Public Interest (public + interest)

Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Business, Economics, Finance and Accounting

Selected Abstracts


ADDICTION, Issue 9 2005
First page of article [source]

The "Three-Step Test" and the Wider Public Interest: Towards a More Inclusive Interpretation

Robin Wright
Intellectual property law aims to protect the public interest in two often-contradictory ways: by granting exclusive rights to encourage creativity and by limiting those rights in certain situations for socially beneficial purposes. The Three-Step Test in international intellectual property treaties aims to ensure that limitations and exceptions to intellectual property rights do not inappropriately encroach upon the interests of rights holders. This article examines the interpretation of the Three-Step Test as included in the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights for copyright and patents by two World Trade Organization dispute-resolution panels and by other commentators. It looks at how these interpretations have dealt with the public policy motivations underlying limitations and exceptions to exclusive rights, and considers the ways in which the public policy intentions that underlie decisions by national legislators to adopt the limitations and exceptions to intellectual property rights can be considered in each step of the test. The conclusion reached is that the Three-Step Test contains the potential to allow both aspects of the public interest to be considered as part of an inclusive interpretation. [source]

The Impact of Blue Cross Conversions on Accessibility, Affordability, and the Public Interest

For-profit organization in health care delivery has been a major public policy issue least since at least the 1980s, driven by the growth of for-profit hospital chains and a wave of conversions by nonprofit hospitals. As significant as these events have been, however, they pale in comparison with the potential impact of conversions by Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield plans (which we refer to generically as Blue Cross, abbreviated BC). Because Blue Cross plans are the largest health insurer in almost every state (or substate region where they operate), these conversions could remake the corporate landscape of health care finance. Although BC plans no longer hold the overwhelming market share they enjoyed 50 years ago (when they commanded more than two-thirds of the commercial market; see Blackstone and Fuhr 1998), their share still is considerable. Blue Cross controls at least half the individual market in 33 states and more than a third of the group market in 29 states (Chollet, Kirk, and Chow 2000; McCann 2003). [source]

Interpreting the Public Interest: A Survey of Professional Accountants

Laura Davenport
The accounting profession, like all professions, has a commitment to advance the interests of the general community, as well as those they are contractually bound to serve. Providing services altruistically, at times without compensation, is a salient feature of the public interest ideal. A review of the literature indicates that the profession has abandoned its public interest role so that serving self-interest now appears to have primacy (Bédard 2001;Canning and O'Dwyer 2001;Parker 1994;Saravanamuthu 2004). The aim of this paper is to examine members' interpretation of the public interest ideal and to elicit their perceptions on issues arising from the literature. The results of a survey to members of CPA Australia indicate that members can iterate the formal definition of the public interest, but their application of the public interest in conflict of interest situations is inconsistent with this definition. [source]

Do PPPs in Social Infrastructure Enhance the Public Interest?

Evidence from England's National Health Service
This article outlines and critiques the main fiscal and economic rationales for the Private Finance Initiative , by far the dominant form of public-private partnership in the United Kingdom (UK) , and examines the impact of the policy on the long term financial viability of the National Health Service. It shows that the interest rate on private finance contains a significant element of ,excess return' to investors, and there is no evidence that this ,excess cost' to the public sector is offset by greater efficiency through the contracting process. It concludes that the private financing of public capital investment is highly problematic , and can have a serious impact on the finances and capacity of public authorities. [source]

Stressing the (Other) Three Rs in the Search for Empirically Supported Treatments: Review Procedures, Research Quality, Relevance to Practice and the Public Interest

John R. Weisz
The Society of Clinical Psychology's task forces on psychological intervention developed criteria for evaluating clinical trials, applied those criteria, and generated lists of empirically supported treatments. Building on this strong base, the task force successor, the Committee on Science and Practice, now pursues a three-part agenda: (a) evolution of review and classification procedures with an emphasis on reliability across reviewers, (b) an active role as gadfly in promoting improved research, and (c) a dissemination program (with an evolving web site) to make our process, findings, and data base accessible to practitioners, researchers, policy makers, and the public. We seek to link practitioners and researchers in the shared goal of improving mental health care by encouraging evidence-based practice and training. [source]

