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Article
Publication date: 7 March 2016

Sun Bingzhen and Ma Weimin

The purpose of this paper is to present a new method for evaluation of emergency plans for unconventional emergency events by using the soft fuzzy rough set theory and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a new method for evaluation of emergency plans for unconventional emergency events by using the soft fuzzy rough set theory and methodology.

Design/methodology/approach

In response to the problems of insufficient risk identification, incomplete and inaccurate data and different preference of decision makers, a new model for emergency plan evaluation is established by combining soft set theory with classical fuzzy rough set theory. Moreover, by combining the TOPSIS method with soft fuzzy rough set theory, the score value of the soft fuzzy lower and upper approximation is defined for the optimal object and the worst object. Finally, emergency plans are comprehensively evaluated according to the soft close degree of the soft fuzzy rough set theory.

Findings

This paper presents a new perspective on emergency management decision making in unconventional emergency events. Also, the paper provides an effective model for evaluating emergency plans for unconventional events.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to decision making in emergency management of unconventional emergency events. The model is useful for dealing with decision making with uncertain information.

Details

Kybernetes, vol. 45 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0368-492X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 21 March 2019

Muddasar Anwar, Toufik Al Khawli, Irfan Hussain, Dongming Gan and Federico Renda

This paper aims to present a soft closed-chain modular gripper for robotic pick-and-place applications. The proposed biomimetic gripper design is inspired by the Fin Ray…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present a soft closed-chain modular gripper for robotic pick-and-place applications. The proposed biomimetic gripper design is inspired by the Fin Ray effect, derived from fish fins physiology. It is composed of three axisymmetric fingers, actuated with a single actuator. Each finger has a modular under-actuated closed-chain structure. The finger structure is compliant in contact normal direction, with stiff crossbeams reorienting to help the finger structure conform around objects.

Design/methodology/approach

Starting with the design and development of the proposed gripper, a consequent mathematical representation consisting of closed-chain forward and inverse kinematics is detailed. The proposed mathematical framework is validated through the finite element modeling simulations. Additionally, a set of experiments was conducted to compare the simulated and prototype finger trajectories, as well as to assess qualitative grasping ability.

Findings

Key Findings are the presented mathematical model for closed-loop chain mechanisms, as well as design and optimization guidelines to develop controlled closed-chain grippers.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed methodology and mathematical model could be taken as a fundamental modular base block to explore similar distributed degrees of freedom (DOF) closed-chain manipulators and grippers. The enhanced kinematic model contributes to optimized dynamics and control of soft closed-chain grasping mechanisms.

Practical implications

The approach is aimed to improve the development of soft grippers that are required to grasp complex objects found in human–robot cooperation and collaborative robot (cobot) applications.

Originality/value

The proposed closed-chain mathematical framework is based on distributed DOFs instead of the conventional lumped joint approach. This is to better optimize and understand the kinematics of soft robotic mechanisms.

Details

Industrial Robot: the international journal of robotics research and application, vol. 46 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 30 October 2018

Maurice Yolles

Complex systems adapt to survive, but little comparative literature exists on various approaches. Adaptive complex systems are generic, this referring to propositions…

Abstract

Purpose

Complex systems adapt to survive, but little comparative literature exists on various approaches. Adaptive complex systems are generic, this referring to propositions concerning their bounded instability, adaptability and viability. Two classes of adaptive complex system theories exist: hard and soft. Hard complexity theories include Complex Adaptive Systems (CAS) and Viability Theory, and softer theories, which we refer to as Viable Systems Theories (VSTs), that include Management Cybernetics at one extreme and Humanism at the other. This paper has a dual purpose distributed across two parts. In Part 1, the purpose of this paper is to identify the conditions for the complementarity of the two classes of theory. In Part 2, the purpose is to explore (in part using Agency Theory) the two classes of theory and their proposed complexity continuum.

Design/methodology/approach

A detailed analysis of the literature permits a distinction between hard and softer approaches towards modelling complex social systems. Hard theories are human-incommensurable, while soft ones are human-commensurable, therefore more closely related to the human condition. The characteristics that differentiate between hard and soft approaches are identified.

Findings

Hard theories are more restrictive than the softer theories. The latter can embrace degrees of “softness” and it is explained how hard and soft approaches can be mixed, sometimes creating Harmony.

Originality/value

There are very few explorations of the relationship between hard and soft approaches to complexity theory, and even fewer that draw in the notion of harmony.

Details

Kybernetes, vol. 48 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0368-492X

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 13 September 2019

Melvin Vooren, Carla Haelermans, Wim Groot and Henriette Maassen van den Brink

The purpose of this paper is to present the results of a discrete choice experiment (DCE) on the competencies of potential information technology (IT)-retrainees. The…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present the results of a discrete choice experiment (DCE) on the competencies of potential information technology (IT)-retrainees. The results give insights in the monetary value and relative returns to both soft and hard skills.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors apply a DCE in which the authors propose seven pairs of hypothetical candidates to employers based in the municipality of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. These hypothetical candidates differ on six observable skill attributes and have different starting wages. The authors use the inference from the DCE to calculate the marginal rates of substitution (MRS). The MRS gives an indication of the monetary value of each skill attribute.

