31 May 2024

Research pick: Shore thing – coastal costs of climate change - "Studies of environmental coastal impacts in small islands: a review"

A review in the International Journal of Environment and Pollution has looked at research into the impact of climate change on the coastal environments of small islands. The study covers the literature from 1985 to 2021, and offers new insights into the deleterious effects of human activities on small island coasts. Lorenzo Carlos Quesada-Ruiz of the University of Seville and Carolina Peña-Alonso of the Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain, examined more than 500 papers, which focused broadly on North Atlantic and North Pacific islands and highlighted the effects of various human activities on ecosystem services.

Human actions, including climate change, environmental policy, and tourism, have been identified as important factors that are detrimentally affecting delicate ecosystems. Factors such as increasing populations, technological advancements, and an increase in tourist activities have put increased pressure on small island coastal regions in many different ways. This pressure has disrupted ecosystem balances and led to increased vulnerability to natural disasters and climate extremes.

In addition, the review shows that of major concern are habitat loss, biodiversity decline, shoreline alterations, and landscape degradation. Activities like maritime trade, fishing, agriculture, urbanization, and infrastructure development have exacerbated the problems and pose ongoing threats to both ecosystems and local populations. Moreover, the looming threat of climate change, with its projections of sea level rise and more frequent extreme storm events, will further compound the vulnerabilities, particularly for islands that have dense coastal populations.

In their review, Quesada-Ruiz and Peña-Alonso emphasize the importance of understanding the complex interactions between human activities and coastal ecosystems with a view to developing effective mitigation strategies to manage the worst effects.

For some areas, marine litter, extractive activities, and the lack of management of protected areas, remain underexplored in the research literature. The team points out that there are also methodological gaps, including limited integration of Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) and sparse utilization of data-driven models. This, their review suggests, highlights the need for more comprehensive approaches to coastal environmental research.

Quesada-Ruiz, L.C. and Peña-Alonso, C. (2023) ‘Studies of environmental coastal impacts in small islands: a review’, Int. J. Environment and Pollution, Vol. 72, Nos. 2/3/4, pp.99–128.

30 May 2024

Research pick: Double-oh yes! - "The registration of an iconic movie theme as a trade mark: only ‘diamonds are forever’"

The year 2022 saw the death of composer Monty Norman, perhaps best known for the iconic James Bond theme. 2022 also marked the 60th anniversary of the James Bond film franchise itself with Dr No being the first in a long list of films to use Norman’s psychedelic big band sound with the twangy guitar. That same year also saw a legal precedent being set by the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) in the world of trademarks. US company Danjaq LLC which holds the copyright for the James Bond film franchise successful registered a segment of the James Bond theme as a trademark.

This trademark decision reflects the evolving nature of intellectual property protection, especially concerning audio branding in the film industry. By securing a trademark for this well-known portion of the original James Bond theme, Danjaq LLC, has shown just how important music and sounds can be for branding.

Writing in the International Journal of Intellectual Property Management, Alexandros Antoniou of Essex Law School at the University of Essex in Colchester, UK discusses the intricacies of trademark law and how this particular case played out, legally speaking. He points out that for a sound to qualify as a trademark, it must be distinctive enough that the average consumer associates it exclusively with a particular source. Common sounds, such as the two-tone chime of a doorbell or the sound of a cuckoo clock, usually do not reach this legal threshold and so cannot be trademarked. Conversely, aural themes that much longer are usually protected by copyright as creative works. The familiar snippet of the James Bond theme associated with the fictional spy with the licence to kill is recognised around the world and has a strong association with the film franchise. It is sufficiently long as to be non-trivial and short enough to meet the criteria of a sonic trademark.

Of course, a creative work, even rendered as a snippet, is also covered by copyright law so that nobody can use said work without the appropriate permissions from the holder of the copyright. The dual protection of the James Bond theme through both copyright and trademark law gives the owners of this intellectual property even greater advantages. Copyright protects the original creative work, granting exclusive rights to the creator for a limited period—the creator’s life plus 70 years. The trademark protection can be renewed indefinitely, potentially allowing perpetual control over this musical snippet. The owner’s of the film franchise can therefore safeguard their sonic identity against unauthorized use and exploit it for profit or other ends almost in perpetuity with legal protection with a view to making a killing. The legal spectre suggests that it’s not only diamonds that are forever, after all.

However, adds Antoniou, the overlap of trademark and copyright protections raises important questions about the balance between protecting intellectual property and fostering cultural innovation. Copyright law aims to promote creativity by eventually releasing works into the public domain, while trademark law can extend protection indefinitely, potentially limiting access to cultural works. The legal decision regarding the James Bond theme highlights the need for careful regulation to prevent the abuse of trademark rights, ensuring they do not stifle creativity and innovation.

Antoniou, A. (2024) ‘The registration of an iconic movie theme as a trade mark: only ‘diamonds are forever’’, Int. J. Intellectual Property Management, Vol. 14, No. 3, pp.300–308.

29 May 2024

Research pick: Influencing the influencers - "Who influences the influencer – a network analytical study of an influencer’s peer-based importance"

A study in the International Journal of Electronic Marketing and Retailing has provided new insights into social media influencers, particularly focusing on those in the women’s fashion sector on the well-known image and video sharing platform Instagram. In a departure from the approach taken by earlier studies, Jens K. Perret of the International School of Management in Cologne, Germany, has used network statistics and centrality measures to establish a model of influencer importance within their network.

Perret analysed data from 255 influencers covering a four-year period. Influencers are loosely defined as individuals, or even companies, that have a significant online presence and influence on one or more social media platforms. They typically have a large number of followers and a high level of engagement with that audience in terms of their sharing of content and approval by their fans. Topics such as fashion, beauty, lifestyle, fitness, and gaming have many prominent influencers. Influencers often work with brands to promote products or services to their followers, and so can have an important effect on marketing strategies for companies.

The work has found four main factors contributing to an influencer’s significance: followers, reach, engagement rate, and posting frequency. Through regression analysis and artificial neural networks, Perret examined just how consistent these factors were in affecting the influencer’s relationships.

The practical implications of the work are that it offers a methodology for evaluating an influencer’s importance using readily available metrics. This could streamline the influencer selection process for companies seeking to recruit influencers for their marketing campaigns. It also provides solid evidence that could be used in fair compensation negotiations between companies and influencers.

While the study focused on Instagram, the same approach could work just as well with other social media platforms and even in other cultural contexts. This could open up the possibility of related research into social media dynamics and influencer marketing.

Perret, J.K. (2024) ‘Who influences the influencer – a network analytical study of an influencer’s peer-based importance’, Int. J. Electronic Marketing and Retailing, Vol. 15, No. 3, pp.370–392.

28 May 2024

Research pick: Hydrogen takeoff - "A steady-state model-based evaluation of performance characteristics and feasibility analysis of retrofit hydrogen-powered aircraft configurations"

As technologists search for approaches to reduce our global carbon footprint and stave off the worst ravages of climate change, they are turning to an old friend – hydrogen. The potential of hydrogen fuel cells for generating power is enormous although not without issues. Writing in the International Journal of Sustainable Aviation, a team from the UK and Romania discusses hydrogen-powered aircraft. The concept of replacing carbon-rich jet fuel with zero-carbon hydrogen is high on the agenda.

The team has compared the performance of a regional aircraft, the ATR 72-600, using three different propulsion systems: conventional jet fuel, direct hydrogen combustion, and hydrogen fuel cells. Bassam Rakhshani and Tony Leslie of the University of the West of Scotland in Paisley, UK, and Alexandru Stan of Premium Aerotec Ghimbav (Airbus) in Romania used Simulink, a computational tool, to model and analyse power requirements, fuel consumption, propulsion efficiency, and emissions.

The findings show that hydrogen propulsion, either through direct combustion in a jet engine or using fuel cells, reduces fuel mass significantly. Specifically, hydrogen fuel cells achieve a 50% reduction, and direct hydrogen combustion an 80% reduction compared to traditional jet fuel. This efficiency is attributed to hydrogen’s higher energy density when compared to conventional jet fuel. However, the researchers also found a significant drawback: the increased weight from hydrogen storage, which negatively impacts overall aircraft performance.

The aviation industry is estimated to contribute 2-3 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions, and that percentage is set to double by 2050. There thus remains an urgent need to make aviation more sustainable. As it stands, hydrogen propulsion, alongside electric propulsion, could be the answer, but new technology is needed to overcome that storage weight-gain problem in order to achieve near-zero aircraft carbon emissions.

The transition to hydrogen-powered aircraft has other challenges: shorter operational ranges with current technology, lower passenger capacity, higher operational costs, and the need for new refuelling infrastructure. There are also the safety issues to consider. Nevertheless, the companies are looking at how they might retrofit their aircraft. It is possible that the development of novel storage systems might address some of these issues.