Property Rights and Public Interests: A Wyoming Agricultural Lands Study

Katherine Inman
Rocky Mountain states have experienced unprecedented growth as agricultural land is converted to residences. Preservation efforts meet with protest from private landholders claiming public efforts undermine private property rights. This paper explores the degree to which respondents think management of agricultural lands is a public versus a private matter. Data are from a Sublette County, Wyoming, mail survey. Results are relevant to many western counties having public lands and high growth rates. They suggest that landowners, wage earners, college graduates, and those who value the county's rural community lifestyle support public management strategies. Well-established residents and those with economic reasons for living in the county support private management strategies. [source]


Research Summary: The heavy reliance on the use of incarceration in an attempt to address the crime problem has resulted in a dramatic growth in the number of state prisoners over the past 30 years. In recent years, however, a growing concern has developed about the impact that large numbers of offenders released from prison will have on crime rates. Using a state panel data set for 46 states from 1974 to 2002, this study demonstrates that although prison population growth seems to be associated with statistically significant decreases in crime rates, increases in the number of prisoners released from prison seem to be significantly associated with increases in crime. Because we control for changes in prison population levels, we attribute the apparent positive influences on crime that seem to follow prison releases to the criminogenic effects of prison. Policy Implications: Policy makers should continue to serve the public interest by carefully considering policies that are designed to reduce incarceration rates and thus assuage the criminogenic effects of prison. These policies may include changes in sentencing, changes in probation and/or parole practices, or better funding of reentry services prerelease and postrelease. [source]

Making the Monkey: How the Togean Macaque Went from "New Form" to "Endemic Species" in Indonesians' Conservation Biology

Celia Lowe
Indonesian scientists inhabit a postcolonial world where they are both elite (within the nation) and subaltern (within transnational science) at precisely the same moments. A study of science that is neither "ethno" nor "Euro" requires a postcolonial refiguration not only of how science's matter is made but of where and by whom. In the 1990s, the Togean macaque (Macaca togeanus) was proposed as a new species endemic to the Togean Islands, the proposed site of a new conservation area in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. In the scientific production of biodiverse nature, Indonesian primatologists identified the monkey first as a "new form," then as a "dubious name," and subsequently, as an "endemic species." Throughout these acts of making, unmaking, and remaking the monkey, its unique and endemic status was important for developing Indonesian conservation biology, attracting foreign donors, and enlisting government and public interest in Togean Island nature, even as forms of nature important to Togean peoples were overwritten in this process. [source]


Chris Daykin
Although apparently anti-competitive, the organised professions are deemed to be in the public interest because they ensure a supply of expertise within an ethical framework. Since they rely on the concept of a fiduciary relationship between the professional and the client, any failure of trust can undermine the structure. The paper explores the basis for trust, why trust may have failed, and how it might be restored. [source]

The Public Interest in Converging Communications

Caroline Thomson
The convergence of broadcasting, telecommunications and computing raises the question of whether the converged markets will continue to meet the public interest. That interest is in seeing the full potential benefits of convergence , including benefits to the economy, to consumers and to society. Neither the marketplace, nor external regulation of the marketplace, will online deliver those benefits to the fullest possible extent. The BBC's role is more important than ever, in helping to ensure that the powers of digital technology are harnessed for the benefit of all. [source]

Bog Iron Ores and their Potential Role in Arsenic Dynamics: An Overview and a "Paleo Example"

A. Banning
Abstract Bog iron ores (BIOs), i.e. terrestrial accumulations of iron (Fe) minerals forming within the zone of groundwater oscillation, have been described in several regions in Germany and other countries. Since BIOs are composed of a variety of Fe minerals, primarily amorphous Fe hydroxides, they are likely to have an influence on the arsenic (As) dynamics of an area, as these minerals represent important natural As sources and sinks. In this study, mineralogical research results (XRD, microscopy) of altered BIOs of Tertiary age ("paleo" BIOs or PBIOs), occurring within Cretaceous sands in an area of North Rhine-Westphalia, are briefly presented. Genesis and mineralogical evolution of the categorized five different types of PBIOs, along with hydrogeochemical data from the literature, are discussed and compared to studies describing Holocene BIOs from other areas. In doing so, striking similarities (depositional environment, substratum, Fe source and its transport, geochemical evolution, and mineralogy) became evident. Differences in mineralogical and chemical composition can be attributed to the longer period of oxidation that the PBIOs have undergone (Fe hydroxide "aging"). This process is still ongoing (most of the groundwaters in the area plot in the goethite stability field) and leads to a higher stability of the Fe phases and thus, a stronger As retention. The known impact of the PBIOs on the As budget of the study area (they represent the source for elevated As concentrations in soils) can be transferred to more recent environments fostering BIO formation. These are likely to be even more important As sinks , and sources , as they contain higher Fe concentrations, higher shares of potentially mobile As and highly variable redox conditions which might lead to an As output from the BIOs into groundwater, soils and plants. Therefore, BIOs and their potential role in As behaviour are not only of scientific, but also of public interest. [source]

Model policies for land use and the environment: towards a critical typology?

