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Decision Making in Psychiatric Reform: A Case Study of the Czech Experience

Abstract

This study examines the initial impact of a broadly participatory planning process in the Czech Republic during 2016–2017, aimed at both reducing inpatient care and expanding community mental health systems, on policy and programmatic decision making. A central focus of the study involves the trade-offs between and efforts to integrate shared decision making with evidence-based planning methods within the context of a national psychiatric reform strategy, particularly one involving a former Soviet bloc state.

Given the uniqueness of the Czech experience, an exploratory case study methodology is used, one involving ten interviews with key informants and examination of a wide variety of documents. Results include the development of broad new decision and oversight structures, and the initial implementation of community mental health services. The nation faces some of the same trade-offs found elsewhere, such as in the United States, between an inclusive participatory process, and one that systematically incorporates empirical rational and evidence and best practices within bounded parameters.

Implications for new psychiatric deinstitutionalization initiatives are identified, including development of a national mental health authority, a professional workforce, new funding strategies, multi-level service coordination, mechanisms to assure transparency, among others.

Open access
The fuzzy concept of collaborative governance: A systematic review of the state of the art

Abstract

This article contributes to the consolidation and synthesis of scholarship on collaborative governance by expanding our knowledge of how the term is used in the academic literature and policy documents in a range of European countries. It adds value to the existing reviews of the field by conducting a systematic literature review on a corpus of over 700 article abstracts and a traditional literature review identifying five key analytical dimensions. The article also provides an exploratory analysis of grey literature hitherto outside the purview of researchers and considers the linguistic and cultural connotations that alter the meaning of the term when translated into new contexts in ten EU/EFTA countries. Findings indicate heterogeneity and fuzziness in the way the concept is used. The article argues that explicit positions with respect to five main analytical dimensions and taking into account the national connotations that the term carries across political systems would inject more clarity into the academic discourse. This, in turn, will help policymakers to make informed use of the concept, especially in multi-national policy-making arenas.

Open access
The influence of age factors on the reform of the public service of Ukraine

Abstract

It had been established that the heads of institutions should form teams of workers of different generations with different expectations and methods of work in the context of reforming the public service. The periods of forming generations have been set on the basis of literary sources, such as: Generation X (the period up to 1980); Generation Y (from 1981 to 1996); and Generation Z (after 1997). The most important criteria which form the characteristics of public servants have been singled out, and common and distinctive traits of Generations X, Y, and Z have been systematized. The distribution of the number of public servants in Ukraine has been analyzed by gender, age and the category of position. Based on the use of correlation-regression analysis, the tendency of changes in the share of state servants of Ukraine by age category up to 2020 was investigated. This made it possible to confirm the suggested hypothesis of the dependence of the effective reform of the Ukrainian public service on the effective interaction and cooperation of all generations of public servants. The main requirements for a public institution in which the employees of the new generation will work have been systematized.

Open access
Analysis of Happiness in EU Countries Using the Multi-Model Classification based on Models of Symbolic Data

Abstract

The results of happiness analysis are presented in the form of a World Happiness Report that covers 156 countries and 17 different indicators. In the article model-based clustering ensemble is built to determine what selected European countries have similar patterns of happiness. The results are analyzed using multidimensional scaling and a decision tree to find out what factors determine cluster memberships. In the empirical part, three clusters were detected The first contains countries: Austria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. They have the highest values for all the variables, except the negative affect. The second cluster contains seven countries: Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. This cluster is also the most homogeneous one. The third cluster contains eight countries: Cyprus, the Czech Republic, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain.

Open access
Beyond the Politics of Inclusion: The Policy Environment and the Fate of Children with Disability in the Ghanaian Educational System

Abstract

The 1992 constitution of Ghana and other national legislative instruments guarantee and promote free compulsory universal basic education for all Ghanaian children irrespective of their background. This has been the practice for many years. Even though these policies have chalked some successes, especially regarding school attendance and gender parity, there still remains some level of uncertainty as to whether all Ghanaian children, especially those with disabilities, benefit from these policies. Using secondary information available, the paper provides an overview of the existing legislative instruments that seek to promote the adoption of inclusive education policy in Ghana. Evidence from the literature reveals that there are restrictions within the current policy provisions which make inclusive education not possible for children living with disabilities. The paper concludes and recommends that there should be some modifications or new developments of inclusive education to enable the system to accommodate the diverse educational needs of children with disabilities.

