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Assault, Battery, And Crimes Against Persons

Assignment Instructions

Write a four to six (4-6) page paper in which you:

  1. Compare and contrast the key similarities and differences between the crime of assault and the crime of battery. Provide one (1) example of each crime to support your response.
  2. Determine whether or not the jurisdiction in which the crime has occurred should consider the man’s actions as assault. Next, determine whether or not the jurisdiction should punish the man’s actions as battery. Justify your response.
  3. Suggest one (1) different fact pattern that would change the scenario from assault and / or battery to consensual touching. Support the validity of your response.

Consider the following change to the scenario. (A) is held against her will.

  1. Discuss the crime of false imprisonment. Next, debate whether or not the suggested change in Question 3 would allow the court to convict the attacker in order to punish him. Provide a rationale to support your response.
  2. Differentiate between the crimes of false imprisonment and kidnapping. Support or critique the notion that one of the two crimes is more heinous than the other. Justify your response.

Consider the following change to the scenario. (A) and the attacker are romantically linked and are having an argument. The attacker drags (A) in the alley to talk. (A) slaps the attacker.

  1. Debate whether or not (A)’s action would require the attacker to defend himself. Provide a rationale to support your response.
  2. Use at least three (3) quality academic resources in this assignment. Note: Wikipedia and similar type Websites do not qualify as academic resources.

The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:

  • Explain the role of individuals and federal, state, and local government agencies in crime fighting and prosecution of criminal offenses.
  • Analyze the essential legal elements of criminal conduct.
  • Explain the concept of criminal liability.
  • Apply the concept of criminal responsibility and give examples of justifications, excuses, and incapacity for criminal acts.
  • Contrast crimes against persons, crimes against property, and other types of criminal conduct.
  • Use technology and information resources to research issues in criminal law.
  • Write clearly and concisely about criminal law using proper writing mechanics.

Sample Answer

Assault vs. Battery

Assault and battery regarded together or differently based on jurisdiction. The two crimes are usually prosecuted together. Battery is a crime which contains the harm, causation, attendant circumstance criminal intent, and criminal act elements. The battery intent includes recklessly, knowingly, negligently or purposely causing bodily to another with or without a weapon. The element of battery attendant circumstance requires that touching take place without the consent of the victim. The criminal act need also be legal and factual cause of damage. Offensive contact and other physical harm are regarded in a number of jurisdictions. Assault on the other hand is a criminal act which contains intent and criminal act elements. It can include battery attempt or battery threat. Assault normally involves threatening to carry out a violence crime upon a different individual with aptitude to follow via the threat. On the other hand, battery must involve unwanted or unsolicited touching, injuring or groping of a different person, battery is considered to be a more serious crime as compared to assault (Staff, 2015).

Example of a battery: When a person throw a stone to another person with intention of hitting another person. If the person is hit by this stone, then it is considered as battery.  Battery can also be demonstrated when an individual get hold of another from nowhere and slap the person or box the person. This is regarded as battery

Example of an assault: When a person throws a stone to another person with intention of hitting the person but luckily or unluckily missies the person, then that is considered as an assault. Assault can also happens someone stop another person and threaten to make harm to cause injuries for one reason or another and demonstrate the ability to fulfill his or her threat. For instance with statements such as “I will kill you, or I will beat you up.”

Case Jurisdiction

In this particular case, A is attacked without her knowledge dragged in alley and her clothes are ripped. This is a clear intention that the attacker intended to cause harm to A. The act of dragging A and ripping off her clothes without her consent is battery, since it is a violent and an offensive act against A, especially in this case where A was not aware of the attacker. The ripping off of A’s clothes demonstrates intention of causing more harm which include rape. Since there was no argument between them, or previous relation, the attacker could have been trying to rape A, and if she did not manage to escape this could have happened. In this regard, the man can be accused or prosecuted with attempted rape, which is clear prove that his intention were not good. However, since he had not managed to make more advancement this can only be interpreted as battery and the man should be punished for it.  A hits the offender with a rock to escape. Although there is battering taking place in this case, it is specifically done for self-defense. The attacker could have caused more harm to A, if A had not managed to escape, in the regard, the A intention of executing the battery act will safe her from being charged with battery crime (FindLaw, 2015).

Battery to Consensual Touching

This act could have transformed into consensual touching if A and the offender were in some sort of sexual relationship and they were playing games or A was in consent of the offender presence, and intention. Basically, A must be in consent for the act to qualify to be consensual and must have agreed to the act and not forced to be involved in it. Therefore. in this case, A and the man must know each other, must have agreed to be together and A was at the point of incident purposely to meet him and ready for his contact. This response is valid because only consent creates a difference between battery and consensual touching, without consent, this could have been considered non-consensual touching, which is also considered a crime (Storm, 2015).

Change of Scenario

When the scenario is changed, the aspect of false imprisonment comes in. False imprisonment is a crime that involves restricting freedom of movement of another person intentionally. The restraining act can involve physical barrier that include a locked door, restraining by employing physical force, an invalid legal authority application, or failure to release. The change of question three to consider a situation where A is restricted by a person related with her forcefully, then the person will be subjected into punishment of false imprisonment, irrespective of whether A had consent to be in the place. This limit the freedom of movement of another person whether the person consented to be in the place, no one is supposed to prevent him or her to get out of the place and thus, anyone one involved in the act of confining another person against their will commits a crime (USLegal, 2015).

False Imprisonment vs. Kidnapping

False imprisonment involves restricting the movement of another person without the person’s consent. This can either be due to legal measures or personal interest. Kidnapping takes place when an individual moves another individual physically, without the consent of that person, with intent of using the abduction in link with some form of wicked objectives, either for political purposes, for ransom, or for any other purpose. On the contrary, false imprisonment may not have wicked objectives though it may cause bodily harm or psychological harm to the involved person (USLegal, 2015).

Change of Scenario

In case A and the man are in a relationship and A is dragged a side for a talk then the situation changes. Basically, the two individuals know each other and A is well aware of the reason of being dragged behind. If A slaps the attacker, it must be to demonstrate her anger or disagreement and thus, she may not go beyond that slap or cause any more harm to the attacker. In this case, the attacker does not have any reason to defend himself. Maybe he can just hold her hands to retrain her from slapping him again if she shows any further intention. However, based on the relation, A does not demonstrate any danger towards the attacker and thus, there is no need for self-defense. Moreover, judging on masculinity, A cannot pose any physical danger to the attacker since she does not have the physical power to do so or a weapon to aid her in doing so and thus, self-defense is not necessary (FindLaw, 2015).

Plan for Updating a City Disaster Management Plan – Assignment Instructions

Assignment 2: LASA 2 – Centervale: A Public Health Response

In this assignment, you will develop a PowerPoint presentation that outlines your plan for updating a disaster management plan of the fictitious city of your choice e.g Centervale.

Scenario:

Public health professionals must be involved in numerous planning activities that are related to emergency public health responses. Disaster planning and response is a rapidly growing area in public health. Events related to natural disasters and responses to terrorist attacks over the past decade have become very real.
This assignment addresses emergency public health responses that are capable of providing meaningful help to communities in preparing for and dealing with public health disasters.
The city of Centervale has a population of 75,000 and continues to grow. It is located approximately forty-five miles outside of a huge metropolitan area of over two million people, and within an area with a high occurrence of tornados. Centervale has been developing their local disaster management plan since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. The city elects a mayor and city council which contracts a city manager.
City officials and planners have been following the latest protocols based on the in-state and federal guidelines for a community of its size and configuration. However, the city’s plans have mostly focused on responses to terrorism threats. The plans show incomplete responses to other public health emergencies or natural disasters. For the most part, they have continued to rely on local first responder protocols that have been in place for years.
The city council has allowed you forty-five minutes for your presentation. Keep in mind the scalability factor for the size of the population and location. Your presentation must include a risk-based, all-hazards, and capability-approach response.You have been invited as a disaster management and emergency preparedness specialist to make a proposal to the city council. The city is looking to fully develop its plans to include protocols for a full and measured response to other disasters of a public health nature, including natural disasters.

Complete the following:

  • Develop a 15–20-slide PowerPoint presentation that outlines your suggested path to updating Centervale’s disaster management plan.
  • Using the National Preparedness Guidelines (NPG) as a starting point in researching relevant information, be sure to address the following in your presentation:
    • Identify two public health threats to Centervale, one that arises from terrorism and one that arises from natural disasters.
    • For each public health threat, provide an outline of a disaster management plan. Use the following resource to help guide the outline of your plan:
      U.S. Department of Homeland Security. (2007).
In your outline of a disaster management plan:
  1. Create a common target overview that outlines basic planning and communications.
  2. Identify basic prevention strategies that Centervale should conduct.
  3. Recommend specific protection strategies to mitigate the effects disasters have on public health. Make sure you address infrastructure, food and agriculture, and epidemiological services. Be sure to account for both human and animal health.
  4. Develop a basic response plan that outlines the specific and appropriate steps Centervale must take to ensure proper response.
    • In your response plan, explain the common issues affecting the health of the responder teams and propose steps to mitigate those issues.
  5. Develop a recovery plan that explains how Centervale can provide long-term public health care (for example, disposing of materials, restoring facilities, etc.).
  6. Support your arguments with examples and scholarly references.

Women In The Justice System Research Paper

Women have generally been involved in criminal justice mainly as victims compared to perpetrators. They make up close to fifty percent of victims of criminal acts with a lesser number of offenders. Women are looked down upon in the justice system yet this has been fairly ignored by stakeholders. However, the number of women in prison is still low compared to the number of men. It is also important to note that the rates at which women are beingimprisoned for participating in violence related crimes have reduced. The rise in the number of women being incarnated is attributed to the change in policy that has for instance affected crimes related to drugs. Most women are usually involved in petty crimes and research shows that this is contributed largely by both sexual or physical abuse and emotions. The biological differences between men and women should be appreciated (Kaschak 1992, 11). Womenneeds are in most cases ignored in the establishments that make up the correctional system and this can be viewed as oppression. The following paper addresses some of the major challenges women in correctional institutions face and how they can be addressed to ensure they are not negatively affected by them.

Challenges faced by women in correctional institutions

            Women serving prison sentences often face a lot of challenges that either come as a result of life before imprisonment or during the sentencing period itself. First of all, most of them are separated from their children and other important family members. A study undertaken in the year 1995 indicated thateighty percent of women imprisoned in California had children (Owen and Bloom, 1995).Such female prisoners tackle problems when it comes to maintaining a proper relationship with their children that is caused by either agency dealing with matters of child welfare or the system itself. The mother’s inability to keep in contact with the child is further dealt a blow by factors such as long distance from the prison to the homes housing the children. Most prison institutions also do not offer transport services to from the institutions to these homes. Furthermore, the little economic resources available deprive the mother of the ability to provide for the child. The children also suffer trauma that results from the arrest and unexpected separation from their mother. A majority of prisons never value how crucial a relationship between a mother and a child is. It is, therefore, important that adequate policies should be put in place to enable this relationship to develop.