D. Peel
Abstract This article considers contemporary debates in Scotland that are concerned with the design and implementation of land use development plan ,policies that work'. The interest in developing a resource bank of model policy texts is illustrative of the wider agenda to modernize the public sector and to secure efficiency gains in public policy making. On the one hand, this is presented as strengthening policy makers' ability to achieve stated policy outcomes, and to enforce particular policy objectives in the public interest. On the other hand, it is argued that a more uniform and consistent policy context across Scotland would offer a more certain operating environment for developers and users of the planning service. The discussion considers the diversity of land use planning topics identified as potentially appropriate for formulation as a model policy, and proposes a typology for critically interrogating their suitability in practice. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment. [source]

Politics, industry and the regulation of industrial greenhouse-gas emissions in the UK and Germany

Ian Bailey
This paper assesses the impact of ,new' environmental policy instruments (NEPIs), such as eco-taxes, tradable permits and environmental agreements, on the politics of regulating industrial greenhouse-gas emissions. Intense academic debate surrounds the extent to which environmental policy is driven by the public interest, public choices between actor and stakeholder interests, or embedded institutional traditions. However, the effects on environmental politics of the recent shift from direct regulation to NEPIs remain seriously under-researched. Surveys and interviews with industry and policy-makers on the implementation of United Kingdom and German climate policy indicate that, although economic pressures do influence the design of policy instruments, public choice is far from dominant; nor are industry reactions to particular NEPIs uniform between countries. This suggests that national institutional traditions are far more influential in informing policy choices and industry reactions to policy innovations than is often acknowledged. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley &,Sons, Ltd and ERP,Environment. [source]

The implementation of international nature conservation agreements in Europe: the case of the Netherlands

Graham Bennett
Nature conservation policy in European countries is increasingly determined by the requirements of a wide range of international agreements. The most important are two EU directives (the Birds Directive and the Habitats Directive) and four conventions (the Ramsar Convention, the Bern Convention, the Bonn Convention and the UN Convention on Biological Diversity). The main foci of these instruments are habitats and species that are of international importance or require international cooperation to secure their effective conservation. Despite the importance of these habitats and species, implementation of the instruments has been uneven. The Netherlands provides a interesting example of implementation issues. The legislation necessary to enable the government to legally designate areas that have to be protected under the Birds Directive was only adopted in 1998, 17 years after the deadline fixed by the directive. This legislation has enabled the government to nominate areas for designation under the Birds and Habitats Directive. However, not all the sites that fall under the criteria of the Directives have been included in the list, and the legislation does not include the required provision concerning compensation for areas that are protected under the Habitats Directive and then damaged by activities that are authorized in the public interest. In the case of the Ramsar Convention, the government is planning to increase the number of designated sites, but the total number of sites will still represent inadequately the types of wetland of international importance that are found in the Netherlands. Despite this uneven implementation, the instruments , particularly the EU Directives , are having far-reaching effects on nature conservation in Europe. The most important consequences are that ecological considerations are the sole and absolute criteria for determining whether a site should be protected under the EU Directives and that many areas that until now only enjoyed limited protection under the spatial planning system now have to be legally protected from virtually all forms of damage. However, in practice many development plans take only limited account of the biodiversity conservation requirements implied by international conventions. Copyright © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. and ERP Environment [source]

A Competitive European Agriculture Designed for the Citizens , Romania's Perspective Une agriculture européenne compétitive au service des citoyens : La perspective de la Roumanie Eine an die Bedürfnisse der Bürger angepasste, wettbewerbsfähige Europäische Landwirtschaft , die Perspektive Rumäniens

