WorldWideScience

Sample records for participatory soil improvement

  1. Practice makes perfect: participatory innovation in soil fertility management to improve rural livelihoods in East Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jager, de A.

    2007-01-01

    Keywords: soil nutrient balances, soil fertility degradation, East Africa , participatory innovation, experiential learning, farmer field schools, smallholder agriculture

    Maintaining and improving soil fertility is crucial for Africa to attain the Millennium Development Goals. Fertile

  2. Practice makes perfect: participatory innovation in soil fertility management to improve rural livelihoods in East Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Jager, de, A.

    2007-01-01

    Keywords: soil nutrient balances, soil fertility degradation, East Africa , participatory innovation, experiential learning, farmer field schools, smallholder agriculture Maintaining and improving soil fertility is crucial for Africa to attain the Millennium Development Goals. Fertile soil and balanced soil nutrient management are major foundations for sustainable food production, contribute to a sound management of natural resources and assist in controlling environmental degradation such ...

  3. Participatory GIS for Soil Conservation in Phewa Watershed of Nepal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhandari, K. P.

    2012-07-01

    Participatory Geographic Information Systems (PGIS) can integrate participatory methodologies with geo-spatial technologies for the representation of characteristic of particular place. Over the last decade, researchers use this method to integrate the local knowledge of community within a GIS and Society conceptual framework. Participatory GIS are tailored to answer specific geographic questions at the local level and their modes of implementation vary considerably across space, ranging from field-based, qualitative approaches to more complex web-based applications. These broad ranges of techniques, PGIS are becoming an effective methodology for incorporating community local knowledge into complex spatial decision-making processes. The objective of this study is to reduce the soil erosion by formulating the general rule for the soil conservation by participation of the stakeholders. The poster was prepared by satellite image, topographic map and Arc GIS software including the local knowledge. The data were collected from the focus group discussion and the individual questionnaire for incorporate the local knowledge and use it to find the risk map on the basis of economic, social and manageable physical factors for the sensitivity analysis. The soil erosion risk map is prepared by the physical factors Rainfall-runoff erosivity, Soil erodibility, Slope length, Slope steepness, Cover-management, Conservation practice using RUSLE model. After the comparison and discussion among stakeholders, researcher and export group, and the soil erosion risk map showed that socioeconomic, social and manageable physical factors management can reduce the soil erosion. The study showed that the preparation of the poster GIS map and implement this in the watershed area could reduce the soil erosion in the study area compared to the existing national policy.

  4. Experiences with Farmer Participatory Cowpea Improvement and Seed Production

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Singh, B. B.

    2000-10-01

    Farmer participatory research is not only a significant concept today but it has become an essential approach to certain aspects of contemporary agricultural research. The CGIAR has already launched a system wide program on participatory research to assess the effectiveness of this approach in plant breeding, natural resources management and gender analysis. The need for participatory research arose when some of the superior technologies identified based on the tests at experiment stations failed to gain acceptance/popularity with resource poor farmers. In most cases, there was nothing wrong with the technologies but farmers did not have access to the recommended inputs and without inputs, the new technologies were poorer, equal to or marginally better than what farmers were using. The apparent lacuna was the lack of testing of new technologies in divers conditions including marginal environments without inputs to ensure superior performance under all conditions. Since all possible test conditions cannot be created at the experiment station, it is now generally agreed that farmer participation at strategic stages may be helpful in developing improved technologies intended for resource poor conditions and traditional cropping systems. The farmer participation ensures use of indigenous knowledge, farmer's perception about the acceptable plant types, seed types and use patterns. It also permits testing of selected materials in diverse conditions and farmer to farmer diffusion of improved technologies

  5. Participatory tools working with crops, varieties and seeds. A guide for professionals applying participatory approaches in agrobiodiversity management, crop improvement and seed sector development

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boef, de W.S.; Thijssen, M.H.

    2007-01-01

    Outline to the guide Within our training programmes on local management of agrobiodiversity, participatory crop improvement and the support of local seed supply participatory tools get ample attention. Tools are dealt with theoretically, are practised in class situations, but are also applied in

  6. Through Their Eyes: Lessons Learned Using Participatory Methods in Health Care Quality Improvement Projects.

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    Balbale, Salva N; Locatelli, Sara M; LaVela, Sherri L

    2016-08-01

    In this methodological article, we examine participatory methods in depth to demonstrate how these methods can be adopted for quality improvement (QI) projects in health care. We draw on existing literature and our QI initiatives in the Department of Veterans Affairs to discuss the application of photovoice and guided tours in QI efforts. We highlight lessons learned and several benefits of using participatory methods in this area. Using participatory methods, evaluators can engage patients, providers, and other stakeholders as partners to enhance care. Participant involvement helps yield actionable data that can be translated into improved care practices. Use of these methods also helps generate key insights to inform improvements that truly resonate with stakeholders. Using participatory methods is a valuable strategy to harness participant engagement and drive improvements that address individual needs. In applying these innovative methodologies, evaluators can transcend traditional approaches to uniquely support evaluations and improvements in health care. © The Author(s) 2015.

  7. Evaluation of promising technologies for soil salinity amelioration in Timpaki (Crete): a participatory approach

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    Panagea, I. S.; Daliakopoulos, I. N.; Tsanis, I. K.; Schwilch, G.

    2016-02-01

    Soil salinity management can be complex, expensive, and time demanding, especially in arid and semi-arid regions. Besides taking no action, possible management strategies include amelioration and adaptation measures. Here we apply the World Overview of Conservation Approaches and Technologies (WOCAT) framework for the systematic analysis and evaluation and selection of soil salinisation amelioration technologies in close collaboration with stakeholders. The participatory approach is applied in the RECARE (Preventing and Remediating degradation of soils in Europe through Land Care) project case study of Timpaki, a semi-arid region in south-central Crete (Greece) where the main land use is horticulture in greenhouses irrigated by groundwater. Excessive groundwater abstractions have resulted in a drop of the groundwater level in the coastal part of the aquifer, thus leading to seawater intrusion and in turn to soil salinisation. The documented technologies are evaluated for their impacts on ecosystem services, cost, and input requirements using a participatory approach and field evaluations. Results show that technologies which promote maintaining existing crop types while enhancing productivity and decreasing soil salinity are preferred by the stakeholders. The evaluation concludes that rainwater harvesting is the optimal solution for direct soil salinity mitigation, as it addresses a wider range of ecosystem and human well-being benefits. Nevertheless, this merit is offset by poor financial motivation making agronomic measures more attractive to users.

  8. Participatory approach to improving safety, health and working conditions in informal economy workplaces in Cambodia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawakami, Tsuyoshi; Tong, Leng; Kannitha, Yi; Sophorn, Tun

    2011-01-01

    The present study aimed to improve safety and health in informal economy workplaces such as home workplaces, small construction sites, and rural farms in Cambodia by using "participatory" approach. The government, workers' and employers' organizations and NGOs jointly assisted informal economy workers in improving safety and health by using participatory training methodologies. The steps taken were: (1) to collect existing good practices in safety and health in Cambodia; (2) to develop new participatory training programmes for home workers and small construction sites referring to ILO's WISE training programme, and (3) to train government officers, workers, employers and NGOs as safety and health trainers. The participatory training programmes developed consisted of action-checklists associated with illustrations, good example photo sheets, and texts explaining practical, low-cost improvement measures. The established safety and health trainers reached many informal economy workers through their human networks, and trained them by using the developed participatory training programmes. More than 3,000 informal economy workers were trained and they implemented improvements by using low-cost methods. Participatory training methodologies and active cooperation between the government, workers, employers and NGOs made it possible to provide practical training for those involved in the informal economy workplaces.

  9. Improved Biosensors for Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silberg, J. J.; Masiello, C. A.; Cheng, H. Y.

    2014-12-01

    Microbes drive processes in the Earth system far exceeding their physical scale, affecting crop yields, water quality, the mobilization of toxic materials, and fundamental aspects of soil biogeochemistry. The tools of synthetic biology have the potential to significantly improve our understanding of microbial Earth system processes: for example, synthetic microbes can be be programmed to report on environmental conditions that stimulate greenhouse gas production, metal oxidation, biofilm formation, pollutant degradation, and microbe-plant symbioses. However, these tools are only rarely deployed in the lab. This research gap arises because synthetically programmed microbes typically report on their environment by producing molecules that are detected optically (e.g., fluorescent proteins). Fluorescent reporters are ideal for petri-dish applications and have fundamentally changed how we study human health, but their usefulness is quite limited in soils where detecting fluorescence is challenging. Here we describe the construction of gas-reporting biosensors, which release nonpolar gases that can be detected in the headspace of incubation experiments. These constructs can be used to probe microbial processes within soils in real-time noninvasive lab experiments. These biosensors can be combined with traditional omics-based approaches to reveal processes controlling soil microbial behavior and lead to improved environmental management decisions.

  10. Showing the Unsayable: Participatory Visual Approaches and the Constitution of 'Patient Experience' in Healthcare Quality Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papoulias, Constantina

    2018-06-01

    This article considers the strengths and potential contributions of participatory visual methods for healthcare quality improvement research. It argues that such approaches may enable us to expand our understanding of 'patient experience' and of its potential for generating new knowledge for health systems. In particular, they may open up dimensions of people's engagement with services and treatments which exceed both the declarative nature of responses to questionnaires and the narrative sequencing of self reports gathered through qualitative interviewing. I will suggest that working with such methods may necessitate a more reflexive approach to the constitution of evidence in quality improvement work. To this end, the article will first consider the emerging rationale for the use of visual participatory methods in improvement before outlining the implications of two related approaches-photo-elicitation and PhotoVoice-for the constitution of 'experience'. It will then move to a participatory model for healthcare improvement work, Experience Based Co-Design (EBCD). It will argue that EBCD exemplifies both the strengths and the limitations of adequating visual participatory approaches to quality improvement ends. The article will conclude with a critical reflection on a small photographic study, in which the author participated, and which sought to harness service user perspectives for the design of psychiatric facilities, as a way of considering the potential contribution of visual participatory methods for quality improvement.

  11. Improving ethical and participatory practice for marginalized populations in biomedical HIV prevention trials: lessons from Thailand.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan Allman

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: This paper presents findings from a qualitative investigation of ethical and participatory issues related to the conduct of biomedical HIV prevention trials among marginalized populations in Thailand. This research was deemed important to conduct, as several large-scale biomedical HIV prevention trials among marginalized populations had closed prematurely in other countries, and a better understanding of how to prevent similar trial closures from occurring in the future was desired. METHODS: In-depth key informant interviews were held in Bangkok and Chiang Mai, Thailand. Interviews were audio recorded, transcribed, translated and thematically analyzed. The Good Participatory Practice Guidelines for Biomedical HIV Prevention Trials (GPP guided this work. RESULTS: Fourteen interviews were conducted: 10 with policymakers, academic and community-based researchers and trial staff and four with representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs. Suggested ways to improve ethical and participatory practice centered on standards of HIV prevention, informed consent, communication and human rights. In particular, the need to overcome language and literacy differences was identified. Key informants felt communication was the basis of ethical understanding and trust within biomedical HIV prevention trial contexts, and thus fundamental to trial participants' ability to exercise free will. DISCUSSION: Biomedical HIV prevention trials present opportunities for inclusive and productive ethical and participatory practice. Key informants suggested that efforts to improve practice could result in better relationships between research stakeholders and research investigative teams and by extension, better, more ethical participatory trials. This research took place in Thailand and its findings apply primarily to Thailand. However, given the universality of many ethical considerations, the results of this study can inform the improvement of ethical

  12. Improving ethical and participatory practice for marginalized populations in biomedical HIV prevention trials: lessons from Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allman, Dan; Ditmore, Melissa Hope; Kaplan, Karyn

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents findings from a qualitative investigation of ethical and participatory issues related to the conduct of biomedical HIV prevention trials among marginalized populations in Thailand. This research was deemed important to conduct, as several large-scale biomedical HIV prevention trials among marginalized populations had closed prematurely in other countries, and a better understanding of how to prevent similar trial closures from occurring in the future was desired. In-depth key informant interviews were held in Bangkok and Chiang Mai, Thailand. Interviews were audio recorded, transcribed, translated and thematically analyzed. The Good Participatory Practice Guidelines for Biomedical HIV Prevention Trials (GPP) guided this work. Fourteen interviews were conducted: 10 with policymakers, academic and community-based researchers and trial staff and four with representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Suggested ways to improve ethical and participatory practice centered on standards of HIV prevention, informed consent, communication and human rights. In particular, the need to overcome language and literacy differences was identified. Key informants felt communication was the basis of ethical understanding and trust within biomedical HIV prevention trial contexts, and thus fundamental to trial participants' ability to exercise free will. Biomedical HIV prevention trials present opportunities for inclusive and productive ethical and participatory practice. Key informants suggested that efforts to improve practice could result in better relationships between research stakeholders and research investigative teams and by extension, better, more ethical participatory trials. This research took place in Thailand and its findings apply primarily to Thailand. However, given the universality of many ethical considerations, the results of this study can inform the improvement of ethical and participatory practice in other parts of the world where

  13. A participatory model for improving occupational health and safety: improving informal sector working conditions in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manothum, Aniruth; Rukijkanpanich, Jittra; Thawesaengskulthai, Damrong; Thampitakkul, Boonwa; Chaikittiporn, Chalermchai; Arphorn, Sara

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the implementation of an Occupational Health and Safety Management Model for informal sector workers in Thailand. The studied model was characterized by participatory approaches to preliminary assessment, observation of informal business practices, group discussion and participation, and the use of environmental measurements and samples. This model consisted of four processes: capacity building, risk analysis, problem solving, and monitoring and control. The participants consisted of four local labor groups from different regions, including wood carving, hand-weaving, artificial flower making, and batik processing workers. The results demonstrated that, as a result of applying the model, the working conditions of the informal sector workers had improved to meet necessary standards. This model encouraged the use of local networks, which led to cooperation within the groups to create appropriate technologies to solve their problems. The authors suggest that this model could effectively be applied elsewhere to improve informal sector working conditions on a broader scale.

  14. Effectiveness of participatory training on improving occupational health in small and medium enterprises in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Chuandong; Zhu, Meifeng; Yu, Tak Sun Ignatius; He, Yonghua

    2013-01-01

    Participatory training on occupational health is widely used in the world. Evaluations of local experiences are necessary to its successful performance. The project evaluated the effectiveness of participatory training on occupational health improvement in small and medium enterprises of China, and explored local practice experiences. Participatory training was provided to 525 welding workers from 25 small and medium enterprises in ship building and machinery manufacturing industries. This training consisted of interactive learning, worksite assessment and group discussion on laws/regulations, safety of machine operation, prevention of slips and trips, fire/explosion prevention, ergonomics, and recognition and prevention of other workplace hazards. Workers completed knowledge, attitude, and practice and worksite assessment questionnaires before and 3 months after intervention. Knowledge, attitude, and practice scores were significantly increased through the training. An inventory of workplace safety modifications was proposed by participants and many were fixed by workers and employers. Health management and personal protective equipment provision/use were most often improved, but improvements in engineering control and health-related accommodations remained unsatisfactory. Workers could recognize and fix workplace hazards after the participatory training. More efficient measures in China are to be explored to improve implementing solutions, especially on preventive engineering and human ergonomics.

  15. A participatory and integrative approach to improve productivity and ergonomics in assembly

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Looze, M.P. de; Rhijn, J.W. van; Deursen, J. van; Tuinzaad, G.H.; Reijneveld, C.N.

    2003-01-01

    A participatory and integrative approach was applied to improve the productivity and ergonomics of the assembly lines in two factories, producing magnetic stop valves and office furniture, respectively. Main elements of the approach are the active participation of the company and the integration of

  16. Effectiveness of a participatory ergonomics intervention in improving communication and psychosocial exposures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laing, A C; Cole, D C; Theberge, N; Wells, R P; Kerr, M S; Frazer, M B

    2007-07-01

    A participatory ergonomics programme was implemented in an automotive parts manufacturing factory in which an ergonomics change team was formed, composed of members from management, the organized labour union and the research team. It was hypothesized that the participatory nature of this change process would result in enhanced worker perceptions of workplace communication dynamics, decision latitude and influence, which in conjunction with anticipated mechanical exposure reductions would lead to reduced worker pain severity. Utilizing a sister plant in the corporation as a referent group, a quasi-experimental design was employed with a longitudinal, repeat questionnaire approach to document pre-post intervention changes. Nine participatory activities (psychosocial interventions) were implemented as part of the process. Communication dynamics regarding ergonomics were significantly enhanced at the intervention plant compared to the referent plant. However, there were no significantly different changes in worker perceptions of decision latitude or influence between the two plants, nor did pain severity change. Possible explanations for these results include limited intervention intensity, context and co-intervention differences between the two plants, high plant turnover reducing the statistical power of the study and lack of sensitivity and specificity in the psychosocial measures used. Further research should include the development of psychosocial tools more specific to participatory ergonomic interventions and the assessment of the extent of change in psychosocial factors that might be associated with improvements in pain.

  17. Improving the quality of maternal and neonatal care: the role of standard based participatory assessments.

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    Giorgio Tamburlini

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Gaps in quality of care are seriously affecting maternal and neonatal health globally but reports of successful quality improvement cycles implemented at large scale are scanty. We report the results of a nation-wide program to improve quality of maternal and neonatal hospital care in a lower-middle income country focusing on the role played by standard-based participatory assessments. METHODS: Improvements in the quality of maternal and neonatal care following an action-oriented participatory assessment of 19 areas covering the whole continuum from admission to discharge were measured after an average period of 10 months in four busy referral maternity hospitals in Uzbekistan. Information was collected by a multidisciplinary national team with international supervision through visit to hospital services, examination of medical records, direct observation of cases and interviews with staff and mothers. Scores (range 0 to 3 attributed to over 400 items and combined in average scores for each area were compared with the baseline assessment. RESULTS: Between the first and the second assessment, all four hospitals improved their overall score by an average 0.7 points out of 3 (range 0.4 to 1, i.e. by 22%. The improvements occurred in all main areas of care and were greater in the care of normal labor and delivery (+0.9, monitoring, infection control and mother and baby friendly care (+0.8 the role of the participatory action-oriented approach in determining the observed changes was estimated crucial in 6 out of 19 areas and contributory in other 8. Ongoing implementation of referral system and new classification of neonatal deaths impede the improved process of care to be reflected in current statistics. CONCLUSIONS: Important improvements in the quality of hospital care provided to mothers and newborn babies can be achieved through a standard-based action-oriented and participatory assessment and reassessment process.

  18. Integrating Participatory Design and Health Literacy to Improve Research and Interventions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuhauser, Linda

    2017-01-01

    Health communication is an essential health promotion strategy to convert scientific findings into actionable, empowering information for the public. Health communication interventions have shown positive outcomes, but many efforts have been disappointing. A key weakness is that expert-designed health communication is often overly generic and not adequately aligned with the abilities, preferences and life situations of specific audiences. The emergence of the field of health literacy is providing powerful theoretical guidance and practice strategies. Health literacy, in concert with other determinants of health, has greatly advanced understanding of factors that facilitate or hinder health promotion at individual, organizational and community settings. However, health literacy models are incomplete and interventions have shown only modest success to date. A challenge is to move beyond the current focus on individual comprehension and address deeper factors of motivation, self-efficacy and empowerment, as well as socio-environmental influences, and their impact to improve health outcomes and reduce health disparities. Integrating participatory design theory and methods drawn from social sciences and design sciences can significantly improve health literacy models and interventions. Likewise, researchers and practitioners using participatory design can greatly benefit from incorporating health literacy principles into their efforts. Such interventions at multiple levels are showing positive health outcomes and reduction of health disparities, but this approach is complex and not yet widespread. This chapter focuses on research findings about health literacy and participatory design to improve health promotion, and practical guidance and case examples for researchers, practitioners and policymakers.

  19. Production layout improvement in emergency services: a participatory approach.

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    Zanatta, Mateus; Amaral, Fernando Gonçalves

    2012-01-01

    Volunteer fire department is a service that responds emergency situations in places where there are no military emergency services. These services need to respond quickly, because time is often responsible for the operation success besides work environment and setup time interfere with the prompt response to these calls and care efficiency. The layout design is one factor that interferes with the quick setup. In this case, the spaces arrangement can result in excessive or unnecessary movements; also the equipment provision may hinder the selection and collection of these or even create movement barriers for the workers. This work created a new layout for the emergency assistance service, considering the human factors related to work through the task analysis and workers participation on the alternatives of improvement. The results showed an alternate layout with corridors and minimization of unusable sites, allowing greater flexibility and new possibilities of requirements.

  20. Improving reproductive health in rural China through participatory planning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufman, Joan; Liu, Yunguo; Fang, Jing

    2012-01-01

    China's new health reform initiative aims to provide quality accessible health care to all, including remote rural populations, by 2020. Public health insurance coverage for the rural poor has increased, but rural women have fared worse because of lower status and lack of voice in shaping the services they need. Use of prenatal care, safe delivery and reproductive tract infections (RTIs) services is inadequate and service seeking for health problems remains lower for men. We present findings from a study of gender and health equity in rural China from 2002 to 2008 and offer recommendations from over a decade of applied research on reproductive health in rural China. Three studies, conducted in poor counties between 1994 and 2008, identified problems in access and pilot tested interventions and mechanisms to increase women's participation in health planning. They were done in conjunction with a World Bank programme and the global Gender and Health Equity Network (GHEN). Reproductive health service-seeking improved and the study interventions increased local government commitment to providing such services through new health insurance mechanisms. Findings from the studies were summarised into recommendations on gender and health for inclusion in new health reform efforts.

  1. Improving hazard communication through collaborative participatory workshops: challenges and opportunities experienced at Turrialba volcano, Costa Rica

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    van Manen, S. M.; Avard, G.; Martinez, M.; de Moor, M. J.

    2014-12-01

    Communication is key to disaster risk management before, during and after a hazardous event occurs. In this study we used a participatory design approach to increase disaster preparedness levels around Turrialba volcano (Costa Rica) in collaboration with local communities. We organised five participatory workshops in communities around Turrialba volcano, 2 in February 2014 and a further 3 in May 2014. A total of 101 people attended and participants included the general public, decision makers and relevant government employees. The main finding of the workshops was that people want more information, specifically regarding 1) the activity level at the volcano and 2) how to prepare. In addition, the source of information was identified as an important factor in communication, with credibility and integrity being key. This outcome highlights a communication gap between the communities at risk and the institutions monitoring the volcano, who publish their scientific results monthly. This strong and explicitly expressed desire for more information should be acknowledged and responded to. However, this gives rise to the challenge of how to communicate: how to change the delivery and/or content of the messages already disseminated for greater effectiveness. In our experience, participatory workshops provide a successful mechanism for effective communication. However, critically evaluating the workshops reveals a number of challenges and opportunities, with the former arising from human, cultural and resource factors, specifically the need to develop people's capacity to participate, whereas the latter is predominantly represented by participant empowerment. As disasters are mostly felt at individual, household and community levels, improving communication, not at but with these stakeholders, is an important component of a comprehensive disaster resilience strategy. This work provides an initial insight into the potential value of participatory design approaches for

  2. Participatory System Dynamics Modeling: Increasing Stakeholder Engagement and Precision to Improve Implementation Planning in Systems.

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    Zimmerman, Lindsey; Lounsbury, David W; Rosen, Craig S; Kimerling, Rachel; Trafton, Jodie A; Lindley, Steven E

    2016-11-01

    Implementation planning typically incorporates stakeholder input. Quality improvement efforts provide data-based feedback regarding progress. Participatory system dynamics modeling (PSD) triangulates stakeholder expertise, data and simulation of implementation plans prior to attempting change. Frontline staff in one VA outpatient mental health system used PSD to examine policy and procedural "mechanisms" they believe underlie local capacity to implement evidence-based psychotherapies (EBPs) for PTSD and depression. We piloted the PSD process, simulating implementation plans to improve EBP reach. Findings indicate PSD is a feasible, useful strategy for building stakeholder consensus, and may save time and effort as compared to trial-and-error EBP implementation planning.

  3. The Participatory Construction of Agro-Ecological Knowledge As A Soil Conservation Strategy In The Mountain Region of Rio de Janeiro State (Brazil

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    de Assis Renato Linhares

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Agriculture in the mountain region of Rio de Janeiro State is characterized by intensive soil use and input. Such mountainous environments are vulnerable to climate events; thus, the current article presents a report on methods applied to exchange academic and traditional knowledge. The aim is to expand farmers’ perception about the need of implementing agro-ecological practices, mainly soil management practices, which are important for agricultural sustainability in mountainous environments. The study was conducted in a Nova Friburgo family production unit, in the mountain region of Rio de Janeiro State (Brazil. It consisted of implementing three observation and soil organic-matter management units. The idea was to reduce the incidence of clubroot of crucifers disease caused by Plasmidiophora brassicae. The soil fauna was discussed with local farmers, with emphasis on the association between ecological processes and soil management. The present study improved the discussion with farmers and the need of introducing other innovative conservation practices such as no-tillage system and participatory research based on agro-ecological propositions.

  4. Participatory innovation process for testing new practices for soil fertility management in Chókwè Irrigation Scheme (Mozambique)

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    Sánchez Reparaz, Maite; de Vente, Joris; Famba, Sebastiao; Rougier, Jean-Emmanuel; Ángel Sánchez-Monedero, Miguel; Barberá, Gonzalo G.

    2015-04-01

    Integrated water and nutrient management are key factors to increase productivity and to reduce the yield gap in irrigated systems in Sub-Saharan Africa. These two elements are affected by an ensemble of abiotic, biotic, management and socio-economic factors that need to be taken into account to reduce the yield gap, as well as farmers' perceptions and knowledge. In the framework of the project European Union and African Union cooperative research to increase Food production in irrigated farming systems in Africa (EAU4Food project) we are carrying out a participatory innovation process in Chókwè irrigation scheme (Mozambique) based on stakeholders engagement, to test new practices for soil fertility management that can increase yields reducing costs. Through a method combining interviews with three farmers' associations and other relevant stakeholders and soil sampling from the interviewed farmers' plots with the organization of Communities of Practices, we tried to capture how soil fertility is managed by farmers, the constraints they find as well as their perceptions about soil resources. This information was the basis to design and conduct a participatory innovation process where compost made with rice straw and manure is being tested by a farmers' association. Most important limitations of the method are also evaluated. Our results show that socio-economic characteristics of farmers condition how they manage soil fertility and their perceptions. The difficulties they face to adopt new practices for soil fertility management, mainly related to economic resources limitations, labour availability, knowledge time or farm structure, require a systemic understanding that takes into account abiotic, biotic, management and socio-economic factors and their implication as active stakeholders in all phases of the innovation process.

  5. Improving Maternal and Child Healthcare Programme Using Community-Participatory Interventions in Ebonyi State Nigeria

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    Chigozie Jesse Uneke

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available In Nigeria, the government is implementing the Free Maternal and Child Health Care Programme (FMCHCP. The policy is premised on the notion that financial barriers are one of the most important constraints to equitable access and use of skilled maternal and child healthcare. In Ebonyi State, Southeastern Nigeria the FMCHCP is experiencing implementation challenges including: inadequate human resource for health, inadequate funding, out of stock syndrome, inadequate infrastructure, and poor staff remuneration. Furthermore, there is less emphasis on community involvement in the programme implementation. In this policy brief, we recommend policy options that emphasize the implementation of community-based participatory interventions to strengthen the government’s FMCHCP as follows: Option 1: Training community women on prenatal care, life-saving skills in case of emergency, reproductive health, care of the newborn and family planning. Option 2: Sensitizing the community women towards behavioural change, to understand what quality services that respond to their needs are but also to seek and demand for such. Option 3: Implementation packages that provide technical skills to women of childbearing age as well as mothers’ groups, and traditional birth attendants for better home-based maternal and child healthcare. The effectiveness of this approach has been demonstrated in a number of community-based participatory interventions, building on the idea that if community members take part in decision-making and bring local knowledge, experiences and problems to the fore, they are more likely to own and sustain solutions to improve their communities’ health.

  6. Improving Soil Seed Bank Management.

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    Haring, Steven C; Flessner, Michael L

    2018-05-08

    Problems associated with simplified weed management motivate efforts for diversification. Integrated weed management uses fundamentals of weed biology and applied ecology to provide a framework for diversified weed management programs; the soil seed bank comprises a necessary part of this framework. By targeting seeds, growers can inhibit the propagule pressure on which annual weeds depend for agricultural invasion. Some current management practices affect weed seed banks, such as crop rotation and tillage, but these tools are often used without specific intention to manage weed seeds. Difficulties quantifying the weed seed bank, understanding seed bank phenology, and linking seed banks to emerged weed communities challenge existing soil seed bank management practices. Improved seed bank quantification methods could include DNA profiling of the soil seed bank, mark and recapture, or 3D LIDAR mapping. Successful and sustainable soil seed bank management must constrain functionally diverse and changing weed communities. Harvest weed seed controls represent a step forward, but over-reliance on this singular technique could make it short-lived. Researchers must explore tools inspired by other pest management disciplines, such as gene drives or habitat modification for predatory organisms. Future weed seed bank management will combine multiple complementary practices that enhance diverse agroecosystems. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  7. SOIL Geo-Wiki: A tool for improving soil information

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    Skalský, Rastislav; Balkovic, Juraj; Fritz, Steffen; See, Linda; van der Velde, Marijn; Obersteiner, Michael

    2014-05-01

    Crowdsourcing is increasingly being used as a way of collecting data for scientific research, e.g. species identification, classification of galaxies and unravelling of protein structures. The WorldSoilProfiles.org database at ISRIC is a global collection of soil profiles, which have been 'crowdsourced' from experts. This system, however, requires contributors to have a priori knowledge about soils. Yet many soil parameters can be observed in the field without specific knowledge or equipment such as stone content, soil depth or color. By crowdsourcing this information over thousands of locations, the uncertainty in current soil datasets could be radically reduced, particularly in areas currently without information or where multiple interpretations are possible from different existing soil maps. Improved information on soils could benefit many research fields and applications. Better soil data could enhance assessments of soil ecosystem services (e.g. soil carbon storage) and facilitate improved process-based ecosystem modeling from local to global scales. Geo-Wiki is a crowdsourcing tool that was developed at IIASA for land cover validation using satellite imagery. Several branches are now available focused on specific aspects of land cover validation, e.g. validating cropland extent or urbanized areas. Geo-Wiki Pictures is a smart phone application for collecting land cover related information on the ground. The extension of Geo-Wiki to a mobile environment provides a tool for experts in land cover validation but is also a way of reaching the general public in the validation of land cover. Here we propose a Soil Geo-Wiki tool that builds on the existing functionality of the Geo-Wiki application, which will be largely designed for the collection and sharing of soil information. Two distinct applications are envisaged: an expert-oriented application mainly for scientific purposes, which will use soil science related language (e.g. WRB or any other global reference

  8. Using Community-Based Participatory Research to Explore Backyard Gardening Practices and Soil Lead Concentrations in Urban Neighborhoods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Sheri; Cardona, Dalila; Davis, Jeremy; Gramling, Benjamin; Hamilton, Chelsea; Hoffmann, Ray; Ruis, Sabrina; Soldat, Doug; Ventura, Steve; Yan, Ke

    2016-01-01

    Lead exposure is a serious health threat for children. Soil is an important exposure pathway, primarily through ingestion and inhalation. Urban agriculture is increasing. Potential environmental health risks associated with residential gardening may not be well known to community residents. A community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach was implemented to explore the relationship between urban residential vegetable gardening and lead exposure in children. The primary objectives were to characterize local backyard vegetable gardening practices, measure residential and commercial soil lead concentrations and spatial distributions, and identify priorities for individual and collective action. Participants were recruited in two stages. In phase 1, adult gardeners participated in structured interviews. In phase 2, a multistage representative sampling approach was implemented to recruit adult gardeners for interviews and soil testing. Twenty adults participated in gardening practice interviews. Adults perceive many benefits from backyard gardening and initially expressed few concerns about lead exposure risk. Results indicate that children are actively involved in backyard gardening. Total soil lead concentrations from 17 residential properties ranged from 7 to 3,234 mg kg-1(median, 187; mean, 432). Commercial soils had lead concentrations that ranged from 6 to 13 mg kg(-1) (median, 6.5; mean, 7.6). Nonparametric Mann-Whitney comparisons indicated a significant difference in lead concentration between commercial soil and residential soil (p<0.0001). Advocacy for resources needed to eliminate dangerous levels of lead from the environment, especially in communities where divestment has occurred, is enhanced through CBPR. Increasing access to soil testing is an important action step.

  9. Human ergology that promotes participatory approach to improving safety, health and working conditions at grassroots workplaces: achievements and actions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawakami, Tsuyoshi

    2011-12-01

    Participatory approaches are increasingly applied to improve safety, health and working conditions of grassroots workplaces in Asia. The core concepts and methods in human ergology research such as promoting real work life studies, relying on positive efforts of local people (daily life-technology), promoting active participation of local people to identify practical solutions, and learning from local human networks to reach grassroots workplaces, have provided useful viewpoints to devise such participatory training programmes. This study was aimed to study and analyze how human ergology approaches were applied in the actual development and application of three typical participatory training programmes: WISH (Work Improvement for Safe Home) with home workers in Cambodia, WISCON (Work Improvement in Small Construction Sites) with construction workers in Thailand, and WARM (Work Adjustment for Recycling and Managing Waste) with waste collectors in Fiji. The results revealed that all the three programmes, in the course of their developments, commonly applied direct observation methods of the work of target workers before devising the training programmes, learned from existing local good examples and efforts, and emphasized local human networks for cooperation. These methods and approaches were repeatedly applied in grassroots workplaces by taking advantage of their the sustainability and impacts. It was concluded that human ergology approaches largely contributed to the developments and expansion of participatory training programmes and could continue to support the self-help initiatives of local people for promoting human-centred work.

  10. Engaging stakeholders: lessons from the use of participatory tools for improving maternal and child care health services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ekirapa-Kiracho, Elizabeth; Ghosh, Upasona; Brahmachari, Rittika; Paina, Ligia

    2017-12-28

    Effective stakeholder engagement in research and implementation is important for improving the development and implementation of policies and programmes. A varied number of tools have been employed for stakeholder engagement. In this paper, we discuss two participatory methods for engaging with stakeholders - participatory social network analysis (PSNA) and participatory impact pathways analysis (PIPA). Based on our experience, we derive lessons about when and how to apply these tools. This paper was informed by a review of project reports and documents in addition to reflection meetings with the researchers who applied the tools. These reports were synthesised and used to make thick descriptions of the applications of the methods while highlighting key lessons. PSNA and PIPA both allowed a deep understanding of how the system actors are interconnected and how they influence maternal health and maternal healthcare services. The findings from the PSNA provided guidance on how stakeholders of a health system are interconnected and how they can stimulate more positive interaction between the stakeholders by exposing existing gaps. The PIPA meeting enabled the participants to envision how they could expand their networks and resources by mentally thinking about the contributions that they could make to the project. The processes that were considered critical for successful application of the tools and achievement of outcomes included training of facilitators, language used during the facilitation, the number of times the tool is applied, length of the tools, pretesting of the tools, and use of quantitative and qualitative methods. Whereas both tools allowed the identification of stakeholders and provided a deeper understanding of the type of networks and dynamics within the network, PIPA had a higher potential for promoting collaboration between stakeholders, likely due to allowing interaction between them. Additionally, it was implemented within a participatory action

  11. Applying community-based participatory research to better understand and improve kinship care practices

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chukwudozie, Oge; Feinstein, Clare; Jensen, Celina

    2015-01-01

    While the principles behind community-based participatory research are firmly established, the process of taking community-based participatory research with children and youth to scale and integrating it into the programming of non-governmental organizations has been scarcely documented. This art...... and highlights how the research process enabled action and advocacy initiatives at different levels-leading to an increase in support and policy attention for children living in kinship care....

  12. Using Participatory Approach to Improve Availability of Spatial Data for Local Government

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kliment, T.; Cetl, V.; Tomič, H.; Lisiak, J.; Kliment, M.

    2016-09-01

    Nowadays, the availability of authoritative geospatial features of various data themes is becoming wider on global, regional and national levels. The reason is existence of legislative frameworks for public sector information and related spatial data infrastructure implementations, emergence of support for initiatives as open data, big data ensuring that online geospatial information are made available to digital single market, entrepreneurs and public bodies on both national and local level. However, the availability of authoritative reference spatial data linking the geographic representation of the properties and their owners are still missing in an appropriate quantity and quality level, even though this data represent fundamental input for local governments regarding the register of buildings used for property tax calculations, identification of illegal buildings, etc. We propose a methodology to improve this situation by applying the principles of participatory GIS and VGI used to collect observations, update authoritative datasets and verify the newly developed datasets of areas of buildings used to calculate property tax rates issued to their owners. The case study was performed within the district of the City of Požega in eastern Croatia in the summer 2015 and resulted in a total number of 16072 updated and newly identified objects made available online for quality verification by citizens using open source geospatial technologies.

  13. Participatory appraisal for farm-level soil and water conservation planning in West Usambara highlands, Tanzania

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tenge, A.J.M.

    2005-01-01

    Soil and water conservation (SWC) measures are needed to control soil erosion and sustain agricultural production on the steep slopes of Usambara Mountains. The need for SWC has resulted in the development and promotion of several SWC measures by both governmental and non-governmental programmes.

  14. Effect on mental health of a participatory intervention to improve psychosocial work environment: a cluster randomized controlled trial among nurses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uchiyama, Ayako; Odagiri, Yuko; Ohya, Yumiko; Takamiya, Tomoko; Inoue, Shigeru; Shimomitsu, Teruichi

    2013-01-01

    Improvement of psychosocial work environment has proved to be valuable for workers' mental health. However, limited evidence is available for the effectiveness of participatory interventions. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect on mental health among nurses of a participatory intervention to improve the psychosocial work environment. A cluster randomized controlled trial was conducted in hospital settings. A total of 434 nurses in 24 units were randomly allocated to 11 intervention units (n=183) and 13 control units (n=218). A participatory program was provided to the intervention units for 6 months. Depressive symptoms as mental health status and psychosocial work environment, assessed by the Job Content Questionnaire, the Effort-Reward Imbalance Questionnaire, and the Quality Work Competence questionnaire, were measured before and immediately after the 6-month intervention by a self-administered questionnaire. No significant intervention effect was observed for mental health status. However, significant intervention effects were observed in psychosocial work environment aspects, such as Coworker Support (pwork environment, but not mental health, among Japanese nurses.

  15. Participatory Communication

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tufte, Thomas

    This user guide on participatory communication aims to answer the following questions: What do we mean when we say participatory communication? What are the practical implications of working with participatory communication strategies in development and social change processes? What practical exp......, tools, and experiences on how to implement participatory communications strategies. It is targeted toward government officials, World Bank staff, develompent workers in the field, and civil society....

  16. Leveraging health information exchange to improve population health reporting processes: lessons in using a collaborative-participatory design process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Revere, Debra; Dixon, Brian E; Hills, Rebecca; Williams, Jennifer L; Grannis, Shaun J

    2014-01-01

    Surveillance, or the systematic monitoring of disease within a population, is a cornerstone function of public health. Despite significant investment in information technologies (IT) to improve the public's health, health care providers continue to rely on manual, spontaneous reporting processes that can result in incomplete and delayed surveillance activities. Participatory design principles advocate including real users and stakeholders when designing an information system to ensure high ecological validity of the product, incorporate relevance and context into the design, reduce misconceptions designers can make due to insufficient domain expertise, and ultimately reduce barriers to adoption of the system. This paper focuses on the collaborative and informal participatory design process used to develop enhanced, IT-enabled reporting processes that leverage available electronic health records in a health information exchange to prepopulate notifiable-conditions report forms used by public health authorities. Over nine months, public health stakeholders, technical staff, and informatics researchers were engaged in a multiphase participatory design process that included public health stakeholder focus groups, investigator-engineering team meetings, public health survey and census regarding high-priority data elements, and codesign of exploratory prototypes and final form mock-ups. A number of state-mandated report fields that are not highly used or desirable for disease investigation were eliminated, which allowed engineers to repurpose form space for desired and high-priority data elements and improve the usability of the forms. Our participatory design process ensured that IT development was driven by end user expertise and needs, resulting in significant improvements to the layout and functionality of the reporting forms. In addition to informing report form development, engaging with public health end users and stakeholders through the participatory design

  17. Community-Based Participatory Research to Improve Preconception Health among Northern Plains American Indian Adolescent Women

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richards, Jennifer; Mousseau, Alicia

    2012-01-01

    Background: Sacred Beginnings is a community-based participatory research project that examines the effectiveness of a culturally appropriate preconception health educational intervention developed by tribal community members and elders. The primary goal is to increase knowledge of preconception health and its benefits among adolescent females and…

  18. "Who Is Helsinki" Sex Workers Advise Improving Communication for Good Participatory Practice in Clinical Trials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ditmore, Melissa Hope; Allman, Dan

    2011-01-01

    After premature closures in 2004 of biomedical human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevention trials involving sex workers in Africa and Asia, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and Global Advocacy for HIV Prevention (AVAC) undertook consultations to establish better participatory guidelines for such trials in order to address…

  19. Agroecology and sustainable food systems: Participatory research to improve food security among HIV-affected households in northern Malawi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyantakyi-Frimpong, Hanson; Mambulu, Faith Nankasa; Bezner Kerr, Rachel; Luginaah, Isaac; Lupafya, Esther

    2016-09-01

    This article shares results from a long-term participatory agroecological research project in northern Malawi. Drawing upon a political ecology of health conceptual framework, the paper explores whether and how participatory agroecological farming can improve food security and nutrition among HIV-affected households. In-depth interviews were conducted with 27 farmers in HIV-affected households in the area near Ekwendeni Trading Centre in northern Malawi. The results show that participatory agroecological farming has a strong potential to meet the food, dietary, labour and income needs of HIV-affected households, whilst helping them to manage natural resources sustainably. As well, the findings reveal that place-based politics, especially gendered power imbalances, are imperative for understanding the human impacts of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Overall, the study adds valuable insights into the literature on the human-environment dimensions of health. It demonstrates that the onset of disease can radically transform the social relations governing access to and control over resources (e.g., land, labour, and capital), and that these altered social relations in turn affect sustainable disease management. The conclusion highlights how the promotion of sustainable agroecology could help to partly address the socio-ecological challenges associated with HIV/AIDS. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Feasibility of a novel participatory multi-sector continuous improvement approach to enhance food security in remote Indigenous Australian communities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Brimblecombe

    2017-12-01

    Conclusion: A multi-sector participatory approach seeking continuous improvement engaged committed Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal stakeholders and was shown to have potential to shift community diet. Provision of clear mechanisms to link this approach with higher level policy and decision-making structures, clarity of roles and responsibilities, and processes to prioritise and communicate actions across sectors should further strengthen capacity for food security improvement. Integrating this approach enabling local decision-making into community governance structures with adequate resourcing is an imperative.

  1. A community based participatory approach to improving health in a Hispanic population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Urquieta de Hernandez Brisa

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Charlotte-Mecklenburg region has one of the fastest growing Hispanic communities in the country. This population has experienced disparities in health outcomes and diminished ability to access healthcare services. This city is home to an established practice-based research network (PBRN that includes community representatives, health services researchers, and primary care providers. The aims of this project are: to use key principles of community-based participatory research (CBPR within a practice-based research network (PBRN to identify a single disease or condition that negatively affects the Charlotte Hispanic community; to develop a community-based intervention that positively impacts the chosen condition and improves overall community health; and to disseminate findings to all stakeholders. Methods/design This project is designed as CBPR. The CBPR process creates new social networks and connections between participants that can potentially alter patterns of healthcare utilization and other health-related behaviors. The first step is the development of equitable partnerships between community representatives, providers, and researchers. This process is central to the CBPR process and will occur at three levels -- community members trained as researchers and outreach workers, a community advisory board (CAB, and a community forum. Qualitative data on health issues facing the community -- and possible solutions -- will be collected at all three levels through focus groups, key informant interviews and surveys. The CAB will meet monthly to guide the project and oversee data collection, data analysis, participant recruitment, implementation of the community forum, and intervention deployment. The selection of the health condition and framework for the intervention will occur at the level of a community-wide forum. Outcomes of the study will be measured using indicators developed by the participants as well as geospatial

  2. Seeing beyond fertiliser trees : a case study of a community based participatory approach to agroforestry research and development in western Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kiptot, E.

    2007-01-01

    Key words: village committee approach, agroforestry, improved tree fallows, biomass transfer, realist evaluation, soil fertility, adoption, dissemination. The thesis explores and describes various processes that take place in the implementation of a community based participatory initiative

  3. Improvement of Expansive Soils Using Chemical Stabilizers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikizler, S. B.; Senol, A.; Khosrowshahi, S. K.; Hatipoğlu, M.

    2014-12-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate the effect of two chemical stabilizers on the swelling potential of expansive soil. A high plasticity sodium bentonite was used as the expansive soil. The additive materials including fly ash (FA) and lime (L) were evaluated as potential stabilizers to decrease the swelling pressure of bentonite. Depending on the type of additive materials, they were blended with bentonite in different percentages to assess the optimum state and approch the maximum swell pressure reduction. According to the results of swell pressure test, both fly ash and lime reduce the swelling potential of bentonite but the maximum improvement occurs using bentonite-lime mixture while the swelling pressure reduction approaches to 49%. The results reveal a significant reduction of swelling potential of expansive soil using chemical stabilizers. Keywords: Expansive soil; swell pressure; chemical stabilization; fly ash; lime

  4. Transforming a conservative clinical setting: ICU nurses' strategies to improve care for patients' relatives through a participatory action research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaforteza, Concha; Gastaldo, Denise; Moreno, Cristina; Bover, Andreu; Miró, Rosa; Miró, Margalida

    2015-12-01

    This study focuses on change strategies generated through a dialogical-reflexive-participatory process designed to improve the care of families of critically ill patients in an intensive care unit (ICU) using a participatory action research in a tertiary hospital in the Balearic Islands (Spain). Eleven professionals (representatives) participated in 11 discussion groups and five in-depth interviews. They represented the opinions of 49 colleagues (participants). Four main change strategies were created: (i) Institutionally supported practices were confronted to make a shift from professional-centered work to a more inclusive, patient-centered approach; (ii) traditional power relations were challenged to decrease the hierarchical power differences between physicians and nurses; (iii) consensus was built about the need to move from an individual to a collective position in relation to change; and (iv) consensus was built about the need to develop a critical attitude toward the conservative nature of the unit. The strategies proposed were both transgressive and conservative; however, when compared with the initial situation, they enhanced the care offered to patients' relatives and patient safety. Transforming conservative settings requires capacity to negotiate positions and potential outcomes. However, when individual critical capacities are articulated with a new approach to micropolitics, transformative proposals can be implemented and sustained. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. Farmers Participatory Research in the Evaluation of Maize Crop Residues for Improved Dairy Cattle Production in Eastern Kenya

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kiruiro, E.M.; Kariuki, I.W.; Kang'ara, J.; Ouma, O.

    1999-01-01

    Informal and formal surveys, and participatory rural appraisal conducted within the coffee land-use system of Embu District in Eastern Kenya identified feed shortage as a major constraint to increased dairy production on small holder farms. To address this constraint, a two-year (1996-1998) on-farm research project involving 20 farms in Manyatta division, Embu District was initiated with broad objectives of developing components technologies that would use maize crop residues. This was due to the recognition of the fact that the greatest potential for improving field availability would be in the exploitation of crop residues, especially those derived from maize, the main staple crop in the region. Based on these reality appropriate technologies that would offer viable offers for the use of crop residues were identified and discussed during workshops and meetings with farmers. Component technologies considered included drying of maize leaves after defoliation and post-harvest storage methods for dry maize stover. this paper discussed the results of the participatory research in context of farmers' involvement in the technology development, testing, evaluation and promotion. The study demonstrated that involving farmers in all stages of the research process, enhanced their interest and participation in the testing and subsequent adoption of appropriate technologies

  6. Improvements to SOIL: An Eulerian hydrodynamics code

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Davis, C.G.

    1988-04-01

    Possible improvements to SOIL, an Eulerian hydrodynamics code that can do coupled radiation diffusion and strength of materials, are presented in this report. Our research is based on the inspection of other Eulerian codes and theoretical reports on hydrodynamics. Several conclusions from the present study suggest that some improvements are in order, such as second-order advection, adaptive meshes, and speedup of the code by vectorization and/or multitasking. 29 refs., 2 figs

  7. Participatory approach to identify interventions to improve the health, safety, and work productivity of smallholder women vegetable farmers in the Gambia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanderwal, Londa; Rautiainen, Risto; Ramirez, Marizen; Kuye, Rex; Peek-Asa, Corinne; Cook, Thomas; Culp, Kennith; Donham, Kelley

    2011-03-01

    This paper describes the qualitative, community-based participatory approach used to identify culturally-acceptable and sustainable interventions to improve the occupational health, safety, and productivity of smallholder women vegetable farmers in The Gambia (West Africa). This approach was used to conduct: 1) analysis of the tasks and methods traditionally used in vegetable production, and 2) selection of interventions. The most arduous garden tasks that were amenable to interventions were identified, and the interventions were selected through a participatory process for further evaluation. Factors contributing to the successful implementation of the participatory approach used in this study included the following: 1) ensuring that cultural norms were respected and observed; 2) working closely with the existing garden leadership structure; and 3) research team members working with the subjects for an extended period of time to gain first-hand understanding of the selected tasks and to build credibility with the subjects.

  8. Participatory Research Into Inclusive Practice: Improving Services for People With Long Term Neurological Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tina Cook

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available People with long-term conditions are intensive users of health services as well as being long term users of social care and community services. In the UK, the Department of Health has suggested that the development of a more inclusive approach to services could furnish benefits to people with long-term conditions and financial savings for service providers. Researchers with a varied set of expertise and experience (users of neuro-rehabilitation services, staff working in services, people working with third sector agencies and university academics adopted a participatory research approach to work together to explore what inclusion might look and feel like for people who are long term users of health services. The element of critique and mutual challenge, developed within the research process, disturbed current presentations of inclusion and inclusive practice. It revealed that the more usually expected components of inclusion (trust, respect and shared responsibility whilst necessary for inclusive practice, are not necessarily sufficient. Inclusion is revealed as a complex and challenging process that requires the active construction of a critical communicative space for dialectical and democratic learning for service development.

  9. Evaluating Community-Based Participatory Research to Improve Community-Partnered Science and Community Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hicks, Sarah; Duran, Bonnie; Wallerstein, Nina; Avila, Magdalena; Belone, Lorenda; Lucero, Julie; Magarati, Maya; Mainer, Elana; Martin, Diane; Muhammad, Michael; Oetzel, John; Pearson, Cynthia; Sahota, Puneet; Simonds, Vanessa; Sussman, Andrew; Tafoya, Greg; Hat, Emily White

    2013-01-01

    Background Since 2007, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) Policy Research Center (PRC) has partnered with the Universities of New Mexico and Washington to study the science of community-based participatory research (CBPR). Our goal is to identify facilitators and barriers to effective community–academic partnerships in American Indian and other communities, which face health disparities. Objectives We have described herein the scientific design of our National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded study (2009–2013) and lessons learned by having a strong community partner leading the research efforts. Methods The research team is implementing a mixed-methods study involving a survey of principal investigators (PIs) and partners across the nation and in-depth case studies of CBPR projects. Results We present preliminary findings on methods and measures for community-engaged research and eight lessons learned thus far regarding partnership evaluation, advisory councils, historical trust, research capacity development of community partner, advocacy, honoring each other, messaging, and funding. Conclusions Study methodologies and lessons learned can help community–academic research partnerships translate research in communities. PMID:22982842

  10. Unlocking community capabilities for improving maternal and newborn health: participatory action research to improve birth preparedness, health facility access, and newborn care in rural Uganda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Ekirapa-Kiracho

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Community capacities and resources must be harnessed to complement supply side initiatives addressing high maternal and neonatal mortality rates in Uganda. This paper reflects on gains, challenges and lessons learnt from working with communities to improve maternal and newborn health in rural Uganda. Methods A participatory action research project was supported from 2012 to 2015 in three eastern districts. This project involved working with households, saving groups, sub county and district leaders, transporters and village health teams in diagnosing causes of maternal and neonatal mortality and morbidity, developing action plans to address these issues, taking action and learning from action in a cyclical manner. This paper draws from project experience and documentation, as well as thematic analysis of 20 interviews with community and district stakeholders and 12 focus group discussions with women who had recently delivered and men whose wives had recently delivered. Results Women and men reported increased awareness about birth preparedness, improved newborn care practices and more male involvement in maternal and newborn health. However, additional direct communication strategies were required to reach more men beyond the minority who attended community dialogues and home visits. Saving groups and other saving modalities were strengthened, with money saved used to meet transport costs, purchase other items needed for birth and other routine household needs. However saving groups required significant support to improve income generation, management and trust among members. Linkages between savings groups and transport providers improved women’s access to health facilities at reduced cost. Although village health teams were a key resource for providing information, their efforts were constrained by low levels of education, inadequate financial compensation and transportation challenges. Ensuring that the village health

  11. Biochar application does not improve the soil hydrological function of a sandy soil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jeffery, S.; Meinders, M.B.C.; Stoof, C.R.; Bezemer, T.M.; Van de Voorde, T.F.J.; Mommer, Liesje; Van Groenigen, J.W.

    2015-01-01

    Biochar application to soil is currently being widely posited as a means to improve soil quality and thereby increase crop yield. Next to beneficial effects on soil nutrient availability and retention, biochar is assumed to improve soil water retention. However, evidence for such an effect in the

  12. Improving community health through marketing exchanges: A participatory action research study on water, sanitation, and hygiene in three Melanesian countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrington, D J; Sridharan, S; Saunders, S G; Souter, R T; Bartram, J; Shields, K F; Meo, S; Kearton, A; Hughes, R K

    2016-12-01

    Diseases related to poor water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH) are major causes of mortality and morbidity. While pursuing marketing approaches to WaSH to improve health outcomes is often narrowly associated with monetary exchange, marketing theory recognises four broad marketing exchange archetypes: market-based, non-market-based, command-based and culturally determined. This diversity reflects the need for parameters broader than monetary exchange when improving WaSH. This study applied a participatory action research process to investigate how impoverished communities in Melanesian urban and peri-urban informal settlements attempt to meet their WaSH needs through marketing exchange. Exchanges of all four archetypes were present, often in combination. Motivations for participating in the marketing exchanges were based on social relationships alongside WaSH needs, health aspirations and financial circumstances. By leveraging these motivations and pre-existing, self-determined marketing exchanges, WaSH practitioners may be able to foster WaSH marketing exchanges consistent with local context and capabilities, in turn improving community physical, mental and social health. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Building motivation to participate in a quality improvement collaborative in NHS hospital trusts in Southeast England: a qualitative participatory evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lalani, Mirza; Hall, Kate; Skrypak, Mirek; Laing, Chris; Welch, John; Toohey, Peter; Seaholme, Sarah; Weijburg, Thomas; Eyre, Laura; Marshall, Martin

    2018-04-07

    This study explores the barriers and facilitators that impact on the motivation of practitioners to participate in a quality improvement collaborative. A qualitative and formative evaluation using a participatory approach, the researcher-in-residence model which embraces the concept of 'coproducing' knowledge between researchers and practitioners using a range of research methods such as participant observation, interviews and documentary analysis. The design, creation and application of newly generated evidence are facilitated by the researcher through negotiation and compromise with team members. Senior and middle managers, doctors and nurses. Two hospitals in Southeast England participating in a Patient Safety Improvement Collaborative and the facilitator (host) of the collaborative, based in Central London. The evaluation has revealed facilitators and barriers to motivation categorised under two main themes: (1) inherent motivation and (2) factors that influence motivation, interorganisational and intraorganisational features as well as external factors. Facilitators included collaborative 'champions,' individuals who drove the quality improvement agenda at a local level, raising awareness and inspiring colleagues. The collaborative itself acted as a facilitator, promoting shared learning as well as building motivation for participation. A key barrier was the lack of board engagement in the participating National Health Service organisations which may have affected motivation among front-line staff. Collaboratives maybe an important way of engaging practitioners in quality improvement initiatives. This study highlights that despite a challenging healthcare environment in the UK, there remains motivation among individuals to participate in quality improvement programmes as they recognise that improvement approaches may facilitate positive change in local clinical processes and systems. Collaboratives can harness this individual motivation to facilitate spread

  14. Participatory Innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Buur, Jacob; Matthews, Ben

    In this paper we discuss the potential for Participatory Design (PD) to make a fundamental contribution to the business-oriented field of user-driven innovation, taking note of where we find PD can best benefit from interaction with this other field. We examine some of the challenges that must...... be addressed if PD is to contribute to innovation processes in companies. We conclude by presenting a research agenda comprising of six promising topics to shape a new discipline of Participatory Innovation....

  15. A randomized controlled trial of the effect of participatory ergonomic low back pain training on workplace improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kajiki, Shigeyuki; Izumi, Hiroyuki; Hayashida, Kenshi; Kusumoto, Akira; Nagata, Tomohisa; Mori, Koji

    2017-01-01

    Objectives: This study aimed to determine the effects of participatory workplace improvement (PWI) -based provision of ergonomic training and ergonomic action checklists (ACLs) to on-site managers on workplace improvement activities for low back pain (LBP). Methods: A randomized controlled trial (RCT) was conducted at a manufacturing company in Japan. Teams entered in the study were randomly assigned to a control and an intervention group. A total of three interventional training sessions on methods of ergonomics were provided to on-site managers in the intervention group, with 1-month intervals between sessions. Ergonomic ACLs were provided at the same time. After completion of the training sessions, each team then provided a report of improvements each month for the next 10 months. Two people in charge of safety and health chose two major objectives of the implemented activities from the five categories. The reported number of improvements was analyzed using a Poisson regression model. Results: In the intervention group, although the incident rate ratio (IRR) of PWIs in countermeasures for the LBP category was significantly elevated after the training sessions, the IRR of improvements decreased over time during the 10-month follow-up period. No significant difference was observed in the IRR of total PWIs in either the control or intervention group. Conclusions: PWI-based provision of ergonomic training sessions and ergonomics ACLs to on-site managers was shown to be effective for workplace improvement activities targeted at LBP. However, because the effects decrease over time, efforts should be made to maintain the effects through regular interventions. PMID:28320978

  16. A randomized controlled trial of the effect of participatory ergonomic low back pain training on workplace improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kajiki, Shigeyuki; Izumi, Hiroyuki; Hayashida, Kenshi; Kusumoto, Akira; Nagata, Tomohisa; Mori, Koji

    2017-05-25

    This study aimed to determine the effects of participatory workplace improvement (PWI) -based provision of ergonomic training and ergonomic action checklists (ACLs) to on-site managers on workplace improvement activities for low back pain (LBP). A randomized controlled trial (RCT) was conducted at a manufacturing company in Japan. Teams entered in the study were randomly assigned to a control and an intervention group. A total of three interventional training sessions on methods of ergonomics were provided to on-site managers in the intervention group, with 1-month intervals between sessions. Ergonomic ACLs were provided at the same time. After completion of the training sessions, each team then provided a report of improvements each month for the next 10 months. Two people in charge of safety and health chose two major objectives of the implemented activities from the five categories. The reported number of improvements was analyzed using a Poisson regression model. In the intervention group, although the incident rate ratio (IRR) of PWIs in countermeasures for the LBP category was significantly elevated after the training sessions, the IRR of improvements decreased over time during the 10-month follow-up period. No significant difference was observed in the IRR of total PWIs in either the control or intervention group. PWI-based provision of ergonomic training sessions and ergonomics ACLs to on-site managers was shown to be effective for workplace improvement activities targeted at LBP. However, because the effects decrease over time, efforts should be made to maintain the effects through regular interventions.

  17. Participatory hierarchies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristiansen, Marianne; Bloch-Poulsen, Jørgen

    2016-01-01

    projects works in the interface between communication and organisation. Third, the methodological purpose is to show that handling of these participatory hierarchies ought to become a goal in OAR projects to be included along with producing practical and theoretical results. The article argues...

  18. Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Robertson, Toni; Simonsen, Jesper

    2012-01-01

    focus of later chapters. The target audience is identified, and the structure of the book explained. A short description of each chapter highlights its particular contributions as well as the associated challenges facing designers and researchers engaged in participatory approaches. The chapter...

  19. Using the experience-sampling method to examine the psychological mechanisms by which participatory art improves wellbeing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holt, Nicola J

    2018-01-01

    To measure the immediate impact of art-making in everyday life on diverse indices of wellbeing ('in the moment' and longer term) in order to improve understanding of the psychological mechanisms by which art may improve mental health. Using the experience-sampling method, 41 artists were prompted (with a 'beep' on a handheld computer) at random intervals (10 times a day, for one week) to answer a short questionnaire. The questionnaire tracked art-making and enquired about mood, cognition and state of consciousness. This resulted in 2,495 sampled experiences, with a high response rate in which 89% of questionnaires were completed. Multi-level modelling was used to evaluate the impact of art-making on experience, with 2,495 'experiences' (experiential-level) nested within 41 participants (person-level). Recent art-making was significantly associated with experiential shifts: improvement in hedonic tone, vivid internal imagery and the flow state. Furthermore, the frequency of art-making across the week was associated with person-level measures of wellbeing: eudemonic happiness and self-regulation. Cross-level interactions, between experiential and person-level variables, suggested that hedonic tone improved more for those scoring low on eudemonic happiness, and further that, those high in eudemonic happiness were more likely to experience phenomenological features of the flow state and to experience inner dialogue while art-making. Art-making has both immediate and long-term associations with wellbeing. At the experiential level, art-making affects multiple dimensions of conscious experience: affective, cognitive and state factors. This suggests that there are multiple routes to wellbeing (improving hedonic tone, making meaning through inner dialogue and experiencing the flow state). Recommendations are made to consider these factors when both developing and evaluating public health interventions that involve participatory art.

  20. Feasibility of a novel participatory multi-sector continuous improvement approach to enhance food security in remote Indigenous Australian communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brimblecombe, J; Bailie, R; van den Boogaard, C; Wood, B; Liberato, S C; Ferguson, M; Coveney, J; Jaenke, R; Ritchie, J

    2017-12-01

    Food insecurity underlies and compounds many of the development issues faced by remote Indigenous communities in Australia. Multi-sector approaches offer promise to improve food security. We assessed the feasibility of a novel multi-sector approach to enhance community food security in remote Indigenous Australia. A longitudinal comparative multi-site case study, the Good Food Systems Good Food for All Project, was conducted (2009-2013) with four Aboriginal communities. Continuous improvement meetings were held in each community. Data from project documents and store sales were used to assess feasibility according to engagement, uptake and sustainability of action, and impact on community diet, as well as identifying conditions facilitating or hindering these. Engagement was established where: the community perceived a need for the approach; where trust was developed between the community and facilitators; where there was community stability; and where flexibility was applied in the timing of meetings. The approach enabled stakeholders in each community to collectively appraise the community food system and plan action. Actions that could be directly implemented within available resources resulted from developing collaborative capacity. Actions requiring advocacy, multi-sectoral involvement, commitment or further resources were less frequently used. Positive shifts in community diet were associated with key areas where actions were implemented. A multi-sector participatory approach seeking continuous improvement engaged committed Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal stakeholders and was shown to have potential to shift community diet. Provision of clear mechanisms to link this approach with higher level policy and decision-making structures, clarity of roles and responsibilities, and processes to prioritise and communicate actions across sectors should further strengthen capacity for food security improvement. Integrating this approach enabling local decision-making into

  1. Electrodialytic Soil Remediation. Improved conditions and acceleration of the process by addition of desorbing agents to the soil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ottosen, Lisbeth M.; Hansen, Henrik; Hansen, Lene

    1998-01-01

    The principel of electrodialytic soil remediation was improved when ammonia was added to a calcareous copper polluted soil......The principel of electrodialytic soil remediation was improved when ammonia was added to a calcareous copper polluted soil...