Secondly, most correctional institutions do not offer treatment for drug and substance abuse. Pregnant women and those with mental illness also receive little to no assessment while within the system. The inadequacy of valid treatment and training decreases how effective the few programs available can be (Wellisch, 1997). Women that are abusing substance are likely to suffer emotional distress and cases of low self-worth compared to male prisoners. They are also at high risk of suffering infections such as tuberculosis, sexually transmitted infections, and HIV. Women prisoners receive little education regarding childbirth. In most instances, some are not well prepared for the delivery process leading to a high probability of complications during birth. Cases of mental illness are also ignored in equal measure. Estimates indicate that between twenty-five to sixty percent of are in need of mental checkups. Not many prisons have put in place programs to provide treatment for the mentally handicapped inmates (Abraham and McClelland, 2002). Implications of abuse that result from the experience women inmates go through raises the need for counseling. It has an impact on their well-being both physically and emotionally.

Thirdly, women prisoners have limited access to vocational training and educational programs when compared to their male counterparts.This leaves them less equipped with skills that are fundamental in the job market which can aid them in accessing employment opportunities. The vocational training available for women prisoners laid a foundation that is generally inclined towards them picking up traditional capacities.

Sexual abuse prevalence has continuously been a major challenge women face. It dates back to past years. Women in prison are always in a vulnerable position and risk suffering cases of rape and assault. Prison personnel also play a role in this misconduct being that some of the abuses are carried out by them. Examples of sexual violations include improperly touching the inmates during searches, watching the prisoners while they dress or during showers. Sexual assault also comes into play in instances where the prisoners depend on the staff rendering them vulnerable to being exploited. Their will to choose is given up and traded in for sex in order to gain favors.   Measures of protection lack while inmates who have been victims of such abuses and exploitations do not have the chance of evading the perpetrators as efforts to registering complaints can be met by harsh retaliations and severe stigmatization.

Women undergoing the transition from prison life back to the society often face a number of challenges. It is always a requirement that they stay in line with the requirements of their probation stipulations or as the provisions stated by their parole. Examples of the requirements they are to meet include locating housing which should be in a neighborhood that is free from drugs if they have a history as addicts, maintaining financial stability and accessing proper medical care. Despite all theses, most women are left struggling in in areas that cannot support their parole orders. Lack of support from the community also makes it close to impossible for them to adjust to the change in environment. As a result, most of them find themselves falling back into addiction and criminal related activities. Mothers who are finding their way back into the society always have the hope of reuniting with their children. This is termed as an added burden to such former inmates who are also tasked with the duty of providing for their children (Brown, Melchoir, and Huba, 1999). As Covington (2002) states, there is a vacuum of coordination between the correctional systems and the women who are being absorbed back into the community. This renders them vulnerable to possibilities of relapsing.

Remedies to challenges faced by women in the justice system

            Criminal offenders, both men, and women have needs that should be met. Individuals who offer supervision under the criminal justice system require proper training when it comes to treating victims of substance abuse. The system should put in place policies that safeguard the security and well-being of women in various correctional institutions. To have policies that effectively and conclusively address these challenges, some factors should be put into consideration. First of all, the various burden levels should be included in the forefront when designing proper programs and mechanisms. Women who are mothers should be given special attention in their efforts when it comes to being reabsorbed back into the community. The level of expectation placed on them should be downscaled so as not to put pressure on them.

The policies should also tackle the vacuum that is created by funding. Vocational training and education offered to the inmates should be up to recommended standards that will properly equip them in the transition process. Correctional systems should also provide adequate follow-up programs to help the released inmates effectively reposition themselves back into the community. Upon serving their sentences, a program should be put in place to enable women to properly connect with the community. This plan should immediately kick off upon sentencing of the individual contrary to being rolled out a few days prior to their release. Transitional services should be adequately established by the institution to aid them to have a stable foundation with their families.

Additionally, the prison system should put in place harsh penalties to perpetrators of sexual violence against women inmates. They should properly scrutinize cross-gender supervision to ensure the inmates are not subject to harassment by their supervisors. Prison infrastructure should be properly designed to ensure a safe environment for the inmates. Cases of women prisoners being assaulted sexually continue rising because the punishment that is accorded the perpetrators is not harsh enough. Victims in most cases are subdued in their efforts when it comes to making reports of sexual harassment in cases where the perpetrators are the staff serving in the correctional institutions. The Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) stipulates that prisoners with complaints should access all avenues in the administrative set up before they can register a complaint with the federal court. The victims are therefore left in a dilemma since the very perpetrators of such acts are the same people who commit them of facilitating such abuses that they go through. The burden of proving such allegations also rests on the shoulders of the victims themselves before they can file a substantial case in the course of seeking justice. Furthermore, the congress should make efforts in providing a statute, Protecting Vulnerable Inmate Populations Act (PVIP). This statute will ensure that first-time offenders are safeguarded against being put in the incarnation with offenders who have a violent criminal record. Conclusively, no barriers should stop women who are in pursuit of justice in such cases. Proper amendments should be made on the PLRA (Prison Litigation Reform Act) to empower victims not to necessarily exhaust all the avenues when filing a claim.

In conclusion, rights of women prisoners should be safeguarded and proper protection against cases of abuse either verbally or physically should be administered effectively. The prison administrative system should ensure that proper mechanisms are provided to make the sentencing duration conducive for the prisoners. Prisons should help shape the character of the offenders and not make them worse.

White Collar Crimes Research Paper

Introduction

To understand and even debate on the subject of shaming of white collar crime perpetrators, it is important to know what the term itself means. White collar crimes refer to crimes committed by government and business professionals with financial motivation lacking violence. The individuals committing such crimes are usually of high social standing and respectability. White collar criminals commit the crimes due to financial motivation. They usually do not have the intention of harming people, but their actions have both direct and indirect implications on people all over the world. Types of white collar crimes include fraud, labor racketeering, copyright infringement, cybercrime and money laundering among others. White collars crimes are committed for some reasons which may have first or minor consequences depending on the intensity and type of the offence committed, which result in harsh penalties. One of these penalties is shaming and it destroys the reputations of the criminal making it hard for him to get back on his feet.

Why White Collar Crimes are Committed

Individuals who commit white collar crimes weigh the pros and cons of committing such a crime to see if it is in their best interest (Elliot, 2017). They compare the results of having committed the offence to the outcomes of not committing the crime. Other criminals commit such crimes due to their genetic makeup which makes them vulnerable to committing crimes (Elliot, 2017). Organisations and companies find themselves committing white collar crimes due to their desires to reduce costs and expenses and increase profitability (Elliot, 2017). For example, a company will prefer to illegally dump waste or evaporate it into the environment to reduce the costs that arise from waste management.

Read also Social Class And Unemployment: Relationship To Crime

Types of White Collar Crimes

Corporations or individuals sometimes find themselves being deceived by other companies or people to make a profit (Elliot, 2017). This crime is referred to as fraud. Fraud occurs in the form of misinterpretation of company products, and misleading advertising is done to maximize sales. Bribery occurs when a person in possession of something of value uses it to influence or tempt another person to get him to act in a certain way. Corruption usually involves the use of money. Offering and accepting bribes are both illegal.

Forgery includes making, altering, being in possession or using falsified documents. These documents include checks and contracts (Legal Dictionary, 2017). Fraud is committed with the intention. Insider trading goes against the law when an individual or a group of people engage in the sale of stocks with special knowledge unavailable to other people outside the company.  Embezzlement of funds is the case where an individual steals money from his clients without their knowledge. For example, an accountant directing client’s money into his own secret account is a form of embezzlement of funds.

Implications of White Collar Crimes

White collar crimes lead to far-reaching economic problems. For example, the financial crisis in 2009 was blame on white collar crimes. The real effects of fraud are yet to be realized as the offence may take a long time before it can be detected and even brought to court (Legal Dictionary, 2017). White collar crimes may have environmental implications, in the case of companies that dump waste illegally or those that allow it to evaporate into the air. White collar crimes have effects on both groups and individuals who play no part in the offence. Fake HIV testing kits have led to victims living under stigmatization and taking anti-retroviral drugs when they really are not infected.

Penalties for White Collar Crimes

Penalties for white collar crimes vary. Courts passing judgement over these cases use sentencing guidelines to ensure that the sentences are uniform (McGrath, 2017). The belief that white collar criminals get easy time is untrue. White collar crimes result in social and employment consequences as criminals have a hard time getting work (Legal Dictionary, 2017). White collar criminals also experience social stigma.

Read also The National Response Plan for White Collar Crime

Perpetrators found guilty of embezzlement of funds usually find themselves serving up to two years imprisonment together with a minimum of $250,000. These penalties usually have effects on the criminals as they find themselves changing for the good. Some states prefer the punishment of public humiliation, also referred to as public shaming(Kostelnik, 2012). Here, an individual stands in a public place holding a banner stating his crime for the public to witness. There have been countless debates over the use of public humiliation to punish white collar criminals.

Public Shaming

Shaming in public has been used as a form of punishment for a long time now (American University Law Review, 2011). Public humiliation has been used to punish a broad range of crimes. It is preferred over incarceration as it does require much of society’s resources while providing the same rate of deterrence. There are four variants of shaming, and these include stigmatizing publicity, literal stigmatization, self-debasement and finally, contrition. Shaming of white collar criminals is efficient (American University Law Review, 2011). The offender remains incapacitated as the general public will react naturally by avoiding him. Shaming destroys the perpetrator’s reputation, putting him out of business.

Defendants who plead guilty face a similar fate (Kostelnik, 2012). The criminals will hardly find themselves in their same job positions (American University Law Review, 2011). Their dignity lowered and reputations lost, they usually change their criminal ways. It is usually difficult for them to re-offend. Sometimes, the individuals are not allowed to interact with certain people, for example their friends(American University Law Review, 2011). This restriction is part of the punishment.

Public shaming does not work on every perpetrator of white collar crimes. Others will still find their way back to their evil habits undeterred by the public shaming they have undergone (American University Law Review, 2011). Not all perpetrators make it to the papers. With their identity known only to those in the same area as they, white collar criminals can easily relocate to other areas and find new unknowing victims(American University Law Review, 2011). Some critics have argued that public shaming is harsh and cruel, but these are just conclusions made without enough research or facts (Kostelnik, 2012). One cannot compare public shaming to imprisonment as they are not the same. One will easily choose public humiliation over imprisonment any day (American University Law Review, 2011). Imprisoned criminals will most likely commit white collar crimes on their release, compared to those who have experienced public shaming (Kostelnik, 2012). Perpetrators who were in prisoner know that their crimes are not known to many people and might end up dealing in the same trade, victimizing a different unaware people. Others come out feeling even more motivated.

White Collar Crimes According To Edwin Sutherland

According to Edwin Sutherland, white collar crimes breeds’ distrust, lowers social morale while representing attacks on social institutions. He argued that the public did not see the act as a crime at all as it was thought of as “victimless” or non-violent nature. The unlawful activity fall into a number of categories; first being looting or collective embezzlement where insiders rob funds from the institutions they are put in charge of.

White collar crimes are being treated with respect in our governments. This probably is likely to make the future generation chose these types of crimes because they know they won’t be charged. White collar crime is one kind of corporate crime. But why should the government delay to punish those convicted with such acts? (Podgor & Ellen, 2014).