EUROCHOICES, Issue 3 2008
Dacian Ciolo
Summary A Competitive European Agriculture Designed for the Citizens , Romania's Perspective In the coming months and years the European Union has to make fundamental choices for the future of agriculture, food, landscape and quality of life within its whole territory. These choices have now to be made for 27 Member States, which together give a new configuration to the Community. Poland and Romania together now represent nearly half of the total active population involved in EU agriculture. European agriculture has to be multifunctional, competitive not only for the market but also for citizens, as an economic activity that uses and manages renewable resources of public interest. Higher competitiveness inevitably leads to restructuring and modernisation of the agro-food sector in the New Member States. This must be achieved gradually to avoid a negative social impact, through a rural development policy supporting job creation outside agriculture. Romanian agriculture employs about 30 per cent of the country's active population and half of the country's population live in rural areas. Romania, therefore, aims to preserve a substantial CAP budget to promote investment in agriculture and quality of life in rural areas. It is in the interest of the whole EU to ensure not just proper use of the productive potential of Romanian agriculture but also economic development of the Romanian countryside. Au cours des prochains mois et des prochaines années, l'Union européenne doit faire des choix fondamentaux quant à l'avenir de l'agriculture, de l'alimentation et de la qualité de vie sur l'ensemble de son territoire. Ces choix relèvent actuellement de 27 état membres qui, ensemble, donnent à la communauté une nouvelle configuration. Actuellement, la Pologne et la Roumanie représentent à elles deux pratiquement la moitié de la population agricole de l'Union européenne. L'agriculture européenne doit être multifonctionnelle et compétitive, pas seulement pour les marchés mais aussi pour les citoyens, en tant qu'activitééconomique qui utilise et gère des ressources renouvelables d'intérêt public. La hausse de la compétitivité entraînera inévitablement une restructuration et une modernisation du secteur agro-alimentaire dans les nouveaux états membres. Ce processus doit être progressif pour éviter des conséquences sociales négatives, et il doit s'accompagner d'une politique de développement rural pour promouvoir la création d'emplois hors du secteur agricole. L'agriculture roumaine emploie environ 30 pour cent de la population active nationale et la moitié de la population du pays vit dans des zones rurales. La Roumanie compte donc utiliser une grande partie du budget de la PAC pour la promotion des investissements dans le secteur agricole et l'amélioration de la qualité de vie dans les zones rurales. Il est dans l'intérêt de l'ensemble de l'Union européenne de s'assurer non seulement que le potentiel productif agricole de la Roumanie est correctement utilisé mais également que la campagne roumaine se développe économiquement. In den kommenden Monaten und Jahren wird die Europäische Union grundlegende Entscheidungen im Hinblick auf Landwirtschaft, Lebensmittel, Landschaftsbild und Lebensqualität zu treffen haben, die sich auf ihr gesamtes Gebiet auswirken werden. Diese Entscheidungen betreffen nun alle 27 Mitgliedsstaaten, die der Gemeinschaft ein neues Gesicht verleihen. Mittlerweile stellen Polen und Rumänien zusammen etwa die Hälfte der aktiv in der Landwirtschaft der EU beschäftigten Bevölkerung. Die europäische Landwirtschaft muss multifunktional und nicht nur mit Blick auf den Markt wettbewerbsfähig sein, sondern auch mit Blick auf ihre Bürger, als ein Wirtschaftszweig, der erneuerbare Ressourcen verwendet und verwaltet, für die ein öffentliches Interesse besteht. Eine höhere Wettbewerbsfähigkeit führt unweigerlich zur Umstrukturierung und Modernisierung des Agro-Food-Sektors in den neuen Mitgliedsstaaten. Zur Vermeidung negativer Auswirkungen auf die Gesellschaft muss dies schrittweise durch eine Politik zur Entwicklung des ländlichen Raums erfolgen, die Arbeitsplätze außerhalb der Landwirtschaft fördert. In Rumänien sind 30 Prozent der Erwerbstätigen in der Landwirtschaft tätig, und die Hälfte der Bevölkerung lebt im ländlichen Raum. Daher ist Rumänien daran gelegen, weiterhin einen hinreichend großen Haushalt für die GAP zu erhalten, um Investitionen in die Landwirtschaft und die Lebensqualität im ländlichen Raum zu fördern. Es ist im Interesse aller EU-Länder, nicht nur die Ausschöpfung des produktiven Potenzials der rumänischen Landwirtschaft, sondern ebenfalls die wirtschaftliche Entwicklung des ländlichen Raums in Rumänien sicherzustellen. [source]

Does Higher Education Matter?

