Individual Actions (individual + action)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

The Extraordinary Cocatalytic Action of Polymethylaluminoxane (MAO) in the Polymerization of Terminal Olefins by Metallocenes: Chemical Change in the Group 4 Metallocene Dimethyl Derivatives Induced by MAO,

John J. Eisch
Abstract In the polymerization of olefins with Group 4 metallocene dichlorides or dimethyl derivatives as procatalysts the use of polymethylaluminoxane (MAO) as the cocatalyst, especially in extreme excess (102,103 times the metallocene equivalent), has been shown to have an extraordinary accelerating effect on the rate of olefin polymerization, when compared with the cocatalytic action of alkylaluminum halides. In attempts at explaining the greatly superior catalytic activity of MAO in olefin polymerization (the MAO conundrum), hypotheses have generally paralleled the steps involved in the cocatalytic action of RnAlCl3,n, namely the alkylation of Cp2MtCl2, ionization of Cp2Mt(R)Cl into the metallocenium cation, [Cp2Mt,R]+, and anion, [Rn,1AlCl4,n], and subsequent ion-pair separation. In order to understand any differences in catalytic action between such cocatalysts, we have studied the individual action of MAO (100 equiv.) and of MeAlCl2 (1,2 equiv.) on each of the Group 4 metallocene derivatives, Cp2TiCl2, Cp2ZrCl2, Cp2Ti(CH3)2 and Cp2Zr(CH3)2. With MeAlCl2 each of the metallocene derivatives appeared to form the cation, [Cp2Mt,CH3]+, with greater (Ti) or lesser (Zr) ease, because an alkyne such as diphenylacetylene was then found to insert into the Mt,CH3 bond stereoselectively. In striking contrast, treatment of each metallocene with MAO gave two reactions very different from MeAlCl2, namely a steady evolution of methane gas upon mixing and a finding upon hydrolytic workup that the diphenylacetylene present had undergone no insertion into the Mt,CH3 bond but instead had been reductively dimerized completely to (E,E)-1,2,3,4-tetraphenyl-1,3-butadiene. To account for this astonishing difference in chemical behavior between MAO and MeAlCl2 in their cocatalytic activation of Group 4 metallocenes to olefin polymerization, it is necessary to postulate a novel, unique sequence of reaction steps occurring between MAO and the metallocene. If one starts with the metallocene dichloride, then the free TMA present in the MAO would generate the Cp2Mt(CH3)2. This metallocene dimethyl derivative, complexed with an oligomeric MAO unit, would undergo a transfer-epimetallation with added olefin or acetylene to form a metallacyclopropane or metallacyclopropene, respectively. With added diphenylacetylene the resulting 2,3-diphenylmetallacyclopropene would be expected rapidly to insert a second alkyne to form the 2,3,4,5-tetraphenyl-1-metallacyclopentadiene. Simple hydrolysis of the latter intermediate would generate (E,E)-1,2,3,4-tetraphenyl-1,3-butadiene while alternative workup with D2O would give the 1,4-dideuterio derivative of this butadiene. Both such expectations were confirmed by experiment. In the case of added olefin, similar metallacyclopropane and metallacyclopentane intermediates should be produced until ring opening of the latter five-membered ring leads to an open-chain zwitterion, a process having ample precedent in the research of Gerhard Erker. The solution to the MAO conundrum then, namely the extraordinary cocatalytic activity of MAO in olefin polymerization by metallocenes, lies in the unique catalytic activation of the Group 4 metallocene dimethyl derivative, which occurs by transfer-epimetallation of the olefin monomer by the Cp2Mt(CH3)2,MAO complex. The most advantageous Lewis acidic sites in the MAO,oligomeric mixture for such metallocene,MAO complexation are suggested to be terminal Me2Al,O,AlMe, segments of an open-chain oligomer. (© Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, 69451 Weinheim, Germany, 2005) [source]