Conclusion

White collar crimes occur in different types, for example fraud, bribery and embezzlement of funds. All these types of white collar crimes have almost the same effects on individuals and companies. These effects may be unnoticeable while other may result in loss of lives. Others may be horrific environmental implications further destroying the planet. The penalties for these crimes should be harsh so as to prevent the criminals from committing white collar crime again. Perpetrators should be fined huge amounts of money and face long prison sentences to ensure they do not redo the crimes. Shaming has been thought of and debated on, on whether it is a good form of punishment and if it will do well the criminals. It is indeed a good form of punishment as it is efficient and does not waste public resources; public humiliation has proved on most white collar criminals. It certainly should be considered as a reliable way to punish white collar criminals.

Use of Music to Impact Cognitive Function

For many years, researchers have shown interest in the relationship between music and learning. There are studies like that of Hall (1952) that indicate music can enhance cognitive abilities, as quoted in Harmon et al. (2008). Nevertheless, Harmon et al. (2008) also acknowledge that studies like that of Fogelson (1973) indicating music can interfere with complex cognitive processes but not simple ones. In any case, researchers in 2004 determined that there was a relationship between certain types of music and learning. I can confirm, from personal experiences, that music interferes with my concentration and subsequent understanding of literary material. Such interference depends on the type of music playing in the background as I study.

As per the sentiments expressed by Miendlarzewska and Trist (2014), neuroscientific research demonstrates the positive effects of musical training on brain development. Such is highlighted by neuroimaging that reveals plastic changes in adult musicians’ brains. The authors in this situation are of the view that the benefits of musical training are beyond the skills such training aims at developing. Such benefits are also shown to last well into adulthood. For instance, better verbal memory, reading ability, executive functions, and accuracy of second language pronunciation, are all associated with musical training among children. More so, the ease with which a child learns to play a musical instrument has been used to project IQ and academic performance in young adulthood. There are observable structural and functional adaptations in the brain that are reported to correlate with the practice intensity and duration. The timing of musical initiation also determines the effects of training on cognitive development owing to sensitive periods during development. The dominant idea in Miendlarzewska and Trist (2014)’s research is that musical training determines heightened sound sensitivity and enhances general reasoning skills and verbal abilities. The influence of music training on cognitive functions is majorly associated with how listening to music demands particular perceptual abilities. Some of them are selective attention for perceiving the temporal and harmonic music structure, auditory memory, and pitch discrimination. The massive demands of musical training essentially impact on the attentional and executive functions of the brain.

The other dimension through which the effects of music on the brain are perceived is the role background music plays in learning. Bottiroli et al. (2014)’s definition of background music is any music played while the attention of the listener is focused on another task. The arousal mood hypothesis presumes that the positive influence of music on human behavior is a consequence of how music impacts on mood and arousal. The extent of physiological activation, mood, and enjoyment are determined by listening to music, with the consequence reflecting on cognitive performance. The tempo of the music, whether slow or fast, and the mode, either major or minus, affect the listener’s arousal and mood, respectively. Bottiroli et al. (2014) observe that music that is fast tempo and major mode induces a positive mood and higher levels of arousal. On the contrary, slow tempo and minor mode music induces a sad mood and lower arousal levels. The benefits realized are often related to tasks that rely on processing speed and visuo-spatial capabilities. Applying my personal experiences, cramming capabilities are heightened when I listen to fast tempo music like rock. Therefore, in studying for social sciences exams, listening to such music enhances my comprehension capabilities. Such influence of music has been popularly branded the Mozart effect, where the processing speed performance is the centre of focus.

Nevertheless, for multimedia learning, mathematics, and surgery, Bottiroli et al. (2014) discovers background music effects related to disturbance and interference. The cognitive-capacity hypothesis explains such negative findings. Specifically, the hypothesis purports that there is a limited pool of resources available for cognitive processing at any given time. Therefore, the potential for interference from background music disrupts cognitive tasks because there is overtax of resources. It is the task complexity that is also highlighted as playing a significant role in the occurrence of such negative influences. More complex and demanding tasks are associated with stronger detrimental effects of music. Even so, the cognitive functioning is considered more enhanced when there is background music than in situations of silence and white noise.

The last argument on the relationship between music and cognitive functioning is that presented by Schellenberg (2005). The scholars sentiments relates to music-aptitude tests and auditory tasks. Their perspective is that the skills music-aptitude tests require for good performance are also useful in auditory tasks. Phonemic awareness, for instance, requires the perception of segmental units making up words. Hence, the ability of an individual to acquire a second language has an association with music aptitude. It thus follows that the keenness of an individual to sounds in music training can reflect their ability to capture the phonemic differences in language grasping. The discrimination abilities related to basic pitch and tempo thus correlate with intelligence.

In conclusion, research observes significant influence of music on the cognitive functions of an individual. Background music can be beneficial to reading and comprehension, depending on the tempo and mode of such music. Even so, music can also act as interference or disturbance to learning, especially when an individual is performing highly demanding cognitive tasks. Music training is also seen to be associated with the academic capabilities of individuals in many forms, touching on intelligence, IQ, phonemics, and the transfer of music aptitudes to academics.

Documentry Films And The Promotion Of Social Justice

Introduction

People of all walks of life have come to the realization that documentaries are more important and compelling than works of fiction. Experts have even been of the opinion that there will be a paradigm shift from fiction to non-fiction in the film industry just as it was with novels and other literary works. To many, documentaries are like life experiences. When you see someone on your screen telling their story, there is an immediate elevation in your engagement level. The person on the screen gives an account of their real life experience, no matter how grim sounds. So, during that period ,when you are glued to your television set watching that story, you are, in actual sense, putting yourself in the shoes of that person. Documentaries have more often than not given two sides of a story; either providing evidence or disputing the evidence that exists already (Croton, et al. 14).The purpose of this essay is to explore how documentaries have been able to provide evidence or dispute it and provide case studies that include actual evidence of this phenomenon.

                        The impact of documentary films in bringing social change

Documentary films are quite influential and have been known to have an impact on social issues brought to light. An impact space has come into being as a sector in the film industry where the sole purpose is to institute social change and social impact through documentary films. The impact producers from the documentaries’ production team are responsible for the devising and execution of strategic campaigns which may include engagement, outreach, and marketing of their film in order to maximize its impact. The main purpose of the production of such films is to significantly alter behavioral patterns, social norms and the cultural values of people as films often seek to institute social changes on a particular issue that is of concern. For those watching these documentaries, it typically feels as though they are taking a serendipitous journey where the life of a total stranger unfolds before their eyes.

Pioneer filmmakers such as Maysles describe watching a documentary film as an identification with that which exists in a special manner of discovery together with feelings of close connection to an individual(s) who is the subject matter in a film (Moyano ). Moreover, documentary films are capable of awakening feelings of empathy within the audiences’ hearts and this is one intangible magic that documentary films have. When a documentary film creates empathy in the hearts of-of its audience, it illuminates new perspectives and activates powerful emotions. After such a poignant experience, what happens next is the audience walking out after watching the documentary saying, “I should do something about the feeling that documentary film and what I was just exposed to!” The empathy that a moving story creates can be the best fuel for action. Societies viewpoint can undergo major changes through the coordination and organization of strategic actions. A post-viewing inspiration can become coherent actions that can alter societal practices to a larger extent.

More often than not, a winning documentary seems to land in the consciousness of the public and sets off a chain of events that can change society for good(Stam 25). These changes can alter the manner in which people do things, people that they had previously discriminate upon and even the foods that they choose to put into their bodies. In presenting these stories, the producers of the documentary often face the debacle of “selective bias”, especially if they are trying to measure the impact of their documentary (Documentary Filmmaker: Film & Tv Lance Kramer)

. All documentaries, regardless of distribution, and their budget size, often run against the audiences’ selectivity. It is important to acknowledge that the media structures that exist, are amalgamated with a diversity in choice of content (Documentaries). Citizens who lack a  preference or a penchant for public affairs in the media may find it quite easy to steer clear off the content that a documentary intends to bring forth all together.  Moreover, those few individuals who have strong interests in social or political issues might take advantage of this abundance of choice to subsequently tailor some of their common habits to the pre-existing political trajectory that they intend to take. As a result, one should expect both ‘preference” and “ideological”  gaps when dealing with any film audience.

Blockbuster documentaries have fallen victim, during numerous occasions, to forces of selectivity. An example was in the 2004 United States election where there was an indication from a Pew survey that 31% of the adult population in America gave information suggesting that during the previous year, they did view a political documentary that had a direct correlation with the presidential candidates and their campaign. A large majority of the audiences did admit to watching Fahrenheit 9/11 by Michael Moore. In addition to this, other films would also generate attention for the campaign season duration, which included Going Up River together with Bush’s Brain by Joseph Mealey and George Butler.  Although a fraction of close to a third of the adult population in America constitutes one sizeable audience designated for whichever media programming, results from the Prew Survey that the viewership of these documentaries was skewed to a large extent (Hindi 14). Counties that were electorally “blue” were likely to be liberal and democratic and they would face off with those that were electorally “red” which had a younger demographic that that was already politically and socially active.

Another example of how content choice option provided by documentaries can directly affect the direction that society intends to take is that of the United States presidential candidate, Al Gore. The survey data that had been collected for  the purpose of being used in documentaries of the blockbuster genre had information that would point to selectivity biases among the audience. Despite having massive box office success and publicity in the media for Inconvenient Truth by Al Gore, a survey undertaken by Los Angeles Times  taken one month after the film’s release found that only 4% of the adult population in America had taken the time to watch the documentary. Al Gore had previously been known to enjoy a favorable media “reinvention”  where his book going by the same title Inconvenient Truth apparently spent a couple of weeks at New York Times of best sellers list. Yet, according to the Gallup poll, his favorability ratings experienced little changes, remaining at  45%. Such an example goes to show that in a media environment that is ultra-competitive, the audience that viewed Inconvenient Truth was more concerned with the issue of global warming(To Dream the Impossible Dream). Additionally, a large majority of the American people who were indifferent towards Al Gore were likely to switch off their Tv sets or change the station when his documentary came on.

Brian Winston, in his harsh critique of the tradition of documentary films, as depicted by television journalism, argues that during the 1930s in Great Britain, filmmakers often took a romantic perspective of the working class subjects. In essence, they had failed to recognize that the worker is a self-determining agent. They failed to recognize the plight of the workers and how successive governments had ignored them.  For instance, Housing Problems(1935) was a documentary film that had the sole intention of giving slum dwellers an opportunity to speak independently for themselves. The interview was in the synchronous sound format and was set inside the subjects’ homes. What raises eyebrows among critics today is the manner in which the victims of this unimaginable poverty spoke about their plight, as if they came hat in hand. The victims were very calm and politely explained their living conditions in the hopes that a savior or someone else would agree with them about their condition and do something about it. Housing Problems(1935) had Coke Company and the Gas Light as its official sponsors; since the government’s slum clearance program had proposed a “solution” of some sort to the worker’s plight. Both companies were aware of the fact that the solution would also serve the company’s interests of increasing gas consumption at the end of the day. In this documentary, supplication stood out and militancy was suppressed. A stage was set for politics that was of charitable benevolence.