  2. Recurrent Selection and Participatory Plant Breeding for Improvement of Two Organic Open-Pollinated Sweet Corn (Zea mays L. Populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrienne C. Shelton

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Organic growers face unique challenges when raising sweet corn, and benefit from varieties that maintain high eating quality, germinate consistently, deter insect pests, and resist diseases. Genotype by environment rank changes can occur in the performance of cultivars grown on conventional and organic farms, yet few varieties have been bred specifically for organic systems. The objective of this experiment was to evaluate the changes made to open-pollinated sweet corn populations using recurrent selection and a participatory plant breeding (PPB methodology. From 2008 to 2011, four cycles of two open-pollinated (OP sweet corn populations were selected on a certified organic farm in Minnesota using a modified ear-to-row recurrent selection scheme. Selections were made in collaboration with an organic farmer, with selection criteria based on traits identified by the farmer. In 2012 and 2013, the population cycles were evaluated in a randomized complete block design in two certified organic locations in Wisconsin, with multiple replications in each environment. Significant linear trends were found among cycles of selection for quantitative and qualitative traits, suggesting the changes were due to recurrent selection and PPB methodology for these populations. However, further improvement is necessary to satisfy the requirements for a useful cultivar for organic growers.

  3. utilisation of rice husk ash for improvement of deficient soils

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    1, 2 DEPARTMENT OF CIVIL ENGINEERING,FEDERAL UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY,MINNA,NIGER STATE.NIGERIA ... industrial wastes in soil improvement is rapidly increasing ..... barriers, permeability characteristics of the treated soil,.

  4. Quality improvement and person-centredness: a participatory mixed methods study to develop the 'always event' concept for primary care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowie, Paul; McNab, Duncan; Ferguson, Julie; de Wet, Carl; Smith, Gregor; MacLeod, Marion; McKay, John; White, Craig

    2015-04-28

    (1) To ascertain from patients what really matters to them on a personal level of such high importance that it should 'always happen' when they interact with healthcare professionals and staff groups. (2) To critically review existing criteria for selecting 'always events' (AEs) and generate a candidate list of AE examples based on the patient feedback data. Mixed methods study informed by participatory design principles. Convenience samples of patients with a long-term clinical condition in Scottish general practices. 195 patients from 13 general practices were interviewed (n=65) or completed questionnaires (n=130). 4 themes of high importance to patients were identified from which examples of potential 'AEs' (n=8) were generated: (1) emotional support, respect and kindness (eg, "I want all practice team members to show genuine concern for me at all times"); (2) clinical care management (eg, "I want the correct treatment for my problem"); (3) communication and information (eg, "I want the clinician who sees me to know my medical history") and (4) access to, and continuity of, healthcare (eg, "I want to arrange appointments around my family and work commitments"). Each 'AE' was linked to a system process or professional behaviour that could be measured to facilitate improvements in the quality of patient care. This study is the first known attempt to develop the AE concept as a person-centred approach to quality improvement in primary care. Practice managers were able to collect data from patients on what they 'always want' in terms of expectations related to care quality from which a list of AE examples was generated that could potentially be used as patient-driven quality improvement (QI) measures. There is strong implementation potential in the Scottish health service. However, further evaluation of the utility of the method is also necessary. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please

  5. Participatory science and innovation for improved sanitation and hygiene: process and outcome evaluation of project SHINE, a school-based intervention in Rural Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Hetherington, Erin; Eggers, Matthijs; Wamoyi, Joyce; Hatfield, Jennifer; Manyama, Mange; Kutz, Susan; Bastien, Sheri

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Background Diarrheal disease is a major cause of mortality and morbidity in low and middle income countries with children being disproportionately affected. Project SHINE (Sanitation & Hygiene INnovation in Education) is a grassroots participatory science education and social entrepreneurship model to engage youth and the wider community in the development of sustainable strategies to improve sanitation and hygiene. Methods Based in rural and remote Tanzania, this pilot study engaged...

  6. Participatory action research advances climate change adaptation ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    2012-05-01

    May 1, 2012 ... The Application of Participatory Action Research to Climate Change Adaptation in ... Soil fertility management · A series of country case studies ... to 2012 as a joint initiative of Canada's International Development Research ...

  7. Participatory heritage

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    This new book provides a wide range of international guidance and perspectives on the issues surrounding the preservation of local cultural heritage, ranging from formal cultural heritage institutions to individual community members in the associated processes of creation, organization, access, use...... and preservation. Participatory Heritage explores issues including, how to manage copyright, ownership, orphan works, open data access to heritage representations and artefacts, crowdsourcing, cultural heritage amateurs, information as a commodity or information as public domain, sustainable preservation...

  8. Participatory telerobotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wissner-Gross, Alexander D.; Sullivan, Timothy M.

    2013-05-01

    We present a novel "participatory telerobotics" system that generalizes the existing concept of participatory sensing to include real-time teleoperation and telepresence by treating humans with mobile devices as ad-hoc telerobots. In our approach, operators or analysts first choose a desired location for remote surveillance or activity from a live geographic map and are then automatically connected via a coordination server to the nearest available trusted human. That human's device is then activated and begins recording and streaming back to the operator a live audiovisual feed for telepresence, while allowing the operator in turn to request complex teleoperative motions or actions from the human. Supported action requests currently include walking, running, leaning, and turning, all with controllable magnitudes and directions. Compliance with requests is automatically measured and scored in real time by fusing information received from the device's onboard sensors, including its accelerometers, gyroscope, magnetometer, GPS receiver, and cameras. Streams of action requests are visually presented by each device to its human in the form of an augmented reality game that rewards prompt physical compliance while remaining tolerant of network latency. Because of its ability to interactively elicit physical knowledge and operations through ad-hoc collaboration, we anticipate that our participatory telerobotics system will have immediate applications in the intelligence, retail, healthcare, security, and travel industries.

  9. A bottom-up partnership of Andean institutions to improve hydrological interventions using a participatory network of research basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buytaert, W.; Ochoa-Tocachi, B. F.; De Bièvre, B.

    2017-12-01

    Many watershed interventions in remote data-scarce areas respond to information gaps by extrapolating conventional approaches based on very limited local evidence. However, most interventions, including conservation strategies and adaptation measures, have not been evaluated properly for their hydrological benefits. This is particularly the case for the Andean region, where the complex climatic and hydrological characteristics combined with a very dynamic anthropogenic disturbance, require better monitoring. Here, we present the experience of a partnership of academic and non-governmental institutions who pioneered participatory hydrological monitoring in the Andes. Established in 2009, the Regional Initiative for Hydrological Monitoring of Andean Ecosystems (iMHEA), is a bottom-up initiative that complements the national monitoring networks and more conventional scientific observatories. Using a design based on a trading-space-for-time approach, over 30 paired catchments with a variety of watershed interventions are currently being monitored by 18 local stakeholders in 15 sites in the tropical Andes. Pooling these data into a hydrological impact model allowed the consortium to make more robust predictions about the effectiveness of catchment interventions to improve water resources management and to reduce risks. The collaborative nature of iMHEA has several strengths. We identify as most important of those the ability to: (i) standardize monitoring practices; (ii) ensure quality and technical support; (iii) share responsibility of monitoring activities; (iv) obtain project co-funding and complementarity; and, (v) promote decision maker-scientist engagement. As a result, this network has started to deliver useful information to multi-scale and multi-stakeholder decision making arenas. For example, in the context of growing investment in hydrological ecosystem services in Peru, the sites provide a new generation of hydrological information that allows for evidence

  10. Integrating community-based participatory research and informatics approaches to improve the engagement and health of underserved populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unertl, Kim M; Schaefbauer, Chris L; Campbell, Terrance R; Senteio, Charles; Siek, Katie A; Bakken, Suzanne; Veinot, Tiffany C

    2016-01-01

    We compare 5 health informatics research projects that applied community-based participatory research (CBPR) approaches with the goal of extending existing CBPR principles to address issues specific to health informatics research. We conducted a cross-case analysis of 5 diverse case studies with 1 common element: integration of CBPR approaches into health informatics research. After reviewing publications and other case-related materials, all coauthors engaged in collaborative discussions focused on CBPR. Researchers mapped each case to an existing CBPR framework, examined each case individually for success factors and barriers, and identified common patterns across cases. Benefits of applying CBPR approaches to health informatics research across the cases included the following: developing more relevant research with wider impact, greater engagement with diverse populations, improved internal validity, more rapid translation of research into action, and the development of people. Challenges of applying CBPR to health informatics research included requirements to develop strong, sustainable academic-community partnerships and mismatches related to cultural and temporal factors. Several technology-related challenges, including needs to define ownership of technology outputs and to build technical capacity with community partners, also emerged from our analysis. Finally, we created several principles that extended an existing CBPR framework to specifically address health informatics research requirements. Our cross-case analysis yielded valuable insights regarding CBPR implementation in health informatics research and identified valuable lessons useful for future CBPR-based research. The benefits of applying CBPR approaches can be significant, particularly in engaging populations that are typically underserved by health care and in designing patient-facing technology. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Medical

  11. Improving the effectiveness of interventions and investment in Andean watersheds through a participatory network of research basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ochoa-Tocachi, B. F.; Buytaert, W.; De Bièvre, B.

    2016-12-01

    Many watershed interventions in remote data-scarce areas respond to information gaps by extrapolating conventional approaches based on very limited local evidence. However, most interventions, including conservation strategies and adaptation measures, have not been evaluated properly for their hydrological benefits. This is particularly the case for the Andean region, where the complex climatic and hydrological characteristics combined with a very dynamic anthropogenic disturbance, require better monitoring. Here, we present the experience of a partnership of academic and non-governmental institutions who pioneered participatory hydrological monitoring in the Andes. Established in 2009, the Regional Initiative for Hydrological Monitoring of Andean Ecosystems (iMHEA), is a bottom-up initiative that complements the national monitoring networks and more conventional scientific observatories. Using a design based on a trading-space-for-time approach, over 30 paired catchments with a variety of watershed interventions are currently being monitored by 18 local stakeholders in 15 sites in the tropical Andes. Pooling these data into a hydrological impact model allowed the consortium to make more robust predictions about the effectiveness of catchment interventions to improve water resources management and to reduce risks. The collaborative nature of iMHEA has several strengths. We identify as most important of those the ability to: (i) standardize monitoring practices; (ii) ensure quality and technical support; (iii) share responsibility of monitoring activities; (iv) obtain project co-funding and complementarity; and, (v) promote decision maker-scientist engagement. As a result, this network has started to deliver useful information to multi-scale and multi-stakeholder decision making arenas. For example, in the context of growing investment in hydrological ecosystem services in Peru, the sites provide a new generation of hydrological information that allows for evidence

  12. SWOT analysis of a pediatric rehabilitation programme: a participatory evaluation fostering quality improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camden, Chantal; Swaine, Bonnie; Tétreault, Sylvie; Bergeron, Sophie

    2009-01-01

    To present the results of a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) analysis used as part of a process aimed at reorganising services provided within a pediatric rehabilitation programme (PRP) in Quebec, Canada and to report the perceptions of the planning committee members regarding the usefulness of the SWOT in this process. Thirty-six service providers working in the PRP completed a SWOT questionnaire and reported what they felt worked and what did not work in the existing model of care. Their responses were used by a planning committee over a 12-month period to assist in the development of a new service delivery model. Committee members shared their thoughts about the usefulness of the SWOT. Current programme strengths included favourable organisational climate and interdisciplinary work whereas weaknesses included lack of psychosocial support to families and long waiting times for children. Opportunities included working with community partners, whereas fear of losing professional autonomy with the new service model was a threat. The SWOT results helped the planning committee redefine the programme goals and make decisions to improve service coordination. SWOT analysis was deemed as a very useful tool to help guide service reorganisation. SWOT analysis appears to be an interesting evaluation tool to promote awareness among service providers regarding the current functioning of a rehabilitation programme. It fosters their active participation in the reorganisation of a new service delivery model for pediatric rehabilitation.

  13. Almond tree for soil quality improvement in southern Italy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Macci, C.; Doni, S.; Peruzzi, F.; Masciandaro, G.; Ceccanti, B.; Mennone, C.

    2009-01-01

    Soil degradation is one of the most important environmental problems worldwide recognized. The Mediterranean region, characterized by long dry periods followed by heavy bursts of rainfall, is particularly prone to soil erosion. The main goal of this study is to demonstrate the efficacy and suitability of the cultivation of almond trees as an environmental approach to improve soil organic carbon and biological conditions in order to mitigate risks of soil degradation due to topographic, climatic, and un proper farming managements. (Author)

  14. Warcraft and Civic Education: MMORPGs as Participatory Cultures and How Teachers Can Use Them to Improve Civic Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curry, Kristal

    2010-01-01

    Online role-playing games such as World Of Warcraft represent new participatory cultures in which today's students engage every day. They are appealing to players largely because of the social aspects of game play. Some features of massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) can be incorporated into classroom culture to create more…

  15. Participatory urbanism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ejsing-Duun, Stine

    2016-01-01

    cannot directly influence their structures, they can influence their contours through such leisure practices. In this chapter focus will be on how citizens’ engagement in locative leisure activities may allow them to co-create urban space. This participatory urbanism is a form of everyday democracy......Urban areas are planned structures that cannot easily be changed. Urban areas do however still afford physical spaces for various types of leisure expression and participation, from street art to parkour and from urban gaming to artistic happenings. Thus, while citizens who inhabit the urban areas...

  16. Stabilizing Dog Populations and Improving Animal and Public Health Through a Participatory Approach in Indigenous Communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schurer, J M; Phipps, K; Okemow, C; Beatch, H; Jenkins, E

    2015-09-01

    Free-roaming dog populations are a global concern for animal and human health including transmission of infectious disease (e.g. rabies, distemper and parasites), dog bite injuries/mortalities, animal welfare and adverse effects on wildlife. In Saskatchewan (SK), Canada, veterinary care is difficult to access in the remote and sparsely inhabited northern half of the province, where the population is predominately Indigenous. Even where veterinary clinics are readily available, there are important barriers such as cost, lack of transportation, unique cultural perspectives on dog husbandry and perceived need for veterinary care. We report the effects of introducing a community action plan designed to improve animal and human health, increase animal health literacy and benefit community well-being in two Indigenous communities where a dog-related child fatality recently occurred. Initial door-to-door dog demographic surveys indicated that most dogs were sexually intact (92% of 382 dogs), and few had ever been vaccinated (6%) or dewormed (6%). Approximately three animal-related injuries requiring medical care were reported in the communities per 1000 persons per year (95% CL: 1.6-6.6), and approximately 86% of 145 environmentally collected dog faecal samples contained parasites, far above levels reported in other urban or rural settings in SK. Following two subsidized spay/neuter clinics and active rehoming of dogs, parasite levels in dog faeces decreased significantly (P important changes were observed in the dog demographic profile. This project demonstrates the importance of engaging people using familiar, local resources and taking a community specific approach. As well, it highlights the value of integrated, cross-jurisdictional cooperation, utilizing the resources of university researchers, veterinary personnel, public health, environmental health and community-based advocates to work together to solve complex issues in One Health. On-going surveillance on dog

  17. Cyanobacteria Inoculation Improves Soil Stability and Fertility on Different Textured Soils: Gaining Insights for Applicability in Soil Restoration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia Chamizo

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Cyanobacteria are ubiquitous components of biocrust communities and the first colonizers of terrestrial ecosystems. They play multiple roles in the soil by fixing C and N and synthesizing exopolysaccharides, which increase soil fertility and water retention and improve soil structure and stability. Application of cyanobacteria as inoculants to promote biocrust development has been proposed as a novel biotechnological technique for restoring barren degraded areas and combating desertification processes in arid lands. However, previous to their widespread application under field conditions, research is needed to ensure the selection of the most suitable species. In this study, we inoculated two cyanobacterial species, Phormidium ambiguum (non N-fixing and Scytonema javanicum (N-fixing, on different textured soils (from silt loam to sandy, and analyzed cyanobacteria biocrust development and evolution of physicochemical soil properties for 3 months under laboratory conditions. Cyanobacteria inoculation led to biocrust formation in all soil types. Scanning electron microscope (SEM images showed contrasting structure of the biocrust induced by the two cyanobacteria. The one from P. ambiguum was characterized by thin filaments that enveloped soil particles and created a dense, entangled network, while the one from S. javanicum consisted of thicker filaments that grouped as bunches in between soil particles. Biocrust development, assessed by chlorophyll a content and crust spectral properties, was higher in S. javanicum-inoculated soils compared to P. ambiguum-inoculated soils. Either cyanobacteria inoculation did not increase soil hydrophobicity. S. javanicum promoted a higher increase in total organic C and total N content, while P. ambiguum was more effective in increasing total exopolysaccharide (EPS content and soil penetration resistance. The effects of cyanobacteria inoculation also differed among soil types and the highest improvement in soil

  18. Participatory design facilitates Person Centred Nursing in service improvement with older people: a secondary directed content analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolstenholme, Daniel; Ross, Helen; Cobb, Mark; Bowen, Simon

    2017-05-01

    To explore, using the example of a project working with older people in an outpatient setting in a large UK NHS Teaching hospital, how the constructs of Person Centred Nursing are reflected in interviews from participants in a Co-design led service improvement project. Person Centred Care and Person Centred Nursing are recognised terms in healthcare. Co-design (sometimes called participatory design) is an approach that seeks to involve all stakeholders in a creative process to deliver the best result, be this a product, technology or in this case a service. Co-design practice shares some of the underpinning philosophy of Person Centred Nursing and potentially has methods to aid in Person Centred Nursing implementation. The research design was a qualitative secondary Directed analysis. Seven interview transcripts from nurses and older people who had participated in a Co-design led improvement project in a large teaching hospital were transcribed and analysed. Two researchers analysed the transcripts for codes derived from McCormack & McCance's Person Centred Nursing Framework. The four most expressed codes were as follows: from the pre-requisites: knowing self; from care processes, engagement, working with patient's beliefs and values and shared Decision-making; and from Expected outcomes, involvement in care. This study describes the Co-design theory and practice that the participants responded to in the interviews and look at how the co-design activity facilitated elements of the Person Centred Nursing framework. This study adds to the rich literature about using emancipatory and transformational approaches to Person Centred Nursing development, and is the first study exploring explicitly the potential contribution of Co-design to this area. Methods from Co-design allow older people to contribute as equals in a practice development project, co-design methods can facilitate nursing staff to engage meaningfully with older participants and develop a shared

  19. Biochar Improves Performance of Plants for Mine Soil Revegetation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar (the solid by-product of pyrolysis of biomass), has the potential to improve plant performance for revegetation of mine soils by improving soil chemistry, fertility, moisture holding capacity and by binding heavy metals. We investigated the effect of gasified conifer sof...

  20. Chapter 7. Assessing soil factors in wildland improvement programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arthur R. Tiedemann; Carlos F. Lopez

    2004-01-01

    Soil factors are an important consideration for successful wildland range development or improvement programs. Even though many soil improvement and amelioration practices are not realistic for wildlands, their evaluation is an important step in selection of adapted plant materials for revegetation. This chapter presents information for wildland managers on: the...

  1. Compost improves urban soil and water quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Construction in urban zones compacts the soil, which hinders root growth and infiltration and may increase erosion, which may degrade water quality. The purpose of our study was to determine the whether planting prairie grasses and adding compost to urban soils can mitigate these concerns. We simula...

  2. Participatory assessment of soil erosion severity and performance of mitigation measures using stakeholder workshops in Koga catchment, Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jemberu, Walle; Baartman, Jantiene E M; Fleskens, Luuk; Ritsema, Coen J

    2018-02-01

    Farmers possess a wealth of knowledge regarding soil erosion and soil and water conservation (SWC), and there is a great demand to access it. However, there has been little effort to systematically document farmers' experiences and perceptions of SWC measures. Sustainable Land Management (SLM) has largely evolved through local traditional practices rather than adoption based on scientific evidence. This research aimed to assess soil erosion and performance of different SWC measures from the farmers' perspective by documenting their perceptions and experiences in Koga catchment, Ethiopia. To this aim, workshops were organised in three sub-catchments differing in slopes and SWC measures. Workshops included group discussions and field monitoring of erosion indicators and systematically describing the status of soil erosion, soil fertility and yield to assess the performance of SWC measures. Results show that farmers are aware of the harmful effects of ongoing soil erosion and of the impacts of mitigation measures on their farms. Sheet erosion was found to be the most widespread form of erosion while rill damage was critical on plots cultivated to cereals on steep slopes. The average rill erosion rates were 24.2 and 47.3 t/ha/y in treated and untreated farmlands, respectively. SWC reduced rill erosion on average by more than 48%. However, the impacts of SWC measures varied significantly between sub-watersheds, and farmers believed that SWC measures did not prevent erosion completely. Comparatively, graded stone-faced soil bunds revealed maximum desired impacts and were most appreciated by farmers, whereas level bunds caused water logging. Most traditional ditches were highly graded and begun incising and affected production of cereals. Despite the semi-quantitative nature of the methodology, using farmers' perceptions and experiences to document land degradation and the impacts of SWC measures is crucial as they are the daily users of the land and therefore directly

  3. Implementing guidelines and training initiatives to improve cross-cultural communication in primary care consultations: a qualitative participatory European study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teunissen, E; Gravenhorst, K; Dowrick, C; Van Weel-Baumgarten, E; Van den Driessen Mareeuw, F; de Brún, T; Burns, N; Lionis, C; Mair, F S; O'Donnell, C; O'Reilly-de Brún, M; Papadakaki, M; Saridaki, A; Spiegel, W; Van Weel, C; Van den Muijsenbergh, M; MacFarlane, A

    2017-02-10

    Cross-cultural communication in primary care is often difficult, leading to unsatisfactory, substandard care. Supportive evidence-based guidelines and training initiatives (G/TIs) exist to enhance cross cultural communication but their use in practice is sporadic. The objective of this paper is to elucidate how migrants and other stakeholders can adapt, introduce and evaluate such G/TIs in daily clinical practice. We undertook linked qualitative case studies to implement G/TIs focused on enhancing cross cultural communication in primary care, in five European countries. We combined Normalisation Process Theory (NPT) as an analytical framework, with Participatory Learning and Action (PLA) as the research method to engage migrants, primary healthcare providers and other stakeholders. Across all five sites, 66 stakeholders participated in 62 PLA-style focus groups over a 19 month period, and took part in activities to adapt, introduce, and evaluate the G/TIs. Data, including transcripts of group meetings and researchers' fieldwork reports, were coded and thematically analysed by each team using NPT. In all settings, engaging migrants and other stakeholders was challenging but feasible. Stakeholders made significant adaptations to the G/TIs to fit their local context, for example, changing the focus of a G/TI from palliative care to mental health; or altering the target audience from General Practitioners (GPs) to the wider multidisciplinary team. They also progressed plans to deliver them in routine practice, for example liaising with GP practices regarding timing and location of training sessions and to evaluate their impact. All stakeholders reported benefits of the implemented G/TIs in daily practice. Training primary care teams (clinicians and administrators) resulted in a more tolerant attitude and more effective communication, with better focus on migrants' needs. Implementation of interpreter services was difficult mainly because of financial and other

  4. Integrating Science-Based Co-management, Partnerships, Participatory Processes and Stewardship Incentives to Improve the Performance of Small-Scale Fisheries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kendra A. Karr

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Small scale fisheries are critically important for the provision of food security, livelihoods, and economic development for billions of people. Yet, most of these fisheries appear to not be achieving either fisheries or conservation goals, with respect to creating healthier oceans that support more fish, feed more people and improve livelihoods. Research and practical experience have elucidated many insights into how to improve the performance of small-scale fisheries. Here, we present lessons learned from five case studies of small-scale fisheries in Cuba, Mexico, the Philippines, and Belize. The major lessons that arise from these cases are: (1 participatory processes empower fishers, increase compliance, and support integration of local and scientific knowledge; (2 partnership across sectors improves communication and community buy-in; (3 scientific analysis can lead fishery reform and be directly applicable to co-management structures. These case studies suggest that a fully integrated approach that implements a participatory process to generate a scientific basis for fishery management (e.g., data collection, analysis, design and to design management measures among stakeholders will increase the probability that small-scale fisheries will implement science-based management and improve their performance.

  5. Participatory soil and water conservation planning using a financial analysis tool in the west usambara highlands of tanzania

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tenge, A.J.M.; Okoba, B.O.; Sterk, G.

    2007-01-01

    Despite decades of soil and water conservation (SWC) efforts in Tanzania, the adoption of the recommended SWC measures by farmers is minimal. In the past, SWC plans did not incorporate farmers' knowledge, and the economics of SWC was not given much attention at the planning stage. This research

  6. Participatory soil and water conservation planning using an erosion mapping tool in the central highlands of kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Okoba, B.O.; Tenge, A.J.M.; Sterk, G.; Stroosnijder, L.

    2007-01-01

    Despite several approaches that aimed at mobilising East African farmers to embrace soil and water conservation (SWC) activities, farmers hardly responded since they were seldom involved in the planning of SWC activities. Two tools that employ farmers' participation were developed and applied at

  7. Improvements in the biotreatment of soil contaminated by heavy hydrocarbons

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paquin, J. [Sanexen Environmental Services Inc., Varennes, PQ (Canada)

    2006-07-01

    This presentation discussed improvements in the biotreatment of soil contaminated by heavy hydrocarbons. The presentation provided information on the background for the investigation such as: difficulty for biotreatment in soil to deal with heavy weathered hydrocarbons and fine grained soils; the involvement of the Montreal Centre of Excellence for Brownfield Remediation (MCEBR) to develop state of the art environmental solutions; and, the selection of Sanexen as the organization with the best price and best performance warranty to perform the required decontamination. The objectives of the study were to improve the performance of biotreatment of soil contaminated with heavy petroleum hydrocarbons; reduce soil biotreatment costs by 30 per cent; improve knowledge and understanding for this type of treatment; and, better identify constraints and optimal strategies in view of these constraints. Specific objectives that were discussed included: improving the microbial flora, attaining a favorable soil temperature at a low cost, identifying the best amendments for bulking of soil, increasing bio-availability of the contaminants, and identifying optimal mechanical handling of the soil. The presentation discussed soils treated; research and development carried out; standard method of biotreatment; alternative methods tested; initial investigation by the MCEBR; pilot test carried out by Sanexen; and, results of the pilot test. As part of the research program with MCEBR, soils that received different amendments were tested at the Biotechnology Research Institute (BRI) of the National Research Council for their ability to degrade added hexadecane and naphthalene. Soil at various stages of the treatment was also sampled and tested by the (BRI). It was concluded that the biotreatment of heavy hydrocarbons in fine grained soils is feasible and that the techniques used reduced biotreatment costs by approximately 25 per cent.

  8. Improvement of engineering soil properties using non -traditional additives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Waheed Mohanned

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Laboratory experiments are conducted to evaluate the effect of some non-traditional additives on the engineering properties of clayey soil, which show problematic phenomenon when used as a construction material. The conducted tests covered the influence of these additives on various parameters like consistency limits, compaction characteristics and CBR value. Two nontraditional stabilizers are selected in this study, polymers and phosphoric acid at three different percent which are (1%, 3% and 5% of the dry soil weight. It is concluded that addition of the polymer to the clayey soil results in a slight increase in plastic limit while the liquid limit is not affected accompanied by a marginal decrease in the dry unit weight while the optimum moisture content remains unaffected. The addition of phosphoric acid to the clayey soil has no effect on its Atterberg limits. In general, it is observed that polymer is found to be ineffective as a stabilizer to improve clayey soils, especially in small amounts of about (3%. The phosphoric acid treated soil gained better improvement for all amounts of additive used. For (3% acid treated soil the CBR is about (360% compared to that of untreated soil, for that, it can be concluded that the improvement using phosphoric acid in the clay soils is a promising option and can be applied to solve the geotechnical stabilization problems.

  9. Soil hydraulic properties near saturation, an improved conductivity model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Børgesen, Christen Duus; Jacobsen, Ole Hørbye; Hansen, Søren

    2006-01-01

    of commonly used hydraulic conductivity models and give suggestions for improved models. Water retention and near saturated and saturated hydraulic conductivity were measured for a variety of 81 top and subsoils. The hydraulic conductivity models by van Genuchten [van Genuchten, 1980. A closed-form equation...... for predicting the hydraulic conductivity of unsaturated soils. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J. 44, 892–898.] (vGM) and Brooks and Corey, modified by Jarvis [Jarvis, 1991. MACRO—A Model of Water Movement and Solute Transport in Macroporous Soils. Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. Department of Soil Sciences....... Optimising a matching factor (k0) improved the fit considerably whereas optimising the l-parameter in the vGM model improved the fit only slightly. The vGM was improved with an empirical scaling function to account for the rapid increase in conductivity near saturation. Using the improved models...

  10. Soil quality improvement through conversion to sprinkler irrigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conversion from furrow to sprinkler irrigation is a recommended conservation practice for improved water use efficiency (and/or erosion control), but effects on soil quality indicators were unknown. Several soil quality indicators were therefore quantified within a northwestern U.S. Conservation Eff...

  11. Effects of a worker participatory program for improving work environments on job stressors and mental health among workers: a controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobayashi, Yuka; Kaneyoshi, Akiko; Yokota, Atsuko; Kawakami, Norito

    2008-01-01

    The Mental Health Action Checklist for a Better Workplace Environment (MHACL) is a tool for a worker participatory approach to improve work environments for worker mental health. The present study investigated the effects of an organizational intervention using the MHACL on reducing job stressors and the psychological distress of workers of a manufacturing enterprise in Japan with a controlled study design. Nine of 45 departments participated in a work environment improvement program, including planning workshops, implementation and monitoring, between July and December 2005 (intervention group, n=321). The remaining 36 departments served as the control group (n=750). Outcomes (job stressors, worksite support, psychological distress, etc.), measured using the Brief Job Stress Questionnaire, as well as sick leave days taken from the company record, were recorded before and six months after the program for both groups. Among women, skill underutilization, supervisor and coworker support, psychological distress, and job satisfaction changed more favorably in the intervention group than in the control group (pparticipation in the planning workshops and among departments with a 50% or higher rate of implemented vs. planned actions. A worker participatory organizational intervention using the MHACL seems effective for promoting mental health among Japanese white-collar women.

  12. Participatory Innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Buur, Jacob; Matthews, Ben

    2008-01-01

    An increasing number of corporations engage with users in co-innovation of products and services. But there are a number of competing perspectives on how best to integrate these understandings into existing corporate innovation development processes. This paper maps out three of the dominant appr...... the challenges such an approach sets to innovation management, and discuss research directions we see as fundamental to the development of the field of user-driven innovation. Udgivelsesdato: September......An increasing number of corporations engage with users in co-innovation of products and services. But there are a number of competing perspectives on how best to integrate these understandings into existing corporate innovation development processes. This paper maps out three of the dominant...... approaches, compares them in terms of goals, methods and basic philosophy, and shows how they may beneficially enrich one another. We will present an industrial innovation case that has been instrumental to the development of what we have termed ‘Participatory Innovation’. Based on this we will list...

  13. Types, harms and improvement of saline soil in Songnen Plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhengjun; Zhuang, Jingjing; Zhao, Anping; Li, Xinxin

    2018-03-01

    Saline soil is an extremely difficult and modified soil, widely distributed around the world. According to UN-UNESCO and FAO, the world’s saline soil area is about 9.54×108hm2, and there is a growing trend, every year in 1.0×106-1.5×106hm2 speed growth, the effective utilization of land resources to the world is the most serious threat. The total area of saline-alkali land in China is about 9.91×107hm2, including the Songnen Plain, which is called one of the three major saline soil concentrations in the world. The Songnen plain is an important grain producing area in China, and the saline soil occupies most of the Songnen plain, so it is of great significance to study the saline soil and improvement in Songnen plain.

  14. Combining phytoextraction and biochar addition improves soil biochemical properties in a soil contaminated with Cd.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Huanping; Li, Zhian; Fu, Shenglei; Méndez, Ana; Gascó, Gabriel; Paz-Ferreiro, Jorge

    2015-01-01

    The main goal of phytoremediation is to improve ecosystem functioning. Soil biochemical properties are considered as effective indicators of soil quality and are sensitive to various environmental stresses, including heavy metal contamination. The biochemical response in a soil contaminated with cadmium was tested after several treatments aimed to reduce heavy metal availability including liming, biochar addition and phytoextraction using Amaranthus tricolor L. Two biochars were added to the soil: eucalyptus pyrolysed at 600 °C (EB) and poultry litter at 400 °C (PLB). Two liming treatments were chosen with the aim of bringing soil pH to the same values as in the treatments EB and PLB. The properties studied included soil microbial biomass C, soil respiration and the activities of invertase, β-glucosidase, β-glucosaminidase, urease and phosphomonoesterase. Both phytoremediation and biochar addition improved soil biochemical properties, although results were enzyme specific. For biochar addition these changes were partly, but not exclusively, mediated by alterations in soil pH. A careful choice of biochar must be undertaken to optimize the remediation process from the point of view of metal phytoextraction and soil biological activity. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Impact of regression methods on improved effects of soil structure on soil water retention estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Phuong Minh; De Pue, Jan; Le, Khoa Van; Cornelis, Wim

    2015-06-01

    Increasing the accuracy of pedotransfer functions (PTFs), an indirect method for predicting non-readily available soil features such as soil water retention characteristics (SWRC), is of crucial importance for large scale agro-hydrological modeling. Adding significant predictors (i.e., soil structure), and implementing more flexible regression algorithms are among the main strategies of PTFs improvement. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the improved effect of categorical soil structure information on estimating soil-water content at various matric potentials, which has been reported in literature, could be enduringly captured by regression techniques other than the usually applied linear regression. Two data mining techniques, i.e., Support Vector Machines (SVM), and k-Nearest Neighbors (kNN), which have been recently introduced as promising tools for PTF development, were utilized to test if the incorporation of soil structure will improve PTF's accuracy under a context of rather limited training data. The results show that incorporating descriptive soil structure information, i.e., massive, structured and structureless, as grouping criterion can improve the accuracy of PTFs derived by SVM approach in the range of matric potential of -6 to -33 kPa (average RMSE decreased up to 0.005 m3 m-3 after grouping, depending on matric potentials). The improvement was primarily attributed to the outperformance of SVM-PTFs calibrated on structureless soils. No improvement was obtained with kNN technique, at least not in our study in which the data set became limited in size after grouping. Since there is an impact of regression techniques on the improved effect of incorporating qualitative soil structure information, selecting a proper technique will help to maximize the combined influence of flexible regression algorithms and soil structure information on PTF accuracy.

  16. Bacterial polyextremotolerant bioemulsifiers from arid soils improve water retention capacity and humidity uptake in sandy soil

    KAUST Repository

    Raddadi, Noura; Giacomucci, Lucia; Marasco, Ramona; Daffonchio, Daniele; Cherif, Ameur; Fava, Fabio

    2018-01-01

    Water stress is a critical issue for plant growth in arid sandy soils. Here, we aimed to select bacteria producing polyextremotolerant surface-active compounds capable of improving water retention and humidity uptake in sandy soils.From Tunisian desert and saline systems, we selected eleven isolates able to highly emulsify different organic solvents. The bioemulsifying activities were stable with 30% NaCl, at 4 and 120 °C and in a pH range 4-12. Applications to a sandy soil of the partially purified surface-active compounds improved soil water retention up to 314.3% compared to untreated soil. Similarly, after 36 h of incubation, the humidity uptake rate of treated sandy soil was up to 607.7% higher than untreated controls.Overall, results revealed that polyextremotolerant bioemulsifiers of bacteria from arid and desert soils represent potential sources to develop new natural soil-wetting agents for improving water retention in arid soils.

  17. Bacterial polyextremotolerant bioemulsifiers from arid soils improve water retention capacity and humidity uptake in sandy soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raddadi, Noura; Giacomucci, Lucia; Marasco, Ramona; Daffonchio, Daniele; Cherif, Ameur; Fava, Fabio

    2018-05-31

    Water stress is a critical issue for plant growth in arid sandy soils. Here, we aimed to select bacteria producing polyextremotolerant surface-active compounds capable of improving water retention and humidity uptake in sandy soils. From Tunisian desert and saline systems, we selected eleven isolates able to highly emulsify different organic solvents. The bioemulsifying activities were stable with 30% NaCl, at 4 and 120 °C and in a pH range 4-12. Applications to a sandy soil of the partially purified surface-active compounds improved soil water retention up to 314.3% compared to untreated soil. Similarly, after 36 h of incubation, the humidity uptake rate of treated sandy soil was up to 607.7% higher than untreated controls. Overall, results revealed that polyextremotolerant bioemulsifiers of bacteria from arid and desert soils represent potential sources to develop new natural soil-wetting agents for improving water retention in arid soils.

  18. Bacterial polyextremotolerant bioemulsifiers from arid soils improve water retention capacity and humidity uptake in sandy soil

    KAUST Repository

    Raddadi, Noura

    2018-05-31

    Water stress is a critical issue for plant growth in arid sandy soils. Here, we aimed to select bacteria producing polyextremotolerant surface-active compounds capable of improving water retention and humidity uptake in sandy soils.From Tunisian desert and saline systems, we selected eleven isolates able to highly emulsify different organic solvents. The bioemulsifying activities were stable with 30% NaCl, at 4 and 120 °C and in a pH range 4-12. Applications to a sandy soil of the partially purified surface-active compounds improved soil water retention up to 314.3% compared to untreated soil. Similarly, after 36 h of incubation, the humidity uptake rate of treated sandy soil was up to 607.7% higher than untreated controls.Overall, results revealed that polyextremotolerant bioemulsifiers of bacteria from arid and desert soils represent potential sources to develop new natural soil-wetting agents for improving water retention in arid soils.

  19. A Framework for Clarifying “Participation” in Participatory Research to Prevent its Rejection for the Wrong Reasons

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barreteau, O.; Bots, P.W.G.; Daniell, K.A.

    2010-01-01

    Participatory research relies on stakeholder inputs to obtain its acclaimed benefits of improved social relevance, validity, and actionability of research outcomes. We focus here on participatory research in the context of natural resource management. Participants’ acceptance of participatory

  20. Application of Prefabricated Vertical Drain in Soil Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tedjakusuma B.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Although the use of Prefabricated Vertical Drain (PVD in soil improvement is not new, this paper is interesting since it gives the full spectrum from preliminary design stage; trial embankment and pilot test to final soil improvement. The final installation of the PVD was based on the soil investigation report and the results of instrumentation monitoring. Finally, using back analysis, vertical and horizontal coefficients of consolidation and compression index can be determined, which can be applied to predict a more accurate prediction of settlement.

  1. Improving geotechnical properties of clayey soil using polymer material

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karim Hussein

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available This study illustrates the application of polymer material for clayey soil stabilization. The article will focus on studying the strength behavior of the clayey soils reinforced with homogenously polymer fiber. In the current research, “polypropylene” was selected as polymer material to reinforce the natural clay soil. This polymer fiber was added to the clayey soil with four different percentages of (0, 1.5, 3, and 5% by weight of soil. Various tests with different polymer contents were performed to study the effect of using such a polymer as a stabilizing agent on geotechnical properties of clay. As the fiber content increases, the optimum moisture content (OMC is increased while the specific gravity decreases. For Atterberg’s limits, the results indicated increasing liquid limit and plasticity index while decreasing plastic limit with increase in polymer content. The outcomes of the tests also reflected a considerable improvement in the unconfined compressive strength with noticeable improvement in the shear strength parameter (undrained shear strength, cu of the treated soils. The undrained shear strength obtained from treated soil with 5% polymer addition is more than three times that of the untreated soil. With an increase in polymer content, the consolidation parameters (Compression index Cc and recompression index Cr decreases. Finally, the benefit of the reinforcement is increased with increasing polymer fiber content.

  2. IMPROVEMENT OF EXPANSIVE SOIL BY USING SILICA FUME

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kawther Y. AL-Soudany

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Expansive soils are characterized by their considerable volumetric deformations representing a serious challenge for the stability of the engineering structures such as foundations. Consequently, the measurements of swelling properties, involving swelling and swell pressure, become extremely important in spite of their determination needs a lot of time with costly particular equipment. Thus, serious researches attempts have been tried to remedy such soils by means of additives such as cement, lime, steel fibers, stone dust, fly ash and silica fume. In this research the study of silica fume has studied to treatment expansion soil, the clay soil was brought from Al-Nahrawan in Baghdad. The soil selected for the present investigation prepared in laboratory by mixing natural soil with different percentages of bentonite (30, 50 and 70% by soil dry weight. The test program included the effect of bentonite on natural soil then study the effect of silica fume (SF on prepared soil by adding different percentage of silica fume (3, 5, and 7 by weight to the prepared soils and the influence of these admixtures was observed by comparing their results with those of untreated soils (prepared soils. The results show that both liquid limit and plasticity index decreased with the addition of silica fume, while the plastic limit is increase with its addition. As well as, a decrease in the maximum dry unit weight with an increase in the optimum water contents have been obtained with increasing the percentage of addition of the silica fume. It is also observed an improvement in the free swell, swelling pressure by using silica fume. It can be concluded that the silica fume stabilization may be used as a successful way for the treatment of expansive clay.

  3. the use of integrated soil fertility approach in the improvement of soil

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Sammy

    improvement of soil texture and structure, thus boosters food production in the ecological region. ... the farm (Strainer 1984, Nicholaida et al 1985, Juo 1987, Renand et al 1997, ... degraded each year, due principally to water and wind erosion.

  4. Design and implementation of participatory hygiene and sanitation ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background: The study is a continuation of a research carried out in Luweero district in Uganda1. It investigated whether PHAST was a suitable tool for reducing transmission of soil transmitted helminths. PHAST means Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Transformation; a participatory approach that uses visual tools to ...

  5. Strength Improvement of Clay Soil by Using Stone Powder

    OpenAIRE

    Ahmed Sameer Abdulrasool

    2015-01-01

    Soil stabilization with stone powder is a good solution for the construction of subgrade for road way and railway lines, especially under the platforms and mostly in transition zones between embankments and rigid structures, where the mechanical properties of supporting soils are very influential. Stone powder often has a unique composition which justifies the need for research to study the feasibility of using this stone powder type for ground improvement applications. This paper presents re...

  6. Stabilization of Pb and Cd contaminated soils and soil quality improvements using waste oyster shells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ok, Yong Sik; Lim, Jung Eun; Moon, Deok Hyun

    2011-02-01

    Large amounts of oyster shells are produced as a by-product of shellfish farming in coastal regions without beneficial use options. Accordingly, this study was conducted to evaluate the potential for the use of waste oyster shells (WOS) containing a high amount of CaCO₃ to improve soil quality and to stabilize heavy metals in soil. To accomplish this, an incubation experiment was conducted to evaluate the ability of the addition of 1-5 wt% WOS to stabilize the Pb (total 1,246 mg/kg) and Cd (total 17 mg/kg) in a contaminated soil. The effectiveness of the WOS treatments was evaluated using various single extraction techniques. Soil amended with WOS was cured for 30 days complied with the Korean Standard Test method (0.1 M·HCl extraction). The Pb and Cd concentrations were less than the Korean warning and countermeasure standards following treatment with 5 wt% WOS. Moreover, the concentrations of Cd were greatly reduced in response to WOS treatment following extraction using 0.01 M·CaCl₂, which is strongly associated with phytoavailability. Furthermore, the soil pH and exchangeable Ca increased significantly in response to WOS treatment. Taken together, the results of this study indicated that WOS amendments improved soil quality and stabilized Pb and Cd in contaminated soil. However, extraction with 0.43 M·CH₃ COOH revealed that remobilization of heavy metals can occur when the soil reaches an acidic condition.

  7. Participatory Materials Development in Rural Zambia

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    actors, and decision making and power relationships in a community context. ... the participatory materials development process in Chiawa was framed within ... enquiry that can help to improve the rationality and justice of practitioners' own ...

  8. THE WORMS COMPOST - EFFECTIVE FERTILIZER FOR IMPROVING DEGRADED SOILS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larisa CREMENEAC

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Management of organic waste is a difficult, complex and intractable in Moldova, according to international standards. Acute problem of organic matter from livestock sector waste is generated by storing them in unauthorized areas. Organic waste management strategies require different methods. One of them is organic waste bio conversion technology by worm’s cultivation. As the main natural wealth of the Republic of Moldova, soil requires a special care. Agriculture, in particular, should pay attention to the soil’s humus and nutrient status – and restore losses of humus and the nutrients used by crops. This requires measures to improve soil fertility. Land use provides, first of all return losses of humus and nutrients used by plants. Therefore measures required to improve soil fertility. The essence of the research was to highlight the role of worms compost improve the soil. To this end, in ETS "Maximovca" was organized an experiment that included three groups (two - experimental, to fund worms compost and one - control the natural background. Observations on soil fertility have been conducted over three years. The soil samples were collected by usual methods determined values of organic matter and humus. The results of the investigations, to determine the values of organic matter and humus samples collected from surface and depth 15 cm exceeded that of the sample control group to 29,7%; 11,4% and 34,3%; 37,1% in experimental group I and 9,3%; 11,6% and 45,5%; 45,5% in experimental group II. Therefore, worms compost embedded in a dose of 3-4 tons / ha during three years, has improved the fertility of the soil

  9. Towards improved public awareness for climate related disaster risk reduction in South Africa: A Participatory Development Communication perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tigere Chagutah

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Southern Africa has frequently been struck by damaging climate hazards which increasingly continue to threaten sustainable development efforts. Ominously, climate models predict that the incidence of major ‘wet’ events, such as floods and cyclones will increase in frequency against the background of a changing climate. Unfortunately, local mechanisms for communicating and raising public awareness of the consequent risks and appropriate risk reduction options remain weak. At the core of policy responses to the threat posed by climate related hazards, the South African government has adopted a disaster risk reduction approach to disaster management. This article details how, among many other measures to limit the adverse impacts of natural hazards, South Africa’s National Disaster Management Framework calls for the implementation of effective public awareness activities to increase the knowledge among communities of the risks they face and what risk-minimising actions they can take. Emphasis is laid on the importance of information provision and knowledge building among at-risk communities. Citing established theories and strategies, the author proposes a participatory development communication approach through Development Support Communication strategies for the provision of disaster risk reduction public awareness activities by government and other disaster risk reduction role-players in South Africa. By way of a review of completed studies and literature, the article provides guidance on the planning and execution of successful public communication campaigns and also discusses the constraints of communication campaigns as an intervention for comprehensive disaster risk reduction.

  10. Participatory ergonomics intervention for improving work-related musculoskeletal disorders in the 'One Tambon One Product' industry in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hongsranagon, Prathurng; Somana, Yaowanit; Maha-Udomporn, Somkiet; Siriwong, Wattasit; Havanond, Piyalamporn; Deelertyuenyong, Nathawan; Petchprasit, Viroj; Munkatunyu, Nantawadee; Saksri, Pramrudee

    2011-12-01

    This paper relates to the first phase one of a three-phase study. Phase 1 investigated and identified risk factors for work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs) in 26 'One Tambon One Product' (OTOP) groups working in the informal sector. Data was collected from 93 participants in Khangkoi District, Saraburi Province, Thailand during 2009-2010. Results of inspections and direct observations of work places and interviews of managers and workers showed risk factors related to posture, repetition, force and duration in the workers' operations and the application of a checklist revealed that the OTOP groups had simple work processes. A knowledge-attitude-practice survey of managers and workers indicated that there was a moderate to high awareness regarding ergonomics and occupational safety and health principles and approximately 15% of workers reported WMSDs at a moderate level, mainly associated with lower back and shoulder pains, due to protracted periods of sitting. Specific recommendations in response to OTOP conditions and needs were made. The second phase of the study involves a participatory ergonomics worksite intervention by a number of stakeholders and the final phase deals with an evaluation of the intervention and an establishment of guidelines for ergonomics programs for OTOP groups.

  11. Participatory science and innovation for improved sanitation and hygiene: process and outcome evaluation of project SHINE, a school-based intervention in Rural Tanzania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin Hetherington

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Diarrheal disease is a major cause of mortality and morbidity in low and middle income countries with children being disproportionately affected. Project SHINE (Sanitation & Hygiene INnovation in Education is a grassroots participatory science education and social entrepreneurship model to engage youth and the wider community in the development of sustainable strategies to improve sanitation and hygiene. Methods Based in rural and remote Tanzania, this pilot study engaged pastoralist high-school students and communities in the development and evaluation of culturally and contextually relevant strategies to improve sanitation and hygiene. Using a train-the-trainer approach, key activities included teacher workshops, school-based lessons, extra-curricular activities, community events and a One Health sanitation science fair which showcased projects related to water, sanitation and hygiene in relation to human and animal health. The process and outcome of the study were evaluated through qualitative interviews and focus group discussions with diverse project participants, as well as pre- and post- questionnaires completed by students on knowledge, attitudes and practices concerning sanitation and hygiene. Results The questionnaire results at baseline and follow-up showed statistically significant improvements on key measures including a decrease in unhygienic behaviors, an increase in the perceived importance of handwashing and intention to use the toilet, and increased communication in the social network about the importance of clean water and improved sanitation and hygiene practices, however there were no significant changes in sanitation related knowledge. Qualitative data highlighted strong leadership emerging from youth and enthusiasm from teachers and students concerning the overall approach in the project, including the use of participatory methods. There was a high degree of community engagement with hundreds of

  12. Participatory science and innovation for improved sanitation and hygiene: process and outcome evaluation of project SHINE, a school-based intervention in Rural Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hetherington, Erin; Eggers, Matthijs; Wamoyi, Joyce; Hatfield, Jennifer; Manyama, Mange; Kutz, Susan; Bastien, Sheri

    2017-02-07

    Diarrheal disease is a major cause of mortality and morbidity in low and middle income countries with children being disproportionately affected. Project SHINE (Sanitation & Hygiene INnovation in Education) is a grassroots participatory science education and social entrepreneurship model to engage youth and the wider community in the development of sustainable strategies to improve sanitation and hygiene. Based in rural and remote Tanzania, this pilot study engaged pastoralist high-school students and communities in the development and evaluation of culturally and contextually relevant strategies to improve sanitation and hygiene. Using a train-the-trainer approach, key activities included teacher workshops, school-based lessons, extra-curricular activities, community events and a One Health sanitation science fair which showcased projects related to water, sanitation and hygiene in relation to human and animal health. The process and outcome of the study were evaluated through qualitative interviews and focus group discussions with diverse project participants, as well as pre- and post- questionnaires completed by students on knowledge, attitudes and practices concerning sanitation and hygiene. The questionnaire results at baseline and follow-up showed statistically significant improvements on key measures including a decrease in unhygienic behaviors, an increase in the perceived importance of handwashing and intention to use the toilet, and increased communication in the social network about the importance of clean water and improved sanitation and hygiene practices, however there were no significant changes in sanitation related knowledge. Qualitative data highlighted strong leadership emerging from youth and enthusiasm from teachers and students concerning the overall approach in the project, including the use of participatory methods. There was a high degree of community engagement with hundreds of community members participating in school-based events

  13. Participatory Design with Dyslectics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vangeli, Panagiota; Stage, Jan

    2017-01-01

    Participatory Design has been used successfully in many projects but the question is how participatory design works with people with a cognitive disorder like dyslexia. In this study, we analyzed observations of participatory design sessions with dyslectic participants for developing designs...... of a reading software application by applying two participatory design methods: the IDEAS and CI methods. Furthermore, we conducted online surveys to gather information on dyslectics participants’ and their special-education teachers’ opinion regarding the participatory design process, methods and final...... designs. The results indicate that participatory design works effectively with dyslectic people provided the participation of Proxy Users to represent dyslectics, when it is necessary, the participation of an experienced on dyslexia facilitator who has the knowledge to address incidents caused due...

  14. Utilisation of rice husk ash for improvement of deficient soils in Nigeria

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The studies generally showed improvement in the geotechnical properties of soils, either modified or stabilised with the ash, thus indicating the potentials of using this agricultural waste for improvement of geotechnical properties of ... Keywords: Black cotton soil, Deficient soil, Laterite, Rice husk ash, Soil improvement ...

  15. FEASIBILITY OF HYDRAULIC FRACTURING OF SOILS TO IMPROVE REMEDIAL ACTIONS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hydraulic fracturing, a method of increasing fluid flow within the subsurface, should improve the effectiveness of several remedial techniques, including pump and treat, vapor extraction, bio-remediation, and soil-flushing. he technique is widely used to increase the yields of oi...

  16. Mechanical Behaviour of Soil Improved by Alkali Activated Binders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enza Vitale

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The use of alkali activated binders to improve engineering properties of clayey soils is a novel solution, and an alternative to the widely diffused improvement based on the use of traditional binders such as lime and cement. In the paper the alkaline activation of two fly ashes, by-products of coal combustion thermoelectric power plants, has been presented. These alkali activated binders have been mixed with a clayey soil for evaluating the improvement of its mechanical behaviour. One-dimensional compression tests on raw and treated samples have been performed with reference to the effects induced by type of binder, binder contents and curing time. The experimental evidences at volume scale of the treated samples have been directly linked to the chemo-physical evolution of the binders, investigated over curing time by means of X Ray Diffraction. Test results showed a high reactivity of the alkali activated binders promoting the formation of new mineralogical phases responsible for the mechanical improvement of treated soil. The efficiency of alkali activated binders soil treatment has been highlighted by comparison with mechanical performance induced by Portland cement.

  17. Improving maternity care in the Dominican Republic: a pilot study of a community-based participatory research action plan by an international healthcare team.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Jennifer; Gossett, Sarah; Burgos, Rosa; Cáceres, Ramona; Tejada, Carmen; Dominguez García, Luis; Ambrosio Rosario, Angel; Almonte, Asela; Perez, Lydia J

    2015-05-01

    This article is a report of the process and results of a feasibility pilot study to improve the quality of maternity care in a sample of 31 women and their newborns delivering in a public, tertiary hospital in the Dominican Republic. The pilot study was the first "action step" taken as a result of a formative, community-based participatory research (CBPR) study conducted between 2008 and 2010 by an interdisciplinary, international partnership of U.S. academic researchers, Dominican medical/nursing personnel, and Dominican community health workers. Health personnel and community health workers separately identified indicators most important to measure quality of antepartum maternity care: laboratory and diagnostic studies and respectful, interpersonal communication. At the midpoint and the completion of data collection, the CBPR team evaluated the change in quality indicators to assess improvement in care. The pilot study supports the idea that joint engagement of community health workers, health personnel, and academic researchers with data creation and patient monitoring is motivating for all to continue to improve services in the cultural context of the Dominican Republic. © The Author(s) 2014.

  18. Finding ergonomic solutions--participatory approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hignett, Sue; Wilson, John R; Morris, Wendy

    2005-05-01

    This paper gives an overview of the theory of participatory ergonomics interventions and summary examples from a range of industries, including health care, military, manufacturing, production and processing, services, construction and transport. The definition of participatory approaches includes interventions at macro (organizational, systems) levels as well as micro (individual), where workers are given the opportunity and power to use their knowledge to address ergonomic problems relating to their own working activities. Examples are given where a cost-effective benefit has been measured using musculoskeletal sickness absence and compensation costs. Other examples, using different outcome measures, also showed improvements, for example, an increase in productivity, improved communication between staff and management, reduction in risk factors, the development of new processes and new designs for work environments and activities. Three cases are described from Canada and Japan where the participatory project was led by occupational health teams, suggesting that occupational health practitioners can have an important role to play in participatory ergonomics projects.

  19. TESTING METHODS FOR MECHANICALLY IMPROVED SOILS: RELIABILITY AND VALIDITY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Petkovšek

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available A possibility of in-situ mechanical improvement for reducing the liquefaction potential of silty sands was investigated by using three different techniques: Vibratory Roller Compaction, Rapid Impact Compaction (RIC and Soil Mixing. Material properties at all test sites were investigated before and after improvement with the laboratory and the in situ tests (CPT, SDMT, DPSH B, static and dynamic load plate test, geohydraulic tests. Correlation between the results obtained by different test methods gave inconclusive answers.

  20. Improvements of soil quality for increased food production in Norway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Øygarden, Lillian; Klakegg, Ove; Børresen, Trond; Krogstad, Tore; Kjersti Uhlen, Anne

    2016-04-01

    Since the 1990ties, agricultural land in use in Norway has diminished and yields per hectare for cereals and forages have stagnated. An expert panel appointed to advice on how to increase Norwegian grain production emphasizes low profitability and poor soil quality as limiting factors. A White Paper from the Norwegian Government, Report No.9 (2011-2012), stated that the main goal for the agricultural sector is to increase food production proportional to the expected increase in population (20 % by 2030) in order to maintain self-sufficiency at the present level. This is the background for the interdisciplinary project AGROPRO "Agronomy for increased food production - Challenges and solutions" (2013 - 2017)" financed by the Norwegian research council. A mail goal is seeking possibilities for improvements in agronomic practices for increased and sustainable food production and to identify drivers and challenges for their implementation. Are the key to higher yields hidden in the soil? The paper present an overview of the research activities in the project and some results of the improvements of soil quality to minimize yield gap in cereal and forage production. Detailed new soil maps provide soil information on field scale of soil quality and the suitability for growing different crops like cereal production or vegetables. The detailed soil information is also beeing used for development and adaptation of the planning tool «Terranimo» to reduce risk of soil compaction.The farmer get available soil information for each field, provide information about the maschinery in use- tractors and equipment, tyres, pressure. The decision tool evaluate when the soil is suitable for tillage, calculate the risk of compaction for dry, moist and wet soil. New research data for compaction on Norwegian clay and silt soil are included. Climate change with wetter conditions gives challenges for growing cereals. The project is testing genetic variation in cereals for tolerance to water

  1. Improved Instrument for Detecting Water and Ice in Soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buehler, Martin; Chin, Keith; Keymeulen, Didler; McCann, Timothy; Seshadri, Suesh; Anderson, Robert

    2009-01-01

    An instrument measures electrical properties of relatively dry soils to determine their liquid water and/or ice contents. Designed as a prototype of instruments for measuring the liquid-water and ice contents of lunar and planetary soils, the apparatus could also be utilized for similar purposes in research and agriculture involving terrestrial desert soils and sands, and perhaps for measuring ice buildup on aircraft surfaces. This instrument is an improved version of the apparatus described in Measuring Low Concentrations of Liquid Water and Ice in Soil (NPO-41822), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 33, No. 2 (February 2009), page 22. The designs of both versions are based on the fact that the electrical behavior of a typical soil sample is well approximated by a network of resistors and capacitors in which resistances decrease and capacitances increase (and the magnitude and phase angle of impedance changes accordingly) with increasing water content. The previous version included an impedance spectrometer and a jar into which a sample of soil was placed. Four stainless-steel screws at the bottom of the jar were used as electrodes of a fourpoint impedance probe connected to the spectrometer. The present instrument does not include a sample jar and can be operated without acquiring or handling samples. Its impedance probe consists of a compact assembly of electrodes housed near the tip of a cylinder. The electrodes protrude slightly from the cylinder (see Figure 1). In preparation for measurements, the cylinder is simply pushed into the ground to bring the soil into contact with the electrodes.

  2. Improving the relationship between soil characteristics and metal bioavailability by using reactive fractions of soil parameters in calcareous soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Santiago-Martín, Ana; van Oort, Folkert; González, Concepción; Quintana, José R; Lafuente, Antonio L; Lamy, Isabelle

    2015-01-01

    The contribution of the nature instead of the total content of soil parameters relevant to metal bioavailability in lettuce was tested using a series of low-polluted Mediterranean agricultural calcareous soils offering natural gradients in the content and composition of carbonate, organic, and oxide fractions. Two datasets were compared by canonical ordination based on redundancy analysis: total concentrations (TC dataset) of main soil parameters (constituents, phases, or elements) involved in metal retention and bioavailability; and chemically defined reactive fractions of these parameters (RF dataset). The metal bioavailability patterns were satisfactorily explained only when the RF dataset was used, and the results showed that the proportion of crystalline Fe oxides, dissolved organic C, diethylene-triamine-pentaacetic acid (DTPA)-extractable Cu and Zn, and a labile organic pool accounted for 76% of the variance. In addition, 2 multipollution scenarios by metal spiking were tested that showed better relationships with the RF dataset than with the TC dataset (up to 17% more) and new reactive fractions involved. For Mediterranean calcareous soils, the use of reactive pools of soil parameters rather than their total contents improved the relationships between soil constituents and metal bioavailability. Such pool determinations should be systematically included in studies dealing with bioavailability or risk assessment. © 2014 SETAC.

  3. Evaluation in participatory design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bossen, Claus; Dindler, Christian; Iversen, Ole Sejer

    2016-01-01

    his paper focuses on evaluation in Participatory Design (PD), and especially upon how the central aims of mutual learning, empowerment, democracy and workplace quality have been assessed. We surveyed all Participatory Design Conference papers (1990-2014) and papers from special journal issues on PD...

  4. Participatory IT-support

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kanstrup, Anne Marie; Bertelsen, Pernille

    2006-01-01

    Beyond the initial phases of systems design Participatory Design has potentiality to include operation and maintenance of IT systems in organizations. The paper presents this argument through reports from case studies of local IT-support coined ‘participatory IT-support’. The paper presents...

  5. Strength Improvement of Clay Soil by Using Stone Powder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Sameer Abdulrasool

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Soil stabilization with stone powder is a good solution for the construction of subgrade for road way and railway lines, especially under the platforms and mostly in transition zones between embankments and rigid structures, where the mechanical properties of supporting soils are very influential. Stone powder often has a unique composition which justifies the need for research to study the feasibility of using this stone powder type for ground improvement applications. This paper presents results from a comprehensive laboratory study carried out to investigate the feasibility of using stone powder for improvement of engineering properties of clays. The stone powder contains bassanite (CaSO4. ½ H2O, and Calcite (CaCO3. Three percentages are used for stone powder (1%, 3% and 5% by dry weight of clay. Several tests are made to investigate the soil behavior after adding the stone powder (Atterberg limits, Standard Proctor density, Grain size distribution, Specific gravity, Unconfined Compressive test, and California bearing ratio test. Unconfined Compressive tests conducted at different curing. The samples are tested under both soaked and unsoaked condition. Chemical tests and X-ray diffraction analyses are also carried out. Stone powder reacts with clay producing decreasing in plasticity and The curves of grain size distribution are shifted to the coarse side as the stone powder percentage increase; the soil becomes more granular, and also with higher strength.

  6. Improvement in soil and sorghum health following the application of polyacrylate polymers to a Cd-contaminated soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guiwei, Q.; Varennes, A. de; Martins, L.L.; Mourato, M.P.; Cardoso, A.I.; Mota, A.M.; Pinto, A.P.; Goncalves, M.L.

    2010-01-01

    Contamination of soils with cadmium (Cd) is a serious global issue due to its high mobility and toxicity. We investigated the application of insoluble polyacrylate polymers to improve soil and plant health. Sorghum was grown in a Cd-contaminated sandy soil. Polyacrylate polymers at 0.2% (w/w) were added to half of the soil. Control soil without plants was also included in the experiment. Growth of sorghum was stimulated in the polymer-amended soil. The concentration of Cd in the shoots, and the activities of catalase and ascorbate peroxidase decreased in plants from polymer-amended soil compared with unamended control. The amount of CaCl 2 -extractable Cd in the polymer-amended soil was 55% of that in the unamended soil. The Cd extracted in sorghum shoots was 0.19 mg per plant grown on soil without polymer and 0.41 mg per plant grown on polymer-amended soil. The total amount of Cd removed from each pot corresponded to 1.5 and more than 6% of soil CaCl 2 -extractable Cd in unamended and polymer-amended soil, respectively. The activities of soil acid phosphatase, β-glucosidase, urease, protease and cellulase were greatest in polymer-amended soil with sorghum. In conclusion, the application of polyacrylate polymers to reduce the bioavailable Cd pool seems a promising method to enhance productivity and health of plants grown on Cd-contaminated soils.

