31 March 2022

Research pick: Driving electric vehicle purchases - "Electric vehicles purchase perceptions. Effect on environmental awareness"

The shift away from the internal combustion engine to electric vehicles holds great promise for reducing noxious pollution in our towns and cities. It will also reduce the carbon footprint of transport if the electricity is generated from sustainable and renewable sources, such as wind and solar. The shift will also reduce our dependency on the limited resource that is oil. Research published in the International Journal of Energy Technology and Policy looks at the public perception of electric vehicles and environmental awareness.

Noelia Araújo-Vila and José Antonio Fraiz-Brea of the Business and Tourism Faculty at the University of Vigo in Ourense, Spain and Lucília Cardoso of the Instituto Politécnico de Leiria in Peniche, Portugal have surveyed 463 individuals to determine EV purchase intention and to see what pros and cons these people see with EVs when compared to conventional vehicles. Fundamentally, relatively high vehicle prices, limited range between charges and the scarcity of charging stations and specialised workshops are still deterring a lot of drivers from making the shift to an EV.

The researchers suggest that society itself needs to adapt urgently to replace the internal combustion engine with the electric motor. In order for the necessary changes to be made, the advantages to individual drivers and to the environment need to be made more apparent. There is a very pressing need to combat pollution and climate change and in some regions, legislation is forcing the internal combustion engine out of the market and off the roads. At the moment, the team writes, a mere 7 in every 1000 cars driven in Spain is an EV. Fewer than one in five drivers report an intention to switch to an EV with their next purchase.

Many countries and states are reluctant to accelerate the implementation of the necessary laws and so public awareness, opinion and thus purchase intention need to be driven in the right direction towards a sustainable future for personal transportation. Measures need to be put in place that reduce or even eliminate the roadblocks that are preventing from buying EVs. For instance, research must be done to find a better type of rechargeable battery to allow the vehicle range between charging to be extended considerably. The charging network must also be expanded and we must increase the number of specialist mechanics needed to maintain and repair EVs. The potential market is enormous but with too little awareness among the public, the industry and legislators may have to kickstart the process to help navigate the public in the right direction.

Araújo-Vila, N., Cardoso, L. and Fraiz-Brea, J.A. (2022) ‘Electric vehicles purchase perceptions. Effect on environmental awareness’, Int. J. Energy Technology and Policy, Vol. 18, No. 1, pp.32–56.

30 March 2022

Research pick: New media art goes public

Can new media art in public spaces have a positive impact on people’s lifestyle and wellbeing? Research from China published in the International Journal of Computer Applications in Technology tackles this question.

Zhigang Wang and Ye Wang of the Academy of Arts & Design at Tsinghua University in Haidian, Beijing, and Yu Sun of the College of Arts and Design at Beijing Forestry University also in Haidian, suggest that public art can have an impact on art communication and appreciation as well as having commercial benefits for business in the public spaces where the art is installed. The evolution of new media art, of course, adds new dimensions to the traditional conception of art as static and non-interactive. Engaging new media artworks have the advantages of giving the people enjoying the art novel ways to experience it and interact with it.

In some senses new media art offers a new form of mass communication, combining as it does experience design and display design. It brings together our cultural lives and the technological world and can be inspirational, enjoyable, and even informative. Moreover, it allows the public consciousness to evolve in the public spaces in which installations are placed in a way that conventional art in galleries and exhibition halls may not.

The team reports that there are many novel and diverse ways in which artistic culture, design, and technology are now being brought together in new media artworks in public spaces. “The ultimate significance is to enhance the cultural communication ability of commercial space, and promote people’s cultural consumption level,” the team writes. We can perceive new media art in commercial public spaces as an upgrade to those spaces in terms of cultural and artistic communication.

Indeed, the team adds, the development of commercial public spaces is critical to the evolution of cities and their citizens. New media art design fits precisely with the futuristic view we could have for the development of commercial public spaces that benefit those citizens and the commercial concerns that use them.

Wang, Z., Wang, Y. and Sun, Y. (2021) ‘New media art design in commercial public space’, Int. J. Computer Applications in Technology, Vol. 67, Nos. 2/3, pp.244–251.

29 March 2022

Research pick: Scrum to tackle musical concerts - "Adopting scrum methodology in the project of organising a concert"

There are two approaches to the management of a project. The traditional waterfall, or cascade, model involves creating a detailed plan for the sequences of steps that must be carried out to take the project from inception to manifestation. Such a linear approach can be compromised when problems arise that require changes that can have a knock-on effect further down the line.

An alternative approach to managing a project is the agile approach. A project is considered to be a collection of relatively small stages, known as cycles or iterations, that are interconnected rather than a complete process that runs from beginning to end in a linear manner. This more modular approach to project management allows changes to be made and problems to be addressed by adjusting the components of a small stage without necessarily disturbing the flow of the other stages and so, as is the name suggests is more adaptable. While agile project management initially emerged from the world of information technology it finds application in many disparate areas and itself now takes many different forms each suited to those areas where agile project management is needed.

Writing in the International Journal of Project Organisation and Management, a team from Poland has looked at a particularly popular form of agile project management – Scrum – originally devised by Jeff Sutherland and Ken Schwaber as a tool for managing complex software development. The team, Ewa Marchwicka, Paulina Tusz, and Jan Betta of the Wroclaw University of Science and Technology in Poland suggest that the Scrum approach is well suited to organizing a musical concert.

The Scrum website itself describes the approach as “a lightweight yet incredibly powerful set of values, principles, and practices.” It relies on cross-functional teams that can deliver products and services in short cycles, which means it offers fast feedback, quicker innovation, continuous improvement, and rapid adaptation to change. The team hopes these benefits will be applicable to organising concerts under the auspices of The National Forum of Music in Poland. Indeed, their initial investigations and interviews, although not definitive at this point, do suggest that music institutions would benefit enormously from adopting the Scrum approach to managing their projects.

Marchwicka, E., Tusz, P. and Betta, J. (2022) ‘Adopting scrum methodology in the project of organising a concert’, Int. J. Project Organisation and Management, Vol. 14, No. 1, pp.1–19.

28 March 2022

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Services and Operations Management

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Services and Operations Management are now available here for free:
  • Superiority of fuzzy AHP-VIKOR approach in an agile environment
  • Systematic literature review on application of business analytics and information technology in supply chain performances
  • Factors predicting employee engagement in Indian manufacturing sector
  • A heuristic and GRASP algorithm for three-dimensional multiple bin-size bin packing problem based on the needs of a spare-part company
  • A Pareto-based optimisation algorithm for a multi-objective integrated production-distribution planning problem of a multi-echelon supply chain network design
  • A comparative study of online review management in hospitality services
  • Economic ordering model for multiple items with stochastic demand and budget constraint

Research pick: Legal indifference to refugees - "Legal silos and indifference: the wrongful prosecution of refugees and asylum-seekers in the UK"

A new analysis of the prosecutions of refugees and asylum-seekers in the UK suggests that there are three main reasons why they do not fare will. Work published in the International Journal of Migration and Border Studies, suggests that there is only a ‘patchwork’ of protections to safeguard refugees and asylum-seekers from unwarranted prosecution. There is also a major problem in that state and legal institutions operate in policy silos and fail to communicate with each other. Finally, there is a significant indifference among legal institutions to the plight of desperate people and moreover, they are deeply hostile towards them.

John R. Campbell of the Department of Anthropology & Sociology at SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies), University of London, UK, explains that the UK government has consistently prosecuted and convicted asylum-seekers. This he suggests is in contravention of the government’s obligations under the 1951 Refugee Convention. The underlying terms of the pertinent Article of the convention say that people ‘coming directly’ from a country of persecution cannot be punished by the receiving state on the basis of their entry or presence in that state as being deemed ‘illegal’ by the host government. Indeed, it says that ‘as far as possible states should facilitate the assimilation and naturalization of refugees’. There is a caveat in that those who have gained nominally illegal entry to a country under these circumstances should present themselves to the authorities in a timely manner.

The UK is not the only country to flout the Convention, Campbell adds, but in so doing repeatedly, the UK has also then felt at liberty to adopt numerous measures and pass laws that are, he suggests, aimed explicitly at criminalising and demonising refugees and asylum-seekers. The legislation also sanctions ‘carriers’ – the airlines and shipping companies, for instance. The UK now enforces passport and visa obligations on refugees and asylum-seekers that allow prosecutions to take place in order to reduce the number entering the country. The penalties have been maintained over years and have been buttressed by additional restrictive laws.

Campbell suggests that the UK not only fails in the context of the 1951 Refugee Convention but its legal actions can be seen as an attempt to end the right of asylum. He writes that the British government needs to revise existing legislation so that refugees and asylum-seekers are given immunity from prosecution and it must rein in the tendency of the Home Office to undermine international law. In addition, it must reject the proposed Nationality and Borders Bill 2021, which criminalises asylum-seeking.