From the example above, Winston notes that the urge to portray the worker poetically or romantically within ethics of charitable empathy and ethics of social concern ended up denying the workers the feeling of equal status between them and the filmmaker. The act of representation was in the control of the filmmaker and a sense of collaboration was missing in the film. Filmmakers from a professional corps would fist represent others in accordance with the ethics that they possess and their institutional mandate. The effect that such a film would have is that the presenter would come off as the start “artist” and the worker as a central subject who is pathetic, anonymous and a victim (Rosenthal, 274). Parenthetically, it is noteworthy to acknowledge that traits such as this did not reign with all presenters. There were documentaries that chose to stand in solidarity with the workers and display their resistance and protests. Henri Storck and Joris Ivens made their own position quite partisan and gave an activist account of a coal mine strike by Belgian miners. Misère au Borinage (1933), was the name of their documentary film which was also their sign of solidarity with these defiant workers(Bergh 16). The filmmaker’s intention was  to institute changes in the society, a rise in wages for the workers, better working conditions, and benefits for the miners who worked under difficult conditions

Documentary films can also bring about social change by using an “audience-centered” approach to telling a story that had been largely ignored. The adoption of this type of approach to the development of content would enhance the effect that the film would have on its audience. Documentary films derive a lot of their value from the ability to expertly “frame” a social issue in a manner that provides interpretations that are not readily offered by traditional mainstream media coverage. In the production process, a team of producers may take advantage of the fact that data from survey research, interviews, and focus groups is available and can be used to tailor stories able to make a subject have more personal relevance to the target audience. For instance, The Sierra Club Chronicles employs this strategy where the characters in the film are ethnically diverse and activists from across rural and urban communities. Such a narrative is “nonpartisan” in nature and is intended to encourage others in the society to embrace the same attitude.  Such films have a spirit of activism in them geared towards changing the society that we live in for the better. The production of a documentary film might reinvigorate and catalyze a group of other activists with the same goal and institute changes in the society. Furthermore, public screenings and community forums help in the creation of a space for individuals to have alternative interpretations of issues that are not in the public domain or within mainstream discourse during news coverage.

In other situations, the mere knowledge of a documentary’s pending release can initiate response and reactions from stakeholders, elected officials and other elites anticipating the film’s impact on the coverage of news or public perceptions. An example is that of The ACLU Freedom Files. An episode titled  “Gay & Lesbian Rights”  that was to screen in eight states that were same-sex marriages were banned. If the episode was aired there would be a range of possible impacts that would result from it. First, the screening would invigorate the activists in these eight states and renew their motivation. The activists would also have an increased repertoire of a whole new set of arguments that they would use during their campaign trail and provide an authoritative source for them to counter their opponents claims. To add to this campaign- specific activities and new linkages among those groups that were not previously aligned would increase. It is evident that documentary films can have a strong influence on the agenda-setters in  mainstream media. These films provide a spectacular “news peg” for those journalists that are seeking to either generate new coverage or sustain an existing issue.

During the golden age of Tv, news channels such as CBS would produce documentaries that were meant to tell the stories of those suffering in society. Hunger in America(1968) was a reality show in which children were shown to be living in situations of abject poverty and hunger when the economy was making onward strides(Alvarez, et al. ). The content of the documentary involved the depiction of children struggling to wake up in the morning or even concentrate while at school because they hadn’t eaten anything for days on end. What was shocking was that all this was happening in a first world country that was very much developed, with structures that could be implemented to assist these children, yet no one had offered a helping hand. Was it because the came from a  low-income neighborhood or was it because of the color of their skin? All these were pertinent issues that would be addressed in the film as they needed to be solved for the society to progress. The reaction among most Americans was that if shock and disbelief. Members of Congress would then enact a nutrition safety net that was modern with the sole aim of reducing hunger among children from disadvantaged backgrounds. In 2012, Lori Silverbush and Kristi Jacobson made a follow-up film, A Place at the Table, which went on to reach an even wider audience. A coordinated campaign was thus born out of this and website created to follow up on the progress and strides made in feeding these children.

                         Documentary Case Study 1; Bully

                Bully was a documentary that sought to bring to light the bullying scourge  that had plagued the American schooling system for the longest time. The aim of this documentary was to bring to light the amount of suffering that students go through at school and how this phenomenon was in an actual sense growing, as opposed to diminishing. It was said that over 13 million young individuals are victims of bullying in the United States alone (Pilger 55). In the film, Lee Hirshi gets to explore the lives of five children who have been affected directly by bullying as they gave their intimate stories about how their lives changed drastically. Hirshi interviews teachers and administrators in schools that have been affected by bullying and tries to squash the cliché that “kids will be kids” the film (Glazier and Flahive).  The film represents a movement of parents, teachers and the society at large that is saying no to bullying and trying to redefine this “norm”.

The purpose of this film was to lobby the policymakers to create policies that would protect children when they were in school. Educational programs would be started to assist the students in understanding the effects of bullying and why they should not engage in it. Another goal was to shift culture, from that which condoned public bullying as normal to a zero tolerance policy (Haugen, et al. 45). Getting the film in front of a million school-going children was the first step in ensuring that children learned about the negative effects of bullying. The film was responsible for giving a voice to the voiceless children who had suffered for a very long time. Such a campaign was responsible for reducing instances of bullying and to change societies perception of this issue.

                         Documentary  Case Study 2: The Invisible War

This film intended to tell a story that no one had ever dared to tell, the issue of rape in the US military. No one knew the actual extent of rape in the military until this documentary was produced. It was said that one in every four female personnel in the US military would suffer rape during the course of their service  (Skaine 67). The documentary also explores the systematic cover-up of all the sex crimes that have been committed under the watchful eye of the US military and the struggles that survivors of this horrendous crime go through. Rebuilding their lives is the first step as they continue fighting for justice across the board to ensure that the perpetrators face charges for their crimes. The film was instrumental in raising awareness about rape in the military and how many women had struggled to overcome these experiences.

The Invisible War combined investigative journalism with the power of high-level campaigns ahead of the scheduled release of the film to start the conversation on rape in the military. The manner in which they went about the advertisement of the documentary meant that both the government and the military were expected to intervene, instituting a change of policy that would see a shift towards the handling of cases outside the usual chain of command
(Trudeau). It was this documentary that was responsible for 20 or so different items that were introduced on legislative agenda to deal with these “serial predators” and the rape epidemic. Organizations were then created to deal with those who had survived sexual assault in order to enable them to lead normal lives again.

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Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation Business Environment and Strategic Management

1.0: Introduction

Corporations such as the Qatar General Electricity and Water Company need to understand the business environment in which they operate if they are to run successfully. This is because environmental factors have a major influence on every aspect of a corporation or business organization including its location, its personnel policies, the systems of distribution that it uses as well as the price that it charges for the service or products that it offers. The term ‘business environment’ connotes the various external institutions, forces, and factors that although being beyond the control of a corporation, nevertheless have a major impact on its operations. These include competitors, the government suppliers, as well as the environmental, technological, political, social, economic, and legal factors. Although some of this factor exert an indirect influence on the operations of a corporation, there are others that tend to exert a direct influence on corporations. Based on these observations, the business environment can be described as the total surroundings that happen to have an indirect or direct bearing on the operations of a corporation or business organization.

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The Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation (KAHRAMAA) takes into consideration external factors when analyzing its business environment. This paper will conduct a business environment analysis so as examine how these factors are taken into consideration by KAHRAMAA. In addition to this, the paper will also investigate the processes and systems that have been set in place by KAHRAMAA to help it in responding to the key stimuli affecting its business environment.

1.1: Company Profile of the Qatar General Electric and Water Corporation

Established in July 2000 with the passing of the Emiri Law Number 10, the Qatar General Electric and Water Corporation (KAHRAMAA) is charged with the responsibility of buying, selling and distributing electricity and water in Qatar. Some of the services that the company provides include the operation and construction of transmission and distribution networks for the water and electricity that it supplies to Qataris; the formulation and development of the various plans and programs that guide the development of electricity and water transmission and distribution networks; development of the codes and regulations that guide Qatar’s water and electricity supply practices to buildings and various facilities throughout the country; the provision of consultancy services in matters relating to its activities and business operations; and the provision of both technical and corporate support in respect to electricity generation and water desalination ventures (KAHRAMAA, 2017).

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The strong government support that KAHRAMAA enjoys has allowed for it to maintain its position as the sole electricity and water distribution owner and system operator for not only Qatar’s electricity sector but also its water sector. Ownership of KAHRAMAA is at the moment divided between the private and the public sector. With a combined shareholding of 57.25% of the corporation’s shares, different entities within the private sector are observed to hold the majority of the company’s shares. The government is a minority shareholder as it currently holds only about 42.74% of the corporation’s shares.

The Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation has experienced impressive growth over the years to now stand as the second largest electricity generation and water desalination corporation within the North Africa and Middle East region. KAHRAMAA enjoys a commanding 62% of the Qatar’s electricity supply market segment and 79% of its water supply market segment. To satisfy the demand in Qatar’s water and electricity market sectors, KAHRAMAA attained an output generation of 8755 Megawatts of electricity each day as at 2013 (KAHRAMAA, 2017a). In 2011 the company was able to reach its targeted distribution capacity of 325 million imperial gallons of water each day (KAHRAMAA, 2017b). The company’s rapid expansion is as a result of the rapid population growth in Qatar that has translated into a corresponding demand in the increase of electricity and water in the country.

2.0: Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation (KAHRAMAA) Business Environment Analysis

An environmental analysis is a strategic tool that provides business organizations and corporations with a process via which it becomes possible for them to identify all the internal and external elements affecting their performance. This analysis involves the assessment of the level of opportunity or threat factor that might currently be affecting the corporation. Using the data and results of this analysis, it becomes possible for a corporation’s management to make well-informed and effective decisions. In this regard, an environmental analysis helps to align an organization’s strategies with its environment. In a similar manner to all other markets, the electricity and water supply market is constantly undergoing new changes each day. While there are some factors that a corporation can be able to successfully control in its environment, there is however some factor that it is impossible for a corporation to control. As the operations of business organizations and corporation are greatly influenced by their environment, it is important for them to constantly analyze the market and the trade environment.

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A number of frameworks are used in the evaluation of a corporation’s or company’s business environment. These frameworks are frequently used together and include the PESTLE analysis which provides an analysis of the corporation’s external environment, the SWOT analysis which provides an analysis of a corporation’s internal environment and Porter’s Five Forces analysis with provides an assessment of a corporation’s competitive environment.

2.1: Analysis of KAHRAMAA’s External Business Environment: PESTLE Analysis

A PESTLE analysis provides a corporation’s management with an overview of its business conduct as well as the current market situation. The analysis can help corporations to evaluate the future of their business. A PESTLE analysis is comprised of a number of factors that have a major impact on the overall business environment. Each letter in the term ‘PESTLE’ is an acronym that is indicative of a set of factors that affect the industry either indirectly or directly, these factors are:

2.1.1: Political Factors

Political factors are inclusive of all the various political conditions and activities undertaken by the government that can end up affecting the operations of an organization. One of the political factors that affects KAHRAMAA’s operations is the company has been able to offer cheap electricity due to the electricity subsidies that are afforded by the Qatari government. Kovessy (2016) argues that although electricity bills across Qatar experienced a marked increase in 2015, the government still covered about 45% of the cost of the country’s energy consumption. Kovessy (2016) points out that according to a recent report issued by the credit rating agency Moody, the typical Qatar household tends to pay about 2.3 cents for every Kilowatt hour (kWh) of electricity that it consumes. This is despite the fact that it costs power companies in the country about 4.2 cents to generate a kilowatt hour of electricity. This essentially means that the Qatari government covers an average of about US1.9 cents for every kWh that is consumed by the country’s residential electrical power users. Using data from 2014, the report by Moody’s estimates that the cost of the government’s subsidies amounts to about $641.9 million.