  7. Engaging migrants and other stakeholders to improve communication in cross-cultural consultation in primary care: a theoretically informed participatory study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lionis, Christos; Papadakaki, Maria; Saridaki, Aristoula; Dowrick, Christopher; O'Donnell, Catherine A; Mair, Frances S; van den Muijsenbergh, Maria; Burns, Nicola; de Brún, Tomas; O'Reilly de Brún, Mary; van Weel-Baumgarten, Evelyn; Spiegel, Wolfgang; MacFarlane, Anne

    2016-07-22

    Guidelines and training initiatives (G/TIs) are available to support communication in cross-cultural consultations but are rarely implemented in routine practice in primary care. As part of the European Union RESTORE project, our objective was to explore whether the available G/TIs make sense to migrants and other key stakeholders and whether they could collectively choose G/TIs and engage in their implementation in primary care settings. As part of a comparative analysis of 5 linked qualitative case studies, we used purposeful and snowball sampling to recruit migrants and other key stakeholders in primary care settings in Austria, England, Greece, Ireland and the Netherlands. A total of 78 stakeholders participated in the study (Austria 15, England 9, Ireland 11, Greece 16, Netherlands 27), covering a range of groups (migrants, general practitioners, nurses, administrative staff, interpreters, health service planners). We combined Normalisation Process Theory (NPT) and Participatory Learning and Action (PLA) research to conduct a series of PLA style focus groups. Using a standardised protocol, stakeholders' discussions about a set of G/TIs were recorded on PLA commentary charts and their selection process was recorded through a PLA direct-ranking technique. We performed inductive and deductive thematic analysis to investigate sensemaking and engagement with the G/TIs. The need for new ways of working was strongly endorsed by most stakeholders. Stakeholders considered that they were the right people to drive the work forward and were keen to enrol others to support the implementation work. This was evidenced by the democratic selection by stakeholders in each setting of one G/TI as a local implementation project. This theoretically informed participatory approach used across 5 countries with diverse healthcare systems could be used in other settings to establish positive conditions for the start of implementation journeys for G/TIs to improve healthcare for

  8. Lasting effects of soil health improvements with management changes in cotton-based cropping systems in a sandy soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    The soil microbial component is essential for sustainable agricultural systems and soil health. This study evaluated the lasting impacts of 5 years of soil health improvements from alternative cropping systems compared to intensively tilled continuous cotton (Cont. Ctn) in a low organic matter sandy...

  9. Biochar amendment improves soil fertility and productivity of mulberry plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faruque Ahmed

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Biochar has the potential to improve soil fertility and crop productivity. A field experiment was carried out at the experimental field of Bangladesh Sericulture Research and Training Institute (BSRTI, Rajshahi, Bangladesh. The objective of this study was to examine the effect of biochar on soil properties, growth, yield and foliar disease incidence of mulberry plant. The study consisted of 6 treatments: control, basal dose of NPK, rice husk biochar, mineral enriched biochar, basal dose + rice husk biochar and basal dose + mineral enriched biochar. Growth parameters such as node/meter, total branch number/plant, total leaf yield/hectare/year were significantly increased in basal dose + mineral enriched biochar treated plot in second year compared with the other fertilizer treatments. In second year, the total leaf yield/hectare/year were also 142.1% and 115.9% higher in combined application of basal dose + mineral enriched biochar and basal dose + rice husk biochar, respectively, than the control treatment. The soil properties such as organic matter, phosphorus, sulphur and zinc percentage were significantly increased with both the (mineral enriched and rice husk biochar treated soil applied with or without recommended basal dose of NPK than the control and only the recommended basal dose of NPK, respectively. Further, the lowest incidences of tukra (6.4%, powdery mildew (10.4% and leaf spot (7.6% disease were observed in second year under mineral enriched biochar treated plot than the others. The findings revealed that utilization of biochar has positive effect on the improvement of soil fertility and productivity as well as disease suppression of mulberry plant.

  10. Improvement of poor subgrade soils using cement kiln dust

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Mancy Mosa

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Construction of pavements layers on subgrade with excellent to good properties reduces the thickness of the layers and consequently reduces the initial and maintenance cost of highways and vice versa. However, construction of pavements on poor subgrade is unavoidable due to several constrains. Improvement of subgrade properties using traditional additives such as lime and Portland cement adds supplementary costs. Therefore, using by-products in this domain involves technical, economic, and environmental advantages. Cement kiln dust (CKD is generated in huge quantities as a by-product material in Portland cement plants. Therefore, it can be considered as an excellent alternative in this domain. In Iraq, Portland cement plants generate about 350000 tons of CKD annually which is available for free. Therefore, Iraq can be adopted as a case study. This paper covers using CKD to improve the properties of poor subgrade soils based on series of California Bearing Ration (CBR tests on sets of untreated samples and samples treated with different doses of CKD in combination with different curing periods to investigate their effects on soil properties. The results exhibited that adding 20% of CKD with curing for 14 days increases the CBR value from 3.4% for untreated soil to 48% for treated soil; it, also, decreases the swelling ratio. To determine the effects of using this dose under the mentioned curing period on the designed thicknesses of pavements layers, a case study was adopted. The case study results exhibited that treatment of the subgrade soil by 20% of CKD with curing for 14 days reduces the cost of the pavements by $25.875 per square meter.

  11. Microbial Biofertilizer Decreases Nicotine Content by Improving Soil Nitrogen Supply.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Cui; Chen, Anwei; Chen, Guiqiu; Li, Huanke; Guan, Song; He, Jianmin

    2017-01-01

    Biofertilizers have been widely used in many countries for their benefit to soil biological and physicochemical properties. A new microbial biofertilizer containing Phanerochaete chrysosporium and Bacillus thuringiensis was prepared to decrease nicotine content in tobacco leaves by regulating soil nitrogen supply. Soil NO 3 - -N, NH 4 + -N, nitrogen supply-related enzyme activities, and nitrogen accumulation in plant leaves throughout the growing period were investigated to explore the mechanism of nicotine reduction. The experimental results indicated that biofertilizer can reduce the nicotine content in tobacco leaves, with a maximum decrement of 16-18 % in mature upper leaves. In the meantime, the total nitrogen in mature lower and middle leaves increased with the application of biofertilizer, while an opposite result was observed in upper leaves. Protein concentration in leaves had similar fluctuation to that of total nitrogen in response to biofertilizer. NO 3 - -N content and nitrate reductase activity in biofertilizer-amended soil increased by 92.3 and 42.2 %, respectively, compared to those in the control, whereas the NH 4 + -N and urease activity decreased by 37.8 and 29.3 %, respectively. Nitrogen uptake was improved in the early growing stage, but this phenomenon was not observed during the late growth period. Nicotine decrease is attributing to the adjustment of biofertilizer in soil nitrogen supply and its uptake in tobacco, which result in changes of nitrogen content as well as its distribution in tobacco leaves. The application of biofertilizer containing P. chrysosporium and B. thuringiensis can reduce the nicotine content and improve tobacco quality, which may provide some useful information for tobacco cultivation.

  12. Integrated double mulching practices optimizes soil temperature and improves soil water utilization in arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Wen; Feng, Fuxue; Zhao, Cai; Yu, Aizhong; Hu, Falong; Chai, Qiang; Gan, Yantai; Guo, Yao

    2016-09-01

    Water shortage threatens agricultural sustainability in many arid and semiarid areas of the world. It is unknown whether improved water conservation practices can be developed to alleviate this issue while increasing crop productivity. In this study, we developed a "double mulching" system, i.e., plastic film coupled with straw mulch, integrated together with intensified strip intercropping. We determined (i) the responses of soil evaporation and moisture conservation to the integrated double mulching system and (ii) the change of soil temperature during key plant growth stages under the integrated systems. Experiments were carried out in northwest China in 2009 to 2011. Results show that wheat-maize strip intercropping in combination with plastic film and straw covering on the soil surface increased soil moisture (mm) by an average of 3.8 % before sowing, 5.3 % during the wheat and maize co-growth period, 4.4 % after wheat harvest, and 4.9 % after maize harvest, compared to conventional practice (control). The double mulching decreased total evapotranspiration of the two intercrops by an average of 4.6 % ( P < 0.05), compared to control. An added feature was that the double mulching system decreased soil temperature in the top 10-cm depth by 1.26 to 1.31 °C in the strips of the cool-season wheat, and by 1.31 to 1.51 °C in the strips of the warm-season maize through the 2 years. Soil temperature of maize strips higher as 1.25 to 1.94 °C than that of wheat strips in the top 10-cm soil depth under intercropping with the double mulching system; especially higher as 1.58 to 2.11 °C under intercropping with the conventional tillage; this allows the two intercrops to grow in a well "collaborative" status under the double mulching system during their co-growth period. The improvement of soil moisture and the optimization of soil temperature for the two intercrops allow us to conclude that wheat-maize intensification with the double mulching system can be used as an

  13. Engaging Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) clinical staff to lead practice improvement: the PICU Participatory Action Research Project (PICU-PAR)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background Despite considerable efforts, engaging staff to lead quality improvement activities in practice settings is a persistent challenge. At British Columbia Children’s Hospital (BCCH), the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) undertook a new phase of quality improvement actions based on the Community of Practice (CoP) model with Participatory Action Research (PAR). This approach aims to mobilize the PICU ‘community’ as a whole with a focus on practice; namely, to create a ‘community of practice’ to support reflection, learning, and innovation in everyday work. Methodology An iterative two-stage PAR process using mixed methods has been developed among the PICU CoP to describe the environment (stage 1) and implement specific interventions (stage 2). Stage 1 is ethnographic description of the unit’s care practice. Surveys, interviews, focus groups, and direct observations describe the clinical staff’s experiences and perspectives around bedside care and quality endeavors in the PICU. Contrasts and comparisons across participants, time and activities help understanding the PICU culture and experience. Stage 2 is a succession of PAR spirals, using results from phase 1 to set up specific interventions aimed at building the staff’s capability to conduct QI projects while acquiring appropriate technical skills and leadership capacity (primary outcome). Team communication, information, and interaction will be enhanced through a knowledge exchange (KE) and a wireless network of iPADs. Relevance Lack of leadership at the staff level in order to improve daily practice is a recognized challenge that faces many hospitals. We believe that the PAR approach within a highly motivated CoP is a sound method to create the social dynamic and cultural context within which clinical teams can grow, reflect, innovate and feel proud to better serve patients. PMID:24401288

  14. Engaging pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) clinical staff to lead practice improvement: the PICU participatory action research project (PICU-PAR).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collet, Jean-Paul; Skippen, Peter W; Mosavianpour, Mir Kaber; Pitfield, Alexander; Chakraborty, Bubli; Hunte, Garth; Lindstrom, Ronald; Kissoon, Niranjan; McKellin, William H

    2014-01-08

    Despite considerable efforts, engaging staff to lead quality improvement activities in practice settings is a persistent challenge. At British Columbia Children's Hospital (BCCH), the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) undertook a new phase of quality improvement actions based on the Community of Practice (CoP) model with Participatory Action Research (PAR). This approach aims to mobilize the PICU 'community' as a whole with a focus on practice; namely, to create a 'community of practice' to support reflection, learning, and innovation in everyday work. An iterative two-stage PAR process using mixed methods has been developed among the PICU CoP to describe the environment (stage 1) and implement specific interventions (stage 2). Stage 1 is ethnographic description of the unit's care practice. Surveys, interviews, focus groups, and direct observations describe the clinical staff's experiences and perspectives around bedside care and quality endeavors in the PICU. Contrasts and comparisons across participants, time and activities help understanding the PICU culture and experience. Stage 2 is a succession of PAR spirals, using results from phase 1 to set up specific interventions aimed at building the staff's capability to conduct QI projects while acquiring appropriate technical skills and leadership capacity (primary outcome). Team communication, information, and interaction will be enhanced through a knowledge exchange (KE) and a wireless network of iPADs. Lack of leadership at the staff level in order to improve daily practice is a recognized challenge that faces many hospitals. We believe that the PAR approach within a highly motivated CoP is a sound method to create the social dynamic and cultural context within which clinical teams can grow, reflect, innovate and feel proud to better serve patients.

  15. An interdisciplinary approach towards improved understanding of soil deformation during compaction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Keller, T.; Lamandé, Mathieu; Peth, S.

    2013-01-01

    and validation of new soil compaction models. The integration of concepts underlying dynamic processes that modify soil pore spaces and bulk properties will improve the understanding of how soil management affect vital soil mechanical, hydraulic and ecological functions supporting plant growth.......Soil compaction not only reduces available pore volume in which fluids are stored, but it alters the arrangement of soil constituents and pore geometry, thereby adversely impacting fluid transport and a range of soil ecological functions. Quantitative understanding of stress transmission...... and deformation processes in arable soils remains limited. Yet such knowledge is essential for better predictions of effects of soil management practices such as agricultural field traffic on soil functioning. Concepts and theory used in agricultural soil mechanics (soil compaction and soil tillage) are often...

  16. Participatory design based research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dau, Susanne; Bach Jensen, Louise; Falk, Lars

    This poster reveal how participatory design based research by the use of a CoED inspired creative process can be used for designing solutions to problems regarding students study activities outside campus.......This poster reveal how participatory design based research by the use of a CoED inspired creative process can be used for designing solutions to problems regarding students study activities outside campus....

  17. Reduction of soil tare by improved uprooting of sugar beet : a soil dynamic approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vermeulen, G.D.

    2001-01-01

    The relative amount of soil in sugar beet lots, called soil tare, should be reduced to curtail the cost and negative aspects of soil tare. Highest soil tare occurs in beet lots harvested out of wet clay soil. The main problem is that commonly-used share lifters press the soil against the

  18. Synthesis of research on Biogrout soil improvement method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zsolt KALTENBACHER

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Because of the great rhythm of city developments, there is a great need for a new cost effective method for ground improvement. In this paper, a few chemical improvement technologies and a new biological ground improvement method called Biogrout are discussed. The method, used in the paper for a Sarmatian sand in Transylvania (Feleac locality implies using microorganisms as catalysts in order to induce a microbial carbonate precipitation (MICP to increase the strength and stiffness of cohesionless soils. For this calcium based procedure, the bacteria Sporosarcina Pasteurii (DSMZ 33 is used, while for the treatment solution urea (CO(NH22 and calcium chloride (CaCl2 are used. The study presents the triaxial testing of sand probes treated with Biogrout and the comparison of results obtained with untreated sand probes.

  19. Influence of land improvement on soil oxidation. Inverkan av grundfoerbaettring paa markens syrehalt

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kowalik, P.J.

    1985-01-01

    The paper presents the theoretical analysis of influence of the land reclamation on soil oxidation. Examination was carried out on dependencies existing among soil moisture content, respiratory activity of the soil, absolute soil porosity, gas-filled soil porosity, coeffficient of oxygen diffusion in soil air and soil liquid, oxygen concentration in soil air and in soil water, oxygen diffusion flux, oxygen diffusion rate and the depth of zone of aeration in soil profile. Some remarks about the influence of soil oxidation on root growth and morphology of soil profile were presented too. Results of own empirical investigations and similar data from literature verify theoretical ideas pointed out in the paper. The methods and results of own measurements of ODR (oxygen diffusion rate) has been presented in detail. The research explains the relationship between soil moisture content and soil oxidation. As a result of the analysis there have been proposed such methods of land improvement that the water and oxygen demands of plant roots and microorganisms would be satisfying. The paper proposes a new method of account of the so-called anaerobic soil moisture content. This moisture should be the highest for irrigation practice and more or less lowest for drainage of soil water. Soil moisture a little lower than anarobic soil water content is enough for warranting the sufficient soil aeration during drainage and irrigation activity. With 82 refs.

  20. Participatory Research: New Approaches to the Research to Practice Dilemma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Luanna H.; Park, Hyun-Sook; Grenot-Scheyer, Marquita; Schwartz, Ilene; Harry, Beth

    1998-01-01

    This article presents a rationale for incorporating elements of participatory research approaches into intervention research intended to improve practice. After an overview of the research-to-practice problem, it illustrates how the incorporation of participatory research approaches applied to various decision points can enhance the construction…

  1. Soil map disaggregation improved by soil-landscape relationships, area-proportional sampling and random forest implementation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller, Anders Bjørn; Malone, Brendan P.; Odgers, Nathan

    implementation generally improved the algorithm’s ability to predict the correct soil class. The implementation of soil-landscape relationships and area-proportional sampling generally increased the calculation time, while the random forest implementation reduced the calculation time. In the most successful......Detailed soil information is often needed to support agricultural practices, environmental protection and policy decisions. Several digital approaches can be used to map soil properties based on field observations. When soil observations are sparse or missing, an alternative approach...... is to disaggregate existing conventional soil maps. At present, the DSMART algorithm represents the most sophisticated approach for disaggregating conventional soil maps (Odgers et al., 2014). The algorithm relies on classification trees trained from resampled points, which are assigned classes according...

  2. Development of Nutrient Management Strategies for ASAL using Participatory Learning and Action Research (PLAR) Approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nguluu, S.N.

    2002-01-01

    Participatory diagnosis of soil fertility problems and subsequent experimentation was carried out at Kibwezi Division, Makweni district, using Participatory learning and Action Research (PLAR) methodologies. results of the soil analysis showed that nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and carbon (C) were the most limiting nutrients to the crop production. Farmers were excited to learn how to identify deficiency symptoms of N and P by looking at plant leaves. Farmers also identified and implemented practical options under rain-fed and irrigated conditions for solving the soil fertility problems such as use of manure, fertilisers or a combination of both. Fertiliser application at the rate of 40N + 40P 2 O 5 ha -1 and 60N + 60P 2 O 5 ha -1 produced significantly yield responses under rain-fed conditions. However, application of 20 t ha -1 and 40 t ha -1 of farm yard manure had no effect on grain yield of maize. Maize gross margins were positive with increasing fertilizer application. Similarly, fresh yields of Chili showed marked yield increasing with increasing fertility conditions. In contrast, onions and tomatoes showed a corresponding smaller yield increase with fertility improvement. Chili, onions and tomatoes had positive gross margins as nutrient application was increased indicating that benefit was higher with increasing fertiliser inputs. The PLAR methodology provided farmers with knowledge and skills that helped them to change their attitude towards soil fertility improvement interventions

  3. Participatory women's groups and counselling through home visits to improve child growth in rural eastern India: protocol for a cluster randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nair, Nirmala; Tripathy, Prasanta; Sachdev, Harshpal S; Bhattacharyya, Sanghita; Gope, Rajkumar; Gagrai, Sumitra; Rath, Shibanand; Rath, Suchitra; Sinha, Rajesh; Roy, Swati Sarbani; Shewale, Suhas; Singh, Vijay; Srivastava, Aradhana; Pradhan, Hemanta; Costello, Anthony; Copas, Andrew; Skordis-Worrall, Jolene; Haghparast-Bidgoli, Hassan; Saville, Naomi; Prost, Audrey

    2015-04-15

    Child stunting (low height-for-age) is a marker of chronic undernutrition and predicts children's subsequent physical and cognitive development. Around one third of the world's stunted children live in India. Our study aims to assess the impact, cost-effectiveness, and scalability of a community intervention with a government-proposed community-based worker to improve growth in children under two in rural India. The study is a cluster randomised controlled trial in two rural districts of Jharkhand and Odisha (eastern India). The intervention tested involves a community-based worker carrying out two activities: (a) one home visit to all pregnant women in the third trimester, followed by subsequent monthly home visits to all infants aged 0-24 months to support appropriate feeding, infection control, and care-giving; (b) a monthly women's group meeting using participatory learning and action to catalyse individual and community action for maternal and child health and nutrition. Both intervention and control clusters also receive an intervention to strengthen Village Health Sanitation and Nutrition Committees. The unit of randomisation is a purposively selected cluster of approximately 1000 population. A total of 120 geographical clusters covering an estimated population of 121,531 were randomised to two trial arms: 60 clusters in the intervention arm receive home visits, group meetings, and support to Village Health Sanitation and Nutrition Committees; 60 clusters in the control arm receive support to Committees only. The study participants are pregnant women identified in the third trimester of pregnancy and their children (n = 2520). Mothers and their children are followed up at seven time points: during pregnancy, within 72 hours of delivery, and at 3, 6, 9, 12 and 18 months after birth. The trial's primary outcome is children's mean length-for-age Z scores at 18 months. Secondary outcomes include wasting and underweight at all time points, birth weight, growth

  4. Improving adherence to ante-retroviral treatment for people with harmful alcohol use in Kariobangi, Kenya through participatory research and action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Othieno Caleb J

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Harmful alcohol use has been linked to the spread of HIV in Kenya. It also adversely affects those on antiretroviral (ARV treatment through poor compliance. This study using participatory research and action (PRA methods sought to understand factors related to alcohol abuse and non-adherence and to formulate appropriate interventions in a sample of people living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHA who were also abusing alcohol, at Kariobangi in Nairobi, Kenya. Methods Entry into the community was gained through previous PRA work in that community and PLWHA were recruited through snowballing. Working together with the community members, the researchers explored the participants’ understanding of alcohol use problem, its effects on compliance to ARV treatment and discussed possible action areas through PRA techniques that included focus group and market place discussions; visual aids such as spider diagrams, community mapping and ranking. Follow-up meetings were held to discuss the progress. Results By the final meeting, 67 PLWHA and 19 community members had been recruited. Through discussions, misconceptions regarding alcohol use were identified. It emerged that alcohol abuse was poorly recognised among both the community and health workers. Screening for alcohol use was not routinely done and protocols for managing alcohol related disorders were not available at the local health centres providing ARVs. The study participants identified improving communication, psychoeducation and screening for alcohol use as possible action areas. Poverty was identified as a major problem but the interventions to mitigate this were not easy to implement. Conclusion We propose that PRA could be useful in improving communication between the health workers and the clients attending primary health care (PHC facilities and can be applied to strengthen involvement of support groups and community health workers in follow up and counselling. Integrating these

  5. Improving geotechnical properties of clayey soil using polymer material

    OpenAIRE

    Karim Hussein; Al-Soudany Kawther

    2018-01-01

    This study illustrates the application of polymer material for clayey soil stabilization. The article will focus on studying the strength behavior of the clayey soils reinforced with homogenously polymer fiber. In the current research, “polypropylene” was selected as polymer material to reinforce the natural clay soil. This polymer fiber was added to the clayey soil with four different percentages of (0, 1.5, 3, and 5%) by weight of soil. Various tests with different polymer contents were per...

  6. Improvement of the soil nitrogen content and maize growth by earthworms and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in soils polluted by oxytetracycline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Jia; Wang, Chong; Ji, Dingge

    2016-11-15

    Interactions between earthworms (Eisenia fetida) and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (Rhizophagus intraradices, AM fungi) have been suggested to improve the maize nitrogen (N) content and biomass and were studied in soils polluted by oxytetracycline (OTC). Maize was planted and amended with AMF and/or earthworms (E) in the soil with low (1mgkg(-1) soil DM) or high (100mgkg(-1) soil DM) amounts of OTC pollution in comparison to soil without OTC. The root colonization, shoot and root biomass, shoot and root N contents, soil nitrogen forms, ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) and archaea (AOA) were measured at harvest. The results indicated that OTC decreased maize shoot and root biomass (psoil urease activity and AOB and AOA abundance, which resulted in a lower N availability for maize roots and shoots. There was a significant interaction between earthworms and AM fungi on the urease activity in soil polluted by OTC (ppolluted soil by increasing the urease activity and relieving the stress from OTC on the soil N cycle. AM fungi and earthworms interactively increased maize shoot and root biomass (ppolluted soils through their regulation of the urease activity and the abundance of ammonia oxidizers, resulting in different soil NH4(+)-N and NO3(-)-N contents, which may contribute to the N content of maize shoots and roots. Earthworms and AM fungi could be used as an efficient method to relieve the OTC stress in agro-ecosystems. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. A framework of connections between soil and people can help improve sustainability of the food system and soil functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ball, Bruce C; Hargreaves, Paul R; Watson, Christine A

    2018-04-01

    Globally soil quality and food security continue to decrease indicating that agriculture and the food system need to adapt. Improving connection to the soil by knowledge exchange can help achieve this. We propose a framework of three types of connections that allow the targeting of appropriate messages to different groups of people. Direct connection by, for example, handling soil develops soil awareness for management that can be fostered by farmers joining groups on soil-focused farming such as organic farming or no-till. Indirect connections between soil, food and ecosystem services can inform food choices and environmental awareness in the public and can be promoted by, for example, gardening, education and art. Temporal connection revealed from past usage of soil helps to bring awareness to policy workers of the need for the long-term preservation of soil quality for environmental conservation. The understanding of indirect and temporal connections can be helped by comparing them with the operations of the networks of soil organisms and porosity that sustain soil fertility and soil functions.

  8. Relational Expertise in Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dindler, Christian; Iversen, Ole Sejer

    2014-01-01

    This paper positions relation expertise as a core competence in participatory design. It is an expertise that demands the participatory designer to stimulate the emergence of loosely coupled knotworks, and obtain symbiotic agreement between participants disregarding their professional and social...

  9. Modeling soil water content for vegetation modeling improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cianfrani, Carmen; Buri, Aline; Zingg, Barbara; Vittoz, Pascal; Verrecchia, Eric; Guisan, Antoine

    2016-04-01

    Soil water content (SWC) is known to be important for plants as it affects the physiological processes regulating plant growth. Therefore, SWC controls plant distribution over the Earth surface, ranging from deserts and grassland to rain forests. Unfortunately, only a few data on SWC are available as its measurement is very time consuming and costly and needs specific laboratory tools. The scarcity of SWC measurements in geographic space makes it difficult to model and spatially project SWC over larger areas. In particular, it prevents its inclusion in plant species distribution model (SDMs) as predictor. The aims of this study were, first, to test a new methodology allowing problems of the scarcity of SWC measurements to be overpassed and second, to model and spatially project SWC in order to improve plant SDMs with the inclusion of SWC parameter. The study was developed in four steps. First, SWC was modeled by measuring it at 10 different pressures (expressed in pF and ranging from pF=0 to pF=4.2). The different pF represent different degrees of soil water availability for plants. An ensemble of bivariate models was built to overpass the problem of having only a few SWC measurements (n = 24) but several predictors to include in the model. Soil texture (clay, silt, sand), organic matter (OM), topographic variables (elevation, aspect, convexity), climatic variables (precipitation) and hydrological variables (river distance, NDWI) were used as predictors. Weighted ensemble models were built using only bivariate models with adjusted-R2 > 0.5 for each SWC at different pF. The second step consisted in running plant SDMs including modeled SWC jointly with the conventional topo-climatic variable used for plant SDMs. Third, SDMs were only run using the conventional topo-climatic variables. Finally, comparing the models obtained in the second and third steps allowed assessing the additional predictive power of SWC in plant SDMs. SWC ensemble models remained very good, with

  10. Long-term manure applications improve soil productivity and sustain high crop yield for acidic red soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Intensive use of chemical nitrogen (N) fertilizers has resulted in severely reduced productivity of red soils (Ferralic Cambisol) due to accelerated acidification. Manure has been shown to be effective in improving soil productivity by preventing or reversing the acidification process, but little in...

  11. Utilization of maize cob biochar and rice husk charcoal as soil amendments for improving acid soil fertility and productivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nurhidayati

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The decline in soil fertility in agricultural land is a major problem that causes a decrease in the production of food crops. One of the causes of the decline in soil fertility is declining soil pH that caused the decline in the availability of nutrients in the soil. This study aimed to assess the influence of alternative liming materials derived from maize cob biochar and rice husk charcoal compared to conventional lime to improve soil pH, soil nutrient availability and maize production. The experiment used a factorial complete randomized design which consisting of two factors. The first factor is the type of soil amendment which consists of three levels (calcite lime, rice husk charcoal and cob maize biochar. The second factor is the application rates of the soil amendment consisted of three levels (3, 6 and 9 t/ha and one control treatment (without soil amendment. The results of this study showed that the application of various soil amendment increased soil pH, which the pH increase of the lime application was relatively more stable over time compared to biochar and husk charcoal. The average of the soil pH increased for each soil amendment by 23% (lime, 20% (rice husk charcoal and 23% (biochar as compared with control. The increase in soil pH can increase the availability of soil N, P and K. The greatest influence of soil pH on nutrient availability was shown by the relationship between soil pH and K nutrient availability with R2 = 0.712, while for the N by R2 = 0.462 and for the P by R2 = 0.245. The relationship between the availability of N and maize yield showed a linear equation. While the relationship between the availability of P and K with the maize yield showed a quadratic equation. The highest maize yield was found in the application of biochar and rice husk charcoal with a dose of 6-9 t/ha. The results of this study suggested that biochar and husk charcoal could be used as an alternative liming material in improving acid soil

  12. Promotion of Leguminous Plants and Organic Inputs for Improving Soil Productivity in smallholder Farms of Central Highlands of Kenya

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mugwe, J.

    2002-01-01

    Declining soil and productivity is a major problem facing smallholder farmers in the central highlands of Kenya.This decline is caused by continuous cultivation of soils without adequate addition of external inputs in form of manure and fertilizers. Use of inorganic fertilisers is low due to high costs that are beyond the reach of majority of smallholder farmers. A multidisciplinary on-farm participatory was therefore initiated in the main maize growing areas of the central highlands of Kenya in 2000 with the main objective of addressing this problem. Results after four cropping seasons indicate that organic residues such as leguminous shrubs (Leucaena trichandra and calliandra calothrysus), herbaceous legumes (Crotalaria ochroleuca and Mucuna pruriens), Tithonia diversifolia, farm yard manure alone or with combination of 30 kg N ha -1 from inorganic sources can be used effectively to improve maize performance in the region.Over the four seasons under study, these organic residues gave an average mean maize grain yield in the range of 3.4 to 4.0 t ha -1 which is more than 1.0 t ha -1 that farmers in the area get from their farms. when the farmers were asked to select technologies that they wanted to test, majority selected tithonia, calliandra, leucaena and farm yard manure. This was attributed to availability of these organic resources at the farm level as tithonia could be cut along the roadsides and more than 80% of the farmers' own livestock. These results through preliminary, indicate that organic resources being tested in this trial are effective in improving maize yields and farmers are willing to try these on their farms

  13. Potential for Increasing Soil Nutrient Availability via Soil Organic Matter Improvement Using Pseudo Panel Data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chavez Clemente, M.D.; Berentsen, P.B.M.; Oenema, O.; Oude Lansink, A.G.J.M.

    2014-01-01

    Fixed and random effect models were applied to a pseudo-panel data built of soil analysis reports from tobacco farms to analyze relationships between soil characteristics like soil organic matter (SOM) and soil nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P) and potassium (K) and to explore the potential for

  14. [Mechanism of nutrient preservation and supply by soil and its regulation. IV. Fertility regulation and improvement of brown earth type vegetable garden soil and their essence].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, L; Zhou, L

    2000-08-01

    Pot experiment studies on the fertility regulation and improvement of fertile and infertile brown earth type vegetable garden soils and their functionary essence show that under conditions of taking different soil fertility improvement measures, the nutrient contents in fertile and infertile soils were not always higher than the controls, but the aggregation densities of soil microaggregates were increased, and the proportion of different microaggregates was more rational. There was no significant relationship between soil productivity and soil microaggregates proportion. It is proved that the essence of soil fertility improvement consists in the ultimate change of the preservation and supply capacities of soil nutrients, and the proportion of soil microaggregates could be an integrative index to evaluate the level of soil fertility and the efficiency of soil improvement.

  15. Improvements on mapping soil liquefaction at a regional scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Jing

    Earthquake induced soil liquefaction is an important secondary hazard during earthquakes and can lead to significant damage to infrastructure. Mapping liquefaction hazard is important in both planning for earthquake events and guiding relief efforts by positioning resources once the events have occurred. This dissertation addresses two aspects of liquefaction hazard mapping at a regional scale including 1) predictive liquefaction hazard mapping and 2) post-liquefaction cataloging. First, current predictive hazard liquefaction mapping relies on detailed geologic maps and geotechnical data, which are not always available in at-risk regions. This dissertation improves the predictive liquefaction hazard mapping by the development and validation of geospatial liquefaction models (Chapter 2 and 3) that predict liquefaction extent and are appropriate for global application. The geospatial liquefaction models are developed using logistic regression from a liquefaction database consisting of the data from 27 earthquake events from six countries. The model that performs best over the entire dataset includes peak ground velocity (PGV), VS30, distance to river, distance to coast, and precipitation. The model that performs best over the noncoastal dataset includes PGV, VS30, water table depth, distance to water body, and precipitation. Second, post-earthquake liquefaction cataloging historically relies on field investigation that is often limited by time and expense, and therefore results in limited and incomplete liquefaction inventories. This dissertation improves the post-earthquake cataloging by the development and validation of a remote sensing-based method that can be quickly applied over a broad region after an earthquake and provide a detailed map of liquefaction surface effects (Chapter 4). Our method uses the optical satellite images before and after an earthquake event from the WorldView-2 satellite with 2 m spatial resolution and eight spectral bands. Our method

  16. Defining stakeholder involvement in participatory design processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vink, P.; Imada, A.S.; Zink, K.J.

    2008-01-01

    A participatory approach could be used to implement work place or organizational improvements. However, the question is which participants should be involved and how. In this paper the theoretical involvement in different steps of a linear stepwise approach is described and compared with the latest

  17. Improved Soil Erosion and Sediment Transport in GSSHA

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-08-01

    the USLE soil erodibility factor (0-1), soil cropping factor (0-1) and conservation factor (0-1) in the development by Julien (1995). The use of one...factor K represents a departure from Julien (1995), who used all three factors from the Universal Soil Loss Equation ( USLE ). This departure is justi...runoff using a research-quality data set. BACKGROUND: GSSHA simulates overland soil erosion and outputs erosion and deposition for any size class of

  18. Using soil water sensors to improve irrigation management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irrigation water management has to do with the appropriate application of water to soils, in terms of amounts, rates, and timing to satisfy crop water demands while protecting the soil and water resources from degradation. In this regard, sensors can be used to monitor the soil water status; and som...

  19. Improvement of strength characteristics of lateritic sub-grade soil ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Journal of Applied Sciences and Environmental Management ... Abstract. This paper presents the results of investigation of the behavior of pavement subgrade soil stabilized with shredded polyethylene waste. ... Keywords: Lateritic soil, High density polyethylene (HDPE) waste, Pavement thickness, Sub-grade soil ...

  20. Improving Estimations of Spatial Distribution of Soil Respiration Using the Bayesian Maximum Entropy Algorithm and Soil Temperature as Auxiliary Data.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junguo Hu

    Full Text Available Soil respiration inherently shows strong spatial variability. It is difficult to obtain an accurate characterization of soil respiration with an insufficient number of monitoring points. However, it is expensive and cumbersome to deploy many sensors. To solve this problem, we proposed employing the Bayesian Maximum Entropy (BME algorithm, using soil temperature as auxiliary information, to study the spatial distribution of soil respiration. The BME algorithm used the soft data (auxiliary information effectively to improve the estimation accuracy of the spatiotemporal distribution of soil respiration. Based on the functional relationship between soil temperature and soil respiration, the BME algorithm satisfactorily integrated soil temperature data into said spatial distribution. As a means of comparison, we also applied the Ordinary Kriging (OK and Co-Kriging (Co-OK methods. The results indicated that the root mean squared errors (RMSEs and absolute values of bias for both Day 1 and Day 2 were the lowest for the BME method, thus demonstrating its higher estimation accuracy. Further, we compared the performance of the BME algorithm coupled with auxiliary information, namely soil temperature data, and the OK method without auxiliary information in the same study area for 9, 21, and 37 sampled points. The results showed that the RMSEs for the BME algorithm (0.972 and 1.193 were less than those for the OK method (1.146 and 1.539 when the number of sampled points was 9 and 37, respectively. This indicates that the former method using auxiliary information could reduce the required number of sampling points for studying spatial distribution of soil respiration. Thus, the BME algorithm, coupled with soil temperature data, can not only improve the accuracy of soil respiration spatial interpolation but can also reduce the number of sampling points.

  1. Improving Estimations of Spatial Distribution of Soil Respiration Using the Bayesian Maximum Entropy Algorithm and Soil Temperature as Auxiliary Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Junguo; Zhou, Jian; Zhou, Guomo; Luo, Yiqi; Xu, Xiaojun; Li, Pingheng; Liang, Junyi

    2016-01-01

    Soil respiration inherently shows strong spatial variability. It is difficult to obtain an accurate characterization of soil respiration with an insufficient number of monitoring points. However, it is expensive and cumbersome to deploy many sensors. To solve this problem, we proposed employing the Bayesian Maximum Entropy (BME) algorithm, using soil temperature as auxiliary information, to study the spatial distribution of soil respiration. The BME algorithm used the soft data (auxiliary information) effectively to improve the estimation accuracy of the spatiotemporal distribution of soil respiration. Based on the functional relationship between soil temperature and soil respiration, the BME algorithm satisfactorily integrated soil temperature data into said spatial distribution. As a means of comparison, we also applied the Ordinary Kriging (OK) and Co-Kriging (Co-OK) methods. The results indicated that the root mean squared errors (RMSEs) and absolute values of bias for both Day 1 and Day 2 were the lowest for the BME method, thus demonstrating its higher estimation accuracy. Further, we compared the performance of the BME algorithm coupled with auxiliary information, namely soil temperature data, and the OK method without auxiliary information in the same study area for 9, 21, and 37 sampled points. The results showed that the RMSEs for the BME algorithm (0.972 and 1.193) were less than those for the OK method (1.146 and 1.539) when the number of sampled points was 9 and 37, respectively. This indicates that the former method using auxiliary information could reduce the required number of sampling points for studying spatial distribution of soil respiration. Thus, the BME algorithm, coupled with soil temperature data, can not only improve the accuracy of soil respiration spatial interpolation but can also reduce the number of sampling points.

  2. Using Agricultural Residue Biochar to Improve Soil Quality of Desert Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunhe Zhang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available A laboratory study was conducted to test the effects of biochars made from different feedstocks on soil quality indicators of arid soils. Biochars were produced from four locally-available agricultural residues: pecan shells, pecan orchard prunings, cotton gin trash, and yard waste, using a lab-scale pyrolyzer operated at 450 °C under a nitrogen environment and slow pyrolysis conditions. Two local arid soils used for crop production, a sandy loam and a clay loam, were amended with these biochars at a rate of 45 Mg·ha−1 and incubated for three weeks in a growth chamber. The soils were analyzed for multiple soil quality indicators including soil organic matter content, pH, electrical conductivity (EC, and available nutrients. Results showed that amendment with cotton gin trash biochar has the greatest impact on both soils, significantly increasing SOM and plant nutrient (P, K, Ca, Mn contents, as well as increasing the electrical conductivity, which creates concerns about soil salinity. Other biochar treatments significantly elevated soil salinity in clay loam soil, except for pecan shell biochar amended soil, which was not statistically different in EC from the control treatment. Generally, the effects of the biochar amendments were minimal for many soil measurements and varied with soil texture. Effects of biochars on soil salinity and pH/nutrient availability will be important considerations for research on biochar application to arid soils.

  3. Soil quality improvement under an ecologically based farming system in northwest Missouri

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecologically based farming conserves and improves the soil resource and protects environmental quality by using organic or natural resources without application of synthetic chemicals. Soil quality assessment indicates the ability of management systems to optimize soil productivity and to maintain i...

  4. Queering Participatory Design Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    McWilliams, Jacob

    2016-01-01

    This article offers a way forward for educators and researchers interested in drawing on the principles of "queer theory" to inform participatory design. In this article, I aim to achieve two related goals: To introduce new concepts within a critical conceptual practice of questioning and challenging the "heterosexual matrix"…

  5. Scandinavian Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Iversen, Ole Sejer; Smith, Rachel Charlotte

    2012-01-01

    As Scandinavian Participatory Design (PD) approach is a highly values-led design approach, and is gaining importance in IDC research, we discuss the underlying values of democracy, quality of work and emancipation of this approach. We present a case study, Digital Natives, in which the Scandinavian...

  6. Participatory Development Communication

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Training Needs in Participatory Development Communication .... to the development of society (communications in the service of development), ... There are also some definitions that give a more restrictive meaning to the way ...... Although proponents of participation appreciate that there is more good than bad in the ...

  7. Health Participatory Sensing Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Clarke

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The use of participatory sensing in relation to the capture of health-related data is rapidly becoming a possibility due to the widespread consumer adoption of emerging mobile computing technologies and sensing platforms. This has the potential to revolutionize data collection for population health, aspects of epidemiology, and health-related e-Science applications and as we will describe, provide new public health intervention capabilities, with the classifications and capabilities of such participatory sensing platforms only just beginning to be explored. Such a development will have important benefits for access to near real-time, large-scale, up to population-scale data collection. However, there are also numerous issues to be addressed first: provision of stringent anonymity and privacy within these methodologies, user interface issues, and the related issue of how to incentivize participants and address barriers/concerns over participation. To provide a step towards describing these aspects, in this paper we present a first classification of health participatory sensing models, a novel contribution to the literature, and provide a conceptual reference architecture for health participatory sensing networks (HPSNs and user interaction example case study.

  8. Comparative analysis of metagenomes of Italian top soil improvers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gigliucci, Federica; Brambilla, Gianfranco; Tozzoli, Rosangela; Michelacci, Valeria; Morabito, Stefano

    2017-01-01

    Biosolids originating from Municipal Waste Water Treatment Plants are proposed as top soil improvers (TSI) for their beneficial input of organic carbon on agriculture lands. Their use to amend soil is controversial, as it may lead to the presence of emerging hazards of anthropogenic or animal origin in the environment devoted to food production. In this study, we used a shotgun metagenomics sequencing as a tool to perform a characterization of the hazards related with the TSIs. The samples showed the presence of many virulence genes associated to different diarrheagenic E. coli pathotypes as well as of different antimicrobial resistance-associated genes. The genes conferring resistance to Fluoroquinolones was the most relevant class of antimicrobial resistance genes observed in all the samples tested. To a lesser extent traits associated with the resistance to Methicillin in Staphylococci and genes conferring resistance to Streptothricin, Fosfomycin and Vancomycin were also identified. The most represented metal resistance genes were cobalt-zinc-cadmium related, accounting for 15–50% of the sequence reads in the different metagenomes out of the total number of those mapping on the class of resistance to compounds determinants. Moreover the taxonomic analysis performed by comparing compost-based samples and biosolids derived from municipal sewage-sludges treatments divided the samples into separate populations, based on the microbiota composition. The results confirm that the metagenomics is efficient to detect genomic traits associated with pathogens and antimicrobial resistance in complex matrices and this approach can be efficiently used for the traceability of TSI samples using the microorganisms’ profiles as indicators of their origin. - Highlights: • Sludge- and green- based biosolids analysed by metagenomics. • Biosolids may introduce microbial hazards in the food chain. • Metagenomics enables tracking biosolids’ sources.

  9. Comparative analysis of metagenomes of Italian top soil improvers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gigliucci, Federica, E-mail: Federica.gigliucci@libero.it [Department of Veterinary Public Health and Food Safety, Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Viale Regina Elena, 299 00161 Rome (Italy); Department of Sciences, University Roma,Tre, Viale Marconi, 446, 00146 Rome (Italy); Brambilla, Gianfranco; Tozzoli, Rosangela; Michelacci, Valeria; Morabito, Stefano [Department of Veterinary Public Health and Food Safety, Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Viale Regina Elena, 299 00161 Rome (Italy)

    2017-05-15

    Biosolids originating from Municipal Waste Water Treatment Plants are proposed as top soil improvers (TSI) for their beneficial input of organic carbon on agriculture lands. Their use to amend soil is controversial, as it may lead to the presence of emerging hazards of anthropogenic or animal origin in the environment devoted to food production. In this study, we used a shotgun metagenomics sequencing as a tool to perform a characterization of the hazards related with the TSIs. The samples showed the presence of many virulence genes associated to different diarrheagenic E. coli pathotypes as well as of different antimicrobial resistance-associated genes. The genes conferring resistance to Fluoroquinolones was the most relevant class of antimicrobial resistance genes observed in all the samples tested. To a lesser extent traits associated with the resistance to Methicillin in Staphylococci and genes conferring resistance to Streptothricin, Fosfomycin and Vancomycin were also identified. The most represented metal resistance genes were cobalt-zinc-cadmium related, accounting for 15–50% of the sequence reads in the different metagenomes out of the total number of those mapping on the class of resistance to compounds determinants. Moreover the taxonomic analysis performed by comparing compost-based samples and biosolids derived from municipal sewage-sludges treatments divided the samples into separate populations, based on the microbiota composition. The results confirm that the metagenomics is efficient to detect genomic traits associated with pathogens and antimicrobial resistance in complex matrices and this approach can be efficiently used for the traceability of TSI samples using the microorganisms’ profiles as indicators of their origin. - Highlights: • Sludge- and green- based biosolids analysed by metagenomics. • Biosolids may introduce microbial hazards in the food chain. • Metagenomics enables tracking biosolids’ sources.

  10. Improvement of CBR and compaction characteristics of bauxite rich dispersive soils available in pakistan: a case study of khushab soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Batool, S.

    2016-01-01

    Dispersion of dispersive soil occurs when it comes in contact with water and clay particles deflocculate and disperse away from each other. Thus dispersive soils undergo erosion under low seepage velocity leading to instability problems of slopes and earth retaining structures. The amount of dispersion depends upon the mineralogy and geochemistry of clayey soil as well as the dissolved salts of the pore fluid. The dispersivity of the soil mainly depends on the amount of exchangeable sodium present in its formation. Under saturated conditions, the attractive forces are less than the repulsive forces and this will help the particles to disperse and go into colloidal suspension. The use of chemical stabilizers such as lime and cement to bind the clay particles and reduce the dispersivity of soil and to improve the compaction and CBR characteristics of bauxite rich dispersive soil present in Khushab district have been studied in this research. Soil behavior was studied after addition of 2%, 4%, 6% and 8% Lime and Cement, at optimum level of 6% for Lime and Cement; it has been observed that the CBR and compaction characteristics of Khushab soil have been improved. (author)

  11. Developing a Mental Health eClinic to Improve Access to and Quality of Mental Health Care for Young People: Using Participatory Design as Research Methodologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ospina-Pinillos, Laura; Davenport, Tracey A; Ricci, Cristina S; Milton, Alyssa C; Scott, Elizabeth M; Hickie, Ian B

    2018-05-28

    Each year, many young Australians aged between 16 and 25 years experience a mental health disorder, yet only a small proportion access services and even fewer receive timely and evidence-based treatments. Today, with ever-increasing access to the Internet and use of technology, the potential to provide all young people with access (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) to the support they require to improve their mental health and well-being is promising. The aim of this study was to use participatory design (PD) as research methodologies with end users (young people aged between 16 and 25 years and youth health professionals) and our research team to develop the Mental Health eClinic (a Web-based mental health clinic) to improve timely access to, and better quality, mental health care for young people across Australia. A research and development (R&D) cycle for the codesign and build of the Mental Health eClinic included several iterative PD phases: PD workshops; translation of knowledge and ideas generated during workshops to produce mockups of webpages either as hand-drawn sketches or as wireframes (simple layout of a webpage before visual design and content is added); rapid prototyping; and one-on-one consultations with end users to assess the usability of the alpha build of the Mental Health eClinic. Four PD workshops were held with 28 end users (young people n=18, youth health professionals n=10) and our research team (n=8). Each PD workshop was followed by a knowledge translation session. At the conclusion of this cycle, the alpha prototype was built, and one round of one-on-one end user consultation sessions was conducted (n=6; all new participants, young people n=4, youth health professionals n=2). The R&D cycle revealed the importance of five key components for the Mental Health eClinic: a home page with a visible triage system for those requiring urgent help; a comprehensive online physical and mental health assessment; a detailed dashboard of results; a

  12. Priority interventions to improve the management of chronic non-cancer pain in primary care: a participatory research of the ACCORD program

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lalonde L

    2015-04-01

    , difficulties in access to health professionals and services, and patient empowerment needs. Based on the nominal group discussions, the following priority interventions were identified: interdisciplinary continuing education, interdisciplinary treatment approach, regional expert leadership, creation and definition of care paths, and patient education programs. Conclusion: Barriers to optimal management of CNCP in primary care are numerous. Improving its management cannot be envisioned without considering multifaceted interventions targeting several dimensions of the Chronic Care Model and focusing on both clinicians and patients. Keywords: chronic pain, community-based participatory research, health service accessibility, patient-centered care, primary health care

  13. the use of integrated soil fertility approach in the improvement of soil

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Sammy

    Innovational practices in the management of organic matters in semi-arid soil, ... Compared to other areas, a large proportion of soil in semi-arid areas has low .... combine old and new methods of nutrient management into ecologically sound and ... Furthermore, organic matter is the energy source for soil fauna and micro ...

  14. Participatory plant breeding and organic agriculture: A synergistic model for organic variety development in the United States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrienne C. Shelton

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Organic farmers require improved varieties that have been adapted to their unique soils, nutrient inputs, management practices, and pest pressures. One way to develop adapted varieties is to situate breeding programs in the environment of intended use, such as directly on organic farms, and in collaboration with organic farmers. This model is a form of participatory plant breeding, and was originally created in order to meet the needs of under-served, small-scale farmers in developing countries. A robust body of literature supports the quantitative genetic selection theory of participatory plant breeding, and helps to explain its increasing prevalence among organic breeding projects in the United States. The history of the organic farming movement in the United States highlights the cultural relevance of engaging organic farmers in the breeding process, complementing the biological rationale for participatory plant breeding. In addition, limited private investment in organic plant breeding encourages the involvement of plant breeders at public institutions. This paper synthesizes the biological, cultural, and economic justifications for utilizing participatory plant breeding as an appropriate methodology for organic cultivar development.

  15. Soil quality improvement for crop production in semi-arid West Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Ouédraogo, E.

    2004-01-01

    Soil quality maintenance and crop production improvement in semi-arid West Africa require appropriate cropping technologies, which are ecologically sound and economically viable. Thus, on-farm and on-station experiments have been carried out on the central plateau and in the south of Burkina Faso The results show that adoption of improved soil fertility technologies such as composting by farmers is determined by soil fertility status, access to the market and social reasons. Organic amendment...

  16. Estimation of improved resolution soil moisture in vegetated areas using passive AMSR-E data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moradizadeh, Mina; Saradjian, Mohammad R.

    2018-03-01

    Microwave remote sensing provides a unique capability for soil parameter retrievals. Therefore, various soil parameters estimation models have been developed using brightness temperature (BT) measured by passive microwave sensors. Due to the low resolution of satellite microwave radiometer data, the main goal of this study is to develop a downscaling approach to improve the spatial resolution of soil moisture estimates with the use of higher resolution visible/infrared sensor data. Accordingly, after the soil parameters have been obtained using Simultaneous Land Parameters Retrieval Model algorithm, the downscaling method has been applied to the soil moisture estimations that have been validated against in situ soil moisture data. Advance Microwave Scanning Radiometer-EOS BT data in Soil Moisture Experiment 2003 region in the south and north of Oklahoma have been used to this end. Results illustrated that the soil moisture variability is effectively captured at 5 km spatial scales without a significant degradation of the accuracy.

  17. Effects and mechanisms of biochar-microbe interactions in soil improvement and pollution remediation: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Xiaomin; Chen, Baoliang; Zhu, Lizhong; Xing, Baoshan

    2017-08-01

    Biochars have attracted tremendous attention due to their effects on soil improvement; they enhance carbon storage, soil fertility and quality, and contaminant (organic and heavy metal) immobilization and transformation. These effects could be achieved by modifying soil microbial habitats and (or) directly influencing microbial metabolisms, which together induce changes in microbial activity and microbial community structures. This review links microbial responses, including microbial activity, community structures and soil enzyme activities, with changes in soil properties caused by biochars. In particular, we summarized possible mechanisms that are involved in the effects that biochar-microbe interactions have on soil carbon sequestration and pollution remediation. Special attention has been paid to biochar effects on the formation and protection of soil aggregates, biochar adsorption of contaminants, biochar-mediated transformation of soil contaminants by microorganisms, and biochar-facilitated electron transfer between microbial cells and contaminants and soil organic matter. Certain reactive organic compounds and heavy metals in biochar may induce toxicity to soil microorganisms. Adsorption and hydrolysis of signaling molecules by biochar interrupts microbial interspecific communications, potentially altering soil microbial community structures. Further research is urged to verify the proposed mechanisms involved in biochar-microbiota interactions for soil remediation and improvement. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Use of mixed solid waste as a soil amendment for saline-sodic soil remediation and oat seedling growth improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Yuan; Ge, Tian; Zheng, Yanli; Li, Hua; Cheng, Fangqin

    2016-11-01

    Soil salinization has become a worldwide problem that imposes restrictions on crop production and food quality. This study utilizes a soil column experiment to address the potential of using mixed solid waste (vinegar residue, fly ash, and sewage sludge) as soil amendment to ameliorate saline-sodic soil and enhance crop growth. Mixed solid waste with vinegar residue content ranging from 60-90 %, sewage sludge of 8.7-30 %, and fly ash of 1.3-10 % was added to saline-sodic soil (electrical conductivity (EC 1:5 ) = 1.83 dS m -1 , sodium adsorption ratio (SAR 1:5 ) = 129.3 (mmol c L -1 ) 1/2 , pH = 9.73) at rates of 0 (control), 130, 260, and 650 kg ha -1 . Results showed that the application of waste amendment significantly reduced SAR, while increasing soil soluble K + , Ca 2+ , and Mg 2+ , at a dose of 650 kg ha -1 . The wet stability of macro-aggregates (>1 mm) was improved 90.7-133.7 % when the application rate of amendment was greater than 260 kg ha -1 . The application of this amendment significantly reduced soil pH. Germination rates and plant heights of oats were improved with the increasing rate of application. There was a positive correlation between the percentage of vinegar residue and the K/Na ratio in the soil solutions and roots. These findings suggest that applying a mixed waste amendment (vinegar residue, fly ash, and sewage sludge) could be a cost-effective method for the reclamation of saline-sodic soil and the improvement of the growth of salt-tolerant plants.

  19. Biochar Application in Malaysian Sandy and Acid Sulfate Soils: Soil Amelioration Effects and Improved Crop Production over Two Cropping Seasons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theeba Manickam

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The use of biochar as an agricultural soil improvement was tested in acid sulfate and sandy soils from Malaysia, cropped with rice and corn. Malaysia has an abundance of waste rice husks that could be used to produce biochar. Rice husk biochar was produced in a gasifier at a local mill in Kelantan as well as in the laboratory using a controlled, specially designed, top lift up draft system (Belonio unit. Rice husk biochar was applied once to both soils at two doses (2% and 5%, in a pot set up that was carried out for two cropping seasons. Positive and significant crop yield effects were observed for both soils, biochars and crops. The yield effects varied with biochar type and dosage, with soil type and over the cropping seasons. The yield increases observed for the sandy soil were tentatively attributed to significant increases in plant-available water contents (from 4%–5% to 7%–8%. The yield effects in the acid sulfate soil were likely a consequence of a combination of (i alleviation of plant root stress by aluminum (Ca/Al molar ratios significantly increased, from around 1 to 3–5 and (ii increases in CEC. The agricultural benefits of rice husk biochar application to Malaysian soils holds promise for its future use.

  20. Managing cultivated pastures for improving soil quality in South ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    There are concerns that soils under pastures in certain regions of South Africa are degrading as a result of mismanagement, which include practising continuous tillage, improper grazing management, injudicious application of fertilisers and poor irrigation management. Soil quality indicators, which include physical, ...

  1. The participatory agenda

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kortbek, Hjørdis Brandrup; Schwartz, Charlotte Præstegaard; Sørensen, Anne Scott

    2016-01-01

    of a “radical democracy” (Mouffe, 2014) and the “radical institution” (Bishop, 2013), respectively, we focus on key terms in the participatory agenda such as “access”, “agency” and “ownership”, and pursue a conceptual intervention in terms of a “post-critical”, “anticipatory” analysis and practice (Rogoff......In this article we address the participatory agenda defined as outreach in Danish national cultural policies, tracing specificities to other Nordic and EU cultural policies as well (Bell & Oakley 2015). The article investigates the discursive link that these policies establish between participation......, democracy and transformation, and argue that a range of paradoxes emerge once the agenda is translated at local cultural policy levels or by different institutions and adopted into daily practice. The thesis is that the agenda is a configuration of the “culture complex” as outlined by Tony Bennett (2013...

  2. PARTICIPATORY MANAGEMENT AND LEADERSHIP

    OpenAIRE

    Mirela PUSCASU; Radu SILAGHI

    2013-01-01

    Participatory management and leadership can enhance an organization's effectiveness and capacity by the fact that the only asset a manager has are the people. If people show loyalty, and are willing to work at full capacity and to make extra efforts, if they trust their leaders and feel safe, then the results and efficiency will be increased. The more one can delegate the decision-making and responsibilities, the more loyalty and trust one will have from the employees.

  3. Groupwork and participatory media

    OpenAIRE

    Brailas, Alexios; Nika, Stella

    2015-01-01

    Face-to-face groupwork sessions combined with online participatory social media could be a quite promising pedagogical strategy. In this paper, we present the pedagogical design and the rationale for groupwork in a blended educational landscape. In traditional teaching, the emphasis is given on the dissemination of information, on rich content delivery by a sage on the stage. In the proposed model, the educator acts as a facilitator, as the active guide on the side of the group, delegating au...

  4. Accreditation and Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Simonsen, Jesper; Scheuer, John Damm

    2016-01-01

    This paper presents a soft project management paradigm approach based on participatory design to assuring values and benefits in public projects. For more than a decade, quality development in the Danish healthcare sector has been managed with an accreditation system known as the Danish Quality......-driven IT development and suggest how this approach may form a cornerstone of project management in a new quality-assurance program for the Danish healthcare sector....

  5. Searching for plant root traits to improve soil cohesion and resist soil erosion

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Baets, Sarah; Smyth, Kevin; Denbigh, Tom; Weldon, Laura; Higgins, Ben; Matyjaszkiewicz, Antoni; Meersmans, Jeroen; Chenchiah, Isaac; Liverpool, Tannie; Quine, Tim; Grierson, Claire

    2017-04-01

    Soil erosion poses a serious threat to future food and environmental security. Soil erosion protection measures are therefore of great importance for soil conservation and food security. Plant roots have proven to be very effective in stabilizing the soil and protecting the soil against erosion. However, no clear insights are yet obtained into the root traits that are responsible for root-soil cohesion. This is important in order to better select the best species for soil protection. Research using Arabidopsis mutants has made great progress towards explaining how root systems are generated by growth, branching, and responses to gravity, producing mutants that affect root traits. In this study, the performance of selected Arabidopsis mutants is analyzed in three root-soil cohesion assays. Measurements of detachment, uprooting force and soil detachment are here combined with the microscopic analysis of root properties, such as the presence, length and density of root hairs in this case. We found that Arabidopsis seedlings with root hairs (wild type, wer myb23, rsl4) were more difficult to detach from gel media than hairless (cpc try) or short haired (rsl4, rhd2) roots. Hairy roots (wild type, wer myb23) on mature, non-reproductive rosettes were more difficult to uproot from compost or clay soil than hairless roots (cpc try). At high root densities, erosion rates from soils with hairless roots (cpc try) were as much as 10 times those seen from soils occupied by roots with hairs (wer myb23, wild type). We find therefore root hairs play a significant role in root-soil cohesion and in minimizing erosion. This framework and associated suite of experimental assays demonstrates its ability to measure the effect of any root phenotype on the effectiveness of plant roots in binding substrates and reducing erosion.

  6. Improvement of clayey soil characteristics by using activated carbon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Al-Soudany Kawther

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The clay soil is weak and unable to carry the applied loads as a result of the weight of buildings or vehicles on the load performing on the soil. In this research, clay soil was grained and mixed with different percentages of activated carbon additives to investigate its performance. One type of clay soil from Al-Taji city was used. The percentages of activated carbon 3, 5, 7 and 9% were added to the soil and the influence of the admixture was observed by comparing the results with the untreated soil. The selected properties for this comparison were specific gravity, consistency limits, compaction, static compaction, CBR, consolidation, swelling and unconfined compressive strength. The results showed that the plasticity index, maximum dry weight and specific gravity decreased as the percentage of additives increased. The unconfined compressive strength increased as the percentage of additives and curing periods (1, 7, 14 and 28days increased. The amount of increase in soil strength was even more than 100% for the 9% activatedcarbon. The results showed that the addition of activated carbon has a positive effect to the geotechnical properties.

  7. Design Anthropology in Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Smith, Rachel Charlotte; Kjærsgaard, Mette Gislev

    2015-01-01

    This focus section explores the opportunities of design anthropology in participatory design as an approach to research and design in an increasingly global and digital world. Traditionally, ethnography has been used in Participatory design to research real-life contexts and challenges, and as ways...... opportunities of using design anthropology as a holistic and critical approach to addressing societal challenges and change, and a way for anthropologists and designers to engage in participatory research and design that extend beyond the empirical....

  8. Incorporating microbial dormancy dynamics into soil decomposition models to improve quantification of soil carbon dynamics of northern temperate forests

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    He, Yujie [Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Dept. of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences; Yang, Jinyan [Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA (United States). Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources; Northeast Forestry Univ., Harbin (China). Center for Ecological Research; Zhuang, Qianlai [Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Dept. of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences; Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Dept. of Agronomy; Harden, Jennifer W. [U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, CA (United States); McGuire, Anthony D. [Alaska Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, U.S. Geological Survey, Univ. of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK (United States). U.S. Geological Survey, Alaska Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Liu, Yaling [Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN (United States). Dept. of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences; Wang, Gangsheng [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Climate Change Science Inst. and Environmental Sciences Division; Gu, Lianhong [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Environmental Sciences Division

    2015-11-20

    Soil carbon dynamics of terrestrial ecosystems play a significant role in the global carbon cycle. Microbial-based decomposition models have seen much growth recently for quantifying this role, yet dormancy as a common strategy used by microorganisms has not usually been represented and tested in these models against field observations. Here in this study we developed an explicit microbial-enzyme decomposition model and examined model performance with and without representation of microbial dormancy at six temperate forest sites of different forest types. We then extrapolated the model to global temperate forest ecosystems to investigate biogeochemical controls on soil heterotrophic respiration and microbial dormancy dynamics at different temporal-spatial scales. The dormancy model consistently produced better match with field-observed heterotrophic soil CO2 efflux (RH) than the no dormancy model. Our regional modeling results further indicated that models with dormancy were able to produce more realistic magnitude of microbial biomass (<2% of soil organic carbon) and soil RH (7.5 ± 2.4 PgCyr-1). Spatial correlation analysis showed that soil organic carbon content was the dominating factor (correlation coefficient = 0.4-0.6) in the simulated spatial pattern of soil RH with both models. In contrast to strong temporal and local controls of soil temperature and moisture on microbial dormancy, our modeling results showed that soil carbon-to-nitrogen ratio (C:N) was a major regulating factor at regional scales (correlation coefficient = -0.43 to -0.58), indicating scale-dependent biogeochemical controls on microbial dynamics. Our findings suggest that incorporating microbial dormancy could improve the realism of microbial-based decomposition models and enhance the integration of soil experiments and mechanistically based modeling.

  9. Instability improvement of the subgrade soils by lime addition at Borg El-Arab, Alexandria, Egypt

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Shinawi, A.

    2017-06-01

    Subgrade soils can affect the stability of any construction elsewhere, instability problems were found at Borg El-Arab, Alexandria, Egypt. This paper investigates geoengineering properties of lime treated subgrade soils at Borg El-Arab. Basic laboratory tests, such as water content, wet and dry density, grain size, specific gravity and Atterberg limits, were performed for twenty-five samples. Moisture-density (compaction); California Bearing Ratio (CBR) and Unconfined Compression Strength (UCS) were conducted on treated and natural soils. The measured geotechnical parameters of the treated soil shows that 6% lime is good enough to stabilize the subgrade soils. It was found that by adding lime, samples shifted to coarser side, Atterberg limits values of the treated soil samples decreased and this will improve the soil to be more stable. On the other hand, Subgrade soils improved as a result of the bonding fine particles, cemented together to form larger size and reduce the plastiCity index which increase soils strength. The environmental scanning electron microscope (ESEM) is point to the presence of innovative aggregated cement materials which reduce the porosity and increase the strength as a long-term curing. Consequently, the mixture of soil with the lime has acceptable mechanical characteristics where, it composed of a high strength base or sub-base materials and this mixture considered as subgrade soil for stabilizations and mitigation the instability problems that found at Borg Al-Arab, Egypt.