Lessons from a Comparative Graduate Survey
Renewed public interest in the relationships between higher education and the world of work and a deficient data base contributed to the decision to undertake a major comparative study on graduate employment and work. In the framework of the CHEERS study, supported by the European Commission's TSER programme, some 40,000 graduates of the academic year 1994/95 from 11 European countries and Japan were surveyed about four years later. The study paid attention to the transition to employment, the employment situation during the first four years after graduation, the links between competences acquired and work tasks, as well as the professional impact of values and orientations. Altogether, the findings indicate major North-South differences of graduate employment in Europe, but less clear findings as far as work assignments and retrospective views of higher education are concerned. They show on average a more favourable employment and work situation than the public debates suggest, few signs of European convergence, for example with respect to preference for generalists or professionals, and a high weight of intrinsic values. [source]

Still in Deficit: Rights, Regulation, and Democracy in the EU1

Richard Bellamy
Recently two groups of theorists have argued neither deficit need prove problematic. The first group adopts a rights-based view of democracy and claims that a European consensus on rights, as represented by the Charter of Fundamental European Rights, can offer the basis of citizen allegiance to EU wide democracy, thereby overcoming the demos deficit. The second group adopts a public-interest view of democracy and argues that so long as delegated authorities enact policies that are ,for' the people, then the absence of institutional forms that facilitate democracy ,by' the people are likewise unnecessary,indeed, in certain areas they may be positively harmful. This article argues that both views are normatively and empirically flawed. This is because there is no consensus on rights or the public interest apart from the majority view of a demos secured through parliamentary institutions. To the extent that these remain absent at the EU level, a democratic deficit continues to exist. [source]

Global Family Concerns and the Role of Family Life Education: An Ecosystemic Analysis

Carol A. Darling
We surveyed colleagues from 4 international professional organizations involved with families in order to examine global family concerns and the role of family life education from an ecosystemic perspective. Our sample represented 6 continents and 50 countries. Survey results indicated that family education and related coursework were available in all continents along with considerable public interest in family education. International public concern about family issues was related to population characteristics, values related to parenting and childrearing, interest in family and health legislation/regulations, and public interest in family, parent, and marriage education. [source]

Digital imaging and public engagement in palaeontology

GEOLOGY TODAY, Issue 4 2009
Karl T. Bates
Public engagement and the promotion of science to a wider non-academic audience form an integral role of the professional scientist in the twenty-first century. The high level of public interest in palaeontology means that the Earth's prehistoric past can provide an important medium through which to communicate information concerning contemporary scientific issues. Here we explain how modern computer techniques can be used to enhance public understanding of complex palaeontological issues. [source]

Reform in a Cold Climate: Change in US Campaign Finance Law

Dean McSweeney
The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) of 2002 was the first major change in US federal campaign finance law in a quarter of a century. Many attempts at reform had failed in that period. Few members of Congress were enthusiasts for reform, the two parties and two chambers had conflicting interests to protect, successive presidents did not promote the issue and public pressure for reform was weak. When reform was achieved in 2002, many of these formidable obstacles remained in place. This paper draws on the literature of public interest reform and policy innovation to attribute the change to a policy entrepreneur whose resources had undergone a sharp increase, the neutralization of opposition, the impact of an event (the bankruptcy of the Enron Corporation) and membership turnover in Congress. The substantial support for the bill in Congress from Democrats, the party with most to lose from reform, is attributed to the inescapability of past commitments. [source]

The ethics of evidence-based patient choice

Michael Parker BEd PhD
In this paper I analyse the ethical implications of the concept of ,evidence-based patient choice' in the light of criticism of the ,individualism' of patient-centred medicine. I argue that individualism in the sense used by the critics of patient centred medicine is not an inevitable consequence of an emphasis on patient choice and that a concern with the promotion of individual choices is not incompatible with ,communitarian' values. Indeed, I argue that any ethical approach to decision-making in health-care must be capable of taking seriously both the moral status of the individual (and of his or her choices) and the moral significance of the social dimensions of such choices. The best way to ensure respect for the principle of autonomy, I suggest, is to facilitate and encourage social interactions of a particular, deliberative, kind. This is also the best way to ensure that the broader public interest is taken into account in decision-making. [source]

Data Governance and Stewardship: Designing Data Stewardship Entities and Advancing Data Access