Campbell, J.R. (2022) ‘Legal silos and indifference: the wrongful prosecution of refugees and asylum-seekers in the UK’, Int. J. Migration and Border Studies, Vol. 7, No. 1, pp.35–50.

26 March 2022

Special issue published: "Operational Excellence in Services"

International Journal of Services and Operations Management 41(1/2) 2022

  • Assessing the degree of perceived risk in adoption of mobile payment system by retailers in India
  • Quality assessment of Brazilian fast-food business services
  • Markov analysis of academic performance of students in higher education: a case study of an engineering institution
  • The impact of total quality management by mediator's compliance and information technology on education performance in secondary schools Iraq
  • Completion time variance and the product rate variation problem
  • A multi-objective mathematical model for the design of a closed cycle green distribution network of mass consumption products
  • Distribution channel coordination in green supply chain management in the presence of price premium effects
  • Analysis of post-harvest supply chain impediments for rural employability and waste reduction
  • Supply chain contracts with price and effort dependent demand
Additional papers
  • Using time motion study to identify the determinants of patient satisfaction and impact of long appointment wait time: an empirical case of radiology department
  • Modelling a multi-objective problem for emergency response in disaster management: emphasising on mitigating the impact of the delay in the crisis severity

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Migration and Border Studies

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Migration and Border Studies are now available here for free:
  • Engaging migrant careworkers: examining cases of exploitation by recruitment agencies in Quebec, Canada
  • Freedom, technology and surveillance: everyday paradoxes on the EU-Morocco border
  • The interoperability controversy or how to fail successfully: lessons from Europe
  • The socio-genesis of a guild of 'digital technologies' justifying transnational interoperable databases in the name of security and border purposes: a reframing of the field of security professionals?
  • The power elite of security research in Europe: from competitiveness and external stability to dataveillance and societal security
  • The civil paradox: Swedish arms production and export and the role of emerging security technologies
  • The crafting of a paradox: Schengen inside and out

Special issue published: "Simulation and Process Modelling in Industry and Logistics: New Advances in Theory, Methods and Applications"

International Journal of Simulation and Process Modelling 17(2/3) 2021

  • Systems of distributed artificial intelligence for analysis of oil product transportation processes: evidence from Russia
  • Simulation-based cost optimisation of a risk mitigation strategy in an assembly job manufacturing process: a case study from the offshore wind industry
  • A fuzzy cognitive map-based approach to prioritise environmental objectives in the environmental management systems of ports
  • Discrete event simulation for the investment analysis of offshore wind manufacturing processes
  • Discrete-event modelling of the capacity of the toll collection exit point and the formation of congestion
  • Robotic process automation and reengineering using Bizagi and UiPath: case study on mortgage request process
  • Society 5.0: a simulation optimisation study of dynamic scheduling for a grocery store
  • Human factor and entropy evaluation in collaborative workplace environment
  • Dynamic characteristics and fatigue life analysis of key parts of ring die pellet mill
  • Multi-lane trajectory control for autonomous vehicle convoy based on a longitudinal and lateral control coupled approach

Free open access article available: "Greek and European consumer behaviour towards beef, lamb and mutton meat safety and quality: a review"

The following paper, "Greek and European consumer behaviour towards beef, lamb and mutton meat safety and quality: a review" (International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology 17(2/3/4) 2022), is freely available for download as an open access article.

It can be downloaded via the full-text link available here.

25 March 2022

Special issue published: "Artificial Intelligence for Edge Computing in the Internet of Things"

International Journal of Ad Hoc and Ubiquitous Computing 39(4) 2022

  • Application of artificial intelligence technology in CNC system
  • Functional feature-aware APP recommendation with personalised PageRank
  • Development of internet finance industry with the core of e-commerce platform services optimised by the edge computing of the internet of things based on artificial intelligence
  • Artificial intelligence technology in internet financial edge computing and analysis of security risk
  • Reducing the internet traffic in IoT-based monitoring and control system through a combination of WSN and LoRaWAN networks

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Business Continuity and Risk Management

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Business Continuity and Risk Management are now available here for free:
  • Factors influencing the risk propensity of Malaysian project managers in the construction industry
  • Case study: development of an integrative approach to assess municipalities' resilience potential
  • Management of nuclear power plant emergency: a case of Korea
  • Assessing the risk reducing effect of measures against intelligent attacks: review and discussion of some common approaches
  • Driving excellence in credit risk management practices in commercial lending - an empirical analysis of Indian public sector banks

Research pick: Growing low-hanging fruit - "Development of horticulture in arid conditions of Kazakhstan with the use of innovative technology to hydrogelision ‘AQUASORB’ in the soil"

Arid regions of the world have always struggled to grow crops but climate change and drought coupled with stronger winds can lead to a greater rate of soil erosion exacerbating the problem. Work in the International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, looks at how the problems facing horticulture might be addressed with the use of innovative technology

Alevtina Danilova, Andrey Vinokurov, and Elena Isakova of the Altai Botanic Garden part of the Kazakh Academy of Sciences in Leninogorsk, and Naziya Suleimenova and Yerzhan Abildaev of Kazakhstan National Agricultural University in Almat, Kazakhstan, have focused on a group of fruit trees and other trees and shrubs grown in the arid South-East and East Kazakhstan. They have investigated the water-saving potential of an absorbent hydrogel polymer ‘AQUASORB’, which can improve the agrophysical properties of soil. Aquasorb is a polyacrylamide that can absorb 400 times its own weight in water. The soluble material has been used elsewhere to flocculate irrigated soil, which improves water penetration, soil aeration, and reduces soil erosion.

In their experiments, with test growing sites, the team found that the use of granules of this polymer at up to just 2 kilograms per cubic metre of soil, increases the total and productive moisture reserves in the soil. This in turn leads to a significant (11 per cent) increase in the holding capacity of the leaves of the trees and shrubs. Species tested included Thuja occidentalis (white cedar), Berberis iliensis (barberry), Crataegus oxyacantha (hawthorn), Padus virginiana (bird cherry), Ribes (currant), Malus (apple tree), Picea obovata (Siberian spruce), Betula pendula (silver birch), and Acer platanoides (Norway maple). This increase in holding capacity, the team explains, boosts their potential to cope with dry periods.

Danilova, A., Suleimenova, N., Vinokurov, A., Isakova, E. and Abildaev, Y. (2021) ‘Development of horticulture in arid conditions of Kazakhstan with the use of innovative technology to hydrogelision ‘AQUASORB’ in the soil’, Int. J. Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, Vol. 17, Nos. 2/3/4, pp.225–237.

Special Issue published: "IoT in Agriculture" (includes free open access article)

International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology 17(2/3/4) 2021

  • Practical IoT application review on the innovation activity: industrialised agriculture of Russian experience
  • Use of open platform communications for water resources management in the internet of things platform
  • Socio-economic aspects of innovative enterprises management in a digital agricultural system
  • Key aspects of the formation of a single information space in the context of sustainable development of business structures in the agro-industrial complex
  • Upgrading agricultural mechanisation by smart technological shredders of roughage and grain feeds for a mobile mini feed-centre
  • IOT process for sugar beet productivity by long-term use of phosphorus fertilisers on irrigated light chestnut soil
  • Analysis of the state of breeding in dairy cattle breeding by digital technologies
  • Creating a phenological database using electronic information and IOT in the Mangyshlak experimental botanical garden
  • Study of the hydraulic technology in smart agrian machines for cleaning shaft wells in the mobile unit
  • Development of horticulture in arid conditions of Kazakhstan with the use of innovative technology to hydrogelision 'AQUASORB' in the soil
  • IoT-based fully automatic smart providing aseptic materials for vitro and cryogenic collections of wild Juglans regia L. for genetic resources preservation
  • Measuring spatial-temporal regularities of river flow based on IoT technology
  • Smart handling dynamic process of seed treatment for sowing within the digital transformation concept
  • Obtaining pesticides and fertilisers for hyper production of citric acid application in smart agriculture system
  • Digitalisation effect on the microclimate and functional characteristics of the artificial insemination point for mobile sheep
  • Experimental results of functional characteristics of IoT for free range sheep breeding
  • Research of technological parameters of colour sorting of alfalfa seed mixture
  • Analysis of wireless technology in monitoring the current state of well waters
  • Review of the future smart farmers among industry, social conflict and lost of agricultural land in Indonesia
  • Prevalence and surgical treatment of swelling occurring in Syrian Awassi sheep based on the IoT technology
  • Modern harvesting in precision agriculture by wrapping mechanism of haylage rolls' packager with stretch film in a line
  • Real-time forests monitoring system based on IOT for forest and grassland primary production and biodiversity conservation
Additional paper
  • Greek and European consumer behaviour towards beef, lamb and mutton meat safety and quality: a review [OPEN ACCESS]

24 March 2022

Special issue published: "Nanocomposite Materials: Synthesis Properties and Applications"