Rakhshani, B., Stan, A. and Leslie, T. (2024) ‘A steady-state model-based evaluation of performance characteristics and feasibility analysis of retrofit hydrogen-powered aircraft configurations’, Int. J. Sustainable Aviation, Vol. 10, No. 2, pp.99–123.

27 May 2024

Research pick: Technological food security - "An examination of internet of things in the South Korean agricultural industry: the case of Samsung"

Research in the World Review of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development discusses how the integration of advanced technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), big data, and cloud computing can bring about significant change in agriculture. This point is particularly relevant in South Korea, where there is a growing demand for affordable, nutritious, and healthy food.

The research by Sean Watts of the International Business Keimyung Adams College at KeiMyung University in Daegu, South Korea, and colleagues in Australia, South Korea, Taiwan, and Vietnam, focuses on Samsung as a leading player in IoT and the role it might play in improving efficiency and sustainability in agriculture.

The team has taken a mixed-methodology approach, including qualitative action-based research, to investigate how a company might expand its IoT services into South Korean agriculture. Surveys conducted with representatives from the South Korean Farmers’ Agricultural Association (Nonghyup) identified four promising IoT-based smart grid initiatives. The research points out that despite Samsung’s strong brand presence and the potential benefits of IoT, its use in South Korean farming is still limited and not yet widely recognized.

The combination of AI and IoT could lead to new opportunities for a company well positioned to support farmers in their quest for improved efficiency and the demands of sustainability given the environmental and socioeconomic issues we currently face globally. There is also the potential for consumers to use technological advancements to grow their own food in kitchen gardens and on allotments more effectively. This would extend the benefits of IoT technology well beyond conventional farming environments.

Globally, a lack of food security affects almost 700 million people where they lack easy and affordable access to sufficient, nutritious, and safe food, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. In Asia, a grain deficit of 10.8 million tonnes has resulted in well over 300 million people facing food insecurity, a crisis surpassed only by Sub-Saharan Africa. If the global population expands by 1.7 billion by the year 2050, the pressure on food production resources will worsen. Technological solutions might be the only way to continue to put food on the table.

Watts, S., Hoa, N.T.T., Martens, W., Doan, D.T. and Guzman, A. (2024) ‘An examination of internet of things in the South Korean agricultural industry: the case of Samsung’, World Review of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development, Vol. 20, No. 3, pp.374–396.

24 May 2024

Free Open Access article available: "To connect or not to connect? Responding to the Digital Silk Road in Central and Eastern Europe"

The following paper, "To connect or not to connect? Responding to the Digital Silk Road in Central and Eastern Europe" (European Journal of International Management 23(2/3) 2024), 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 Globalisation and Small Business

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Globalisation and Small Business are now available here for free:
  • Inward FDI in Estonia: motivational and obstacles/inhibiting factors associated with the MNC's subsidiary export performance
  • Composition-based strategy and firm's performance: the mediating role of competitive advantage
  • External pressures and financial performance of Indonesian MSMEs: role of material flow cost accounting
  • The effects of dynamic capabilities on international SMEs' performance
  • Linking the CEO personality and firm performance in micro, small and medium enterprises based in western India: measuring the mediating effect of learning and growth intentions


Research pick: Navigating the digital silkroad - "To connect or not to connect? Responding to the Digital Silk Road in Central and Eastern Europe"

The Digital Silk Road (DSR) an economic initiative launched by China in 2015 is a key component of the country’s broader Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Its primary aim is to extend China’s influence through digital and technological means globally, including the Central and Eastern Europe region, the CEE.

Research by Ágnes Szunomár of the Corvinus University of Budapest and Institute of World Economics in Hungary in the European Journal of International Management has looked at how the initiative seeks to integrate Chinese technologies and standards into the digital ecosystems of various countries. Ultimately, the DSR will open up new markets around the world to Chinese companies. Szunomár’s work shows how this expansion has been met with a mixed response across the CEE. Of concern are the balance of economic, political, and security considerations facing the region as China expands its global reach.

One of the major concerns surrounding the DSR is the increased involvement of Chinese companies in the development, installation, implementation, and maintenance of critical digital infrastructure. European countries are concerned that there could be not only a loss of industrial competitiveness, but increased dependence on China. Moreover, there is the worry that the Chinese government may well have ultimate control of such companies. There are thus national security issues to be considered as well as lower-level, but important, threats to privacy and security at the industrial and personal level. Given the potential for China to have control over the flow of data through the infrastructure its companies build these concerns may well be warranted.

The research touches on the growing economic presence in Europe of Chinese companies over the past two decades. Indeed, the European Union (EU) has designated China as a systemic rival. Although across the broader CEE, reactions to the DSR and Chinese technology companies varies enormously. Many CEE countries share the general European and, indeed, American concerns about Chinese influence. However, Hungary and Serbia are I seems more accepting and receptive to Chinese investment and technology. These countries see the low-cost telecommunications equipment offered by Chinese firms as presenting them with an opportunity for greater national economic growth and technological advancement.

In contrast, Czechia, Estonia, Poland, and Romania are among the more sceptical of Chinese advances and in some ways are in outright opposition. These countries are aligned more closely with the US and EU positions, in particular on the notion of digital sovereignty and cellular broadband, 5G, security.

Szunomár has looked at why there are such disparate responses to Chinese advances. Inevitably, those countries that prioritize security concerns and are aligned with the US and EU stance, tend to show greater opposition to the involvement of Chinese technology. The counties that are happy to take the perceived risks in favour of economic advancement are thus emboldened to accept greater participation from China in their technological affairs.

Szunomár, Á. (2024) ‘To connect or not to connect? Responding to the Digital Silk Road in Central and Eastern Europe‘, European J. International Management, Vol. 23, Nos. 2/3, pp.344-363.

Special issue published: "The Impact on the Digital Silk Road on European Countries and Companies in the Shadow of Covid-19: A European Perspective on the Belt and Road Initiative" (includes Open Access article)

European Journal of International Management 23(2/3) 2024

  • Boosting business confidence for Chinese multinationals in the Belt and Road Initiative
  • CAGE distance and innovation performance in MNEs: the moderating role of CSR
  • How does political uncertainty affect Chinese corporate M&A abroad? Evidence from the BRI scenario
  • The relationship between Belt and Road Initiative and Agenda 2030: a litmus test for global sustainability and regional cooperation
  • Expected levels of sectoral economic integration: implications of the BRI project for resource-rich countries
  • The Digital Silk Road in support of state-driven standard-setting: implications to European firms
  • To connect or not to connect? Responding to the Digital Silk Road in Central and Eastern Europe [OPEN ACCESS]
  • Disconnecting European companies and countries? Case studies call for modulating worries about China's Digital Silk Road
  • China's Digital Silk Road investment effect: a boon for European countries or a danger to security?
  • Cross-border M&As and early subordinate-leader trust: a social identity approach
  • The impact of digitalisation on the profitability of large US banks
  • Investigation of earnings management based on unique country samples
  • Unorganised entrepreneurship and role of family supporting factors in women-owned micro-enterprises in North India
  • Battle to win human capital through social media recruiting technology: an empirical revision of the UTAUT2

23 May 2024

Research pick: Graded grains make finer materials - "Comparing open-source optimisation algorithms for functionally graded material design: a thermoelastic case study"

A study from Japan published in the International Journal of Computer Aided Engineering and Technology reveals a way to optimize the composition of functionally graded materials (FGMs). FGMs are advanced composite materials with a gradual variation in composition and properties across their volume, designed to optimize performance under specific loading conditions. The work could be used to mitigate residual thermal stress in uniformly cooled, multi-layered FGM plates allowing them to cope better with the significant thermal cycles found in aerospace applications and in the power generation industry.

Ryoichi Chiba of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Sanyo-Onoda City University has used what are referred to as black-box optimization (BBO) techniques within the open-source framework Optuna to carry out the investigation. Optuna is known as a user-friendly interface, ideal for complex such optimization tasks. Chiba has used three Optuna algorithms: the tree-structured Parzen estimator (TPE), the covariance matrix adaptation evolutionary strategy (CMA-ES), and the non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm II (NSGA-II). Each of these algorithms offers a unique approach to optimization, with TPE focusing on rapid convergence, and CMA-ES and NSGA-II on evolutionary strategies.