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By subsidizing the cost of electricity in the country, the Qatari government is able to make the cost of electricity more affordable and in the process encourage more households to get connected to the country’s electrical power distribution system. However, the recent scrapping of electricity subsidies by the government could negatively affect KAHRAMAA’s operations as the high cost of electricity might reduce the per person electricity consumption. Perumal (2016) points out that the global credit-rating agency, Moody’s, indicated that the Qatari government could potentially increase electricity tariffs in the country by 40% and 81% for commercial and residential connections respectively. This would have the effect of reflecting the actual cost per kilowatt hour (kWh) of this electrical power.

Another political factor affecting KAHRAMAA’s business operations is that the corporation receives some funding from the state that allow for the corporation to minimize its cost of operations (oxfordbusinessgroup.com, 2017). Qatar’s water and electricity sectors are structured on a split-sector model where while the production and generation of water and electricity is undertaken by various public and private sector industry player, the distribution and transmission of these resources is the responsibility of KAHRAMAA. Under this system of operation, KAHRAMAA is identified as the sole designated purchaser of all the desalinated water and generated electricity within Qatar. After purchasing the electricity and desalinated water, KAHRAMAA then proceeds to sell these products at greatly subsidized rates. While KAHRAMAA operates on commercial principles it is the funding that it receives from the Qatari government that allows for the corporation to keep the cost of operations considerably low.

2.1.2: Economic Factors

In a PESTLE analysis, economic factors include all the factors that influence a country’s economy and subsequently the fiscal planning of a corporation. These include the fiscal policies, rate of inflation, the foreign exchange rate as well as the interest rates. These factors are useful to a corporation’s management as they suggest the direction in which an economy might move. Qatar was able to post a budget surplus that averaged 9.3 percent between the year 2000 and 2012. In 2015, the government claimed that it expected to experience a budget deficit for a period of at least three concurrent years due to the impact that low oil and gas prices on its revenue earning. Torchia (2015) points out that a long-term report on the Qatari economy that was issued by the Ministry of Development planning and Statistics forecasted a fiscal deficit of about 7.8 percent of the country’s GDP in 2016. This deficit was the first budget deficit that the country had experienced in 15 years. While approving its 2017 budget, Qatar projected a deficit of $7.8 billion, this was the second deficit in a row for the country.

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The current economic condition in Qatar is critically affecting KAHRAMAA’s operations as it is thought to be partly responsible for the government’s decision to remove the electricity subsidies that it was offering to the country’s citizens. The increased cost of electricity can reduce the demand for this product which will, in turn, affect KAHRAMAA’s profit margins as well as its plans for expansion.

2.1.4: Social Factors

In a PESTLE analysis, social factors include aspects such as the social lifestyles, the cultural implications, domestic structures and gender of the market that is being targeted by a company or corporation. One of the main social factors that are affecting the Qatar General Electric and Water Corporation is the accelerated rate of urbanization that is straining the already over-stretched infrastructure in the country. According to gulf-times.com (2014), Qatar had a population that stood at just 540,000 as at June 2002, however, the country has since then experienced a rapid population growth that saw the country’s population rise to a high of 2,116,400 as at February 2014. Recent statistical results on Qatar’s population presented by Walker (2016) indicate that there were 2,559,267 residents in Qatar as of April 2015. Gulf-times.com (2014) argues that the population growth in Qatar has been primarily accelerated by the influx of expatriates that are moving to the country to work on its numerous infrastructure projects. There has been a recent surge in the number of expatriates moving to Qatar for work on the back of the government’s increase in infrastructural investment ahead of the 2022 FIFA World Cup (zawya.com, 2016).

Qatar’s rapidly increasing population has increased the country’s demand for water and electricity and this is in turn impacting KAHRAMAA’s operations. Driven by the country’s rapid population and economic growth as well as the low prices that had been caused by state subsidies, Qatar’s demand for electricity experienced rapid growth that saw it more than quadruple during the 12-year period leading to 2012 when it hit a high of 32bn KWh. This demand is reported to have grown to some 36.1bn KWh in 2014. On the other hand, the total demand for water in Qatar rose to some 535m cu meter in 2015, this is up from an initial 195m cu meters in 2005 (Oxfordbusinessgroup.com, 2017). the current per capita consumption of water in Qatar current averages around 5000 liters per day. The Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute’s research director, Adel Shariff, stresses that this consumption is noted to be well above that of other high income countries such as Australia with a per capita consumption of 290 liters of water each day, France with a daily per capita consumption of 164 liters and the United Kingdom with a daily per capita consumption of water that averages to 150 liters (Oxfordbusinessgroup.com, 2017). The high per capita daily consumption of water in Qatar places the country alongside another three Gulf Cooperation Council countries that are among the seven countries predicted to be at risk of experiencing extreme water shortage by 2040 (Oxfordbusinessgroup.com, 2017).

The high demand for water and electricity in Qatar that has been precipitated by the country’s rapidly increasing population growth rate is having a major impact on KAHRAMAA’s operations. This is because the corporation has been forced to place a lot of focus in expanding its water and electricity supply and distribution capabilities. To increase the volume of water that it supplies to the country’s residents, KAHRAMAA is currently working on a number of projects that include the construction of additional reservoirs in many of the existing water stations as well as the construction of additional water stations aimed at meeting the growing demand of water in the country (KAHRAMAA, 2017b). The growing demand for electricity in the country is affecting KAHRAMAA’s operation as the company was forced to invest in a strategy that saw it increase the number of distribution substations to over 10,000 substations by the first quarter of 2014. These were then increased to 12,000 substations by 2017. To increase the length of cables in its transmission networks as well as that of the overhead cable lines in-line with its expansion operations, KAHRAMAA allocated a budget of $9 billion in the 2009-2012 period. This amount is seen to have been considerably more than the $6 billion in total electricity sector investments that had been made by the company since its establishment in 2000 up until 2008 (KAHRAMAA, 2017a).

2.1.5: Technological Factors

In a PESTLE analysis, technological factors include all the various technological advances that might be affecting the company’s operations. It is important for corporations such as KAHRAMAA to integrate any new relevant technologies into their operations if they are to increase their effectiveness and remain competitive. A major technological factor affecting KAHRAMAA’s operations is that most of the power in the country is generated using fossil-fuel power stations (KAHRAMAA, 2017a). Fossil-fuel power plants generally electricity by burning fossil fuels such as petroleum, gas or coal to generate electricity. These power stations are designed on a large scale to sustain continuous operation. In most developed countries, fossil-fuel power plants are being gradually replaced by nuclear power plants that are able to generate a larger quantity of cleaner electrical power. KAHRAMAA should consider developing nuclear power stations in the country as not only will this reduce the corporation’s over-reliance on fossil-fuel to generate electricity, it will also help it in reducing its emission of greenhouse gasses.

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Another technological factor affecting KAHRAMAA’s operations is in respect to the technologies that it employs in its water desalination plants. At the moment, there are only two major desalination processes that are employed in the large-scale desalination of sea-water, these are membrane-based desalination and thermal based desalination. The Water desalination processes that are employed by KAHRAMAA are primarily the Multiple-Effect-Distillation (MED) and the Multi-Stage-Flash (MSF) processes that work by first evaporating out the water before proceeding to re-condense it (Elimelech & Phillip, 2011). Due to its geographic location, the only available source of water for KAHRAMAA’s desalination is drawn from the Arabian Gulf. The semi-enclosed nature of the Gulf coupled with the region’s high evaporation rate of about 1.4-2.1 m/year is responsible for the Gulf’s shallow and hyper-saline nature (Nadim et al., 2008). The average surface salinity of the water in the Gulf is about 40ppt, while the average depth of water is only about 35m. The temperatures in the region range from about 22oC – 33oC (Sale et al., 2011). The physical characteristics of this region that include hyper-salinity, high temperatures, the presence of marine organism as well as turbidity have played a key role in influencing the choice by KAHRAMAA to use thermal based desalination technologies as opposed to membrane-based desalination technologies.

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Recent advances in membrane-based desalination processes such as reverse osmosis that work by force feeding water through a thin semi-permeable membrane that not only dissolves ions but also serves to block out a range of particulates have helped to either reduce or completely eliminate the pre-treatment costs that had previously made the process unattractive for desalination companies such as KAHRAMAA (Misdan, Lau and Ishmail, 2012). At the moment, reverse osmosis desalination technologies enjoy a greater degree of energy efficiency as compared to the thermal based processes. KAHRAMAA should consider adopting reverse osmosis water desalination processes so as improve the effectiveness and efficiency of its operations as well as ensure that it is easily able to maintain the quality of drinking water as per the international standards. According to Kovessy (2015), KAHRAMAA recently announced that it has awarded contracts worth billions of dollars to a number of companies to construct new water storage tanks and desalination plants. When awarding such contracts in future, KAHRAMAA should consider asking the companies that it awards the contracts to install water desalination plants that utilize reverse osmosis processes.

2.1.6: Legal Factors

Legal Factors in a PESTLE Analysis pertain to legislation that affects the business environment. As it was established by the passing of an Emiri Law (Emiri Law number 10), KAHRAMAA was at first a government owned company before it was publicized and the majority of its shares came to be owned by private sector entities (KAHRAMAA, 2017). KAHRAMAA’s water desalination and electricity production activities are outsourced and this allows for the company to focus on distribution. The recent passing of a government legislation to discontinue the subsidization of oil and electricity in the country has affected the water and electricity sector’s business environment as it is now more expensive to desalinate water or generate electricity.

2.1.7: Environmental Factors

In a PESTLE Analysis, environmental factors include the impact of the company’s operations on the weather, climate, and environment. The generation of electrical power and the desalination of water using fossil fuels such as oil and gas has the effect of causing KAHRAMAA’s operations to have a range of negative environmental effects. The nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide gas emissions from plants such as the Ras Abu Aboud power and desalination plant that supplies KAHRAMAA with electrical power are harmful to the individuals living in the areas surrounding these power plants (KAHRAMAA, 2017a). These pollutants can create harmful smog that in turn causes the surrounding community to develop severe respiratory disorders. In addition to this, the emission of carbon dioxide by KAHRAMAA’s electricity and water desalination plants has the effect of contributing to global warming.

2.2 Analysis of KAHRAMAA’s Internal Business Environment: SWOT Analysis

A SWOT analysis is an analytical tool that is commonly used by corporations and other business enterprises to aid them in the assessment of themselves in respect to other competing corporations. A SWOT analysis provides a quick way of examining the prevailing business environment as well as determining the changes that might affect this environment in future. A SWOT analysis examines the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats of a business organization or corporation.

2.2.1: Strengths

One of the main strengths that are enjoyed by KAHRAMAA is that the corporation was set up by the passing of Emiri Law number 10 to be Qatar’s sole electricity and water distribution owner and system operator. As such, the company faces little to no competition in the distribution of water or transmission of electricity within Qatar. An associated-strength to this is that KAHRAMAA enjoys significant support from the Qatari government in the form of financial support.