International Journal of Microstructure and Materials Properties 15(5/6) 2021

  • Detection of grinding surface damage of nanocrystalline optical glass based on wavelet transfinite learning machine
  • Thermochemical reaction characteristics of degradable active materials under high temperature conditions
  • The measurement of SH-CCT curve and analysis on microstructure and performance of heat-affected zone of Q690 high-strength bridge steel
  • Durability evaluation modelling of rebar Al2O3 nano-particles epoxy coating
  • Study on hydrophilic properties of transparent conductive nano silver films in ionic liquids
  • Preparation and photocatalytic performance of fly ash based nanocomposites
  • A fuzzy control method of nano material forming temperature based on PLC
  • Analysis of microscopic properties of fibre reinforced polymer composites
  • Study on compression moulding characteristics of carbon fibre materials in sports equipment
Additional papers
  • Investigation of microstructure and mechanical properties of commercial aluminium processed after ECAP
  • Influence of fibre volume on the structural behaviour of ultra-high-performance fibrous concrete

Research pick: It’s sheep we’re up against - "Digitalisation effect on the microclimate and functional characteristics of the artificial insemination point for mobile sheep"

There are numerous methods of sperm acquisition in livestock rearing when artificial insemination of females is required. A team writing in the International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, explains that “voluntary collection by positive mammalian encouragement” is commonly used with sheep. They point out that proper organization of herd reproduction is one of the key issues of sheep breeding and describe how ensuring a suitable microclimate in a particular location can improve lambing yields from gimmers (two-year-old ewes).

R.A. Omarov, K.M. Kuder, and D.R. Omar of the Research and Production Centre of Agricultural Engineering, in Almaty, J.M. Alikhanov Kazakh of the National Agrarian Research University, and B.I. Musabayev and T.E. Kenzhebayev of the Medeubekov Research Institute of Sheep Breeding of the Kazakh Research Institute of Animal Husbandry, explain how they have compared acceptable approaches that involve microclimate-managed static or mobile insemination pens and found that the operating costs of a mobile pen in the pasture can undercut the static pen approach by 20 to 25 per cent. Part of the benefit of using a mobile pen is reducing the number of sheep that require handling at the same time in the same place when a static pen approach is used. There are thus hygiene benefits with a mobile pen. Also, it is the only option for many farms that do not have a suitable site nor the resources to construct and use a static pen.

Natural insemination may well be favoured among livestock holders with small flocks or specialist breeders of rare breeds. However, for very large farms with huge flocks putting a tup (breeding ram) to the ewes has several disadvantages regardless of the enthusiasm of the tup. Artificial insemination allows the breeder to obtain sperm from a specific high-value breeding stock from a supplier. The sperm will be quality controlled. Artificial insemination also reduces the risk of spreading infectious diseases through a flock. It also allows the farmer to control the timing of insemination so that the birth of the lambs can be coordinated to fit favourable weather conditions and even the markets.

Omarov, R.A., Alikhanov, J.M., Musabayev, B.I., Kenzhebayev, T.E., Kuder, K.M. and Omar, D.R. (2021) ‘Digitalisation effect on the microclimate and functional characteristics of the artificial insemination point for mobile sheep’, Int. J. Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, Vol. 17, Nos. 2/3/4, pp.287–300.

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Manufacturing Research

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Manufacturing Research are now available here for free:
  • Multi-objective optimisation of friction stir welding parameters: integration of FEM and NSGA-II
  • Experimental and statistical investigation into micro-EDM of Hastelloy-X using PVD diamond-coated and AlTiN-coated tungsten carbide electrodes
  • A numerical investigation of friction stir welding parameters in joining dissimilar aluminium alloys using finite element method
  • Effects of injection moulding parameters on pattern performance of in-mould decorative product
  • Machine learning algorithms benchmarking for real-time fault predictable scheduling on a shop floor

First issue: International Journal of Student Project Reporting (free sample issue available)

The International Journal of Student Project Reporting is the first journal dedicated to publishing peer-reviewed reports on the research and design process, validation and implementation of student-conducted projects in the fields of computing science, engineering, architecture and related areas. The journal also publishes short communications, letters to the Editor and reviews of textbooks in the same areas. A Best Paper Award, sponsored by Maplesoft, is awarded annually.

There is a free download of the papers from this first issue.

23 March 2022

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Manufacturing Technology and Management

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Manufacturing Technology and Management are now available here for free:
  • Dual-network embeddedness, absorptive capacity, and enterprise innovation performance: evidence from the Chinese hi-tech manufacturing industry
  • Design of type-2 fuzzy logic controller for fluid catalytic cracking unit
  • Prediction of performance and emission characteristics of biodiesel microexplosion process in CI engine by utilising NN-IABC approach
  • Modelling and analysis on influential machining parameters of 38MnSiVS5 micro alloyed steel by D-optimal design
  • Revisiting sustainable EOQ model considering carbon emission

Special issue published: "Sustainability, Mobility and Opportunity"

International Journal of Sustainable Society 13(4) 2021

  • Public policy on gender equality in the United Arab Emirates: a critical appraisal
  • UN sustainable development goals: a rubric to evaluate sincerity for implementing long-term sustainability pledges
  • In quest of integration: diasporic organisations' negotiations with state for a 'fairer presence' in the UK
  • What is a right to education?
  • Examining the resilience of UAE to decline in oil prices - the case of the insurance sector
  • Market synchronicity, impact of oil price volatility on stock market index

Free open access article available: "A structural equation model for analysing the determinants of crowdshipping adoption in the last-mile delivery within university cities"

The following paper, "A structural equation model for analysing the determinants of crowdshipping adoption in the last-mile delivery within university cities" (International Journal of Applied Decision Sciences 15(2) 2022), is freely available for download as an open access article.

It can be downloaded via the full-text link available here.

Research pick: The drug war on COVID-19 - "In silico study identifies RO 28-2653 as a novel drug against SARS-CoV2 mutant strains"

While vaccination and public education concerning the transmission of the coronavirus causing COVID-19 have been at the forefront of our response to the pandemic, there remains an urgent need for pharmaceutical interventions in cases where infection occurs and leads to severe morbidity with a significant risk of death. New work in the International Journal of Computational Biology and Drug Design has focused on three protein targets in the body that are thought to be critical to the propagation of the virus in the body following infection and lead to symptoms.

COVID-19 drug candidate Ro 28-2653, structure via PubChem

According to Srija Mukherjee and Santanu Paul of the Laboratory of Cell and Molecular Biology at the University of Calcutta, India, angiotensin-converting enzyme-2 receptor (ACE-2) represents a promising target for small molecule pharmaceuticals. SARS-CoV2 enters human cells via the ACE-2 receptor located in the membrane of lungs, arteries, kidneys, and intestine. As such, a small molecule that selectively targets this protein could be used to reduce the interaction of the virus with those proteins and so impede its cycle of infection to replication.

The team has turned to a computer program that has a model of the protein target. Molecular structures for the drug candidates are then matched to the docking site in the protein model to determine how well they might fit the site and how well they bind to it. This kind of in silico screening of drug molecules allows the team to quickly determine which of ten candidates might be worth pursuing in experiments that would be carried out in the laboratory in vitro and then any that prove useful in those tests would be moved to an animal model for in vivo assessment.

The primary benefit of in silico tests being that any candidates that look very unlikely to dock well with the target protein can be discarded and time and resources not wasted on in vitro and in vivo experiments that would most likely reach a dead-end.

As such, the team has tested ten drug candidates against the target protein models in silico. These drugs are Hydralazine, Fostemsavir, Trandolapril, Triamterene, Isuprel, Albuterol, Benadryl, Ro 28-2653, Theophylline, and Osimertinib mesylate. They determined that a molecule known as Ro 28-2653 has the greatest promise in the treatment of COVID-19. This compound, which has the chemical name 5-biphenyl-4-yl-5-[4-(-nitro-phenyl)-piperazin-1-yl]-pyrimidine-2,4,6-trione, is already known as a drug molecule and has been tested as an inhibitor of a type of protein involved in the growth of blood vessels in cancerous tumours.

“Our study shows that Ro 28-2653 can be a potent inhibitor against COVID-19,” the team writes. They point out that the drug is poorly soluble in water and so would need a carrier, such as the ring-shaped “starch” molecule cyclodextrin, to allow it to be taken by mouth. However, the drug has an important advantage in that it has a long half-life in the body once absorbed and so would hopefully remain active against the virus for a significant length of time. Indeed, because it targets a protein in the body, it should be active against any current or novel strain of the coronavirus.

The next step will be to take the in silico experiments to the in vitro level to see whether the drug works in the laboratory against the target protein.

Mukherjee, S. and Paul, S. (2021) ‘In silico study identifies RO 28-2653 as a novel drug against SARS-CoV2 mutant strains’, Int. J. Computational Biology and Drug Design, Vol. 14, No. 6, pp.457–480.

