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Technology Roadmaps, Innovation Journeys, and Nanoworld: A Spatio-temporal Consolidation of the EC Nanotechnology Policy

Abstract

Technology roadmaps have become an essential part of the European Commission’s (EC) nanotechnology policy strategies. They represent socio-technical landscapes and evolving pathways, suggesting the underlying or otherwise supportive metaphorical patterns and narrative structures. For the same reason, however, roadmaps are problematic assemblages: they can simplify and distort reality, and filter things that don’t fit. The presented study combines cognitive linguistics with narratology to scrutinise the European Commission’s nanotechnology roadmapping as a discursive formation. It targets the systematic metaphors in approximately two-hundred news and reports on nanotechnology, compiled ad hoc from the CORDIS database (between the years 1999–2015). It is argued that the identified metaphors correspond to a discourse topology of ‘locations’, ‘events’, and their structures, especially as regards to the dilemma of ‘path dependence’, overcoming ‘knowledge gaps’, and reaching ‘nanoworld’. These are accompanied by a narrative climax of developing mature science policy model, in the arrangement of actions and roles for the European governments, science (nanotechnology), policy, and the public. The study demonstrates how systematic metaphors engage all the actors in the narrative of ‘innovation journey’ to form stabilised structures of meaning, that is, spatio-temporal consolidation of nanotechnology policy. It is imperative to continuously assess the context of such consolidation, being less overt but not necessarily less effective, in privileging some meanings, interests, and practices over the others, thereby excluding other political alternatives.

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Heat stress and occupational health and safety – spatial and temporal differentiation

Abstract

Evidence of climatic health hazards on the general population has been discussed in many studies but limited focus is placed on developing a relationship between climate and its effects on occupational health. Long working hours with high physical activity can cause health problems for workers ranging from mild heat cramps to severe heat stroke leading to death. The paper presents the possible risk of heat hazard to outdoor workers, using the example of Warsaw. The heat stress hazard, defined by WBGT values above 26 and 28°C and UTCI above 32 and 38°C, is assessed from two perspectives: its spatial distribution on a local scale and its temporal changes during the 21st century due to climate change. City centre and industrial districts were identified as the places with the greatest heat stress hazard. The number of heat stress days in a year (as predicted for the 21st century) is increasing, meaning that heat-related illnesses are more likely to have a direct impact on workers’ health.

Open access
Remediating Past Images. The Temporality of “Found Footage” in Gábor Bódy’s American Torso

Abstract

Along Laura U. Marks’s thoughts on the “disappearing image” as embodied experience, the article proposes to bring into discussion particular modes of occurrence of “past images,” whether in form of the use of archival/found footage or of creating visual archaisms in the spirit of archival recordings, within the practice of the Hungarian experimental film making of the 1970s and 1980s, more speciflcally, in Gábor Bódy’s films. The return to archival/found footage as well as the production of visual archaisms reveal an attempt of remediation (Bolter and Grusin) that goes beyond the cultural responsibility of preservation: it confronts the film medium with its materiality, historicity, and temporality, and creates productive tensions between the private and the historical, between the pre-cinematic and the texture of motion pictures, between the documentary value of the image and its rhetorical dimension. The paper argues that the authenticity of the moving image in Gábor Bódy’s American Torso (Amerikai anzix, 1975) is achieved through a special combination of the immediacy and the hypermediacy of experience. Bódy’s interest in “past images” goes beyond the intention of experimentation with the medium; it is aimed at a profound, reconsidered archaeology of the image and a distinct sensing of the cinema.

Open access
Temporal variability of sewage sludge heavy metal content from Greek wastewater treatment plants

Abstract

The aim of this study was to evaluate the temporal variations of selected heavy metals level in anaerobic fermented and dewatered sewage sludge. Sewage sludge samples were collected in different seasons and years from three municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) located in Northern Greece, in Kavala (Kavala and Palio localities) and Drama (Drama locality) Prefectures. An investigation of the potential of sludge utilization in agriculture was performed, based on the comparison of average total heavy metal concentrations and of chromium species (hexavalent, trivalent) concentrations with the allowed values according to the Council Directive 86/278/EEC and Greek national legislation (Joint Cabinet Decision 80568/4225/91) guidelines. In this regard, all the investigated heavy metals (Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, Zn, Hg) and chromium species Cr(VI) and Cr(III) have average concentrations (dry matter weight) well below the legislated thresholds for soil application, as following: 2.12 mg kg−1 Cd; 103.7 mg kg−1 Cr; 136.4 mg kg−1 Cu; < 0.2 mg kg−1 Hg; 29.1 mg kg−1 Ni; 62.0 mg kg−1 Pb; 1253.2 mg kg−1 Zn; 1.56 mg kg−1 Cr(VI) and 115.7 mg kg−1 Cr(III). Values of relative standard deviation (RSD) indicate a low or moderate temporal variability for domestic-related metals Zn (10.3-14.7%), Pb (27.9-44.5%) and Cu (33.5-34.2%), and high variability for the metals of mixed origin or predominantly resulted from commercial activities, such as Ni (42.4-50.7%), Cd (44.3-85.5%) and Cr (58.2-102.0%). For some elements the seasonal occurrence pattern is the same for Kavala and Palio sludge, as following: a) Cd and Cr: spring>summer>winter; b) Cu, Ni and Pb: winter>spring>summer. On average, in summer months (dry season) metal concentrations are lower than in spring and winter (wet seasons), with the exception of Zn. For Kavala and Palio the results demonstrate that the increased number of inhabitants (almost doubled) in summer time due to tourism does not influence the metal levels in sludge. Comparing the results obtained for similar spring-summer-winter sequences in 2007 and 2010/11 and for the spring season in 2007, 2008 and 2010, it can be noticed that, in general, the average heavy metal contents show an increasing tendency towards the last year. In all the measurement periods, the Palio sludge had the highest metal contents and Kavala sludge the lowest, leading to the conclusion that the WWTP operating process rather than population has a significant effect upon the heavy metal content of sludge. Cr(VI)/Cr(total) concentration ratios are higher for Kavala sludge in the majority of sampling campaigns, followed by Drama and Palio sludge. The metals which present moderate to strong positive correlation have common origin, which could be a domestic-commercial mixed source.