Context in action: Implications for the study of children and adolescents

Christopher C. Henrich
Action theories acknowledge the reciprocal nature of the relationship between individual action and social context. In this article, the author discusses various ways that the social context and the individual's actions can interact in childhood and adolescence. From an ecological perspective, emphasis is placed on two main issues: Children and adolescents develop within an interactive web of social contexts, and the examination of some contexts without taking into account others can lead to an incomplete and inaccurate accounting of the role of the social environment. Social contexts are frequently dynamic systems that fluctuate over time, and the extent to which children and adolescents can exert effortful control over changes in contexts varies. Implications of the ecological perspective for action-oriented research are discussed. © 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Clin Psychol 62: 1083,1096, 2006. [source]

Institutional Vulnerablity and Opportunity: Immigration and America's "War on Terror"

LAW & SOCIAL INQUIRY, Issue 4 2006
Elizabeth Heger Boyle
New legal realism focuses on the complexity of individual action and the view of law from the "bottom-up." Neoinstitutionalism also suggests that rational-actor models are too simplistic, but spotlights enduring historical effects on individual action and thus tends to view the world from the "top-down." In this article, we seek to marry the two disparate approaches by centering on moments of institutional vulnerability and opportunity when a system can change or be redefined. The terrorist attacks on September 11 provided a unique opportunity for institutional change. Policymakers seized this opportunity to introduce reforms into American immigration law that fundamentally altered how that law is administered. The implications of these legal reforms were to group many migrants into the category of potential "terrorist" and to make it increasingly difficult for any migrant to claim "victim" status. Immigrants responded to these reforms by refraining from public criticism of the United States and by becoming American citizens. We discuss the potential implications of those actions on the institution of citizenship. [source]

Building micro-foundations for the routines, capabilities, and performance links

Peter Abell
Micro-foundations have become an important emerging theme in strategic management. This paper addresses micro-foundations in two related ways. First, we argue that the kind of macro (or ,collectivist') explanation that is presently utilized in the capabilities view in strategic management,which implies a neglect of micro-foundations,is incomplete. There are no mechanisms that work solely on the macro-level, directly connecting routines and capabilities to firm-level outcomes. While routines and capabilities are useful shorthand for complicated patterns of individual action and interaction, ultimately they are best understood at the micro-level. Second, we provide a formal model that shows precisely why macro-explanation is incomplete and which exemplifies how explicit micro-foundations may be built for notions of routines and capabilities and how these impact firm performance. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

The Logic of Expressive Collective Action: When will Individuals ,Nail their Colours to the Mast'?

Philip Jones
Individuals do not act collectively simply because they recognise common interests; collective interests can be defined as collective goods and collective goods are non-excludable. In ,large' groups instrumental individuals have no incentive to act because individual action is imperceptible. But are individuals always this instrumental? If it is a mistake to assume that collective action occurs ,naturally' when common interests are recognised, it is a mistake to ignore awareness of common interests. Individuals derive satisfaction from expressing identity with common interests but when will individuals choose to ,nail their colours to the mast'? [source]

Childhood unintentional injuries: the perceived impact of the environment, lack of supervision and child characteristics

S.-A. Munro
Abstract Background Investigations into the context and causation of injury, including injury risks, are an essential part of the injury prevention knowledge base. Caregiver perceptions of childhood injury risks may assist in the design of safety interventions and influence the way in which an intervention is received within a community. Methods Focus groups and individual interviews were conducted in two low-income neighbourhoods in South Africa to collect information on caregiver perceptions of injury risks. The data were analysed via thematic content analysis. Results The results revealed that injury risks are perceived as multifaceted and as contributing synergistically to an injury event. Parents of children also tended to attribute most risks to the environment instead of individual action. Conclusions Interventions including passive strategies and less activity from the parent may be welcomed in communities. Attention should be given to child injury prevention methods specifically for low-income contexts. [source]

The European Parliament and the Commission Crisis: A New Assertiveness?