Sara Rosenbaum
U.S. health policy is engaged in a struggle over access to health information, in particular, the conditions under which information should be accessible for research when appropriate privacy protections and security safeguards are in place. The expanded use of health information,an inevitable step in an information age,is widely considered be essential to health system reform. Models exist for the creation of data-sharing arrangements that promote proper use of information in a safe and secure environment and with attention to ethical standards. Data stewardship is a concept with deep roots in the science and practice of data collection, sharing, and analysis. Reflecting the values of fair information practice, data stewardship denotes an approach to the management of data, particularly data that can identify individuals. The concept of a data steward is intended to convey a fiduciary (or trust) level of responsibility toward the data. Data governance is the process by which responsibilities of stewardship are conceptualized and carried out. As the concept of health information data stewardship advances in a technology-enabled environment, the question is whether legal barriers to data access and use will begin to give way. One possible answer may lie in defining the public interest in certain data uses, tying provider participation in federal health programs to the release of all-payer data to recognized data stewardship entities for aggregation and management, and enabling such entities to foster and enable the creation of knowledge through research. [source]

Allowing the Market to Rule: The Case of the United States

David D. Dill
There are increasing calls in the UK and other countries for deregulating universities so that they can better compete in the global market for higher education. Frequent allusions are made to the superiority of the US market-oriented system. But is market competition for first degrees in the US efficient for the larger society? Do the constantly increasing social expenditures for higher education in the US benefit the public interest or do they advantage certain students and faculty members? Two recent economic studies provide greater insight into the impacts of market competition on US higher education. The results of these studies are discussed and their possible implications for higher education policy making in other countries are explored. [source]

Defamation Cases against Historians

Antoon De Baets
Defamation is the act of damaging another's reputation. According to recent legal research, defamation laws may be improperly used in many ways. Some of these uses profoundly affect the historian's work: first, when defamation laws protect reputations of states or nations as such; second, when they prevent legitimate criticism of officials; and, third, when they protect the reputations of deceased persons. The present essay offers two tests of these three abuses in legal cases where historians were defendants. The first test, a short worldwide survey, confirms the occurrence of all three abuses; the second test (an empirical analysis of twenty,one cases (1965,2000) from nine western European countries) the occurrence of the third abuse. Both tests touch on problems central to the historical profession: living versus deceased persons; facts versus opinions; legal versus historical truth; the relationship between human dignity, reputation, and privacy; the role of politicians, veterans, and Holocaust deniers as complainants; the problem of amnestied crimes. The second test,the results of which are based on verdicts, commentaries, and press articles, and presented in a synoptic table,looks closely into the complainants' and defendants' profiles, the allegedly defamatory statements themselves, and the verdicts. All statements deemed defamatory were about such contemporary events as World War II (particularly war crimes, collaboration, and resistance) and colonial wars. Both tests amount to two conclusions. The first one is about historians' professional rights and obligations: historians should make true, but privacy,sensitive or potentially offending, statements only when the public interest is served; otherwise, they should have a right to silence. The second conclusion concerns defamation itself: defamation cases and threats to sue in defamation have a chilling effect on the historical debate; they are often but barely veiled attempts at censorship. [source]

The Influence of Google on Urban Policy in Developing Countries

Abstract ,Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful.' In the case of urban policy in developing countries, Google not only provides information, e.g. the size of a city's population, but also knowledge, e.g. analyses of urban issues and policies. Based on research conducted between January and May 2008, we argue that googling urban policy issues contributes to hegemonic policy perspectives; that the manner in which Google organizes knowledge limits access to alternative policy perspectives and debate; and that this is not in the public interest. We make three claims. The first is that the World Bank, the Cities Alliance and UN Habitat together dominate explanations of urban issues and appropriate policies. The second is that googling policy issues contributes to this dominance. The third claim is that Google especially serves this purpose when the query ,keywords' can be used as labels whose conceptualization can be ,owned'. These claims are demonstrated through explaining how the Google search engine works and creates ,biases'; and then through googling ,city development strategy', ,slum upgrading', and ,municipal services, finances and capacity building in developing countries'. We further demonstrate that finding potential alternative policies requires perseverance and time and pre-existing knowledge of what the policy issues might be. Résumé ,Google a pour mission d'organiser les informations à l'échelle mondiale dans le but de les rendre accessibles et utiles à tous.' En matière de politique urbaine dans les pays en développement, Google fournit des informations (chiffres de la population d'une ville, par exemple), mais aussi du savoir (comme les analyses des enjeux et des politiques de la ville). Une étude menée entre janvier et mai 2008 permet de montrer que les recherches via Google sur les questions de politique urbaine contribuent à des approches politiques hégémoniques, que le mode d'organisation du savoir par Google limite l'accès à des points de vue et débats alternatifs, et que cette situation ne répond pas à l'intérêt public. Trois observations sont formulées: d'abord, la Banque mondiale, l'Alliance des villes et l'ONU-Habitat monopolisent les explications sur les questions urbaines et les politiques appropriées; ensuite, interroger Google sur les enjeux de politique publique contribue à cette hégémonie; enfin, Google va dans ce sens lorsque les ,mots clés' de recherche peuvent servir de ,dénominations' pour des concepts renvoyant à des ,propriétaires'. À l'appui de ces affirmations, nous expliquons comment le moteur de recherche de Google fonctionne et crée des ,distorsions', puis nous présentons les résultats d'interrogations sur ,city development strategy', ,slum upgrading' et ,municipal services, finances and capacity building in developing countries'. Nous montrons également que trouver des politiques alternatives potentielles exige persévérance et temps, ainsi qu'une connaissance préalable des enjeux de politique publique. [source]