Findings

Employers prefer a candidate who possesses a degree in an exact field over a similar candidate from another discipline. Programming experience from previous jobs is the most highly valued characteristic for an IT-retrainee. Employers would pay a candidate with basic programming experience a 53 percent higher starting wage. The most high-valued soft skill is listening skills, for which employers are willing to pay a 46 percent higher wage. The results of this paper show that both hard and soft skills are important, but not all soft skills are equally important.

Originality/value

The results on the returns to skills provide guidelines to tailor IT training and retraining programs to the needs of the business environment. A key strength of this paper is that the authors have information on the preference orderings for different skills and kinds of experience.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 40 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 16 November 2020

Mohamed Ezzeldin, Ayman Assem and Sherif Abdelmohsen

Conventional approaches of evaluating spatial layout configurations typically involved universal understandings of aspects like connectivity, proximity and visibility…

Abstract

Purpose

Conventional approaches of evaluating spatial layout configurations typically involved universal understandings of aspects like connectivity, proximity and visibility, while possibly discarding both partially true solutions and ranges of parameters affecting detailed spatial relations. With the growing need to address spatial uncertainty and ambiguity, the incorporation of methods that embrace soft qualities in design is becoming increasingly significant in spatial layout planning.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors introduce a fuzzy-based approach for the automated assessment of architectural spatial layout configurations while addressing ambiguity in layout design. The authors evaluate soft interdependent design qualities like connectedness, enclosure and spaciousness to satisfy multiple mutually inclusive criteria and account for all logical solutions without discarding likely or less likely solutions. The authors analyze spatial entities, parameters and relations and identify rulesets for logical configurations using linguistic variables, fuzzy sets, membership functions and descriptive rule blocks. As a case study, the authors use grasshopper and fuzzyTECH to represent four pilot layout alternates with varying attributes and a case study focusing on one specific spatial criterion.

Findings

Multiple complex and nuanced spatial relations were inferred by evaluating spatial outputs and their inherent discrepancies and correlations, thus confirming the assumption that fuzzy-based systems could potentially satisfy multiple mutually inclusive criteria and account for exhaustive logical solutions without discarding preferable, likely or less likely solutions.

Originality/value

Most precedent approaches focus on spatial layout design from an occupancy-centered perspective, where occupancy patterns and possibilities are identified in loosely defined spaces or behavioral usage patterns. The added value in this paper involves including a wide array of spatial inputs to describe soft spatial qualities using nuanced rule-based descriptors.

Details

Archnet-IJAR: International Journal of Architectural Research, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2631-6862

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 2 December 2019

Frank Fitzpatrick

Abstract

Details

Understanding Intercultural Interaction: An Analysis of Key Concepts
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-397-0

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Article
Publication date: 28 August 2020

Ba-Phu Nguyen, Ananta Man Singh Pradhan, Tan Hung Nguyen, Nhat-Phi Doan, Van-Quang Nguyen and Thanh-Canh Huynh

The consolidation behavior of prefabricated vertical drain (PVD)-installed soft deposits mainly depends on the PVD performance. The purpose of this study is to propose a…

Abstract

Purpose

The consolidation behavior of prefabricated vertical drain (PVD)-installed soft deposits mainly depends on the PVD performance. The purpose of this study is to propose a numerical solution for the consolidation of PVD-installed soft soil using the large-strain theory, in which the reduction of discharge capacity of PVD according to depth and time is simultaneously considered.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed solution also takes into account the general constitute relationship of soft soil. Subsequently, the proposed solution is applied to analyze and compare with the monitoring data of two cases, one is the experimental test and another is the test embankment in Saga airport.

Findings

The results show that the reduction of PVD discharge capacity according to depth and time increased the duration required to achieve a certain degree of consolidation. The consolidation rate is more sensitive to the reduction of PVD discharge capacity according to time than that according to the depth. The effects of the reduction of PVD discharge capacity according to depth are more evident when PVD discharge capacity decreases. The predicted results using the proposed numerical solution were validated well with the monitoring data for both cases in verification.

Research limitations/implications

In this study, the variation of PVD discharge capacity is only considered in one-dimensional consolidation. However, it is challenging to implement a general expression for discharge capacity variation according to time in the two-dimensional numerical solution (two-dimensional plane strain model). This is the motivation for further study.

Practical implications

A geotechnical engineer could use the proposed numerical solution to predict the consolidation behavior of the drainage-improved soft deposit considering the PVD discharge capacity variation.

Originality/value

The large-strain consolidation of PVD-installed soft deposits could be predicted well by using the proposed numerical solution considering the PVD discharge capacity variations according to depth and time.