The optimization of FGMs has always proved a tough task as there are so many variables at play in their design and production any one of which might have a significant positive or negative impact on their properties. Chiba explains that the CMA-ES algorithm worked best. While TPE converged quickly on a solution, its optimization quality was not as high as the more thorough evolutionary approaches of CMA-ES and NSGA-II. There were, the work shows, problems that can arise in attempting to account for interactions between design variables that were sometimes counterproductive leading to a more complicated optimization rather than an enhanced process.

Chiba, R. (2024) ‘Comparing open-source optimisation algorithms for functionally graded material design: a thermoelastic case study’, Int. J. Computer Aided Engineering and Technology, Vol. 19, No. 1, pp.1–12.

Free Open Access article available: "Comparing open-source optimisation algorithms for functionally graded material design: a thermoelastic case study"

The following paper, "Comparing open-source optimisation algorithms for functionally graded material design: a thermoelastic case study" (International Journal of Computer Aided Engineering and Technology 19(1) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

22 May 2024

Research pick: Searching the talkies - "An implementation of searchable video player"

A new approach to searching through video content has been developed by a team in South Korea. The system, described in the International Journal of Computational Vision and Robotics, extracts spoken word from a video recording, converts it to text, and then makes that text searchable. Importantly, the system thus does not rely on embedded keywords nor curated tags or hashtags to be associated with the video content.

The approach obviously relies on the dialogue or spoken commentary of an item being associated with the scenes in the video that users might wish to search. It is, of course, superfluous if the video has subtitles already baked in. Nevertheless, it will be a boon for users wishing to search the millions of hours of video available in databases, on streaming services, and elsewhere on the internet and could be used to help catalogue videos.

Kitae Hwang, In Hwan Jung, and Jae Moon Lee of the School of Computer Engineering at Hansung University in Seoul, have developed an Android app for use with appropriate smartphones. It is worth noting, however, that there is at least one other app with the same name, so should this app be made available in the Google Play Store for Android apps, it is likely to require a change of name.

The new app works by extracting audio from videos using the FFmpeg code and converting it into text in ten-second increments. This, the team explains, creates a searchable timeline for the video. Advanced speech recognition technology then generates a transcription of those audio segments, which are indexed on the video timeline. For a 20-minute video, the process is complete in just two to three minutes and runs in the background while the video plays. The team points out that users can then search for specific terms and find all mentions in the video.

The app will have applications in education, news analysis, and other information-dense video where quick access to specific information is needed. For instance, students reviewing lecture recordings or journalists searching for specific statements in interviews could make use of this app. There are many more scenarios where it would be useful to be able to search video in this manner.

Hwang, K., Jung, I.H. and Lee, J.M. (2024) ‘An implementation of searchable video player’, Int. J. Computational Vision and Robotics, Vol. 14, No. 3, pp.325–337.

International Journal of Powertrains to invite expanded papers from 7th Biennial International Conference on Powertrain Modelling and Control for Decarbonized, Electrified and Smart Mobility for potential publication

Extended versions of papers presented at the 7th Biennial International Conference on Powertrain Modelling and Control for Decarbonized, Electrified and Smart Mobility (30 October - 1 November 2024, Dalian University of Technology, China) will be invited for review and potential publication by the International Journal of Powertrains.

International Journal of Business and Emerging Markets is now an open access-only journal

We are pleased to announce that the International Journal of Business and Emerging Markets is now an Open Access-only journal. All accepted articles submitted from 15th May 2024 onwards will be Open Access, and will require an article processing charge of US $1600.

21 May 2024

Research pick: Chasing greener pavements - "A study on high albedo permeable pavement reducing urban heat islands, flash floods and groundwater depletion"

Could permeable and high-albedo materials for road surfaces that replace asphalt across towns and cities reduce the urban heat island effect at the height of summer as well as reducing the risk of flash floods and groundwater depletion? An idea in the International Journal of Student Project Reporting hopes to answer that very question.

Julianna Syros, Alexander Villiers, Ginger Arnold, Bryan De La Paz, and Trevor Fai of the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, USA, allude to how urbanization has become synonymous with progress, bringing with it modern amenities, economic growth, and improved living standards. However, this expansion has brought with it serious environmental challenges, notably flash floods, groundwater depletion, and the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect. These issues largely arise from the extensive use of impermeable materials like asphalt in road construction, revealing a critical need to rethink our choices when it comes to transport infrastructure.

Asphalt is relatively low cost when compared to concrete and so has become the primary material used in road surfacing in urban areas the world over. However, this preference comes at a significant environmental cost. The impermeable nature of asphalt prevents rainwater from being absorbed into the ground, leading to rapid runoff and flash floods. This runoff can carry pollutants to water bodies and also hinders groundwater recharge, depleting vital water resources.

Moreover, asphalt’s heat-absorbing properties contribute to the heat island effect. This effect sees urban areas experiencing higher temperatures than their rural counterparts, a problem that will become increasingly worrying as global temperature rises through climate change. The phenomenon is largely driven by the high density of heat-absorbing surfaces, such as roads and buildings, which trap heat and only slowly release it from the “island” as a whole. For towns and cities in hot countries and those facing increasingly common temperature spikes, the effect is to increase urban energy demands as those living and working there rely more and more on air conditioning to keep cool. Those without access that luxury will suffer the heat, which could lead to health problems and increased fatalities among the vulnerable during a heatwave.

Concrete, despite its higher upfront cost, presents a viable alternative with long-term benefits. Unlike asphalt, concrete is more durable and requires less maintenance, leading to lower costs over its lifespan. Furthermore, concrete can be designed to be permeable, allowing water to percolate through and recharge groundwater, thereby mitigating flash floods. High-albedo (reflective) concrete surfaces can also reflect more sunlight, reducing heat absorption and alleviating the UHI effect.

The team suggests that overcoming the societal and economic barriers are essential if sustainable transport infrastructure is to be developed to address the increasingly detrimental effects of urbanization. Investment may well attract greater initial costs, but in the long-term fewer flash floods, conservation of groundwater resources, and a significant reduction in the heat island effect would offer immediate payback when compared to sticking to asphalt.

Syros, J., Villiers, A., Arnold, G., De La Paz, B. and Fai, T. (2024) ‘A study on high albedo permeable pavement reducing urban heat islands, flash floods and groundwater depletion’, Int. J. Student Project Reporting, Vol. 2, No. 1, pp.1–20.

20 May 2024

Open Access issue published by International Journal of Information and Communication Technology

The International Journal of Information and Communication Technology has published an Open Access issue. All of the issue’s papers can be downloaded via the full-text links available here.
  • Mathematical modelling of multi-UAV scenario planning based on 3D LiDAR
  • Deconstruction of the influence of entrepreneurial orientation on innovation performance based on logistic regression model
  • Integration of Fourth Industrial Revolution in teaching and learning during COVID-19 pandemic
  • Research on high-precision time synchronisation technology for sea mobile platforms
  • Chinese character style transfer based on improved StarGAN v2 network
  • Analysing university student pension insurance using the K-prototypes algorithm and logistic regression model

Research pick: Art for AI’s sake - "Artificial intelligence in classifying and creating art: a survey"

A comprehensive survey by a team from Croatia in the International Journal of Student Project Reporting, has looked at the intersection of art and artificial intelligence (AI). The team has focused on how AI technologies are employed in the classification and also the creation of artworks. Andrej Šimić and Marina Bagić Babac of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing at the University of Zagreb have analysed and categorised a number of research papers in this field to understand the methodologies, techniques, and outcomes in this emerging field. They discuss the two main applications of AI in art: the automated analysis of existing artworks and the generation of new ones.

AI-based art classification involves using machine learning algorithms to categorise artworks by attributes such as genre, style, and artist. This automated classification improves the ability of art historians and collectors to identify and categorise artworks with greater accuracy and efficiency. Techniques such as convolutional neural networks (CNNs) have been key in achieving high accuracy in these classification tasks, the team reports. CNNs can identify subtle patterns and features that might be challenging for human analysts to discern, providing deeper insights into the artistic attributes of different works.

In terms of art creation, the survey explores innovative AI-driven techniques such as style transfer, Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs), and text-to-image synthesis. Style transfer allows an image to be reinterpreted in the style of another, facilitating creative explorations and new artistic expressions.

GANs, the team explains, consist of two neural networks working together to generate realistic images. They enable the creation of “novel” artworks with intricate details and often a high degree of realism. Text-to-image synthesis offers a different approach where the AI generates images based on a prompt describing what the user would like to see. This can allow an almost seamless translation of ideas into the visual form.

The integration of AI in art has several implications. For art analysis, it democratizes access to art historical research and enhances the precision of art authentication and valuation. For art creation, AI provides artists with new tools and sources of inspiration, potentially expanding the scope of creativity. The ability of AI to generate art also raises questions about authorship and originality, challenging traditional notions of creativity. Indeed, the issues of copyright, permissions and plagiarism are high on the agenda in this area and have not yet been settled to everyone’s agreement.