GOVERNANCE, Issue 3 2002
David Judge
This article examines two claims made about the "Commission crisis" of 1999: first, that the accountability of the Commission to the European Parliament (EP) was significantly increased; and, second, that the model of parliamentary government in the European Union (EU) was advanced by events in 1999. In analyzing the crisis and its consequences, this article focuses upon the powers of dismissal and appointment, and what these powers reveal about the capacity of the EP both to hold the Commission responsible for its collective and individual actions and to influence its policy agenda. If a parliamentary model is to develop in the EU, the negative parliamentary powers of censure and dismissal have to be balanced by the positive powers of appointment and enhanced executive responsiveness. On both counts,dismissal and appointment,the 1999 "Commission crisis" did not point to the clear and unambiguous dawning of a "genuine European parliamentary democracy." [source]

The Psychological Basis of Historical Explanation: Reenactment, Simulation, and the Fusion of Horizons

Karsten R. Stueber
In this article I will challenge a received orthodoxy in the philosophy of social science by showing that Collingwood was right in insisting that reenactment is epistemically central for historical explanations of individual agency. Situating Collingwood within the context of the debate between simulation theory and what has come to be called "theory theory" in contemporary philosophy of mind and psychology, I will develop two systematic arguments that attempt to show the essential importance of reenactment for our understanding of rational agency. I will furthermore show that Gadamer's influential critique of the reenactment model distinguishes insufficiently between the interpretation of certain types of texts and the explanation of individual actions. In providing an account of individual agency, we are committed to a realistic understanding of our ordinary scheme of action-explanations and have thus to recognize the centrality of reenactment. Nevertheless, Collingwood's emphasis on reenactment is certainly one-sided. I will demonstrate its limitations even for accounting for individual agency, and show how it has to be supplemented by various theoretical considerations, by analyzing the different explanatory strategies that Christopher Browning and Daniel Goldhagen use to explain the behavior of the ordinary men in Reserve Battalion 101 during World War II. [source]

Pathways approaches to homelessness research

David Clapham
Abstract Research on homelessness has focused on either structural forces or individual actions or, where both are considered, has failed to find an effective way of analysing the two sets of factors together. This article looks at one way of doing this through the adoption of a ,pathways' framework. The article reviews existing pathways research on homelessness and argues that existing studies do not analyse the interaction of structural and action elements. A stronger theoretical framework is outlined and emphasis placed on the discourses which shape the nature of services for homeless people and the actions of both staff and homeless people themselves. Understanding of the interaction between these two groups is vital if the nature of homelessness is to be comprehended. A research method is needed which focuses on homelessness discourses and their restructuring and shaping through interaction in order that the aim of a holistic analysis can be achieved. Copyright © 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Risk as a Window to Agency: A Case Study of Three Decorators

Nancy H. Blossom M.A.
ABSTRACT This paper explores the idea of "risk" by examining the role of three women in interior design in the twentieth century (Elsie de Wolfe, 1865,1950; Dorothy Draper, 1888,1969; and Sister Parish, 1929,1994). Women's roles as arbiters of taste were consistent with the social construction of the female gender at the turn of the century; that these roles involved risk,the perception of possible loss or injury,is, for the most part, overlooked by social historians. Our theoretical framework is built upon three keywords from the vocabularies of postmodern social history and women's history: discourse, experience, and agency. These three terms represent the important recognition that the collective understanding of history is not static, but is dependent on the social constructs of the period, as well as (1) how individuals experienced, interpreted, and acted within these constructs and (2) how historians understand and interpret the individual actions in the context of the same constructs. These concepts suggest that individual characters have agency (i.e., power or choice) in framing or reframing an event, based on their unique view of the world. It is through agency that we explore unique qualities of de Wolfe, Draper, and Parish. The stories of de Wolfe, Draper, and Parish demonstrate that risk of traditional values, risk of public persona, and risk of financial security all influenced the ways that they navigated the social and economic circumstances that surrounded them. Each risk, whether imposed on or undertaken by our protagonists, was a seed of change that ultimately affected the social and professional construct of the field of interior design. [source]