Should the State Fund Religious Schools?

abstract In this article, I make a philosophical case for the state to fund religious schools. Ultimately, I shall argue that the state has an obligation to fund and provide oversight of all schools irrespective of their religious or non-religious character. The education of children is in the public interest and therefore the state must assume its responsibility to its future citizens to ensure that they receive a quality education. Still, while both religious schools and the polity have much to be gained from direct funding, I will show that parents and administrators of these schools may have reasons to be diffident toward the state and its hypothetical interference. While the focus of the paper is primarily on the American educational context, the philosophical questions related to state funding and oversight of religious schools transcend any one national context. [source]

A Transaction Structure Approach to Assessing the Dynamics and Impacts of ,Business-to-Business' Electronic Commerce

Dr Richard Hawkins
This paper proposes some ways forward in stimulating and structuring interdisciplinary research on business-to-business electronic commerce. A ,commerce-centered' perspective is proposed that is grounded in concepts of commerce as a complex socio-economic institution. On this basis, a conceptual framework is developed for assessing the dynamics and impacts of electronic commerce in the value chains of products and services. The approach focuses on examining technical change in transaction structures, and how this relates to the evolution of electronically-mediated business relationships in the rapidly developing Internet environment. The approach is oriented towards critical research questions concerning the effects of electronic commerce on the ways various market participants exercise and/or respond to control over the organization and operation of value chains, and the implications for business, the public interest and policy. The practical research possibilities of the transaction structure approach are then discussed as oriented toward a comparative analytical framework. [source]

The Role of Biotechnology in Modern Food Production

ABSTRACT: Modern food production technology is given great challenges by the emerging fields of biotechnology and molecular biology. Knowledge of conventional fermentation technology is upgraded by the gene level explanations of enzyme actions and physiological functions of biomaterials derived therefrom. The use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and their products in food widens the availability of resources while also raising public interest about safety and labeling. As an example of the application of molecular biology in conventional fermentation technology the selection of proteases from a Bacillus species grown in Korean traditional soybean fermentation starter, Meju, and the production of peptides with blood cholesterol lowering effect, obtained from soybean protein hydrolysate, are presented. Recent developments in the Korean bioindustry are reviewed as an example of the role of biotechnology in the food industry. The present status of GMO enzymes in food production is reviewed and safety issues about GMO use in the food system are discussed. [source]

How to become your own worst adversary: examining the connection between managerial attributions and organizational relationships with public interest stakeholders,

James E. Mattingly
According to numerous studies across multiple disciplines in the social sciences, business organizations tend to develop adversarial relationships with representatives of the public interest. A survey of 62 Public Affairs Managers in publicly held U.S. corporations finds that organizations adopt relational styles similar to those theorized in studies of inter-organizational conflict, organizational communication and stakeholder management. Empirical results support the descriptive power of a two-dimensional model reflecting four relational styles that participating organizations exhibited: avoidance, compliance, co-optation and negotiation. The two dimensions that constitute the model are cooperativeness and boundary spanning. More importantly, managers who attributed power and legitimacy to public interest group stakeholders reported that their organizations were more likely to cooperate with these stakeholders. On the other hand, managers who perceived public interest groups' claims having urgency were more likely to develop communicative, boundary spanning relationships with public interest groups but these relationships were less likely to be cooperative. Because unhealthy relationships with these groups can be detrimental to an organization's long-term prospects, managers must be careful to recognize public interest organizations as potent and legitimate potential allies. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]