  10. The improvement of Pilot-scale Electrokinetic for Radioactive Soil Decontamination

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Park, Hye Min; Kim, Gye Nam; Kim, Wan Suk; Moon, Jai Kwon [Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of)

    2012-05-15

    Most nuclear facility sites have been contaminated by leakage of radioactive waste-solution due to corrosion of the waste-solution tanks and connection pipes by their long-term operation, set up around underground nuclear facilities. Therefore it was needed that the method to remediate a large volume of radioactive soil should be developed. Until now the soil washing method has studied to remediate soil contaminated with uranium, cobalt, cesium, and so on. But it has a lower removal efficiency of nuclide from soils and generated a large volume of waste-solution. And its application to the soil composed of fine particle is impossible. So, the electrokinetic method has been studied as a new technology for soil remediation recently. In this study, the original electrokinetic equipment of 50L suitable to soil contamination characteristics of Korean nuclear facility sites was manufactured for the remediation of soil contaminated with uranium. During experiment with the original electrokinetic equipment, many metal oxides were generated and were stuck on the cathod plate. Several methods to reduce the generation quantity of metal oxides in the electrokinetic equipment and to take off metal oxides from the cathod plate were improved. The soil with uranium was remediated with the improved electrokinetic equipment. The required time to remediate a radioactive soil to under a clearance concentration level was yielded through demonstration experiment with the improved electrokinetic equipment for its different radioactivity concentration

  11. The improvement of Pilot-scale Electrokinetic for Radioactive Soil Decontamination

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, Hye Min; Kim, Gye Nam; Kim, Wan Suk; Moon, Jai Kwon

    2012-01-01

    Most nuclear facility sites have been contaminated by leakage of radioactive waste-solution due to corrosion of the waste-solution tanks and connection pipes by their long-term operation, set up around underground nuclear facilities. Therefore it was needed that the method to remediate a large volume of radioactive soil should be developed. Until now the soil washing method has studied to remediate soil contaminated with uranium, cobalt, cesium, and so on. But it has a lower removal efficiency of nuclide from soils and generated a large volume of waste-solution. And its application to the soil composed of fine particle is impossible. So, the electrokinetic method has been studied as a new technology for soil remediation recently. In this study, the original electrokinetic equipment of 50L suitable to soil contamination characteristics of Korean nuclear facility sites was manufactured for the remediation of soil contaminated with uranium. During experiment with the original electrokinetic equipment, many metal oxides were generated and were stuck on the cathod plate. Several methods to reduce the generation quantity of metal oxides in the electrokinetic equipment and to take off metal oxides from the cathod plate were improved. The soil with uranium was remediated with the improved electrokinetic equipment. The required time to remediate a radioactive soil to under a clearance concentration level was yielded through demonstration experiment with the improved electrokinetic equipment for its different radioactivity concentration

  12. Summer cover crops and soil amendments to improve growth and nutrient uptake of okra

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Q.R.; Li, Y.C.; Klassen, W. [University of Florida, Homestead, FL (United States). Center for Tropical Research & Education

    2006-04-15

    A pot experiment with summer cover crops and soil amendments was conducted in two consecutive years to elucidate the effects of these cover crops and soil amendments on 'Clemson Spineless 80' okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) yields and biomass production, and the uptake and distribution of soil nutrients and trace elements. The cover crops were sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea), cowpea (Vigna unguiculata), velvetbean (Mucuna deeringiana), and sorghum sudan-grass (Sorghum bicolor x S. bicolor var. sudanense) with fallow as the control. The organic soil amendments were biosolids (sediment from wastewater plants), N-Viro Soil (a mixture of biosolids and coal ash), coal ash (a combustion by-product from power plants), co-compost (a mixture of 3 biosolids: 7 yard waste), and yard waste compost (mainly from leaves and branches of trees and shrubs, and grass clippings) with a soil-incorporated cover crop as the control. As a subsequent vegetable crop, okra was grown after the cover crops, alone or together with the organic soil amendments, had been incorporated. All of the cover crops, except sorghum sudangrass in 2002-03, significantly improved okra fruit yields and the total biomass production. Both cover crops and soil amendments can substantially improve nutrient uptake and distribution. The results suggest that cover crops and appropriate amounts of soil amendments can be used to improve soil fertility and okra yield without adverse environmental effects or risk of contamination of the fruit. Further field studies will be required to confirm these findings.

  13. Participatory Research and Development for Sustainable Agriculture ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Participatory Research and Development for Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resource Management - A Sourcebook Volume 3 : Doing Participatory Research and Development. Couverture du livre Participatory Research and Development for Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resource Management : A.

  14. Improved Seasonal Prediction of European Summer Temperatures With New Five-Layer Soil-Hydrology Scheme

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunzel, Felix; Müller, Wolfgang A.; Dobrynin, Mikhail; Fröhlich, Kristina; Hagemann, Stefan; Pohlmann, Holger; Stacke, Tobias; Baehr, Johanna

    2018-01-01

    We evaluate the impact of a new five-layer soil-hydrology scheme on seasonal hindcast skill of 2 m temperatures over Europe obtained with the Max Planck Institute Earth System Model (MPI-ESM). Assimilation experiments from 1981 to 2010 and 10-member seasonal hindcasts initialized on 1 May each year are performed with MPI-ESM in two soil configurations, one using a bucket scheme and one a new five-layer soil-hydrology scheme. We find the seasonal hindcast skill for European summer temperatures to improve with the five-layer scheme compared to the bucket scheme and investigate possible causes for these improvements. First, improved indirect soil moisture assimilation allows for enhanced soil moisture-temperature feedbacks in the hindcasts. Additionally, this leads to improved prediction of anomalies in the 500 hPa geopotential height surface, reflecting more realistic atmospheric circulation patterns over Europe.

  15. Anaerobic digestate from biogas production as a resource for improving soil fertility: effects on crop yield and soil properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pastorelli, Roberta; Lagomarsino, Alessandra; Vignozzi, Nadia; Valboa, Giuseppe; Papini, Rossella; Fabiani, Arturo; Simoncini, Stefania; Mocali, Stefano; Piccolo, Raimondo

    2013-04-01

    Soil fertility is fundamental in determining crops productivity in all farming systems. Production of biogas through anaerobic digestion of energy crops generates residues that can represent a valuable resource to sustain and improve soil fertility and to increase soil organic matter content. Residues from anaerobic digestion contain organic fractions and available nutrients, that can thus be returned to the cultivation soil as fertilizer and soil conditioner. However, some unknown aspects of digested residues utilization remain to explore: i) the nutrient supply and the real potential for mineral fertilization substitution, ii) the impact on the structure and functioning of soil microbial communities, iii) the direct and indirect effects on soil structure, organic matter and C mineralization. The aim of the present research was to gain a better understanding of these aspects, evaluating the effects of anaerobic digestate application on soil properties and maize yield. With the main focus of comparing mineral fertilization (250 Kg N ha-1) with digested residues addition (at the dose of 25 % and 50 % of mineral fertilizer), a triplicate sets of plots were designed in a field experiment on a silty-clay loam soil in the southern Po Valley (Italy). The amount of applied residues was calculated according to its N content in order to fertilizer each plots with the same amount of total nitrogen. Residues from digestion showed a N content of 0.4 % (60 % as N-NH4) and a C/N ratio of 3. Changes in soil quality after residues application were studied with a holistic approach, involving microbiological, physical and chemical aspects of soil fertility. In particular, we determined: the abundance and diversity of bacterial and fungal soil communities; the soil organic matter content, its distribution within soil aggregates and the C mineralization potential; cation exchange capacity; the main macro and micro nutrients; bulk density; aggregate stability. No significant

  16. Restoration of soil fertility and improvement of cropping systems for sustainable development in the humid savannahs of Cote d'Ivoire

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bachmann, T.

    1999-01-01

    The present FAO-project addresses the soil fertility problems by combining organic with inorganic nutrient sources and actively involving farmers and other beneficiaries in an integrated, long-term development process. A major objective of the project is the participatory on-farm testing and validation of available technological innovations for soil fertility improvement. The results should fulfill two main requirements: (i) provide the farmer with a short-term production increase and (ii) improve/maintain soil fertility in the medium and long-term. The strategic framework of the project is based on the following three main elements: the need to take into account all aspects of soil fertility restoration including areas concerned, cost of fertility restoration, and economic profitability and sustainability; - the need to test all fertility improving measures at farm level in representative agro-ecozones of the humid and sub-humid savannas before their extension at large; the need to identify major macro-economic constraints (e.g. marketing) which impede sustainable agricultural development in the savannah region. The primary goal of the project is to replace traditional shifting cultivation in the humid savannas of the country by economically, ecologically and socially more sustainable production systems. In order to achieve this development objective the project focuses on the following main issues: restoration of soil fertility through improved land and crop management and more efficient use of mineral and organic fertilizers; crop diversification through more efficient use of water resources (irrigation); introduction of new cropping systems which have been successfully tested in countries with similar agro-ecological conditions; adapting traditional land tenure to the market economy; involving the private sector in all aspects of regional development assisted by Government through the creation of a favorable environment. Phase 1: constraint analysis and

  17. Furfural and its biochar improve the general properties of a saline soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Y.; Xu, G.; Shao, H. B.

    2014-07-01

    Organic materials (e.g., furfural residue) are generally believed to improve the physical and chemical properties of saline soils with low fertility. Recently, biochar has been received more attention as a possible measure to improve the carbon balance and improve soil quality in some degraded soils. However, little is known about their different amelioration of a sandy saline soil. In this study, 56 d incubation experiment was conducted to evaluate the influence of furfural and its biochar on the properties of saline soil. The results showed that both furfural and biochar greatly reduced pH, increased soil organic carbon (SOC) content and cation exchange capacity (CEC), and enhanced the available phosphorus (P) in the soil. Furfural is more efficient than biochar in reducing pH: 5% furfural lowered the soil pH by 0.5-0.8 (soil pH: 8.3-8.6), while 5% biochar decreased by 0.25-0.4 due to the loss of acidity in pyrolysis process. With respect to available P, furfural addition at a rate of 5% increased available P content by 4-6 times in comparison to 2-5 times with biochar application. In reducing soil exchangeable sodium percentage (ESP), biochar is slightly superior to furfural because soil ESP reduced by 51% and 43% with 5% furfural and 5% biochar at the end of incubation. In addition, no significant differences were observed between furfural and biochar about their capacity to retain N, P in leaching solution and to increase CEC in soil. These facts may be caused by the relatively short incubation time. In general, furfural and biochar exhibited a different effect depending on the property: furfural was more effective in decreasing pH and increasing available P, whereas biochar played a more important role in increasing SOC and reducing ESP of saline soil.

  18. Mixed artificial grasslands with more roots improved mine soil infiltration capacity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Gao-Lin; Yang, Zheng; Cui, Zeng; Liu, Yu; Fang, Nu-Fang; Shi, Zhi-Hua

    2016-04-01

    Soil water is one of the critical limiting factors in achieving sustainable revegetation. Soil infiltration capacity plays a vital role in determining the inputs from precipitation and enhancing water storage, which are important for the maintenance and survival of vegetation patches in arid and semi-arid areas. Our study investigated the effects of different artificial grasslands on soil physical properties and soil infiltration capacity. The artificial grasslands were Medicago sativa, Astragalus adsurgens, Agropyron mongolicum, Lespedeza davurica, Bromus inermis, Hedysarum scoparium, A. mongolicum + Artemisia desertorum, A. adsurgens + A. desertorum and M. sativa + B. inermis. The soil infiltration capacity index (SICI), which was based on the average infiltration rate of stage I (AIRSI) and the average infiltration rate of stage III (AIRS III), was higher (indicating that the infiltration capacity was greater) under the artificial grasslands than that of the bare soil. The SICI of the A. adsurgens + A. desertorum grassland had the highest value (1.48) and bare soil (-0.59) had the lowest value. It was evident that artificial grassland could improve soil infiltration capacity. We also used principal component analysis (PCA) to determine that the main factors that affected SICI were the soil water content at a depth of 20 cm (SWC20), the below-ground root biomasses at depths of 10 and 30 cm (BGB10, BGB30), the capillary porosity at a depth of 10 cm (CP10) and the non-capillary porosity at a depth of 20 cm (NCP20). Our study suggests that the use of Legume-poaceae mixtures and Legume-shrub mixtures to create grasslands provided an effective ecological restoration approach to improve soil infiltration properties due to their greater root biomasses. Furthermore, soil water content, below-ground root biomass, soil capillary porosity and soil non-capillary porosity were the main factors that affect the soil infiltration capacity.

  19. Improving soil fertility through Azolla application in low land rice: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Purushottam Subedi

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The continuous usages of chemical fertilizers have harmful effects on soil organic matter reserves, soil health and environmental safety. The use of Bio-fertilizers like Azolla not only increases the rice productivity but also improves the long term soil fertility. Azolla is a fast growing aquatic pteridophyte which fixes atmospheric Nitrogen by forming a symbiotic association with the Blue-Green Algae, Anabaena azollae. Azolla is an efficient Nitrogen fixer. It is grown in lowland rice fields because flooded habitat is suitable for it. Under favorable field condition, it fixes atmospheric nitrogen at a rate exceeding that of the Legume-Rhizobium symbiotic relationship. It increases the rice yield equivalent to that produced by 30-60 kg N/ha. As green manure in water logged soil, it enhances the rapid mineralization of nitrogen. It reduces the NH3 volatilization losses through its influence on floodwater pH that leads to the conservation of urea-N in the system to improve the efficiency of N fertilizers. It significantly improves the physical and chemical properties of the soil including improvement in soil microbial activities. It helps in addition of Organic Matter and release of cations such as Magnesium, Calcium and Sodium. The total N, available P and exchangeable K in the soil and N-uptake by rice can be improved. Therefore, Azolla application is considered as a good practice for sustaining soil fertility and crop productivity irrespective of some limitations.

  20. Improving Phosphorus Availability in an Acid Soil Using Organic Amendments Produced from Agroindustrial Wastes

    OpenAIRE

    Ch’ng, Huck Ywih; Ahmed, Osumanu Haruna; Majid, Nik Muhamad Ab.

    2014-01-01

    In acid soils, soluble inorganic phosphorus is fixed by aluminium and iron. To overcome this problem, acid soils are limed to fix aluminium and iron but this practice is not economical. The practice is also not environmentally friendly. This study was conducted to improve phosphorus availability using organic amendments (biochar and compost produced from chicken litter and pineapple leaves, resp.) to fix aluminium and iron instead of phosphorus. Amending soil with biochar or compost or a mixt...

  1. A Combination of Biochar-Mineral Complexes and Compost Improves Soil Bacterial Processes, Soil Quality, and Plant Properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Jun; Zhang, Rui; Nielsen, Shaun; Joseph, Stephen D; Huang, Danfeng; Thomas, Torsten

    2016-01-01

    Organic farming avoids the use of synthetic fertilizers and promises food production with minimal environmental impact, however this farming practice does not often result in the same productivity as conventional farming. In recent years, biochar has received increasing attention as an agricultural amendment and by coating it with minerals to form biochar-mineral complex (BMC) carbon retention and nutrient availability can be improved. However, little is known about the potential of BMC in improving organic farming. We therefore investigated here how soil, bacterial and plant properties respond to a combined treatment of BMC and an organic fertilizer, i.e., a compost based on poultry manure. In a pakchoi pot trial, BMC and compost showed synergistic effects on soil properties, and specifically by increasing nitrate content. Soil nitrate has been previously observed to increase leaf size and we correspondingly saw an increase in the surface area of pakchoi leaves under the combined treatment of BMC and composted chicken manure. The increase in soil nitrate was also correlated with an enrichment of bacterial nitrifiers due to BMC. Additionally, we observed that the bacteria present in the compost treatment had a high turnover, which likely facilitated organic matter degradation and a reduction of potential pathogens derived from the manure. Overall our results demonstrate that a combination of BMC and compost can stimulate microbial process in organic farming that result in better vegetable production and improved soil properties for sustainable farming.

  2. A combination of biochar-mineral complexes and compost improves soil bacterial processes, soil quality and plant properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JUN eYE

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Organic farming avoids the use of synthetic fertilizers and promises food production with minimal environmental impact, however this farming practice does not often result in the same productivity as conventional farming. In recent years, biochar has received increasing attention as an agricultural amendment and by coating it with minerals to form biochar-mineral complex (BMC carbon retention and nutrient availability can be improved. However, little is known about the potential of BMC in improving organic farming. We therefore investigated here how soil, bacterial and plant properties respond to a combined treatment of BMC and an organic fertilizer, i.e. a compost based on poultry manure. In a pakchoi pot trial, BMC and compost showed synergistic effects on soil properties, and specifically by increasing nitrate content. Soil nitrate has been previously observed to increase leaf size and we correspondingly saw an increase in the surface area of pakchoi leaves under the combined treatment of BMC and chicken manure. The increase in soil nitrate was also correlated with an enrichment of bacterial nitrifiers due to BMC. Additionally, we observed that the bacteria present in the compost treatment had a high turnover, which likely facilitated organic matter degradation and a reduction of potential pathogens derived from the manure. Overall our results demonstrate that a combination of BMC and compost can stimulate microbial process in organic farming that result in better vegetable production and improved soil properties for sustainable farming.

  3. Hydrologic-Process-Based Soil Texture Classifications for Improved Visualization of Landscape Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groenendyk, Derek G.; Ferré, Ty P.A.; Thorp, Kelly R.; Rice, Amy K.

    2015-01-01

    Soils lie at the interface between the atmosphere and the subsurface and are a key component that control ecosystem services, food production, and many other processes at the Earth’s surface. There is a long-established convention for identifying and mapping soils by texture. These readily available, georeferenced soil maps and databases are used widely in environmental sciences. Here, we show that these traditional soil classifications can be inappropriate, contributing to bias and uncertainty in applications from slope stability to water resource management. We suggest a new approach to soil classification, with a detailed example from the science of hydrology. Hydrologic simulations based on common meteorological conditions were performed using HYDRUS-1D, spanning textures identified by the United States Department of Agriculture soil texture triangle. We consider these common conditions to be: drainage from saturation, infiltration onto a drained soil, and combined infiltration and drainage events. Using a k-means clustering algorithm, we created soil classifications based on the modeled hydrologic responses of these soils. The hydrologic-process-based classifications were compared to those based on soil texture and a single hydraulic property, Ks. Differences in classifications based on hydrologic response versus soil texture demonstrate that traditional soil texture classification is a poor predictor of hydrologic response. We then developed a QGIS plugin to construct soil maps combining a classification with georeferenced soil data from the Natural Resource Conservation Service. The spatial patterns of hydrologic response were more immediately informative, much simpler, and less ambiguous, for use in applications ranging from trafficability to irrigation management to flood control. The ease with which hydrologic-process-based classifications can be made, along with the improved quantitative predictions of soil responses and visualization of landscape

  4. Mapping Soil Properties of Africa at 250 m Resolution: Random Forests Significantly Improve Current Predictions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomislav Hengl

    Full Text Available 80% of arable land in Africa has low soil fertility and suffers from physical soil problems. Additionally, significant amounts of nutrients are lost every year due to unsustainable soil management practices. This is partially the result of insufficient use of soil management knowledge. To help bridge the soil information gap in Africa, the Africa Soil Information Service (AfSIS project was established in 2008. Over the period 2008-2014, the AfSIS project compiled two point data sets: the Africa Soil Profiles (legacy database and the AfSIS Sentinel Site database. These data sets contain over 28 thousand sampling locations and represent the most comprehensive soil sample data sets of the African continent to date. Utilizing these point data sets in combination with a large number of covariates, we have generated a series of spatial predictions of soil properties relevant to the agricultural management--organic carbon, pH, sand, silt and clay fractions, bulk density, cation-exchange capacity, total nitrogen, exchangeable acidity, Al content and exchangeable bases (Ca, K, Mg, Na. We specifically investigate differences between two predictive approaches: random forests and linear regression. Results of 5-fold cross-validation demonstrate that the random forests algorithm consistently outperforms the linear regression algorithm, with average decreases of 15-75% in Root Mean Squared Error (RMSE across soil properties and depths. Fitting and running random forests models takes an order of magnitude more time and the modelling success is sensitive to artifacts in the input data, but as long as quality-controlled point data are provided, an increase in soil mapping accuracy can be expected. Results also indicate that globally predicted soil classes (USDA Soil Taxonomy, especially Alfisols and Mollisols help improve continental scale soil property mapping, and are among the most important predictors. This indicates a promising potential for transferring

  5. Effects of Comprehensive Technologies on the Improvement of Acidified Vineyard Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Hongguo; Wang, Qiunan; Xu, Feng; Jin, Jun; Wang, Guoyu; Liu, Jianguo

    2018-01-01

    Soil acidification is an important factor that restricts the yield and quality of fruits. In this study, the comprehensive improving technologies were applied on the vineyards in which the soil pH is below 5.5. The technologies include application of soil conditioner, organic fertilizer and bacterial manure, and growth of green manure and natural grass. The results show that the comprehensive improving technologies can raise the pH of 0-15 cm soil layer by 0.5-0.8 unit and the pH of 15-30 cm soil layer by 0.3-0.6 unit. The soil bulk densities are decreased by 0.77-10.42%. The contents of organic matter, total N, available P and K in the soils are all increased. Therefore, the soil fertilities are improved. The yields of grape fruits are increased by 12.77-14.94%, and the contents of soluble solid in the grapes are raised by 7.01-9.55%, by the comprehensive measure of seaweed liquid silicon plus sheep manure plus growth of green manure. The comprehensive measure of soil conditioner Naduoli No. 1 plus bacterial manure plus natural grass increases the yields of grape by 7.67%, raises the content of soluble solid in the grape by 8.6%. But the effect of the comprehensive measure of unslaked lime plus sheep manure plus growth of green manure is not clear.

  6. Participatory visualization with Wordle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viégas, Fernanda B; Wattenberg, Martin; Feinberg, Jonathan

    2009-01-01

    We discuss the design and usage of "Wordle," a web-based tool for visualizing text. Wordle creates tag-cloud-like displays that give careful attention to typography, color, and composition. We describe the algorithms used to balance various aesthetic criteria and create the distinctive Wordle layouts. We then present the results of a study of Wordle usage, based both on spontaneous behaviour observed in the wild, and on a large-scale survey of Wordle users. The results suggest that Wordles have become a kind of medium of expression, and that a "participatory culture" has arisen around them.

  7. Program Theory for Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bossen, Claus; Dindler, Christian; Iversen, Ole Sejer

    2018-01-01

    How does participatory design work and what are the links between investments in terms of time, people and skills, the processes and the resulting effects? This paper explores program theory as a way for Participatory Design (PD) to investigate and evaluate these issues. Program theory comes out...

  8. Study of Various Techniques for Improving Weak and Compressible Clay Soil under a High Earth Embankment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zein A.K. M.

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper investigates the suitability of three soil improvement techniques for the construction of a high earth embankment on thick weak and highly compressible clay soil. The eastern approach embankment of Alhalfaya Bridge on the River Nile linking Khartoum North and Omdurman cities was chosen as a case study and a comprehensive site investigation program was carried out to determine the properties the subsurface soils. The study results showed that unless the subsurface soils have been improved they may fail or undergo excessively large settlements due to the embankment construction. Three ground improvement techniques based on the principles of the “staged construction method, SCM”, “vertical sand drain, VSD” and “sand compaction piles, SCP” of embankment foundation soil treatment are discussed and evaluated. Embankment design options based on applications of the above methods have been proposed for foundation treatment to adequately support embankment loads. A method performance evaluation based on the improvement of soil properties achieved; the time required for construction and compared estimated costs criteria was made to assess the effectiveness and expected overall performance. Adoption of any of the soil improvement techniques considered depends mainly on the most critical and decisive factor governing the embankment design. Based on the overall performance for the embankment case studied, the sand drains is considered as the most appropriate improvement method followed by the sand compaction piles technique whereas the staged construction method showed the poorest overall performance.

  9. Improving streamflow simulations and forecasting performance of SWAT model by assimilating remotely sensed soil moisture observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patil, Amol; Ramsankaran, RAAJ

    2017-12-01

    This article presents a study carried out using EnKF based assimilation of coarser-scale SMOS soil moisture retrievals to improve the streamflow simulations and forecasting performance of SWAT model in a large catchment. This study has been carried out in Munneru river catchment, India, which is about 10,156 km2. In this study, an EnkF based new approach is proposed for improving the inherent vertical coupling of soil layers of SWAT hydrological model during soil moisture data assimilation. Evaluation of the vertical error correlation obtained between surface and subsurface layers indicates that the vertical coupling can be improved significantly using ensemble of soil storages compared to the traditional static soil storages based EnKF approach. However, the improvements in the simulated streamflow are moderate, which is due to the limitations in SWAT model in reflecting the profile soil moisture updates in surface runoff computations. Further, it is observed that the durability of streamflow improvements is longer when the assimilation system effectively updates the subsurface flow component. Overall, the results of the present study indicate that the passive microwave-based coarser-scale soil moisture products like SMOS hold significant potential to improve the streamflow estimates when assimilating into large-scale distributed hydrological models operating at a daily time step.

  10. Recycling Improves Soil Fertility Management in Smallholdings in Tanzania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariane Krause

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Residues from bioenergy and ecological sanitation (EcoSan can be utilized to sustain soil fertility and productivity. With regard to certain cooking and sanitation technologies used in smallholder households (hh, we systematically analyzed how utilization of the respective potentials to recover residues for farming affects (i soil nutrient balances, (ii the potential for subsistence production of composts, and (iii environmental emissions. On the example of an intercropping farming system in Karagwe, Tanzania, we studied specific farming practices including (1 current practices of using standard compost only; (2 a combination of using biogas slurry, urine, and standard compost; (3 a combination of using so-called “CaSa-compost” (containing biochar and sanitized human excreta, Project “Carbonization and Sanitation”, urine, and standard compost. The system analysis combines a soil nutrient balance (SNB with material flow analysis (MFA. Currently, nitrogen (N and phosphorus (P are depleted by −54 ± 3 and −8 ± 1 kg∙ha−1∙year−1, respectively. Our analysis shows, however, a clear potential to reduce depletion rates of N, and to reverse the SNB of P, to bring about a positive outcome. Composts and biogas slurry supply sufficient P to crops, while urine effectively supplements N. By using resources recovered from cooking and sanitation, sufficient compost for subsistence farming may be produced. Human excreta contribute especially to total N and total P in CaSa-compost, whilst biochar recovered from cooking with microgasifier stoves adds to total carbon (C and total P. We conclude that the combined recycling of household residues from cooking and from sanitation, and CaSa-compost in particular, is especially suitable for sustainable soil management, as it mitigates existing P-deficiency and soil acidity, and also restores soil organic matter.

  11. Improving soil enzyme activities and related quality properties of reclaimed soil by applying weathered coal in opencast-mining areas of the Chinese loess plateau

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Hua [College of Environment and Resources, Shanxi University, Taiyuan (China); CAS/Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Process, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Yantai (China); Shao, Hongbo [CAS/Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Process, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Yantai (China); Institute for Life Sciences, Qingdao University of Science and Technology (QUST), Qingdao (China); Li, Weixiang; Bi, Rutian [Shanxi Agricultural University, Taigu (China); Bai, Zhongke [Department of Land Science Technology, University of Geosciences, Beijing (China)

    2012-03-15

    There are many problems for the reclaimed soil in opencast-mining areas of the Loess Plateau of China such as poor soil structure and extreme poverty in soil nutrients and so on. For the sake of finding a better way to improve soil quality, the current study was to apply the weathered coal for repairing soil media and investigate the physicochemical properties of the reclaimed soil and the changes in enzyme activities after planting Robinia pseucdoacacia. The results showed that the application of the weathered coal significantly improved the quality of soil aggregates, increased the content of water stable aggregates, and the organic matter, humus, and the cation exchange capacity of topsoil were significantly improved, but it did not have a significant effect on soil pH. Planting R. pseucdoacacia significantly enhanced the activities of soil catalase, urease, and invertase, but the application of the weathered coal inhibited the activity of catalase. Although the application of appropriate weathered coal was able to significantly increase urease activity, the activities of catalase, urease, or invertase had a close link with the soil profile levels and time. This study suggests that applying weathered coals could improve the physicochemical properties and soil enzyme activities of the reclaimed soil in opencast-mining areas of the Loess Plateau of China and the optimum applied amount of the weathered coal for reclaimed soil remediation is about 27 000 kg hm{sup -2}. (Copyright copyright 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH and Co. KGaA, Weinheim)

  12. Incorporating microbial dormancy dynamics into soil decomposition models to improve quantification of soil carbon dynamics of northern temperate forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Yujie; Yang, Jinyan; Zhuang, Qianlai; Harden, Jennifer W.; McGuire, A. David; Liu, Yaling; Wang, Gangsheng; Gu, Lianhong

    2015-01-01

    Soil carbon dynamics of terrestrial ecosystems play a significant role in the global carbon cycle. Microbial-based decomposition models have seen much growth recently for quantifying this role, yet dormancy as a common strategy used by microorganisms has not usually been represented and tested in these models against field observations. Here we developed an explicit microbial-enzyme decomposition model and examined model performance with and without representation of microbial dormancy at six temperate forest sites of different forest types. We then extrapolated the model to global temperate forest ecosystems to investigate biogeochemical controls on soil heterotrophic respiration and microbial dormancy dynamics at different temporal-spatial scales. The dormancy model consistently produced better match with field-observed heterotrophic soil CO2 efflux (RH) than the no dormancy model. Our regional modeling results further indicated that models with dormancy were able to produce more realistic magnitude of microbial biomass (analysis showed that soil organic carbon content was the dominating factor (correlation coefficient = 0.4–0.6) in the simulated spatial pattern of soil RHwith both models. In contrast to strong temporal and local controls of soil temperature and moisture on microbial dormancy, our modeling results showed that soil carbon-to-nitrogen ratio (C:N) was a major regulating factor at regional scales (correlation coefficient = −0.43 to −0.58), indicating scale-dependent biogeochemical controls on microbial dynamics. Our findings suggest that incorporating microbial dormancy could improve the realism of microbial-based decomposition models and enhance the integration of soil experiments and mechanistically based modeling.

  13. Protecting smallholders' food security by improving soils | CRDI ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    The resilience of farming systems to climate change and variability depends upon healthy soil. ... communities I know already struggle with perennial food deficits and limited .... Protection de la sécurité alimentaire des petits exploitants grâce à ...

  14. Estimation of improved resolution soil moisture in vegetated areas ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Mina Moradizadeh

    2018-03-06

    Mar 6, 2018 ... soil parameters have been obtained using Simultaneous Land Parameters Retrieval Model algorithm, the downscaling method has been applied to ... retrieving multiple land surface parameters using passive microwave remote .... spheric information that is not routinely available. (Zhang and Wegehenkel ...

  15. Vegetation improvement and soil biological quality in the Sahel of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The method of Tropical Soil Biology and Fertility (TSBF) was used to assess macro-fauna abundance and diversity in different land use types (cropland, shallow land, degraded land and forest). Four sites were selected, in the Sahelian zone of Burkina Faso, with contrasted Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI).

  16. Soil stabilization with recycled materials improves subgrade performance : research spotlight.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-02-29

    The use of recycled materials for subgrade stabilization can provide the support needed for construction vehicle loading and more typical long-term traffic loading. This is a particular need in Michigan due to the prevalence of weak subgrade soils. U...

  17. An improved method for removing transuranics from coral soil at Johnston Atoll

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moroney, J.D. III.; Johnson, N.R.; Moroney, K.S.; Mercier, J.R.

    1992-01-01

    An improved approach for removing mixed plutonium and americium contamination from coral soil matrix at the Defense Nuclear Agency's (DNA's) Johnston Atoll site has been developed by DNA's contractor, TMA/Eberline. The system uses arrays of sensitive radiation detectors coupled with sophisticated computer software newly designed by Eberline Instrument Corporation. The software controls a unique segmented gate methodology for removing contaminated soil from a moving feed supply on conveyor belts. Contaminated soil is diverted to a metal drum for collecting larger sized 'hot' particles (< 5,000 Becquerels) or to a soil washing process designed to remove dispersed low level contamination from a soil fraction consisting of very small particles. Low to intermediate levels of contamination are removed from the soil to meet DNAs criteria for release for unrestricted use based on US EPA guidelines

  18. Micaceous Soil Strength And Permeability Improvement Induced By Microbacteria From Vegetable Waste

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omar, R. C.; Roslan, R.; Baharuddin, I. N. Z.; Hanafiah, M. I. M.

    2016-11-01

    Green technology method using vegetable waste are introduced in this paper for improvement of phyllite residual soil from UNITEN, Campus. Residual soil from phyllite are known as micaceous soils and it give problem in managing the stability of the slope especially in wet and extensively dry seasons. Micaceous soil are collected using tube sampler technique and mixed with liquid contain microorganism from fermented vegetable waste name as vege-grout to form remolded sample. The remolded sample are classify as 15.0%, 17.5%, 20.00% and 22.5% based on different incremental percentages of vege-grout. The curing time for the sample are 7, 14, 21, 28, and 35 days before the tests were conducted. Observation of the effect of treatment shows 20.0% of liquid contain Bacillus pasteurii and Bacillus Subtilis with 21 days curing time is the optimum value in strengthening the soil and improve the permeability.

  19. Improving Griffith's protocol for co-extraction of microbial DNA and RNA in adsorptive soils

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paulin, Mélanie Marie; Nicolaisen, Mette Haubjerg; Jacobsen, Carsten Suhr

    2013-01-01

    Quantification of microbial gene expression is increasingly being used to study key functions in soil microbial communities, yet major limitations still exist for efficient extraction of nucleic acids, especially RNA for transcript analysis, from this complex matrix. We present an improved......-time PCR on both the RNA (after conversion to cDNA) and the DNA fraction of the extracts. Non-adsorptive soils were characterized by low clay content and/or high phosphate content, whereas adsorptive soils had clay contents above 20% and/or a strong presence of divalent Ca in combination with high p......H. Modifications to the co-extraction protocol improved nucleic acid extraction efficiency from all adsorptive soils and were successfully validated by DGGE analysis of the indigenous community based on 16S rRNA gene and transcripts in soils representing low biomass and/or high clay content. This new approach...

  20. The Potential of Improved Fallows to Improve and Conserve the Fertility of Nutrients-Depleted Soils of Western Kenya

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jama, B.; Amandou, I.; Niang; Amadalo, B.; Wolf, J.; Rao, M.R.; Buresh, R.J.

    1999-01-01

    Maize yields are low low and declining in the densely populated highlands of Western Kenya where soils are deficient mainly in nitrogen, phosphrous and, in some areas potassium. Over the last seven years, a team of scientists from several agricultural institutions, national and international has been developing and testing on-farm soil fertility improving technologies. Improved fallows of fast-growing leguminous species appear to be one such technology that could be a more productive alternative to the commonly practiced natural fallows. Sesbania session, Crotolaria grahamiana and Tephrosia vogelii are some the promising species. In six to eight months, fallows of these species can root to N rich subsoil (0.5-2 m) below the soil surface and recycle it to the surface soil through leaf and root litter. Within this period, N sufficient for the requirements of moderate maize yields (3-4 t ha -1 ) can be recycled particular y in sites not limited by available soil P. Such fallows can also recycle sufficient K in K deficient sites. Unfortunately soils in most areas of Western Kenya are P deficient and although improved fallows can enhance the availability of soil P less available to crops, they cannot increase its supply. Under these conditions, P inputs from external sources is necessary to improve crop yields meaningfully and economically. Agronomic evaluations of inorganic P sources for maize suggests Minjingu phosphates rock can be alternative to more expensive water-soluble P sources, e.g., triple superphosphate. The need for P input and the benefits of integrating it with improved fallows in order to overcome deficiencies of other nutrients, particularly N and K is highlighted in this paper

  1. Improving eye safety in citrus harvest crews through the acceptance of personal protective equipment, community-based participatory research, social marketing, and community health workers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tovar-Aguilar, J Antonio; Monaghan, Paul F; Bryant, Carol A; Esposito, Andrew; Wade, Mark; Ruiz, Omar; McDermott, Robert J

    2014-01-01

    For the last 10 years, the Partnership for Citrus Workers Health (PCWH) has been an evidence-based intervention program that promotes the adoption of protective eye safety equipment among Spanish-speaking farmworkers of Florida. At the root of this program is the systematic use of community-based preventive marketing (CBPM) and the training of community health workers (CHWs) among citrus harvester using popular education. CBPM is a model that combines the organizational system of community-based participatory research (CBPR) and the strategies of social marketing. This particular program relied on formative research data using a mixed-methods approach and a multilevel stakeholder analysis that allowed for rapid dissemination, effective increase of personal protective equipment (PPE) usage, and a subsequent impact on adoptive workers and companies. Focus groups, face-to-face interviews, surveys, participant observation, Greco-Latin square, and quasi-experimental tests were implemented. A 20-hour popular education training produced CHWs that translated results of the formative research to potential adopters and also provided first aid skills for eye injuries. Reduction of injuries is not limited to the use of safety glasses, but also to the adoption of timely intervention and regular eye hygiene. Limitations include adoption in only large companies, rapid decline of eye safety glasses without consistent intervention, technological limitations of glasses, and thorough cost-benefit analysis.

  2. Participatory planning intercultural: Reflections for social work

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esperanza Gómez Hernández

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Since the nineties, participatory planning has emerged as a linking strategy for various social, political, economic and cultural sectors that assessed it as a potential for building consensus in the making of local processes forsocial improvement. Similarly, it was legitimized as a setting for practice for professionals trained in the social sciences, mainly Social Work. This article, from a geopolitical and geo-cultural perspective, presents contextual elements that determined the configuration of participatory planning in Latin America. These elements shall be staged in order to redefine diversity and the intercultural perspective that has been linked to this mobilizing strategy, against the institutionalized discourse of development and for the emergence of crisis and ruptures with this social paradigm from other practices and worldviews of life in the territories.

  3. Participatory Research and Development for Sustainable Agriculture ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    It is crucial, for example, that local stakeholders provide input to the process. Participatory research and ... Participatory Research and Development for Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resource Management - A Sourcebook Volume 2: Enabling Participatory Research and Development. Book cover Participatory ...

  4. Improved Understanding of In Situ Chemical Oxidation Soil Reactivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-12-01

    followed by a mixture of nitric and perchloric acids . This sequence uses precise heat ramping and holding cycles which takes the sample to dryness...release different kinds of products (e.g., benzenepolycarboxylic acids , phenolic acids , and fatty acids ) with varying resistance to the attack of... oxalate might be the only organic product in the oxidation of humic and non-humic soils by permanganate or even hydrogen peroxide (Harada and Inoko

  5. Bedding Improves Yellow-Poplar Growth on Fragipan Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    John K. Francis

    1979-01-01

    Yellow-poplar can be grown on soils that have a shallow fragipan--but unless such sites are bedded, growth is likely to be extremely poor. In a Tennessee study, bedding increased height of planted yellow-poplar over 5 years, but fertilizer did not. Because of the cost of bedding and the availability of nonfragipan sites, it would ordinarily be better not to plant...

  6. Improvement of nitrogen utilization and soil properties by addition of a mineral soil conditioner: mechanism and performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Xiaodan; Shi, Lin; Cai, Rumeng

    2018-01-01

    A mineral soil conditioner (MSC) composed of activated potash feldspar, gypsum, and calcium carbonate and containing an amount of available mineral nutrients, is shown to be effective for plant growth and acidic soil amelioration. In this study, a field test was conducted over four rice seasons by examining treatment with control check (CK), MSC, biological active carbon, and lime to investigate the nitrogen-use efficiency and mechanism of soil characteristic variations due to the desilicification and allitization of soil as well as the unrestrained use of nitrogen (N) fertilizer in recent years. Influences of MSC on the xylem sap intensity and mean rice yields were evaluated, and the soil type was also analyzed using the FactSage 6.1 Reaction, phase diagram, and Equilib modules. The results of the field trial showed that MSC application increased the xylem sap intensity and nitrogen export intensity by 37.33-39.85% and 31.40-51.20%, respectively. A significant increase (5.63-15.48%) in mean grain yields was achieved with MSC application over that with biological active carbon and lime application. The effects of MSC had a tendency to increase with time in the field experiment results, and grain yields increased after the initial application. The new formation of clay minerals exhibits a significant influence on [Formula: see text] fixation, especially for 2:1 phyllosilicates with illite, owing to the interlayers of the clay minerals. Our preliminary results showed that kaolinite, the main 1:1 phyllosilicate clay mineral in ferralsol, transformed to illite at room temperature as a consequence of the presence of H 4 SiO 4 and available K + supplied by MSC. This indicated that improving the soil quality combined with reducing N losses from soils is an efficient way to control non-point source pollution from agriculture without the risk of decreased in grain yield.

  7. Development of methods for remediation of artificial polluted soils and improvement of soils for ecologically clean agricultural production systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bogachev, V.; Adrianova, G.; Zaitzev, V.; Kalinin, V.; Kovalenko, E.; Makeev, A.; Malikova, L.; Popov, Yu.; Savenkov, A.; Shnyakina, V.

    1996-01-01

    The purpose of the research: Development of methods for the remediation of artificial polluted soils and the improvement of polluted lands to ecologically clean agricultural production.The following tasks will be implemented in this project to achieve viable practical solutions: - To determine the priority pollutants, their ecological pathways, and sources of origin. - To form a supervised environmental monitoring data bank throughout the various geo system conditions. - To evaluate the degree of the bio geo system pollution and the influence on the health of the local human populations. - To establish agricultural plant tolerance levels to the priority pollutants. - To calculate the standard concentrations of the priority pollutants for main agricultural plant groups. - To develop a soil remediation methodology incorporating the structural, functional geo system features. - To establish a territory zone division methodology in consideration of the degree of component pollution, plant tolerance to pollutants, plant production conditions, and human health. - Scientific grounding of the soil remediation proposals and agricultural plant material introductions with soil pollution levels and relative plant tolerances to pollutants. Technological Means, Methods, and Approaches Final proposed solutions will be based upon geo system and ecosystem approaches and methodologies. The complex ecological valuation methods of the polluted territories will be used in this investigation. Also, laboratory culture in vitro, application work, and multi-factor field experiments will be conducted. The results will be statistically analyzed using appropriate methods. Expected Results Complex biogeochemical artificial province assessment according to primary pollutant concentrations. Development of agricultural plant tolerance levels relative to the priority pollutants. Assessment of newly introduced plant materials that may possess variable levels of pollution tolerance. Remediation

  8. Reuse of Sewage Sludge for Agricultural Soil Improvement (Case Study: Kish Island

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shahnaz Shafieepour

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Sludge from wastewater treatment plants is a valuable source of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium which are necessary for the plants growth. The purpose of this research was to control sludge quality to use it for soil improvement in Kish Island, Iran. Because of soil with low qualified for agricultural activities and high import expenses of fertile soils from outside of the Island, application of sludge as a cheap source of soil amendment is an easy and economical mean to improve the soil in KishIsland. Comparison of laboratory data of domestic sludge with global standard has shown that it has suitable for application on landscapes and agriculture from the point of view of fertility and heavy metals concentration. Biological data has also shown that the sludge was in class A or B of EPA standard, to fecal coliform, based on the ambient conditions such as water, air, temperature, sun radiation and storage time. The soil test data indicated that salinity, sodium and calcium ions were between 5000-7000 mg/kg which cause a decrease in plant's growth. Transplanting of garden petunia in the region has been done in different samples mixed with sludge rate of 0, 25, 50, 75 and 100 ton/ha during December 2008 to March 2009. In the first period of the growth study, the results have shown a decrease in the amended soil with sludge retard in comparison with control plant, but after 5 months probably because of spring rains and decrease in the salinity of amended soil, the plant has shown very good growth in leaves and petal, whereas the control plant was dried. Soil and plant analyses were also approved the results because physical (humidity increase and chemical (EC decrease characteristics of the amended soil with sludge were improved. Most of the time, the concentrations of micro-nutrients such as iron, manganese, zinc, copper and nutrients in soil and leaves showed an increase in values by an increase in the rate of applied sludge. Other results were

  9. Development of a Worldwide Consortium on Evolutionary Participatory Breeding in Quinoa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Kevin M; Bazile, Didier; Kellogg, Julianne; Rahmanian, Maryam

    2016-01-01

    Chenopodium quinoa is gaining global importance due to its excellent protein quality and tolerance of abiotic stresses. The last 60 years have seen major strides in the expansion of quinoa crop production and experimentation. Quinoa's wide genetic diversity has led to its agronomic versatility and adaptation to different soil types, particularly saline soils, and environments with extremely variable conditions in terms of humidity, altitude, and temperature. The potential of quinoa to contribute to global food security was recognized in 2013 in the declaration of the International Year of Quinoa (IYQ). Promoting the use of improved homogeneous quinoa varieties standardized to comply with applicable norms on seeds or suited to intensified conventional agriculture farming systems may not generate the necessary resilience needed to respond to current and future global challenges. Maintaining and increasing quinoa biodiversity is imperative, as the dynamics of the global expansion of quinoa may constitute a threat to farmers if the spread is generated with a narrow genetic base. In this article, we propose that the method of evolutionary participatory breeding could be a useful tool to develop new quinoa genetic material in cooperation with farmers. We introduce preliminary results on quinoa population development with farmers in the Pacific Northwest region of the USA. We conclude that a global collaborative network on quinoa (GCN-Quinoa) could be the baseline for participatory plant breeding programs originating in developing or developed countries to meet the needs of farmers across a diversity of agronomic systems and a wide range of physical environments.

  10. Development of a Worldwide Consortium on Evolutionary Participatory Breeding in Quinoa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Kevin M.; Bazile, Didier; Kellogg, Julianne; Rahmanian, Maryam

    2016-01-01

    Chenopodium quinoa is gaining global importance due to its excellent protein quality and tolerance of abiotic stresses. The last 60 years have seen major strides in the expansion of quinoa crop production and experimentation. Quinoa’s wide genetic diversity has led to its agronomic versatility and adaptation to different soil types, particularly saline soils, and environments with extremely variable conditions in terms of humidity, altitude, and temperature. The potential of quinoa to contribute to global food security was recognized in 2013 in the declaration of the International Year of Quinoa (IYQ). Promoting the use of improved homogeneous quinoa varieties standardized to comply with applicable norms on seeds or suited to intensified conventional agriculture farming systems may not generate the necessary resilience needed to respond to current and future global challenges. Maintaining and increasing quinoa biodiversity is imperative, as the dynamics of the global expansion of quinoa may constitute a threat to farmers if the spread is generated with a narrow genetic base. In this article, we propose that the method of evolutionary participatory breeding could be a useful tool to develop new quinoa genetic material in cooperation with farmers. We introduce preliminary results on quinoa population development with farmers in the Pacific Northwest region of the USA. We conclude that a global collaborative network on quinoa (GCN-Quinoa) could be the baseline for participatory plant breeding programs originating in developing or developed countries to meet the needs of farmers across a diversity of agronomic systems and a wide range of physical environments. PMID:27242815

  11. Sustaining Participatory Design Initiatives

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Iversen, Ole Sejer; Dindler, Christian

    2014-01-01

    While many participatory design (PD) projects succeed in establishing new organisational initiatives or creating technology that is attuned to the people affected, the issue of how such results are sustained after the project ends remains an important challenge. We explore the challenge...... these various forms of sustainability may be pursued in PD practice and how they can become a resource in reflecting on PD activities. Finally, we discuss implications for PD practice, suggesting that a nuanced conception of sustainability and how it may relate to PD practice are useful resources for designers...... of sustaining PD initiatives beyond the individual project and discuss implications for PD practice. First, based on current PD literature, we distinguish between four ideal typical forms of sustainability: maintaining, scaling, replicating and evolving. Second, we demonstrate from a case study how...

  12. Mouthsticks - A Participatory Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernst, Waltraud; Nussbaum, Gerhard; Berger, Veronika M; Major, Zoltan

    2017-01-01

    Mouthsticks are quite an old kind of assistive technology (AT) but nevertheless they are up to now the Swiss army knives among AT. Unfortunately the popularity of mouthsticks massively decreased during the 1990s with the result that knowledge about how to produce good mouthsticks got lost and that there are hardly any adaptable mouthsticks available on the market. This paper discusses the development of a personalized mouthstick with the involvement of end users - people with severe physical disabilities - and occupational therapists as experts of everyday use. A participatory approach was chosen. The results of the analysis of a standardized questionnaire, group discussions and a collaborative workshop with IT-designers, polymer engineers, end users, occupational therapists and gender and diversity researchers are presented and discussed. This proved the necessity of the development of a personalized mouthstick.

  13. Provotypes for Participatory Innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boer, Laurens; Donovan, Jared

    2012-01-01

    Central to multi-stakeholder processes of participatory innovation is to generate knowledge about ‘users’ and to identify business opportunities accordingly. In these processes of collaborative analysis and synthesis, conflicting perceptions within and about a field of interest are likely...... to surface. Instead of the natural tendency to avoid these tensions, we demonstrate how tensions can be utilized by embodying them in provocative types (provotypes). Provotypes expose and embody tensions that surround a field of interest to support collaborative analysis and collaborative design explorations...... across stakeholders. In this paper we map how provotyping contributes to four related areas of contemporary Interaction Design practice. Through a case study that brings together stakeholders from the field of indoor climate, we provide characteristics of design provocations and design guidelines...

  14. Participatory workspace design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Seim, Rikke; Broberg, Ole

    2010-01-01

    Ergonomics are rarely addressed directly in the design and re-design of workspaces in Denmark. Often architects, engineers and other actors design the workspaces on the basis of for example spatial, technological or finan-cial considerations, thereby making ergonomics a by-product of the design...... process. However, by introducing ergonomists in the role of ‘workspace de-signers’ early in the design process, ergonomic considerations as well as the involvement of employees, can be integrated in the design process. In this article we demonstrate the use of the workspace design approach in a case study...... where an industrial manufacturer is undergoing a major technological change: going from labour intensive manual work to a highly automated production. The workspace design team, which included the company’s OHS consultant, designed the intervention as a participatory design process by using visually...

  15. Scandinavian Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Iversen, Ole Sejer; Smith, Rachel Charlotte

    2012-01-01

    As Scandinavian Participatory Design (PD) approach is a highly values-led design approach, and is gaining importance in IDC research, we discuss the underlying values of democracy, quality of work and emancipation of this approach. We present a case study, Digital Natives, in which the Scandinavian...... PD approach was put into practice. Here we involved seven teenagers in the design of an interactive museum exhibition. We discuss how this particular approach effects key design activities such as the establishment of the design space, power relations among participants, the dialogical design process......, project evaluation and the final outcome of the project. We conclude that the end goal of Scandinavian PD is not necessarily the final research prototype. Rather, in Scandinavian PD, designers strive to provide children with meaningful alternatives to existing technologies. It is to help children realize...

  16. Participatory epidemiology: the contribution of participatory research to epidemiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mario Bach

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Epidemiology has contributed in many ways to identifying various risk factors for disease and to promoting population health. However, there is a continuing debate about the ability of epidemiology not only to describe, but also to provide results which can be better translated into public health practice. It has been proposed that participatory research approaches be applied to epidemiology as a way to bridge this gap between description and action. A systematic account of what constitutes participatory epidemiology practice has, however, been lacking. Methods A scoping review was carried out focused on the question of what constitutes participatory approaches to epidemiology for the purpose of demonstrating their potential for advancing epidemiologic research. Relevant databases were searched, including both the published and non-published (grey literature. The 102 identified sources were analyzed in terms of comparing common epidemiologic approaches to participatory counterparts regarding central aspects of the research process. Exemplary studies applying participatory approaches were examined more closely. Results A highly diverse, interdisciplinary body of literature was synthesized, resulting in a framework comprised of seven aspects of the research process: research goal, research question, population, context, data synthesis, research management, and dissemination of findings. The framework specifies how participatory approaches not only differ from, but also how they can enhance common approaches in epidemiology. Finally, recommendations for the further development of participatory approaches are given. These include: enhancing data collection, data analysis, and data validation; advancing capacity building for research at the local level; and developing data synthesis. Conclusion The proposed framework provides a basis for systematically developing the emergent science of participatory epidemiology.

  17. Biochar as soil amendment to improve soil quality, crop yield, and carbon sequestration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar, a by-product of a thermochemical process called pyrolysis, which involves burning of any agricultural and animal waste (biomass) under high temperature and absence of oxygen. It is assumed that since biochar is very high in aromatic carbon, which persists in soil environment for very long ...

  18. Improved removal of iodine-125 from effluents by the soil column method using a laterite soil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sakuma, S H [Malaysian Inst. for Nuclear Technology Research, Bangi, Selangor (Malaysia)

    1997-02-01

    The soil column experiments were conducted to treat the liquid wastes from hospitals containing {sup 125}I. Three sorbent samples of laterite clay materials with different content of iron oxides (geothite, {alpha}-FeOOH) and hydroxides were used to sorb anionic iodate. Post-treatment of the liquid wastes with sodium hypochlorite (redox reagent) oxidized the iodide to the desirable iodate ion. pH after treatment ranges between 4.8 to 5.8 that is not very much different from the initial value pH4.5. The results show that 90 to 97% sorption of iodine with the decontamination factor between 10-32 could be obtained after the first two hours of experiments. The concentration has decreased from an initial value of 10 Bq{center_dot}mL{sup -1} to the concentration ranges 0.3 to 0.9 Bq{center_dot}mL{sup -1}. For the soil at pH between 4.5 to 6.0, positive charges predominated on the kaolinite, geothite and aluminum hydroxides. The negative {sup 125}I anions were electrostatically held by the positive charges on the mineral components of the laterite clay materials. The treated effluents could be released to the environment safely after further dilution and decay. The storage period will decrease tremendously providing better management for the disposal of the wastes by generators. The batch experiments conducted using different sorbent masses of soils, show that there was a drop in sorption where the mass of soils falls below approximately between 0 to 0.25 g. The sorption remains constant with the soil mass above 0.25 g. Another batch experiment using different concentration, shows that adsorption capacity of the laterite soil was 1.1 {mu}Ci/g. The adsorption is about 96% with a distribution coefficient of 1170. The experiments conducted show that anionic iodate in the liquid wastes can be removed by the laterite soil material. The column treatment method was more effective, easy to handle, and has low a capital and maintenance cost. (author). 9 refs, 10 figs, 2 tabs.

  19. Cooking for One or Two: Applying Participatory Action Research to improve community-dwelling older adults' health and well-being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chojenta, Catherine; Mingay, Edwina; Gresham, Ellie; Byles, Julie

    2018-04-01

    This paper describes the process of the redevelopment and expansion of Cooking for One or Two, a community-based nutrition education program for older adults. This project took place in a large regional city in NSW Australia from September 2011 to September 2013. Previous Cooking for One or Two participants and Hunter Medical Research Institute Research Register members were recruited for focus groups (n = 37), recipe testing (n = 19) and telephone interviews (n = 55) to aid in the development and expansion of the program. Participant's experiences and preferences informed the development of a supplementary cookbook and add-on education modules. Through a variety of methods, the research team sought ongoing feedback on the content and direction of the program. Content experts also reviewed the health promotion information for appropriateness. Utilising the Participatory Action Research process resulted in an expanded set of materials for Cooking for One or Two that can enable older people to engage in peer-to-peer education and to take care of their nutritional and social health. The process is a valuable example of the success of ongoing collaboration between researchers and program developers with the target population. SO WHAT?: While the research team developed evidence-based content for the expanded program, the key to success was the continued engagement with the target population. This engagement fostered a sense of ownership over the program by participants and has led to continued support by the target population. © 2018 Australian Health Promotion Association.

  20. Improvement of geotechnical properties of sabkha soil utilizing cement kiln dust

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdullah A. Al-Homidy

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Improvement of properties of weak soils in terms of strength, durability and cost is the key from engineering point of view. The weak soils could be stabilized using mechanical and/or chemical methods. Agents added during chemical stabilization could improve the engineering properties of treated soils. Stabilizers utilized have to satisfy noticeable performance, durability, low price, and can be easily implemented. Since cement kiln dust (CKD is industrial by-product, it would be a noble task if this waste material could be utilized for stabilization of sabkha soil. This study investigates the feasibility of utilizing CKD for improving the properties of sabkha soil. Soil samples are prepared with 2% cement and 10%, 20% or 30% CKD and are tested to determine their unconfined compressive strength (UCS, soaked California bearing ratio (CBR and durability. Mechanism of stabilization is studied utilizing advanced techniques, such as the scanning electron microscope (SEM, energy dispersive X-ray analysis (EDX, backscattered electron image (BEI and X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD. It is noted that the sabkha soil mixed with 2% cement and 30% CKD could be used as a sub-base material in rigid pavements. The incorporation of CKD leads to technical and economic benefits.

  1. Participatory methods in pediatric participatory research: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haijes, Hanneke A; van Thiel, Ghislaine J M W

    2016-05-01

    Meaningful child participation in medical research is seen as important. In order to facilitate further development of participatory research, we performed a systematic literature study to describe and assess the available knowledge on participatory methods in pediatric research. A search was executed in five databases: PubMed, CINAHL, PsycINFO, Scopus, and Cochrane. After careful screening of relevant papers, finally 24 documents were included in our analysis. Literature on participatory methods in pediatric research appears generally to be descriptive, whereby high-quality evidence is lacking. Overall, five groups of participatory methods for children could be distinguished: observational, verbal, written, visual, and active methods. The choice for one of these methods should be based on the child's age, on social and demographic characteristics, and on the research objectives. To date, these methods are still solely used for obtaining data, yet they are suitable for conducting meaningful participation. This may result in a successful partnership between children and researchers. Researchers conducting participatory research with children can use this systematic review in order to weigh the current knowledge about the participatory methods presented.

  2. Solophos fertilizer improved rice plant growth in aerobic soil

    OpenAIRE

    NIE, Lixiao; PENG, Shaobing; BOUMAN, Bas A.M.; HUANG, Jianliang; CUI, Kehui; VISPERAS, Romeo M.; PARK, Hong-Kyu

    2007-01-01

    Yield decline of continuous monocropping of aerobic rice is the major constraint to the wide adoption of aerobic rice technology. This study was conducted to determine if solophos fertilizer could be used to reverse the yield decline of this cropping system using pot and micro-plot experiments. The soil for the pot experiment was collected from a field where aerobic rice has been grown continuously for 11 seasons at the IRRI farm. Four rates (4, 6, 8, and 10gpot^) of solophos application were...

  3. Almond tree and organic fertilization for soil quality improvement in southern Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macci, Cristina; Doni, Serena; Peruzzi, Eleonora; Masciandaro, Grazia; Mennone, Carmelo; Ceccanti, Brunello

    2012-03-01

    The semi-arid Mediterranean region, characterized by long dry periods followed by heavy bursts of rainfall, is particularly prone to soil erosion. The main goal of this study is to evaluate the soil quality under different practices of bio-physical amelioration which involve the soil-plant system (almond trees) and microorganism-manure. This study, carried out in the South of Italy (Basilicata Region- Pantanello farm), considered two types of fertilization (mineral and organic) and three slope gradients (0, 2 and 6%), in order to evaluate the effects of management practices in resisting soil erosion. Chemical (organic carbon and nitrogen), physical (soil shrinkage and bulk density) and biochemical (dehydrogenase activity and hydrolytic enzyme activities) parameters were selected as markers to follow agro-ecological changes with time. The organic treatment affected soil microbiological and physico-chemical properties by increasing soil nutrient availability, microbial activity, and improving soil structure. The consistently higher values of the hydrolytic enzyme activities (β-glucosidase, phosphatase, urease and protease) often observed in the presence of plants and on the 0 and 2% slopes, suggested the stimulation of nutrient cycles by tree roots, which improve the conditions for soil microorganisms in carrying out their metabolic activity. In the 6% slope and, in particular, in the mineral fertilizer treatment, soil metabolism was lower as suggested by the dehydrogenase activity which was 50% lower than that found in the 0 and 2% slopes, this seemed to be related to a slowdown in the nutrient cycling and organic carbon metabolism. However, on this slope, in both mineral and organic treatments, a significant stimulation of hydrolytic enzyme activities and an improvement of soil structure (reduction of bulk density of about 10% and increase in total shrinkage from 20 to 60%) were observed with plants compared to the control soil. The combination of organic

  4. Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emily Moghaddas; Ken Hubbert

    2014-01-01

    When managing for resilient forests, each soil’s inherent capacity to resist and recover from changes in soil function should be evaluated relative to the anticipated extent and duration of soil disturbance. Application of several key principles will help ensure healthy, resilient soils: (1) minimize physical disturbance using guidelines tailored to specific soil types...

  5. Measurement of uranium in soil environment optimization of liquid fluorescent method improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qin Guangcheng; Li Yan

    2013-01-01

    Measurement of uranium in soil environment were introduced in this paper optimization improvement fluid fluorescence analysis method. Use 'on the determination of uranium in soil, rocks, etc. Samples of liquid fluorescent method' when measuring low environment soil samples can not meet the required precision of 8% or less in gansu province and method detection limit of 0.3 mg/kg or less. In affecting the method detection limit, recovery rate and precision of the soil sample decomposition temperature, measuring the temperature of the sample, sample pH value measurement, the background fluorescence measurement condition optimization of analysis is determined, the method detection limit of 0.133 mg/kg, the average recovery rate was 96.6%, the precision is 3.80%. The experimental results show that the method can meet the requirements for determination of trace uranium m environment soil samples. (authors)

  6. In Situ Earthworm Breeding to Improve Soil Aggregation, Chemical Properties, and Enzyme Activity in Papayas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huimin Xiang

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The long-term use of mineral fertilizers has decreased the soil fertility in papaya (Carica papaya L. orchards in South China. In situ earthworm breeding is a new sustainable practice for improving soil fertility. A field experiment was conducted to compare the effects of four treatments consisting of the control (C, chemical fertilizer (F, compost (O, and in situ earthworm breeding (E on soil physico-chemical properties and soil enzyme activity in a papaya orchard. The results showed that soil chemical properties, such as pH, soil organic matter (SOM, total nitrogen (TN, available nitrogen (AN, and total phosphorus (TP were significantly improved with the E treatment but declined with the F treatment. On 31 October 2008, the SOM and TN with the O and E treatments were increased by 26.3% and 15.1%, respectively, and by 32.5% and 20.6% compared with the F treatment. Furthermore, the O and E treatments significantly increased the activity of soil urease and sucrase. Over the whole growing season, soil urease activity was 34.4%~40.4% and 51.1%~58.7% higher with the O and E treatments, respectively, than that with the C treatment. Additionally, the activity of soil sucrase with the E treatment was always the greatest of the four treatments, whereas the F treatment decreased soil catalase activity. On 11 June 2008 and 3 July 2008, the activity of soil catalase with the F treatment was decreased by 19.4% and 32.0% compared with C. Soil bulk density with the four treatments was in the order of O ≤ E < F < C. The O- and E-treated soil bulk density was significantly lower than that of the F-treated soil. Soil porosity was in the order of C < F < E < O. Soil porosity with the O and E treatments was 6.0% and 4.7% higher, respectively, than that with the F treatment. Meanwhile, the chemical fertilizer applications significantly influenced the mean weight diameter (MWD of the aggregate and proportion of different size aggregate fractions. The E treatment

  7. Improving terrestrial evaporation estimates over continental Australia through assimilation of SMOS soil moisture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martens, B.; Miralles, D.; Lievens, H.; Fernández-Prieto, D.; Verhoest, N. E. C.