A Methodology for Assessing Organizational Core Values*

Johan Van Rekom
abstract The goal of this study is to offer a methodology for empirically assessing the core values of an organization. It uses means,end analysis in order to determine those values that organization members manifest in their daily behaviour, and which are not just espoused ,truisms'. The method is based on the sense members of an organization make of what they do. Sensemaking follows a means,end pattern, through which individual actions converge into central values. The values most central in this means,end structure are the core values that effectively motivate organization members in their job. Our method works in two steps: first, exploratory interviews using the laddering-technique establish the values potentially most central to the organization; then, a follow-up survey assesses the complete pattern of means,end relations among the potential values. Validity tests show that the most central values derived from this survey data are the most important to organization members. These values are also the most stable over time. We make a comparison of this method with traditional value surveys and we discuss its implications for the study of organizational behaviour. [source]

Representations of scientists in Canadian high school and college textbooks

Michiel van Eijck
Abstract This study investigated the representations of a select group of scientists (n,=,10) in a sample of Canadian high school and college textbooks. Drawing on semiotic and cultural-historical activity theoretical frameworks, we conducted two analyses. A coarse-grained, quantitative analysis of the prevalence and structure of these representations exhibited bias toward particular scientists' representations and particular types of texts and inscriptions therein, suggesting a domain-specific rhetorical structure. A fine-grained, qualitative analysis of scientists' representations revealed that high school and college textbooks represent: (a) objects of scientific practice as projected or anticipated independently from human activity; (b) scientists' individual actions aiming at the creation of non-tangible tools and rules by means of observation, modification, or manipulation of given, tangible objects; (c) scientific practice as isolated due to which the simultaneous belonging to different practices hardly determines the goals of scientists' actions; and (d) scientists as part of a small community of mainly other scientists who subsequently determine each other's individual actions. The implications of these outcomes were discussed. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Res Sci Teach 45: 1059,1082, 2008 [source]

Theories in anthropology and ,anthropological theory'

Roy Ellen
What makes a theory ,anthropological' beyond it being a theory that anthropologists use? Assuming a framework that understands anthropology in its broadest sense, this article invites us to remind ourselves what theories are actually supposed to do. Distinguishing theories in terms of the scale of presumption in their claims, it argues for a pyramid of nested levels of explanation. As we move from the base to the tip of the pyramid, so our explanations and interpretation of data must become increasingly simple to accommodate the forms of measurement that each level demands. Given this model, how can evolutionary theories based on individual behaviour geared to immediate survival and reproduction be reconciled with theories that best explain the uncertainties of ,emergent systems', or that consider how individual actions are in turn constrained by the systems of which they are part? It is concluded that anthropology has always acquired its vitality by being critically ,conjunctural', and must be ultimately and necessarily a strategic cross-disciplinary theoretical compromise. Résumé Qu'est-ce qui rend une théorie « anthropologique », en dehors du fait que les anthropologues l'utilisent ? En posant une acception aussi large que possible de l'anthropologie, l'article invite à se rappeler à quoi servent en réalité les théories. En distinguant les théories par le niveau de conjecture de leurs affirmations, l'auteur propose une pyramide de niveaux d'explication imbriqués. En progressant de la base au sommet de la pyramide, les attentes et l'interprétation des données doivent devenir de plus en plus simples, afin de prendre en compte les formes de mesure exigées à chaque niveau. Sur la base de ce modèle, comment les théories évolutionnistes, basées sur des comportements individuels visant la survie et la reproduction immédiates, peuvent-elles être conciliées avec celles qui expliquent, au mieux, les incertitudes des « systèmes émergents » ou qui examinent la façon dont les actions individuelles sont contraintes par les systèmes dans lesquels elles s'inscrivent ? L'auteur conclut que l'anthropologie a toujours acquis sa vitalité par une approche « conjoncturelle » critique et qu'elle doit être en fin de compte, par nécessité, un compromis théorique stratégique transdisciplinaire. [source]