Open access
Spatial and Temporal Features of the Timiş River (Banat, Romania) Liquid Flow Regime

ABSTRACT

This paper presents an analysis of the flow regime of the Timiş River in Romania. The analysis was based on hydrological data provided by the National Institute of Hydrology and Water Management in specialized publications (hydrological yearbooks or online series). The data were supplemented by personal observations in the field. The following leakage parameters were analyzed: average flow (monthly, seasonal, annual), maximum flow (especially flash floods) and minimum leakage. This paper highlights the link between hydrological parameters and conditioning factors of spatial distribution (characteristics of the geological substratum, relief units, elevation, slope) and temporal variation of flow (in function of type of supply, and variability and variation of climatic conditions).

Open access
Spatio-temporal dynamics of vegetation cover in North-West Algeria using remote sensing data

Abstract

Land cover change is the result of complex interactions between social and environmental systems which change over time. While climatic and biophysics phenomena were for a long time the principal factor of land transformations, human activities are today the origin of the major part of land transformation which affects natural ecosystems.

Quantification of natural and anthropogenic impacts on vegetation cover is often hampered by logistical issues, including (1) the difficulty of systematically monitoring the effects over large areas and (2) the lack of comparison sites needed to evaluate the effect of the factors.

The effective procedure for measuring the degree of environmental change due to natural factors and human activities is the multitemporal study of vegetation cover. For this purpose, the aim of this work is the analysis of the evolution of land cover using remote sensing techniques, in order to better understand the respective role of natural and anthropogenic factors controlling this evolution.

A spatio-temporal land cover dynamics study on a regional scale in Oranie, using Landsat data for two periods (1984–2000) and (2000–2011) was conducted. The images of the vegetation index were classified into three classes based on Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) values and analysed using image difference approach.

The result shows that the vegetation cover was changed. An intensive regression of the woody vegetation and forest land resulted in -22.5% of the area being lost between 1984 and 2000, 1,271 km2 was converted into scrub formations and 306 km2 into bare soil. On the other hand, this class increased by around 45% between 2000 and 2011, these evolutions resulting from the development of scrub groups with an area of 1,875.7 km2.

Open access
Street Art and Graffiti in the Context of a City

Abstract

The paper presents data from interviews conducted in 2006–2007 with four representatives of the Prague street art and graffiti scene who worked in the Czech capital city at the beginning of the 2000s. Part of the article deals with creative activities in the Prague subway where most of the interviewed authors created their works. The author thus offers the perspective of the authors of the Prague street art and graffiti scenes and presents their view of the (il)legal works of art from around ten years ago in the context of the current discourse in social sciences. Over the last twenty years, this discourse has evolved to such an extent that it now enables to see the phenomenon of urban public works of art as a phenomenon full of paradoxes. Graffiti and street art therefore cannot be interpreted only from the point of view of legality or the art of resistance. Their definition must remain sufficiently open, since certain ambivalence, contradiction and ghostliness are characteristic of it equally as of life in a modern global city that is inherently tied to it.

Open access
Authenticity in the Perspective of Sport Tourism: Some Selected Examples

Abstract

Authenticity is usually understood as something similar to truth, or as a kind of ability of one “to be oneself”. However, for the philosophical approach, authenticity presents a more complex and complicated term. This conception has been followed in existentialism and fundamental ontology, where it has been examined and analyzed in depth (especially by Martin Heidegger). This paper deals with the search for some potentiality of the authentic modus of being through the practice of some forms of sport tourism. We selected and described four model types of sport tourism activities. Then, we designed and selected some factors of authenticity. The evaluation of authenticity within the selected activities according to the factors was applied in a two-round process of evaluation. The results of the process are explained and discussed. In conclusion, authenticity is presented as a concept that is not strongly influenced by outer settings, but is rather strongly connected with personal attunement and individual (or group) perception of the outer world.

Open access
A modified filter SQP method as a tool for optimal control of nonlinear systems with spatio-temporal dynamics

A modified filter SQP method as a tool for optimal control of nonlinear systems with spatio-temporal dynamics

Our aim is to adapt Fletcher's filter approach to solve optimal control problems for systems described by nonlinear Partial Differential Equations (PDEs) with state constraints. To this end, we propose a number of modifications of the filter approach, which are well suited for our purposes. Then, we discuss possible ways of cooperation between the filter method and a PDE solver, and one of them is selected and tested.

Open access
Temporal Changes of Land Cover in Relation to Chosen Environmental Variables in Different Types of Landscape

REFERENCES Baudry J., 1993, Landscape dynamics and farming systems: problems of relating patterns and predicting ecological changes, in: Bunce R.G.H., Ryszkowski L., Paoletti M.G. (ed.) Landscape Ecology and Agroecosystems. M.G. Lewis Publishers, Boca Raton. Fu B., Zhang Q., Chen L., Zhao W., Gulinck H., Liu G., Yang Q., Zhu Y., 2006, Temporal change in land use and its relationship to slope degree and soil type in a small catchment on the Loess Plateau of China. Catena , 65, 41-48. Giętkowski T., Zachwatowicz M., (in press), Przemiany

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