Šimić, A. and Bagić Babac, M. (2024) ‘Artificial intelligence in classifying and creating art: a survey’, Int. J. Student Project Reporting, Vol. 2, No. 1, pp.59–89.

Prof. Gustavo Alonso appointed as new Editor in Chief of International Journal of Low Radiation

Prof. Gustavo Alonso from the National Institute of Nuclear Research in Mexico has been appointed to take over editorship of the International Journal of Low Radiation.

17 May 2024

Free Open Access article available: "New product development in the fast fashion industry: a case study in Vietnam"

The following paper, "New product development in the fast fashion industry: a case study in Vietnam" (International Journal of Services and Operations Management 48(1) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Special issue published: "Health Economics and Econometrics"

International Journal of Computational Economics and Econometrics 14(2) 2024

  • Procuring medical devices: evidence from Italian public tenders
  • Technical efficiency in Irish public hospitals: a multi-output distance function SFA approach
  • The role of home healthcare in reducing hospital readmissions and costs in patients with acute myocardial infarction
  • Is the European refugee crisis a potential threat to public health? Evidence from Italy
  • Might low-protein diet for chronic kidney disease patients be successful? A case study with the application of a random effects ordered probit model
  • Financial problems and self-reported health status: an analysis for selected European countries

Research pick: Boosting the social signal to noise ratio - "Identifying sources of noise within the networked interplay of marketing messages in social media communication"

In social media marketing, where the transmission of messages is incessant, researchers from the UK have investigated the concept of different kinds of message noise, which act as barriers to clear communication by distorting the social media messages.

Writing in the International Journal of Internet Marketing and Advertising, Kimberley Hardcastle, Prabash Edirisingha, and Paul Cook of Northumbria University, Newcastle, explain how they carried out a 21-month study to analyse data from the well-known social media sites Instagram and Twitter, now known as X, based on an analysis of hashtags. Hashtags are keywords used with a hash, #, to help users define the content they post and for other users to find content of interest in a particular area.

The team identified three main types of message noise: technical, material, and architectural. Technical noise stems from software and hardware limitations, material noise arises from intentional, and perhaps unintentional, design features of platforms and devices, and architectural noise emerges from network interactions.

The researchers identified five key interception points where message meaning can become distorted on social media. This distortion affects how consumers interpret those incessant messages on their smart devices. In addition, the research shows that the user’s choice of communication platform and device can greatly influence how well a message is transmitted and received and subsequently interpreted. Moreover, specific functionality of the platform being used also affects message retrieval and interpretation.

In practical terms, the findings might help guide digital marketing practitioners. By understanding the nature of material noise marketers can find better ways to help their would-be customers navigate technological barriers. For instance, guiding consumers to access messages across different platforms or encouraging them to develop skills to navigate material noise effectively.

The work also shows that there has been limitations in our understanding of noise in social media communication so far. The team urges fellow researchers to look more deeply into this area to improve still further our understanding and how they affect human and “non-human” choices made in response to the interpretation of a given message.

Hardcastle, K., Edirisingha, P. and Cook, P. (2024) ‘Identifying sources of noise within the networked interplay of marketing messages in social media communication’, Int. J. Internet Marketing and Advertising, Vol. 20, No. 2, pp.164–187.

Open Access issue published by International Journal of Information and Communication Technology

The International Journal of Information and Communication Technology has published an Open Access issue. All of the issue’s papers can be downloaded via the full-text links available here.
  • Virtual machining simulation of automatic numerical control machine tool depending on dynamic cutting algorithm
  • Based on fuzzy mathematics multi-level comprehensive evaluation of physical education teaching quality and improvement
  • Resource backup algorithm of service function chain based on network characteristics and sharing advantages
  • Improved DeepLabv3+ connected augmented reality technology for building target extraction in urban environmental design
  • A health prediction method for new energy vehicle power batteries based on AACNN-LSTM neural network
  • The application of geometric form in architectural interior environment design

16 May 2024

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:
  • Energy management audits, systematic literature review and framework proposition
  • Indonesian natural gas policy reform
  • Drivers and inhibitors of adoption of led lighting by households in India - a structural equation modelling approach
  • Experimental investigations of dual fuelled two-cylinder diesel engine with biodiesel and natural gas using a novel air-gas mixer
  • Development and validation of a thermal model for line focus solar concentrators in water heating applications

Special issue published: "Financial Sustainability in Emerging Economies"

International Journal of Economic Policy in Emerging Economies 19(2) 2024

  • The relationship between financial risk, financial openness, trade openness, and financial development in Southern Mediterranean countries
  • Consumer price index, real estate price weight and monetary policy in the Czech Republic
  • Is Bitcoin a risky investment compared to the stock market of Vietnam?
  • Impact of sector levy on non-life insurance in Slovakia
  • Environment information comparability: a case of the selected, listed Polish companies
  • Does corporate governance influence intellectual capital? An evaluation of Indian and Chinese banking sector

Research pick: A new lease of life for old laptops - "Remanufacturing of end-of-life laptop based on remaining useful life prediction and quality grading with random forest and cluster analysis"

Researchers in India have developed a tool that can estimate the remaining useful life of an otherwise obsolete laptop computer based on quality grading of two of its main components – hard drive and rechargeable lithium-ion battery. The work, published in the International Journal of Process Management and Benchmarking, focused on developing a decision support tool (DST) that could improve sustainable laptop remanufacturing practices.

Gurunathan Anandh, Shanmugam Prasanna Venkatesan, Sandanam Domnic, and Santosh Awaje of the National Institute of Technology in Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu, discuss the concept of remanufacturing, the process of disassembling, assessing, and repairing or replacing components to restore functionality to a device. Remanufacturing could be one solution to the environmental and economic challenges we currently face. However, successful remanufacturing needs accurate information about the device’s components, which presents its own challenges.

The team turned to machine-learning algorithms such as Random Forest (RF) to help them predict remaining useful life and K-means clustering for the quality grading of components. The researchers’ approach uses well-known spreadsheet software, Microsoft Excel, as its interface and is supplemented with Python scripting. By making such choices, the researchers hope their system should be accessible to practitioners with varying levels of expertise.

The practical use of the research will fill the gaps needed for improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the laptop remanufacturing process. By using an approach based on data and machine learning, the team suggests that remanufacturing can be guided for the repair, replacement, or necessary disposal of the main components. This would not only reduce waste and give a new lease of life to old equipment but could improve profitability for the companies involved in remanufacturing. The next step will be to extend the method to other laptop components and perhaps to other types of device.

Anandh, G., Venkatesan, S.P., Domnic, S. and Awaje, S. (2024) ‘Remanufacturing of end-of-life laptop based on remaining useful life prediction and quality grading with random forest and cluster analysis’, Int. J. Process Management and Benchmarking, Vol. 17, No. 2, pp.137–152.

Free Open Access article available: "Integration of Fourth Industrial Revolution in teaching and learning during COVID-19 pandemic"

The following paper, "Integration of Fourth Industrial Revolution in teaching and learning during COVID-19 pandemic" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(6) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

15 May 2024

Special issue published: "Integration of Innovative Strategies in Business and Education for Sustainable Development Across Vietnam"

Journal for Global Business Advancement 16(2) 2023

  • Determinants of interest rate spread and the moderating role of income diversity: the case of Vietnamese commercial banks
  • Personality traits as the explaining factors of employee engagement: a study in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  • Value co-creation and e-learning acceptance in Vietnamese universities
  • The adoption of Industry 4.0 technology and the circular economy: a solution for the sustainable development of enterprises
  • The Vietnamese context: the effects of brand personality and social media on purchase intentions of authentic agricultural products
  • Green CSR's role in retail competitive advantage: mediation by marketing and moderation by reputation

Free Open Access article available: "Research on high-precision time synchronisation technology for sea mobile platforms"

The following paper, "Research on high-precision time synchronisation technology for sea mobile platforms" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(6) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Research pick: Fast fashion comes to town - "New product development in the fast fashion industry: a case study in Vietnam"

In the world of fast fashion, New Product Development (NPD) is the main option for companies hoping to maintain relevance and competitiveness in an ever-changing market. NPD is a multifaceted process and covers the generation of ideas, design and implementation of those ideas, prototype and product testing, and eventual launch of a new product on to the market with the aim of capitalizing on emerging market opportunities and addressing consumer needs.