Genesis of solitons arising from individual Flows of the Camassa-Holm hierarchy

Enrique Loubet
The present work offers a detailed account of the large-time development of the velocity profile run by a single "individual" Hamiltonian flow of the Camassa-Holm (CH) hierarchy, the Hamiltonian employed being the reciprocal of any eigenvalue of the underlying spectral problem. In this simpler scenario, I prove some of the conjectures raised by McKean [27]. Notably, I confirm the ultimate shaping into solitons of the cusps that appear, near blowup sites, of any velocity profile emanating from an initial disposition for which breakdown of the wave in finite time is sure to happen. The careful large-time asymptotic analysis is carried from exact expressions describing the velocity in terms of initial data, the integration involving a "Lagrangian" scale and three "theta functions," the rates at which the latter reach their common values at each end of the line characterizing the region where soliton genesis is expected. In fact, the present method also suggests how solitons may arise from initial conditions not leading to breakdown. The full CH flow is nothing but a superposition of such commuting "individual" actions. Therein lies the hope that the present account will pave the way to elucidate soliton formation for more complex flows, in particular for the CH flow itself. © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. [source]

Combining social axioms with values in predicting social behaviours

Michael Harris Bond
Recently, Leung et al. (2002) have identified a pan-cultural set of five dimensions tapping beliefs about the world in which each individual functions. These general axioms may be conceptualized as individual assessments of the social context constraining one's behavioural choices. As such, we hypothesize that these beliefs about the world may be combined with measures of motivation to predict an individual's actions. To test this model, the present research examined the usefulness of these social axioms as predictors of behavioural tendencies in conjunction with four comprehensive dimensions of values (Schwartz, 1992). Hierarchical regression analyses showed that social axioms added moderate predictive power over and above that provided by values to vocational choices, methods of conflict resolution, and coping styles. Specifically, reward for application was related to preference for conventional jobs and accommodation in conflict resolution; religiosity was related to accommodation and to competition in conflict resolution; social cynicism was related negatively to collaboration and to compromise in conflict resolution, and positively to wishful thinking in coping; fate control was related positively to wishful thinking and distancing in coping; and social complexity was related to compromise and to collaboration in conflict resolution, and to problem-solving as a coping strategy. It thus seems as if measures of respondents' beliefs about the external, social world supplement measures of their internal motivations to achieve various goals. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Context in action: Implications for the study of children and adolescents

Christopher C. Henrich
Action theories acknowledge the reciprocal nature of the relationship between individual action and social context. In this article, the author discusses various ways that the social context and the individual's actions can interact in childhood and adolescence. From an ecological perspective, emphasis is placed on two main issues: Children and adolescents develop within an interactive web of social contexts, and the examination of some contexts without taking into account others can lead to an incomplete and inaccurate accounting of the role of the social environment. Social contexts are frequently dynamic systems that fluctuate over time, and the extent to which children and adolescents can exert effortful control over changes in contexts varies. Implications of the ecological perspective for action-oriented research are discussed. © 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Clin Psychol 62: 1083,1096, 2006. [source]

Mortuary Rituals in Japan: The Hegemony of Tradition and the Motivations of Individuals

ETHOS, Issue 3 2006
Yohko Tsuji
Despite rapid social change, traditional mortuary rituals persist in contemporary Japan, and most Japanese ascribe their continuous compliance with tradition to cultural hegemony. In this article, I explore various other motivational forces behind their actions and illustrates how external pressures and individuals' internal motivations are intricately intertwined to generate human behavior. To do so, I consider the social and personal significance of Japanese funerals, examining rituals not only as an embodiment of sociocultural order but also as a culturally prescribed means to legitimize individuals' actions and define their identity. I also demonstrate the multiplicity and fluidity of cultural discourse and the malleability of tradition as well as individuals' active roles in perpetuating and altering mortuary tradition. Primary data were gathered from participant-observation research in Japan since 1988. [funerals, gift exchange, culture and the individual, motivations, identity, Japan] [source]