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Another strength that KAHRAMAA enjoys is that as the company does not involve itself directly in the desalination of water and generation of electrical power, it is easy for it to expand its operations as it will only need to give out more contracts for the supply of water and electricity. The corporations existing facilities can as such be harnessed to support the generation of more power without the company necessarily having to secure more land and human resources. Another strength that is enjoyed by KAHRAMAA is that the company has been able to significantly reduce the costs it incurs in the transmission of electricity and distribution of water by employing a strategy of encouraging the companies that it contracts generate electricity and desalinate water on behalf of KAHRAMAA to locate their plants in the main load centers. This is seen to be the case with the location of the Ras Abu Fontas power plant within the Ras Abu Aboud industrial district in Doha.

A key strength displayed by KAHRAMAA is that it has embarked on a project of working to diversity its energy sources. While KAHRAMAA has traditionally relied on the use of steam turbine power plants to support the generation of electrical power, recent advances have seen it diversify its sources of power by increasing its investment in solar power. According to Varghese (2016), KAHRAMAA is on record as having committed itself to deploying a minimum of 200MW of solar energy by 2020. At the moment, the corporation has planned several significant projects including the setting up of a 100MW solar farm that the will comprise of an estimated 800,000sqm of photovoltaic panels. This project will go a long way towards helping Qatar in attaining its goal of producing at least 20% of its electricity from solar power by the year 2030 (Varghese, 2016).

2.2.2: Weaknesses

One of the main weaknesses affecting KAHRAMAA is that the company has not been quick to replace its electricity transmission and water distribution technologies with new modern equipment. In addition to this, the companies that KAHRAMAA has contracted to generate electricity and desalinate water on its behalf are also observed to be using relatively dated technologies. This has proven to be a significant weakness for the company as it has reduced the efficiency of its operations. KAHRAMAA is affected by operational issues as it does not directly control the desalination of water or the generation of electricity. It’s lack of control of the water desalination and electricity generation plants is a weakness that limits the control that the company has in respect to the operations of these plants. In the event of a technical breakdown, KAHRAMAA has no control over how soon normal water and electricity supply will resume.

2.2.3: Opportunities

One of the main opportunities available for KAHRAMAA is that it can participate in various long-term investment initiatives. Some of these include the plans to expand its solar power generation capabilities by 2020; the development of new electricity substations; and the expansion or upgrading of the old electricity substations. In respect to the distribution of water in the country, KAHRAMAA has embarked on a long-term project that will see it increase its reservoir capacity. At the moment, the amount of water that can be held in Qatar’s reservoirs will be enough for only 48 hours. However, KAHRAMAA is working to increase the number of water reservoirs in the country such that they will be able to hold at least a week’s worth of water supply based on the 2026 water demand forecasts. Once this objective has been attained the project will then move on to its second stage of increasing its water storage capabilities to a week’s worth of water based on the 2036 water demand forecasts (Kovessy, 2015).

Another opportunity that can be taken advantage of by the company is that there have been positive trends in Qatar’s water and Energy sectors. The demand for water and electricity in the country is growing at a relatively exponential rate and this is driving KAHRAMAA to support projects that serve to increase the volume of water and amount of electricity that it supplies in the country and as a direct result also increase its profit margins.

2.2.4: Threats

KAHRAMAA is threatened by the operational issues that result from its having little control over the electricity generation and water desalination plants that supply it with water and electricity for distribution. KAHRAMAA needs to develop a system that will allow for it to enjoy more control over these plants. Another threat that is affecting the corporation is the recent fluctuation affecting the price of electricity. The removal of the government subsidies on electrical power in the country triggered a sharp increase in the price of electricity in the country (Kovessy, 2016). This fluctuation in the price of electricity has negatively affected the demand for the product.

2.3: Porter’s Five Forces Analysis of the Level of Competition within KAHRAMAA’s Electricity Transmission and Water Distribution Industry

The Porter’s five forces is an analytical tool that provides a framework that can be used in the evaluation of the intensity of the competition that exists within a given industry. By understanding the level of competition that exists within an industry, it is possible for companies and corporations that plan on venturing into a new industry to determine the attractiveness of that industry. Companies that already operate within a given industry can conduct Porter’s five forces analysis to determine the degree of threat that might be offered by any new competitors that happen to venture into their market.

Read more on Porter’s Five Forces Strategy Analysis 

2.3.1: Competitive Rivalry: Low

As KAHRAMAA was set up by the passing of Emiri Law number 10 to operate as the sole electricity and water distribution corporation in Qatar, the threat of competitive rivalry that the corporation is exposed to is relatively low (KAHRAMAA, 2017). As the sole water and electricity distributor in the country, KAHRAMAA enjoys the loyalty of all its customers.

2.3.2: Threat of New Entrants: Low

While the electricity and water distribution industry are relatively attractive as a due to the exponential growth that it has experienced on the back of the influx of expatriates in the country, the threat of new entrants into this market is low. This is because not only would the setting up of a power supply and water distribution network be prohibitively expensive, there is little to no possibility that the Qatari government will enact a new Emiri law to allow for the operation of a corporation that would compete with KAHRAMAA.

2.3.3: Threat of Substitution: Low

Electricity and water are basic necessities and as such there are no substitute products that can be used to replace them. However, the recent fluctuations in the cost of electricity coupled with the government’s drive to promote the use of solar energy might drive some Qatari’s into installing their own solar electricity panels so as to substitute the power that they receive from KAHRAMAA with cheaper solar power (Varghese, 2016).

2.3.4: Bargaining Power of Suppliers: Low

The companies that supply KAHRAMAA with the water and electricity that it distributes have low bargaining power as they rely on obtaining contracts from KAHRAMAA so as for them to find an outlet for the water and electrical power that they produce (Kovessy, 2015). In addition to this, KAHRAMAA’s powerful position allow for it to be able to negotiate for the best prices with its suppliers.

2.3.5: Bargaining Power of Buyers: Low

The bargaining power of buyers in the market in which KAHRAMAA operates in is low. This is because KAHRAMAA is the sole supplier of the water and electricity that is used by people in the country. The electricity and water distribution market in Qatar is served by only one company, KAHRAMAA. As such, KAHRAMAA’s customers (buyers) do not have any other company that they can possibly turn to so as to obtain similar products to those which they are able to obtain from KAHRAMAA.

3.0: The Processes and Systems that have been Implemented by KAHRAMAA to respond to these Stimuli

To respond the Stimuli that have been identified by the results of this environmental analysis, KAHRAMAA has set in place a number of processes and systems that include its working with the government to expand the country’s supply of water and electricity via the funding of more water reservoirs, electricity substations as well as water desalination plants (KAHRAMAA 2017a: KAHRAMAA, 2017b). The expansion of Qatar’s water supply network is intended to help in covering the entire country with a water pipeline network as opposed to the current system where some regions are only covered by water tankers. These processes are intended to address the stimuli of a growing demand for electricity and water in the country due to various social and economic factors in addition to dealing with the threat of the country having a low supply of water in its reservoirs. To address the question of the environmental pollution that is emitted by power plants in the country as well as its not using modern technologies, KAHRAMAA is responding to these stimuli by setting up solar power electricity generation plants that it hopes will allow for the country to attain its goal of producing at least 20% of its electricity by the year 2030 (Varghese, 2016). To help in speeding up the expansion of its electricity and water networks, KAHRAMAA has instituted a new system where new tenders are prepared within 3 months and shop drawings and detailed designs are reviewed and commented upon within a maximum of one month.

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Saddam Hussein’s Atrocities Research Paper

Introduction

Various reasons can result in particular people being considered as having monstrous qualities. In the recent past, Saddam Hussein is one of those people who might be regarded as being monstrous. His actions against his subjects and those who were opposed to his regime were atrocious. While some may argue that Saddam’s actions were driven by the advice from those surrounding him and the immense opposition based on religious affiliations, his actions were not justifiable.

Saddam Hussein, who was born in 1937, served as Iraq’s fifth president from 1979 to 2003 when the United States led forces ousted him (Light et al. 389-415). Before becoming the president, Saddam had been a leading figure in the Socialist Arab Ba’ath Party, and later the Iraqi Ba’ath party. The party espoused Ba’athism, which is a combination of both socialism and Arab nationalism (Frantzman 194). Earlier in his political career and as a student, Saddam participated in the attempted assassination of the then president, Abd al-Karim Qasim (Frantzman 196). One, can therefore, conclude that Saddam had revolutionary ideologies, considering that he had attempted to assassinate the president at a young age. After failing in the assassination, Saddam fled to Egypt where he continued studying for his law degree (Frantzman 197). Saddam returned to Iraq after the killing of Qasim. He remained instrumental in the Ba’ath party, and he was appointed the president in 1979 (Light et al. 396). Saddam orchestrated the one party state where he practiced his dictatorial and inhumane leadership.

Saddam Housein’s Atrocities

Saddam started his ruthless actions after he became the president. Records indicate that Saddam maintained torture chambers where the majority of his opponents were tortured to death. Besides, Saddam’s Sunni Islam members filled the majority of the positions of power, despite being less than 20% of the Iraqi population (Lawson 356). Consequently, the regime was faced with a lot of resistance that led to some of Saddam’s atrocious acts.

Dujail Killings

Saddam ordered the deaths of 148 Shiite men and boys in the village of Dujail in 1982 (Light et al. 400). He ordered the killings after an attempted assassination. These murders marked the beginning of his murderous rule. While there were attempts to assassinate him, the murder of 148 people was unnecessary. There were no investigations to ascertain the perpetrators of the assassination (Murauskaite 52). Besides, the people who were accused of orchestrating the assassination attempt should have been given a fair hearing in a court of law. Rather, Saddam took the law in his arms and ordered for their killing, without trial or a fair hearing. Furthermore, young boys who might not have been part of the plan were also killed. The killings generated much concern both locally and internationally (Frantzman 196). Therefore, one could argue that Saddam had monstrous qualities since he ordered the mass murder of 148 people without trial or hearing. The killings were based on hearsay.

The 1988 Al-Anfal Campaign

Saddam instituted a genocidal campaign against the Kurdish population from February to September 1988. Saddam’s cousin, Gen. Ali Hassan al-Majid oversaw the Al-Anfal operation that resulted in the deaths of more than 50,000 Kurdish people (Sassoon 30). Kurdish officials and international human rights organizations argue that approximately 182,000 people were killed during the operation (Frantzman 194). The executions were carried using chemical weapons such as nerve gas and mustard gas. The attacks in the Northern Kurdish region were aimed at defeating the Kurdish Peshmerga forces that had started a rebellion against his regime (Frantzman 160). The chemical weapons attacks targeted the entire Kurdish region population and not the rebels only. However, Saddam maintained that the Iran had orchestrated the attacks. The United States, nonetheless, found that Saddam’s regime was responsible for the attacks to quell the rebellion. Therefore, Saddam’s actions of killing his subjects are monstrous.

Besides, the attacks targeted the whole population in the Kurdish region, without consideration whether one participated in the rebellion or not. The killings were vastly criticized by the United States and the entire world. The media and many human rights organizations termed the killings as a genocide targeting the Kurdish Muslims (Lawson 344).

