metrics For Quantifying Seagrass Landscape Changes: A Study On The 2011 Indian River Lagoon Florida Seagrass Die-Off Event, René Dieter Baumstark Mar 2018

Remote Sensing And Spatial Metrics For Quantifying Seagrass Landscape Changes: A Study On The 2011 Indian River Lagoon Florida Seagrass Die-Off Event, René Dieter Baumstark

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Florida’s seagrasses are ecologically important marine environments which have suffered major degradation caused by increasing anthropogenic pressures. A 2011 seagrass die-off event caused by an algal bloom in the Florida Indian River Lagoon (IRL) was particularly severe with a majority of seagrass lost in areas such as the Banana River. An understanding of how this coastal marine environment changed is an important step toward better managing resources for conservation. Modern tools and methods provide new opportunities to study these changes at the landscape scale, a scale that informs on the larger more comprehensive state of a system. Classified satellite ...


Assessment Of Drinking Water Quality Management And A Treatment Feasibility Study For Brick By Brick Water Storage Tanks In Rakai Uganda, James V. Murduca Mar 2018

Assessment Of Drinking Water Quality Management And A Treatment Feasibility Study For Brick By Brick Water Storage Tanks In Rakai Uganda, James V. Murduca

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Reliable access to safe drinking water is one necessity for humans to live without concern for major health risks. The overall goal of this research is to improve the public health, through improved drinking water, for communities in the Rakai District in Uganda, directly, and other communities in the world, indirectly, via dissemination of knowledge. This study specifically assessed the knowledge of drinking water quality in regards to public health, their sanitation measures, and water treatment methods for users of Brick by Brick rainwater harvesting tanks in the Rakai District (N = 28) by using a knowledge, attitudes, and practice survey ...


Reconstructing Historical Hurricane Tracks In The Atlantic Basin: Three Case Studies From The 1840s, Emily L. Cerrito Mar 2018

Reconstructing Historical Hurricane Tracks In The Atlantic Basin: Three Case Studies From The 1840s, Emily L. Cerrito

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Analyzing past tropical cyclone activity enables researchers to recognize patterns of hurricane variability, estimate hurricane return periods, and assess local risk to future storms. This paleotempestology study used original primary data to make the historical record as comprehensive and accurate as possible for three major hurricanes: October 1844, October 1846, and September 1848. This thesis presents the reconstructed storm tracks, assesses the societal impacts, and evaluates the storm intensity of these three major hurricanes for the eastern U.S. and Cuba. The data utilized in this study include ship logbooks, newspapers, diaries, and instrumental meteorological records. A geographic information system ...


Three Essays On The Economics Of U.S. Water Policy, Xianjun Qiu Jan 2018

Three Essays On The Economics Of U.S. Water Policy, Xianjun Qiu

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The complicated relationship between human activities and water quality/quantity has interested many researchers. My primary research interest lies in environmental economics and water resource policy. This dissertation studies water quality and water quantity in the United States, especially groundwater. In particular, the first chapter, “The Conservation Reserve Program and Nutrient Pollution in Groundwater”, studies how the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) affects groundwater quality in the United States. The second chapter of my dissertation, “Reliable Drinking Water Supply and Cities’ Resilience to Drought” (joint with Dr. David Keiser, Dr. Gabriel Lade, and Dr. Ivan Rudik), studies how differences in drinking ...


Spatial Modeling Of Agricultural Catchments With Management Boundaries, Daniel Linton Jan 2018

Spatial Modeling Of Agricultural Catchments With Management Boundaries, Daniel Linton

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The objective of this research was to assess the effect of perennial vegetation strips (PVSs), installed on the contours of row cropped fields, on the spatial distribution of soil properties. These PVSs have been shown to provide ecosystem services missing in conventionally row-cropped fields including sediment control, nutrient control, as well as habitat for wildlife and pollinators. While several studies have focused on edge of field monitoring, the spatial distribution of soil properties surrounding and within the PVSs is less understood. To examine these potential differences of soil properties in relation to PVSs, soil samples were collected on hillslope profile ...


Investigating Consumer Motivations For Sustainable Hotel Practices And The Effect On Satisfaction And Attitudinal Loyalty, Magnus Thorsson Jan 2018

Investigating Consumer Motivations For Sustainable Hotel Practices And The Effect On Satisfaction And Attitudinal Loyalty, Magnus Thorsson

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Sustainable hotel practices focus on minimizing the negative impact of hospitality operations on the environment and the global climate. Hotels are resource demanding utilizing more water and electricity and generating more solid waste per person than in a residential setting. Public concern over environmental degradation is growing in step with consumer demand for sustainable business practices. This study employed the theory of planned behavior to understand better the underlying motivations of hotel guests to engage in the sustainable efforts of hotel practitioners. Structural equation modeling was used to empirically investigate what drives guest motivations toward participation in sustainable hotel practices ...


Ring-Necked Pheasant Responses To Wind Energy In Iowa, James N. Dupuie Jan 2018

Ring-Necked Pheasant Responses To Wind Energy In Iowa, James N. Dupuie

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

An important Iowa gamebird, Ring-necked Pheasants (Phasianus colchichus) are of value to wildlife managers, who seek to maintain and increase their populations in Iowa. There are a number of challenges facing pheasants in Iowa, and this thesis seeks to inform some of the effort to overcome those challenges, particularly in areas of Iowa with wind farms. We took a large scale view to identify counties that have historically been favorable for pheasants, a smaller scale view to address concerns about wind energy development effects on pheasants, and evaluated an alternative method for conducting pheasant surveys. Our results suggest that male ...