Details

Engineering Computations, vol. 38 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-4401

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 3 March 2020

Mohammad Reza Fathi, Mohammad Hasan Maleki, Seyed Mohammad Sobhani and Can Deniz Koksal

The purpose of this study is to formulate exploratory scenarios of Operations Research through the critical uncertainty approach and Soft Systems Methodology.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to formulate exploratory scenarios of Operations Research through the critical uncertainty approach and Soft Systems Methodology.

Design/methodology/approach

In this study, to formulate plausible scenarios, the discipline of operation research internal and external experts’ opinions of this field have been gathered through Delphi approach and uncertainty questionnaires. After use of the most important uncertainties, plausible scenarios of operations research have been mapped with the help of experts through co-thinking workshops.

Findings

Four scenarios are presented in this study. These scenarios include Solar System, Esfandiar's Eye, Rival’s Setraps and Legendary Simurgh. Naturally, the imagination of such a unitary future for all academic communities is an expectation far from reality, and given the conditions of each of these futures or any integration of them is imaginable.

Originality/value

Operations Research models have been faced with variously multiple changes since its emergence until now. Investigation into the future of operations research on the necessity for his planning has not received a reasonable notice in the literature. Sporadic activities that have been carried out are also lacking in the necessary methodology. Also, there has been no research about future study using the soft Operation Research tools (Soft Systems Methodology).

Details

foresight, vol. 22 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 2 September 2014

Christopher Bajada and Rowan Trayler

The social and economic disadvantages confronted by many Indigenous Australians are well known. A close look at Indigenous employment highlights that Indigenous…

Abstract

Purpose

The social and economic disadvantages confronted by many Indigenous Australians are well known. A close look at Indigenous employment highlights that Indigenous Australians are substantially under-represented in the technical and professional areas of business and management. Closing the gap and improving the social and economic outcomes requires a greater focus in these areas. The purpose of this paper is to outline the design of an innovative undergraduate business degree for Indigenous students that: meets the targets set by government, produces the “T-shaped” graduate expected by business (disciplinary and interdisciplinary knowledge and soft skills), addresses the employment needs of the Indigenous community and provides the building blocks for Indigenous students to enrol in post-graduate business courses. Australians is well known. A close look at Indigenous employment highlights that Indigenous Australians are substantially under-represented in the technical and professional areas of business and management. Closing the gap and improving the social and economic outcomes requires a greater focus in these areas. This paper outlines the design of an innovative undergraduate business degree for Indigenous students that: (i) meets the targets set by government; (ii) produces the “T-shaped” graduate expected by business (disciplinary and interdisciplinary knowledge and soft skills); (iii) addresses the employment needs of the Indigenous community; and (iv) provides the building blocks for Indigenous students to enrol in post-graduate business courses.

Design/methodology/approach

The development of the Bachelor of Business Administration (Indigenous) provided an opportunity to address the needs of Indigenous Australians in a curriculum that is not only interdisciplinary but also taught by indigenous and non-Indigenous academics. The paper outlines how the review was shaped, the innovative mode of delivery and the interdisciplinary nature of the curriculum. Administration (Indigenous) provided an opportunity to address the needs of Indigenous Australians in a curriculum that is not only interdisciplinary but also taught by indigenous and non-Indigenous academics.

Findings

This course provides an integrated approach to business education focusing on the professional, technical and managerial roles in business that is in such short supply in Indigenous communities. The course contextualises the study of business within an Indigenous perspective to demonstrate how Indigenous studies not only contributes to empowering the individual but also how business education plays a critical role in repositioning Indigenous people in their local communities and society more broadly empowering the individual but also how business education plays a critical role in repositioning Indigenous people in their local communities and society more broadly.

Originality/value

This paper demonstrates an integrated approach to business education focusing on the professional, technical and managerial roles in business that are in short supply in Indigenous communities.

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Article
Publication date: 3 September 2018

Ines Albandea and Jean-François Giret

The purpose of this paper is to construct soft-skill indicators and measure their effects on graduates’ earnings using survey data from a sample of master’s degree

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to construct soft-skill indicators and measure their effects on graduates’ earnings using survey data from a sample of master’s degree graduates in France.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors use a quantile analysis to measure the effects of soft skills on income.

Findings

Certain soft skills explain a proportion of the earnings of recent master’s graduates. In particular, they influence the highest salaries and are important for the most highly skilled jobs.

Research limitations/implications

Most of these soft skills are measured using declarative responses and may result from the feeling of having skills rather than actually possessing the skill. Moreover, this paper only looks at graduates who are employed, and a deficit in soft skills may be more penalising for job seekers.

Social implications

While some young people take advantage of soft skills early and benefit from them in the labour market, it is likely that it is even more important for those less endowed with these skills to further develop them before entering the labour market.

Originality/value

This research illustrates the heterogeneous nature of the skills that young post-secondary graduates acquire. French diplomas do not seem to homogenise all of the skills that young people develop through their academic and professional experiences.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 39 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

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