    2016-06-01

    Terrestrial evaporation is an essential variable in the climate system that links the water, energy and carbon cycles over land. Despite this crucial importance, it remains one of the most uncertain components of the hydrological cycle, mainly due to known difficulties to model the constraints imposed by land water availability on terrestrial evaporation. The main objective of this study is to assimilate satellite soil moisture observations from the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission into an existing evaporation model. Our over-arching goal is to find an optimal use of satellite soil moisture that can help to improve our understanding of evaporation at continental scales. To this end, the Global Land Evaporation Amsterdam Model (GLEAM) is used to simulate evaporation fields over continental Australia for the period September 2010-December 2013. SMOS soil moisture observations are assimilated using a Newtonian Nudging algorithm in a series of experiments. Model estimates of surface soil moisture and evaporation are validated against soil moisture probe and eddy-covariance measurements, respectively. Finally, an analogous experiment in which Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) soil moisture is assimilated (instead of SMOS) allows to perform a relative assessment of the quality of both satellite soil moisture products. Results indicate that the modelled soil moisture from GLEAM can be improved through the assimilation of SMOS soil moisture: the average correlation coefficient between in situ measurements and the modelled soil moisture over the complete sample of stations increased from 0.68 to 0.71 and a statistical significant increase in the correlations is achieved for 17 out of the 25 individual stations. Our results also suggest a higher accuracy of the ascending SMOS data compared to the descending data, and overall higher quality of SMOS compared to AMSR-E retrievals over Australia. On the other hand, the effect of soil moisture data

  8. Improving the phytoremediation of heavy metals contaminated soil by use of sewage sludge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Placek, Agnieszka; Grobelak, Anna; Kacprzak, Malgorzata

    2016-01-01

    Sewage sludge, in particular from the food industry, is characterized by fertilizing properties, due to the high content of organic matter and nutrients. The application of sewage sludge causes an improvement of soil parameters as well as increase in cation exchange capacity, and thus stronger binding of cations in the soil environment, which involves the immobilization of nutrients and greater resistance to contamination. In a field experiment sewage sludge has been used as an additive to the soil supporting the phytoremediation process of land contaminated with heavy metals (Cd, Zn, and Pb) using trees species: Scots pine (Pinus silvestris L.), Norway spruce (Picea abies L.), and oak (Quercus robur L.). The aim of the research was to determine how the application of sewage sludge into the soil surface improves the phytoremediation process. The conducted field experiment demonstrated that selected trees like Scots pine and Norway spruce, because of its excellent adaptability, can be used in the remediation of soil. Oak should not be used in the phytoremediation process of soils contaminated with high concentrations of trace elements in the soil, because a significant amount of heavy metals was accumulated in the leaves of oak causing a risk of recontamination.

  9. Improving the phytoremediation of heavy metals contaminated soil by use of sewage sludge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Placek, Agnieszka; Grobelak, Anna; Kacprzak, Malgorzata

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Sewage sludge, in particular from the food industry, is characterized by fertilizing properties, due to the high content of organic matter and nutrients. The application of sewage sludge causes an improvement of soil parameters as well as increase in cation exchange capacity, and thus stronger binding of cations in the soil environment, which involves the immobilization of nutrients and greater resistance to contamination. In a field experiment sewage sludge has been used as an additive to the soil supporting the phytoremediation process of land contaminated with heavy metals (Cd, Zn, and Pb) using trees species: Scots pine (Pinus silvestris L.), Norway spruce (Picea abies L.), and oak (Quercus robur L.). The aim of the research was to determine how the application of sewage sludge into the soil surface improves the phytoremediation process. The conducted field experiment demonstrated that selected trees like Scots pine and Norway spruce, because of its excellent adaptability, can be used in the remediation of soil. Oak should not be used in the phytoremediation process of soils contaminated with high concentrations of trace elements in the soil, because a significant amount of heavy metals was accumulated in the leaves of oak causing a risk of recontamination. PMID:26368503

  10. PARTICIPATORY EVALUATION OF SUSTAINABLE LAND USE AND TECHNOLOGY ADOPTION IN TWO AGROECOSYSTEMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaime Ruiz

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available In order to identify the main agroecosystems, their limiting factors and adequate technological options, participatory approaches, such as community ranking, were used in a micro-hydrological basin in Central Oaxaca, Mexico. This area is characterized by small farm size (1-2 ha, low input agriculture and low standards of living. The results of a pretested survey were presented at community meetings and were subjected to discussion to rank the problems found in order of importance. Overall, the main production constraints were: low soil fertility, insect pests and plant diseases, lack of rain and soil erosion. After field evaluations of several sustainable technologies, the following was found: a organic mulching can reduce soil erosion, weeds and conserve soil moisture, b intercropped green manures with maize could be a mean to improve soil fertility while still allowing producing this staple crop, c composting of crop residues with weeds and farmyard manure was also promoted amongst the peasants, but only a few of them adopted this practice due mostly to high labor requirements and d even though it is an expensive technology, the use of floating row covers to produce tomatoes and hot peppers was quickly adopted by the peasants. It was concluded that the best way to convince the peasants to adopt a technological innovation is to show them that it works under their own circumstances.

  11. Improved Assimilation of Streamflow and Satellite Soil Moisture with the Evolutionary Particle Filter and Geostatistical Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Hongxiang; Moradkhani, Hamid; Abbaszadeh, Peyman

    2017-04-01

    Assimilation of satellite soil moisture and streamflow data into hydrologic models using has received increasing attention over the past few years. Currently, these observations are increasingly used to improve the model streamflow and soil moisture predictions. However, the performance of this land data assimilation (DA) system still suffers from two limitations: 1) satellite data scarcity and quality; and 2) particle weight degeneration. In order to overcome these two limitations, we propose two possible solutions in this study. First, the general Gaussian geostatistical approach is proposed to overcome the limitation in the space/time resolution of satellite soil moisture products thus improving their accuracy at uncovered/biased grid cells. Secondly, an evolutionary PF approach based on Genetic Algorithm (GA) and Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC), the so-called EPF-MCMC, is developed to further reduce weight degeneration and improve the robustness of the land DA system. This study provides a detailed analysis of the joint and separate assimilation of streamflow and satellite soil moisture into a distributed Sacramento Soil Moisture Accounting (SAC-SMA) model, with the use of recently developed EPF-MCMC and the general Gaussian geostatistical approach. Performance is assessed over several basins in the USA selected from Model Parameter Estimation Experiment (MOPEX) and located in different climate regions. The results indicate that: 1) the general Gaussian approach can predict the soil moisture at uncovered grid cells within the expected satellite data quality threshold; 2) assimilation of satellite soil moisture inferred from the general Gaussian model can significantly improve the soil moisture predictions; and 3) in terms of both deterministic and probabilistic measures, the EPF-MCMC can achieve better streamflow predictions. These results recommend that the geostatistical model is a helpful tool to aid the remote sensing technique and the EPF-MCMC is a

  12. Nutrient balances at farm level in Machakos (Kenya), using a participatory nutrient monitoring (NUTMON) approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gachimbi, L.N.; Keulen, van H.; Thuranira, E.G.; Karuku, A.M.; Jager, de A.; Nguluu, S.; Ikombo, B.M.; Kinama, J.M.; Itabari, J.K.; Nandwa, S.M.

    2005-01-01

    A total of 74 farms were selected from Machakos, Mwingi and Makueni districts in Kenya, using participatory techniques and classified in three categories on the basis of soil fertility management (low level, medium and high level). Soil fertility management was monitored, using the NUTrient

  13. Participatory ergonomics generates new product to assist rural workers in greenhouses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Miguez, S.A.; Vink, P.; Hallbeck, M.S.

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to show that the conjunction of participatory ergonomics and outside consulting can be the link among professionals from different areas. This association can result in improvements in the workplace as well as in the production process. Employing participatory

  14. Amendment of Tephrosia Improved Fallows with Inorganic Fertilizers Improves Soil Chemical Properties, N Uptake, and Maize Yield in Malawi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maggie G. Munthali

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Maize production in Malawi is limited mainly by low soil N and P. Improved fallows of N-fixing legumes such as Tephrosia and Sesbania offer options for improving soil fertility particularly N supply. The interactions of Tephrosia fallows and inorganic fertilizers on soil properties, N uptake, and maize yields were evaluated at Chitedze Research Station in Malawi. The results indicated that the level of organic matter and pH increased in all the treatments except for the control. Total N remained almost unchanged while available P decreased in all plots amended with T. vogelii but increased in T. candida plots where inorganic P was applied. Exchangeable K increased in all the plots irrespective of the type of amendment. The interaction of N and P fertilizers with T. vogelii fallows significantly increased the grain yield. The treatment that received 45 kg N ha−1 and 20 kg P ha−1 produced significantly higher grain yields (6.8 t ha−1 than all the other treatments except where 68 kg N ha−1 and 30 kg P ha−1 were applied which gave 6.5 t ha−1 of maize grain. T. candida fallows alone or in combination with N and P fertilizers did not significantly affect grain yield. However, T. candida fallows alone can raise maize grain yield by 300% over the no-input control. Based on these results we conclude that high quality residues such as T. candida and T. vogelii can be used as sources of nutrients to improve crop yields and soil fertility in N-limited soils. However, inorganic P fertilizer is needed due to the low soil available P levels.

  15. Improving the management of infertile acid soils in Southeast Asia: The approach of the IBSRAM Acid-Soils network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lefroy, R.D.B.

    2000-01-01

    The IBSRAM ASIALAND Management of Acid Soils network aims to improve the understanding of the broad range of biophysical and socio-economic production limitations on infertile acid soils of Southeast Asia, and to lead to development and implementation of sustainable land-management strategies for these important marginal areas. The main activities of the network are in Indonesia, Myanmar, Philippines, and Vietnam, with associated activity in Thailand, and minor involvement in Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, and Malaysia. The main experimental focus is through researcher-managed on-farm trials, to improve the management of phosphorus nutrition with inorganic and organic amendments. A generic design is used across the eight well characterised sites that form the core of the network. The results will be analysed across time and across sites. Improved methods for laboratory analyses, experimental management, socio-economic data collection, and data analysis and interpretation are critical components. Three important initiatives are associated with the core activities. These aim to establish a broader network on maintenance of quality laboratory analyses, to assess the potential for implementation of improved strategies through farmer-managed on-farm trials, and to improve our understanding of, and ways of estimating, nutrient budgets for diverse farming systems. (author)

  16. Improvement of Characteristics of Clayey Soil Mixed with Randomly Distributed Natural Fibers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maity, J.; Chattopadhyay, B. C.; Mukherjee, S. P.

    2017-11-01

    In subgrade construction for flexible road pavement, properties of clayey soils available locally can be improved by providing randomly distributed fibers in the soil. The fibers added in subgrade constructions are expected to provide better compact interlocking system between the fiber and the soil grain, greater resistance to deformation and quicker dissipation of pore water pressure, thus helping consolidation and strengthening. Many natural fibers like jute, coir, sabai grass etc. which are economical and eco-friendly, are grown in abundance in India. If suitable they can be used as additive material in the subgrade soil to result in increase in strength and decrease in deformability. Such application will also reduce the cost of construction of roads, by providing lesser thickness of pavement layer. In this paper, the efficacy of using natural jute, coir or sabai grass fibers with locally available clayey soil has been studied. A series of Standard Proctor test, Soaked and Unsoaked California Bearing Ratio (CBR) test, and Unconfined Compressive Strength test were done on locally available clayey soil mixed with different types of natural fiber for various length and proportion to study the improvement of strength properties of fiber-soil composites placed at optimum moisture content. From the test results, it was observed that there was a substantial increase in CBR value for the clayey soil when mixed with increasing percentage of all three types of randomly distributed natural fibers up to 2% of the dry weight of soil. The CBR attains maximum value when the length for all types of fibers mixed with the clay taken in this study, attains a value of 10 mm.

  17. Cover crops and crop residue management under no-till systems improve soils and environmental quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Sandeep; Wegner, Brianna; Vahyala, Ibrahim; Osborne, Shannon; Schumacher, Thomas; Lehman, Michael

    2015-04-01

    Crop residue harvest is a common practice in the Midwestern USA for the ethanol production. However, excessive removal of crop residues from the soil surface contributes to the degradation of important soil quality indicators such as soil organic carbon (SOC). Addition of a cover crop may help to mitigate these negative effects. The present study was set up to assess the impacts of corn (Zea mays L.) residue removal and cover crops on various soil quality indicators and surface greenhouse gas (GHG) fluxes. The study was being conducted on plots located at the North Central Agricultural Research Laboratory (NCARL) in Brookings, South Dakota, USA. Three plots of a corn and soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr.) rotation under a no-till (NT) system are being monitored for soils and surface gas fluxes. Each plot has three residue removal (high residue removal, HRR; medium residue removal, MRR; and low residue removal, LRR) treatments and two cover crops (cover crops and no cover crops) treatments. Both corn and soybean are represented every year. Gas flux measurements were taken weekly using a closed static chamber method. Data show that residue removal significantly impacted soil quality indicators while more time was needed for an affect from cover crop treatments to be noticed. The LRR treatment resulted in higher SOC concentrations, increased aggregate stability, and increased microbial activity. The LRR treatment also increased soil organic matter (SOM) and particulate organic matter (POM) concentrations. Cover crops used in HRR (high corn residue removal) improved SOC (27 g kg-1) by 6% compared to that without cover crops (25.4 g kg-1). Cover crops significantly impacted POM concentration directly after the residue removal treatments were applied in 2012. CO2 fluxes were observed to increase as temperature increased, while N2O fluxes increased as soil moisture increased. CH4 fluxes were responsive to both increases in temperature and moisture. On average, soils under

  18. New instruments for soil physics class: Improving the laboratory and field seminars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klipa, Vladimir; Jankovec, Jakub; Snehota, Michal

    2014-05-01

    Teaching soil science and soil physics is an important part of the curriculum of many programs with focus on technical and natural sciences. Courses of soil science and namely soil physics have a long tradition at the faculty of Civil Engineering of the Czech Technical University in Prague. Students receive the theoretical foundations about soil classification, soil physics, soil chemistry and soil hydraulic characteristics in the course. In practical seminars students perform measurements of physical, hydraulic and chemical characteristics of soils, thus a comprehensive survey of soil is done in the given site. So far, students had the opportunity to use old, manually operated instrumentation. The project aims to improve the attractiveness of soil physics course and to extend the practical skills of students by introducing new tasks and by involving modern automated equipment. New instruments were purchased with the support of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of the Czech Republic under the project FRVS No. 1162/2013 G1. Specifically, two tensiometers T8 with multi-functional handheld read-out unit (UMS, GmbH) and manual Mini Disk Infiltrometer (Decagon Devices, Inc.) were purchased and incorporated into the course. In addition, newly designed MultiDisk the automated mini disk Infiltrometer (CTU in Prague) and combined temperature and soil moisture TDT sensor TMS 2 (TOMST®, s.r.o.), were made freely available for soil physics classes and included into the courses. Online tutorials and instructional videos were developed. Detailed multimedia teaching materials were introduced so that students are able to work more independently. Students will practice operating the digital tensiometer T8 with integrated temperature sensor and manual Mini Disk Infiltrometer (diameter disk: 4.4 cm, suction range: 0.5 to 7.0 cm of suction) and MultiDisk the automated mini disk Infiltrometer (see Klipa et al., EGU2014-7230) and combined temperature and soil moisture TDT

  19. SOIL MOISTURE SPACE-TIME ANALYSIS TO SUPPORT IMPROVED CROP MANAGEMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno Montoani Silva

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The knowledge of the water content in the soil profile is essential for an efficient management of crop growth and development. This work aimed to use geostatistical techniques in a spatio-temporal study of soil moisture in an Oxisol in order to provide that information for improved crop management. Data were collected in a coffee crop area at São Roque de Minas, in the upper São Francisco River basin, MG state, Brazil. The soil moisture was measured with a multi-sensor capacitance (MCP probe at 10-, 20-, 30-, 40-, 60- and 100-cm depths between March and December, 2010. After adjusting the spherical semivariogram model using ordinary least squares, best model, the values were interpolated by kriging in order to have a continuous surface relating depth x time (CSDT and the soil water availability to plant (SWAP. The results allowed additional insight on the dynamics of soil water and its availability to plant, and pointed to the effects of climate on the soil water content. These results also allowed identifying when and where there was greater water consumption by the plants, and the soil layers where water was available and potentially explored by the plant root system.

  20. Improvement of Shear Strength of Sandy Soil by Cement Grout with Fly Ash

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haifaa Abdulrasool Ali

    2018-12-01

    Full Text Available The effects of the permeation cement grout with fly ash on the sandy soil skeleton were studied in the present work in two phase; first phase the shear strength parameters, and the second phase effect of these grouted materials on volume grouted zone by injection (51 cm³ of slurry in sandy soil placed in steel cylinder model with dimension 15 cm in diameter and 30 cm in height. The soil sample was obtained from Karbala city and it is classified as poorly graded sand (SP according to USCS. The soil samples were improved by cement grout with three percentages weight of water cement ratio (w:c; (0.1w:0.9c, 0.8w:0.2c, and 0.7w:0.3c, while the soil samples were dehydrated for one day curing time. Fly ash class (F was used with cement grout as filler material; it was added to the mixture as a replacement material for cement in weight percentages; 10%, 25% and 40%. According to the results of tests, both shear strength and approximate volume of the effective grouted zone for treated samples soil with cement grout was increased when the water cement ratio decreased. Fly ash with cement grout needs to increase the water demand for the grout mixing to give best results in both shear strength and filling the soil voids.

  1. between and betwixt soil fertility improvement and disease ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    eobe

    Thus, the use of fibre and liquor from anaerobic digestion has led to improved fertilizer utilization and therefore less chemical consumption in cropping systems [3]. ... better mixing. The tank was air tight and is clearly placed above the ground level and outside the shed where it is exposed to the sunlight for partial heating.

  2. Improvement of red pepper yield and soil environment by summer catch aquatic crops in greenhouses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, X. F.; Wang, L. Z.; Peng, J.; Wang, G. L.; Guo, X. S.; Wen, T. G.; Gu, D. L.; Wang, W. Z.; Wu, C. W.

    2016-08-01

    To investigate effects of the rotation of summer catch crops on remediation retrogressed soils in continuous cropping, a field experiment was conducted. Rice, water spinach, or cress were selected as summer catch crops; bare fallow during summer fallow was used as the control group. Results showed that aquatic crops grown in summer fallow period could effectively reduce soil bulk density and pH, facilitate soil nutrient release, and improve soil physical and chemical properties compared with those grown in fallow period. Paddy-upland rotation could improve soil microbial members and increase bacterial and actinomycete populations; by contrast, paddy-upland rotation could reduce fungal populations and enhance bacterium-to-fungus ratio. Paddy-upland rotation could also actively promote activities of soil enzymes, such as urease, phosphatase, invertase, and catalase. The proposed paddy-upland rotation significantly affected the growth of red pepper; the yield and quality of the grown red pepper were enhanced. Summer catch crops, such as rice, water spinach, and cress significantly increased pepper yield in the following growing season by 15.4%, 10.2% and 14.0%, respectively, compared with those grown in fallow treatment. Therefore, the proposed paddy-upland crop rotation could be a useful method to alleviate continuous cropping problems involved in cultivating red pepper in greenhouses.

  3. Practical improvements in soil redox potential (Eh) measurement for characterisation of soil properties. Application for comparison of conventional and conservation agriculture cropping systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Husson, Olivier, E-mail: Olivier.husson@cirad.fr [CIRAD/PERSYST/UPR 115 AIDA and AfricaRice Centre, 01 BP 2031 Cotonou (Benin); Husson, Benoit, E-mail: bhusson@ideeaquaculture.com [IDEEAQUACULTURE, Parc Euromédecine 2, 39 Rue Jean Giroux, 34080 Montpellier (France); Brunet, Alexandre, E-mail: brunet.alexandre@outlook.com [CIRAD/US 49 Analyse, Avenue Agropolis, TA B-49/01, 34398 Montpellier Cedex (France); Babre, Daniel, E-mail: Daniel.babre@cirad.fr [CIRAD/US 49 Analyse, Avenue Agropolis, TA B-49/01, 34398 Montpellier Cedex (France); Alary, Karine, E-mail: Karine.alary@cirad.fr [CIRAD/US 49 Analyse, Avenue Agropolis, TA B-49/01, 34398 Montpellier Cedex (France); Sarthou, Jean-Pierre, E-mail: sarthou@ensat.fr [ENSAT/INRA/INP UMR AGIR. BP 52627, Chemin de Borde Rouge, 31326 Castanet-Tolosan Cedex (France); Charpentier, Hubert, E-mail: Charpentier.hub@wanadoo.fr [La Boisfarderie, Brives 36100 (France); Durand, Michel, E-mail: earldeslacs@orange.fr [Le Cazals, Castanet 81 150 (France); Benada, Jaroslav, E-mail: benada@vukrom.cz [Agrotest fyto, Kromeriz Institute, Havlíckova 2787, 76701 Kromeriz (Czech Republic); Henry, Marc, E-mail: henry@unistra.fr [UMR CNRS/UdS 7140, Université de Strasbourg, Institut Le Bel, 4, rue Blaise Pascal, CS 90032, Strasbourg 67081 (France)

    2016-02-04

    The soil redox potential (Eh) can provide essential information to characterise soil conditions. In practice, however, numerous problems may arise regarding: (i) Eh determination in soils, especially aerobic soils, e.g. variations in the instrumentation and methodology for Eh measurement, high spatial and temporal Eh variability in soils, irreversibility of the redox reaction at the surface electrode, chemical disequilibrium; and (ii) measurement interpretation. This study aimed at developing a standardised method for redox potential measurement in soils, in order to use Eh as a soil quality indicator. This paper presents practical improvements in soil Eh measurement, especially regarding the control of electromagnetic perturbations, electrode choice and preparation, soil sample preparation (drying procedure) and soil:water extraction rate. The repeatability and reproducibility of the measurement method developed are highlighted. The use of Eh corrected at pH7, pe+pH or rH{sub 2}, which are equivalent notions, is proposed to facilitate interpretation of the results. The application of this Eh measurement method allows characterisation of soil conditions with sufficient repeatability, reproducibility and accuracy to demonstrate that conservation agriculture systems positively alter the protonic and electronic balance of soil as compared to conventional systems. - Highlights: • Electromagnetic fields can dramatically perturb soil Eh measurement. • Our method overcomes the main difficulties in soil Eh measurement. • Accurate and reproducible measurement of mean soil Eh are achieved. • Eh{sub pH7}, pe+pH and rH{sub 2} are equivalent notions characterising electron activity. • Agricultural practices alter soil protonic and electronic characteristics.

  4. Non-Participatory Intervention in a Traditional Participatory Organization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jønsson, Thomas; Jeppesen, Hans Jeppe

    2009-01-01

    The aim of the present study is to investigate employee attitudes to non-participatory (topdown) changes in an organizational environment that has hitherto been participatory.Until now, research has traditionally investigated the effects of increased organizational influence on employee attitudes...... and behaviour. This study takes the opposite approach by looking at a decrease in influence. The study was undertaken in a production company with 480 employees. The work was organized in production lines and semi-autonomous working groups. Data was compiled via interviews with selected employees from three...... kinds of production areas: Areas that had implemented 1) all of the  planned changes; 2) some of the changes; or 3) only a few of the changes. The results show that the employees’ reactions to the non-participatory change process addressed the decrease of influence and the consequences thereof; i...

  5. The notion of participatory democracy in relation to local ward committees: The distribution of power

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leepo J. Modise

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available This article comprises four important parts: first, the two important components of democracy, namely participatory and non-participatory or representative democracy will be discussed with special reference to the distribution of powers. Second, it will address the roles and responsibilities of ward committees within the democratic society. Third, the ethical question of the basis of the committee members’ capacity to serve on the ward committees in relation to coercive leadership (tyranny of the majority will be investigated. Fourth, the theological standpoint on the distribution of powers or participatory democracy and the role of the church to improve participatory democracy will be discussed. The research question is the following: What can be done by the country to improve participatory democracy in South Africa, through engagement with ward committees?

  6. Trichoderma Biofertilizer Links to Altered Soil Chemistry, Altered Microbial Communities, and Improved Grassland Biomass

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fengge Zhang

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available In grasslands, forage and livestock production results in soil nutrient deficits as grasslands typically receive no nutrient inputs, leading to a loss of grassland biomass. The application of mature compost has been shown to effectively increase grassland nutrient availability. However, research on fertilization regime influence and potential microbial ecological regulation mechanisms are rarely conducted in grassland soil. We conducted a two-year experiment in meadow steppe grasslands, focusing on above- and belowground consequences of organic or Trichoderma biofertilizer applications and potential soil microbial ecological mechanisms underlying soil chemistry and microbial community responses. Grassland biomass significantly (p = 0.019 increased following amendment with 9,000 kg ha−1 of Trichoderma biofertilizer (composted cattle manure + inoculum compared with other assessed organic or biofertilizer rates, except for BOF3000 (fertilized with 3,000 kg ha−1 biofertilizer. This rate of Trichoderma biofertilizer treatment increased soil antifungal compounds that may suppress pathogenic fungi, potentially partially responsible for improved grassland biomass. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling (NMDS revealed soil chemistry and fungal communities were all separated by different fertilization regime. Trichoderma biofertilizer (9,000 kg ha−1 increased relative abundances of Archaeorhizomyces and Trichoderma while decreasing Ophiosphaerella. Trichoderma can improve grassland biomass, while Ophiosphaerella has the opposite effect as it may secrete metabolites causing grass necrosis. Correlations between soil properties and microbial genera showed plant-available phosphorus may influence grassland biomass by increasing Archaeorhizomyces and Trichoderma while reducing Ophiosphaerella. According to our structural equation modeling (SEM, Trichoderma abundance was the primary contributor to aboveground grassland biomass. Our results suggest Trichoderma

  7. Trichoderma Biofertilizer Links to Altered Soil Chemistry, Altered Microbial Communities, and Improved Grassland Biomass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Fengge; Huo, Yunqian; Cobb, Adam B; Luo, Gongwen; Zhou, Jiqiong; Yang, Gaowen; Wilson, Gail W T; Zhang, Yingjun

    2018-01-01

    In grasslands, forage and livestock production results in soil nutrient deficits as grasslands typically receive no nutrient inputs, leading to a loss of grassland biomass. The application of mature compost has been shown to effectively increase grassland nutrient availability. However, research on fertilization regime influence and potential microbial ecological regulation mechanisms are rarely conducted in grassland soil. We conducted a two-year experiment in meadow steppe grasslands, focusing on above- and belowground consequences of organic or Trichoderma biofertilizer applications and potential soil microbial ecological mechanisms underlying soil chemistry and microbial community responses. Grassland biomass significantly ( p = 0.019) increased following amendment with 9,000 kg ha -1 of Trichoderma biofertilizer (composted cattle manure + inoculum) compared with other assessed organic or biofertilizer rates, except for BOF3000 (fertilized with 3,000 kg ha -1 biofertilizer). This rate of Trichoderma biofertilizer treatment increased soil antifungal compounds that may suppress pathogenic fungi, potentially partially responsible for improved grassland biomass. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) revealed soil chemistry and fungal communities were all separated by different fertilization regime. Trichoderma biofertilizer (9,000 kg ha -1 ) increased relative abundances of Archaeorhizomyces and Trichoderma while decreasing Ophiosphaerella . Trichoderma can improve grassland biomass, while Ophiosphaerella has the opposite effect as it may secrete metabolites causing grass necrosis. Correlations between soil properties and microbial genera showed plant-available phosphorus may influence grassland biomass by increasing Archaeorhizomyces and Trichoderma while reducing Ophiosphaerella . According to our structural equation modeling (SEM), Trichoderma abundance was the primary contributor to aboveground grassland biomass. Our results suggest Trichoderma

  8. Improvement of Soil Biology Characteristics at Paddy Field by System of Rice Intensification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Widyatmani Sih Dewi

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the research was to test the System of Rice Intensification (SRI method in improving the biological properties of paddy soil. The indicators of improvement were measured by the number of earthworm feces (cast, and the population of some microbial and nutrient content in the cast. The experiments were performed by comparing the three methods, namely: (1 SRI, (2 semi-conventional, and (3 conventional, using Randomized Completely Block Design. Each treatment was repeated nine times. The experiments were performed in the paddy fields belonging to farmers in Sukoharjo, Central Java. The result showed that the SRI (application of 1 tons ha-1 of vermicompost + 50% of inorganic fertilizer dosage tends to increase the number of earthworms cast. It is an indicator of earthworm activity in soil. Earthworms cast contains more phosphate solubilizing bacteria (12.98 x 1010cfu and N content (1.23% compared to its surrounding soil. There is a close functional relation between earthworms cast with total tiller number. SRI method is better than the other two methods to improve the biological characteristics of paddy soil that has the potential to maintain the sustainability of soil productivity.

  9. Biochar from sugarcane filtercake reduces soil CO2 emissions relative to raw residue and improves water retention and nutrient availability in a highly-weathered tropical soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eykelbosh, Angela Joy; Johnson, Mark S; Santos de Queiroz, Edmar; Dalmagro, Higo José; Guimarães Couto, Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    In Brazil, the degradation of nutrient-poor Ferralsols limits productivity and drives agricultural expansion into pristine areas. However, returning agricultural residues to the soil in a stabilized form may offer opportunities for maintaining or improving soil quality, even under conditions that typically promote carbon loss. We examined the use of biochar made from filtercake (a byproduct of sugarcane processing) on the physicochemical properties of a cultivated tropical soil. Filtercake was pyrolyzed at 575°C for 3 h yielding a biochar with increased surface area and porosity compared to the raw filtercake. Filtercake biochar was primarily composed of aromatic carbon, with some residual cellulose and hemicellulose. In a three-week laboratory incubation, CO2 effluxes from a highly weathered Ferralsol soil amended with 5% biochar (dry weight, d.w.) were roughly four-fold higher than the soil-only control, but 23-fold lower than CO2 effluxes from soil amended with 5% (d.w.) raw filtercake. We also applied vinasse, a carbon-rich liquid waste from bioethanol production typically utilized as a fertilizer on sugarcane soils, to filtercake- and biochar-amended soils. Total CO2 efflux from the biochar-amended soil in response to vinasse application was only 5% of the efflux when vinasse was applied to soil amended with raw filtercake. Furthermore, mixtures of 5 or 10% biochar (d.w.) in this highly weathered tropical soil significantly increased water retention within the plant-available range and also improved nutrient availability. Accordingly, application of sugarcane filtercake as biochar, with or without vinasse application, may better satisfy soil management objectives than filtercake applied to soils in its raw form, and may help to build soil carbon stocks in sugarcane-cultivating regions.

  10. Biochar from Sugarcane Filtercake Reduces Soil CO2 Emissions Relative to Raw Residue and Improves Water Retention and Nutrient Availability in a Highly-Weathered Tropical Soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eykelbosh, Angela Joy; Johnson, Mark S.; Santos de Queiroz, Edmar; Dalmagro, Higo José; Guimarães Couto, Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    In Brazil, the degradation of nutrient-poor Ferralsols limits productivity and drives agricultural expansion into pristine areas. However, returning agricultural residues to the soil in a stabilized form may offer opportunities for maintaining or improving soil quality, even under conditions that typically promote carbon loss. We examined the use of biochar made from filtercake (a byproduct of sugarcane processing) on the physicochemical properties of a cultivated tropical soil. Filtercake was pyrolyzed at 575°C for 3 h yielding a biochar with increased surface area and porosity compared to the raw filtercake. Filtercake biochar was primarily composed of aromatic carbon, with some residual cellulose and hemicellulose. In a three-week laboratory incubation, CO2 effluxes from a highly weathered Ferralsol soil amended with 5% biochar (dry weight, d.w.) were roughly four-fold higher than the soil-only control, but 23-fold lower than CO2 effluxes from soil amended with 5% (d.w.) raw filtercake. We also applied vinasse, a carbon-rich liquid waste from bioethanol production typically utilized as a fertilizer on sugarcane soils, to filtercake- and biochar-amended soils. Total CO2 efflux from the biochar-amended soil in response to vinasse application was only 5% of the efflux when vinasse was applied to soil amended with raw filtercake. Furthermore, mixtures of 5 or 10% biochar (d.w.) in this highly weathered tropical soil significantly increased water retention within the plant-available range and also improved nutrient availability. Accordingly, application of sugarcane filtercake as biochar, with or without vinasse application, may better satisfy soil management objectives than filtercake applied to soils in its raw form, and may help to build soil carbon stocks in sugarcane-cultivating regions. PMID:24897522

  11. Biochar from sugarcane filtercake reduces soil CO2 emissions relative to raw residue and improves water retention and nutrient availability in a highly-weathered tropical soil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angela Joy Eykelbosh

    Full Text Available In Brazil, the degradation of nutrient-poor Ferralsols limits productivity and drives agricultural expansion into pristine areas. However, returning agricultural residues to the soil in a stabilized form may offer opportunities for maintaining or improving soil quality, even under conditions that typically promote carbon loss. We examined the use of biochar made from filtercake (a byproduct of sugarcane processing on the physicochemical properties of a cultivated tropical soil. Filtercake was pyrolyzed at 575°C for 3 h yielding a biochar with increased surface area and porosity compared to the raw filtercake. Filtercake biochar was primarily composed of aromatic carbon, with some residual cellulose and hemicellulose. In a three-week laboratory incubation, CO2 effluxes from a highly weathered Ferralsol soil amended with 5% biochar (dry weight, d.w. were roughly four-fold higher than the soil-only control, but 23-fold lower than CO2 effluxes from soil amended with 5% (d.w. raw filtercake. We also applied vinasse, a carbon-rich liquid waste from bioethanol production typically utilized as a fertilizer on sugarcane soils, to filtercake- and biochar-amended soils. Total CO2 efflux from the biochar-amended soil in response to vinasse application was only 5% of the efflux when vinasse was applied to soil amended with raw filtercake. Furthermore, mixtures of 5 or 10% biochar (d.w. in this highly weathered tropical soil significantly increased water retention within the plant-available range and also improved nutrient availability. Accordingly, application of sugarcane filtercake as biochar, with or without vinasse application, may better satisfy soil management objectives than filtercake applied to soils in its raw form, and may help to build soil carbon stocks in sugarcane-cultivating regions.

  12. Cultivating Communication: Participatory Approaches in Land Restoration in Iceland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brita Berglund

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Stakeholder participation in environmental management is increasing. Staff of environmental agencies, however, often lack training in communication and in conducting participatory processes. Their interpretation of "participation" is of interest because interpretation affects how participation is practiced. We explored how participation was interpreted within the Soil Conservation Service of Iceland and how the interpretation affected how participation was carried out in two land restoration projects. Our methods included semi-structured interviews with agency staff and involved stakeholders, participant observations, and document review. The findings showed that participation was seen as a method to accomplish the agency's tasks, and the focus was primarily on the outputs, or products, of the participatory processes. This interpretation worked well and created positive outcomes as long as process factors, such as interaction with other stakeholders and shared influence, were adequately attended to and joint gains were assured, but other stakeholders expressed dissatisfaction when they were not. We conclude that, although tangible outcomes are necessary for environmental agencies, maintaining a balance between product and process focus in participatory projects is important for optimal results. To increase their ability to deal with process factors, environmental agencies, and ultimately environmental management, would benefit from enhancing their personnel's understanding of participation, and capacity to conduct participatory processes. To facilitate participation, this understanding should also be integrated in the institutional framework the agencies work within.

  13. Digital publics and participatory education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian J. McNely

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available This article—a collaborative exploration between instructors, students, and members of the broader, digital classroom community—explores how the strategic incorporation of sociotechnical networks and digital technologies facilitates literate practices that extend the classroom in productive ways. The article builds toward coauthors’ reflective practices (Schön, 1983, or “participatory perspectives”, had during an undergraduate English Studies course at a mid-sized, public, American university. Specifically, participants argue that these literate practices afforded not just information sharing, but the opening up of a traditional classroom to include broader digital publics and collaborative knowledge work (Spinuzzi, 2006. Toward this end, we ground literate practice in scholarship that attends to public writing in online spaces, and theoretically frame our argument using Jenkins et al.’s (2006 principles of participatory education. We then detail the specific curricular approach deliberately designed to create digitally connected publics and end with generalizable significance of coauthors’ participatory perspectives.

  14. Application of Mycorrhiza and Soil from a Permaculture System Improved Phosphorus Acquisition in Naranjilla.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Symanczik, Sarah; Gisler, Michelle; Thonar, Cécile; Schlaeppi, Klaus; Van der Heijden, Marcel; Kahmen, Ansgar; Boller, Thomas; Mäder, Paul

    2017-01-01

    Naranjilla ( Solanum quitoense ) is a perennial shrub plant mainly cultivated in Ecuador, Colombia, and Central America where it represents an important cash crop. Current cultivation practices not only cause deforestation and large-scale soil degradation but also make plants highly susceptible to pests and diseases. The use of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) can offer a possibility to overcome these problems. AMF can act beneficially in various ways, for example by improving plant nutrition and growth, water relations, soil structure and stability and protection against biotic and abiotic stresses. In this study, the impact of AMF inoculation on growth and nutrition parameters of naranjilla has been assessed. For inoculation three European reference AMF strains ( Rhizoglomus irregulare , Claroideoglomus claroideum , and Cetraspora helvetica ) and soils originating from three differently managed naranjilla plantations in Ecuador (conventional, organic, and permaculture) have been used. This allowed for a comparison of the performance of exotic AMF strains (reference strains) versus native consortia contained in the three soils used as inocula. To study fungal communities present in the three soils, trap cultures have been established using naranjilla as host plant. The community structures of AMF and other fungi inhabiting the roots of trap cultured naranjilla were assessed using next generation sequencing (NGS) methods. The growth response experiment has shown that two of the three reference AMF strains, a mixture of the three and soil from a permaculture site led to significantly better acquisition of phosphorus (up to 104%) compared to uninoculated controls. These results suggest that the use of AMF strains and local soils as inoculants represent a valid approach to improve nutrient uptake efficiency of naranjilla and consequently to reduce inputs of mineral fertilizers in the cultivation process. Improved phosphorus acquisition after inoculation with

  15. Application of Mycorrhiza and Soil from a Permaculture System Improved Phosphorus Acquisition in Naranjilla

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Symanczik

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Naranjilla (Solanum quitoense is a perennial shrub plant mainly cultivated in Ecuador, Colombia, and Central America where it represents an important cash crop. Current cultivation practices not only cause deforestation and large-scale soil degradation but also make plants highly susceptible to pests and diseases. The use of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF can offer a possibility to overcome these problems. AMF can act beneficially in various ways, for example by improving plant nutrition and growth, water relations, soil structure and stability and protection against biotic and abiotic stresses. In this study, the impact of AMF inoculation on growth and nutrition parameters of naranjilla has been assessed. For inoculation three European reference AMF strains (Rhizoglomus irregulare, Claroideoglomus claroideum, and Cetraspora helvetica and soils originating from three differently managed naranjilla plantations in Ecuador (conventional, organic, and permaculture have been used. This allowed for a comparison of the performance of exotic AMF strains (reference strains versus native consortia contained in the three soils used as inocula. To study fungal communities present in the three soils, trap cultures have been established using naranjilla as host plant. The community structures of AMF and other fungi inhabiting the roots of trap cultured naranjilla were assessed using next generation sequencing (NGS methods. The growth response experiment has shown that two of the three reference AMF strains, a mixture of the three and soil from a permaculture site led to significantly better acquisition of phosphorus (up to 104% compared to uninoculated controls. These results suggest that the use of AMF strains and local soils as inoculants represent a valid approach to improve nutrient uptake efficiency of naranjilla and consequently to reduce inputs of mineral fertilizers in the cultivation process. Improved phosphorus acquisition after inoculation with

  16. Technologies for improved soil carbon management and environmental quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reicosky, D.C. [USDA-Agricultural Research Service, Morris, MN (United States)

    1997-12-31

    The objective of this paper is to create an environmental awareness of and to provide insight into the future balance of environment and economic issues in developing new technologies that benefit the farmer, the public, and agricultural product sales. Agricultural impacts of tillage-induced CO{sub 2} losses are addressed along with new and existing technologies to minimize tillage-induced flow of CO{sub 2} to the atmosphere, Emphasis is placed on the carbon cycle and the cost of environmental damage to illustrate the need for improved technologies leading to reduced environmental impacts by business ventures. New technologies and concepts related to methods of tillage and stover management for carbon sequestration with the agricultural production systems are presented. 16 refs., 3 figs.

  17. Participatory action research in corrections: The HITEC 2 program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherniack, Martin; Dussetschleger, Jeffrey; Dugan, Alicia; Farr, Dana; Namazi, Sara; El Ghaziri, Mazen; Henning, Robert

    2016-03-01

    HITEC 2 (Health Improvement through Employee Control 2) is the follow-up to HITEC, a participatory action research (PAR) program that integrates health and work conditions interventions designed by the workforce. HITEC 2 compares intervention programs between two correctional sites, one using a pure workforce level design team and the other using a more structured and time delineated labor-management kaizen effectiveness team. HITEC 2 utilizes a seven step participatory Intervention Design and Analysis Scorecard (IDEAS) for planning interventions. Consistent with PAR, process and intervention efficacy measures are developed and administered through workforce representation. Participation levels, robustness of participatory structures and sophistication of interventions have increased at each measured interval. Health comparisons between 2008 and 2013 showed increased hypertension, static weight maintenance, and increased 'readiness to change'. The PAR approaches are robust and sustained. Their long-term effectiveness in this population is not yet clear. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society. All rights reserved.

  18. Improved or Unimproved Urban Areas Effect on Soil and Water Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sally D. Logsdon

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Construction in urban areas usually results in compacted soil, which restricts plant growth and infiltration. Nutrients may be lost in storm runoff water and sediment. The purpose of this study was to determine if existing lawns benefit from aeration and surface compost additions without the negative impact of nutrient loss in runoff. Four sets of lawns were compared, with or without compost plus aeration, as a paired comparison. Surface bulk density was significantly reduced in the treated lawns (1.32 versus 1.42 Mg·m−3. Visual evaluation of soil structure showed improvement in the treated lawns. Of fifteen measurement dates over four years, four dates showed significantly higher surface soil water contents in the treated lawns compared with the untreated lawns. When compared over time, three of the four treated lawns had significantly higher soil water content than the untreated lawns. Nutrient concentrations in rainfall simulator runoff were not significantly different between treated and control lawns, which showed that compost did not negatively impact water quality. Compost and aeration helped restore soil quality for urban soils of recent construction.

  19. Genetic engineering in the improvement of plants for phytoremediation of metal polluted soils.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Karenlampi, S.; Schat, H.; Vangronsveld, J.; Verkley, J.A.C.; van der Lelie, D.; Mergeay, M.; Tervahauta, A.I.

    2000-01-01

    Metal concentrations in soils are locally quite high, and are still increasing due to many human activities, leading to elevated risk for health and the environment. Phytoremediation may offer a viable solution to this problem, and the approach is gaining increasing interest. Improvement of plants

  20. Applicability of recycled aggregates in concrete piles for soft soil improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medeiros-Junior, Ronaldo A; Balestra, Carlos Et; Lima, Maryangela G

    2017-01-01

    The expressive generation of construction and demolition waste is stimulating several studies for reusing this material. The improvement of soft soils by concrete compaction piles has been widely applied for 40 years in some Brazilian cities. This technique is used to improve the bearing capacity of soft soils, allowing executing shallow foundations instead of deep foundations. The compaction piles use a high volume of material. This article explored the possibility of using recycled aggregates from construction waste to replace the natural aggregates in order to improve the bearing capacity of the soft soil, regarding its compressive strength. Construction wastes from different stages of a construction were used in order to make samples of concrete with recycled aggregates. The strength of concretes with natural aggregates was compared with the strength of concretes with recycled (fine and coarse) aggregates. Results show that all samples met the minimum compressive strength specified for compaction piles used to improve the bearing capacity of soft soils. The concrete with recycled aggregate from the structural stage had even higher resistances than the concrete with natural aggregates. This behaviour was attributed to the large amount of cementitious materials in the composition of this type of concrete. It was also observed that concrete with recycled fine aggregate has a superior resistance to concrete with recycled coarse aggregate.

  1. Integrating soil information into canopy sensor algorithms for improved corn nitrogen rate recommendation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crop canopy sensors have proven effective at determining site-specific nitrogen (N) needs, but several Midwest states use different algorithms to predict site-specific N need. The objective of this research was to determine if soil information can be used to improve the Missouri canopy sensor algori...

  2. An improved method for seed-bank analysis : Seedling emergence after removing the soil by sieving

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    ter Heerdt, G.N.J.; Bekker, R.M.; Bakker, J.P.; Verweij, G.L.

    1. The seedling emergence method for assessing the size of the seed bank is improved by washing soil samples on a fine sieve and spreading the thus concentrated samples in a 3-5 mm thick layer on sterilized potting compost. 2. The method largely increases the number of seedlings that emerge as

  3. Soil quality improvement for crop production in semi-arid West Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ouédraogo, E.

    2004-01-01

    Soil quality maintenance and crop production improvement in semi-arid West Africa require appropriate cropping technologies, which are ecologically sound and economically viable. Thus, on-farm and on-station experiments have been carried out on the central plateau and in the south of Burkina Faso

  4. How to make participatory technology assessment in agriculture more 'participatory'

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tavella, Elena

    2016-01-01

    the cultivation of new GM plants in Denmark. Furthermore, through this illustration, the term Participatory Technology Assessment (PTA) is redefined, thereby suggesting two additional aspects to assessing new technologies – following and evaluating policy making – to be considered in the conduct of PTA....

  5. The impact of participatory and non-participatory evaluations on ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... in terms of evaluation, a participatory methodology better enabled the internalisation of those objectives, through activities such as focus group discussions. Keywords: Africa, behaviour, community empowerment, HIV/AIDS interventions, monitoring and evaluation. African Journal of AIDS Research 2005, 4(2): 103–113 ...

  6. Can next-generation soil data products improve soil moisture modelling at the continental scale? An assessment using a new microclimate package for the R programming environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kearney, Michael R.; Maino, James L.

    2018-06-01

    Accurate models of soil moisture are vital for solving core problems in meteorology, hydrology, agriculture and ecology. The capacity for soil moisture modelling is growing rapidly with the development of high-resolution, continent-scale gridded weather and soil data together with advances in modelling methods. In particular, the GlobalSoilMap.net initiative represents next-generation, depth-specific gridded soil products that may substantially increase soil moisture modelling capacity. Here we present an implementation of Campbell's infiltration and redistribution model within the NicheMapR microclimate modelling package for the R environment, and use it to assess the predictive power provided by the GlobalSoilMap.net product Soil and Landscape Grid of Australia (SLGA, ∼100 m) as well as the coarser resolution global product SoilGrids (SG, ∼250 m). Predictions were tested in detail against 3 years of root-zone (3-75 cm) soil moisture observation data from 35 monitoring sites within the OzNet project in Australia, with additional tests of the finalised modelling approach against cosmic-ray neutron (CosmOz, 0-50 cm, 9 sites from 2011 to 2017) and satellite (ASCAT, 0-2 cm, continent-wide from 2007 to 2009) observations. The model was forced by daily 0.05° (∼5 km) gridded meteorological data. The NicheMapR system predicted soil moisture to within experimental error for all data sets. Using the SLGA or the SG soil database, the OzNet soil moisture could be predicted with a root mean square error (rmse) of ∼0.075 m3 m-3 and a correlation coefficient (r) of 0.65 consistently through the soil profile without any parameter tuning. Soil moisture predictions based on the SLGA and SG datasets were ≈ 17% closer to the observations than when using a chloropleth-derived soil data set (Digital Atlas of Australian Soils), with the greatest improvements occurring for deeper layers. The CosmOz observations were predicted with similar accuracy (r = 0.76 and rmse of ∼0

  7. CONTRIBUTIONS TO IMPROVING CULTURE TEHNOLOGIES OF PEACHES GROWN ON SANDY SOILS THE SOUTH OF OLTENIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anica Durau

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Technological factors with major implications in obtaining high yields and quality in peaches grown on sandy soils are planting row distance and shape of the crown, soil maintenance system, chemical, organic and foliar fertilzation. A smal size combined with the flatening of the crowns of the tres alows a dense planting, also ensure proper mechanization of work and easy penetration of light to the leaves and fruits. Crown form vertical belt proved to be suitable for al planting distances studied, easily made and maintained, having fruit production ranged betwen 15.9 t / ha at a distance of 2 m, 10.3 t / ha at a distance of 2.5 m and 7.9 t / ha at a distance of 3 m. The state of soil nutrient supply influence sucesful peach crop on sandy soils. The fertilzer dose of technology to N10 P80 K10 kg s.a / ha production was 34.9 t / ha. Organic fertilzation also contributes to obtaining high yields of peach. In sandy soil conditions most fruit production of 9.6 t / ha was obtained by fertilzation with organic manure 60t/ha. Besides fertilzation, soil maintenance system is one important link in the technology peach crop on sandy soils. The results found that the biggest peach fruit production was obtained from field maintenance system black-8,2t/ha. Using technology in foliar peaches culture on sandy soils, is an important means of providing nutrients that lead to improved proceses of growth and fructification. The best way is with foliar fertilzation Folibor in dose 5l/ha, the production obtained was 12.4 t /ha.

  8. Reuse of Ablution Water to Improve Peat Soil Characteristics for Ornamental Landscape Plants Cultivation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radin Mohamed Radin Maya Saphira

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The present study aimed to reuse of ablution water for washing peat soil in order to reduce the concentrations of heavy metals in these soils which might effect negatively on the plant growth. The washing process design was similar to horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetlands (HSSFCW consist of layers of peat and sand soil and surrounded by gravel on both sides. Strelitzia sp. was used to detect the presence negative effect of the washing process on the morphological characteristics of the plants. The physical and chemical characteristics of ablution water was examined before and after the washing process by using Inductively Couple Plasma- Mass Spectrometer (ICP-MS Atomic Absorption Spectrometer (AAS. The characteristics of peat soil before and after the washing process were examined by using X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF. The results revealed that the percentage of FeO3in peat soil reduced from 45.80 to 1.01%. The percentage of SiO2 in sand soil dropped from 87.7 to 67.10%. Parameters of ablution water resulted from the washing process which including Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD5 and heavy metals have increased but still within the standard limits for the disposal of ablution water into the environment. No atrophy was observed in Strelitzia sp. leaves, indicating the ability of plant to grow normally. It can be concluded that the utilization of ablution water in the washing of peat soil has improve the characteristics of the soil without effect on their organic constitutes.

  9. [Improving Agricultural Safety of Soils Contaminated with Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons by In Situ Bioremediation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiao, Hai-huan; Pan, Jian-gang; Xu, Shena-jun; Bai, Zhi-hui; Wang, Dong; Huang, Zhan-bin

    2015-08-01

    In order to reduce the risk of enrichment of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in crops, reduce the potential hazards of food-sourced PAHs to human and increase the agricultural safety of PAHs contaminated soils, the bio-augmented removal of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) was investigated through in situ remediation by introducing Rhodobacter sphaeroides (RS) into the agricultural soil contaminated by PAHs. The 50-times diluted RS was sprayed on leaf surface (in area B) or irrigated to roots (in area D). The treatment of spraying water of the equal amount was taken as the control (A) and the wheat field without any treatment as the blank (CK). Treatments were conducted since wheat seeding. Soil and wheat samples were collected in the mature period to analyze the changes of community structure of the soil microorganisms and the concentration of PAHs in soils and investigate the strengthening and restoration effects of RS on PAHs contaminated soils. Compared to the CK Area, the areas B and D revealed that the variation ratio of phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) that were the biomarker of soil microorganisms was 29.6%, and the ratio of total PAHs removed was increased 1.59 times and 1.68 times, respectively. The dry weight of wheat grain of 50 spikes was increased by 8.95% and 12.5%, respectively, and the enrichment factor of total PAHs was decreased by 58.9% and 62.2% respectively in the wheat grains. All the results suggested that RS reduced enrichment of PAHs in wheat grains and increased wheat yield, which had great exploitation and utilization potentiality in repairing and improving the agricultural safety of the soils contaminated with PHAs.

  10. A participatory GIS approach to spatial modeling for slum upgrading ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The most prominent problem of rapid urbanism in Harare is the development of slums and Epworth is a notable example. The quality of planning and decision making in the participatory slum upgrading initiative can be sustainably improved by well managed processes of spatial and socio-economic data collection. More so ...

  11. Participatory GIS for resource management in Africa: Taking stock ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Participatory GIS for resource management in Africa: Taking stock. 25 avril 2016 ... Spatial decision-support tools hold considerable potential to contribute to sustainable resource management. By improving access to information ... Nombre d'entre nous qui résidons dans l'est du Canada avons l'impression qu'il n'y a pas eu.

  12. in_focus - Seeds that Give: Participatory Plant Breeding | IDRC ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    The top-down system of agricultural research, where farmers are seen merely ... to conserve agricultural diversity, improve crops, and produce food of quality for all. ... natural resource management, agricultural biodiversity, and participatory ... Birth registration is the basis for advancing gender equality and children's rights.

  13. [Functions of participatory ergonomics programs in reducing work-related musculoskeletal disorders].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, M J; Liu, J J; Yao, H Y

    2016-08-10

    Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are most commonly seen in all the occupational non-fatal injuries and illnesses for workers, especially those who are involved in labor-intensive industries. Participatory ergonomics is frequently used to prevent musculoskeletal disorders. This paper gives an overview of a historical perspective on the use of participatory ergonomics approach in reducing the health effects of labor-intensive industries. Progress, barriers and facilitators on the organization, implementation and evaluation of participatory ergonomics programs are studied. Participatory ergonomics seems a successful method to develop, prioritize measures to prevent MSDs. Participatory ergonomics can help industries reduce musculoskeletal injuries and disorders, improve workplace condition and promote health conditions of the workers.

  14. Soil-plant transfer models for metals to improve soil screening value guidelines valid for São Paulo, Brazil.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dos Santos-Araujo, Sabrina N; Swartjes, Frank A; Versluijs, Kees W; Moreno, Fabio Netto; Alleoni, Luís R F

    2017-01-01

    In Brazil, there is a lack of combined soil-plant data attempting to explain the influence of specific climate, soil conditions, and crop management on heavy metal uptake and accumulation by plants. As a consequence, soil-plant relationships to be used in risk assessments or for derivation of soil

  15. A Protocol for a Feasibility and Acceptability Study of a Participatory, Multi-Level, Dynamic Intervention in Urban Outreach Centers to Improve the Oral Health of Low-Income Chinese Americans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Northridge, Mary E; Metcalf, Sara S; Yi, Stella; Zhang, Qiuyi; Gu, Xiaoxi; Trinh-Shevrin, Chau

    2018-01-01

    While the US health care system has the capability to provide amazing treatment of a wide array of conditions, this care is not uniformly available to all population groups. Oral health care is one of the dimensions of the US health care delivery system in which striking disparities exist. More than half of the population does not visit a dentist each year. Improving access to oral health care is a critical and necessary first step to improving oral health outcomes and reducing disparities. Fluoride has contributed profoundly to the improved dental health of populations worldwide and is needed regularly throughout the life course to protect teeth against dental caries. To ensure additional gains in oral health, fluoride toothpaste should be used routinely at all ages. Evidence-based guidelines for annual dental visits and brushing teeth with fluoride toothpaste form the basis of this implementation science project that is intended to bridge the care gap for underserved Asian American populations by improving access to quality oral health care and enhancing effective oral health promotion strategies. The ultimate goal of this study is to provide information for the design and implementation of a randomized controlled trial of a participatory, multi-level, partnered (i.e., with community stakeholders) intervention to improve the oral and general health of low-income Chinese American adults. This study will evaluate the feasibility and acceptability of implementing a partnered intervention using remote data entry into an electronic health record (EHR) to improve access to oral health care and promote oral health. The research staff will survey a sample of Chinese American patients (planned n  = 90) screened at three outreach centers about their satisfaction with the partnered intervention. Providers (dentists and community health workers), research staff, administrators, site directors, and community advisory board members will participate in structured interviews

  16. A Protocol for a Feasibility and Acceptability Study of a Participatory, Multi-Level, Dynamic Intervention in Urban Outreach Centers to Improve the Oral Health of Low-Income Chinese Americans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary E. Northridge

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available IntroductionWhile the US health care system has the capability to provide amazing treatment of a wide array of conditions, this care is not uniformly available to all population groups. Oral health care is one of the dimensions of the US health care delivery system in which striking disparities exist. More than half of the population does not visit a dentist each year. Improving access to oral health care is a critical and necessary first step to improving oral health outcomes and reducing disparities. Fluoride has contributed profoundly to the improved dental health of populations worldwide and is needed regularly throughout the life course to protect teeth against dental caries. To ensure additional gains in oral health, fluoride toothpaste should be used routinely at all ages. Evidence-based guidelines for annual dental visits and brushing teeth with fluoride toothpaste form the basis of this implementation science project that is intended to bridge the care gap for underserved Asian American populations by improving access to quality oral health care and enhancing effective oral health promotion strategies. The ultimate goal of this study is to provide information for the design and implementation of a randomized controlled trial of a participatory, multi-level, partnered (i.e., with community stakeholders intervention to improve the oral and general health of low-income Chinese American adults.MethodsThis study will evaluate the feasibility and acceptability of implementing a partnered intervention using remote data entry into an electronic health record (EHR to improve access to oral health care and promote oral health. The research staff will survey a sample of Chinese American patients (planned n = 90 screened at three outreach centers about their satisfaction with the partnered intervention. Providers (dentists and community health workers, research staff, administrators, site directors, and community advisory board members will

  17. Reduction of Ground Vibration by Means of Barriers or Soil Improvement along a Railway Track

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Lars; Nielsen, Søren R.K.

    2005-01-01

    Trains running in built-up areas are a source to ground-borne noise. A careful design of the track may be one way of minimizing the vibrations in the surroundings. For example, open or infilled trenches may be constructed along the track, or the soil underneath the track may be improved...... the vehicle. The computations are carried out in the frequency domain for various combinations of the vehicle speed and the excitation frequency. The analyses indicate that open trenches are more efficient than infilled trenches or soil stiffening–even at low frequencies. However, the direction of the load...

  18. Participatory Livestock Farmer Training for improvement of animal health in rural and peri-urban smallholder dairy herds in Jinja, Uganda

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vaarst, Mette; Byarugaba, D.K.; Nakavuma, J.

    2007-01-01

    in smallholder dairy farms in the Jinja district of Uganda. Two peri-urban groups and one rural group met for common learning and training two hours per fortnight during a 12-month period, facilitated by two local extension agents together with one or two scientists from Makerere University. Farmers rotated each...... knowledge and experience from training in systematic clinical examination of animals, evaluation of the farm environments, and identification of improvements. Much of the acquired new knowledge was about basic dairy cow management and husbandry practices. In addition, they gave examples of how they were now...... time between farms owned by group participants, which demanded mutual trust, openness and respect. From their own assessment the farmers felt they had improved their milk production and reduced mastitis incidence on their farms. In an evaluation workshop, they articulated how they had built up common...

  19. Participatory evaluation for environmental indicators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Goma, H.C.; Rahim, K.; Nangendo, G.; Riley, J.; Stein, A.

    2001-01-01

    Participatory research has emerged as a powerful tool to identify agro-ecosystem indicators in developing countries. Indigenous knowledge, thus generated complements scientific information to the benefit of all stakeholders. This paper demonstrates the value of participating with farmers and hunters

  20. Critical Viewing and Participatory Democracy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Jodi R.

    1994-01-01

    Illustrates ways that the work of some communication scholars with resistant, oppositional, and critical audiences does not, however, endorse active public life. Attempts to realign the language of critical viewing with the goals of participatory democracy by suggesting qualities of critical viewing that are conducive to achieving and maintaining…

  1. Technology support for participatory budgeting

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rose, Jeremy; Rios, Jesus; Lippa, Barbara

    2010-01-01

    Participatory budgeting is a reasonably well-established governance practice, particularly in South America. It is information and communication rich - making it well suited for modern technology support; in addition, the widespread participation of many citizens is difficult to achieve without...

  2. Participatory Evaluation in Development Cooperation

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Knowledge Shared : Participatory Evaluation in Development Cooperation ... du développement, évaluation, études environnementales, travail social, développement communautaire, développement rural, santé publique internationale, sans oublier les autres disciplines reliées au développement durable et équitable.

  3. Synergistic soil moisture observation - an interdisciplinary multi-sensor approach to yield improved estimates across scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrön, M.; Fersch, B.; Jagdhuber, T.

    2017-12-01

    The representative determination of soil moisture across different spatial ranges and scales is still an important challenge in hydrology. While in situ measurements are trusted methods at the profile- or point-scale, cosmic-ray neutron sensors (CRNS) are renowned for providing volume averages for several hectares and tens of decimeters depth. On the other hand, airborne remote-sensing enables the coverage of regional scales, however limited to the top few centimeters of the soil.Common to all of these methods is a challenging data processing part, often requiring calibration with independent data. We investigated the performance and potential of three complementary observational methods for the determination of soil moisture below grassland in an alpine front-range river catchment (Rott, 55 km2) of southern Germany.We employ the TERENO preAlpine soil moisture monitoring network, along with additional soil samples taken throughout the catchment. Spatial soil moisture products have been generated using surveys of a car-mounted mobile CRNS (rover), and an aerial acquisition of the polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (F-SAR) of DLR.The study assesses (1) the viability of the different methods to estimate soil moisture for their respective scales and extents, and (2) how either method could support an improvement of the others. We found that in situ data can provide valuable information to calibrate the CRNS rover and to train the vegetation removal part of the polarimetric SAR (PolSAR) retrieval algorithm. Vegetation correction is mandatory to obtain the sub-canopy soil moisture patterns. While CRNS rover surveys can be used to evaluate the F-SAR product across scales, vegetation-related PolSAR products in turn can support the spatial correction of CRNS products for biomass water. Despite the different physical principles, the synthesis of the methods can provide reasonable soil moisture information by integrating from the plot to the landscape scale. The

  4. Improved soil particle-size analysis by gamma-ray attenuation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oliveira, J.C.M.; Vaz, C.M.P.; Reichardt, K.; Swartzendruber, D.

    1997-01-01

    The size distribution of particles is useful for physical characterization of soil. This study was conducted to determine whether a new method of soil particle-size analysis by gamma-ray attenuation could be further improved by changing the depth and time of measurement of the suspended particle concentration during sedimentation. In addition to the advantage of nondestructive, undisturbed measurement by gamma-ray attenuation, as compared with conventional pipette or hydrometer methods, the modifications here suggested and employed do substantially decrease the total time for analysis, and will also facilitate total automation and generalize the method for other sedimentation studies. Experimental results are presented for three different Brazilian soil materials, and illustrate the nature of the fine detail provided in the cumulative particle-size distribution as given by measurements obtained during the relatively short time period of 28 min

  5. Improving agricultural drought monitoring in West Africa using root zone soil moisture estimates derived from NDVI

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNally, A.; Funk, C. C.; Yatheendradas, S.; Michaelsen, J.; Cappelarere, B.; Peters-Lidard, C. D.; Verdin, J. P.

    2012-12-01

    The Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) relies heavily on remotely sensed rainfall and vegetation data to monitor agricultural drought in Sub-Saharan Africa and other places around the world. Analysts use satellite rainfall to calculate rainy season statistics and force crop water accounting models that show how the magnitude and timing of rainfall might lead to above or below average harvest. The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) is also an important indicator of growing season progress and is given more weight over regions where, for example, lack of rain gauges increases error in satellite rainfall estimates. Currently, however, near-real time NDVI is not integrated into a modeling framework that informs growing season predictions. To meet this need for our drought monitoring system a land surface model (LSM) is a critical component. We are currently enhancing the FEWS NET monitoring activities by configuring a custom instance of NASA's Land Information System (LIS) called the FEWS NET Land Data Assimilation System. Using the LIS Noah LSM, in-situ measurements, and remotely sensed data, we focus on the following questions: What is the relationship between NDVI and in-situ soil moisture measurements over the West Africa Sahel? How can we use this relationship to improve modeled water and energy fluxes over the West Africa Sahel? We investigate soil moisture and NDVI cross-correlation in the time and frequency domain to develop a transfer function model to predict soil moisture from NDVI. This work compares sites in southwest Niger, Benin, Burkina Faso, and Mali to test the generality of the transfer function. For several sites with fallow and millet vegetation in the Wankama catchment in southwest Niger we developed a non-parametric frequency response model, using NDVI inputs and soil moisture outputs, that accurately estimates root zone soil moisture (40-70cm). We extend this analysis by developing a low order parametric transfer function

  6. Soil Water Improvements with the Long Term Use of a Winter Rye Cover Crop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basche, A.; Kaspar, T.; Archontoulis, S.; Jaynes, D. B.; Sauer, T. J.; Parkin, T.; Miguez, F.