According to Duong Quang Hao, Ngoc-Hien Do, and Duc Duy Nguyen of Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology in Vietnam writing in the International Journal of Services and Operations Management, NPD is a complex process and demands a lot of company resources. This is particularly true in industries marked by rapid shifts in consumer preferences and short product lifecycles, such as fashion. However, an alternative approach to NPD has emerged that puts the focus on strategic integration of competitor analysis and customer feedback. This can allow a company to streamline the development processes and improve its competitiveness, especially in the world of start-up ventures.

A useful tool on this overall streamlining process is the Competitor Profile Matrix (CPM) method. This allows companies to identify and analyse their main competitors. They can dissect their best-selling products to work out what are the important customer preferences at a given time. This initial step in the new NPD process gives them a template for understanding the changing market and allows them to stitch together their own product ideas.

Once ideas are sewn up, the wily company might then engage directly with its target customer base to gain feedback and gauge preferences. By opting for a customer-centric approach, they can ensure that their new product features and functionalities are going to be welcomed by the market. This will then mitigate the risk of pushing products that end up hemmed in by more competitive offerings and so remain on the fringes of the fashion patchwork rather than becoming the chic pieces everyone wants to be seen to wear.

While the approach is tailored for start-ups in the fast fashion sector, a similar iterative methodology might also be used across other industries. The strategic integration of competitor analysis and customer feedback into the NPD process offers a pragmatic approach to the modern marketplace.

Hao, D.Q., Do, N-H. and Nguyen, D.D. (2024) ‘New product development in the fast fashion industry: a case study in Vietnam’, Int. J. Services and Operations Management, Vol. 48, No. 1, pp.136–154.

Special issue published: "Security and Privacy Issues in Multi Source Information Fusion"

International Journal of Computational Science and Engineering 27(3) 2024

  • Network traffic anomaly detection based on deep learning: a review
  • Attack and defense simulation platform for satellite networks based on Mininet
  • Research on econometric safety model for export structure of manufacturing industry
  • ISWM: an information security system for water surface oil spill monitoring based on NB-IoT
  • An efficient deep learning approach for identifying interstitial lung diseases using HRCT images
Additional papers
  • Study on the capacity of a hybrid solar PV/wind turbine system using small-scale prototype application for dairy farm power demand in North Texas
  • A context-aware factorisation machine approach for accurate QoS prediction
  • Availability assessment and sensitivity analysis of an MBaaS platform
  • A light-weight model with granularity feature representation for fine-grained visual classification
  • Supervised learning models to predict mental illness and its severity from Reddit posts
  • Integer wavelet transform based data hiding scheme for electrocardiogram signals protection

Free Open Access article available: "Mathematical modelling of multi-UAV scenario planning based on 3D LiDAR"

The following paper, "Mathematical modelling of multi-UAV scenario planning based on 3D LiDAR" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(6) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

14 May 2024

Free Open Access article available: "Chinese character style transfer based on improved StarGAN v2 network"

The following paper, "Chinese character style transfer based on improved StarGAN v2 network" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(6) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Free Open Access article available: "Deconstruction of the influence of entrepreneurial orientation on innovation performance based on logistic regression model"

The following paper, "Deconstruction of the influence of entrepreneurial orientation on innovation performance based on logistic regression model" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(6) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Research pick: The rise of the digital coupon - "Factors affecting mobile coupon acceptance through smartphone app"

Across commerce, the presence of the smartphone has changed consumer behaviour beyond recognition. This shift is most evident in what might be terms mobile commerce, or m-commerce. Research in the International Journal of Business Information Systems has looked at India, with its rapidly growing smartphone user base, and suggests that the nation is poised to become a major part of the global m-commerce market by 2025.

K.A. Asraar Ahmed of the VIT-AP University in Andhra Pradesh, India, V.S. Damodharan of the Al Jazirah Institute of Science and Technology in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and S. Kumaraperumal of the Rajalakshmi School of Business in Tamil Nadu, India, have looked at the various factors influencing the adoption of mobile coupon applications (apps) among Indian consumers. The team used extended Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology 2 (UTAUT2) model as well as Structural Equation Modelling to analyse the way in which consumers use mobile coupons when shopping online via their smartphones.

Mobile coupons, or vouchers, offer discounts on purchases and are used directly in one’s smartphone at the time of sale. As with web coupons and before them, paper shopping coupons, have become a powerful marketing tool for sellers around the world. Their appeal is evident for consumers, they get an apparent discount on their purchases, but for the sellers, they get the kudos of having offered such a discount, which might lead to subsequent sales. The team points out that in India, smartphone penetration is expected to surpass 1 billion by 2025. As such, the potential for widespread adoption of mobile coupons is enormous.

The researchers found several key drivers that affected whether consumers used mobile coupon apps in India. These included the perceived value of the discount offered, trust in the security of the online transaction using the coupon, the influence of social networks, concerns regarding privacy and data security, expectations regarding app performance, willingness to embrace innovation, hedonic motivation, and a person’s own confidence in using mobile technology effectively. Fundamentally, however, it was price value that was most important, followed closely by trust and external social influence.

The work thus has implications for marketers and policymakers. For marketers, a better understanding of the various factors influence mobile coupon use can help guide their marketing strategy. For policymakers, understanding the way in which the market is being influenced and the impact on buyers and sellers is important for ensuring safety and security on both sides and allowing for appropriate regulations surrounding this area of commerce.

Ahmed, K.A.A., Damodharan, V.S. and Kumaraperumal, S. (2024) ‘Factors affecting mobile coupon acceptance through smartphone app’, Int. J. Business Information Systems, Vol. 46, No. 1, pp.140–164.

Special issue published: "Analysis of Energy Efficiency Perspectives and Policies Towards Sustainable Development"

International Journal of Energy Technology and Policy 19(1/2) 2024

  • Method for predicting comprehensive energy demand in industrial parks based on echo state networks
  • The dynamic impact of regional construction industry economy, energy and carbon emissions based on HMM
  • Multi-objective capacity optimisation method for renewable energy generation systems based on artificial bee colony algorithm
  • Evaluation method for energy conservation and emission reduction potential of photovoltaic new energy based on entropy weighted matter element
  • Low voltage current transformer defect detection method based on Hausdorff distance algorithm under charged state
  • Fuzzy PID-based temperature control method for power transformer coils
  • Load coordination control method of new energy vehicle charging pile based on Markov chain
  • Partial discharge detection method for power equipment based on UHF method
  • Research on carbon emission accounting of SF6 electrical equipment based on improved random forest algorithm
  • Evaluation method of enterprise carbon asset value based on analytic hierarchy process and grey correlation method in the context of carbon neutrality
  • Robust design of damping controller for power system using a combination of snake optimisation algorithm and optimal control theory
  • Frequency modulation control of electric energy storage system based on abundance index

Free Open Access article available: "Factors affecting mobile coupon acceptance through smartphone app"

The following paper, "Factors affecting mobile coupon acceptance through smartphone app" (International Journal of Business Information Systems 46(1) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

13 May 2024

Free Open Access article available: "Analysing university student pension insurance using the K-prototypes algorithm and logistic regression model"

The following paper, "Analysing university student pension insurance using the K-prototypes algorithm and logistic regression model" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(6) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Free Open Access article available: "M&A disclosure post-global financial crisis: the influence of family ownership"

The following paper, "M&A disclosure post-global financial crisis: the influence of family ownership" (International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation 20(3/4) 2024), 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 Automotive Technology and Management

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Automotive Technology and Management are now available here for free:
  • China's auto industry: regimes of production and industrial policy in the age of electric cars
  • '2022 – the first year of the EV era in Japan?' The COVID crisis and its impact on the Japanese automobile industry
  • COVID-19 crisis and the automotive industry in Mexico: public policies and firm strategies
  • The Italian Government's industrial policies in the automotive sector
  • A government-driven sectoral transformation? French and German policy responses to the COVID-crisis in the automotive industry

Free Open Access article available: "The moderate role of national culture and prosperity index on the effectiveness of the fraud triangle to prevent financial statement fraud: a cross-country meta-analysis approach"

The following paper, "The moderate role of national culture and prosperity index on the effectiveness of the fraud triangle to prevent financial statement fraud: a cross-country meta-analysis approach" (International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation 20(3/4) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Research pick: Squaring the triangle on fraud - "The moderate role of national culture and prosperity index on the effectiveness of the fraud triangle to prevent financial statement fraud: a cross-country meta-analysis approach"

Research in the International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation has considered the growing concerns regarding financial integrity and transparency and has looked at the concept of financial statement fraud (FSF), how it might be more easily detected, and how it might be prevented. The work results in some practical insights into how fraud risks might be mitigated around the world and shares with implications for the various stakeholders, including regulators, financial analysts, and investors.