During the 1988 Anfal campaign, civilians were also attacked in the town of Halabja. The Iraqi forces dropped bombs that contained nerve and mustard gasses on the civilian population, resulting in the deaths of more than 5,000 men, women, and children (Coughlin 56). This act is considered as one of the most gruesome crimes in the recent past since it led to the death of more than 5000 people on a single day (Frantzman 196). Other than the immediate deaths, many people still suffer from medical conditions and congenital disabilities resulting from the gas poisoning. The summary killing of civilians is a monstrous act.

The Iran-Iraq War

Saddam Hussein initiated the eight-year-old Iran-Iraq war in 1980. Saddam invaded Iran after several historical border disputes. Saddam’s fear that the Iranian revolution of 1979 would inspire insurgency amongst Iraqis suppressed Shiite majority further motivated the invasion (Murauskaite 64). Saddam also wanted to dethrone Iran as the dominant state in the Gulf region (Murauskaite 68). However, an analysis of the causes of the war reveals that the attack was unnecessary. The war resulted in the deaths and injuries of more than one million Iranian and Iraqi civilians and soldiers. Furthermore, the war caused an economic loss of more than $675 billion (Coughlin 56). Therefore, Saddam’s actions of starting a war based on unfounded rationale were monstrous. Saddam led to the destruction of property, death, and displacement of numerous people to protect his personal interests.

Also, Saddam also attacked the Shiite Muslim population using chemical weapons, further escalating his injustices against civilians (Frantzman 197). The war attracted criticism and support alike from different nations. It further intensified divisions between nations such as China and the United States. Nonetheless, Saddam bore the majority of the responsibility for the war. Therefore, it could be argued that Saddam had monstrous qualities since he started a war that led to the deaths and suffering of many people. The war founded on his personal interests and the interests global leaders who were against the dominance of Iran in the Gulf region.

The 1980 Fayli Deportations and Killings

In 1980, Saddam oversaw the killings of thousands of the Fayli sect members. Additionally, more than 500,000 members of the sect were deported to Iran (Sassoon 40). His actions were founded on the belief that the sect members were Iranians, hence enemies. The Saddam regime imprisoned and put many Fayli women and children into concentration camps for no apparent reason. Such acts by a president could be considered as monstrous. Rather than protecting and taking care of his subjects, Saddam persecuted them. The Fayli sect members had not rebelled against Saddam’s rule. However, Saddam perceived them as enemies since they did not belong to his Shiite religion (Light et al. 402). The regime’s act of killing and deporting the Fayli people received condemnation from Iran and other global leaders. Human rights organizations termed Saddam’s actions a persecution of the minorities.

The Barzani Abductions

Saddam authorized his forces to abduct 8,000 men and boys from the Barzani after realizing that the clan was affiliated to the Iraq-based Kurdistan Democratic Party during the Iraq-Iran war (Murauskaite 53). Some boys were as young as ten disappeared. It is reported that more than 5,000 abductees were never released, thus suggesting that they were executed (Light et al. 389). Massoud Barzani, the clan’s leader, was also abducted. A decade later, the remains of 512 Barzani men were found signifying that the rest of the abductees could have been killed (Lawson 364). However, Saddam denied the allegations, citing Iran for the abductions. However, in 2005 a letter that directly linked Saddam with the killings was discovered in Baghdad (Frantzman 194). Therefore, it can be argued that Saddam authorized the massacre and abduction more than 8,000 people because they were affiliated with the KDP party. One can, therefore, conclude that Saddam’s actions were monstrous in nature.

The Kuwait Invasion

In August 1990, Saddam invaded Kuwait aiming at occupying it and making it a part of Iraq. The invasion led to the Gulf war. The Saddam regime accused Kuwait of stealing Iraqi’s money through slant drilling (Coughlin 66). However, it was later revealed that the war had been planned several months before the invasion. Iraq occupied Kuwait for more than seven months, naming it as the nineteenth province of Iraq until the US intervened in the war militarily (Frantzman 168). However, it later became evident that Saddam had invaded Kuwait due to Iraq’s inability to repay a debt of more than $14 billion that it had incurred during the Iraq-Iran war (Light et al. 413). Furthermore, Kuwait was producing more petroleum than Iraq, thus affecting Iraqis revenues. Therefore, it can be seen that Saddam had initiated a war with Kuwait for selfish reasons. Furthermore, the Iraqi forces torched more than 600 oil wells in Kuwait. The occupation resulted in many fatalities and economic forces, yet there were no reasons to warrant the war. The US intervened in the war militarily to liberate Kuwait. Besides, Saddam’s regime received condemnation from many global leaders.

Crimes against Humanity

Saddam oversaw many crimes against humanity and acts that could be considered as genocidal against Shi’a Arabs and the Marsh Arabs in southern Iraq (Murauskaite 57). In some instances, entire villages were forcibly expelled. Furthermore, Saddam authorized the burning of their fields and houses, the demolition of their homes using bulldozers, and deliberate campaigns to eliminate the Marshes from Iraq by poisoning them with nerve and mustard gasses (Frantzman 195). Saddam summarily executed thousands of civilians for reasons such as not belonging to his faith and opposing his regime. Hence, it can be argued that Saddam was monstrous since he had little regard for human life.

Supporting International Terrorism

Saddam supported terrorists to the extent of paying them, funding their activities, and sheltering them in Iraq. The terrorists that he supported were responsible for various terrorist activities as well as the killing of United States citizens. For instance, Saddam sheltered various prominent Palestinian terrorist organizations such as the Palestine Liberation Front in Baghdad (Murauskaite 52). The terrorists were renowned for aerial attacks against Israel. Abu Abbas, who had hijacked a ship and murdered a US citizen in 1985, led the terrorist organization (Murauskaite 53). Furthermore, in 2002, Saddam increased the allowances to Palestinian suicide bombers from $10,000 to $25,000 (Coughlin 46). He ensured that there were strict scales which indicated the payments for injuries, disablement, and death during the suicide missions. Saddam made sure that the bomber’s families received the money for the death of their relatives as martyrs. Hence, it can be argued that Saddam’s actions were monstrous in nature. He had no total regard for humans since he was exploiting uneducated and poor people by urging them to die as martyrs.

Biological Weapons

In the lead up to the 2003 Iraq invasion, many defectors of the Saddam regime indicated that there were various biological weapons production plants in Iraq (Light et al. 396). Further, in 1995, a senior Iraq defector stated that Iraq had weaponized thousands of liters anthrax, aflatoxin, and botulinum toxin to be used in aerial bombs, scud heads, and aircraft (Coughlin 39). Besides, there were clear indicators that Iraqi had an advanced nuclear production program. Also, Saddam had been sourcing for nuclear components for his program (Frantzman 198). His nuclear program was not founded on any threats. Therefore, from these actions, Saddam could be considered as monstrous. The world had resolved to quit the production of chemical and biological weapons, yet Iraqi was actively producing them. Besides, these chemicals were used on the civilian population.

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Post Occupancy Evaluation Research Paper

Hannelore Christianens, an architect by profession, notes that professionals in his line of work should show concern for the buildings they build after delivery.  It is true that in building construction’s formative years, the handover was seen as the last and final stage of their close involvement in the project. Here is where the concept of  Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) comes in handy. Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) is an act of scrutinizing buildings after handing them over to the clients to check whether the environmental performance put to use relates to the purpose the building. In many occasions, there is a great disparity between the two. Architects, in particular, carry out Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) for many reasons, the most common being user behavior; but additionally, poor design and construction are also primary concerns.

Importance of a Post Occupancy Evaluation

During the design process, the prioritization of multiple considerations such as efficiency, client goals, function, flexibility, and branding take center stage during this initial stage. A Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) now becomes an ideal tool to assess the success of a design’s success. Traditional designers made no effort to look back at the designs that they would complete (Preiser, Rabinowitz, and White.). Many clients, after about a year of occupancy in a residential house, often deal with construction faults, improper use of design and most of these cases are brought up in anecdotal client reports. The gathering and evaluation of all empirical data from all clients in a residential building allow its designer to develop a complete picture of how the structure is mitigating all external factors together with the conditions that arise inside them.

A Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) is also crucial in correcting the constructional mistakes that might have been made during building. After collecting empirical data from residents who occupy a designer’s structure, the information then goes through an evaluation stage where all the construction flaws that were evident in the building are put under scrutiny. An example is a residential building structure that lets in runoff water during storms.  It is clear that individuals living in such a house would have to grapple with the constant headache of having to devise a way which they will always have to remove this water from their houses. Additionally, the water might cause massive losses in terms of property, which mostly includes electronics. Such an analysis would assist the owners of these houses to correct all the flaws and improve client’s satisfaction.

Challenges in collecting and analyzing Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) and how to overcome them

When collecting empirical data from the respondents in a residential area, questionnaires are typically put to use to elicit information. The questionnaire usually contains information ranging from subjects such as the resident’s satisfaction level, dwellings physical characteristics, and the demographic that will be put under study. One common challenge is the timely collection of all this data and its subsequent interpretation. Glitches in the data system are common, especially if it’s large in volume. Additionally, not having enough personnel or staff to work on the database proves problematic especially during the interpretation of this data. This challenge can be dealt with by contacting individuals that fit the bill and with the necessary qualifications for data entry and data collection (Vogt, 2010). Accurate data means that the problems that have been brought to light can be dealt with easily with no wastage of resources by the firm that will be correcting these mistakes.

Another challenge stems from the fact that there are those residents that are weary of strangers or researchers of any kind seemingly invading their space. Others may have day jobs and in essence become unavailable during the day. The collection of data under such conditions would mean that there would be there is a high likelihood that it will be incomplete. Data that is incomplete often leads to an inconclusive inference that in another occasion might not echo all the true sentiments about what those residents have concerning the residential area in which they dwell in (Rea-Dickins and Germaine, 1992). For a start, the researcher can decide to first go through the overall owner of the building structure to first inform him of their intentions. The owner would then have to inform the tenants in this residential building that the research would be taking place and that they should expect them during a specific week. Furthermore, the researchers should choose days that they are very likely to find all the respondents, i.e weekends or national holidays. During the week, it is common to find houses under lock and key when occupants have to go to school or to work. Weekends and holidays, thus increase the chances of finding respondents in their homes.

Recommendations on how to improve the performance of an apartment

It is possible to improve the performance of an apartment to make an even more conducive environment for those who are inhabiting them. A resident that gets the offer of satisfaction often lives a happy life when they know that the apartment, that is their abode, offers them perfect serenity. One way that can improve the performance of an apartment is the building is to ensure that the residents do not suffer from the excessive direct light that enters the house from every direction (Weller and Romney, 1998). If this is the case, the residents are faced with a situation where they live a life devoid of the comfort that one expects to get from being in their home. Furthermore, buildings that have smart windows that control the amount of light entering a house can be a step in the right direction in helping residents find comfort in their homes.

Another simple way in which the performance of an apartment can improve is by communicating with the occupants constantly to know their likes and preference.  A tenant’s preference may lead the owner to tweak the house to create an environment in which they feel safe and happy to be in. There are certain clients who would prefer to have a house that is sky blue in color as this is what makes them safe and calm. Working with the client’s preference goes a long way in ensuring that an apartment suits the particular occupant, improving the overall experience.