    2015-12-01

    The Midwestern United States, a region that produces one-third of maize and one-quarter of soybeans globally, is projected to experience increasing rainfall variability with future climate change. One approach to mitigate climate impacts is to utilize crop and soil management practices that enhance soil water storage, reducing the risks of flooding and runoff as well as drought-induced crop water stress. While some research indicates that a winter cover crop in a maize-soybean rotation increases soil water, producers continue to be concerned that water use by cover crops will reduce water for a following cash crop. We analyzed continuous in-field soil moisture measurements over from 2008-2014 at a Central Iowa research site that has included a winter rye cover crop in a maize-soybean rotation for thirteen years. This period of study included years in the top third of wettest years on record (2008, 2010, 2014) as well as years in the bottom third of driest years (2012, 2013). We found the cover crop treatment to have significantly higher soil water storage from 2012-2014 when compared to the no cover crop treatment and in most years greater soil water content later in the growing season when a cover crop was present. We further found that the winter rye cover crop significantly increased the field capacity water content and plant available water compared to the no cover crop treatment. Finally, in 2012 and 2013, we measured maize and soybean biomass every 2-3 weeks and did not see treatment differences in crop growth, leaf area or nitrogen uptake. Final crop yields were not statistically different between the cover and no cover crop treatment in any of the years of this analysis. This research indicates that the long-term use of a winter rye cover crop can improve soil water dynamics without sacrificing cash crop growth.

  7. Soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Freudenschuss, A.; Huber, S.; Riss, A.; Schwarz, S.; Tulipan, M.

    2002-01-01

    Environmental soil surveys in each province of Austria have been performed, soils of about 5,000 sites were described and analyzed for nutrients and pollutants, the majority of these data are recorded in the soil information system of Austria (BORIS) soil database, http://www.ubavie.gv.at/umweltsituation/boden/boris), which also contains a soil map of Austria, data from 30 specific investigations mainly in areas with industry and results from the Austria - wide cesium investigation. With respect to the environmental state of soils a short discussion is given, including two geographical charts, one showing which sites have soil data (2001) and the other the cadmium distribution in top soils according land use (forest, grassland, arable land, others). Information related to the soil erosion, Corine land cover (Europe-wide land cover database), evaluation of pollutants in soils (reference values of As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Hg, Mo, Ni, Se, Pb, Tl, Va, Zn, AOX, PAH, PCB, PCDD/pcdf, dioxin), and relevant Austrian and European standards and regulations is provided. Figs. 2, Tables 4. (nevyjel)

  8. Joint Sentinel-1 and SMAP data assimilation to improve soil moisture estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lievens, H.; Reichle, R. H.; Liu, Q.; De Lannoy, G.; Dunbar, R. S.; Kim, S.; Das, N. N.; Cosh, M. H.; Walker, J. P.; Wagner, W.

    2017-12-01

    SMAP (Soil Moisture Active and Passive) radiometer observations at 40 km resolution are routinely assimilated into the NASA Catchment Land Surface Model (CLSM) to generate the SMAP Level 4 Soil Moisture product. The use of C-band radar backscatter observations from Sentinel-1 has the potential to add value to the radiance assimilation by increasing the level of spatial detail. The specifications of Sentinel-1 are appealing, particularly its high spatial resolution (5 by 20 m in interferometric wide swath mode) and frequent revisit time (6 day repeat cycle for the Sentinel-1A and Sentinel-1B constellation). However, the shorter wavelength of Sentinel-1 observations implies less sensitivity to soil moisture. This study investigates the value of Sentinel-1 data for hydrologic simulations by assimilating the radar observations into CLSM, either separately from or simultaneously with SMAP radiometer observations. To facilitate the assimilation of the radar observations, CLSM is coupled to the water cloud model, simulating the radar backscatter as observed by Sentinel-1. The innovations, i.e. differences between observations and simulations, are converted into increments to the model soil moisture state through an Ensemble Kalman Filter. The assimilation impact is assessed by comparing 3-hourly, 9 km surface and root-zone soil moisture simulations with in situ measurements from 9 km SMAP core validation sites and sparse networks, from May 2015 to 2017. The Sentinel-1 assimilation consistently improves surface soil moisture, whereas root-zone impacts are mostly neutral. Relatively larger improvements are obtained from SMAP assimilation. The joint assimilation of SMAP and Sentinel-1 observations performs best, demonstrating the complementary value of radar and radiometer observations.

  9. Improving phosphorus availability in an acid soil using organic amendments produced from agroindustrial wastes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ch'ng, Huck Ywih; Ahmed, Osumanu Haruna; Majid, Nik Muhamad Ab

    2014-01-01

    In acid soils, soluble inorganic phosphorus is fixed by aluminium and iron. To overcome this problem, acid soils are limed to fix aluminium and iron but this practice is not economical. The practice is also not environmentally friendly. This study was conducted to improve phosphorus availability using organic amendments (biochar and compost produced from chicken litter and pineapple leaves, resp.) to fix aluminium and iron instead of phosphorus. Amending soil with biochar or compost or a mixture of biochar and compost increased total phosphorus, available phosphorus, inorganic phosphorus fractions (soluble inorganic phosphorus, aluminium bound inorganic phosphorus, iron bound inorganic phosphorus, redundant soluble inorganic phosphorus, and calcium bound phosphorus), and organic phosphorus. This was possible because the organic amendments increased soil pH and reduced exchangeable acidity, exchangeable aluminium, and exchangeable iron. The findings suggest that the organic amendments altered soil chemical properties in a way that enhanced the availability of phosphorus in this study. The amendments effectively fixed aluminium and iron instead of phosphorus, thus rendering phosphorus available by keeping the inorganic phosphorus in a bioavailable labile phosphorus pool for a longer period compared with application of Triple Superphosphate without organic amendments.

  10. Improving Phosphorus Availability in an Acid Soil Using Organic Amendments Produced from Agroindustrial Wastes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huck Ywih Ch’ng

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In acid soils, soluble inorganic phosphorus is fixed by aluminium and iron. To overcome this problem, acid soils are limed to fix aluminium and iron but this practice is not economical. The practice is also not environmentally friendly. This study was conducted to improve phosphorus availability using organic amendments (biochar and compost produced from chicken litter and pineapple leaves, resp. to fix aluminium and iron instead of phosphorus. Amending soil with biochar or compost or a mixture of biochar and compost increased total phosphorus, available phosphorus, inorganic phosphorus fractions (soluble inorganic phosphorus, aluminium bound inorganic phosphorus, iron bound inorganic phosphorus, redundant soluble inorganic phosphorus, and calcium bound phosphorus, and organic phosphorus. This was possible because the organic amendments increased soil pH and reduced exchangeable acidity, exchangeable aluminium, and exchangeable iron. The findings suggest that the organic amendments altered soil chemical properties in a way that enhanced the availability of phosphorus in this study. The amendments effectively fixed aluminium and iron instead of phosphorus, thus rendering phosphorus available by keeping the inorganic phosphorus in a bioavailable labile phosphorus pool for a longer period compared with application of Triple Superphosphate without organic amendments.

  11. Use of flyash and biogas slurry for improving wheat yield and physical properties of soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garg, R N; Pathak, H; Das, D K; Tomar, R K

    2005-08-01

    This study explores the potential use of by-products of energy production, i.e., (i) flyash from coal-powered electricity generation and (ii) biogas slurry from agricultural waste treatment, as nutrient sources in agriculture. These residues are available in large amounts and their disposal is a major concern for the environment. As both residues contain considerable amounts of plant nutrients, their use as soil amendment may offer a promising win-win opportunity to improve crop production and, at the same time, preventing adverse environmental impacts of waste disposal. Effect of flyash and biogas slurry on soil physical properties and growth and yield of wheat (Triticum aestivum) was studied in a field experiment. Leaf area index, root length density and grain yield of wheat were higher in plots amended with flyash or biogas slurry compared to unamended plots. Both types of amendments reduced bulk density, and increased saturated hydraulic conductivity and moisture retention capacity of soil. The study showed that flyash and biogas slurry should be used as soil amendments for obtaining short-term and long-term benefits in terms of production increments and soil amelioration.

  12. Beyond clay: Towards an improved set of variables for predicting soil organic matter content

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasmussen, Craig; Heckman, Katherine; Wieder, William R.; Keiluweit, Marco; Lawrence, Corey R.; Berhe, Asmeret Asefaw; Blankinship, Joseph C.; Crow, Susan E.; Druhan, Jennifer; Hicks Pries, Caitlin E.; Marin-Spiotta, Erika; Plante, Alain F.; Schadel, Christina; Schmiel, Joshua P.; Sierra, Carlos A.; Thompson, Aaron; Wagai, Rota

    2018-01-01

    Improved quantification of the factors controlling soil organic matter (SOM) stabilization at continental to global scales is needed to inform projections of the largest actively cycling terrestrial carbon pool on Earth, and its response to environmental change. Biogeochemical models rely almost exclusively on clay content to modify rates of SOM turnover and fluxes of climate-active CO2 to the atmosphere. Emerging conceptual understanding, however, suggests other soil physicochemical properties may predict SOM stabilization better than clay content. We addressed this discrepancy by synthesizing data from over 5,500 soil profiles spanning continental scale environmental gradients. Here, we demonstrate that other physicochemical parameters are much stronger predictors of SOM content, with clay content having relatively little explanatory power. We show that exchangeable calcium strongly predicted SOM content in water-limited, alkaline soils, whereas with increasing moisture availability and acidity, iron- and aluminum-oxyhydroxides emerged as better predictors, demonstrating that the relative importance of SOM stabilization mechanisms scales with climate and acidity. These results highlight the urgent need to modify biogeochemical models to better reflect the role of soil physicochemical properties in SOM cycling.

  13. Soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Freudenschuss, A.; Huber, S.; Riss, A.; Schwarz, S.; Tulipan, M.

    2001-01-01

    For Austria there exists a comprehensive soil data collection, integrated in a GIS (geographical information system). The content values of pollutants (cadmium, mercury, lead, copper, mercury, radio-cesium) are given in geographical charts and in tables by regions and by type of soil (forests, agriculture, greenland, others) for the whole area of Austria. Erosion effects are studied for the Austrian region. Legal regulations and measures for an effective soil protection, reduction of soil degradation and sustainable development in Austria and the European Union are discussed. (a.n.)

  14. [Application of participatory teaching mode in oral health education].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ci, Xiang-ke; Zhao, Yu-hong; Wan, Li; Xiong, Wei; Wang, Yu-jiang; Ou, Xiao-yan

    2013-06-01

    To apply participatory teaching mode in oral health education, and to assess its role in cultivating comprehensive stomatological professionals suitable for the development of modern medicine. Sixty undergraduate students from grade 2005 in Stomatological College of Nanchang University were selected. Among those students, oral health education course was carried out by traditional teaching mode, while 120 undergraduate students from grades 2006 to 2007 received participatory teaching approach, which paid attention to practice in oral health education practice course. After the course, a survey and evaluation of teaching effectiveness was conducted. Questionnaire survey showed that participatory teaching mode could significantly improve the students' capabilities and provide much more help to their study. Application of participatory teaching mode in oral health education course for undergraduates is feasible. It can improve students' comprehensive ability and cultivate their cultural literacy and scientific literacy. It also meets the training goal of stomatological professionals and the development trend of education reform. Supported by Higher School Teaching Reform Research Subject of Jiangxi Province(JXJG-10-1-42).

  15. Breaking continuous potato cropping with legumes improves soil microbial communities, enzyme activities and tuber yield

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Shuhao; Yeboah, Stephen; Cao, Li; Zhang, Junlian; Shi, Shangli; Liu, Yuhui

    2017-01-01

    This study was conducted to explore the changes in soil microbial populations, enzyme activity, and tuber yield under the rotation sequences of Potato–Common vetch (P–C), Potato–Black medic (P–B) and Potato–Longdong alfalfa (P–L) in a semi–arid area of China. The study also determined the effects of continuous potato cropping (without legumes) on the above mentioned soil properties and yield. The number of bacteria increased significantly (p continuous cropping soils, respectively compared to P–C rotation. The highest fungi/bacteria ratio was found in P–C (0.218), followed by P–L (0.184) and then P–B (0.137) rotation over the different cropping years. In the continuous potato cropping soils, the greatest fungi/bacteria ratio was recorded in the 4–year (0.4067) and 7–year (0.4238) cropping soils and these were significantly higher than 1–year (0.3041), 2–year (0.2545) and 3–year (0.3030) cropping soils. Generally, actinomycetes numbers followed the trend P–L>P–C>P–B. The P–L rotation increased aerobic azotobacters in 2–year (by 26% and 18%) and 4–year (40% and 21%) continuous cropping soils compared to P–C and P–B rotation, respectively. Generally, the highest urease and alkaline phosphate activity, respectively, were observed in P–C (55.77 mg g–1) and (27.71 mg g–1), followed by P–B (50.72 mg mg–1) and (25.64 mg g–1) and then P–L (41.61 mg g–1) and (23.26 mg g–1) rotation. Soil urease, alkaline phosphatase and hydrogen peroxidase activities decreased with increasing years of continuous potato cropping. On average, the P–B rotation significantly increased (p improve soil biology environment, alleviate continuous cropping obstacle and increase potato tuber yield in semi–arid region. PMID:28463981

  16. Understanding the mechanisms through which women's group community participatory intervention improved maternal health outcomes in rural Malawi: was the use of contraceptives the pathway?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Collins O. F. Zamawe

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: Women's group intervention is a community based initiative through which rural women form groups, meet regularly to discuss maternal health issues affecting them, and come up with locally available solutions. This intervention has been associated with reduced maternal and neonatal mortality in limited resource settings. Nevertheless, the mechanisms through which women's groups influence maternal health outcomes are uncertain. Because contraception reduces the risk of maternal mortality and women's groups also tackled this issue, we speculated that contraceptive use might be the pathway. Consequently, this study investigated whether participation in women's groups was associated with contraceptive use in Malawi. Design: We examined the use of contraceptives between women who participated in women's groups and those who did not through a community-based cross-sectional study in Mchinji, Malawi. The study involved 3,435 women of reproductive age (15–49 years who were recruited using a multistage sampling approach. Members (treated and non-members (control of women's groups were matched on observed covariates using propensity scores and the counterfactual for the treated individuals was estimated. Results: Crude analysis revealed that women's groups improved uptake of contraceptives by 26% (odds ratio (OR=1.26; 95% confidence interval (CI=1.03–1.56; p=0.024. However, using the matched data, uptake of contraceptives was almost the same among members and non-members of women's groups. More precisely, the likelihood of using contraceptives was not significantly different between the members and non-members of women's groups (OR=1.00; 95% CI=0.81–1.24; p=0.991. Conclusions: There is insufficient evidence of an association between participation in women's groups and contraceptive use among rural Malawian women. The implication is that contraception was not the mechanism through which women's groups contributed to reduced maternal

  17. Soil-plant transfer models for metals to improve soil screening value guidelines valid for São Paulo, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dos Santos-Araujo, Sabrina N; Swartjes, Frank A; Versluijs, Kees W; Moreno, Fabio Netto; Alleoni, Luís R F

    2017-11-07

    In Brazil, there is a lack of combined soil-plant data attempting to explain the influence of specific climate, soil conditions, and crop management on heavy metal uptake and accumulation by plants. As a consequence, soil-plant relationships to be used in risk assessments or for derivation of soil screening values are not available. Our objective in this study was to develop empirical soil-plant models for Cd, Cu, Pb, Ni, and Zn, in order to derive appropriate soil screening values representative of humid tropical regions such as the state of São Paulo (SP), Brazil. Soil and plant samples from 25 vegetable species in the production areas of SP were collected. The concentrations of metals found in these soil samples were relatively low. Therefore, data from temperate regions were included in our study. The soil-plant relations derived had a good performance for SP conditions for 8 out of 10 combinations of metal and vegetable species. The bioconcentration factor (BCF) values for Cd, Cu, Ni, Pb, and Zn in lettuce and for Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn in carrot were determined under three exposure scenarios at pH 5 and 6. The application of soil-plant models and the BCFs proposed in this study can be an important tool to derive national soil quality criteria. However, this methodological approach includes data assessed under different climatic conditions and soil types and need to be carefully considered.

  18. Mulching as a strategy to improve soil properties and reduce soil erodibility in coffee farming systems of Rwanda

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nzeyimana, I.; Hartemink, A.E.; Ritsema, C.J.; Stroosnijder, L.; Huerta Lwanga, Esperanza; Geissen, V.

    2017-01-01

    In Rwanda, mulch is applied in coffee fields to control soil erosion. The objective of this paper is to quantify the effects of different types of mulch on soil properties and soil erodibility in coffee farming systems in three different agro-ecological zones of the highlands of Rwanda. The

  19. Medicine Goes Female: Protocol for Improving Career Options of Females and Working Conditions for Researching Physicians in Clinical Medical Research by Organizational Transformation and Participatory Design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasebrook, Joachim; Hahnenkamp, Klaus; Buhre, Wolfgang F F A; de Korte-de Boer, Dianne; Hamaekers, Ankie E W; Metelmann, Bibiana; Metelmann, Camila; Bortul, Marina; Palmisano, Silvia; Mellin-Olsen, Jannicke; Macas, Andrius; Andres, Janusz; Prokop-Dorner, Anna; Vymazal, Tomáš; Hinkelmann, Juergen; Rodde, Sibyll; Pfleiderer, Bettina

    2017-08-02

    -research platform. Project results will be published in peer-reviewed journals with high-impact factors. In addition, workshops on gender dimension in research using the principles of Gendered Innovation will be held. Support and consulting services for hospitals will be introduced in order to develop a European consulting service. The main impact of the project will be the implementation of innovative GEP tailored to the needs of university hospitals, which will lead to measurable institutional change in gender equality. This will impact the research at university hospitals in general, and will improve career prospects of female researchers in particular. Simultaneously, the gender dimension in medical research as an innovation factor and mandatory topic will be strengthened and integrated in each individual university hospital research activity. Research funding organizations can use the built knowledge to include mandatory topics for funding applications to enforce the use and implementation of GEP in university hospitals. ©Joachim Hasebrook, Klaus Hahnenkamp, Wolfgang F.F.A. Buhre, Dianne de Korte-de Boer, Ankie E.W. Hamaekers, Bibiana Metelmann, Camila Metelmann, Marina Bortul, Silvia Palmisano, Jannicke Mellin-Olsen, Andrius Macas, Janusz Andres, Anna Prokop-Dorner, Tomáš Vymazal, Juergen Hinkelmann, Sibyll Rodde, Bettina Pfleiderer. Originally published in JMIR Research Protocols (http://www.researchprotocols.org), 02.08.2017.

  20. Management of Lignite Fly Ash for Improving Soil Fertility and Crop Productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ram, Lal C.; Srivastava, Nishant K.; Jha, Sangeet K.; Sinha, Awadhesh K.; Masto, Reginald E.; Selvi, Vetrivel A.

    2007-09-01

    Lignite fly ash (LFA), being alkaline and endowed with excellent pozzolanic properties, a silt loam texture, and plant nutrients, has the potential to improve soil quality and productivity. Long-term field trials with groundnut, maize, and sun hemp were carried out to study the effect of LFA on growth and yield. Before crop I was sown, LFA was applied at various doses with and without press mud (an organic waste from the sugar industry, used as an amendment and source of nutrients). LFA with and without press mud was also applied before crops III and V were cultivated. Chemical fertilizer, along with gypsum, humic acid, and biofertilizer, was applied in all treatments, including the control. With one-time and repeat applications of LFA (with and without press mud), yield increased significantly (7.0-89.0%) in relation to the control crop. The press mud enhanced the yield (3.0-15.0%) with different LFA applications. The highest yield LFA dose was 200 t/ha for one-time and repeat applications, the maximum yield being with crop III (combination treatment). One-time and repeat application of LFA (alone and in combination with press mud) improved soil quality and the nutrient content of the produce. The highest dose of LFA (200 t/ha) with and without press mud showed the best residual effects (eco-friendly increases in the yield of succeeding crops). Some increase in trace- and heavy-metal contents and in the level of γ-emitters in soil and crop produce, but well within permissible limits, was observed. Thus, LFA can be used on a large scale to boost soil fertility and productivity with no adverse effects on the soil or crops, which may solve the problem of bulk disposal of fly ash in an eco-friendly manner.

  1. Participatory Design & Health Information Technology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Health Information Technology (HIT) continues to increase in importance as a component of healthcare provision, but designing HIT is complex. The creation of cooperative learning processes for future HIT users is not a simple task. The importance of engaging end users such as health professionals......, in collaboration with a wide range of people, a broad repertoire of methods and techniques to apply PD within multiple domains has been established. This book, Participatory Design & Health Information Technology, presents the contributions of researchers from 5 countries, who share their experience and insights......, patients and relatives in the design process is widely acknowledged, and Participatory Design (PD) is the primary discipline for directly involving people in the technological design process. Exploring the application of PD in HIT is crucial to all those involved in engaging end users in HIT design and...

  2. Social Dynamics of Participatory Innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sproedt, Henrik

    2011-01-01

    perspective on innovation. Then, a similar development in the field of knowledge and knowing is presented, where the perspective changes from a divisional systemthinking towards a more relational view of complementing combinations of knowledge and knowing, recognizing the challenge of boundaries. Further......A conceptual framework for a coherent understanding of knowledge as a socially constructed resource in flux over boundaries when innovating with others is constructed. Starting with an overview of different perspectives on innovation, showing a development towards a more iterative social process......, relating, cognitive social capital and the justification of knowledge are described as different but interdependent dimensions of transforming knowledge across boundaries in participatory innovation. A multi-level concept of social dynamics of participatory innovation is proposed, and a model...

  3. Design Anthropology in Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Smith, Rachel Charlotte; Gislev Kjærsgaard, Mette

    2014-01-01

    In this workshop we explore the opportunities of ethnography and design anthropology in Participatory Design (PD) as an approach to design in an increasingly global and digital world. Traditionally, ethnography has been used in PD to research real-life contexts and challenges, and as ways...... opportunities of using design anthropology as a holistic and critical approach to societal challenges, and a way for anthropologists and designers to engage in design that extends beyond the empirical....

  4. Incentive Schemes for Participatory Sensing

    OpenAIRE

    Radanovic, Goran; Faltings, Boi

    2015-01-01

    We consider a participatory sensing scenario where a group of private sensors observes the same phenomenon, such as air pollution. Since sensors need to be installed and maintained, owners of sensors are inclined to provide inaccurate or random data. We design a novel payment mechanism that incentivizes honest behavior by scoring sensors based on the quality of their reports. The basic principle follows the standard Bayesian Truth Serum (BTS) paradigm, where highest rewards are obtained for r...

  5. Introduction to (participatory) design games

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brandt, Eva

    2014-01-01

    This article gives an introduction to (participatory) design games in three rounds. Firstly it argues that designing design games is a particular and very productive genre for formatting participation and design dialogues during ongoing design projects. Secondly it presents some of the main contr...... contributions to the development of design games in a historical perspective, and thirdly it introduces three recent PhD dissertations that all but in very different ways have investigated design games in more detail....

  6. Study protocol of EMPOWER participatory action research (EMPOWER-PAR): a pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial of multifaceted chronic disease management strategies to improve diabetes and hypertension outcomes in primary care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramli, Anis S; Lakshmanan, Sharmila; Haniff, Jamaiyah; Selvarajah, Sharmini; Tong, Seng F; Bujang, Mohamad-Adam; Abdul-Razak, Suraya; Shafie, Asrul A; Lee, Verna K M; Abdul-Rahman, Thuhairah H; Daud, Maryam H; Ng, Kien K; Ariffin, Farnaza; Abdul-Hamid, Hasidah; Mazapuspavina, Md-Yasin; Mat-Nasir, Nafiza; Miskan, Maizatullifah; Stanley-Ponniah, Jaya P; Ismail, Mastura; Chan, Chun W; Abdul-Rahman, Yong R; Chew, Boon-How; Low, Wilson H H

    2014-09-13

    Chronic disease management presents enormous challenges to the primary care workforce because of the rising epidemic of cardiovascular risk factors. The chronic care model was proven effective in improving chronic disease outcomes in developed countries, but there is little evidence of its effectiveness in developing countries. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the EMPOWER-PAR intervention (multifaceted chronic disease management strategies based on the chronic care model) in improving outcomes for type 2 diabetes mellitus and hypertension using readily available resources in the Malaysian public primary care setting. This paper presents the study protocol. A pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial using participatory action research is underway in 10 public primary care clinics in Selangor and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Five clinics were randomly selected to provide the EMPOWER-PAR intervention for 1 year and another five clinics continued with usual care. Each clinic consecutively recruits type 2 diabetes mellitus and hypertension patients fulfilling the inclusion and exclusion criteria over a 2-week period. The EMPOWER-PAR intervention consists of creating/strengthening a multidisciplinary chronic disease management team, training the team to use the Global Cardiovascular Risks Self-Management Booklet to support patient care and reinforcing the use of relevant clinical practice guidelines for management and prescribing. For type 2 diabetes mellitus, the primary outcome is the change in the proportion of patients achieving HbA1c diabetes mellitus, the primary outcome is the change in the proportion of patients achieving blood pressure care and prescribing patterns. Patients' assessment of their chronic disease care and providers' perceptions, attitudes and perceived barriers in care delivery and cost-effectiveness of the intervention are also evaluated. Results from this study will provide objective evidence of the effectiveness and

  7. Improving Simulated Soil Moisture Fields Through Assimilation of AMSR-E Soil Moisture Retrievals with an Ensemble Kalman Filter and a Mass Conservation Constraint

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Bailing; Toll, David; Zhan, Xiwu; Cosgrove, Brian

    2011-01-01

    Model simulated soil moisture fields are often biased due to errors in input parameters and deficiencies in model physics. Satellite derived soil moisture estimates, if retrieved appropriately, represent the spatial mean of soil moisture in a footprint area, and can be used to reduce model bias (at locations near the surface) through data assimilation techniques. While assimilating the retrievals can reduce model bias, it can also destroy the mass balance enforced by the model governing equation because water is removed from or added to the soil by the assimilation algorithm. In addition, studies have shown that assimilation of surface observations can adversely impact soil moisture estimates in the lower soil layers due to imperfect model physics, even though the bias near the surface is decreased. In this study, an ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) with a mass conservation updating scheme was developed to assimilate the actual value of Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) soil moisture retrievals to improve the mean of simulated soil moisture fields by the Noah land surface model. Assimilation results using the conventional and the mass conservation updating scheme in the Little Washita watershed of Oklahoma showed that, while both updating schemes reduced the bias in the shallow root zone, the mass conservation scheme provided better estimates in the deeper profile. The mass conservation scheme also yielded physically consistent estimates of fluxes and maintained the water budget. Impacts of model physics on the assimilation results are discussed.

  8. Microbialproperty improvement of saline-alkali soil for vegetable cultivation in Shanghai coastal area and its evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    KOU Yiming

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available In order to improve the fertility of saline-alkali soil in Shanghai coastal area,and make it suitable for vegetable cultiration,in the study,the saline-alkali soil was mixed with organic fertilizer,and then sprayed with composite microbes,which have the ability of the synergistically degrading organic substrate.The results showed that the saline-alkali soil added with 5∶1 organic fertilizer can rapidly increase the utilization ability soil organic matter.The soil microbial populations and microbial diversity index were significantly improved when applied with the 0.5% composite microbial liquid which containeds 1∶3∶3∶1 of Bacillus licheniformis,Pseudomonas sp., Flavobacterium sp.and Sphingomonas sp..At the same time,the enzymology indicators of soil urease,phosphatase,cellulase and catalase increased significantly.The vegetable cultivation experiments showed that:the biomass of Brassica chinensis nearly doubled in the original saline-alkali soil,while the yield of organic fertilizer increased 30.2% after 50 days.The research result on of the biological improvement for saline-alkali soil will have good application value in vegetable planting in coastal saline-alkali soil.

  9. Data Assimilation using observed streamflow and remotely-sensed soil moisture for improving sub-seasonal-to-seasonal forecasting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arumugam, S.; Mazrooei, A.; Lakshmi, V.; Wood, A.

    2017-12-01

    Subseasonal-to-seasonal (S2S) forecasts of soil moisture and streamflow provides critical information for water and agricultural systems to support short-term planning and mangement. This study evaluates the role of observed streamflow and remotely-sensed soil moisture from SMAP (Soil Moisture Active Passive) mission in improving S2S streamflow and soil moisture forecasting using data assimilation (DA). We first show the ability to forecast soil moisture at monthly-to-seaasonal time scale by forcing climate forecasts with NASA's Land Information System and then compares the developed soil moisture forecast with the SMAP data over the Southeast US. Our analyses show significant skill in forecasting real-time soil moisture over 1-3 months using climate information. We also show that the developed soil moisture forecasts capture the observed severe drought conditions (2007-2008) over the Southeast US. Following that, we consider both SMAP data and observed streamflow for improving S2S streamflow and soil moisture forecasts for a pilot study area, Tar River basin, in NC. Towards this, we consider variational assimilation (VAR) of gauge-measured daily streamflow data in improving initial hydrologic conditions of Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model. The utility of data assimilation is then assessed in improving S2S forecasts of streamflow and soil moisture through a retrospective analyses. Furthermore, the optimal frequency of data assimilation and optimal analysis window (number of past observations to use) are also assessed in order to achieve the maximum improvement in S2S forecasts of streamflow and soil moisture. Potential utility of updating initial conditions using DA and providing skillful forcings are also discussed.

  10. Improving Soil Moisture Estimation through the Joint Assimilation of SMOS and GRACE Satellite Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girotto, Manuela

    2018-01-01

    Observations from recent soil moisture dedicated missions (e.g. SMOS or SMAP) have been used in innovative data assimilation studies to provide global high spatial (i.e., approximately10-40 km) and temporal resolution (i.e., daily) soil moisture profile estimates from microwave brightness temperature observations. These missions are only sensitive to near-surface soil moisture 0-5 cm). In contrast, the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) mission provides accurate measurements of the entire vertically integrated terrestrial water storage (TWS) column but, it is characterized by low spatial (i.e., 150,000 km2) and temporal (i.e., monthly) resolutions. Data assimilation studies have shown that GRACE-TWS primarily affects (in absolute terms) deeper moisture storages (i.e., groundwater). In this presentation I will review benefits and drawbacks associated to the assimilation of both types of observations. In particular, I will illustrate the benefits and drawbacks of their joint assimilation for the purpose of improving the entire profile of soil moisture (i.e., surface and deeper water storages).

  11. The potential of Arachis pintoi biomass to improve quality of soil continuously used for cassava cropping

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Muddarisna

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A field experiment that was aimed to elucidate the effects of application of Arachis pintoi biomass and animal dung on quality of soil continuously used for cassava cropping was conducted at Jatikerto Village, Kromengan District of Malang Regency. Eight treatments tested were 100% NPK inorganic fertilizer, 100 kg N Arachis pintoi/ha, (3 100 kg N chicken dung/ ha, 100 kg N cow dung /ha, 100 kg N goat dung /ha, 100 kg N Arachis pintoi + chicken dung /ha, 100 kg N Arachis pintoi + cow dung /ha, and 100 kg N Arachis pintoi + goat dung /ha. Monitoring quality of top soil (0-20 cm was carried out at planting time and 3 months after planting. Soil samples were collected and analyzed for chemical and physical properties. Yield of cassava was measured at 6 months after planting. Results of this study showed that application of organic fertilizer in forms of green manure (Arachis pintoi biomass, and animal dung significantly improved physical and chemical properties of soil. Application of 50% NPK combined with organic manures did not significantly gave different tuber yield with that of 100% NPK.

  12. Practice of Participatory Governance in Public Policy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Алена Сергеевна Перезолова

    2018-12-01

    Full Text Available This article examines the idea of participatory democracy. The article provides case study of pilot projects aimed to engage citizens for public participation in different forms, such as: participatory budgeting, participatory modeling, public consultations and other participatory practices. The concept of public participation implied in most common methods of consultation as local meetings, public hearings, creation of working groups, public dialogue commissions, workshops, discussion forums on Web sites, contests of ideas and projects, crowdfunding projects, cooperation citizens initiatives and more consumerist type as polls and focus groups. The ability to work together becomes a resource for growth of civic consciousness, where citizens become active actors, who able to participate in public policy, resource mobilization, independent projects for realization and formation of social capital. The challenge for participatory democracy is maturity degree of civil society and examined examples of participatory practices are pilot projects that aimed formation of civic consciousness.

  13. Participatory integrated watershed management in the north-western highlands of Rwanda

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kagabo, M.D.

    2013-01-01

    This thesis is the result of assessments on the extent of existing resource use and management practices using a Participatory Integrated Watershed Management (PIWM) as a viable approach to promote best soil water conservation (SWC) measures towards more sustainable land use. The study was

  14. African Primary Care Research: Participatory action research

    OpenAIRE

    Mash, Bob

    2014-01-01

    This article is part of the series on African primary care research and focuses on participatory action research. The article gives an overview of the emancipatory-critical research paradigm, the key characteristics and different types of participatory action research. Following this it describes in detail the methodological issues involved in professional participatory action research and running a cooperative inquiry group. The article is intended to help students with writing their researc...

  15. Composting of biochars improves their sorption properties, retains nutrients during composting and affects greenhouse gas emissions after soil application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar application to soils has been suggested to elevate nutrient sorption, improve soil fertility and reduce net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. We examined the impact of composting biochar together with a biologically active substrate (i.e., livestock manure-straw mixture). We hypothesized that ...

  16. Participatory Technology and Constraints Assessment to Improve ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Beekeeping is a long-standing practice in the rural communities of Ethiopia and appears as ancient history of the country. A three–part assessment and diagnostic study (Livelihood systems assessment, integrated honeybee management needs assessment and diagnostic survey) was undertaken from 2006-2008 in Tigray, ...

  17. participatory identification of farmer acceptable improved rice ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Prof. Adipala Ekwamu

    Small panicle size which appear light. Low yielding. IR 64. It is a short variety and therefore easily submerged in case of flooding. Because it is short, the variety is difficult to harvest, because one needs to bend while harvesting which is very tiresome. Short in height thus easily overwhelmed by weeds. Supa. Late maturing.

  18. Participatory Technology and Constraints Assessment to Improve ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    knowledge and appreciation of these endowments (Girma, 1998). ... as an important ingredient for processing honey wine locally called Tej .... This phase combined a macro-level analysis for understanding the dynamics of the overall.

  19. Participatory testing and reporting in an environmental-justice community of Worcester, Massachusetts: a pilot project

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Calvache Maria-Camila

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite indoor home environments being where people spend most time, involving residents in testing those environments has been very limited, especially in marginalized communities. We piloted participatory testing and reporting that combined relatively simple tests with actionable reporting to empower residents in Main South/Piedmont neighborhoods of Worcester, Massachusetts. We answered: 1 How do we design and implement the approach for neighborhood and household environments using participatory methods? 2 What do pilot tests reveal? 3 How does our experience inform testing practice? Methods The approach was designed and implemented with community partners using community-based participatory research. Residents and researchers tested fourteen homes for: lead in dust indoors, soil outdoors, paint indoors and drinking water; radon in basement air; PM2.5 in indoor air; mold spores in indoor/outdoor air; and drinking water quality. Monitoring of neighborhood particulates by residents and researchers used real-time data to stimulate dialogue. Results Given the newness of our partnership and unforeseen conflicts, we achieved moderate-high success overall based on process and outcome criteria: methods, test results, reporting, lessons learned. The conflict burden we experienced may be attributable less to generic university-community differences in interests/culture, and more to territoriality and interpersonal issues. Lead-in-paint touch-swab results were poor proxies for lead-in-dust. Of eight units tested in summer, three had very high lead-in-dust (>1000 μg/ft2, six exceeded at least one USEPA standard for lead-in-dust and/or soil. Tap water tests showed no significant exposures. Monitoring of neighborhood particulates raised awareness of environmental health risks, especially asthma. Conclusions Timely reporting back home-toxics' results to residents is ethical but it must be empowering. Future work should fund the active

  20. Biochar can be used to recapture essential nutrients from dairy wastewater and improve soil quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghezzehei, T. A.; Sarkhot, D. V.; Berhe, A. A.

    2014-04-01

    Recently, the potential for biochar use to recapture excess nutrients from dairy wastewater has been a focus of a growing number of studies. It is suggested that biochar produced from locally available waste biomass can be important in reducing release of excess nutrient elements from agricultural runoff, improving soil productivity, and long-term carbon (C) sequestration. Here we present a review of a new approach that is showing promise for the use of biochar for nutrient capture. Using batch sorption experiments, it has been shown that biochar can adsorb up to 20 to 43% of ammonium and 19-65% of the phosphate in flushed dairy manure in 24 h. These results suggest a potential of biochar for recovering essential nutrients from dairy wastewater and improving soil fertility if the enriched biochar is returned to soil. Based on the sorption capacity of 2.86 and 0.23 mg ammonium and phosphate, respectively, per gram of biochar and 10-50% utilization of available excess biomass, in the state of California (US) alone, 11 440 to 57 200 t of ammonium-N and 920-4600 t of phosphate can be captured from dairy waste each year while at the same time disposing up to 8-40 million tons of waste biomass.

  1. Improved Ground Hydrology Calculations for Global Climate Models (GCMs): Soil Water Movement and Evapotranspiration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abramopoulos, F.; Rosenzweig, C.; Choudhury, B.

    1988-09-01

    A physically based ground hydrology model is developed to improve the land-surface sensible and latent heat calculations in global climate models (GCMs). The processes of transpiration, evaporation from intercepted precipitation and dew, evaporation from bare soil, infiltration, soil water flow, and runoff are explicitly included in the model. The amount of detail in the hydrologic calculations is restricted to a level appropriate for use in a GCM, but each of the aforementioned processes is modeled on the basis of the underlying physical principles. Data from the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) GCM are used as inputs for off-line tests of the ground hydrology model in four 8° × 10° regions (Brazil, Sahel, Sahara, and India). Soil and vegetation input parameters are calculated as area-weighted means over the 8° × 10° gridhox. This compositing procedure is tested by comparing resulting hydrological quantities to ground hydrology model calculations performed on the 1° × 1° cells which comprise the 8° × 10° gridbox. Results show that the compositing procedure works well except in the Sahel where lower soil water levels and a heterogeneous land surface produce more variability in hydrological quantities, indicating that a resolution better than 8° × 10° is needed for that region. Modeled annual and diurnal hydrological cycles compare well with observations for Brazil, where real world data are available. The sensitivity of the ground hydrology model to several of its input parameters was tested; it was found to be most sensitive to the fraction of land covered by vegetation and least sensitive to the soil hydraulic conductivity and matric potential.

  2. Participatory simulation in hospital work system design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Simone Nyholm

    When ergonomic considerations are integrated into the design of work systems, both overall system performance and employee well-being improve. A central part of integrating ergonomics in work system design is to benefit from emplo y-ees’ knowledge of existing work systems. Participatory simulation...... (PS) is a method to access employee knowledge; namely employees are involved in the simulation and design of their own future work systems through the exploration of models representing work system designs. However, only a few studies have investigated PS and the elements of the method. Yet...... understanding the elements is essential when analyzing and planning PS in research and practice. This PhD study investigates PS and the method elements in the context of the Danish hospital sector, where PS is applied in the renewal and design of public hospitals and the work systems within the hospitals...

  3. Teaching Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kensing, Finn; Bødker, Keld; Simonsen, Jesper

    2004-01-01

    This full-day invitational pre-conference workshop is devoted to sharing experiences from teaching PD methods, approaches, issues and concerns to students and practitioners. Our experiences stem from teaching and coaching IT practitioners as well as students studying computer science or IT. However......, people with experiences gained from working with other professions are also welcome. Short presentations from each of the participants form the starting point of the discussion to which most of the time will be devoted. The intend is not to suggest the way of teaching PD, rather we hope that each...... participant will receive valuable inspiration to help improve his or her own teaching....

  4. GIS as a tool in participatory natural resource management: Examples from the Peruvian Andes

    OpenAIRE

    Bussink, C.

    2003-01-01

    Metadata only record Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are often seen as incompatible with participatory processes. However, since the late 1990s, attempts have been made in numerous projects around the world to define 'best practices' for improved natural resource management projects that integrate participation and accurate spatial information, using GIS (for example, see www.iapad.org/participatory_gis.htm). This article describes a project in the Peruvian Andes where spatial informa...

  5. Observation and Modelling of Soil Water Content Towards Improved Performance Indicators of Large Irrigation Schemes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Labbassi, Kamal; Akdim, Nadia; Alfieri, Silvia Maria; Menenti, Massimo

    2014-05-01

    -Monteith equation with reflectance-based estimates of canopy biophysical variables, such as surface albedo (r), leaf area index (LAI) and crop height (hc). The validation of spatial results using the dual crop coefficient approach (kcb) showed that the satellite-based estimates of ETc corresponded well with ground-based ETc i.e, R²=0.75 and RMSE=0.79 versus R²=0.73 and RMSE=0.89 for respectively kc-NDVI and analytical approach. To monitor IP3 (x, y, t) with the SWAP model we mapped soil hydrological properties combining soil maps with grain size analysis of a number of samples, and agricultural crops using multi-temporal classification of NDVI time series. The assessment of irrigation performance in term of adequacy between requirement and allocation showed that CWR are much larger than water supply for entire area, this mismatch is improved in the beginning of the growing season by means of Irrigation water requirement (IWR) and even more using the net irrigation water requirement (NIWR) estimated using SWAP model. We expect that the availability of SMAP data products will significantly improve the reliability and temporal sampling of our indicators.

  6. An improved SOIL*EX trademark process for the removal of hazardous and radioactive contaminants from soils, sludges and other materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bloom, R.R.; Bonnema, B.E.; Navratil, J.D.; Falconer, K.L.; Van Vliet, J.A.; Diel, B.N.

    1995-01-01

    Rust's patented SOIL*EX process is designed to remove hazardous and radioactive contaminants from soils, sludges and a matrix of other materials while destroying volatile organic compounds often associated with contaminated soil and debris. The process is comprised of three major process operations. The first operation involves the dissolution of contaminants that are chemically or mechanically bonded to the solid phase. The second process operation involves separation of the solid phase from the dissolution solution (mother liquor), which contains the dissolved contaminants. The final operation concentrates and removes the contaminants from the mother liquor. A pilot-scale SOIL*EX system was constructed at Rust's Clemson Technical Center for a Proof-of-Process demonstration. The demonstration program included the design, fabrication, and operation of pilot scale and demonstration equipment and systems. The pilot plant, an accurate scaled-down version of a proposed full-scale treatment system, was operated for five months to demonstrate the efficiency of the overall process. The pilot plant test program focused on demonstrating that the SOIL*EX process would remove and concentrate the contaminants and destroy volatile organic compounds. The pilot plant processed nearly 20 tons of soils and sludges, and test results indicated that all contaminants of concern were removed. Additionally, Rust completed numerous bench scale tests to optimize the chemistry. This paper discusses the pilot plant test criteria and results along with the salient design features of the SOIL*EX system and planned improvements

  7. The Use of Adsorbent Materials of Improving the Characteristics of Polluted Soils, Part 1 Phytoremediation of Soils Polluted with Oil Products, Cultivated with Technical Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smaranda Masu

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available In this study are presented in pot experimental variants regarding alternatives to improve the characteristics of soils polluted with 74.12 ± 3.50 g·kg-1 D.M. total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH in order to apply the phytoremediation process using technical plants from the common flax (Linum usitatissimum. The harmful effects of TPH polluted soils to plants was reduced by using fly ash from thermal plant as temporary adsorbent of non-polar pollutants, petroleum products. The increase of water retention capacity of the soil was achieved by treatments with indigenous volcanic tuff. The lack of nutrients, based on N and P in soils contaminated with TPH rich in C compounds are completed using sewage sludge anaerobically stabilized. The use of appropriate amounts of fly ash and fertilizer agents in the presence of volcanic tuff caused the formation of strong networks of roots and rich harvests of plants, stems and seeds from the treated soil. The TPH reduction efficiency of TPH polluted soils treated with fly ash (TPH soil: fly ash ratio 12:1 wt. / wt. and anaerobically stabilized sewage sludge respectively indigenous volcanic tuff during one vegetative cycle of crops was in the range of 56.2 - 63.25 %.

  8. Scenario Analysis of Soil and Water Conservation in Xiejia Watershed Based on Improved CSLE Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jieying; Yu, Ming; Wu, Yong; Huang, Yao; Nie, Yawen

    2018-01-01

    According to the existing research results and related data, use the scenario analysis method, to evaluate the effects of different soil and water conservation measures on soil erosion in a small watershed. Based on the analysis of soil erosion scenarios and model simulation budgets in the study area, it is found that all scenarios simulated soil erosion rates are lower than the present situation of soil erosion in 2013. Soil and water conservation measures are more effective in reducing soil erosion than soil and water conservation biological measures and soil and water conservation tillage measures.

  9. Improving the geotechnical properties of expansive soils by mixture with olive mill wastewater

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ureña, C.; Azañón, J. M.; Corpas, F.; Nieto, F.; León-Buendía, C.

    2012-04-01

    In Southern Spain, Olive grove is an artificial forest which has a surface of 18.000 km2, representing more than 25% of olive oil world production. During the manufacturing process of this oil, different types of residues are generated. The most important is a biomass called olive mill wastewater. It is a dark colored liquid which can not be directly poured onto natural watercourses. On the one hand, part of this biomass is burnt to produce electrical energy or treated to make a bio-diesel. On the other hand, we propose the use of olive mill wastewater as a stabilization agent for expansive clayey soils. Using raw biomass as a stabilization agent two objectives are achieved: adding value to biomass and reducing the problems of expansive soils. Moreover, an important reduction of economic costs can take place. A pure bentonite clay was chosen as a sample of original expansive soil. It is abundant in Southern Spain and its main component is Na-Montmorillonite. Bentonite is very susceptible to changes in the environmental available moisture and very unsuitable for its use in civil engineering due to its low bearing capacity, high plasticity and volume changes. Several dosages (5%, 10%, 15%) of olive mill wastewater were added to the original sample of bentonite. To study eventual improvements in the mechanical properties of soil, Proctor, Atterberg Limits, California Bearing Ratio, Swelling Pressure and X-Ray Diffraction tests were carried out, following Spanish standards UNE by AENOR. Both geotechnical and mineralogical characterizations were developed at two different curing times: 15 and 30 days. The Plasticity Index (PI) of the original bentonite soil was 251 (High Plasticity). The addition of 15% of olive mill wastewater yielded reductions of PI similar to those produced by the addition of 5% of Portland cement. The California Bearing Ratio (CBR) values increased slightly after the treatment with biomass leading to very similar values to those obtained after the

  10. Soil Bacterial and Fungal Community Structure Across a Range of Unimproved and Semi-Improved Upland Grasslands

    OpenAIRE

    Kennedy, Nabla; Edwards, Suzanne; Clipson, Nicholas

    2005-01-01

    Changes in soil microbial community structure due to improvement are often attributed to concurrent shifts in floristic community composition. The bacterial and fungal communities of unimproved and semi-improved (as determined by floristic classification) grassland soils were studied at five upland sites on similar geological substrata using both broad-scale (microbial activity and fungal biomass) and molecular [terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (TRFLP)...

  11. The Role of Teak Leaves (Tectona grandis), Rhizobium, and Vesicular-Arbuscular Mycorrhizae on Improving Soil Structure and Soil Nutrition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuliani; Rahayu, Y. S.

    2018-01-01

    Calcium is the largest mineral in calcareous soils. High levels of calcium carbonate lead to phosphate deposition. Nutrient deficiencies in calcareous soil (mainly Phosphate and Nitrogen) resulted only certain crops with a wide range of tolerances that can grow. Meanwhile, dynamics nutrient in calcareous soils also depend on the topography and decomposition of the litter in the growing vegetation. The purpose of this study was to describe the pattern of nutrient enhancement and soil-texture structures on calcareous soils after littering the teak leaves, Rhizobium and Vesicular Arbuscular Mycorrhiza. The research parameters were the concentration of N, P, K; C/N ratio, humid acid content, and soil structure, which measured at days 30, 60, and 85 of soil decomposition process. The results showed that at days 30, the texture and structure of the soil tend to be stable (porosity 31.2, DMR 1.93, moisture content 0.36, sandy clay) while at days 85 has been very stable (porosity 49.8; Water content 0.28, sandy clay). While C and N organic, N and K concentration at days 30 showed low value (C organic 1.03, N 0.12, K 0.49, C / N ratio 9). This condition is almost unchanged at days 85. While the P value shows very high value (60.53) at days 30 although after 60 days the P content showed a decrease.

  12. Decentralization and Participatory Rural Development: A Literature Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad Shakil Ahmad

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Most of the developing nations are still struggling for efficient use of their resources. In order to overcome physical and administrative constraints of the development, it is necessary to transfer the power from the central government to local authorities. Distribution of power from improves the management of resources and community participation which is considered key to sustainable development. Advocates of decentralization argue that decentralized government is source to improve community participation in rural development. Decentralized government is considered more responsive towards local needs and development of poor peoples. There are many obstacles to expand the citizen participation in rural areas. There are many approaches for participatory development but all have to face the same challenges. Current paper highlights the literature about Decentralization and participatory rural development. Concept and modalities of Decentralization, dimensions of participation, types of rural participation and obstacles to participation are also the part of this paper.

  13. Participatory methods for initiating manufacturing employees' involvement in product innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Anna Rose Vagn; Jensen, Christian Schou; Broberg, Ole

    2016-01-01

    approach that we apply to two case companies, this paper presents an empirical study of how to initiate involvement of manufacturing employees in R&D activities. We have used participatory methods from design thinking that has the ability to create relations between employees from different backgrounds......Employee-driven innovation has the potential to improve product innovation by involving employees as innovative resources. However, it can be a challenge to turn the potential into a reality of collaboration practices across organizational structures and culture. Through an interactive research...... and through a series of facilitated workshops we have investigated how these methods can initiate employee involvement. We see that participatory methods can improve understanding and relation between R&D and manufacturing departments, and thereby support a creative collaboration and emergence of employee...

  14. Soil algae

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Timothy Ademakinwa

    Also, the importance of algae in soil formation and soil fertility improvement cannot be over ... The presence of nitrogen fixing microalgae (Nostoc azollae) in the top soil of both vegetable ..... dung, fish food and dirty water from fish ponds on.

  15. Linking precipitation, evapotranspiration and soil moisture content for the improvement of predictability over land

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catalano, Franco; Alessandri, Andrea; De Felice, Matteo

    2013-04-01

    Climate change scenarios are expected to show an intensification of the hydrological cycle together with modifications of evapotranspiration and soil moisture content. Evapotranspiration changes have been already evidenced for the end of the 20th century. The variance of evapotranspiration has been shown to be strongly related to the variance of precipitation over land. Nevertheless, the feedbacks between evapotranspiration, soil moisture and precipitation have not yet been completely understood at present-day. Furthermore, soil moisture reservoirs are associated to a memory and thus their proper initialization may have a strong influence on predictability. In particular, the linkage between precipitation and soil moisture is modulated by the effects on evapotranspiration. Therefore, the investigation of the coupling between these variables appear to be of primary importance for the improvement of predictability over the continents. The coupled manifold (CM) technique (Navarra and Tribbia 2005) is a method designed to separate the effects of the variability of two variables which are connected. This method has proved to be successful for the analysis of different climate fields, like precipitation, vegetation and sea surface temperature. In particular, the coupled variables reveal patterns that may be connected with specific phenomena, thus providing hints regarding potential predictability. In this study we applied the CM to recent observational datasets of precipitation (from CRU), evapotranspiration (from GIMMS and MODIS satellite-based estimates) and soil moisture content (from ESA) spanning a time period of 23 years (1984-2006) with a monthly frequency. Different data stratification (monthly, seasonal, summer JJA) have been employed to analyze the persistence of the patterns and their characteristical time scales and seasonality. The three variables considered show a significant coupling among each other. Interestingly, most of the signal of the

  16. Contradictions in participatory public art

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kortbek, Hjørdis Brandrup

    2018-01-01

    This article addresses the current focus within urban cultural policy on using art as a tool in urban development. Based on theories of participation, democracy and public art, the article sets out to investigate critically the concept of placemaking. The discussion is based on an analysis...... of the public art project, Placemaking that took place during 2015 in eight municipalities around Copenhagen in Denmark. I argue that, when used as a tool in urban development, participatory public art engenders contradictory encounters. These encounters challenge the cultural political effort to democratise...

  17. Rekindling Values in Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Iversen, Ole Sejer; Halskov, Kim; Leong, Tuck Wah

    2010-01-01

    Drawing from our PD projects, this paper shows how designers enact their appreciative judgment of values by engaging in a dynamic and dialogical process of cultivating the emergence of values, developing them, and supporting their grounding. The widespread of Participatory Design (PD), have meant...... that different approaches and conceptualization exist in this field today. We argue that one fruitful approach is to rekindle a concern for values in PD—to return to one of the original tenets of PD. This requires focusing upon values as the engine that drives our activities in PD....

  18. Values-Led Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Iversen, Ole Sejer; Halskov, Kim; Leong, Tuck Wah

    2012-01-01

    The widespread use of participatory design (PD) has meant that different approaches and conceptualisations exist in this field today. In this article, it is argued that one fruitful approach is to rekindle a concern for values in design, focusing upon values as the engine that drives activities...... in PD. Drawing from the authors‘ own PD projects, this article shows how this can be accomplished: through designers enacting their appreciative judgement of values by engaging in a dynamic and dialogical process of cultivating the emergence of values, developing them and supporting their grounding....

  19. Participatory forest management in Ethiopia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yietagesu, Aklilu Ameha; Larsen, Helle Overgaard; Lemenih, Mulugeta

    2014-01-01

    Different arrangements of decentralized forest management have been promoted as alternatives to centralized and top down approaches to halt tropical deforestation and forest degradation. Ethiopia is one of the countries piloting one of these approaches. To inform future programs and projects...... it is essential to learn from existing pilots and experiences. This paper analyses five of the pilot participatory forest management (PFM) programs undertaken in Ethiopia. The study is based on the Forest User Group (FUG) members’ analyses of the programs using selected outcome variables: forest income, change...

  20. Participatory Action Research in Health Systems: Empowering ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    2 déc. 2014 ... For example, when staff at TARSC asked people in participatory ... The reader includes several examples of successful participatory action research. ... au forum « Think Big: Women in Business » à Delhi, le 9 octobre 2015.

  1. The American Dream, Democracy, and Participatory Theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, George H.

    1983-01-01

    America has moved from participatory democracy to protective democracy, with political elites making the decisions. The result has been a culturally disenfranchised people abandoning the political system which does not want them. Calls for a return to participatory democracy and citizenship education programs which foster it. (CS)

  2. Civic Political Culture, Participatory Governance and Political ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Prof

    This study x-rayed the significance of civic political culture on participatory governance and its .... The literature on participatory governance theory assumes that deliberation is key to effective .... factors and capture all considerations involved in making certain that citizen interests .... vital element in any organization.

  3. Exploring and Implementing Participatory Action Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wimpenny, Katherine; Savin-Baden, Maggi

    2012-01-01

    This article presents participatory action synthesis as a new approach to qualitative synthesis which may be used to facilitate the promotion and use of qualitative research for policy and practice. The authors begin by outlining different forms of qualitative research synthesis and then present participatory action synthesis, a collaborative…

  4. Participatory development planning in Botswana: Exploring the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    the significance of public participation in planning is the ... to participatory planning, Botswana's planning system remains non-participatory. What is perceived as a ..... Administration. Despite the above, the. Tribal Administration remains important to the development planning efforts in Botswana. This could be attributed.

  5. Do plant-based amendments improve soil physiochemical and microbiological properties and plant growth in dryland ecosystems?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kneller, Tayla; Harris, Richard; Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam

    2017-04-01

    Background Land intensive practices including mining have contributed to the degradation of landscapes globally. Current challenges in post-mine restoration revolve around the use of substrates poor in organic materials (e.g. overburden and waste rock) and lack of original topsoil which may result in poor seedling recruitment and in later stages in soil nutrient deficiency, metal toxicity, decreased microbial activity and high salinity (Bateman et al., 2016; Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2016). Despite continuous efforts and advances we have not proportionally advanced our capability to successfully restore these landscapes following mining. Recent attempts to improve plant establishment in arid zone restoration programs have included the application of plant based amendments to soil profiles. This approach usually aims to accelerate soil reconstruction via improvement of soil aggregate stability and increase of soil organic carbon, and water holding capacity. Whilst a significant amount of recent research has focused on the application of such amendments, studies on the potential application of plant based materials to recover soil functionality and re-establish plant communities in post-mined landscapes in arid regions are limited. Here we will discuss our work investigating the application of a plant based amendment on soil substrates commonly used in post mining restoration in the Pilbara region, Western Australia. Methodology The study was conducted in a glasshouse facility where environmental conditions were continuously monitored. Using two growth materials (topsoil and waste rock) and a plant based amendment (dry biomass of the most common grass in the Pilbara, Triodia wiseana) five different treatments were tested. Treatments consisted of control soil treatments (topsoil, waste and a mixture of the former soil types (mixture)) and two amended soil treatments (waste amended and mixture amended). Additionally, three different vegetation communities were studies

  6. Use of Bacillus thuringiensis supernatant from a fermentation process to improve bioremediation of chlorpyrifos in contaminated soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aceves-Diez, Angel E; Estrada-Castañeda, Kelly J; Castañeda-Sandoval, Laura M

    2015-07-01

    The aim of this research was to investigate the potential of a nutrient-rich organic waste, namely the cell-free supernatant of Bacillus thuringiensis (BtS) gathered from fermentation, as a biostimulating agent to improve and sustain microbial populations and their enzymatic activities, thereby assisting in the bioremediation of chlorpyrifos-contaminated soil at a high dose (70 mg kg(-1)). Experiments were performed for up to 80 d. Chlorpyrifos degradation and its major metabolic product, 3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol (TCP), were quantified by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC); total microbial populations were enumerated by direct counts in specific medium; and fluorescein diacetate (FDA) hydrolysis was measured as an index of soil microbial activity. Throughout the experiment, there was higher chlorpyrifos degradation in soil supplemented with BtS (83.1%) as compared to non-supplemented soil. TCP formation and degradation occurred in all soils, but the greatest degradation (30.34%) was observed in soil supplemented with BtS. The total microbial populations were significantly improved by supplementation with BtS. The application of chlorpyrifos to soil inhibited the enzymatic activity; however, this negative effect was counteracted by BtS, inducing an increase of approximately 16% in FDA hydrolysis. These results demonstrate the potential of B. thuringiensis supernatant as a suitable biostimulation agent for enhancing chlorpyrifos and TCP biodegradation in chlorpyrifos-contaminated soils. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Comparative research on tillable properties of diatomite-improved soils in the Yangtze River Delta region, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qu, Ji-Li; Zhao, Dong-Xue

    2016-10-15

    To improve soil texture and structure, techniques associated with physical, biological or chemical aspects are generally adopted, among which diatomite is an important soil conditioner. However, few studies have been conducted to investigate the physical, hydraulic and tillage performance of diatomite-improved soils. Consistency limits and compaction properties were investigated in this study, and several performance indicators were compared, such as the liquid limit, plastic limit and compactability, of silt, silt loam and silty-clay loam soils to which diatomite was added at volumetric ratios of 0%, 10%, 20%, and 30%. The results showed that diatomite significantly (pdiatomite lowered the maximum dry bulk density (MBD) of the classified soils, the optimum moisture content (OMC) was increased overall. The trend was consistent with the proportion of diatomite, and MBD decreased by 8.7%, 10.3%, and 13.2% in the silt, silt loam and silty-clay loam soils when 30% diatomite was mixed, whereas OMC increased by 28.7%, 22.4%, and 25.3%, respectively. Additionally, aggregate stability was negatively correlated with MBD but positively correlated with OMC. Diatomite exerts positive effects on soil mechanical strength, suggesting that soils from sludge farms are more tillable with a larger stabilized and workable matrix. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Can Physiological Endpoints Improve the Sensitivity of Assays with Plants in the Risk Assessment of Contaminated Soils?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gavina, Ana; Antunes, Sara C.; Pinto, Glória; Claro, Maria Teresa; Santos, Conceição; Gonçalves, Fernando; Pereira, Ruth

    2013-01-01

    Site-specific risk assessment of contaminated areas indicates prior areas for intervention, and provides helpful information for risk managers. This study was conducted in the Ervedosa mine area (Bragança, Portugal), where both underground and open pit exploration of tin and arsenic minerals were performed for about one century (1857 – 1969). We aimed at obtaining ecotoxicological information with terrestrial and aquatic plant species to integrate in the risk assessment of this mine area. Further we also intended to evaluate if the assessment of other parameters, in standard assays with terrestrial plants, can improve the identification of phytotoxic soils. For this purpose, soil samples were collected on 16 sampling sites distributed along four transects, defined within the mine area, and in one reference site. General soil physical and chemical parameters, total and extractable metal contents were analyzed. Assays were performed for soil elutriates and for the whole soil matrix following standard guidelines for growth inhibition assay with Lemna minor and emergence and seedling growth assay with Zea mays. At the end of the Z. mays assay, relative water content, membrane permeability, leaf area, content of photosynthetic pigments (chlorophylls and carotenoids), malondialdehyde levels, proline content, and chlorophyll fluorescence (Fv/Fm and ΦPSII) parameters were evaluated. In general, the soils near the exploration area revealed high levels of Al, Mn, Fe and Cu. Almost all the soils from transepts C, D and F presented total concentrations of arsenic well above soils screening benchmark values available. Elutriates of several soils from sampling sites near the exploration and ore treatment areas were toxic to L. minor, suggesting that the retention function of these soils was seriously compromised. In Z. mays assay, plant performance parameters (other than those recommended by standard protocols), allowed the identification of more phytotoxic soils. The

  9. Can physiological endpoints improve the sensitivity of assays with plants in the risk assessment of contaminated soils?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Gavina

    Full Text Available Site-specific risk assessment of contaminated areas indicates prior areas for intervention, and provides helpful information for risk managers. This study was conducted in the Ervedosa mine area (Bragança, Portugal, where both underground and open pit exploration of tin and arsenic minerals were performed for about one century (1857-1969. We aimed at obtaining ecotoxicological information with terrestrial and aquatic plant species to integrate in the risk assessment of this mine area. Further we also intended to evaluate if the assessment of other parameters, in standard assays with terrestrial plants, can improve the identification of phytotoxic soils. For this purpose, soil samples were collected on 16 sampling sites distributed along four transects, defined within the mine area, and in one reference site. General soil physical and chemical parameters, total and extractable metal contents were analyzed. Assays were performed for soil elutriates and for the whole soil matrix following standard guidelines for growth inhibition assay with Lemna minor and emergence and seedling growth assay with Zea mays. At the end of the Z. mays assay, relative water content, membrane permeability, leaf area, content of photosynthetic pigments (chlorophylls and carotenoids, malondialdehyde levels, proline content, and chlorophyll fluorescence (Fv/Fm and ΦPSII parameters were evaluated. In general, the soils near the exploration area revealed high levels of Al, Mn, Fe and Cu. Almost all the soils from transepts C, D and F presented total concentrations of arsenic well above soils screening benchmark values available. Elutriates of several soils from sampling sites near the exploration and ore treatment areas were toxic to L. minor, suggesting that the retention function of these soils was seriously compromised. In Z. mays assay, plant performance parameters (other than those recommended by standard protocols, allowed the identification of more phytotoxic soils

  10. Improvement of phytoremediation of an aged petroleum hydrocarbon-contaminated soil by Rhodococcus erythropolis CD 106 strain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Płociniczak, Tomasz; Fic, Ewa; Pacwa-Płociniczak, Magdalena; Pawlik, Małgorzata; Piotrowska-Seget, Zofia

    2017-07-03

    The aim of this study was to assess the impact of soil inoculation with the Rhodococcus erythropolis CD 106 strain on the effectiveness of the phytoremediation of an aged hydrocarbon-contaminated [approx. 1% total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH)] soil using ryegrass (Lolium perenne). The introduction of CD 106 into the soil significantly increased the biomass of ryegrass and the removal of hydrocarbons in planted soil. The fresh weight of the shoots and roots of plants inoculated with CD 106 increased by 49% and 30%, respectively. After 210 days of the experiment, the concentration of TPH was reduced by 31.2%, whereas in the planted, non-inoculated soil, it was reduced by 16.8%. By contrast, the concentration of petroleum hydrocarbon decreased by 18.7% in non-planted soil bioaugmented with the CD 106 strain. The rifampicin-resistant CD 106 strain survived after inoculation into soil and was detected in the soil during the entire experimental period, but the number of CD 106 cells decreased constantly during the enhanced phytoremediation and bioaugmentation experiments. The plant growth-promoting and hydrocarbon-degrading properties of CD 106, which are connected with its long-term survival and limited impact on autochthonous microflora, make this strain a good candidate for improving the phytoremediation efficiency of soil contaminated with hydrocarbons.