Milad Soltani and Alexios Kythreotis of the European University Cyprus in Nicosia, Cyprus, and Arash Roshanpoor of the Islamic Azad University in Tehran, Iran, explain that there is an increasing need for accountability in the wake of contemporary financial scandals. Regulatory measures and laws have been put in place but subsequent crises repeatedly emphasise a need for tougher measures against fraud and greater financial transparency at all levels.

The team has developed a framework for understanding the factors that contribute to fraudulent behaviour and looked at the efficacy of the fraud triangle for addressing the problem. To do so, the researchers used a meta-analysis of studies in these areas to achieve their three primary objectives. First, they identified effective risk factors for FSF, considering the influence of a nation’s characteristics on fraud risks. Secondly, they examined variations in research outcomes, focusing on country-related attributes impacting FSF detection. Thirdly, they have evaluated global fraud risks and propose tailored fraud detection models by clustering countries with similar characteristics.

There was, the researchers found, a significant difference in fraud risk among countries despite some of them sharing similar characteristics. They say that this suggests a tailored approach to fraud detection models is needed to examine each cluster of countries. Such findings will be important to policymakers, regulators, and financial analysts hoping to develop and implement new targeted measures to fight financial fraud globally.

Soltani, M., Kythreotis, A. and Roshanpoor, A. (2024) ‘The moderate role of national culture and prosperity index on the effectiveness of the fraud triangle to prevent financial statement fraud: a cross-country meta-analysis approach’, Int. J. Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation, Vol. 20, Nos. 3/4, pp.251–290.

10 May 2024

Free Open Access article available: "The application of geometric form in architectural interior environment design"

The following paper, "The application of geometric form in architectural interior environment design" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(5) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Research pick: A greener tee-shirt, naturally - "Is naturally coloured cotton a sustainable substitute for cotton textile?"

Research in the journal World Review of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development, has looked at consumer attitudes towards naturally coloured cotton clothing. The study found that amid increasing concerns over the environmental impact of conventional cotton processing, consumers are willing to pay more for a greener tee-shirt.

A.S. Dishoja, Nisha Bharti, and Sushant Malik of the Symbiosis Institute of International Business at Symbiosis International (Deemed University) in Pune, Maharashtra, India, used data analysis techniques, including decision trees and cluster analysis, to reveal that a fairly significant proportion of respondents to their survey on consumer attitudes expressed interest in purchasing naturally coloured cotton apparel. 28 percent of consumers, they found, were willing to pay a premium of up to 15% for such products.

Naturally coloured cotton is appealing to a certain type of consumer because it aligns with their environmental attitudes more than the conventional approaches taken by the textiles dying industry. There are also notions of comfort, durability, and price being associated with greener products.

India has a great historical legacy in cotton production, including the cultivation of naturally coloured cotton varieties. Despite the challenges of lower productivity and reduced fibre quality when compared to conventional cotton, naturally coloured cotton has begun to gain traction in the textile markets, especially in Europe. The problem facing the supply chain, is the limited marketing infrastructure in India, which represents something of a barrier to the wider adoption of greener cotton.

The researchers, however, have demonstrated that consumers are beginning to change their mindset towards sustainability and many of them are now willing to pay more in the name of saving the planet, as it were. This, the team says, represents a new opportunity for companies to selectively and effectively market naturally coloured cotton apparel. There will be a pressing need for policymakers hoping to develop a sustainable agenda to encourage this kind of change in mindset and consumer behaviour. If they can foster an environment conducive to the growth of eco-friendly alternatives to standard cotton products, then they can contribute to sustainability in the clothing industry.

Dishoja, A.S., Bharti, N. and Malik, S. (2024) ‘Is naturally coloured cotton a sustainable substitute for cotton textile?’, World Review of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development, Vol. 20, No. 3, pp.338–354.

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Markets and Business Systems

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Markets and Business Systems are now available here for free:
  • Bio-products market in Georgia: current challenges and development perspectives
  • Consumer attitudes toward the adoption of mobile marketing in Namibia
  • Application of linguistic modelling to systems and product design
  • Ethical concerns of consumers in mobile marketing

Free Open Access article available: "A health prediction method for new energy vehicle power batteries based on AACNN-LSTM neural network"

The following paper, "A health prediction method for new energy vehicle power batteries based on AACNN-LSTM neural network" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(5) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

9 May 2024

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

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Management and Enterprise Development are now available here for free:
  • Future analysis to define guidelines for Iran's e-commerce: scenario planning
  • The relationship between leadership styles and creativity individuals: the mediating role of the individual's confidence in his creative strategic capabilities
  • State ownership, formality status and technical efficiency: evidence from Vietnamese SMEs
  • Understanding entrepreneurship behaviour among the youth: a behavioural change theory perspective

Free Open Access article available: "Improved DeepLabv3+ connected augmented reality technology for building target extraction in urban environmental design"

The following paper, "Improved DeepLabv3+ connected augmented reality technology for building target extraction in urban environmental design" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(5) 2024), 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 Electronic Governance

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Electronic Governance are now available here for free:
  • Governance mechanisms in vulnerable communities using a technology platform: a study case in 13 de noviembre, Colombia
  • eTHOS: a web-based tax morale system
  • Blockchain and smart contract enabled smart and secure electronic voting system
  • Applications for citizen e-participation and communication in the Czech Republic - current supply and content analysis of mobile apps
  • Improvement of e-government in Ukraine based on the experience of developed countries

Research pick: See-through mergers and acquisitions - "M&A disclosure post-global financial crisis: the influence of family ownership"

In business, company mergers and acquisitions (M&As) have weighty implications for companies and stakeholders alike. A study in the International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation has looked at M&As in the years following the global financial crisis (GFC) with a specific focus on Italy’s generally slow recovery from this crisis and teh the response of family-owned businesses, in particular. The team of Cristina Florio and Francesca Rossignoli of the Department of Management at the University of Verona, have looked at whether Italian companies were bolstered by disclosure standards in the aftermath of the GFC compared to pre-crisis levels.

M&As are, generally speaking, a strategic manoeuvre involving substantial investments and inherent risks. Disclosures surrounding such major business transactions are vital to transparency and understanding among shareholders, investors, lenders, and other stakeholders regarding the long-term impact on the acquiring company’s performance and the impact on those employed or investing in the company that is subsumed.

Before the GFC of 2007-2008, considered the biggest international economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s, evidence suggested that those involved in M&As were often failing to meeting the mandatory disclosure requirements of acquiring companies. However, the aftermath of the GFC, which was marked by unprecedented disruption to financial markets and subsequent heightened uncertainty, led to serious problems for companies seeking capital afterwards.

Florio and Rossignoli have looked at how companies responded by improving their M&A disclosure practices. This, they suggest, was an attempt to mitigate against investor wariness and to help them secure funding. As such, the team found that there was a significant improvement in M&A disclosures after the GFC. This was particularly noticeable among family-owned businesses that were seeking to acquire other business. This improvement in disclosure information shows that companies were trying to improve investor trust and so help them gain access to capital in the wake of the GFC.

From the perspective of regulators, these improvements in disclosures will be welcomed as a sign of companies better complying with mandatory requirements, which is important in turbulent times and bodes well for how companies might respond in a future crisis.

The team offers a precautionary note, however. They explain that there likely remain potential risks around opportunistic behaviour, where an acquirer might only selectively disclose information concerning goodwill recognition. The team suggests that investors should be vigilant and diligent in examining M&A disclosures in order to spot any underhand behaviour on the part of an acquirer.

Florio, C. and Rossignoli, F. (2024) ‘M&A disclosure post-global financial crisis: the influence of family ownership’, Int. J. Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation, Vol. 20, Nos. 3/4, pp.291–318.

Free Open Access article available: "Resource backup algorithm of service function chain based on network characteristics and sharing advantages"

The following paper, "Resource backup algorithm of service function chain based on network characteristics and sharing advantages" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(5) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

8 May 2024

Free Open Access article available: "Based on fuzzy mathematics multi-level comprehensive evaluation of physical education teaching quality and improvement"

The following paper, "Based on fuzzy mathematics multi-level comprehensive evaluation of physical education teaching quality and improvement" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(5) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Special issue published: "Political Economy of Populism" (includes Open Access article)

International Journal of Public Policy 17(3) 2024

  • A societal shift to the right or the political mobilisation of a shrinking minority? Explaining rise and radicalisation of the AfD in Germany [OPEN ACCESS]
  • The political economy of populism: an agenda-theoretic approach with special reference to Germany
  • Uncertainty - a unifying approach to populism and confidence in government
  • Fiscal austerity as a driver of populism in the European Union

Free Open Access article available: "Virtual machining simulation of automatic numerical control machine tool depending on dynamic cutting algorithm"

The following paper, "Virtual machining simulation of automatic numerical control machine tool depending on dynamic cutting algorithm" (International Journal of Information and Communication Technology 24(5) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Research pick: Crossing the digital borders - "Cross-border digital public services in the European Union: a systematic literature review"

As the European single market evolves alongside advancements in digital technology, there is an increasing need to consider cross-border digital public services. A systematic literature review in the International Journal of Electronic Governance shows that there are many gaps in research in this area. Work has primarily focused on the national and local levels rather than the European Union as a whole, and so lead to a fragmented understanding across disciplines.