22 March 2022

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Business Excellence

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Business Excellence are now available here for free:
  • Does customer satisfaction exist in purchasing and usage of electronic home appliances in Bangladesh through interaction effects of social media?
  • Gender-based behavioural segmenting of the cellphone youth market
  • Factors propelling the use of Islamic banking services: the moderating role of customer intimacy
  • Perceived awareness and practised level of soft skills among personnel in the telecoms industry of Bangladesh
  • A systematic review of empirical studies pertaining to Lean, Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma quality improvement methodologies in paediatrics
  • Factors affecting the profitability of Indian listed firms: a panel data approach

Special issue published: "Signal and Information Processing in Sensor and Transducer Systems"

International Journal of Computer Applications in Technology 67(2/3) 2021

  • Multi-sensor temperature and humidity control system of wine cellar based on cooperative control of intelligent vehicle and UAV
  • Identification of Hammerstein-Wiener non-linear dynamic models using conjugate gradient-based iterative algorithm
  • Local track to detect for video object detection
  • Recursive identification of state space systems with coloured process noise and measurement noise
  • Distributed fusion algorithm based on maximum internal ellipsoid mechanism
  • Instantaneous frequency enhanced peak detection for sugarcane seed cutting
  • Simple interpolation algorithm and its application in power parameter estimation
  • Feature matching for multi-beam sonar image sequence using KD-Tree and KNN search
  • A study on ultrasonic process tomography for dispersed small particle system visualisation
  • Life-threatening arrhythmias recognition by pulse-to-pulse intervals analysis
  • A novel chaotic grey wolf optimisation for high-dimensional and numerical optimisation
  • A model predictive control strategy for field-circuit coupled model of PMSM
  • Fast position tracking control of PMSM under high frequency and variable load
  • Gradient iterative-based kernel method for exponential autoregressive models
  • A combined solution for flexible control of poultry houses
  • New media art design in commercial public space
  • Ontology-based data integration for the Internet of Things in a scientific software ecosystem
  • A chaos-enhanced accelerated PSO algorithm in reliable tracking of mobile objects
  • A vision of 6G: technology trends, potential applications, challenges and future roadmap
  • A neural adaptive level set method for wildland forest fire tracking

Research pick: Deep learning COVID-19 diagnosis - "Detection of COVID-19 virus using deep learning"

COVID-19 remains a significant challenge the world over. Research in the International Journal of Computational Biology and Drug Design, discusses how X-ray images and CT (computerised tomography) scans can reveal much about the effects of the disease on a patient’s lungs. However, the use of convolutional neural networks (CNN) can now be used to improve detection of the disease.

The standard tests for COVID-19 with which the general public have become rather familiar during the last two years – the so-called lateral flow antigen tests (LFT) and reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests – have many several pros and cons. The LFT system was quickly developed into a portable test, not dissimilar to a pregnancy test kit.

LFTs have been made widely available to the public in many parts of the world and can be carried out at home quickly and easily. They allow anyone to determine whether or not they are infectious regardless of whether or not they have COVID-19 symptoms. While the LFTs are simple to use they can be prone to false negatives depending on how well the preparation is carried out and very rarely they can give a false positive. The PCR tests, on the other hand, are always carried out in a laboratory by trained professionals. PCR is more reliable than the LFT although can also susceptible to problems when an untrained individual carries out sample acquisition. However, PCR tests are known to give a fair proportion of false positives, which are not commonly seen with LFTs.

Either way, it is critical for healthcare professionals, treating patients with suspect COVID-19, to have a definitive diagnosis of the disease rather than relying on tests that have fairly wide error margins. X-ray images and CT scans could offer such a definitive diagnosis in the clinical context identifying the presence of patchy infiltrates or opacities that are associated with pneumonia caused by the virus. An automated approach to analysing such images could speed up the diagnostic process and preclude false positives and negatives with these diagnostics.

Kewal Mehta, Hritik Patel, Vraj Patel, and Ankit K. Sharma of the Instrumentation and Control Engineering Department at Nirma University in Gujarat, India, implemented and compared several CNN architectures, including VGG16, ResNet-50, Inception-v3, DenseNet 201, Xception, and InceptionResnet-v2 to determine which if any can give a solid diagnosis. The DenseNet 201 CNN architecture proved to be the most effective at identifying COVID-19 and excluding other conditions which may present with similar symptoms, including tuberculosis, pneumonia, and lung cancer.

Mehta, K., Patel, H., Patel, V. and Sharma, A.K. (2021) ‘Detection of COVID-19 virus using deep learning’, Int. J. Computational Biology and Drug Design, Vol. 14, No. 6, pp.429–446.

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Operational Research

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Operational Research are now available here for free:
  • The EOQ model with items of imperfect quality and replenishment from different suppliers
  • Optimisation approach to solve the truck loading and delivery problem at long haul distances with heterogeneous products and fleet
  • A methodology to surface aspects of organisational culture to facilitate lean implementation within SMEs
  • A model for optimal allocation of human resources based on the operational performance of organisational units by multi-agent systems
  • Stationary distribution of an infinite-buffer batch-arrival and batch-service queue with random serving capacity and batch-size-dependent service

21 March 2022

Special issue published: "Connecting Creativity, Innovation and Sustainable Development in the Age of Disruptions"

  • Development of a recycling process for textiles made from PET, and proof of its environmental preference with life cycle assessment
  • Fostering the Sustainable Development Goals with technologies underpinned by frugal innovation
  • Team creativity: the interplay of shared mental models and the ideation process
  • Application and validation of a disruptive potential methodology for digital two-sided platforms - the case of marketplace lending in Germany
  • The impact of playful interventions for idea generation processes: a case study of an automotive producer
  • Sharing offline and for idealistic purposes in Germany
  • A quantitative analysis of the fostering factors of responsible innovation with a special focus on imagination and women in tech
  • Organising for AI-powered innovation through design: the case of Hitachi Vantara
  • How can makerspace contribute to training for complex technological innovation? - the case of aviation-based training for surgery robotics
Additional papers
  • R&D investment along the firm life-cycle: new evidence from high-tech industries
  • Income approach to technology valuation for innovations

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Energy Technology and Policy

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Energy Technology and Policy are now available here for free:
  • India's sustainable energy future and the challenges for optimised integration of variable energy sources
  • Harmonic analysis of thyristor controlled series capacitor in polluted Algerian network
  • Assessment, simulation and analysis of PV power generation for educational buildings of a rural women's university in India: a case study
  • An energy analysis of first to third-generation bioethanol production in Brazil: the potential for CO2 emissions
  • On-board generation of HHO gas with dry cell electrolyser and its applications: a review
  • Energy and CO2 emissions in the Gulf Cooperation Council region

Free open access article available: "The economic and institutional determinants in the international delocalisation of Italian companies"

The following paper, "The economic and institutional determinants in the international delocalisation of Italian companies" (International Journal of Trade and Global Markets 15(2) 2022), is freely available for download as an open access article.

It can be downloaded via the full-text link available here.

Research pick: Your life out of their hands - "Big data, artificial intelligence and epidemic disasters. A primary structured literature review"

“Big data” and “artificial intelligence” are two perhaps two of the most frequently used phrases in the search for technological solutions to human problems. In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the tools and techniques have been applied widely and bring with them pros and cons. A literature review in the International Journal of Applied Decision Sciences has looked at exactly what role smart technologies can play in medicine faced with a global epidemic disaster.

The primary structured literature review by Rosa Lombardi of Sapienza University of Rome, Raffaele Trequattrini and Benedetta Cuozzo of the University of Cassino and Southern Lazio, and Alberto Manzari of the University of Bari Aldo Moro, Italy, stretch their review of smart technologies and epidemics back through two decades, well before the current pandemic.

“The role of smart technologies and particularly big data and artificial intelligence is useful in tracking, preventing and managing the emergency by organisations, institutions and policymakers,” the team writes. However, they add that the decision-making processes taken out of the hands of healthcare workers may well come at a price. The automation of medical decisions might remove the doctor’s primary role and without the appropriate checks and balances could lead to misdiagnosis of patients and inappropriate prescribing.

There is thus a pressing need, as we come to rely more and more on big data and artificial intelligence, to put in place safeguards for public health, economical systems, and societal wealth. The basic purpose of these safeguards would be to protect patients, they would ensure medical integrity, privacy, and security, but also extend to protect healthcare workers themselves and to preclude the errant application of results from smart technologies that would be detrimental. Also, the safeguards would help to ensure that money and resources are not wasted on smart technologies when human intervention would be the most appropriate option at any decision point in the healthcare process.

Lombardi, R., Trequattrini, R., Cuozzo, B. and Manzari, A. (2022) ‘Big data, artificial intelligence and epidemic disasters. A primary structured literature review’, Int. J. Applied Decision Sciences, Vol. 15, No. 2, pp.156–180.