Use Of Code-Switching (CS) In Hong Kong – Literature Review

Literature Review

Humans are social beings by nature. Every so often, they find the need to interact by way of holding conversations with one another. Nonetheless, the process of interaction between two or more people is not always straightforward. Myriad, issues continually arise during regular interactions such as language barrier or incoherent accent. Still, one of the rapidly emerging trends in modern day conversational interaction is the practice of code switching. Simply put, code switching refers to the use of a number of dialects in an alternating fashion during conversation. It is not unique to a particular type of people. Everyone probably does it from time to time; sometimes even without knowing. Neither is it exclusive to a particular region in the world. This paper takes particular interest in the Use Of Code-Switching (CS) In Hong Kong. Specifically, it reviews many works of literature that cover various dimensions of the code switching in the region.

One piece of research title: A diachronic-functional approach to explaining grammatical patterns in Code-switching: Post-modification in Cantonese–English noun phrases from the International Journal of Bilingualism, 2015 offers deep analysis of the development of the various morphological practices in Hong Kong. Cantonese is the main ethnic language in mainland China, originally spoken in the region of Guangzhou (Chan, 2015). This article explores the practice of borrowing from either language to form different words that contribute immensely to the code-switching scenario in Hong Kong. Frequently, people find them in situations whereby they must say something but have no idea how to express themselves fluently to their audience (Chan, 2015). During such instances, they involuntarily create specific words that notably sport elements of both languages. Chan, the author, deftly describes this type of code switching which involves a process he terms as ‘reinsertion’; a process, which includes inserting a post-modifier along with an English noun head in the middle of a Cantonese sentence. Ideally, the sentence resumes its Cantonese tone soon after the modifier. His overall verdict on the issue, however, is that there is no single acceptable formula for the practice of code switching. Participants always keep inventing their funny ways of fusing languages to suit them.

Another similar research entitled Code scaffolding: A Pedagogic Code-switching Technique for Bilingual Content Instruction was conducted by Fennema-Bloom under the Journal of Education. The continued dominance of code switching in a speech in Hong Kong receives, even more, backing from the author in this literature. She is inclined towards vouching for the acceptance of code switching in teaching. Moving on, she notes with particular interest that code switching would come in handy for bilingual tutors who are looking to make lessons more comprehensible to the students. The research conducted in this literature sought to verify the impact of code switching in formal education. The study yielded positive results thanks to the incorporation of code-switching practices in the teaching methodologies. In the literature, the author repeatedly likens code switching to the scaffolding techniques commonly used by monolingual tutors. She argues that CS has much greater pedagogic values than most people do realize. Often, tutors are at a loss on what to do when their students fail to respond appropriately to their studies due to the difficult language used in the classroom (Fennema-Bloom, 2010). This literature shows that code switching, or in this case, scaffolding goes a long way to ensure better understanding in students. It creates a link between the languages that the students are already proficient in with the one that they intend to acquire knowledge of presently.

One article that sheds more light on the code switching practice in Hong Kong is English Medium Secondary Schools: Privileged Orphans in the SAR. Authored by Sean O’Halloran of the Hong Kong Institute of Education, this literature addresses the dilemma bedeviling English Medium Schools in Hong Kong on whether to embrace bilingualism or stick to their previous diglossic ideologies. It does not help that English is an official language in the region, a large part of the population is still not proficient in it. School going student are not an exception either, as they all show signs of slow mastery of the language. In light of this issue, the department had thus, proposed the use of mixed codes in the educational curriculum (O’Halloran, 2001). The article appears to embrace the code switching narrative, citing various reasons why it may work to the advantage of the entire Hong Kong community. In as much as students are the primary target population addressed by the article, the ideologies presented no doubt apply to the public as well (O’Halloran, 2001). If anything, the students represent a vital fraction of the population. Furthermore, it gives the international students a good chance of integrating into the society with great ease.

Still in the realm of education, the article, The Politics of Bilingualism: A Reproduction Analysis of the Policy of Mother Tongue Education in Hong Kong After 1997analyzes the changes in the various languages in the region on the educational system. It is quite clear from the onset that the education system of Hong Kong his responsible for the development or demise of language in the region. Just like the above-reviewed literature, it attempts to explain the process of transition providing reasons for or against the assimilation of particular etymological trends. Evidently, there has been a lengthy exchange concerning the relevance of English and local Chinese dialects in the region. Pak-Sang and Byram (2003) provides an enlightening breakdown of this issue starting from the colonial days to the present. Back then, the educational system consisted of the English medium schools (government schools) and the local Chinese schools (Pak-Sang &Byram, 2003). In these institutions, learning was conducted through English and vernacular respectively. Over time, the use of the local Chinese languages began to dwindle thanks to the emergence of other foreign languages in Hong Kong. Nonetheless, the government reportedly moved in to salvage the situation by restructuring into a bilingual system (Pak-Sang &Byram, 2003). As illustrated by the article, a bilingual system provides a conducive environment for the practicing of code switching. Ideally, code switching thrives in a situation whereby the speakers feel they are fluent in both languages.

Intriguing yet, is the literature by Peter Mark, and James Reagan titled Current Attitudes Towards Language And Code Mixing InHong Kong. Largely, this research exhibits different elements from the above-reviewed pieces of literature. While the others cover analyses conducted with the primary intention of establishing the dominance of code switching in Hong Kong, instead it studies the behaviors of the people Hong Kong most of which even attempt to disapprove the fact that CS is a popular trend in the region. According to authors, the people of Hong Kong are naturally conservative and do not fancy abandoning their ways for foreign ways. They attribute this to the continued use of the Cantonese language among the large part of the native Hong Kong population, which explains the reason they prefer using their mother tongue to English. Interestingly, they posit that the most common trend in Hong Kong is in fact, code mixing and not code switching. Going forward, they offer a descriptive analysis of the two concepts in the hope of distinguishing between the two. One noticeable difference is that code-mixing involves improvising of particular words from one language to another (Mark & Regan, 2005). On the other hand, code switching means the insertion of foreign words in mid-sentence (intrasentential)(Mark & Regan, 2005). Eventually, it satisfactorily establishes that the population’s attitudes towards a language can affect its development.

Another informative article on this subject is Cantonese-English code-switching research in Hong Kong: a Y2K review put together by Li. In this literature, Li embarks on a journey of reviewing other studies previously conducted on code-switching in Hong Kong. Among other things, he performs an in-depth analysis of various theories in the realm of code switching (Luke’s model). Besides, he also discusses factors that inspire the culture or practice of code switching. The disapproving attitude of the Hong Kong population towards the use of English in their daily social life is a reality (Li, 2000). According to Li, this behavior necessitates the need for code-switching in particular situations that call for the use of English. English is a national language in the region. In addition to the ever-growing dominance of the language on the international platform, it is also used in the country for official purposes (Li, 2000). Despite their constant refusal to embrace the use of English, Hong Kong’s history quickly defines it as a bilingual society and as such it is only advisable for them to embrace it or the go the code switching way.

Separating language from culture is impossible. Naturally, language and culture occur together, and any attempt to separate the two always proves futile. Another article entitled Toward a social psychology of bilingualism and biculturalism authored by Sylvia Xiaohua Chen under the Asian Journal of Social Psychology puts this ideology into context. It does not address the subject of code switching directly, but instead, it explores certain aspects of nature that contribute to the development of particular social behavior, which includes code-switching and its counterpart code mixing. One of the main factors that define culture is language (Chen, 2015). It is the unique component that helps distinguish one culture from the other. As highlighted earlier, human beings are friendly creatures. They encounter people from other cultures as they interact with one another leading to the assimilation of individual aspects of either culture (Chen, 2015). Language is by far the most notorious culprit in this respect. Repeatedly, people have proved to be quite susceptible to the influences from foreign languages. Often, the result is either complete assimilation of the new language or the automatic incorporation of aspects of the external language into the native language. This explanation no doubt sheds more light on the dilemma surrounding the origin of these linguistic practices in communities such as Hong Kong. According to the author, this is a common trend in most bilingual and bicultural societies.

Moving on, another piece of literature, A Corpus-based Analysis of Mixed Code in Hong Kong Speech penned by John Lee provides a fresh perspective on the subject matter. John Lee embarks on an elaborate study to establish the behavioral habits that create the different speech exhibited by people in Hong Kong. The author achieves this by reviewing hundreds of speeches delivered during television programs in the area. Also, he probes the real motivation behind such behaviors in the people. The results showed that code switching was indeed a common practice although not as prominent as in other societies (Lee, 2012). This study went a long way to confirm the tense situation between the natives and the language, English. It gets even more confusing when one stops to reconsider the statics that in the real sense do not add up no matter how much one tries to evaluate (Lee, 2012). The author notes that about 43% of the Hong Kong population can speak English fluently. Nevertheless, the community’s conservative nature does not allow for the complete dominance of English. The most it can do for them is serving as an embedded language; an opinion shared in other literature.

Another excellent book on code switching is Language in Hong Kong at century’s end by Martha Pennington under the Hong Kong University Press. Indeed, it portrays high similarity in both content and context with Chan’s research as discussed above. In comparison, they both pore over the development of code switching and code mixing concerning the two dominant languages in Hong Kong; English and the native Cantonese dialect. Similarly, both corroborate the fact that English is dominant despite not being a favorite with the local population. Nevertheless, Martha delves deeper into the subject imparting invaluable information regarding the composition of words in code mixing and sentence structure in codeswitching. In verification, she states that code switching involves the inclusion of English pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and nouns in an initially Cantonese sentence. It should, however, be noted that the sentence structure rarely takes the different form. Naturally, it is an English word surrounded by many Cantonese words, which then creates a complete sentence.

So far, quite some authors have divulged their take on the subject of code switching and code mixing thanks to their incessant need to conduct researches on the same. In that respect to give credit where it is due. Irvine et al. (2008) put together a valuable piece in their study titled Bilinguals in Style: Linguistic Practices and Ideologies of Cantonese-English Code mixers in Hong Kong. In comparison, they deliver a simple yet comprehensive analysis of the subject much to the reader’s satisfaction (Irvine et al., 2008). The literature begins with a simple definition of code switching, goes further to state, and explains various types of code switching namely tag switching, intra-sentential, as well as inter-sentential. Most importantly, the literature identifies intra- sentential as the most dominant type of code switching around the region of Hong Kong (Irvine et al., 2008). Also, it attributes the composition of code switching and code mixing phrases/conversation to the dominance of the local Cantonese language. On the other hand, it gives the less dominant language – English – as the embedded language.

The importance of language in the community is incontestable. Among its many uses, language advances information in young minds in the society. Over the centuries, people have had to learn to become responsible individuals with the potential of contributing to the upholding of virtue in the community (Cacoullos& Travis, 2015). Nevertheless, this ideology is put at risk when there is tampering with the elements of the only medium used in instilling discipline in the society. In truth, the education system is always on the receiving end during the emergence of scenarios such as code switching (Cacoullos& Travis, 2015). While conventional learning methods are dependent on the correct use of language as is required by institutional curriculums, code switching can complicate learning. The article by Cacoullos and Travis Gauging convergence on the ground: Code-switching in the community attests to this fact. This literature provides a detailed summary of the impacts of codeswitching in the community.

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