The review by Stefan Dedovic and Vincent Homburg of the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies at the University of Tartu in Estonia suggests that European policy coordination thus faces many challenges concerning organizational matters and interoperability. This applies most to EU public administrations with respect to cross-border digital public services. The research considered in their review suggests that these issues are recognised, but there is a lack of a comprehensive framework to help us understand the issues and how they might be addressed.

European integration relies on the free movement of people, services, capital, and goods. However, there are obstacles that individuals and businesses encounter repeatedly when trying to use cross-border digital public services, such as digital enrolment, identity verification, and business registry access. Indeed, such essential services are often badly implemented.

Some efforts have been made to introduce legal frameworks such as regulations on electronic identification and trust services that are meant to standardize digital services and smooth cross-border accessibility. But, to work well, such regulations need prioritisation at the national and EU-level. Millions of European jobs rely on cross-border services so this is vital to development and growth.

The team’s review shows the gaps in research and so could provide a roadmap for future research directions to help in the development of governance, inter-organizational relationships, and interoperability. More research in those areas will allow problems to be solved. The team suggests that more research into the decision-making processes in multi-level governance settings, understanding the dynamics of organizational change, and addressing interoperability challenges will help move us forward. In addition, there is a pressing need to focus on the experiences of EU citizens.

Dedovic, S. and Homburg, V. (2024) ‘Cross-border digital public services in the European Union: a systematic literature review’, Int. J. Electronic Governance, Vol. 16, No. 1, pp.4–28.

7 May 2024

Free Open Access article available: "Cross-border digital public services in the European Union: a systematic literature review"

The following paper, "Cross-border digital public services in the European Union: a systematic literature review" (International Journal of Electronic Governance 16(1) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Free Open Access article available: "How to sample in necessary condition analysis (NCA)"

The following paper, "How to sample in necessary condition analysis (NCA)" (European Journal of International Management 23(1) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Research pick: A view of a room with VR and AI - "The application of geometric form in architectural interior environment design"

Bringing together virtual reality (VR) and artificial intelligence (AI) could lead to significant advancements in the field of interior design, according to research in the International Journal of Information and Communication Technology. Such a technological merger could be used to improve the design experience, tailor designs through simulated indoor environments, and give us better architectural outcomes. Such an approach would not remove our reliance on specialist designers and architects, but could lead to new approaches and opportunities.

According to Nan Yin of the Jilin University of Architecture and Technology in Changchun, Jilin, China, user-friendly design software, particularly from industry leaders like Autodesk in the USA and Kusile in China, has helped lower the overall workload for designers. Such software has allowed professionals to engage in interior design in different ways and even opened up the possibility of design to amateur designers. These tools have commonly used 3D reconstruction and virtual environments to offer an intuitive design experience.

Yin suggests that geometric and mathematical optimization strategies are now needed to address the complexity of building interior design. He suggests that in the use of hybrid recommendation modes and convolutional neural networks (CNNs) it should be possible to allow professional standards to be maintained while allowing for user preferences. Such a system has great potential for interior design, the research suggests.

The work focuses on the scientific application of geometric forms in interior design, particularly in terms of furniture selection and placement, with the emphasis on space functionality and user experience. The study offers insights into how different geometric forms affect the way in which we can move around a space and how it can be broken up into different areas, or zones, with different purposes.

Yin has used collaborative filtering (CF) methods and CNNs to develop intelligent interior design schemes. The research thus offers a theoretical basis for the use of geometric forms in design. The use of CNNs specifically allows texture analysis for comparing design elements.

Yin, N. (2024) ‘The application of geometric form in architectural interior environment design’, Int. J. Information and Communication Technology, Vol. 24, No. 5, pp.95–105

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

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Services Technology and Management are now available here for free:
  • An analysis of the research trends and collaboration strategy of university and industry on digital twin technology
  • Information technology governance in the government public sector: a systematic mapping of the scientific production
  • Predicting a model of agile supply chain in the service provider enterprises by factor analysis method and fuzzy cognitive map
  • Decision support or decision making? The critical decision roles of IS in autonomous vehicles
  • Service development process: an integrated perspective in developing a service process for e-commerce
  • Is time-constrained promotion actually effective? The moderating role of price discounts and previous online consumption experience
  • Design options for smart services in energy communities: a multi-criteria mapping analysis among stakeholders

Free Open Access article available: "A societal shift to the right or the political mobilisation of a shrinking minority? Explaining rise and radicalisation of the AfD in Germany"

The following paper, "A societal shift to the right or the political mobilisation of a shrinking minority? Explaining rise and radicalisation of the AfD in Germany" (International Journal of Public Policy 17(3) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

6 May 2024

Research pick: Seeing behind the mask - "Efficient masked face identification biometric systems based on ResNet and DarkNet convolutional neural networks"

During the COVID-19 pandemic, facemasks became almost ubiquitous and still are in some environments. There is a need for face recognition to be able to “see behind the mask” for security and safety. Research in the International Journal of Computational Vision and Robotics discusses the potential of new software that might be trained on a large database of photographs of individuals in different poses and holding different facial expressions, where a simulated mask has been superimposed on the image, to allow facial recognition to work despite the mask you use.

Freha Mezzoudj and Chahreddine Medjahed of the Department of Computer Science at the University Hassiba Benbouali of Chlef in Algeria, have developed a comprehensive database of masked faces, termed FEI-SM. The training set contained images of 2000 unmasked faces and 18000 “masked” faces with different types of face covering, surgical masks and consumer-type masks. The database might now be used to test biometric identification of masked individuals.

Facial recognition as a form of biometric identification is now widely used in security systems. It can be used to open one’s smartphone, for instance, or be used to allow access to a building only for accredited individuals. It can also be used by the police and other authorities to identify individuals in a given, putatively illegal, setting.

The team explains that “deep learning” a subset of artificial intelligence technology is a powerful approach to image recognition that usually stumbles when faced with a masked individual. The team has used several convolutional neural network systems – deep learning tools – based on three ResNet and two DarkNet models (ResNet18, ResNet50, ResNet101, DarkNet19, and DarkNet53) to see how successful they might be in the biometric identification of masked and unmasked faces from their database. They found that ResNet18 is the most accurate and fastest in their tests.

Mezzoudj, F. and Medjahed, C. (2024) ‘Efficient masked face identification biometric systems based on ResNet and DarkNet convolutional neural networks’, Int. J. Computational Vision and Robotics, Vol. 14, No. 3, pp.284–303.

3 May 2024

Free open access article available: "Characteristics of industrial service ecosystem practices for industrial renewal"

The following paper, "Characteristics of industrial service ecosystem practices for industrial renewal" (International Journal of Services Technology and Management 29(1) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

Special issue published: "Advanced Bio Inspired Algorithms for Biometrics"

International Journal of Biometrics 16(3/4) 2024

  • Identity authentication model from continuous keystroke pattern using CSO and LSTM network
  • Offline handwritten signature recognition based on generative adversarial networks
  • A method for recognising wrong actions of martial arts athletes based on keyframe extraction
  • Speech endpoint detection method based on logarithmic energy entropy product of adaptive sub-bands in low signal-to-noise ratio environments
  • A sparse representation-based local occlusion recognition method for athlete expressions
  • Recognition of starting movement correction for long distance runners based on human key point detection
  • Tennis players' hitting action recognition method based on multimodal data
  • Chinese named entity recognition method based on multiscale feature fusion
  • An online learning behaviour recognition method based on tag set correlation learning
  • Accurate facial expression recognition method based on perceptual hash algorithm
  • Multi-modal human motion recognition based on behaviour tree
Additional paper
  • Classification of visual attention by microsaccades using machine learning

Research pick: Signing off on autograph recognition - "Offline handwritten signature recognition based on generative adversarial networks"

The accurate validation of signed documents is important to ensuring personal privacy and digital safety and security. Offline handwritten signature recognition is now widely used in sectors like banking, healthcare, and legal proceedings. However, there remains a security risk in that a handwritten signature might easily be forged by a malicious third party. There is an urgent need in many sectors to improve the current recognition techniques so that they can identify faked autographs.