18 March 2022

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Data Analysis Techniques and Strategies

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Data Analysis Techniques and Strategies are now available here for free:
  • Combining planning and learning for context aware service composition
  • Road signs recognition: state-of-the-art and perspectives
  • Towards knowledge warehousing: application to smart housing
  • Improving social media engagements on paid and non-paid advertisements: a data mining approach
  • Evaluating information criteria in latent class analysis: application to identify classes of breast cancer dataset
  • Sentiment classification of review data using sentence significance score optimisation
  • Semantic integration of traditional and heterogeneous data sources (UML, XML and RDB) in OWL2 triplestore
  • Bayesian consensus clustering with LIME for security in big data
  • Efficient data clustering algorithm designed using a heuristic approach

Special issue published: "Optimisation Models in an Uncertain World"

International Journal of Operational Research 43(1/2) 2022

  • Stochastic goal programming and metaheuristics for the master surgical scheduling problem
  • An optimisation and simulation hybrid approach for maternal healthcare facility location-allocation in the Indian context
  • A tri-level mixed-integer program for the optimal fortification of a rail intermodal terminal network
  • Comparison of platoon formations using departure time coordination heuristic
  • A lower bound competitive ratio for the online stochastic shortest path problem
  • Hybrid multi-objective evolutionary algorithm for solving RALB-II problem
  • Application of multi-objective probabilistic fractional programming problem in production planning
  • Optimisation of finite economic production quantity model under cloudy normalised triangular fuzzy number
  • A strategic donor-beneficiary assignment problem under supply and demand uncertainties
  • Informal-contract farming in an agriculture supply chain: a game-theoretic analysis
  • New class of optimal multiple stopping times problems

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Technology Management

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Technology Management are now available here for free:
  • Sources of innovation and the use of KIBS by manufacturing firms
  • Managing trust and control when offshoring information systems development projects by adjusting project goals
  • Product platform replacement: impact of performance objectives, innovation speed, and competition
  • Understanding outsourcing strategy within the intellectual property industry - a proposed typology
  • Artificial intelligence and business applications, an introduction

Research pick: Recycling synthetic textiles - "Development of a recycling process for textiles made from PET, and proof of its environmental preference with life cycle assessment"

A new approach to recycling textiles made from polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is discussed in the International Journal of Technology Management and demonstrates environmental benefits in terms of life cycle assessment.

Lynn Luedemann, Andreas Felber, and Marcus Golder of the Institute of Materials Handling, Conveying and Plastics Engineering at Chemnitz University of Technology in Chemnitz, Germany, point out that recycling is an important part of efforts to reduce our carbon footprint as well as avoiding pollution. Indeed, there is a rather pressing need to ensure that materials, such as plastics, manufactured from petrochemicals are not simply incinerated, dumped, sent to landfill at end of life nor ended up fragmented and destined for the oceans. There are multiple pollution issues such as climate change and microplastic waste in our ecosystems to consider.

PET is mainly used in the manufacture of textile fibres, which represents almost two-thirds of use whereas bottles account for just under a third of applications of this plastic. While, different recycling processes exist for PET bottles and other containers, there is no straightforward method for recycling PET fibres.

The Chemnitz team has developed an approach to recycling PET fibres from textiles that can offer a 60 percent improvement on environmental impact of these materials at end of life. Of course, the recycling process must offset the energy, materials, and other resource costs to represent a sustainable approach to recycling and the team has now demonstrated proof of principle in this regard.

Given that half of all the world’s clothing is made from polyester, amounting to more than 100 million tons every year, this could represent a significant step towards reducing the carbon footprint and waste stream. It will also have an impact on reducing our dependency on limited supplies of petrochemical feedstock. Indeed, the team’s calculations show that the biggest environmental and sustainability impact of their project will be in the savings on raw materials offered by the recycling process.

However, the team offers a word of caution as concerns remain if we continue in our seemingly endless dependency on synthetic fibres. Recycled synthetic fibres might offer considerable savings on resources but still have a greater environmental impact than natural fibres obtained from hemp, wool, and cotton. There are asymmetries to in how we evaluate products when comparing textiles, their uses, the waste they generate, and their recycling. Recycling is a critical part of moving towards a sustainable future, but it is just one part of a much bigger picture and we are yet to paint that picture clearly.

Luedemann, L., Felber, A. and Golder, M. (2022) ‘Development of a recycling process for textiles made from PET, and proof of its environmental preference with life cycle assessment’, Int. J. Technology Management, Vol. 88, Nos. 2/3/4, pp.134–154.

17 March 2022

Special issue published: "Green, Innovative and Transformational Entrepreneurship: Possibilities for Leapfrogging and Inclusive Growth in Middle and Low-Income Economies"

International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation and Development 14(1/2) 2022

  • The characteristics of a green, innovative and transformational entrepreneur: an example of transformative entrepreneurship in an efficiency-driven economy
  • Revisiting innovation practices in subsistence farming: the net effects of land management, pesticide, herbicide and fungicide practices on expected crop harvest in Ethiopia
  • Ecosystems of green entrepreneurship in perspective: evidence from Brazil
  • Inclusion of universities, enterprises, and regions of Kazakhstan in the process of technological upgrading of the mining industry: a triple helix approach
  • Manufacturing firms and entrepreneurial dynamics in less developed economies: Kosovo in comparative perspective
  • A bibliometric analysis of entrepreneurship research in Iran
  • Environmental entrepreneurship and inclusive growth: a three-fold approach to analysis
  • Conceptualising the transformational power of entrepreneurship from an entrepreneurial ecosystems perspective focusing on environmentally and socially inclusive economic growth

International Journal of Powertrains indexed by Ei Compendex

Founded in 2010, the International Journal of Powertrains is a unique international academic journal in the field of vehicle engineering that provides regular publications on the research progress of various modern vehicle powertrain and propulsion technologies and related areas. IJPT aims to build a world-class platform for the global vehicular powertrain community, to provide a globally unified channel for research results in powertrain and propulsion technologies, and to promote interdisciplinary integration, information exchange and sharing.

To facilitate more effective communications, IJPT supports two international powertrain conferences, held in the UK and China in alternating years. IJPT has become one of the main publications in the important international forum of vehicle powertrains. It has formed a unique DNA that distinguishes itself from other journals in the automotive field, and has been increasingly recognised by the global automotive industry.

We are pleased to announce that IJPT has been officially indexed by the World Engineering Digest Ei Compendex since January 2022. This marks a new milestone after the journal was included in SCOPUS, the world's largest abstracts and citation database, in 2017, indicating that IJPT has entered a new development period. It is expected that, with the strong support of international colleagues, IJPT will become an SCI journal in the near future.

The continuing development of IJPT is oriented towards the extremely important and wide-ranging field of green transportation technologies, which are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving the energy efficiency of transportation systems to serve the overall goal of achieving carbon neutrality. The journal will continue to have a laser focus on technological developments and progress in vehicles and powertrains. IJPT will continue to raise the quality of published papers, the speed and quantity of reviews and publications, and strives to become one of the most influential journals in the fields of vehicles and powertrains.

Research pick: Mobile learning in a pandemic - "Unpacking mobile learning in higher vocational education during the COVID-19 pandemic"

Mobile learning became a mainstay of education during the lockdowns and self-isolation periods of the COVID-19 pandemic across the globe. There were many problems facing teachers and students alike during these times, but there were also some advantages of this enforced distance learning. There have been numerous studies that have looked at the pros and cons as well as predicting the long-term effects on education. One area that has not been addressed wholly is vocational education where the hands-on requirements of such courses are perhaps not served well by remote, mobile teaching and learning methods.

Work in the International Journal of Mobile Communications, describes the results of a collaboration between researchers in China and the USA looking at the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on vocational learning in higher education. Zheng Li and A.Y.M. Atiquil Islam of East China Normal University in Shanghai, China and Jonathan Michael Spector of the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas, USA, have looked at the acceptance and use of technology in this context. They surveyed 900 students on vocational higher education courses in China and analysed their responses to detect patterns and trends.

Fundamentally, the research showed that self-efficacy is important in mobile learning as are acceptance and effective use of the technology itself. Moreover, self-efficacy directly correlated with the effort and performance expectancies, social influence, and facilitating condition among the students.

The team reports that their study offers suggestions for government, higher vocational colleges and learning platform development enterprises. These suggestions are aimed at enhancing student acceptance of mobile learning. In particular, the team suggests that developers should focus on content quality in their mobile learning platforms, while government and schools should focus on the optimization of the mobile learning environment in terms of both hardware and promotion of this approach to learning.

Li, Z., Islam, A.Y.M.A. and Spector, J.M. (2022) ‘Unpacking mobile learning in higher vocational education during the COVID-19 pandemic’, Int. J. Mobile Communications, Vol. 20, No. 2, pp.129–149.

