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Open access

Bin Liu and Zhongbin Li

Abstract

Purpose – This study aimed to assess the impact of director-generals’ human and social capitals on the organizational performance of farmers’ cooperatives in Fujian Province. Design/Methodology/Approach – Questionnaire survey data of 303 standard cooperatives in nine cities of Fujian Province were statistically analyzed.

Findings – We identified that director-generals’ human and social capitals affect all four dimensions of cooperative performance, through the mediating role of management effectiveness.

Practical Implications – We offer suggestions and measures for improving cooperatives’ performance by enhancing the human and social capitals of director-generals. Based on China’s national conditions, we propose measures to improve director-generals’ human and social capitals by the Internal trust, Government policy support, and Business network (IGB) model, which emphasizes establishing a social network of cooperatives’ director-generals, accumulating social capital, and promoting cooperative development through internal members, government departments, and commercial organizations.

Open access

Shaocheng Tong, Changliang Liu and Yongming Li

Robust adaptive fuzzy filters output feedback control of strict-feedback nonlinear systems

In this paper, an adaptive fuzzy robust output feedback control approach is proposed for a class of single input single output (SISO) strict-feedback nonlinear systems without measurements of states. The nonlinear systems addressed in this paper are assumed to possess unstructured uncertainties, unmodeled dynamics and dynamic disturbances, where the unstructured uncertainties are not linearly parameterized, and no prior knowledge of their bounds is available. In recursive design, fuzzy logic systems are used to approximate unstructured uncertainties, and K-filters are designed to estimate unmeasured states. By combining backstepping design and a small-gain theorem, a stable adaptive fuzzy output feedback control scheme is developed. It is proven that the proposed adaptive fuzzy control approach can guarantee the all the signals in the closed-loop system are uniformly ultimately bounded, and the output of the controlled system converges to a small neighborhood of the origin. The effectiveness of the proposed approach is illustrated by a simulation example and some comparisons.

Open access

Kai Li Liu

Abstract

This study used interviews to explore how 10 Taiwanese college students' intercultural competence was developed after participating in an intercultural extracurricular activity designed with a purpose to facilitate foreign students’ study in Taiwan and to promote meaningful home-foreign student contacts. In-depth information and narratives from the interviews were collected as evidence of intercultural competence development. The results showed all the interviewees appreciated the experience and felt it to have been of value to them in terms of building international friendships, heightening their intercultural awareness and the benefits of intercultural competence, and having more appreciation and better understanding of Taiwanese culture. Students also realized that a lack of understanding of Taiwanese culture could exacerbate communication difficulties. Students thus became aware of the importance of describing Taiwanese cultural practices in English and realized that more language practice was necessary for smoother communication. Suggestions for both extracurricular activities and language programs improvement in the future were also provided in the conclusion.

Open access

Li-Feng Yang, Jing-Ying Liu and Yan-Hui Liu

Abstract

Objective

The aim of this study was to explore whether positive emotion mediates the relationship between job burnout and turnover intentions among Chinese nurses.

Methods

A cross-sectional survey was conducted in the present study. Full-time registered nurses (n = 150) from Grade A hospitals in Tianjin were surveyed. Pearson correlation, hierarchical regression analyses, and the Sobel test were used in the study.

Results

The results illustrated that positive emotion mediated the relationship between burnout and nurses’ turnover intention.

Conclusions

Nursing administrators should pay more attention to the benefits of positive emotions on working motivation. It is helpful to relieve burnout in the working process so that nurses are willing to remain in their current employment.

Open access

Li H. Wang, Hao Liu and Li Li

Abstract

A carbon-based solid acid catalyst was prepared by the sulfonation of carbonized seed shells of Jatropha curcas (J. curcas L.). The structure of amorphous carbon consisting of polycyclic aromatic carbon sheets attached a high density of acidic SO3H groups (2.0 mmol · g−1) was identified with scanning electron microscopy (SEM), fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, powder X-ray diffraction (XRD), and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The performance of the solid acid catalyst was evaluated for biodiesel production in the esterification of oleic acid with methanol. 95.7% yield of biodiesel was obtained after 2 h reaction and the conversions with reused catalyst varied in the range of 95.7% to 95.1%, showing better activity and stability than commercial catalyst amberlyst-46. It was also observed that the prepared catalyst showed enhanced activity in the transesterification of triolein with methanol when compared with other solid acid catalysts. A synergistic effect results from the high density of SO3H groups and the good access of reactants to the acidic sites can be used to explain the excellent catalytic activity, as well as the strong affinity between the hydrophilic reactants and the neutral OH groups bonded to the polycyclic aromatic carbon rings.