Research from China published in the International Journal of Biometrics has introduced a new approach to offline handwritten signature recognition based on Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs). This approach allows variable features such as a measure of the pen pressure and tilt angle to be used for signature recognition. Xiaoguang Jiang of the Department of Culture and Arts at Yongcheng Vocational College explains that by integrating GANs to enhance accuracy it is possible to generate realistic virtual signatures that alongside training classifiers from authentic written signatures and so improve the accuracy of the classifier.

Jianh has used a Deep Convolutional GAN (DCGAN) model and demonstrated 95 percent accuracy in tests, which is much greater than the accuracy possible with earlier models. Accurate signature recognition is critical for identity verification processes in finance, law, healthcare, and other areas. The same techniques might also be applied more esoterically to signature verification in the art world, for instance, or the digitization of historical documents to ensure authenticity and provenance.

Jiang, X. (2024) ‘Offline handwritten signature recognition based on generative adversarial networks’, Int. J. Biometrics, Vol. 16, Nos. 3/4, pp.236–255.

Free open access article available: "Subcarrier power control for URLLC communication system via multi-agent deep reinforcement learning in IoT network"

The following paper, "Subcarrier power control for URLLC communication system via multi-agent deep reinforcement learning in IoT network" (International Journal of Communication Networks and Distributed Systems 30(3) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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

2 May 2024

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing are now available here for free:
  • What predicts effectuation preferences? Disentangling individual and environmental factors and illuminating decision criteria
  • When entrepreneurship meets finance and accounting: (non-)financial information exchange between venture capital investors, business angels, incubators, accelerators, and start-ups
  • Factors affecting micro and small business distress in Austria
  • Entrepreneurial fear of failure and psychological well-being: a moderation analysis of resilience

Research pick: All the right moves in martial arts - "A method for recognising wrong actions of martial arts athletes based on keyframe extraction"

Research in the International Journal of Biometrics introduces a new method for assessing a practitioner’s precision in martial arts training. The method focuses on quickly identifying errors in the athlete’s movements and allowing their trainer to more precisely guide them to correct form. The system has been developed with a particular focus on Wushu, a collection of Chinese martial arts styles known for their complexity and precision.

Zhiqiang Li of the Department of Police Sports Teaching and Research at Jilin Police College in Changchun, China, explains how the system used advanced algorithms, including the optical flow method and shot adaptive K-means clustering. These are used to extract “key frames” from video and to then analyse texture features of the martial artist’s movements. The analysis can attain a high accuracy rate of 96.58% in detecting incorrect movements. The minimal recognition error is 1.9%, Li adds. Critically, the method is very efficient, giving the trainer or student a positive recognition within just 11 seconds or so.

The approach could be very useful in martial arts training, allowing coaches to identify errors in real-time and offer on the spot advice and guidance to their students, even if an error was difficult to spot in the class or there were ambiguity in judging it. The method could thus enhance training effectiveness and, given that incorrect actions are often associated with injury, it could also reduce the number of physical problems faced by students. The high precision will benefit the students in developing their technical proficiency but also make their participation in martial arts safer. The system will also benefit to the overall aesthetic appeal of a martial arts performances.

One might imagine that the system could be extended for refereeing purposes where there is ambiguity in judging a move or action as allowed or illegal in the particular marshal art. It would also be quite easy to imagine that such a system would be as controversial as the likes of the digital line judges used in international tennis and the video assistant referee (VAR) used in (association) football.

Li, Z. (2024) ‘A method for recognising wrong actions of martial arts athletes based on keyframe extraction’, Int. J. Biometrics, Vol. 16, Nos. 3/4, pp.256–271.

Special issue published: "Environmental Change Management with Advanced Technologies – Part 2"

International Journal of Environmental Technology and Management 27(3) 2024

  • Prediction method of change trend of energy carbon emission intensity based on time series analysis
  • Monitoring method of crop growth environment in greenhouse based on embedded 5G communication technology
  • Evaluation model of carbon emission efficiency of land intensive use based on SBM model
  • Research on spatial pattern recognition of landscape architecture based on multi-source remote sensing images
  • An accounting method of REDD reduction of renewable energy based on power flow distribution matrix
Additional papers
  • Greenhouse heating efficiency through soap bubble insulation
  • The treatment of micro-polluted waterbodies using composite flocculant

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Mechatronics and Manufacturing Systems

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Mechatronics and Manufacturing Systems are now available here for free:
  • Molten pool temperature monitoring in laser metal deposition: comparison between single wavelength and ratio pyrometry techniques
  • A review on in-situ process sensing and monitoring systems for fusion-based additive manufacturing
  • Neural network as approach for detection of non-compliant semi-finished additive manufactured parts
  • On predicting machined part accuracy from CNC machine errors using artificial neural networks
  • Integration of human factors, cognitive ergonomics, and artificial intelligence in the human-machine interface for additive manufacturing
  • Effect of material inhomogeneity on chatter stability
  • Process concatenation to reduce thermal changes in machine tools
  • Hybrid finite elements method-artificial neural network approach for hardness prediction of AA6082 friction stir welded joints
  • Machine learning approaches towards digital twin development for machining systems
  • Performance improvement techniques for neural networks in tool condition monitoring
  • A review on process models and controller design in proton-exchange membrane fuel cells
  • Physics-based simulation models for digital twin development in laser powder bed fusion
  • Relevance of single channel signals for two-colour pyrometer process monitoring of laser powder bed fusion

1 May 2024

Special issue published: "Corporate Governance Challenges in the Middle East, Including the COVID-19 Pandemic"

Journal for International Business and Entrepreneurship Development 15(4) 2023

  • A bibliometric analysis of ethical finance
  • Accounting information quality, free cash flow, and over-investment: evidence from an emerging market - a study in Iran
  • The readiness of commercial banks to the crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic: evidence from G20
  • Sustainable development and enterprise: do foreign investors care?
  • The effect of audit committee attributes and gender diversity on audit quality
  • Methodological issues in real earnings management

Free sample articles newly available from International Journal of Web Engineering and Technology

The following sample articles from the International Journal of Web Engineering and Technology are now available here for free:
  • Communication media as mediators of telework frequency and knowledge sharing in Japan under COVID-19
  • PRMF: point of interest recommendation method integrating multiple factors
  • A novel machine extraction algorithm for implicit and explicit keywords based on dynamic web metadata of scientific scholars' corpus
  • An architecture-based modelling of fault-tolerant SOA-based systems

Research pick: The ecology of industrial renewal - "Characteristics of industrial service ecosystem practices for industrial renewal"

Industry faces many problems in the current economic, sociopolitical, and environmental context. The idea of industrial renewal has thus come to the fore as an approach that might allow us to address those different challenges sitting with the new approach to understanding, known as service ecosystems.

Writing in the International Journal of Services Technology and Management, a team from Finland explains how service ecosystems might play an important part in speeding up industrial renewal. However, they add that there are many aspects of the complex social dynamics that drive these ecosystems, which must be understood before we can move ahead and which have previously been overlooked in some research.

Maaria Nuutinen, Katri Valkokari, and Maarit Halttunen of the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd, and Katariina Palomäki of Sitowise Ltd, have taken a new look at service ecosystem research. They focused on the practical aspects of industrial service ecosystems in order to help explain what they need to encompass in order to facilitate industrial renewal.

Industrial renewal refers to the process of revitalizing or rejuvenating a given industrial sector. It generally involves implementing strategies and initiatives to modernize, upgrade, or transform existing practices to allow them to adapt to changing markets, to adopt technological advancements, to take into account environmental considerations, and to face up to global competition.

The team has identified three main characteristics in service ecosystem practice that will be useful in guiding future work: accomplishment, attractiveness, and actionability. Accomplishment refers to the ongoing process of creating value within the service ecosystem by bringing together technology, data, and skills. Attractiveness pertains to the ability of the ecosystem to draw in and retain talented people in the sector. Actionability emphasizes how effective the service ecosystem is in reaching useful goals as well as helping in the process of industrial renewal.

By offering a new perspective for research in this area, the team also provides useful insights for policymakers, businesses, and others involved in a range of industrial sectors. These insights should help us to use the concept of service ecosystems to tackle global problems by accelerating industrial renewal.

Nuutinen, M., Valkokari, K., Halttunen, M. and Palomäki, K. (2024) ‘Characteristics of industrial service ecosystem practices for industrial renewal’, Int. J. Services Technology and Management, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp.76–96.

Free open access article available: "Process window development of DED-LB/M process with coaxial wire for stainless steel AISI 316L"

The following paper, "Process window development of DED-LB/M process with coaxial wire for stainless steel AISI 316L" (International Journal of Experimental Design and Process Optimisation 7(3) 2024), is freely available for download as an open access article.

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