Special issue published: "Advances in Technology Innovations and Systems Engineering"

International Journal of System of Systems Engineering 11(3/4) 2021

  • Fog and edge computing simulators systems: research challenges and an overview
  • Effective prediction of bitcoin price using wolf search algorithm and bidirectional LSTM on internet of things data
  • An efficient vote casting system with Aadhar verification through blockchain
  • Design of energy and EDP efficient 1-bit full subtractor based divider circuits for computing systems
  • Modelling higher education environment based on knowledge system transfer between instructor and learners using genetic algorithm
  • An empirical hybrid DBN-EL system model for stock market prediction with big data
  • Quantify and alleviate OAuth approach token system exploiting by conspiracy lattice
  • Graph classification system using normalised graph convolutional networks
  • Performance analysis of hybrid classification system model for big data stream using internet of things
  • VLSI system architecture optimisation for DLMS adaptive filter using PPG based multiplier
  • Queueing network model with jockeying to reduce the waiting time in the airport
  • Resolving software interoperability issues of unsigned number and date-time precision using JADE framework system
  • Challenges in implementing video deduplication in cloud storage system
  • Analysis of text classification methods with large volume of tweets using deep learning
  • A novel IPSO technique for path navigation and obstacle avoidance

16 March 2022

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation and Development

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation and Development are now available here for free:
  • Financial technology revolution and banks' information and communication technology investment: evidence from an emerging economy
  • Transition or change? The morphosis of One Belt One Road initiatives in Pakistan: a study on the challenges, prospects and outcomes of the China-Pakistan economic corridor
  • Determinants of capacity utilisation by firms in developing countries: evidence from Tunisia
  • Factors affecting technological learning through collaborations in developing countries: case study from the oil and gas sector

Special issue published: "Academic Entrepreneurship in an Open Innovation World: A Way to Overcome the Resources Shortage of Academic Spinoffs"

International Journal of Technology Management 88(1) 2022

  • Presenting a paradigmatic model for conceptualisation of open innovation ecosystem in start-ups using meta-synthesis approach
  • Innovative difference based on genetic distance model: an empirical analysis of technology innovation
  • Government support, different types of collaborative R&D input, and performance: evidence from China
  • From ecosystem to community. Combining entrepreneurship and university engagement in an open innovation perspective
  • Analysis of the survival determinants of university spin-offs in a cross-national sample

Research pick: Adaptive headlights

Driving at night brings its own risks when compared to daylight driving, not least when heading into a blind bend on an unlit road. Moreover, conventional headlights always face forward and so as one steers into such a bend there is a blind spot to the left or right until one has travelled through it. This is the underlying cause of many road traffic accidents, particularly those that involve obstacles in one’s lane that remain out of sight until it is too late for the driver to avoid them safely.

Adaptive headlight system

Research in the International Journal of Vehicle Safety, discusses a new approach to vehicle headlights that will allow them to turn with the steering into a bend in the road and so illuminate the path of travel directly rather than its periphery.

Mitchell Dsouza, Sunita Ugale, and Dinesh Chandwadkar of the K.K. Wagh Institute of Engineering Education and Research in Nashik, India, point out that adaptive headlight systems have been tested before. However, they have devised an electronic model of a new system that might be used for the development of a viable approach to improve road safety.

Throughout the history of motor vehicles, safety features have been devised and added ad hoc – from bumpers, crumple zones, and airbags to seatbelts, antilocking brakes, and shatterproof windscreens. But, headlights have remained stationary in many ways.

Despite the evolution of the lamps used in headlights and the reflector and focusing systems, little has been done to develop this critical component for the night driver. That said, some higher-end vehicles have side-directed cornering lights which are illuminated when the car is turning. Various patents have considered moving the focusing reflector to follow the turning curve of a vehicle as it travels around a bend in the road.

Dsouza, M., Ugale, S. and Chandwadkar, D. (2021) ‘Adaptive headlight system’, Int. J. Vehicle Safety, Vol. 12, No. 2, pp.109–117.

Free open access article available: "Unpacking mobile learning in higher vocational education during the COVID-19 pandemic"

The following paper, "Unpacking mobile learning in higher vocational education during the COVID-19 pandemic" (International Journal of Mobile Communications 20(2) 2022), is freely available for download as an open access article.

It can be downloaded via the full-text link available here.

15 March 2022

Special issue published: "Simple Mechanical Models for Unreinforced Historic Masonry Constructions – Part 1" (includes free open access article)

International Journal of Masonry Research and Innovation 6(4) 2021

  • Foreword: Safety and preservation of cultural heritage: to do or not to do?
  • Analytical modelling for the seismic assessment of pointed arches supported by buttresses
  • Experimental and numerical analysis of a scaled dry-joint arch on moving supports
  • Stability and load-bearing capacity assessment of a deformed multi-span masonry bridge using the PRD method [OPEN ACCESS]
  • A new membrane equilibrium solution for masonry railway bridges: the case study of Marsh Lane Bridge
  • Structural analysis of historical masonry churches: the case study of S. Giuseppe delle Scalze (Naples, Italy)
  • Considerations about the static response of masonry domes: a comparison between limit analysis and finite element method

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Grid and Utility Computing

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Grid and Utility Computing are now available here for free:
  • Robust and secure authentication protocol protecting privacy for roaming mobile user in global mobility networks
  • Big data analytics: an improved method for large-scale fabrics detection based on feature importance analysis from cascaded representation
  • BFO-based firefly algorithm for multi-objective optimal allocation of generation by integrating renewable energy sources
  • Towards automation of fibre to the home planning with consideration on OPTIC access network model
  • An old risk in the new era: SQL injection in cloud environment
  • Investigation of multi-objective optimisation techniques to minimise the localisation error in wireless sensor networks
  • Intrusion detection technique using Coarse Gaussian SVM
  • An integrated framework of generating quizzes based on linked data and its application on medical education field
  • A survey on resolving security issues in SaaS through software defined networks

Research pick: Blockchain blocks identity theft - "Securing personal identity using blockchain"

Blockchain technology is perhaps best known for its role in digital, or crypto, currencies. However, it is simply an immutable, electronic ledger and so can have other applications such as the writing and signing of smart contracts. New work in the International Journal of Critical Computer-Based Systems, shows how the blockchain might also be used as a secure identity system. Such a system coupled with the aforementioned smart contract could then be used in personal and business negotiations to ensure the privacy and validity of interested parties’ identities.

Mohith C. Shekar and H.L. Gururaj of the Department of CS&E at Vidyavardhaka College of Engineering in Mysuru, India, and Francesco Flammini of the Department of Innovative Technologies at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Southern Switzerland in Lugano, Switzerland, explain that, as it stands, the sharing of a trusted identity is complicated and prone to privacy and security breaches. There is no universal method for ensuring a person is who they say they are in a digital or online transaction and no universal way to protect the personal and private data that might be shared in such a transaction from malicious third parties.

Blockchain technology, the researchers explain, offers a credible and tamper-free way to share an identity between two legitimate parties. Moreover, by coupling this blockchain identity with a smart contract, it should also be possible to ensure that only the components of the person’s identity they wish to share are made available when the negotiating party inspects their blockchain identity. A public (encryption) key allows the user to share their identity but protects it from intruders. A blockchain identity might find immediate applications in banking, e-commerce, government and elections, employment and even in gaming, online dating, social media, and other common activities.

There are estimates that in some parts of the world identity theft as many as four in ten people have been victims of identity theft. The widespread adoption and acceptance of blockchain ID could help reduce the number of future victims. Blockchain ID could reduce the risk of information leaks, preclude theft of electronic records, allow identity information to be stored securely on digital devices such as smartphones, laptops, tablets, and wearable devices. It would also reduce the sharing of excessive or unnecessary information with organizations. Ultimately, we, as users, take back control of our identities in the digital world.

Shekar, M.C., Gururaj, H.L. and Flammini, F. (2022) ‘Securing personal identity using blockchain’, Int. J. Critical Computer-Based Systems, Vol. 10, No. 3, pp.248–267.

Special issue published: "Energy Use Efficiency"

International Journal of Global Energy Issues 44(2/3) 2022

  • An energy consumption calculation model of prefabricated building envelope system based on BIM technology
  • Building a prediction model of solar power generation based on improved Grey Markov Chain
  • Purification and recycling of municipal wastewater based on MBR process
  • Research on an optimisation control method of large-scale buildings energy saving based on particle swarm optimisation
  • A short-term prediction method of building energy consumption based on gradient progressive regression tree
  • Evaluation of energy utilisation efficiency of central air conditioning in large buildings based on entropy weight-cloud model
  • Collaborative design of large-scale building's energy saving structure based on green BIM concept
  • Velocity control method of water supply and drainage for multi-functional stadium based on predictive function algorithm
  • Real-time monitoring method for working state of decentralised municipal sewage treatment system
Additional paper
  • Impact of oil price fluctuations on food prices: fresh insight from asymmetric ARDL approach of co-integration

14 March 2022

Special issue published: "Smart Living Technology and AIoT Innovations"

International Journal of Grid and Utility Computing 13(1) 2022

  • Design and planning of urban ecological landscape using machine learning
  • Construction method of knowledge graph under machine learning
  • Application of de-noising automatic coding method in freight volume prediction under intelligent logistics
  • Analysis of electronic bill authentication and security storage performance utilising machine learning algorithm
  • Exploring the role of sports APP in (campus fitness) intelligent solutions using data fusion algorithm and internet of things
  • The use of deep learning and AIoT technology in loan word translation
  • Exploration of new community fitness mode using intelligent life technology and AIoT
  • Implementation of fitness and health management system utilising deep learning neural network and internet of things technology
  • The use of edge computing-based internet of things big data in the design of power intelligent management and control platform
  • Comparison of static and dynamic characteristics of electromagnetic bearing using machine learning algorithm
  • The use of intelligent remote monitoring system in ship energy efficiency management based on internet of things

Research pick: Watch with teacher - "Using cinematic gangsters, samurais and robots to teach economics through film"

The days of “chalk and talk” lectures are not yet ancient history, but teaching has adopted new paradigms in recent years. One of these is the use of cinematic output to teach principles in seemingly unrelated subjects. A paper in the International Journal of Pluralism and Economics Education focuses on a small group of films and a documentary to demonstrate how a teacher might extract pertinent concepts from the plot of such films, or movies, to expose their students to those concepts in an entertaining and informative manner.