  11. Learning from participatory design projects across industries

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Broberg, Ole; Souza da Conceição, Carolina

    2017-01-01

    Summative Statement: A preliminary framework for participatory design projects (PDP) was developed based on a retrospective analysis of five PDPs across different industries. The framework may serve as a guidance for planning and conducting PDPs. Problem statement: A growing number of experiences...... with participatory design or participatory ergonomics projects have been gained within the field of macro-ergonomics. It is suggested that the Participatory Ergonomics Framework (PEF) validated by Haines et al. (2002) needs to be updated based on these experiences and hence more focussed on design activities....... Research Objective / Question: The objective of this study was to update and design-orient the PEF based on experiences with PDPs within the last ten years. Methodology: Five participatory design projects across different industries were systematically analyzed and compared in order to develop a framework...

  12. Long-term application of bioorganic fertilizers improved soil biochemical properties and microbial communities of an apple orchard soil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Lei

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Soil biochemical properties and microbial communities are usually considered as important indicators of soil health because of their association with plant nutrition. In this study, we investigated the impact of long-term application of bioorganic fertilizer (BOF on soil biochemical properties and microbial communities in the apple orchard soil of the Loess Plateau. The experiment included three treatments: (1 control without fertilization (CK; (2 chemical fertilizer application (CF; and (3 bioorganic fertilizer application (BOF. The high throughput sequencing was used to examine the bacterial and fungal communities in apple orchard soil. The results showed that the BOF treatment significantly increased the apple yield during the experimental time (2009-2015. The application of BOF significantly increased the activities of catalase and invertase compared to those in CK and CF treatments. The high throughput sequencing data showed that the application of BOF changed the microbial community composition of all soil depths considered (0-20cm, 20-40cm, and 40-60cm, e.g., the relative abundance of bio-control bacteria (Xanthomonadales, Lysobacter, Pseudomonas and Bacillus, Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Ohtaekwangia, Ilyonectria and Lecanicillium was increased while that of Acidobacteria, Chloroflexi, Gp4, Gp6 and Sphaerobacter was decreased. The increase in apple yield after the application of BOF might be due to increase in organic matter, total nitrogen and catalase and invertase activities of soil and change in the bacterial community composition by enriching Bacillus, Pseudomonas, Lysobacter and Ohtaekwangia. These results further enhance the understanding on how BOFs alter soil microbial community composition to stimulate soil productivity.

  13. Improvement of Faba Bean Yield Using Rhizobium/Agrobacterium Inoculant in Low-Fertility Sandy Soil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sameh H. Youseif

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Soil fertility is one of the major limiting factors for crop’s productivity in Egypt and the world in general. Biological nitrogen fixation (BNF has a great importance as a non-polluting and a cost-effective way to improve soil fertility through supplying N to different agricultural systems. Faba bean (Vicia faba L. is one of the most efficient nitrogen-fixing legumes that can meet all of their N needs through BNF. Therefore, understanding the impact of rhizobial inoculation and contrasting soil rhizobia on nodulation and N2 fixation in faba bean is crucial to optimize the crop yield, particularly under low fertility soil conditions. This study investigated the symbiotic effectiveness of 17 Rhizobium/Agrobacterium strains previously isolated from different Egyptian governorates in improving the nodulation and N2 fixation in faba bean cv. Giza 843 under controlled greenhouse conditions. Five strains that had a high nitrogen-fixing capacity under greenhouse conditions were subsequently tested in field trials as faba bean inoculants at Ismaillia Governorate in northeast Egypt in comparison with the chemical N-fertilization treatment (96 kg N·ha−1. A starter N-dose (48 kg N·ha−1 was applied in combination with different Rhizobium inoculants. The field experiments were established at sites without a background of inoculation under low fertility sandy soil conditions over two successive winter growing seasons, 2012/2013 and 2013/2014. Under greenhouse conditions, inoculated plants produced significantly higher nodules dry weight, plant biomass, and shoot N-uptake than non-inoculated ones. In the first season (2012/2013, inoculation of field-grown faba bean showed significant improvements in seed yield (3.73–4.36 ton·ha−1 and seed N-yield (138–153 Kg N·ha−1, which were higher than the uninoculated control (48 kg N·ha−1 that produced 2.97 Kg·ha−1 and 95 kg N·ha−1, respectively. Similarly, in the second season (2013

  14. Density-dependent microbial turnover improves soil carbon model predictions of long-term litter manipulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Georgiou, Katerina; Abramoff, Rose; Harte, John; Riley, William; Torn, Margaret

    2017-04-01

    Climatic, atmospheric, and land-use changes all have the potential to alter soil microbial activity via abiotic effects on soil or mediated by changes in plant inputs. Recently, many promising microbial models of soil organic carbon (SOC) decomposition have been proposed to advance understanding and prediction of climate and carbon (C) feedbacks. Most of these models, however, exhibit unrealistic oscillatory behavior and SOC insensitivity to long-term changes in C inputs. Here we diagnose the sources of instability in four models that span the range of complexity of these recent microbial models, by sequentially adding complexity to a simple model to include microbial physiology, a mineral sorption isotherm, and enzyme dynamics. We propose a formulation that introduces density-dependence of microbial turnover, which acts to limit population sizes and reduce oscillations. We compare these models to results from 24 long-term C-input field manipulations, including the Detritus Input and Removal Treatment (DIRT) experiments, to show that there are clear metrics that can be used to distinguish and validate the inherent dynamics of each model structure. We find that widely used first-order models and microbial models without density-dependence cannot readily capture the range of long-term responses observed across the DIRT experiments as a direct consequence of their model structures. The proposed formulation improves predictions of long-term C-input changes, and implies greater SOC storage associated with CO2-fertilization-driven increases in C inputs over the coming century compared to common microbial models. Finally, we discuss our findings in the context of improving microbial model behavior for inclusion in Earth System Models.

  15. Mitigation of soil water repellency improves rootzone water status and yield in precision irrigated apples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kostka, S.; Gadd, N.; Bell, D.

    2009-04-01

    Water repellent soils are documented to impact a range of hydrological properties, yet studies evaluating the consequences of soil water repellency (SWR) and its mitigation on crop yield and quality are conspicuously absent. With global concerns on drought and water availability and the projected impacts of climate change, development of novel strategies to optimize efficient rootzone delivery of water are required. Co-formulations of alkyl polyglycoside (APG) and ethylene oxide-propylene oxide (EO/PO) block copolymer surfactants have been shown to improve wetting synergistically. The objectives of this study were to determine if this surfactant technology: 1) increased soil water content and wetting front depth in mini-sprinkler irrigated, water repellent, Goulburn Valley clay loam soils and 2) assess the consequence of SWR mitigation on yield of Malus domestica Borkh. Three trials were conducted in the apple varieties 'Pink Lady' (2006/07 and 2007/08) and 'Gala' (2007/08) growing on Goulburn Valley clay loam soils in Victoria, AU. The test design was a randomized complete block with treatments replicated 5-6 times. Plot size varied by location. SWR was mitigated by applying surfactant at initial rates of 0, 5, or 10 L ha-1 in the spring, then at 0, 2.5, or 5 L ha-1 monthly for up to four months and compared to an untreated control. Treatments were applied to tree lines using a hand held small plot sprayer (118 liters of spray solution ha-1) followed by irrigation within 1-3 days of treatment applications. At each location, plots were irrigated by mini sprinklers and received the same irrigation volumes and management practices. Soil volumetric water content (VWC) was monitored at depths of 0-10 and 10-20 cm using a Theta probe (Delta-T Devices, Cambridge, UK). At harvest, fruit number and weights were measured and used for crop yield estimations. Data were analyzed using analysis of variance with mean values summarized and separated using Least Significant Test

  16. Soil amendments improve microbial ecology parameters of "topsoil inoculum" used in post-mining restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumaresan, Deepak; Munoz-Rojas, Miriam; Moreira-Grez, Benjamin; Kariman, Khalil; Whiteley, Andrew

    2017-04-01

    Mine operations generate substantial volumes of waste substrates, which are crushed and/or chemically treated waste rock from which ores are extracted. Establishment of rehabilitated landforms using post-mining substrates (i.e. waste rocks, tailings) that typically exhibit extreme conditions (such as high pH, nutrient deficiency, excessive salinity and metal toxicity) can be a major environmental problem and a critical issue during mine closure operations. More importantly, mine sites are located predominantly in arid or semi-arid lands where our understanding of basic ecosystem processes and microbial interactions with native plants (e.g. Eucalyptus spp., Acacia spp., Grevillea spp. in Western Australia) are limited. Despite the wide acknowledgement on the impact of microbial functional diversity on overall soil and plant health, no detailed attention has been paid to understand the role of belowground microbial functional diversity in the context of mine rehabilitation strategies. In this research, we investigated the role of nitrogen-based and microbial consortia amendments on improving the microbial ecology parameters of "topsoil inoculum" and subsequently its cascading effect on seedling establishment and plant morphology of Acacia ancistrocarpa, a legume native to the Pilbara and other regions of Western Australia and commonly used in arid zone restoration. The study was conducted under controlled environmental conditions in potted plants using topsoil retrieved from previously stockpiled material as growth media. A morphological assessment was undertaken to measure shoot length, shoot weight, root length, root area and root weight. Soil chemical properties, e.g. carbon, nitrogen and trace metals concentrations were determined Microbial activity was measured with the 1-day CO2 test, which determines soil microbial respiration rate based on the measurement of the CO2 burst produced after moistening dry soil (Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2016). Bacterial and archaeal

  17. Monitoring biocalcification potential of Lysinibacillus sp. isolated from alluvial soils for improved compressive strength of concrete.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vashisht, Rajneesh; Attri, Sampan; Sharma, Deepak; Shukla, Abhilash; Goel, Gunjan

    2018-03-01

    The present study reports the potential of newly isolated calcite precipitating bacteria isolated from alluvial soil to improve the strength and durability of concrete. A total of sixteen samples of alluvial soil and sewage were collected from the different locations of province Solan (India). For isolation, enrichment culture technique was used to enrich calcite precipitating strains in Urea broth. After enrichment, fourteen distinct bacterial strains were obtained on Urea agar. Based on qualitative and quantitative screening for urease activity, five isolates were obtained possessing higher calcite formation and urease activities (38-77 μmhos/cm) as compared with standard strain of Bacillus megaterium MTCC 1684 (77 μmhos/cm). An isolate I13 identified as Lysinibacillus sp. was selected for self healing property in the concrete mix of M20. An improved compressive strength of 1.5 fold was observed in concrete samples amended with Lysinibacillus sp. over the concrete amended with B. megaterium MTCC 1684 after 28 days of curing. The higher calcite precipitation activity was indicated in Lysinibacillus sp. by FE-SEM micrographs and EDX analysis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  18. [Progress in improvement of continuous monoculture cropping problem in Panax ginseng by controlling soil-borne disease management].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Rui; Dong, Lin-Lin; Xu, Jiang; Chen, Jun-Wen; Li, Xi-Wen; Chen, Shi-Lin

    2016-11-01

    The continuous monoculture cropping problem severely has hindered the land resource of Panax ginseng cultivation and threatened the sustainable development of ginseng industry. There are comprehensive factors causing the continuous monoculture cropping problem, such as deterioration of soil physical and chemical properties, accumulation of allelochemical, increase of pesticide residue and heavy metal, imbalance of rhizospheric micro-ecosystem, and increase of soil-borne diseases. Among soil-borne disease was one of the key factors. More than 40 soil-borne diseases have been reported in the ginseng cultivation, especially, the diseases were more serious in the ginseng replanting land. Here main soil-borne diseases and their prevention way have been summarized, and we try to provide the effective improvement strategy of continuous monoculture cropping problem focusing on the disease control and offer reference for overcoming the ginseng continuous monoculture cropping problem. Copyright© by the Chinese Pharmaceutical Association.

  19. Quality Improvement of the Satellite Soil Moisture Products by Fusing In Situ and GNSS-R Observation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Q.; Xu, H.; Li, T.; Shen, H.; Zhang, L.

    2017-12-01

    model fitted ubRMSE decrease to 0.068 for SMOS and 0.071 for SMAP, respectively. The assessment of the model indicates that the approach used in this study has the capacity to provide reasonable information for improving the quality of the satellite-derived soil moisture products in western continental U.S.

  20. Feedback of the behaviour of a silo founded on a compressible soil improved by floating stone columns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bahar Ramdane

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The coastal city of Bejaia, located 250 kilometers east of the capital Algiers, Algeria, is characterized by soft soils. The residual grounds encountered on the first 40 meters usually have a low bearing capacity, high compressibility, insufficient strength, and subject to the risk of liquefaction. These unfavorable soil conditions require deep foundations or soil improvement. Since late 1990s, stone columns technique is used to improve the weak soils of the harbor area of the city. A shallow raft foundation on soft soil improved by stone columns was designed for a heavy storage steel silo and two towers. The improvement of 18m depth have not reached the substratum located at 39m depth. The stresses transmitted to the service limit state are variable 73 to 376 kPa. A rigorous and ongoing monitoring of the evolution of loads in the silo and settlements of the soil was carried out during 1400 days that is from the construction of foundations in 2008 to 2012. After the loading of the silo in 2010, settlement occurred affecting the stability of the towers due to excessive differential settlements. Consequently, the towers were inclined and damaged the transporter. This paper presents and discusses the experience feedback of the behavior of these structures. Numerical calculations by finite elements have been carried and the results are compared with the measurements.

  1. Sustaining Participatory Design in the organization - Infrastructuring with Participatory Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bolmsten, Johan

    Modern organizations need to be able to change to seize opportunities and meet challenges, which are ever more rapidly presenting themselves. In doing so, they need to make use of the creativity and innovations of their employees. At the same time Information Technology applications today...... are likely to take the form of complex, integrated infrastructures, supporting collaboration within and across organizations. This places requirements on the development of IT infrastructures. As the work practices within an organization change, the supporting infrastructure also needs to evolve. This Ph......D thesis is about sustaining Participatory Design in the organization to enable users to influence the development of the IT infrastructure that supports their work practices. The empirical research is based on a long-term action research study, where this researcher works as an embedded researcher...

  2. To each participatory sciences. Conditions for a participatory biodiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denis SALLES

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper considers the social and scientific requirements for a citizen science monitoring programme on biodiversity in Arcachon Bay (France. The sociological study reveals tensions between different conceptions of what a citizen science programme should be: a means for storing oriented-data; a new way to co-create scientific knowledge; a political communication tool; a way to develop citizen stewardship; or a place for expressing activist environmental demands. Citizen science programmes also tend to reveal tensions between participatory governance and classical management of environmental issues. Despite a seeming consensus amongst actors on biodiversity conservation, in practice contests over different citizen science conceptions have the potential to re-define environmental issues, to re-specify relationships between science and society and outline new management priorities.

  3. Judging children's participatory parity from social justice and the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This article proposes a model for judging children's participatory parity in different social spaces. The notion of participatory parity originates in Nancy Fraser's normative theory for social justice, where it concerns the participatory status of adults. What, then, constitutes participatory parity for children? How should we judge ...

  4. Biochar Improves Soil Aggregate Stability and Water Availability in a Mollisol after Three Years of Field Application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Ningning; Zhang, Lili; Zhang, Yulan; Yang, Lijie; Yu, Chunxiao; Yin, Guanghua; Doane, Timothy A; Wu, Zhijie; Zhu, Ping; Ma, Xingzhu

    2016-01-01

    A field experiment was carried out to evaluate the effect of organic amendments on soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, bulk density, aggregate stability, field capacity and plant available water in a representative Chinese Mollisol. Four treatments were as follows: no fertilization (CK), application of inorganic fertilizer (NPK), combined application of inorganic fertilizer with maize straw (NPK+S) and addition of biochar with inorganic fertilizer (NPK+B). Our results showed that after three consecutive years of application, the values of soil bulk density were significantly lower in both organic amendment-treated plots than in unamended (CK and NPK) plots. Compared with NPK, NPK+B more effectively increased the contents of soil organic carbon, improved the relative proportion of soil macro-aggregates and mean weight diameter, and enhanced field capacity as well as plant available water. Organic amendments had no obvious effect on soil C/N ratio or wilting coefficient. The results of linear regression indicated that the improvement in soil water retention could be attributed to the increases in soil organic carbon and aggregate stability.

  5. Biochar Improves Soil Aggregate Stability and Water Availability in a Mollisol after Three Years of Field Application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yulan; Yang, Lijie; Yu, Chunxiao; Yin, Guanghua; Doane, Timothy A.; Wu, Zhijie; Zhu, Ping; Ma, Xingzhu

    2016-01-01

    A field experiment was carried out to evaluate the effect of organic amendments on soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, bulk density, aggregate stability, field capacity and plant available water in a representative Chinese Mollisol. Four treatments were as follows: no fertilization (CK), application of inorganic fertilizer (NPK), combined application of inorganic fertilizer with maize straw (NPK+S) and addition of biochar with inorganic fertilizer (NPK+B). Our results showed that after three consecutive years of application, the values of soil bulk density were significantly lower in both organic amendment-treated plots than in unamended (CK and NPK) plots. Compared with NPK, NPK+B more effectively increased the contents of soil organic carbon, improved the relative proportion of soil macro-aggregates and mean weight diameter, and enhanced field capacity as well as plant available water. Organic amendments had no obvious effect on soil C/N ratio or wilting coefficient. The results of linear regression indicated that the improvement in soil water retention could be attributed to the increases in soil organic carbon and aggregate stability. PMID:27191160

  6. Symbiosis of Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi and Robinia pseudoacacia L. Improves Root Tensile Strength and Soil Aggregate Stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Haoqiang; Liu, Zhenkun; Chen, Hui; Tang, Ming

    2016-01-01

    Robinia pseudoacacia L. (black locust) is a widely planted tree species on Loess Plateau for revegetation. Due to its symbiosis forming capability with arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi, we explored the influence of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi on plant biomass, root morphology, root tensile strength and soil aggregate stability in a pot experiment. We inoculated R. pseudoacacia with/without AM fungus (Rhizophagus irregularis or Glomus versiforme), and measured root colonization, plant growth, root morphological characters, root tensile force and tensile strength, and parameters for soil aggregate stability at twelve weeks after inoculation. AM fungi colonized more than 70% plant root, significantly improved plant growth. Meanwhile, AM fungi elevated root morphological parameters, root tensile force, root tensile strength, Glomalin-related soil protein (GRSP) content in soil, and parameters for soil aggregate stability such as water stable aggregate (WSA), mean weight diameter (MWD) and geometric mean diameter (GMD). Root length was highly correlated with WSA, MWD and GMD, while hyphae length was highly correlated with GRSP content. The improved R. pseudoacacia growth, root tensile strength and soil aggregate stability indicated that AM fungi could accelerate soil fixation and stabilization with R. pseudoacacia, and its function in revegetation on Loess Plateau deserves more attention.

  7. Biochar Improves Soil Aggregate Stability and Water Availability in a Mollisol after Three Years of Field Application.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ningning Ma

    Full Text Available A field experiment was carried out to evaluate the effect of organic amendments on soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, bulk density, aggregate stability, field capacity and plant available water in a representative Chinese Mollisol. Four treatments were as follows: no fertilization (CK, application of inorganic fertilizer (NPK, combined application of inorganic fertilizer with maize straw (NPK+S and addition of biochar with inorganic fertilizer (NPK+B. Our results showed that after three consecutive years of application, the values of soil bulk density were significantly lower in both organic amendment-treated plots than in unamended (CK and NPK plots. Compared with NPK, NPK+B more effectively increased the contents of soil organic carbon, improved the relative proportion of soil macro-aggregates and mean weight diameter, and enhanced field capacity as well as plant available water. Organic amendments had no obvious effect on soil C/N ratio or wilting coefficient. The results of linear regression indicated that the improvement in soil water retention could be attributed to the increases in soil organic carbon and aggregate stability.

  8. Using Biochar composts for improving sandy vineyard soils while reducing the risk of

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kammann, Claudia; Mengel, Jonathan; Mohr, Julia; Muskat, Stefan; Schmidt, Hans-Peter; Löhnertz, Otmar

    2016-04-01

    In recent years, biochar has increasingly been discussed as an option for sustainable environmentalmanagement, combining C sequestration with the aim of soil fertility improvement. Biochar has shownpositive effects in viticulture before (Genesio et al. 2015) which were largely attributed to improved water supply to the plants. However, in fertile temperate soils, the use of pure, untreated biochar does not guarantee economic benefits on the farm level (Ruysschaert et al., 2016). Hence, recent approaches started introducing biochar in management of nutrient-rich agricultural waste, e.g. in compost production (Kammann et al. 2015). Compost is frequently used in German vineyards for humus buildup and as a slow-release organic fertilizer. This, and increasingly mild, precipitation-rich winters, promoting mineralization, increase the risk of unwanted nitrate leaching losses into surface and ground waters during winter. To investigate if biochar pure, or biochar-compost mixtures and -products may have the potential to reduce nitrate leaching, we set up the following experiment: Either 30 or 60 t ha-1 of the following additives were mixed into the top 30 cm of sandy soil in large (120 L) containers, and planted with oneRiesling grapevine (Clone 198-30 GM) per container: Control (no addition), pure woody biochar, pure compost, biochar-compost (produced from the same organic feedstock than the compost, with 20 vol. - % of a woody biochar added), and pure compost plus pure biochar (same mixing ratio as in the former product). Once monthly, containers were exposed to simulated heavy rainfall that caused drainage. Leachates were collected from an outlet at the bottom of the containers, and analyzed for nutrients. The nutrient-rich additives containing compost all improved grape biomass and yield, most markedly pure compost and biochar-compost; same amendments were not significantly different. However,while the addition of the lower amount (30 t ha-1) of compost reduced nitrate

  9. Use of in situ volumetric water content at field capacity to improve prediction of soil water retention properties

    OpenAIRE

    Al Majou , Hassan; Bruand , Ary; Duval , Odile

    2008-01-01

    International audience; Use of in situ volumetric water content at field capacity to improve prediction of soil water retention properties. Most pedotransfer functions (PTFs) developed over the last three decades to generate water retention characteristics use soil texture, bulk density and organic carbon content as predictors. Despite of the high number of PTFs published, most being class- or continuous-PTFs, accuracy of prediction remains limited. In this study, we compared the performance ...

  10. Pig manure vermicompost (PMVC) can improve phytoremediation of Cd and PAHs co-contaminated soil by Sedum alfredii

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Kai; Zhang, Jie; Huang, Huagang; Li, Tingqiang; Yang, Xiaoe [Zhejiang Univ., Hangzhou (China). MOE Key Laboratory of Environment Remediation and Ecosystem Health; Zhu, Zhiqiang [Zhejiang Univ., Hangzhou (China). MOE Key Laboratory of Environment Remediation and Ecosystem Health; Hainan Univ., Haikou (China). College of Agriculture; He, Zehnli [Florida Univ., Fort Pierce (United States). Indian River Research and Education Center; Alva, Ashok [U.S. Department of Agriculture, Prosser, WA (United States). Agricultural Research Service

    2012-08-15

    Purpose: A major challenge to phytoremediation of co-contaminated soils is developing strategies for efficient and simultaneous removal of multiple pollutants. A pot experiment was conducted to investigate the potential for enhanced phytoextraction of cadmium (Cd) by Sedum alfredii and dissipation of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in co-contaminated soil by application of pig manure vermicompost (PMVC). Materials and methods: Soil contaminated by Cd (5.53 mg kg{sup -1} DW) was spiked with phenanthrene, anthracene, and pyrene together (250 mg kg{sup -1} DW for each PAH). A pot experiment was conducted in a greenhouse with four treatments: (1) soil without plants and PMVC (Control), (2) soil planted with S. alfredii (Plant), (3) soil amended with PMVC at 5 % (w/w) (PMVC), and (4) treatment 2 + 3 (Plant + PMVC). After 90 days, shoot and root biomass of plants, Cd concentrations in plant and soil, and PAH concentrations in soil were determined. Abundance of PAH degraders in soil, soil bacterial community structure and diversity, and soil enzyme activities and microbial biomass carbon were measured. Results and discussion: Application of PMVC to co-contaminated soil increased the shoot and root dry biomass of S. alfredii by 2.27- and 3.93-fold, respectively, and simultaneously increased Cd phytoextraction without inhibiting soil microbial population and enzyme activities. The highest dissipation rate of PAHs was observed in Plant + PMVC treatment. However, neither S. alfredii nor PMVC enhanced PAH dissipation when applied separately. Abundance of PAH degraders in soil was not significantly related to PAH dissipation rate. Plant + PMVC treatment significantly influenced the bacterial community structure. Enhanced PAH dissipation in the Plant + PMVC treatment could be due to the improvement of plant root growth, which may result in increased root exudates, and subsequently change bacterial community structure to be favorable for PAH dissipation. Conclusions: This

  11. Assimilation of Global Radar Backscatter and Radiometer Brightness Temperature Observations to Improve Soil Moisture and Land Evaporation Estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lievens, H.; Martens, B.; Verhoest, N. E. C.; Hahn, S.; Reichle, R. H.; Miralles, D. G.

    2017-01-01

    Active radar backscatter (s?) observations from the Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT) and passive radiometer brightness temperature (TB) observations from the Soil Moisture Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission are assimilated either individually or jointly into the Global Land Evaporation Amsterdam Model (GLEAM) to improve its simulations of soil moisture and land evaporation. To enable s? and TB assimilation, GLEAM is coupled to the Water Cloud Model and the L-band Microwave Emission from the Biosphere (L-MEB) model. The innovations, i.e. differences between observations and simulations, are mapped onto the model soil moisture states through an Ensemble Kalman Filter. The validation of surface (0-10 cm) soil moisture simulations over the period 2010-2014 against in situ measurements from the International Soil Moisture Network (ISMN) shows that assimilating s? or TB alone improves the average correlation of seasonal anomalies (Ran) from 0.514 to 0.547 and 0.548, respectively. The joint assimilation further improves Ran to 0.559. Associated enhancements in daily evaporative flux simulations by GLEAM are validated based on measurements from 22 FLUXNET stations. Again, the singular assimilation improves Ran from 0.502 to 0.536 and 0.533, respectively for s? and TB, whereas the best performance is observed for the joint assimilation (Ran = 0.546). These results demonstrate the complementary value of assimilating radar backscatter observations together with brightness temperatures for improving estimates of hydrological variables, as their joint assimilation outperforms the assimilation of each observation type separately.

  12. Participatory Action Research Experiences for Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sample McMeeking, L. B.; Weinberg, A. E.

    2013-12-01

    Research experiences for undergraduates (REU) have been shown to be effective in improving undergraduate students' personal/professional development, ability to synthesize knowledge, improvement in research skills, professional advancement, and career choice. Adding to the literature on REU programs, a new conceptual model situating REU within a context of participatory action research (PAR) is presented and compared with data from a PAR-based coastal climate research experience that took place in Summer 2012. The purpose of the interdisciplinary Participatory Action Research Experiences for Undergraduates (PAREU) model is to act as an additional year to traditional, lab-based REU where undergraduate science students, social science experts, and community members collaborate to develop research with the goal of enacting change. The benefits to traditional REU's are well established and include increased content knowledge, better research skills, changes in attitudes, and greater career awareness gained by students. Additional positive outcomes are expected from undergraduate researchers (UR) who participate in PAREU, including the ability to better communicate with non-scientists. With highly politicized aspects of science, such as climate change, this becomes especially important for future scientists. Further, they will be able to articulate the relevance of science research to society, which is an important skill, especially given the funding climate where agencies require broader impacts statements. Making science relevant may also benefit URs who wish to apply their science research. Finally, URs will gain social science research skills by apprenticing in a research project that includes science and social science research components, which enables them to participate in future education and outreach. The model also positively impacts community members by elevating their voices within and outside the community, particularly in areas severely underserved

  13. Improving sustainability in the remediation of contaminated soils by the use of compost and energy valorization by Paulownia fortunei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madejón, Paula; Domínguez, María Teresa; Díaz, Manuel Jesús; Madejón, Engracia

    2016-01-01

    The plantation of fast growing trees in contaminated sites, in combination with the use of organic wastes, could partially solve a dual environmental problem: the disposal of these wastes and the improvement of soil quality in these degraded soils. This study evaluated the effects of two compost on the quantity and quality of Paulownia fortunei biomass and on syngas production by biomass gasification, produced by plants growing on trace elements contaminated soils. Compost increased biomass production to values similar to those produced in non-contaminated soils, due to the improvement in plant nutritional status. Moreover, biomass quality for gasification was increased by compost addition. Trace element accumulation in the biomass was relatively low and not related to biomass production or the gas quality obtained through gasification. Thus, P. fortunei plantations could pose an opportunity to improve the economic balance of the revegetation of contaminated soils, given that other commercial uses such as food or fodder crop production is not recommended in these soils. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Participatory management in today's health care setting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burnham, B.A.

    1987-01-01

    As the health care revolution progresses, so must the management styles of today's leaders. The authors must ask ourselves if we are managing tomorrow's work force or the work force of the past. Participatory management may better meet the needs of today's work force. This paper identifies the reasons participatory management is a more effective management style, the methods used to implement a participatory management program, its benefits (such as higher productivity and more efficient, effective implementation and acceptance of change), and the difficulties experienced

  15. Integrated use of biochar: a tool for improving soil and wheat quality of degraded soil under wheat-maize cropping pattern

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ali, K.; Arif, M.; Jan, M.T.

    2015-01-01

    Wheat quality, nutrient uptake and nutrient use efficiency are significantly influenced by nutrient sources and application rate. To investigate the integrative effect of biochar, farmyard manure (FYM) and nitrogen (organic and inorganic soil amendments) in a wheat-maize cropping system, a two year study was designed to assess the interactive outcome of biochar, FYM and nitrogenous fertilizer on wheat nitrogen (N) parameters and associated soil quality parameters. Three levels of biochar (0, 25 and 50 t ha-1), two levels of FYM (5 and 10 t ha-1) and two levels of nitrogen fertilizer (60 and 120 kg ha-1) were used in the study. Biochar application displayed a significantly increased in wheat leaf, stem, straw and grain N content; grain and total N-uptake and grain protein content by 24, 20, 24, 56, 50, 17 and 20% respectively. Similarly, biochar application significantly increased soil total N (TN) and soil mineral N (SMN) by 63 and 40% respectively in second year. FYM application increased grain, leaf and straw N content by 20, 19.5 and 18% respectively, and increased total N-uptake and grain protein content by 49 and 19% respectively. FYM increased soil TN and SMN by 63 and 32% in both the years of the experiment. Mineral N application increased soil TN by over a half and SMN by a third, and grain protein content increased 16%. In contrast, nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) decreased for all amendments relative to the control. However, biochar treated plots improved NUE by 38% compared to plots without biochar. In conclusion, this field experiment has illustrated the potential of biochar to bring about short-term benefits in wheat and soil quality parameters in wheat-maize cropping systems. However, the long-term benefits remain to be quantified. (author)

  16. SAFETY IMPROVES DRAMATICALLY IN FLUOR HANFORD SOIL AND GROUNDWATER REMEDIATION PROJECT

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    GERBER MS

    2007-01-01

    This paper describes dramatic improvements in the safety record of the Soil and Groundwater Remediation Project (SGRP) at the Hanford Site in southeast Washington state over the past four years. During a period of enormous growth in project work and scope, contractor Fluor Hanford reduced injuries, accidents, and other safety-related incidents and enhanced a safety culture that earned the SGRP Star Status in the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) in 2007. This paper outlines the complex and multi-faceted work of Fluor Hanford's SGRP and details the steps taken by the project's Field Operations and Safety organizations to improve safety. Holding field safety meetings and walkdowns, broadening safety inspections, organizing employee safety councils, intensively flowing down safety requirements to subcontractors, and adopting other methods to achieve remarkable improvement in safety are discussed. The roles of management, labor and subcontractors are detailed. Finally, SGRP's safety improvements are discussed within the context of overall safety enhancements made by Fluor Hanford in the company's 11 years of managing nuclear waste cleanup at the Hanford Site

  17. SAFETY IMPROVES DRAMATICALLY IN FLUOR HANFORD SOIL AND GROUNDWATER REMEDIATION PROJECT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    GERBER MS

    2007-12-05

    This paper describes dramatic improvements in the safety record of the Soil and Groundwater Remediation Project (SGRP) at the Hanford Site in southeast Washington state over the past four years. During a period of enormous growth in project work and scope, contractor Fluor Hanford reduced injuries, accidents, and other safety-related incidents and enhanced a safety culture that earned the SGRP Star Status in the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) in 2007. This paper outlines the complex and multi-faceted work of Fluor Hanford's SGRP and details the steps taken by the project's Field Operations and Safety organizations to improve safety. Holding field safety meetings and walkdowns, broadening safety inspections, organizing employee safety councils, intensively flowing down safety requirements to subcontractors, and adopting other methods to achieve remarkable improvement in safety are discussed. The roles of management, labor and subcontractors are detailed. Finally, SGRP's safety improvements are discussed within the context of overall safety enhancements made by Fluor Hanford in the company's 11 years of managing nuclear waste cleanup at the Hanford Site.

  18. Participatory financing for green growth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Laville, Dorine; Phantharangsi, Maryvonne; Monnoyer-Smith, Laurence; Demeulenaere, Laurence; Lequeux, Typhaine; Cuny, Alicia

    2017-01-01

    As for the French Ministry of the Environment, participatory financing can be an innovating and mobilising tool to finance projects related to the energy and ecological transition, and as such a financing is promoted by the law on energy transition for a green growth, this publication presents this type of financing. It evokes its legal framework, its different forms (loan to companies, loan to individuals, gift, capital investment), its safe legal framework (definition of different types of status). It outlines how it can be a lever for energy and ecological transition even if green projects are difficult to quantify. It evokes the future introduction of a label, and the introduction of legal and regulatory measures to develop the renewable energy sector

  19. Materials in Participatory Design Processes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Nicolai Brodersen

    This dissertation presents three years of academic inquiry into the question of what role materials play in interaction design and participatory design processes. The dissertation aims at developing conceptual tools, based on Deweys pragmatism, for understanding how materials aid design reflection....... It has been developed using a research-through-design approach in which the author has conducted practical design work in order to investigate and experiment with using materials to scaffold design inquiry. The results of the PhD work is submitted as seven separate papers, submitted to esteemed journals...... and conferences within the field of interaction design and HCI. The work is motivated both by the growing interest in materials in interaction design and HCI and the interest in design processes and collaboration within those fields. At the core of the dissertation lies an interest in the many different materials...

  20. SOIL AGROCHEMICAL PROPERTIES IMPROVEMENT IN LONG TERM FIELD EXPERIMENT WITH FERTILIZERS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mihaela Lungu

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Soil fertility is studied in long-term field experiments. Researches are carried out in several agricultural research stations, out of which the following have been chosen for the present paper: Albic Luvisol* at Albota; Haplic Phaeozem at Fundulea; Chromic Luvisol at Şimnic; Calcic Chernozem at Secuieni; and Haplic Chernozem at Podu Iloaiei. Long term fertilization with nitrogen and phosphorus generally improved the soil agrochemical properties. The evolution of organic matter, nitrogen, mobile phosphorus and potassium, and mobile microelements contents were studied, using the standardized method used in the ICPA laboratories. The organic matter and total nitrogen contents didn’t change significantly under the nitrogen and phosphorus long-term fertilization influence. The mobile phosphorus contents have the tendency to grow very significantly with the growth of phosphorus fertilizers. At the same time, slight depletions of these contents are registered as the high nitrogen doses from fertilizers stimulate plant growth and, obviously, nutritive elements absorption. Mobile potassium contents changes very little, with insignificant differences. Significant depletions are registered only with high fertilizers doses, due to the stimulation of the nutritive elements absorption in plants. Microelements contents don’t change almost at all. They are within the normal content limits and no excess or deficiency was registered, in any of the studied stations. For the agricultural practice, economical studies are recommended, about how high fertilizing expenses are covered by the yield growth. Not the least, production quality study in different variants of mineral fertilization could prove interesting.

  1. Utilization of oil palm empty bunches waste as biochar-microbes for improving availibity of soil nutrients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G . I . Ichriani

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available There are about 23% waste oil palm empty fruit bunches (OPEFB of total waste generated from the production of crude palm oil in oil palm plantations. Pyrolysis technology can be used to convert waste into biochar and further can be utilized for the improvement of soil. Biochar-microbes of OPEFB are biochar from OPEFB biomass that enriched with soil microbes. Biochar-microbes is expected to be used for the improvement of the soil and plants. Therefore the purpose of this research was to study the ability of biochar-microbes OPEFB to increase availability of the nutrients in sandy soils. The process of making biochar done by using slow pyrolysis technology by heating 300oC and 400oC for 2 and 3 hours, and with sizes 40 and 80 mesh, as well as indigenous microbial Bulkhorderia nodosa G.52.Rif1 and Trichoderma sp. added. The biochar production and research were conducted in the Department of Forestry Laboratory and in the Department of Agronomy Laboratory, Faculty of Agriculture, Palangka Raya University. In general, the study showed that biochar-microbes could maintain the soil pH value and tends to increase the soil pH, increasing the holding capacity of sandy soil to the elements of P and K as well as increasing the availability of nutrients N, P and K. Furthermore, this study showed that the biochar process by 400oC heating for 3 hours and 40 mesh with microbes or without microbes were the best effect on the improvement of the quality of holding capacity and the nutrients supply in sandy soils.

  2. Improving the Bearing Strength of Sandy Loam Soil Compressed Earth Block Bricks Using Sugercane Bagasse Ash

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramadhan W. Salim

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The need for affordable and sustainable alternative construction materials to cement in developing countries cannot be underemphasized. Compressed Earth Bricks have gained acceptability as an affordable and sustainable construction material. There is however a need to boost its bearing capacity. Previous research show that Sugarcane Bagasse Ash as a soil stabilizer has yielded positive results. However, there is limited research on its effect on the mechanical property of Compressed Earth Brick. This current research investigated the effect of adding 3%, 5%, 8% and 10% Sugarcane Bagasse Ash on the compressive strength of compressed earth brick. The result showed improvement in its compressive strength by 65% with the addition of 10% Sugarcane Bagasse Ash.

  3. Effects of Vinegar Bad and Flyash on the Growth of Sorghum and the Improvement of Saline Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FAN Na

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Based on the sorghum growth and salinity soil improvement, the effects of vinegar bad and flyash on the growth of sorghum and the improvement of saline soils were studied. The experiment was carried out with random block design, in 4 treatment, which were pure vinegar bad(treatment 1, vinegar bad and fly ash 1:1 ratio(treatment 2, vinegar bad and fly ash 2:1 ratio(treatment 3 and control respectively. The results showed that the contents of available nutrient in the four periods of sorghum growth increased firstly and then decreased, and the effect of vinegar bad and flyash treatment was better than that of control. Among them, the ratio 1:1 of vinegar and fly ash had the best effect. The results showed that compared with the control, the soil bulk density of treatment 1~3 was decreased by 19.6%, 28.6% and 11.32%, respectively. The spike length of treatment 1~3 was 6.25%, 9.06%, 3.93% higher than that of the control, respectively. The yield per plant of treatment 1~3 was increased by 10.53%, 13.26% and 8.89%, respectively. In summary, vinegar bad, flyash could improve the physical and chemical properties of saline soil, improve the environment of deep soil for plant growth, thereby increase the yield of sorghum.

  4. Participatory Research and Development for Sustainable Agriculture ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Participatory research and development (PR&D) offers such an inclusive model. ... PR&D concepts and practices for practitioners, researchers, and academic. ... Call for new OWSD Fellowships for Early Career Women Scientists now open.

  5. Participatory Research and Development for Sustainable Agriculture ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    60 Participatory On-Farm Technology Testing: The Suitability of Different Types .... the phases or types of activities that are specifically covered by existing method- ...... from then on becomes responsible for system operation and maintenance.

  6. People, Land and Water: Participatory Development Communication ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    2006-01-01

    Jan 1, 2006 ... ... and offers insights and lessons from research and experience in the field. ... 2000), and Involving the Community: A Guide to Participatory Development ... IDRC is now accepting applications for this year's Trees and People: ...

  7. Participatory design methods in telemedicine research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Clemensen, Jane; Rothmann, Mette Juel; Smith, Anthony C.

    2017-01-01

    Healthcare systems require a paradigm shift in the way healthcare services are delivered to counteract demographic changes in patient populations, expanding technological developments and the increasing complexity of healthcare. Participatory design (PD) is a methodology that promotes the partici...

  8. Participatory Action Research in Health Systems: Empowering ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    2014-12-02

    Dec 2, 2014 ... Home · Resources · Publications ... A new publication, Participatory Action Research in Health Systems: a methods ... organizations, most African countries adopted direct payment for health services as the primary means.

  9. Knowledge Shared: Participatory Evaluation in Development ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Knowledge Shared: Participatory Evaluation in Development Cooperation ... El Salvador, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, Nepal, and St Vincent, the book is a ... Linking research to urban planning at the ICLEI World Congress 2018.

  10. Participatory advocacy: a counter to media imperialism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, M

    1996-01-01

    Western media have a history of defining news worldwide, presenting news from a Western perspective which distorts and denies the truth as perceived from developing countries. Western news coverage of developing countries seems to emphasize countries' fragility, instability, and corruption, leading people to believe that the economic problems of developing countries are due to internal failures. That view is then transferred back to indigenous peoples and communities through major Western news agencies and mass media. Participatory communication is based upon the notion that people have the right to decide how they want themselves and their situations to be portrayed, to decide what information is useful to them and their community, and to be integral players in the communication process. With regard to media imperialism, the author discusses implications for advocacy activities, participatory communication approaches, participatory advocacy, participatory advocacy in South Asia, girl child drama in Nepal, drug abuse television drama in Nepal, and the advocacy challenge.

  11. Improvement of Soil Properties, Growth of Cucumber and Protection against Fusarium Wilt by Piriformospora indica and Two Industrial Organic Wastes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moustafa Hemdan Ahmed MOHARAM

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The current work was focused on characterizing bagasse ash (BA and press mud (PM as soil amendments and to study their effect in combination with the endophytic fungus Piriformospora indica on Fusarium wilt (FW of cucumber caused by Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cucumerinum (Fo. Whereas BA and PM improved almost all physico-chemical properties of the soil evaluated, seed treatment with P. indica had no such effect. In shake culture in potato dextrose broth (PDB medium amended with aqueous extracts of BA and PM, alone or in combination, production mycelial mass of Fo was significantly decreased by PM extract, while production mycelial mass of P. indica was highly improved. The colonization rate of cucumber roots by P. indica as determined by microscopy was highly increased by increasing amounts of BA, PM and BA+PM added to the soil. Seed treatment of cucumber with P. indica before plant cultivation in non-amended soil significantly decreased the disease severity of FW and improved plant growth. When seed treated with P. indica was sown into soil amended with BA, PM or the combination of both, the disease severity was even more reduced than after seed treatment with P. indica alone. In this respect, amendment with PM was more effective than with BA, and the combinations were more effective than the single treatments. Hence, there is a scope to integrate PM and BA as soil amendments in combination with P. indica for eco-friendly FW management, improving soil properties and growth of cucumber plants.

  12. Tackling perinatal loss, a participatory action research approach: research protocol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pastor-Montero, Sonia María; Romero-Sánchez, José Manuel; Paramio-Cuevas, Juan Carlos; Hueso-Montoro, César; Paloma-Castro, Olga; Lillo-Crespo, Manuel; Castro-Yuste, Cristina; Toledano-Losa, Ana Cristina; Carnicer-Fuentes, Concepción; Ortegón-Gallego, José Alejo; Frandsen, Anna J

    2012-11-01

      The aim of this study was to promote changes to improve the care provided to parents who have experienced a perinatal loss through participatory action research.   The birth of a child is a joyful event for most families, however, unfortunately some pregnancies end in loss. Perinatal loss creates a heavy emotional impact not only on parents but also on health professionals, where in most cases there is an evident lack of skills, strategies and resources to cope with these kinds of situations.   Participatory action research is the methodology proposed to achieve the purpose of this study.   Participatory action research consists of five stages: outreach and awareness, induction, interaction, implementation and systematization. The working group will include professionals from the Mother and Child Unit for patients at a tertiary level public hospital in Spain. The duration of the study will be 3 years since the approval of the protocol in January 2011. The qualitative techniques used will include group dynamics such as the SWOT analysis the nominal group technique, focus groups and brainstorming, among others that will be recorded and transcribed, generating reports throughout the evolution of the group sessions and about the consensus reached. Content analysis will be conducted on the field diaries kept by the participants and researchers. This project has been funded by the Andalusian Regional Ministry of Health.   Participatory action research is a methodological strategy that allows changes in clinical practice to conduct a comprehensive transformative action in the care process for perinatal loss. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  13. Conservation agriculture among small scale farmers in semi-arid region of Kenya does improve soil biological quality and soil organic carbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waweru, Geofrey; Okoba, Barrack; Cornelis, Wim

    2016-04-01

    SOC, respectively, but the highest positive effect was realized when all the three principles were applied consecutively. Therefore, CA has the potential to improve biological soil quality among small scale rainfed farmers and thus promote sustainable production.

  14. Beyond clay - using selective extractions to improve predictions of soil carbon content

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasmussen, C.; Berhe, A. A.; Blankinship, J. C.; Crow, S. E.; Druhan, J. L.; Heckman, K. A.; Keiluweit, M.; Lawrence, C. R.; Marin-Spiotta, E.; Plante, A. F.; Schaedel, C.; Schimel, J.; Sierra, C. A.; Thompson, A.; Wagai, R.; Wieder, W. R.

    2016-12-01

    A central component of modern soil carbon (C) models is the use of clay content to scale the relative partitioning of decomposing plant material to respiration and mineral stabilized soil C. However, numerous pedon to plot scale studies indicate that other soil mineral parameters, such as Fe- or Al-oxyhydroxide content and specific surface area, may be more effective than clay alone for predicting soil C content and stabilization. Here we directly address the following question: Are there soil physicochemical parameters that represent mineral C association and soil C content that can replace or be used in conjunction with clay content as scalars in soil C models. We explored the relationship of soil C content to a number of soil physicochemical and physiographic parameters using the National Cooperative Soil Survey database that contains horizon level data for > 62,000 pedons spanning global ecoregions and geographic areas. The data indicated significant variation in the degree of correlation among soil C, clay and Fe-/Al-oxyhydroxides with increasing moisture variability. Specifically, dry, water-limited systems (PET/MAP > 1) presented strong positive correlations between clay and soil C, that decreased significantly to little or no correlation in wet, energy-limited systems (PET/MAP soil C to oxalate extractable Al+Fe increased significantly with increasing moisture availability. This pattern was particularly well expressed for subsurface B horizons. Multivariate analyses indicated similar patterns, with clear climate and ecosystem level variation in the degree of correlation among soil C and soil physicochemical properties. The results indicate a need to modify current soil C models to incorporate additional C partitioning parameters that better account for climate and ecoregion variability in C stabilization mechanisms.

  15. Participatory Design in the Developing World

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Messeter, Jörn; Claassen, Hester; Finnan, Craig

    processes. Arguably, the appropriation of participatory design approaches and methods to developing world settings is an important priority in research cooperation between Nordic and Southern African universities. This work presents issues and opportunities for introducing participatory design in a South...... was explored in a socially challenged suburb in the Cape Flats area of Cape Town. Issues on appropriation of strategies and methods for participation are discussed, and directions for further research in the field are identified....

  16. IMPROVED RISK ASSESSMENT AND REMEDIATION OF SOIL METALS BASED ON BIOAVAILABILITY MEASUREMENTS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heavy metals in soils can comprise risk through plant uptake or soil ingestion. Recent research results and progress in understandings of risks and methods for soil metal remediation will be presented. Beneficial use of composts/bosolids plus limestone to remediate metal killed e...

  17. Production system and participatory identification of breeding objective traits for indigenous goat breeds of Uganda

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Onzima, R.B.; Gizaw, S.; Kugonza, D.R.; Arendonk, van J.A.M.; Kanis, E.

    2018-01-01

    The success of breeding programs in improving indigenous livestock breeds in Uganda has hitherto been limited due to lack of involvement of the key stakeholders. Thus, participatory approaches are being promoted for designing community based improvement programs. The aim of this study was to

  18. Production system and participatory identification of breeding objective traits for indigenous goat breeds of Uganda

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Onzima, R.B.; Gizaw, S.; Kugonza, D.R.; Arendonk, van J.A.M.; Kanis, E.

    2017-01-01

    The success of breeding programs in improving indigenous livestock breeds in Uganda has hitherto been limited due to lack of involvement of the key stakeholders. Thus, participatory approaches are being promoted for designing community based improvement programs. The aim of this study was to

  19. Improving Flood Prediction By the Assimilation of Satellite Soil Moisture in Poorly Monitored Catchments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez-Garreton, C. D.; Ryu, D.; Western, A. W.; Crow, W. T.; Su, C. H.; Robertson, D. E.

    2014-12-01

    Flood prediction in poorly monitored catchments is among the greatest challenges faced by hydrologists. To address this challenge, an increasing number of studies in the last decade have explored methods to integrate various existing observations from ground and satellites. One approach in particular, is the assimilation of satellite soil moisture (SM-DA) into rainfall-runoff models. The rationale is that satellite soil moisture (SSM) can be used to correct model soil water states, enabling more accurate prediction of catchment response to precipitation and thus better streamflow. However, there is still no consensus on the most effective SM-DA scheme and how this might depend on catchment scale, climate characteristics, runoff mechanisms, model and SSM products used, etc. In this work, an operational SM-DA scheme was set up in the poorly monitored, large (>40,000 km2), semi-arid Warrego catchment situated in eastern Australia. We assimilated passive and active SSM products into the probability distributed model (PDM) using an ensemble Kalman filter. We explored factors influencing the SM-DA framework, including relatively new techniques to remove model-observation bias, estimate observation errors and represent model errors. Furthermore, we explored the advantages of accounting for the spatial distribution of forcing and channel routing processes within the catchment by implementing and comparing lumped and semi-distributed model setups. Flood prediction is improved by SM-DA (Figure), with a 30% reduction of the average root-mean-squared difference of the ensemble prediction, a 20% reduction of the false alarm ratio and a 40% increase of the ensemble mean Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency. SM-DA skill does not significantly change with different observation error assumptions, but the skill strongly depends on the observational bias correction technique used, and more importantly, on the performance of the open-loop model before assimilation. Our findings imply that proper

  20. Brief communication: Using averaged soil moisture estimates to improve the performances of a regional-scale landslide early warning system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segoni, Samuele; Rosi, Ascanio; Lagomarsino, Daniela; Fanti, Riccardo; Casagli, Nicola

    2018-03-01

    We communicate the results of a preliminary investigation aimed at improving a state-of-the-art RSLEWS (regional-scale landslide early warning system) based on rainfall thresholds by integrating mean soil moisture values averaged over the territorial units of the system. We tested two approaches. The simplest can be easily applied to improve other RSLEWS: it is based on a soil moisture threshold value under which rainfall thresholds are not used because landslides are not expected to occur. Another approach deeply modifies the original RSLEWS: thresholds based on antecedent rainfall accumulated over long periods are substituted with soil moisture thresholds. A back analysis demonstrated that both approaches consistently reduced false alarms, while the second approach reduced missed alarms as well.

  1. Improving the mining soil quality for a vegetation cover after addition of sewage sludges: inorganic ions and low-molecular-weight organic acids in the soil solution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña, Aránzazu; Mingorance, Mª Dolores; Guzmán-Carrizosa, Ignacio; Fernández-Espinosa, Antonio J

    2015-03-01

    We assessed the effects of applying stabilized sewage sludge (SSL) and composted sewage sludge (CLV), at 5 and 10% to an acid mining soil. Limed soil (NCL) amended or not with SSL and CLV was incubated for 47 days. We studied the cations and organic and inorganic anions in the soil solution by means of ion chromatography. Liming led to big increases in Ca(2+) and SO4(2-) and to significant decreases in K(+), Mg(2+), NH4(+) and NO3(-). Addition of both organic amendments increased some cations (NH4(+), K(+), Mg(2+), Na(+)) and anions (Cl(-), NO3(-) only with CLV and PO4(3-) only with SSL) and provided a greater amount of low-molecular-weight organic acids (LMWOAs) (SSL more than CLV). Incubation led to decreases in all cations, particularly remarkable for Ca(2+) and Mg(2+) in SSL-10. A decrease in NH4(+) was associated with variations in NO2(-) and NO3(-) resulting from nitrification reactions. During incubation the LMWOAs content tended to decrease similarly to the cations, especially in SSL-10. Chemometric tools revealed a clear discrimination between SSL, CLV and NCL. Furthermore, treatment effects depended upon dose, mainly in SSL. Amendment nature and dose affect the quality of a mining soil and improve conditions for plant establishment. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Methodological approach to participatory formulation of agricultural technical assistance plans with territorial approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holmes Rodríguez Espinosa

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The collective identification of needs and shared decision-making in projects’ formulation for agricultural development is a process that requires the identification of participatory methodologies to promote active and reflective engagement of producers. The aim of this study was to evaluate a methodological approach for participatory formulation of technical assistance plan with territorial approach. Matrix analysis for the identification and prioritization of the most limiting technical assistance factors for milk production was performed and alternative solutions were defined, through participatory workshops with farmers. The results show the advantages of a collective reflection with stakeholders and quantitative tools reducing subjectivity in decision-making, improving participation in their own development and identifying acceptable alternatives to farmers and viable to the municipality in order to improve lack of pasture and forage management, implementation of good agricultural practices GAP and rational use of agrochemicals.

  3. Use of composts to improve soil properties and crop productivity under low input agricultural system in West Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ouédraogo, E.; Mando, A.; Zombré, N.P.

    2000-01-01

    Lack of adequate nutrient supply and poor soil structure are the principal constraints to crop production under low input agriculture systems of West Africa. Experiments at two sites (Mediga and Yimtenga) were conducted in Burkina Faso to assess the impact of compost on improving crop production and

  4. A participatory assessment of post-fire management alternatives in eastern Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llovet, Joan

    2015-04-01

    Transformational socio-economic changes during the last decades of the 20th century led to the abandonment of mountainous areas in western Mediterranean countries (Puigdefábregas and Mendizábal, 1998). This process was accelerated in the Ayora Valley (inland Valencia province, E Spain) by a major forest fire in 1979. Restoration and management actions were implemented through the 1990's to promote the recovery of the area affected by this fire. In 2010 these past actions were assessed using an integrated and participatory evaluation protocol (IAPro). The selected actions were shrubland regenerated after the fire (no-action); pine plantation over the shrubland; pine forest regenerated after the fire (no-action); and thinning of densely regenerated pines. The assessment involved the identification and engagement of a comprehensive and representative set of local and regional stakeholders who provided a baseline assessment, identified and prioritized essential indicators, considered data collected against those indicators, and participated in re-assessment of actions after an outranking multi-criteria decision aiding integration (MCDA) conducted by the expert team (Roy and Bertier, 1973). This process facilitated a collaborative integration of biophysical indicators (i.e. carbon sequestration, water and soil conservation, soil quality, biodiversity, fire risk and forest health) and socio-economic indicators (i.e. productive, recreational and touristic, aesthetic, and cultural values, cost of the actions, and impact on family finances). It was completed with activities for exchanging experiences and sharing knowledge with the platform of stakeholders. Stakeholder platform suggested that fire risk was the most important indicator, followed by water conservation and soil conservation. Least important indicators were cost of actions, aesthetic value, and recreational and touristic value. Data collected on each action showed the thinned pine forest action with the lowest

  5. Improvement in engineering properties of soft-soil using cement and lime additives: A case study of southern Vietnam

    Science.gov (United States)

    To-Anh Phan, Vu; Ngoc-Anh Pham, Kha

    2018-04-01

    This paper presents the experimental results of using two additives to improve natural soft soil properties in southern Vietnam (i.g., cement and cement-lime mixture). The specimens were prepared by compacting method. Firstly, the natural soil was mixed with cement or cement-lime to determine the optimum water contents of various additive contents. Then, optimum water content was used to produce samples to test some engineering properties such as unconfined compressive strength, splitting tensile strength, and Young’s modulus. The specimens were tested by various curing duration of 7, 14, and 28 days. Results indicated that using cement additive is suitable for improvement of soft soil in the local area and cement-soil stabilization can be replaced as the subbase layer of the flexible pavement according to current Vietnamese standard. In addition, a higher cement content has a greater compressive strength as well as tensile strength. Besides, the Young’ modulus has significantly increased with a long-term curing age and more cement content. No evidences of increasing in strength and modulus are found with the cement-lime-soil stabilization. Finally, the best-fit power function is established by the relationships between unconfined compressive strength and splitting tensile strength as well unconfined compressive strength and Young’s Modulus, with the coefficient of determination, R2>0.999.

  6. Improved representations of coupled soil-canopy processes in the CABLE land surface model (Subversion revision 3432)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haverd, Vanessa; Cuntz, Matthias; Nieradzik, Lars P.; Harman, Ian N.

    2016-09-01

    CABLE is a global land surface model, which has been used extensively in offline and coupled simulations. While CABLE performs well in comparison with other land surface models, results are impacted by decoupling of transpiration and photosynthesis fluxes under drying soil conditions, often leading to implausibly high water use efficiencies. Here, we present a solution to this problem, ensuring that modelled transpiration is always consistent with modelled photosynthesis, while introducing a parsimonious single-parameter drought response function which is coupled to root water uptake. We further improve CABLE's simulation of coupled soil-canopy processes by introducing an alternative hydrology model with a physically accurate representation of coupled energy and water fluxes at the soil-air interface, including a more realistic formulation of transfer under atmospherically stable conditions within the canopy and in the presence of leaf litter. The effects of these model developments are assessed using data from 18 stations from the global eddy covariance FLUXNET database, selected to span a large climatic range. Marked improvements are demonstrated, with root mean squared errors for monthly latent heat fluxes and water use efficiencies being reduced by 40 %. Results highlight the important roles of deep soil moisture in mediating drought response and litter in dampening soil evaporation.

  7. Treatment of turtle aquaculture effluent by an improved multi-soil-layer system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Ying; Huang, Yu-ting; Ji, Hong-fang; Nie, Xin-jun; Zhang, Zhi-yuan; Ge, Chuan; Luo, An-cheng; Chen, Xin

    2015-02-01

    Concentrated turtle aquaculture effluent poses an environmental threat to water bodies, and therefore needs to be treated prior to disposal. This study was conducted to assess the effect of multi-soil-layer (MSL) systems treating turtle aquaculture effluent with adding different amounts of sludge. Four MSL systems were constructed with dry weight ratios of sludge with 0%, 5%, 10%, and 20% (MSL 1, MSL 2, MSL 3, and MSL 4, respectively). The turtle aquaculture effluent had an average chemical oxygen demand (COD), ammonia nitrogen (NH4(+)-N) and total nitrogen (TN) concentration of 288.4, 213.4, and 252.0 mg/L, respectively. The COD/TN (C/N) ratio was 1.2. The results showed that the four MSL systems could effectively treat the COD, NH4(+)-N, and TN, and MSL 4 showed significantly improved NH4(+)-N removal efficiency, suggesting the potential of sludge addition to improve the turtle aquaculture effluent treatment. The average COD, TN, and NH4(+)-N removal efficiencies of MSL 4 were 70.3%, 66.5%, and 72.7%, respectively. To further interpret the contribution of microorganisms to the removal, the microbial community compositions and diversities of the four MSL systems were measured. Comparisons of the denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) profiles revealed that the amount of nitrifying bacteria and diversity in MSL 4 were higher than those in the other three systems. We concluded that adding 20% of sludge improved the NH4(+)-N removal and stability of the system for nitrification, due to the enrichment of the nitrifying bacteria in MSL 4.

  8. Soil temperature synchronisation improves estimation of daily variation of ecosystem respiration in Sphagnum peatlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Angelo, Benoît; Gogo, Sébastien; Le Moing, Franck; Jégou, Fabrice; Guimbaud, Christophe; Laggoun, Fatima

    2015-04-01

    Ecosystem respiration (ER) is a key process in the global C cycle and thus, plays an important role in the climate regulation. Peatlands contain a third of the world soil C in spite of their relatively low global area (3% of land area). Although these ecosystems represent potentially a significant source of C under global change, they are still not taken into account accordingly in global climatic models. Therefore, ER variations have to be accounted for, especially by estimating its dependence to temperature.s The relationship between ER and temperature often relies only on one soil temperature depth and the latter is generally taken in the first 10 centimetres. Previous studies showed that the temperature dependence of ER depends on the depth at which the temperature is recorded. The depth selection for temperature measurement is thus a predominant issue. A way to deal with this is to analyse the time-delay between ER and temperature. The aim of this work is to assess whether using synchronised data in models leads to a better ER daily variation estimation than using non-synchronised data. ER measurements were undertaken in 2013 in 4 Sphagnum peatlands across France: La Guette (N 47°19'44', E 2°17'04', 154m) in July, Landemarais (N 48°26'30', E -1°10'54', 145m) in August, Frasne (N 46°49'35', E 6°10'20', 836m) in September, and Bernadouze (N 42°48'09', E 1°25'24', 1500m) in October. A closed method chamber was used to measure ER hourly during 72 hours in each of the 4 replicates installed in each site. Average ER ranged from 1.75 μmol m-2 s-1 to 6.13 μmol m-2 s-1. A weather station was used to record meteorological data and soil temperature profiles (5, 10, 20 and 30 cm). Synchronised data were determined for each depth by selecting the time-delay leading to the best correlation between ER and soil temperature. The data were used to simulate ER according to commonly used equations: linear, exponential with Q10, Arrhenius, Lloyd and Taylor. Models

  9. A Multi-Stage Method for Connecting Participatory Sensing and Noise Simulations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mingyuan Hu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Most simulation-based noise maps are important for official noise assessment but lack local noise characteristics. The main reasons for this lack of information are that official noise simulations only provide information about expected noise levels, which is limited by the use of large-scale monitoring of noise sources, and are updated infrequently. With the emergence of smart cities and ubiquitous sensing, the possible improvements enabled by sensing technologies provide the possibility to resolve this problem. This study proposed an integrated methodology to propel participatory sensing from its current random and distributed sampling origins to professional noise simulation. The aims of this study were to effectively organize the participatory noise data, to dynamically refine the granularity of the noise features on road segments (e.g., different portions of a road segment, and then to provide a reasonable spatio-temporal data foundation to support noise simulations, which can be of help to researchers in understanding how participatory sensing can play a role in smart cities. This study first discusses the potential limitations of the current participatory sensing and simulation-based official noise maps. Next, we explain how participatory noise data can contribute to a simulation-based noise map by providing (1 spatial matching of the participatory noise data to the virtual partitions at a more microscopic level of road networks; (2 multi-temporal scale noise estimations at the spatial level of virtual partitions; and (3 dynamic aggregation of virtual partitions by comparing the noise values at the relevant temporal scale to form a dynamic segmentation of each road segment to support multiple spatio-temporal noise simulations. In this case study, we demonstrate how this method could play a significant role in a simulation-based noise map. Together, these results demonstrate the potential benefits of participatory noise data as dynamic

  10. Inoculating chlamydospores of Trichoderma asperellum SM-12F1 changes arsenic availability and enzyme activity in soils and improves water spinach growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Shiming; Zeng, Xibai; Bai, Lingyu; Williams, Paul N; Wang, Yanan; Zhang, Lili; Wu, Cuixia

    2017-05-01

    Arsenic (As)-contaminated agricultural soils threaten crop yields and pose a human health risk. Augmentation of exogenous microorganisms exhibiting plant-growth promoting and As speciation changing shows potential to improve crop growth and change soil As availability. Trichoderma asperellum SM-12F1 exhibiting both traits was developed into chlamydospores to improve its persistence in contaminated soils. After inoculation, As availability and enzyme activity in two types of soils and the growth as well as As uptake of water spinach (Ipomoea aquatic Forsk.) were investigated. The results indicated that inoculation significantly improved water spinach growth in both soils. Inoculating chlamydospores at 5% significantly increased As concentration (139%), bioconcentration factor (150%), and translocation factor (150%) in water spinach grown in Chenzhou (CZ) soils, while no significant change for these in Shimen (SM) soils. Inoculating chlamydospores at 5% caused a significant increase (16%) of available As content in CZ soils, while a significant decrease (13%) in SM soils. Inoculation significantly caused As methylation in both soils, while significant As reduction merely observed in CZ soils. The differential changes in available As contents in both soils were attributed to the soil pH, As fractionations and speciation characteristics. Furthermore, Inoculating chlamydospores at 5% significantly improved the activities of β-glucosidase (155%), chitinase (211%), and phosphatase (108%) in SM soils, while significant decreases in β-glucosidase (81%), phosphatase (54%), aminopeptidase (60%), and catalase (67%) in CZ soils. Bioaugmentation and As availability change were responsible for this result. These observations will be helpful for the application of fungal chlamydospores in the future bioremediation. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  11. Vermicompost Improves Tomato Yield and Quality and the Biochemical Properties of Soils with Different Tomato Planting History in a Greenhouse Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xin-Xin; Zhao, Fengyan; Zhang, Guoxian; Zhang, Yongyong; Yang, Lijuan

    2017-01-01

    A greenhouse pot test was conducted to study the impacts of replacing mineral fertilizer with organic fertilizers for one full growing period on soil fertility, tomato yield and quality using soils with different tomato planting history. Four types of fertilization regimes were compared: (1) conventional fertilizer with urea, (2) chicken manure compost, (3) vermicompost, and (4) no fertilizer. The effects on plant growth, yield and fruit quality and soil properties (including microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen, [Formula: see text]-N, [Formula: see text]-N, soil water-soluble organic carbon, soil pH and electrical conductivity) were investigated in samples collected from the experimental soils at different tomato growth stages. The main results showed that: (1) vermicompost and chicken manure compost more effectively promoted plant growth, including stem diameter and plant height compared with other fertilizer treatments, in all three types of soil; (2) vermicompost improved fruit quality in each type of soil, and increased the sugar/acid ratio, and decreased nitrate concentration in fresh fruit compared with the CK treatment; (3) vermicompost led to greater improvements in fruit yield (74%), vitamin C (47%), and soluble sugar (71%) in soils with no tomato planting history compared with those in soils with long tomato planting history; and (4) vermicompost led to greater improvements in soil quality than chicken manure compost, including higher pH (averaged 7.37 vs. averaged 7.23) and lower soil electrical conductivity (averaged 204.1 vs. averaged 234.6 μS/cm) at the end of experiment in each type of soil. We conclude that vermicompost can be recommended as a fertilizer to improve tomato fruit quality and yield and soil quality, particularly for soils with no tomato planting history.