Open access
Challenges and Prospects of Private Broadcast Media Ownership in Nigeria: A Study of Stations in Port Harcourt

Abstract

Ownership of the media was vested with the government, especially in the areas of issuance of licenses and renewal of such licenses, among others, through the National Broadcasting Commission empowered to carry out such salient responsibility. The empowerment of NBC through the enabling Decree in 1992 saw the emergence of private broadcast stations in Nigeria. But years after the deregulation of the broadcast media in Nigeria, the private broadcast stations and ownership are still bedeviled with some challenges, which If not well addressed, will leave them at cross roads; but if addressed properly, the sky would be too small to be their limit. To realize these, the study examined the challenges and prospects of private broadcast media using Africa Independent Television (AIT) and Rhythm 93.7fm as case studies. The survey method was used to expose the challenges faced by these stations and their prospects. In course of the study, the following findings, interalia, were discovered: that the private broadcast outfits are faced with challenges arising from poor facilities, government regulation and legislations, expensive equipment, welfare and debts. However, the study discovered that progress could be made if enabling environment would be created for them to strive.

Open access
Development of Creation of Executive Function-EF Model for Preschool Children through the Participation Process of the School under Suan Dusit University’s Network

Abstract

The objectives of this research were to create the trial and develop the creation of Executive Function-EF Model. The research consisted of 3 procedures, which were 1) The formation of sample, which was teachers and parents from the school under Suan Dusit University’s Network; 2) The trial of sample, which was children between 3-5 years old from 6 schools under Suan Dusit University’s Network; and 3) The development of key informants, which were the Executive Function-EF Model specialists in terms of measurement and evaluation and early childhood education, including the representatives of teacher, administrator, and parents from the school under Suan Dusit University’s Network. The content analysis was used in the qualitative data analysis. The average, standard deviation, and dependent t-test were used in the quantitative data analysis. The research results found that 1. The creation of Executive Function-EF Model consisted of 4 components, which were principle, objective, learning process, and evaluation; 2. The trial result of the creation of Executive Function-EF Model was that the development of creation of Executive Function-EF Model of preschool children in the overall image and each aspect after using the model was higher than before using the model with the statistically significance level of .001 and 3. The result of the development of creation of Executive Function-EF Model was that the creation of Executive Function-EF Model that was developed was suitable to be used and had the possibility to be put into practice in a high level.

Open access
Factors in the Design of Good Toys for Kids Aged 0-3 Years

Abstract

The importance of ages 0-3 years of child life is considered the cornerstone of all dimensions of health for the rest of the child’s life, which is the period in which children grow rapidly and there are many changes in every aspect of development. The purpose of this study is to learn the factors that are relevant to the design of toys for kids aged 0-3 years from development, behavior of children, and the characteristics of children’s toys that are suitable for the ages, including safety. The researcher studied the guidelines for the design of kid’s toys that were appropriate to the age range. This research is a combination that uses both quantitative and qualitative methods. The results of the study after trying playing toy sets from the study of toy design factors in kids aged 0-3 from 230 samples by observing behavior from a total of 80 children, then synthesizing the data for use in the design process, and evaluating by the parents of 150 children, found that it was at a good level, with average value (x̄= 4.17, SD = 0.39). When comparing with playing toy samples from the Toy Industry Association of Thailand, it was found that there was a moderate level of satisfaction with the mean of 3.42 (x̄= 3.41, SD = 0.61), and statistically significant at 0.05 level in all aspects. In conclusion, toys for kids in the age range of 0-3 years resulting from the study of 3 factors in toy design: development and behavior, playing methods, and safety are important links between each other. Development and behavior of children are consistent with the play methods because they affect the physical development of children by age, and safety in the design of toys is able to prevent the danger that could occur to kids.

Open access
Forecasting the Sales of Console Games for the Italian Market

Abstract

In videogames industry, time series analysis can be very useful in determining the general evolution and behaviour of the market dynamics. These methods are applicable to any time series forecasting problem, regardless of the application sector. This article discusses time series approaches to forecast the sales of console games for the Italian market. In particular two univariate techniques were evaluated, exponential smoothing and the SARIMA technique. The aim is to exploit the capabilities of these statistical methods in order to have a comparison of the results and to choose the most accurate model through an ex-post evaluation. Using monthly time-series data from November 2005 to September 2017, the selection of the most suitable model was indicated by the smallest value of the measures of accuracy (MAPE, sMAPE, RMSE) for the out-of-sample observations regarding the period October 2017-September 2018. The implementation of the models was done using Forecast PRO and Gretl. The time series involved is related to the sales regarding the first party manufacturers of consoles and handhelds (Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo).

Open access