Daniel Diaz Vidal and Robert Beekman of the John H. Sykes College of Business at the University of Tampa, Florida, USA, suggest education in economics is already using innovative and attractive approaches to teaching. Given the world of multimedia output, always-on communication devices, and social media, it is almost obligatory that teaching involve those aspects of the modern world. The wily teacher can use them intelligently and subtly to educate in memorable ways to the benefit of their students.

The team presents several movies and a documentary and offers economic theories and concepts that can be related to specific clips within those movies. The team has chosen the following as their exemplars: Wall-E (2008), The Last Samurai (2003), Boyz ‘n the Hood (1991), and American Gangster (2008). They also examine the first episode of the television series Altered Carbon (2019).

“The economics classroom has changed, and we live in a time in which an economics class session can be engaging, interactive and fun for both students and faculty,” the team writes, “We enjoy a vast supply of technology and educational resources at our disposal to be tapped by an instructor’s creativity and passion.” In this context, they offer the titles as useful examples of how teaching might evolve given the ease of access to movie and TV streaming and related services. The handful of examples they give are merely suggestions, there are many other movies and television programmes that offer lessons to be learned in economics and across other disciplines.

Vidal, D.D. and Beekman, R. (2021) ‘Using cinematic gangsters, samurais and robots to teach economics through film’, Int. J. Pluralism and Economics Education, Vol. 12, Nos. 3/4, pp.282–307.

11 March 2022

Research pick: Long-tail music recommendation - "Addressing long tail problem in music recommendation systems"

Music recommendation systems commonly offer users songs that others have enjoyed in the genres that the user requests. This can lead to popular songs becoming more popular. However, it neglects the less well-known songs, the long-tail songs that users may well enjoy just as much but have less chance of hearing because of the way the recommendation algorithms work.

New work in the International Journal of Computational Systems Engineering, offers an approach to a music recommendation system that neglects the popular in favour of the long-tail and so could open users to new music. M. Sunitha and T. Adilakshmi Vasavi of the College of Engineering in Hyderabad, India, have developed a multi-stage graph-based method and a K-nearest neighbours (KNN)-based method to identify long-tail songs and feed these new works to the system’s users.

Music recommendation systems have been developed to allow listeners to be offered content from huge digital libraries that might suit their tastes and preferences without any human intervention. Simpler systems are based on the prior classification of songs by artist, genre, and style and simply present seemingly related music to the listener. Other, more sophisticated systems, have subtler classifications and respond to the likes and dislikes of other users as well as the present user to find new material that the user might like; collaborative filtering. There are other mechanisms too and almost all of them will suffer from bias that might preclude the introduction of a little-known song to the user.

A recommendation system that can find music in the long-tail that a listener seeking novelty may not otherwise encounter would be a boon to those users bored with the same old popular artists and songs that can be heard endlessly across radio, television, cinema, and online. The long-tail approach, in some ways, mimics the discovery process of listening to an esoteric DJ on an obscure radio station and hearing one’s new, earworm or finding one’s new, favourite artist. The advantage is that one does not have to seek out that esoteric and obscure DJ nor be limited by the length of their show, there will be almost unlimited new, long-tail songs and artists to hear.

Sunitha, M. and Adilakshmi, T. (2021) ‘Addressing long tail problem in music recommendation systems’, Int. J. Computational Systems Engineering, Vol. 6, No. 5, pp.246–254.

Special issue published: "Rural-Urban Linkages in the Age of Urbanisation"

World Review of Science, Technology and Sustainable Development 18(2) 2022

  • The spatial dynamics of the Semarang-Surakarta development corridor: two young metropolitan cities of Central Java, Indonesia
  • Contemporary urban development of Yogyakarta municipality's peri-urban areas
  • Sociocultural pressure on cemeteries in Jakarta, Indonesia and its impacts
  • Rural livelihood resilience on multiple dimensions: a case study from selected coastal areas in Central Java
  • Rural planning within local development: Indonesian context
Additional paper
  • Proposal for revision of Brazilian resolution 687/15 to expand distributed generation through photovoltaic systems

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Information Technology and Management

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Information Technology and Management are now available here for free:
  • Performance analysis of iris biometric system using GKPCA and SVM
  • Promoting business-IT alignment through agent metaphor-based software technology
  • Mobile application for children to learn hadith: 'Hidup Cara Rasullullah'
  • Automation of smart monitoring for person localisation and alerting network
  • Frequency variations management in deregulated environment using intelligent controller
  • A review on feature selection methods for improving the performance of classification in educational data mining
  • An improved mean curvature-based bending model for cloth simulation
  • Classification of cricket videos using finite state machines
  • Congestion management with improved real power transfer using TCSC in 30 bus system
  • Automatic brain tumour detection using image processing and data mining techniques
  • Investigation and analysis on crowdsourcing for improving enterprise QoS
  • Assessing the impact of information technology on human resource practices: evidence from organisations in Ghana

10 March 2022

Special issue published: "Recent Advances in Intelligent Systems and Pattern Recognition"

International Journal of Computational Systems Engineering 6(5) 2021

  • Structural refinement of manually created Bayesian network for prostate cancer diagnosis
  • Selection of statistical wavelet features using a wrapper approach for electrical appliances identification based on a KNN classifier combined with voting rules method
  • Finger vein biometric scanner design using Raspberry Pi
  • Combination of a DAE-CNN and OC-SVDD for intrusion detection
  • Addressing long tail problem in music recommendation systems

Free open access article available: "'Are you having a laugh?': detecting humorous expressions on social media: an exploration of theory, current approaches and future work"

The following paper, "'Are you having a laugh?': detecting humorous expressions on social media: an exploration of theory, current approaches and future work" (International Journal of Information Technology and Management 21(1) 2022), is freely available for download as an open access article.

It can be downloaded via the full-text link available here.

Special issue published: "Impact of Emerging Technologies on Smart Governance Systems in Smart Cities" (includes free open access article)

International Journal of Information Technology and Management 21(1) 2022

  • Construction of an urban multi variable geospatial information integration model based on distributed artificial intelligence
  • Optimisation of cost accounting method for resource flow based on blockchain technology
  • The information association model of college students' archives based on a cloud computing management platform
  • Design of information push system for global tourist routes in eco-scenic spots based on GIS
  • Dynamic distribution and planning for traffic flow of the urban ecological road network based on blockchain technology
  • A multi-terminal pushing method for emergency information in a smart city based on deep learning
  • Intelligent control method of accounting information based on multi-objective evolution
Additional paper
  • 'Are you having a laugh?': detecting humorous expressions on social media: an exploration of theory, current approaches and future work [OPEN ACCESS]

Research pick: "‘Are you having a laugh?’: detecting humorous expressions on social media: an exploration of theory, current approaches and future work’"

Humorous content underpins much of the material that goes “viral” online, whether across social media, on websites, or even in text messages. Despite the important part it plays in many people’s lives there is scant research that has focused on humour in social media. New work in the International Journal of Information Technology and Management looks to remedy that situation.

Suzanne Elayan, Martin Sykora, Thomas W. Jackson, and Ejovwoke Onojeharho of the Centre for Information Management at Loughborough University, UK, suggest that understanding humourous content and the dynamics it follows on social media could help improve applications that carry out sentiment analysis of online content. The team has focused on the heterogeneous nature of humour on the well-known and popular microblogging platform, Twitter. Specifically, whereas the earlier work that does exist concentrates on English language humour, the present study investigates Arabic content. In this context, the team suggests that “Automated humour detection in its own right has potential in understanding public reactions and should be explored in future studies.”

While there is growing evidence from the animal kingdom that other species might understand and react to comical situations, the notion of humour, seems at its deepest levels to be a human trait with many social, psychological, and biological benefits. It is a trait that has provided entertainment, social coherence, and release to humanity for thousands of years. We can consider jokes, anecdotes, wordplay and puns, irony, and schadenfreude/sarcasm/mockery to be the basic categories of humour. In the era of social media, we now have at our fingertips a way to share a joke with millions, if not billions of people almost instantaneously.