  12. Soil Moisture Data Assimilation in the NASA Land Information System for Local Modeling Applications and Improved Situational Awareness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Case, Jonathan L.; Blakenship, Clay B.; Zavodsky, Bradley T.

    2014-01-01

    As part of the NASA Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) Early Adopter (EA) program, the NASA Shortterm Prediction Research and Transition (SPoRT) Center has implemented a data assimilation (DA) routine into the NASA Land Information System (LIS) for soil moisture retrievals from the European Space Agency's Soil Moisture Ocean Salinity (SMOS) satellite. The SMAP EA program promotes application-driven research to provide a fundamental understanding of how SMAP data products will be used to improve decision-making at operational agencies. SPoRT has partnered with select NOAA/NWS Weather Forecast Offices (WFOs) that use output from a real-time regional configuration of LIS, without soil moisture DA, to initialize local numerical weather prediction (NWP) models and enhance situational awareness. Improvements to local NWP with the current LIS have been demonstrated; however, a better representation of the land surface through assimilation of SMOS (and eventually SMAP) retrievals is expected to lead to further model improvement, particularly during warm-season months. SPoRT will collaborate with select WFOs to assess the impact of soil moisture DA on operational forecast situations. Assimilation of the legacy SMOS instrument data provides an opportunity to develop expertise in preparation for using SMAP data products shortly after the scheduled launch on 5 November 2014. SMOS contains a passive L-band radiometer that is used to retrieve surface soil moisture at 35-km resolution with an accuracy of 0.04 cu cm cm (exp -3). SMAP will feature a comparable passive L-band instrument in conjunction with a 3-km resolution active radar component of slightly degraded accuracy. A combined radar-radiometer product will offer unprecedented global coverage of soil moisture at high spatial resolution (9 km) for hydrometeorological applications, balancing the resolution and accuracy of the active and passive instruments, respectively. The LIS software framework manages land surface model

  13. Contentious Politics and Participatory Democracy in Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian Wampler

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/2175-7984.2014v13n28p199 Contentious politics helps individuals and groups with limited political voice to place their ideas and interests on the political agenda. Contentious politics were long thought to occur when politically marginalized group had no other means to advance their political agenda. The June 2013 social mobilization in Brazil caught most political observers by surprise, especially given the creation of a large, wide-spread participatory architecture (national conferences, councils, participatory budgeting. The innovative institutions emerging in Brazil created a policy environment in which millions of citizens have regular access to state policymaking bodies. How does the institutionalization of a broader network of participatory institutions make it easier for citizens to engage in contentious politics? In what ways does this institutionalization make it more difficult for some citizens to engage in contentious politics? In what ways has the vast network of participatory institutions been largely irrelevant to how citizens use contentious politics? This article explore how the institutionalization of an extensive participatory democracy system in Brazil alters the incentive structures that encourage citizens to engage in contentious collective action.

  14. Characterizing the Suitability of Selected Indigenous Soil Improving Legumes in a Humid Tropical Environment Using Shoot and Root Attributes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anikwe, MAN.

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available We studied the biomass accumulation, root length, nodulation, and chemical composition of roots and shoot of ten indigenous soil improving legumes in a humid tropical ecosystem with the view to selecting species for soil improvement programmes. Two cultivars of Vigna unguiculata, and one each of Glycine max, Arachis hypogaea, Crotararia ochroleuca, Cajanus cajan, Pueraria phaseoloides, Lablab purpureus, Mucuna pruriens and Vigna subterranea as treatments were planted in 20 kg pots containing soil from an Oxic paleustalf in Nigeria. The pots were arranged in randomized complete block layout with three replications in a greenhouse at IITA Ibadan, Nigeria. Results from the work show that M. pruriens and C. cajan produced the highest quantity of biomass. Root elongation was highest in M. pruriens whereas A. hypogaea produced the most root nodules with native rhizobia. The highest quantity of nodule dry weight was produced by A. hypogaea and P. phaseoloides whereas most of the legumes except G. max and P. phaseoloides had high and statistically comparable N content of between 2.36 and 3.34 mg.kg-1 N. The results show that the legumes have different root and shoot characteristics, which should be taken into consideration when selecting species for soil improvement programmes.

  15. Improved Performance of Connected Foundations for Resilient Energy Transmission Infrastructure in Soft Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Doohyun Kyung

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The connected foundation is an effective structural type of foundation that can improve the sustainability of electrical transmission towers in soft soils to serve as a resilient energy supply system. In this study, the performance of electrical transmission towers reinforced with connected beams was investigated using a series of field load tests. Model transmission tower structures were manufactured and adopted into the tests. Based on the load capacity mobilization and failure mechanism, a criterion to define the load carrying capacity for connected foundation was proposed. It was found that the performance of connected foundation varies with the mechanical property of connection beam. The load capacity and differential settlement increased and decreased, respectively, with increasing connection beam stiffness. Such effect of connection beam was more pronounced as the height of load application point or tower height (zh increases. Based on the load test results, a design model was proposed that can be used to evaluate the sustainable performance and load carrying capacity of connected foundations. Field load tests with prototype transmission tower structure models were conducted to check and confirm the performance of connected foundation and the proposed design method.

  16. Improvement of vitamin B-6 production by gamma radiation in bacterial isolates from soil sample

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trongpanich, Yanee; Anutrakunchai, Chitchanok; Piadang, Nattayana

    2006-09-01

    A vitamin B-6 producing bacterium, Rhizobium sp. 6.1C1 was isolated from soil and produced vitamin B-6 (mainly pyridoxamine) 0.27 mg per liter. Rhizobium sp. 6.1C1 is mesophile bacterium which was not able to grow at over 4 0C. The objective of this study was to improve vitamin B-6 production in high temperature by gamma radiation. The result showed that 677 mutant isolates which were obtained from irradiation dose 0.8 and 1 kGy, were able to grow at 5 0C. Only 4 isolates (08-361, 10-3, 10-94 and 10-98) showed high amount of vitamin B-6 per mg protein. From the results of optimum temperature and initial pH of medium showed high amount of vitamin B-6 per mg protein. From the results of optimum temperature and initial pH of medium showed that isolate 08-361 showed higher amount of vitamin b-6 than wild type. However, this value of vitamin B-6 from this mutant was lower than that when screening. Forms of produced vitamin B-6 from mutant were identified by HPLC. The result showed produced vitamin B-6 were PM and PMP, similar with wild type. Effect of gamma radiation stability of mutant is further study.

  17. The use of coal fines fly ash for the improvement of soils in hydrophobic grounds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Janssen-Mommen, J.P.M.; Bestebroer, S.I.

    1992-01-01

    New NO x reducing combustion techniques result in a different physical and morphological quality of fly ash, which makes the use of fly ash less attractive for the building and road construction industries. Attention is paid to the possibility of using low-NO x fly ash for the improvement of the properties of hydrophobic agricultural land. Such an application also depends on the environmental impacts of the leaching of elements to the ground water and the accumulation of hazardous compounds in crops. A literature study of hydrophobic grounds was carried out. Also attention is paid to the legal aspects. No juridical constraints could be found in the Dutch legislation concerning the use of fly ash from coal powder, although it seems that the use of such fly ash is not in agreement with the tenor of possibly to be applied legislation. However, a small-scale investigation was carried out to gain insight into the environmental impacts. The uptake in lettuce and the leaching of the elements As, B, Mo and Se was studied by means of lysimeters. Hydrophobic soils with 5%, 10% and 15% coal fines fly ash were used. Also an experiment with the use of coal gasification slags was performed

  18. Applicability of participatory approach in a community infrastructure ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The approach used to get the data was through case study using quantitative and qualitative methods. ... It is concluded that participatory approach in this project failed in the ... Key words: Participatory Approach, Project Management ...

  19. Improvement of Water Movement in an Undulating Sandy Soil Prone to Water Repellency

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oostindie, K.; Dekker, L.W.; Wesseling, J.G.; Ritsema, C.J.

    2011-01-01

    The temporal dynamics of water repellency in soils strongly influence water flow. We investigated the variability of soil water content in a slight slope on a sandy fairway exhibiting water-repellent behavior. A time domain reflectometry (TDR) array of 60 probes measured water contents at 3-h

  20. Adoption of Soil Health Improvement Strategies by Australian Farmers: I. Attitudes, Management and Extension Implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, J. McL.; Cattle, S. R.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: There is inconsistency in the design, understanding, implementation and monitoring of soil health programmes. Despite mounting scientific evidence for the credibility of certain soil health indicators, an increase in the reporting of programme benefits, and progress in communicating these benefits, many farmers remain hesitant to…

  1. Does Formative Assessment Improve Student Learning and Performance in Soil Science?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopittke, Peter M.; Wehr, J. Bernhard; Menzies, Neal W.

    2012-01-01

    Soil science students are required to apply knowledge from a range of disciplines to unfamiliar scenarios to solve complex problems. To encourage deep learning (with student performance an indicator of learning), a formative assessment exercise was introduced to a second-year soil science subject. For the formative assessment exercise, students…

  2. Adoption of Soil Health Improvement Strategies by Australian Farmers: II. Impediments and Incentives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, J. McL.; Cattle, S. R.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: Many farmers remain hesitant to implement structured management plans and strategies tailored to address soil health, irrespective of mounting scientific evidence for the credibility of certain soil health indicators, an increase in the reporting of program benefits and progress in communicating these benefits. Hence, the purpose of this…

  3. Illustrated manual on composting for improved soil fertility and enhanced cocoa production

    Science.gov (United States)

    In West and Central Africa, most cocoa farms are old and the soils are highly depleted in major nutrients. Cocoa pod harvest continues to remove nutrients, and this loss of soil fertility is one of the major causes of low cocoa yields and subsequent economic losses. Plant pathogens, including nema...

  4. Use of soft data in a GIS to improve estimation of the volume of contaminated soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hendriks, L.A.M.; Leummens, H.; Stein, A.; Bruijn, P.J. de

    1998-01-01

    In the practice of soil remediation, organoleptic observations such as the smell or the colour of contaminated soil play an important role when determining well-defined volumes of contaminated soil. A geographical information system (GIS) is then used to combine quantitative measurements with such soft data. In this study general procedures concerning how to deal with this type of observation are presented. The procedures were applied to a former gas works site, which was contaminated with cyanide and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in the Netherlands. The volume of contaminated soil was determined. Use of soft data reduced the uncertainty in the volume of contaminated soil 4 to 16%. 16 refs., 4 figs., 5 tabs

  5. Use of soft data in a GIS to improve estimation of the volume of contaminated soil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hendriks, L.A.M.; Leummens, H.; Stein, A.; Bruijn, P.J. de [Agricultural University, Wageningen (Netherlands). Dept. of Soil Science and Geology

    1998-01-01

    In the practice of soil remediation, organoleptic observations such as the smell or the colour of contaminated soil play an important role when determining well-defined volumes of contaminated soil. A geographical information system (GIS) is then used to combine quantitative measurements with such soft data. In this study general procedures concerning how to deal with this type of observation are presented. The procedures were applied to a former gas works site, which was contaminated with cyanide and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in the Netherlands. The volume of contaminated soil was determined. Use of soft data reduced the uncertainty in the volume of contaminated soil 4 to 16%. 16 refs., 4 figs., 5 tabs.

  6. [Adaptability of Helianthus annuus seedlings to crude oil pollution in soil and its improvement measures under salinization stress].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jing-lei; Ci, Hua-cong; He, Xing-dong; Liang, Yu-ting; Zhao, Xuan; Sun, Hui-ting; Xie, Hong-tao

    2015-11-01

    To explore the adaptability of plant under salt stress to crude oil pollution of soil and improvement measures, a pot experiment of Helianthus annuus seedlings was conducted using orthogonal experiment method with crude oil-sodium chloride-desulfurization gypsum and cinder-zeolite-desulfurization gypsum-sawdust. The results showed that, with the increase of soil crude oil concentration, the relative growth rate (RGR) of plant height, RGR of aboveground biomass and root N: P ratios of H. annuus seedlings decreased significantly, while the activity of SOD and CAT increased at first and then decreased significantly. The RGR of plant height and aboveground biomass significantly increased (P pollution of soil could decrease the relative growth rate of H. annuus seedling, and sawdust could reduce the influence of crude oil pollution on plant growth under salt stress.

  7. Inorganic phosphorus fertilizer ameliorates maize growth by reducing metal uptake, improving soil enzyme activity and microbial community structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Wencheng; Wu, Jiahui; Liu, Xiaowen; Chen, Xianbin; Wu, Yingxin; Yu, Shixiao

    2017-09-01

    Recently, several studies have showed that both organic and inorganic fertilizers are effective in immobilizing heavy metals at low cost, in comparison to other remediation strategies for heavy metal-contaminated farmlands. A pot trial was conducted in this study to examine the effects of inorganic P fertilizer and organic fertilizer, in single application or in combination, on growth of maize, heavy metal availabilities, enzyme activities, and microbial community structure in metal-contaminated soils from an electronic waste recycling region. Results showed that biomass of maize shoot and root from the inorganic P fertilizer treatments were respectively 17.8 and 10.0 folds higher than the un-amended treatments (CK), while the biomass in the organic fertilizer treatments was only comparable to the CK. In addition, there were decreases of 85.0% in Cd, 74.3% in Pb, 66.3% in Cu, and 91.9% in Zn concentrations in the roots of maize grown in inorganic P fertilizer amended soil. Consistently, urease and catalase activities in the inorganic P fertilizer amended soil were 3.3 and 2.0 times higher than the CK, whereas no enhancement was observed in the organic fertilizer amended soil. Moreover, microbial community structure was improved by the application of inorganic P fertilizer, but not by organic fertilizer; the beneficial microbial groups such as Kaistobacter and Koribacter were most frequently detected in the inorganic P fertilizer amended soil. The negligible effect from the organic fertilizer might be ascribed to the decreased pH value in soils. The results suggest that the application of inorganic P fertilizer (or in combination with organic fertilizer) might be a promising strategy for the remediation of heavy metals contaminated soils in electronic waste recycling region. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  8. Introduction: The Participatory Turn in Urbanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maroš Krivý

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This issue of Footprint examines the recent participatory turn in urban planning and urban design. It discusses the co-opting of participatory processes by planning departments, the systematic disregard of inequalities, and the empowering of the market resulting from the ‘anti-statism’ present in many participatory schemes.What is the relationship between the institutionalisation of participation and the practices of autonomy, self-organisation, and inclusion? When and how does genuine empowerment of collectives take place? Does the demand for the empowerment of local organisations and communities strengthen the market forces at the expense of central government?This issue attempts to problematise ‘participation’, to call attentions to some of its shortcomings, deficits, and limitations, not in order to necessarily bypass the demand for the democratisation of the urban, but in order to rectify and strengthen it.

  9. Improvement of Hydraulic and Water Quality Renovation Functions by Intermittent Aeration of Soil Treatment Areas in Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David V. Kalen

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available We tested intermittent aeration of the soil treatment area (STA of onsite wastewater treatment systems (OWTS for its ability to restore and maintain STA hydraulic flow and improve the water quality functions of conventional OWTS. Evaluation was conducted on hydraulically-failed conventional OWTS at three state-owned medical group homes in Washington County, RI, USA. Testing was conducted in two phases, with Phase I (before intermittent soil aeration (ISA comprising the first 6 months of the study, and Phase II (during ISA the remaining 7 months. Intermittent soil aeration restored STA hydraulic function in all three systems despite a marked reduction in the STA total infiltrative surface. Soil pore water was collected from 30 and 90 cm below the STA during both phases and analyzed for standard wastewater parameters. Although the STA infiltrative surface was reduced—and the contaminant load per unit of area increased—after installation of the ISA system, no differences were observed between phases in concentration of total N, NO3, total P, or dissolved organic carbon (DOC. Apparent removal rates—which do not account for dilution or differences in infiltrative area—for total N, total P, and DOC remained the same or improved during Phase II relative to the pre-operation phase. Furthermore, intermittent soil aeration enhanced actual removal rates —which do account for dilution and differences in infiltrative area. The effects of ISA on actual removal of contaminants from STE increased with increasing hydraulic load—a counterintuitive phenomenon, but one that has been previously observed in laboratory studies. The results of our study suggest that intermittent soil aeration can restore and maintain hydraulic flow in the STA and enhance carbon and nutrient removal in conventional OWTS.

  10. Mobilizing local innovation capacity through a simulation game in a participatory research project on agricultural innovation in El Brahmi irrigation scheme (Tunisia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolinska, Aleksandra; d'Aquino, Patrick; Imache, Amar; Dionnet, Mathieu; Rougier, Jean-Emmanuel

    2015-04-01

    In the framework of the European Union and African Union cooperative research to increase Food production in irrigated farming systems in Africa (EAU4Food project) we conducted a participatory research on the possible innovative practices to increase production of dairy farms in the irrigation scheme El Brahmi in Tunisia in the face of changing economic, political and environmental conditions. Our aim was to find effective research method to stimulate farmers' participation in the innovation process. Although the capacities of farmers in producing knowledge and in innovating are recognized and the shift from the linear model of technology transfer towards more participatory approaches to innovation is postulated, in which the role of researchers changes from providing solutions towards supporting farmers in finding their own solutions, in practice, the position of farmers in shaping innovation practice and process remains weak. After a series of participatory workshops and in-depth interviews with the actors of the local innovation system we developed and tested a simple open simulation game Laitconomie for farmers. The game proved to be effective in increasing our understanding of the system as the farmers were adding new elements and rules while playing, and in mobilizing farmers' knowledge (including tacit knowledge) in the simulated innovation process. The result reported by the participants was learning how to improve farm management, soil fertility management and cow nutrition practices. Some of the participants used the game as a decision support tool. While our game and its scope were modest and mobilized only two types of players (farmers and extension agent), open simulation proved to be a useful tool to analyze a local innovation system. Designing similar type of tools that would mobilize more diverse players and hence have a larger scope can be imagined.

  11. Microbial inoculants and organic amendment improves the establishment of autochtonous shrub species and microbial activity recovery in a semiarid soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mengual, Carmen; Schoebitz, Mauricio; Azcon, Rosario; Torres, Pilar; Caravaca, Fuensanta; Roldan, Antonio

    2014-05-01

    The re-establishment of autochthonous shrub species is an essential strategy for recovering degraded soils under semiarid Mediterranean conditions. A field assay was carried out to determine the combined effects of the inoculation with native rhizobacteria (B. megaterium, Enterobacter sp, B. thuringiensis and Bacillus sp) and the addition of composted sugar beet (SB) residue on physicochemical soil properties and Lavandula dentata L. establishment. One year after planting, Bacillus sp. and B. megaterium+SB were the most effective treatments for increasing shoot dry biomass (by 5-fold with respect to control) and Enterobacter sp+SB was the most effective treatments for increasing dry root biomass. All the treatments evaluated significantly increased the foliar nutrient content (NPK) compared to control values (except B. thuringiensis+SB). The organic amendment had significantly increased available phosphorus content in rhizosphere soil by 29% respect to the control. Enterobacter sp combined with sugar beet residue improved total N content in soil (by 46% respect to the control) as well as microbiological and biochemical properties. The selection of the most efficient rhizobacteria strains and their combined effect with organic residue seems to be a critical point that drives the effectiveness of using these biotechnological tools for the revegetation and rehabilitation of degraded soils under semiarid conditions.

  12. Application of drum compost and vermicompost to improve soil health, growth, and yield parameters for tomato and cabbage plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goswami, Linee; Nath, Anil; Sutradhar, Sweety; Bhattacharya, Satya Sundar; Kalamdhad, Ajay; Vellingiri, Kowsalya; Kim, Ki-Hyun

    2017-09-15

    Utilization of different types of solid wastes through composting is important for environmental sustainability and restoring soil quality. Although drum composting is an efficient technology, the possibility of heavy metal contamination restricts its large-scale use. In this research, a field experiment was conducted to evaluate the impact of water hyacinth drum compost (DC) and traditional vermicompost (VC) on soil quality and crop growth in an agro-ecosystem cultivated intensively with tomato and cabbage as test crops. A substantial improvement in soil health was observed with respect to nutrient availability, physical stability, and microbial diversity due to the application of drum compost and traditional vermicompost. Moreover, soil organic carbon was enriched through increased humic and fulvic acid carbon. Interestingly, heavy metal contamination was less significant in vermicompost-treated soils than in those receiving the other treatments. The use of VC and DC in combination with recommended chemical fertilization effectively stimulated crop growth, yield, product quality, and storage longevity for both tomato and cabbage. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Reclamation of heavy metals from contaminated soil using organic acid liquid generated from food waste: removal of Cd, Cu, and Zn, and soil fertility improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, Shijin; Li, Yang; Zhou, Tao; Zhao, Youcai

    2017-06-01

    Food waste fermentation generates complicated organic and acidic liquids with low pH. In this work, it was found that an organic acid liquid with pH 3.28 and volatile low-molecular-weight organic acid (VLMWOA) content of 5.2 g/L could be produced from food wastes after 9-day fermentation. When the liquid-to-solid ratio was 50:1, temperature was 40 °C, and contact time was 0.5-1 day, 92.9, 78.8, and 52.2% of the Cd, Cu, and Zn in the contaminated soil could be washed out using the fermented food waste liquid, respectively. The water-soluble, acid-soluble, and partly reducible heavy metal fractions can be removed after 0.5-day contact time, which was more effective than that using commercially available VLMWOAs (29-72% removal), as the former contained microorganisms and adequate amounts of nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorous, and exchangeable Na, K, and Ca) which favored the washing process of heavy metals. It is thus suggested that the organic acid fractions from food waste has a considerable potential for reclaiming contaminated soil while improving soil fertility.

  14. Processes, barriers and facilitators to implementation of a participatory ergonomics program among eldercare workers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Charlotte Diana Nørregaard; Lindberg, Naja Klærke; Ravn, Marie Højbjerg

    2017-01-01

    This study aimed to investigate the processes of a participatory ergonomics program among 594 eldercare workers with emphasis on identified risk factors for low back pain and solutions, and reveal barriers and facilitators for implementation. Sixty-nine per cent of the identified risk factors wer......, workplaces, health and safety professionals, and researchers to improve future participatory ergonomics programs....... physical ergonomic, 24% were organisational and 7% were psychosocial risk factors. Most solutions were organisational (55%), followed by physical (43%) and psychosocial solutions (2%). Internal factors (e.g. team or management) constituted 47% of the barriers and 75% of the facilitators. External factors...

  15. The community-based participatory intervention effect of "HIV-RAAP".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yancey, Elleen M; Mayberry, Robert; Armstrong-Mensah, Elizabeth; Collins, David; Goodin, Lisa; Cureton, Shava; Trammell, Ella H; Yuan, Keming

    2012-07-01

    To design and test HIV-RAAP (HIV/AIDS Risk Reduction Among Heterosexually Active African American Men and Women: A Risk Reduction Prevention Intervention) a coeducational, culture- and gender-sensitive community-based participatory HIV risk reduction intervention. A community-based participatory research process included intervention development and implementation of a 7-session coeducational curriculum conducted over 7 consecutive weeks. The results indicated a significant intervention effect on reducing sexual behavior risk (P=0.02), improving HIV risk knowledge (P=0.006), and increasing sexual partner conversations about HIV risk reduction (P= 0.001). The HIV-RAAP intervention impacts key domains of heterosexual HIV transmission.

  16. Participatory Disease Surveillance in the Detection of Trans ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This paper reports the detection of trans-boundary animal diseases using participatory disease surveillance in Borno State. Participatory epidemiology is an emerging field that is based on the use of participatory techniques for harvesting qualitative epidemiological intelligence contained within community observations, ...

  17. Processes, barriers and facilitators to implementation of a participatory ergonomics program among eldercare workers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasmussen, Charlotte Diana Nørregaard; Lindberg, Naja Klærke; Ravn, Marie Højbjerg; Jørgensen, Marie Birk; Søgaard, Karen; Holtermann, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    This study aimed to investigate the processes of a participatory ergonomics program among 594 eldercare workers with emphasis on identified risk factors for low back pain and solutions, and reveal barriers and facilitators for implementation. Sixty-nine per cent of the identified risk factors were physical ergonomic, 24% were organisational and 7% were psychosocial risk factors. Most solutions were organisational (55%), followed by physical (43%) and psychosocial solutions (2%). Internal factors (e.g. team or management) constituted 47% of the barriers and 75% of the facilitators. External factors (e.g. time, financial resources, collaboration with resident or relatives) constituted 53% of the barriers and 25% of the facilitators. This study revealed the processes and implementation of a participatory ergonomics program among eldercare workers. The findings can be transferred to workers, workplaces, health and safety professionals, and researchers to improve future participatory ergonomics programs. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  18. Teaching ethical-participatory social design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dupret, Katia; Chimirri, Niklas Alexander

    2018-01-01

    , and by fostering ongoing mutual reflection. These workshops are inspired by participatory design, political theory, disability studies and psychological practice research. By drawing on empirical material from a design workshop with Bachelor students and external collaborators including psychologically vulnerable...... stakeholders, we argue for an adaptive framework of analytical-pedagogical inquiry that can be continuously co-designed. In particular, ethical design requires a broad and emergent definition of participation. Ethical design is participatory-democratic co-design, which acknowledges and bridges across...

  19. Scandinavian Participatory Design - Beyond Design, Beyond Scandinavia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zander, Pär-Ola; Georgsen, Marianne; Nyvang, Tom

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents a stream of research that is relevant for development research generally and also in South Asia, but has hitherto remained outside the discourse of mainstream development research. It goes under the name "Participatory design", referring not only generally to participatory...... approaches, of which there are many in development research, but to a specific body of work that stems from Scandinavia. Within the research fields relating to design of ICT systems the Scandinavian countries have a rich history of incorporating disadvantaged groups in societies. This paper argues...

  20. The Quality of Conversations in Participatory Innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Buur, Jacob; Larsen, Henry

    2010-01-01

    about new product and service ideas. Conflict belonged to the 'old days' when participatory design played a part in the struggle between workers and management. Based on the theory of complex responsive processes of relating, we suggest a new way of understanding innovation as the emergence of new......) organizations that embark on participatory activities, and the barriers that prevent them. By analysing improvised scenes and the way the audience reacts, we characterize the quality of conversations that seems to allow new meaning to emerge and thus stimulates innovation. We suggest that we need to develop new...

  1. Assessment of metal and PAH profiles in SUDS soil based on an improved experimental procedure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedoldi, Damien; Chebbo, Ghassan; Pierlot, Daniel; Kovacs, Yves; Gromaire, Marie-Christine

    2017-11-01

    The increasing use of infiltration-based systems for stormwater management questions the soil's ability to act as a long-term filter for runoff contaminants, and brings about operational matters regarding the most effective maintenance practices to enhance contaminant retention in SUDS. This paper reports the vertical extent of metal and PAH contamination in the soil of seven source-control devices in operation for more than 10 years, assessed via a two-step sampling strategy to optimize the representativeness of the contamination profiles. Metal distribution was typically characterized by a significant surface buildup, followed by a decrease in concentrations with increasing depth, usually coming close to the background values. PAH were more heterogeneously distributed with depth, but their accumulation was globally restricted to the upper 10-40 cm. This indicates an interesting potential for pollution interception by the upper horizons of soil, but does not necessarily prevent from downward fluxes, even while measuring low surface contents, as deeper strata may have lesser retention capacities. Specific amendments of the surface soil may help prevent this problem. Surface soil renewal - which would be necessary over 2.5-30 cm in four sites, according to the "strictest" standards for soil remediation - may regenerate the soil's sorption potential, but such a practice could disrupt the interactions with the local ecosystem, so this should be carried out exceptionally and not as a preventive measure. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Evaluation of techniques for the improvement of subgrade soils in flood and rainfall inundation affected areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, A.H.

    2016-01-01

    Highways are amongst the most costly resources contributing directly to the growth of any Country's economy. Subgrade soils as component of highways deteriorate normally from numerous factors resulting into flushing or excessive settlements of embankment involving huge maintenance costs. In this research, an attempt has been made to evaluate suitable technique for stabilization of commonly available subgrade soils of Pakistan based on cost effectiveness and ease in construction. The soils identified as A-3(0) by American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) criteria has been stabilized with conventional additives i.e. cement and bitumen in this research. The optimum content of each additive for stabilization based on their relative effectiveness was used. Trials were also made to economize the cost of stabilization from both conventional additives by controlled replacing of them with waste polythene and polyester fibers. The construction methodology for stabilization using waste fibers was also proposed. Cement was observed to be the most effective stabilizer with respect to strength and durability for A-3(0) soils. Bitumen was found effective but uneconomical for A-3(0) soils. Waste polythene and polyester wastes (organic materials) have potential to economize the cost of stabilization with cement and bitumen for A-3(0) soils. However, long term degradation of these organic materials in soil stabilized mixtures needs further exploration. (author)

  3. Improved retention of imidacloprid (Confidor) in soils by adding vermicompost from spent grape marc.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Bayo, Jesús D; Nogales, Rogelio; Romero, Esperanza

    2007-05-25

    Batch sorption experiments of the insecticide imidacloprid by ten widely different Spanish soils were carried out. The sorption was studied for the active ingredient and its registered formulation Confidor. The temperature effect was studied at 15 degrees C and 25 degrees C. The addition of a vermicompost from spent grape marc (natural and ground), containing 344 g kg(-1) organic carbon, on the sorption of imidacloprid by two selected soils, a sandy loam and a silty clay loam, having organic carbon content of 3.6 g kg(-1) and 9.3 g kg(-1), respectively, was evaluated. Prior to the addition of this vermicompost, desorption isotherms with both selected soils, were also performed. The apparent hysteresis index (AHI) parameter was used to quantify sorption-desorption hysteresis. Sorption coefficients, K(d) and K(f), for the active ingredient and Confidor(R) in the different soils were similar. Sorption decreased with increasing temperature, this fact has special interest in greenhouse systems. A significant correlation (R(2)=0.965; Pcharacteristics of soils could contribute to the retention capacity as well. The spent grape marc vermicompost was an effective sorbent of this insecticide (K(f)=149). The sorption of imidacloprid increased significantly in soils amended with this vermicompost. The most pronounced effect was found in the sandy loam soil with low OC content, where the addition of 5% and 10% of vermicompost increased K(f) values by 8- and 15-fold, respectively. Soil desorption of imidacloprid was slower for the soil with the higher OC and clay content.

  4. Improving ecological risk assessment by including bioavailability into species sensitivity distributions: An example for plants exposed to nickel in soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Semenzin, Elena; Temminghoff, Erwin J.M.; Marcomini, Antonio

    2007-01-01

    The variability of species sensitivity distribution (SSD) due to contaminant bioavailability in soil was explored by using nickel as metal of concern. SSDs of toxicity test results of Avena sativa L. originating from different soils and expressed as total content and available (0.01 M CaCl 2 ) extractable concentration were compared to SSDs for terrestrial plants derived from literature toxicity data. Also the 'free' nickel (Ni 2+ ) concentration was calculated and compared. The results demonstrated that SSDs based on total nickel content highly depend on the experimental conditions set up for toxicity testing (i.e. selected soil and pH value) and thus on metal bioavailability in soil, resulting in an unacceptable uncertainty for ecological risk estimation. The use in SSDs of plant toxicity data expressed as 0.01 M CaCl 2 extractable metal strongly reduced the uncertainty in the SSD curve and thus can improve the ERA procedure remarkably by taking bioavailability into account. - The use of bioavailability toxicity data can improve species sensitivity distribution (SSD) curves and thus ecological risk assessment (ERA)

  5. Improvement of wine terroir management according to biogeochemical cycle of nitrogen in soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Najat, Nassr; Aude, Langenfeld; Mohammed, Benbrahim; Lionel, Ley; Laurent, Deliere; Jean-Pascal, Goutouly; David, Lafond; Marie, Thiollet-Scholtus

    2015-04-01

    Good wine terroir production implies a well-balanced Biogeochemical Cycle of Nitrogen (BCN) at field level i.e. in soil and in plant. Nitrogen is very important for grape quality and soil sustainability. The mineralization of organic nitrogen is the main source of mineral nitrogen for the vine. This mineralization depends mainly on the soil microbial activity. This study is focused on the functional microbial populations implicated in the BCN, in particular nitrifying bacteria. An experimental network with 6 vine sites located in Atlantic coast (Loire valley and Bordeaux) and in North-East (Alsace) of France has been set up since 2012. These vine sites represent a diversity of environmental factors (i.e. soil and climate). The adopted approach is based on the measure of several indicators to assess nitrogen dynamic in soil, i.e. nitrogen mineralization, regarding microbial biomass and activity. Statistical analyses are performed to determine the relationship between biological indicator and nitrogen mineralisation regarding farmer's practices. The variability of the BCN indicators seems to be correlated to the physical and chemical parameters in the soil of the field. For all the sites, the bacterial biomass is correlated to the rate and kinetic of nitrogen in soil, however this bioindicator depend also on others parameters. Moreover, the functional bacterial diversity depends on the soil organic matter content. Differences in the bacterial biomass and kinetic of nitrogen mineralization are observed between the sites with clayey (Loire valley site) and sandy soils (Bordeaux site). In some tested vine systems, effects on bacterial activity and nitrogen dynamic are also observed depending on the farmer's practices: soil tillage, reduction of inputs, i.e. pesticides and fertilizers, and soil cover management between rows. The BCN indicators seem to be strong to assess the dynamics of the nitrogen in various sites underline the functional diversity of the soils. These

  6. Participatory Action Research for Development of Prospective Teachers' Professionality during Their Pedagogical Practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strode, Aina

    2015-01-01

    Implementation of participatory action research during pedagogical practice facilitates sustainable education because its objective is to understand professional practice, enrich the capacity of involved participants and an opportunity to make inquiries for the improvement of quality. In the research of professional practice, subjects explore…

  7. Building Bridging Social Capital in a Divided Society: The Role of Participatory Citizenship Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMurray, Alan; Niens, Ulrike

    2012-01-01

    Participatory citizenship education has been highlighted as a strategy to promote social cohesion in divided societies whereby collaborations with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and inter-school links have been proposed as tools to improve social networks between schools and communities. This article explores the role and meaning of…

  8. Contextualising Learning through the Participatory Construction of an Environmental Education Programme

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Mallen, Isabel; Barraza, Laura; Bodenhorn, Barbara; Ceja-Adame, Maria de la Paz; Reyes-Garcia, Victoria

    2010-01-01

    Strengthening links between school and community is critical for improving people's participation in environmental issues. However, Mexican education programmes are generally unrelated to rural students' life experience and are planned without considering either teachers' or students' opinions. This article describes the participatory construction…

  9. Roles of Participatory Action-oriented Programs in Promoting Safety and Health at Work

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kogi Kazutaka

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Reflecting the current international trends toward proactive risk assessment and control at work with practical procedures, participatory action-oriented approaches are gaining importance in various sectors. The roles of these approaches in promoting the safety and health at work are discussed based on their recent experiences in preventing work-related risks and improving the quality of work life, particularly in small-scale workplaces. The emphasis placed on the primary prevention at the initiative of workers and managers is commonly notable. Participatory steps, built on local good practices, can lead to many workplace improvements when the focus is on locally feasible low-cost options in multiple aspects. The design and use of locally adjusted action toolkits play a key role in facilitating these improvements in each local situation. The effectiveness of participatory approaches relying on these toolkits is demonstrated by their spread to many sectors and by various intervention studies. In the local context, networks of trainers are essential in sustaining the improvement activities. With the adequate support of networks of trainers trained in the use of these toolkits, participatory approaches will continue to be the key factor for proactive risk management in various work settings.

  10. Human Securitability: A Participatory Action Research Study Involving Novice Teachers and Youngsters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kravale-Paulina, Marite; Olehnovica, Eridiana

    2015-01-01

    Civic participation, initiative and interest in current events can bridge the alienation felt towards national and municipal institutions, thereby enabling individuals to improve their quality of life and contribute to all-round sustainable development of their resident state. This paper reports on a participatory action research study into civic…

  11. Application of Aspergillus niger-treated agrowaste residue and Glomus mosseae for improving growth and nutrition of Trifolium repens in a Cd-contaminated soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medina, A; Vassilev, N; Barea, J M; Azcón, R

    2005-04-06

    The microbial transformation of sugar beet (SB) agrowaste with or without rock-phosphate (RP) has utility for the improvement of plant growth in a Cd (5 microg g-1) artificially contaminated soil, particularly when the soil is co-inoculated with arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungus Glomus mosseae isolated from a Cd-polluted area. Under such Cd-polluted conditions, the limited growth, mineral nutrition, symbiotic developments (nodulation and AM-colonization) and soil enzymatic activities were stimulated using SB or SB+RP as soil amendments and G. mosseae as inoculant. G. mosseae enhanced plant establishment in a higher extent in amended soil; it is probably due to the interactive effect increasing the potential fertility of such compounds and its ability for decreasing Cd transfer from soil to plant. The amount of Cd transferred from soil solution to biomass of AM-colonized plants ranged from 0.09 microg Cd g-1 (in SB+RP-amended soil) to 0.6 microg Cd g-1 (in non-amended soil). Nodule formation was more sensitive to Cd than AM-colonization, and both symbioses were stimulated in amended soils. Not only AM-colonization but also amendments were critical for plant growth and nutrition in Cd-polluted soil. The high effectiveness of AM inoculum increasing nutrients and decreasing Cd in amended soil indicated the positive interaction of these treatments in increasing plant tolerance to Cd contamination.

  12. Potential impact on food safety and food security from persistent organic pollutants in top soil improvers on Mediterranean pasture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brambilla, G.; Abate, V.; Battacone, G.; De Filippis, S.P.; Esposito, M.; Esposito, V.; Miniero, R.

    2016-01-01

    The organic carbon of biosolids from civil wastewater treatment plants binds persistent organic pollutants (POPs), such as polychlorodibenzo -dioxins and -furans (PCDD/Fs), dioxin and non-dioxin -like polychlorobiphenyls (DL and NDL-PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS). The use of such biosolids, derived digestates and composts as top soil improvers (TSIs) may transfer POPs into the food chain. We evaluated the potential carry-over of main bioavailable congeners from amended soil-to-milk of extensive farmed sheep. Such estimates were compared with regulatory limits (food security) and human intakes (food safety). The prediction model was based on farming practices, flocks soil intake, POPs toxicokinetics, and dairy products intake in children, of the Mediterranean area. TSI contamination ranged between 0.20–113 ng WHO-TEQ/kg dry matter for PCDD/Fs and DL-PCBs (N = 56), 3.40–616 μg/kg for ∑_6 NDL-PCBs (N = 38), 0.06–17.2 and 0.12–22.3 μg/kg for BDE no. 47 and no. 99, 0.872–89.50 μg/kg for PFOS (N = 27). For a 360 g/head/day soil intake of a sheep with an average milk yield of 2.0 kg at 6.5% of fat percentage, estimated soil quality standards supporting milk safety and security were 0.75 and 4.0 ng WHO-TEQ/kg for PCDD/Fs and DL-PCBs, and 3.75 and 29.2 μg/kg for ∑_6 NDL-PCBs, respectively. The possibility to use low-contaminated TSIs to maximize agriculture benefits and if the case, to progressively mitigate highly contaminated soils is discussed. - Highlights: • Top soil improvers were characterized for selected POPs content, in Italy. • Grazing behaviour makes sheep sensitive to top soil contamination. • Environmental quality standards for grazing areas were modelled • The impact on Mediterranean sheep milk safety/security was evaluated. • Low contaminated TSIs support safe intake and compliance of dairy products.

  13. Potential impact on food safety and food security from persistent organic pollutants in top soil improvers on Mediterranean pasture

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brambilla, G.; Abate, V. [Istituto Superiore di sanità, Veterinary Public Health Dept, Viale Regina Elena 299, 00161 Rome (Italy); Battacone, G. [Università degli Studi di Sassari, Agricultural Science, Viale Italia, 39 07100 Sassari (Italy); De Filippis, S.P. [Istituto Superiore di sanità, Toxicological Chemistry Unit, Viale Regina Elena 299, 00161 Rome (Italy); Esposito, M. [Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale del Mezzogiorno, Via Salute 2, 08055 Portici, (Neaples) (Italy); Esposito, V. [Agenzia Regionale Per la Protezione dell' Ambiente Regione Puglia, Via Anfiteatro 8, 74100 Taranto (Italy); Miniero, R. [Istituto Superiore di sanità, Toxicological Chemistry Unit, Viale Regina Elena 299, 00161 Rome (Italy)

    2016-02-01

    The organic carbon of biosolids from civil wastewater treatment plants binds persistent organic pollutants (POPs), such as polychlorodibenzo -dioxins and -furans (PCDD/Fs), dioxin and non-dioxin -like polychlorobiphenyls (DL and NDL-PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS). The use of such biosolids, derived digestates and composts as top soil improvers (TSIs) may transfer POPs into the food chain. We evaluated the potential carry-over of main bioavailable congeners from amended soil-to-milk of extensive farmed sheep. Such estimates were compared with regulatory limits (food security) and human intakes (food safety). The prediction model was based on farming practices, flocks soil intake, POPs toxicokinetics, and dairy products intake in children, of the Mediterranean area. TSI contamination ranged between 0.20–113 ng WHO-TEQ/kg dry matter for PCDD/Fs and DL-PCBs (N = 56), 3.40–616 μg/kg for ∑{sub 6} NDL-PCBs (N = 38), 0.06–17.2 and 0.12–22.3 μg/kg for BDE no. 47 and no. 99, 0.872–89.50 μg/kg for PFOS (N = 27). For a 360 g/head/day soil intake of a sheep with an average milk yield of 2.0 kg at 6.5% of fat percentage, estimated soil quality standards supporting milk safety and security were 0.75 and 4.0 ng WHO-TEQ/kg for PCDD/Fs and DL-PCBs, and 3.75 and 29.2 μg/kg for ∑{sub 6} NDL-PCBs, respectively. The possibility to use low-contaminated TSIs to maximize agriculture benefits and if the case, to progressively mitigate highly contaminated soils is discussed. - Highlights: • Top soil improvers were characterized for selected POPs content, in Italy. • Grazing behaviour makes sheep sensitive to top soil contamination. • Environmental quality standards for grazing areas were modelled • The impact on Mediterranean sheep milk safety/security was evaluated. • Low contaminated TSIs support safe intake and compliance of dairy products.

  14. Improved ground hydrology calculations for global climate models (GCMs) - Soil water movement and evapotranspiration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abramopoulos, F.; Rosenzweig, C.; Choudhury, B.

    1988-01-01

    A physically based ground hydrology model is presented that includes the processes of transpiration, evaporation from intercepted precipitation and dew, evaporation from bare soil, infiltration, soil water flow, and runoff. Data from the Goddard Institute for Space Studies GCM were used as inputs for off-line tests of the model in four 8 x 10 deg regions, including Brazil, Sahel, Sahara, and India. Soil and vegetation input parameters were caculated as area-weighted means over the 8 x 10 deg gridbox; the resulting hydrological quantities were compared to ground hydrology model calculations performed on the 1 x 1 deg cells which comprise the 8 x 10 deg gridbox. Results show that the compositing procedure worked well except in the Sahel, where low soil water levels and a heterogeneous land surface produce high variability in hydrological quantities; for that region, a resolution better than 8 x 10 deg is needed.

  15. Evaluation and field verification of strength and structural improvement of chemically stabilized subgrade soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-07-01

    Often subgrade soils exhibit properties, particularly strength and/or volume change properties that limit their performance as a support element for pavements. : Typical problems include shrink-swell, settlement, collapse, erosion or simply insuffici...

  16. Converging strategies by farmers and scientists to improve soil fertility and enhance crop production in Benin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Saidou, A.

    2006-01-01

    Keywords: Farmer perception, indigenous knowledge, extensive cassava, earthworm casts, arbuscular mycorrhiza, crop rotation, nutrient uptake, soil fertility, co-research, land tenure.Farmers in the transitional zone of Benin claim that extensive cassava cropping and prior cotton fertiliser enhance

  17. Improvement of Base and Soil Construction Quality by Using Intelligent Compaction Technology : Final Report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-08-01

    Intelligent Compaction (IC) technique is a fast-developing technology for base and soil compaction quality control. Proof-rolling subgrades and bases using IC rollers upon completion of compaction can identify the less stiff spots and significantly i...

  18. Organic farming and cover crops as an alternative to mineral fertilizers to improve soil physical properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez de Cima, Diego; Luik, Anne; Reintam, Endla

    2015-10-01

    For testing how cover crops and different fertilization managements affect the soil physical properties in a plough based tillage system, a five-year crop rotation experiment (field pea, white potato, common barley undersown with red clover, red clover, and winter wheat) was set. The rotation was managed under four different farming systems: two conventional: with and without mineral fertilizers and two organic, both with winter cover crops (later ploughed and used as green manure) and one where cattle manure was added yearly. The measurements conducted were penetration resistance, soil water content, porosity, water permeability, and organic carbon. Yearly variations were linked to the number of tillage operations, and a cumulative effect of soil organic carbon in the soil as a result of the different fertilization amendments, organic or mineral. All the systems showed similar tendencies along the three years of study and differences were only found between the control and the other systems. Mineral fertilizers enhanced the overall physical soil conditions due to the higher yield in the system. In the organic systems, cover crops and cattle manure did not have a significant effect on soil physical properties in comparison with the conventional ones, which were kept bare during the winter period. The extra organic matter boosted the positive effect of crop rotation, but the higher number of tillage operations in both organic systems counteracted this effect to a greater or lesser extent.

  19. Coupling of bioaugmentation and phytoremediation to improve PCBs removal from a transformer oil-contaminated soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salimizadeh, Maryam; Shirvani, Mehran; Shariatmadari, Hossein; Nikaeen, Mahnaz; Leili Mohebi Nozar, Seyedeh

    2018-06-07

    This study was carried out to assess the dissipation of 17 selected polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB i ) congeners in a transformer oil-contaminated soil using bioaugmentation with 2 PCB-degrading bacterial strains, i.e., Pseudomonas spp. S5 and Alcaligenes faecalis, assisted or not by the maize (Zea mays L.) plantation. After 5 and 10 weeks of treatment, the remaining concentrations of the target PCB i congeners in the soil were extracted and measured using GC-MS. Results showed that the bacterial augmentation treatments with Pseudomonas spp. S5 and A. faecalis led to 21.4% and 20.4% reduction in the total concentration of the target PCBs (ΣPCB i ), respectively, compared to non-bioaugmented unplanted control soil. The ΣPCB i decreased by 35.8% in the non-bioaugmented planted soil compared with the control. The greatest degradation of the PCB congeners was observed over a 10-week period in the soil inoculated with Pseudomonas spp. S5 and cultivated with maize. Under this treatment, the ΣPCB i decreased from 357 to 119 ng g -1 (66.7% lower) and from 1091 to 520 ng g -1 (52.3% lower). Overall, the results suggested that the combined application of phytoremediation and bioaugmentation was an effective technique to remove PCBs and remediate transformer oil-contaminated soils.

  20. Improved exposure estimation in soil screening and cleanup criteria for volatile organic chemicals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeVaull, George E

    2017-09-01

    Soil cleanup criteria define acceptable concentrations of organic chemical constituents for exposed humans. These criteria sum the estimated soil exposure over multiple pathways. Assumptions for ingestion, dermal contact, and dust exposure generally presume a chemical persists in surface soils at a constant concentration level for the entire exposure duration. For volatile chemicals, this is an unrealistic assumption. A calculation method is presented for surficial soil criteria that include volatile depletion of chemical for these uptake pathways. The depletion estimates compare favorably with measured concentration profiles and with field measurements of soil concentration. Corresponding volatilization estimates compare favorably with measured data for a wide range of volatile and semivolatile chemicals, including instances with and without the presence of a mixed-chemical residual phase. Selected examples show application of the revised factors in estimating screening levels for benzene in surficial soils. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2017;13:861-869. © 2017 The Authors. Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Society of Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry (SETAC). © 2017 The Authors. Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Society of Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry (SETAC).

  1. A New and Improved Carbon Dioxide Isotope Analyzer for Understanding Soil-Plant-Atmosphere Interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Y. W.; Berman, E. S.; Owano, T. G.; Verfaillie, J. G.; Oikawa, P. Y.; Baldocchi, D. D.; Still, C. J.; Gardner, A.; Baer, D. S.; Rastogi, B.

    2015-12-01

    Stable CO2 isotopes provide information on biogeochemical processes that occur at the soil-plant-atmosphere interface. While δ13C measurement can provide information on the sources of the CO2, be it photosynthesis, natural gas combustion, other fossil fuel sources, landfills or other sources, δ18O, and δ17O are thought to be determined by the hydrological cycling of the CO2. Though researchers have called for analytical tools for CO2 isotope measurements that are reliable and field-deployable, developing such instrument remains a challenge. The carbon dioxide isotope analyzer developed by Los Gatos Research (LGR) uses LGR's patented Off-Axis ICOS (Integrated Cavity Output Spectroscopy) technology and incorporates proprietary internal thermal control for high sensitivity and optimal instrument stability. This new and improved analyzer measures CO2 concentration as well as δ13C, δ18O, and δ17O from CO2 at natural abundance (150-2500 ppm). The laboratory precision is ±200 ppb (1σ) in CO2 at 1 s, with a long-term (2 min) precision of ±20 ppb. The 1-second precision for both δ13C and δ18O is 0.7 ‰, and for δ17O is 1.8 ‰. The long-term (2 min) precision for both δ13C and δ18O is 0.08 ‰, and for δ17O is 0.18 ‰. The instrument has improved precision, stability and user interface over previous LGR CO2 isotope instruments and can be easily programmed for periodic referencing and sampling from different sources when coupled with LGR's multiport inlet unit (MIU). We have deployed two of these instruments at two different field sites, one at Twitchell Island in Sacramento County, CA to monitor the CO2 isotopic fluxes from an alfalfa field from 6/29/2015-7/13/2015, and the other at the Wind River Experimental Forest in Washington to monitor primarily the oxygen isotopes of CO2 within the canopy from 8/4/2015 through mid-November 2015. Methodology, laboratory development and testing and field performance are presented.

  2. Participatory urban transformations in Savamala, Belgrade - capacities and limitations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cvetinović Marija

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper analyses the implications of participatory urban design in Belgrade, namely of the series of recent unsolicited activities that has contributed to setting up a specific micro environment in the neighbourhood of Savamala. Its main aim is to promote bottom-up urban development, surpass current profit-oriented trends, and benefit from sociospatial contradictions as opportunities for creativity and participation. The Savamala neighbourhood is among the most important landmarks in Belgrade. Endowed with rich historical heritage and extraordinary spatial potential, Savamala is now a traffic bottleneck with intense pollution, urban noise and socio-spatial conflicts. In order to set up an engine for urban development, several streams of participatory activities have been launched by NGOs and IOs, such as: online campaigns and networking, informal research activities, pop-up events and instant actions for societal progress and bottom-up economic activities. The Actor-network theory (ANT methodological approach demystifies the circumstances of participation and the role of various actors in building pathways of urban transformations in Savamala, while the Multi-agent system (MAS proposes the framework for tracing their behaviour at the neighbourhood level. A complex post-socialist framework presents a challenge for these participatory activities to provide opportunities for urban transformations, based on social interest rather than on real estate speculations. In the lack of official strategies and institutionalised support, the MAS-ANT method involves estimating whether an economy of social exchange could contribute to improving the quality of life and functionality of urban systems.

  3. Utilization of crops residues as compost and biochar for improving soil physical properties and upland rice productivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Barus

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The abundance of crops waste in the agricultural field can be converted to organic fertilizer throughout the process of composting or pyrolysis to return back into the soil. The study aimed to elucidate the effect of compost and biochar application on the physical properties and productivity of upland rice at Village of Sukaraja Nuban, Batanghari Nuban Sub district, East Lampung Regency in 2015. The amendment treatments were A. control; B. 10 t rice husk biochar/ ha; C. 10 t maize cob biochar/ha; D. 10 t straw compost/ha; E. 10 t stover compost/ha, F. 10 t rice husk biochar/ha + 10 t straw compost/ha; F. 10 t maize cob biochar/ha + 10 t maize stover compost/ha. The treatments were arranged in randomized block design with four replicates. The plot size for each treatment was 10 x 20 m. After incubation for about one month, undisturbed soil samples were taken using copper ring at 10–20 cm depth for laboratory analyzes. Analyses of soil physical properties included bulk density, particle density, total porosity, drainage porosity, and soil water condition. Plant observations conducted at harvest were plant height, number of panicle, number of grain/panicle, and grain weight/plot. Results of the study showed that biochar and compost improved soil physical properties such as bulk density, total porosity, fast drainage pores, water content, and permeability of soil. The combination of rice husk biochar and straw compost gave better effect than single applications on rice production components (numbers of panicle and grains of rice, and gave the highest yield of 4.875 t/ha.

  4. Potential impact on food safety and food security from persistent organic pollutants in top soil improvers on Mediterranean pasture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brambilla, G; Abate, V; Battacone, G; De Filippis, S P; Esposito, M; Esposito, V; Miniero, R

    2016-02-01

    The organic carbon of biosolids from civil wastewater treatment plants binds persistent organic pollutants (POPs), such as polychlorodibenzo -dioxins and -furans (PCDD/Fs), dioxin and non-dioxin -like polychlorobiphenyls (DL and NDL-PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS). The use of such biosolids, derived digestates and composts as top soil improvers (TSIs) may transfer POPs into the food chain. We evaluated the potential carry-over of main bioavailable congeners from amended soil-to-milk of extensive farmed sheep. Such estimates were compared with regulatory limits (food security) and human intakes (food safety). The prediction model was based on farming practices, flocks soil intake, POPs toxicokinetics, and dairy products intake in children, of the Mediterranean area. TSI contamination ranged between 0.20-113 ng WHO-TEQ/kg dry matter for PCDD/Fs and DL-PCBs (N = 56), 3.40-616 μg/kg for ∑6 NDL-PCBs (N = 38), 0.06-17.2 and 0.12-22.3 μg/kg for BDE no. 47 and no. 99, 0.872-89.50 μg/kg for PFOS (N = 27). For a 360 g/head/day soil intake of a sheep with an average milk yield of 2.0 kg at 6.5% of fat percentage, estimated soil quality standards supporting milk safety and security were 0.75 and 4.0 ng WHO-TEQ/kg for PCDD/Fs and DL-PCBs, and 3.75 and 29.2 μg/kg for ∑6 NDL-PCBs, respectively. The possibility to use low-contaminated TSIs to maximize agriculture benefits and if the case, to progressively mitigate highly contaminated soils is discussed.

  5. Improving Landslide Forecasting Using ASCAT-Derived Soil Moisture Data: A Case Study of the Torgiovannetto Landslide in Central Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfgang Wagner

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Predicting the spatial and temporal occurrence of rainfall triggered landslides represents an important scientific and operational issue due to the high threat that they pose to human life and property. This study investigates the relationship between rainfall, soil moisture conditions and landslide movement by using recorded movements of a rock slope located in central Italy, the Torgiovannetto landslide. This landslide is a very large rock slide, threatening county and state roads. Data acquired by a network of extensometers and a meteorological station clearly indicate that the movements of the unstable wedge, first detected in 2003, are still proceeding and the alternate phases of quiescence and reactivation are associated with rainfall patterns. By using a multiple linear regression approach, the opening of the tension cracks (as recorded by the extensometers as a function of rainfall and soil moisture conditions prior the occurrence of rainfall, are predicted for the period 2007–2009. Specifically, soil moisture indicators are obtained through the Soil Water Index, SWI, a product derived by the Advanced SCATterometer (ASCAT on board the MetOp (Meteorological Operational satellite and by an Antecedent Precipitation Index, API. Results indicate that the regression performance (in terms of correlation coefficient, r significantly enhances if an indicator of the soil moisture conditions is included. Specifically, r is equal to 0.40 when only rainfall is used as a predictor variable and increases to r = 0.68 and r = 0.85 if the API and the SWI are used respectively. Therefore, the coarse spatial resolution (25 km of satellite data notwithstanding, the ASCAT SWI is found to be very useful for the prediction of landslide movements on a local scale. These findings, although valid for a specific area, present new opportunities for the effective use of satellite-derived soil moisture estimates to improve landslide forecasting.

  6. Three-dimensional modelling of an embankment built on a soft soil improved with prefabricated vertical drains

    OpenAIRE

    Venda Oliveira, P.J.; Cruz, R.F.P.M.L.; Lemos, L.J.L.; Almeida e Sousa, J.N.V.

    2015-01-01

    This work compares the field measurements of a non-symmetric embankment built on a Portuguese soft soil improved with prefabricated vertical drains (PVDs), with the numerical predictions of a 3D modelling where the PVDs are simulated according to the field flow conditions. The change in the permeability with the void ratio and the effect of the smear zone are also included in the numerical analysis. The numerical predictions are compared with the field data in terms of settlement, horizontal ...

  7. Evaluating Housing Problems through Participatory Rural Appraisal ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Lokoja, a medium sized community in the Middle Belt of Nigeria experienced a massive influx of population in the last twelve years. This study examined housing problems that resulted thereafter. Through a participatory appraisal using group discussion and brainstorming, transect walk and matrix ranking, a sampled ...

  8. Evaluating Housing Problems through Participatory Rural Appraisal ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nekky Umera

    Whether in research, development or policy analysis, in social, forestry, irrigation ... Action, Participatory Rural Appraisal involves interaction between the planners and the ..... Park, Obasanjo Layout, the Kogi People Consumer Shops as well as the confluence .... The institutional arrangements under which a person gains ...

  9. Using Participatory Photo Novels to Teach Marketing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Kallol

    2012-01-01

    Teaching the restless young generation business students of today is not easy. Furthermore, the traditional lecture method has failed miserably to engage the business students and deliver significant learning. The author presents a discussion on the photo novel as an attractive communication medium and the participatory photo novel as an…

  10. Grasping social dynamics of participatory innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sproedt, Henrik; Boer, Laurens

    2011-01-01

    perspective we study how a game that addresses these dynamics can be designed. We describe a case of a game, designed for the Participatory Innovation Conference of 2011 in Sønderborg, Denmark. The game was particularly designed around the themes of conflict and interdependence, captured by the dilemma of co-opetition...

  11. Performing Beauty in Participatory Art and Culture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heinrich, Falk

    This book investigates the notion of beauty in participatory art, an interdisciplinary form that necessitates the audience’s agential participation and that is often seen in interactive art and technology-driven media installations. After considering established theories of beauty, for example...

  12. Constructing participatory journalism as a scholarly object

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Borger, M.; van Hoof, A.M.J.; Meijer, I.C.; Sanders, J.

    2013-01-01

    In this article, we investigate the emergence of ʺparticipatory journalismʺ as a scholarly object in the field of journalism studies. By conducting a genealogical analysis of 119 articles on participatory journalism, published between 1995 and September 2011, we analyze the development of scholarly

  13. Participatory ergonomics applied in installation work

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jong, A.M. de; Vink, P.

    2002-01-01

    This paper evaluates a step-by-step participatory approach to better work, applied in reducing the musculoskeletal workload in installation work. To arrive at a reduction in workload, a steering group led the project through the following steps: Introduction: defining the goal and informing all 7000

  14. Participatory decision-making for sustainable consumption

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Coenen, Frans; Huitema, Dave; Woltjer, Johan

    2009-01-01

    This chapter concerns the impact of public involvement in public decision-making processes as related to household consumption patterns, and the impact on consumer behaviour of active participation.1 The call for participatory decision-making is common in the field of sustainable consumption (Murphy

  15. Participatory dramaturgy in theatre for development

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    pertinent questions on research in TfD. I argue in this paper that the devising process in TfD is an important stage which allows for participatory dramaturgy that is key to transformation. The next two sections of the paper will introduce the key terms; “Theatre for. Development” and “dramaturgy”. These will be followed by a ...

  16. Collective form generation through visual participatory representation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Day, Dennis; Sharma, Nishant; Punekar, Ravi

    2012-01-01

    In order to inspire and inform designers with the users data from participatory research, it may be important to represent data in a visual format that is easily understandable to the designers. For a case study in vehicle design, the paper outlines visual representation of data and the use...

  17. Participatory Exploration of Digitalizing Cultural Content

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rodil, Kasper; Winschiers-Theophilus, Heike; Koch Kapuire, Gereon

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes a joint investigation of a Herero wedding ceremony as a sample of cultural content to be digitalized. We have through participatory exploration scrutinized embodied media bias and representation with Herero elders in Namibia. One finding is that this method has enabled...... the elders to be active agents in the digital portrayal and construction of their culture....

  18. Engaging older people with participatory design

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Iacono, I.; Marti, P.

    2014-01-01

    We present a design case focusing on participatory design (PD) with older people. We experimented with PD techniques to foster engagement with participants in development of a graphical user interface (GUI) for controlling a robotic system in a smart home environment. The tenet of our approach is

  19. Does participatory forest management change household attitudes ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    The study assessed the impact of participatory forest management (PFM) on ... southern Africa failed to evict people and this led to the ... to knowledge generation, social learning, and adaptation ... tools and strong arguments for and against their effect- .... engage in discussions and story–telling to better understand the.

  20. Participatory Development and Reconstruction: a literature review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kyamusugulwa, P.M.

    2013-01-01

    In the past decade researchers and development experts have been preoccupied by participatory development and reconstruction. Despite criticisms of its potential, it has been at the centre of development practices. This review of both published and unpublished literature aims to assess the