Of course, everyone’s sense of humour differs and there are some people who may find a particular piece of humour to be side-splittingly hilarious while another might perceive the same joke as unfunny, or worse, highly offensive and upsetting. It is the subjective nature and the many unknown factors surrounding humour and its effects that have perhaps meant that little solid research has been undertaken that gives us solid results about the topic. The team’s review of the literature nevertheless points to a way to develop tools that might be able to extract humourous sentiment from given content in an automated manner that would be useful to researchers in sociology and psychology as well as more broadly the study of social media itself.

“It is hoped that this paper will aid in establishing further research activities in this exciting and interesting field, helping to lead this new stream of research,” the team concludes.

Elayan, S., Sykora, M., Jackson, T.W. and Onojeharho, E. (2022) ‘‘Are you having a laugh?’: detecting humorous expressions on social media: an exploration of theory, current approaches and future work’, Int. J. Information Technology and Management, Vol. 21, No. 1, pp.115–137

Free open access article available: "The external environment dynamics analysis towards competitive advantage and company performance: the case of manufacture industry in Indonesia"

The following paper, "The external environment dynamics analysis towards competitive advantage and company performance: the case of manufacture industry in Indonesia" (International Journal of Productivity and Quality Management 35(2) 2022), is freely available for download as an open access article.

It can be downloaded via the full-text link available here.

9 March 2022

Free sample articles newly available from Progress in Industrial Ecology, An International Journal

The following sample articles from the Progress in Industrial Ecology, An International Journal are now available here for free:
  • Modelling a decision-making network for sustainable manufacturing strategy
  • Management of material and product circularity potential as an approach to operationalise circular economy
  • Preparation of nanocompounds materials by combustion method using urea as fuel
  • 3D image reconstruction from its 2D projection - a simulation study
  • Preparation and study of a superconducting composite based on superconducting ceramic system

Special issue published: "Emerging Technologies in Education"

International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning 32(1) 2022

  • Analysis and research on the integrated English teaching effectiveness of internet of things based on stochastic forest algorithm
  • Study on the evaluation method of students' English classroom performance based on big data analysis
  • The application of virtual reality technology in the efficiency optimisation of students' online interactive learning
  • Research on the teaching mode of improving the learning efficiency of university students based on VR technology
  • Study on the design of interactive distance multimedia teaching system based on VR technology
  • Interactive sharing of fragmented English learning resources based on internet of things
  • Research on the teaching mode of university virtual laboratory based on component technology
  • An effectiveness model of vocational education mode reform based on data mining

Research pick: Blockchain contracts to build botnets - "Botract: abusing smart contracts and blockchain for botnet command and control"

Blockchain is a decentralised ledger technology that secures the integrity of transactions through digital signatures and will be familiar to anyone who has investigated digital or “crypto” currencies. The technology has many more putative applications than crypto currencies, however, and has been discussed in the context of secure, digital voting and governance systems and corporate contracts. As with any technology, there are ways it might be abused for nefarious purposes such as the spreading and implementation of malware.

Commonly, networks of interconnected computers, botnets, surreptitiously recruit thousands of computers often through phishing and malware attacks for the benefit of a central entity, the bot commander. The commander might then use the botnet to carry out distributed denial of service attacks (DDoS) on other systems with malicious intent. A botnet might also be used to send spam, host criminal websites, and perform other activities, such as spreading yet more malware and implementing phishing attacks. The key point, however, is that security experts can often identify botnet activity through the internet addresses of the central command machine or simply the activity of the bots within the network.

A new study in the International Journal of Information and Computer Security, shows how blockchain technology and smart contracts might be exploited to create a distributed network of computers. Such a network, lacking a central server, could be used to build a botnet, a system for attacking and hacking other online resources for criminal gain or other malicious purposes.

The proof of principle offered by Omar Alibrahim of Kuwait University in Safat, Kuwait and Majid Malaika of omProtect LLC in Washington DC, USA, should offer fair warning to those running potentially vulnerable computer systems to be on the alert from a new type of attack from bot contracts, “botracts”. They point out that commands added into a blockchain-based smart contract cannot be removed nor modified making a botract highly resilient to any attempt to disarm it by security experts.

The very nature of blockchain technology, being self-sustaining, distributed, and immutable is what makes it vulnerable to this newly demonstrated exploit. It is the design issues of the underlying technology for deploying smart contracts – implicit end-user trust, lack of code scrutiny, and absence of governance – that are its advantages in legitimate use that might now be exploited for criminal and malicious purposes with unqualified anonymity.

In the short-term, the blockchain community must quickly develop tactical defences against botracts, now that they have been described, but without resorting to expensive operations. In the long-term, the community needs to undertake a fundamental rethink and redesign of the blockchain with security in mind.

Alibrahim, O. and Malaika, M. (2022) ‘Botract: abusing smart contracts and blockchain for botnet command and control’, Int. J. Information and Computer Security, Vol. 17, Nos. 1/2, pp.147–163.

Free open access article available: "Multimedia security and privacy protection in the internet of things: research developments and challenges"

The following paper, "Multimedia security and privacy protection in the internet of things: research developments and challenges" (International Journal of Multimedia Intelligence and Security 4(1) 2022), is freely available for download as an open access article.

It can be downloaded via the full-text link available here.

8 March 2022

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Human Resources Development and Management

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Human Resources Development and Management are now available here for free:
  • Comparison of the analytic hierarchy process and the analytic network process in human resource management
  • The importance of organisational justice on schedule satisfaction: a study of Latin American call centre employees
  • Service-profit chain: literature review and recommendations for future research within the restaurant industry
  • Professional training in the context of the diversity of workplaces: project teams and non-standard forms of employment
  • A case study of strategic human resource management: implementation levels and communication

Free open access article available: "How does spectator marketing in women's leagues differ from that in men's leagues?"

The following paper, "How does spectator marketing in women's leagues differ from that in men's leagues?" (International Journal of Sport Management and Marketing 22(1/2) 2022), is freely available for download as an open access article.

It can be downloaded via the full-text link available here.

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Information and Computer Security

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Information and Computer Security are now available here for free:
  • A facial expression recognition model using hybrid feature selection and support vector machines
  • Secure energy efficient network priority routing protocol for effective data collection and key management in dynamic WSNs
  • Video watermarking using neural networks
  • A novel energy efficient routing algorithm for MPLS-MANET using fuzzy logic controller
  • A low area VLSI implementation of extended tiny encryption algorithm using Lorenz chaotic system

Research pick: Manipulation, that’s the name of the game - "An entity matching-based image topic verification framework for online fact-checking"

With the growth of 24-hour connectivity, always-on news, and social media we have access to more instantaneous information than at any time in history. Unfortunately, with the news comes “fake news”. We must rage a constant battle against the disinformation, misinformation, propaganda, and lies with which we are faced each day in our timelines. New research published in the International Journal of Multimedia Intelligence and Security, addresses one aspect of this problem – the manipulated image.

Xichen Zhang, Sajjad Dadkhah, Samaneh Mahdavifar, Rongxing Lu, and Ali A. Ghorbani of the Faculty of Computer Science, Canadian Institute for Cybersecurity at the University of New Brunswick, in Fredericton, Canada, have developed a framework that uses entity matching to analyse a suspect image and determine whether it can be verified as authentic.

The team suggests that manipulated images represent fertile ground for sowing fake news and as such must be weeded out if we are to fact check sources and validate the news that reaches us from so many disparate media. It is well known that social media users share and engage more with visual content. Moreover, it is certainly true that a picture can paint a thousand words and as such the fake news that begins with a manipulated or inappropriate image can affect our perception summarily in ways that textual content might not.

Conventionally, fact-checkers can often determine the veracity of a news item by validating the creator, the source, and evaluating the content and stance. However, a fake image associated with even the most effectively camouflaged fake news would be immediately obvious to an expert. However, there are so many images to fact check that an automated algorithmic approach has to be the way forward at least in the initial validation steps.

The new framework developed by the UNB team can retrieve valuable information and knowledge related to an image. Moreover, their statistical analysis shows the framework can offer 86 per cent accuracy. This number might well be improved significantly, but offers a solid starting point from which fake images might be weeded out. Moreover, coupled with tools that allow the textual content to be analysed in parallel, it might be possible to achieve much greater accuracy in classifying any given item and its associated images very quickly.

“Our framework is practical and effective in many different application scenarios, such as image information retrieval, image caption generation, image geo-location analysis, image tagging, stance detection between image and text content, and online image fact-checking,” the team writes.

Zhang, X., Dadkhah, S., Mahdavifar, S., Lu, R. and Ghorbani, A.A. (2022) ‘An entity matching-based image topic verification framework for online fact-checking’, Int. J. Multimedia Intelligence and Security, Vol. 4, No. 1, pp.65–85.