Category / BU research

New research paper published by Professor Dimitrios Buhalis in Journal of Advertising 

New research paper published by Professor Dimitrios Buhalis in Journal of Advertising 

Ali Selcuk Can, Yuksel Ekinci, Giampaolo Viglia & Dimitrios Buhalis (2020):
Stronger Together? Tourists’ Behavioral Responses to Joint Brand Advertising,
Journal of Advertising https://doi.org/10.1080/00913367.2020.1809574

free eprints https://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/76JWSAAMIBF3ZHQXFEHT/full?target=10.1080/00913367.2020.1809574

 

Abstract 

Drawing on collaboration theory, this research investigates the effect of joint versus single brand advertising on tourists’ behavioral responses with two experiments. Study 1 employs a field experiment to examine the effect of joint brand advertising on tourists’ actual information search behavior. Study 2 uses a laboratory experiment to investigate the effect of joint brand advertising on tourists’ intention to visit a destination and measures whether this relationship is mediated by product interest. Study 1 suggests that, compared to single brand advertising, joint brand advertising increases tourists’ search behavior. Study 2 shows that joint brand advertising stimulates product interest, which in turn increases tourists’ intention to visit. The mediating role of product interest disappears when a destination brand forms a partnership with a lesser-reputed travel intermediary brand. The research provides implications for theory development in the area of tourism advertising, while also identifying best practices for advertisers on how to optimize the effectiveness of their campaigns.

 

Demystify Author Article Workflow Masterclass

How well do you really understand how an academic author is published?

With around three million articles published a year*, authors are under increasing pressures to publish in recognized and credible journals – that’s a lot of articles! Some are publishing for the first time, others publishing their 70th article ‘that’ year.

The presenter will run through the basics of the academic author user journey for pre, during and post-publication workflow. The webinar will also look at their pain points, and opportunities to connect with authors as part of their journey.

Register now to better connect with authors. Can’t make the date? No problem, register and you will be sent access to the recorded version when suits you.

Please click on the link below to sign up to the webinar:

https://zoom.us/webinar/register/2815983615199/WN_UUMlfAlBSoWY1xYris6-wQ

Research Professional – all you need to know

Every BU academic has a Research Professional account which delivers weekly emails detailing funding opportunities in their broad subject area. To really make the most of your Research Professional account, you should tailor it further by establishing additional alerts based on your specific area of expertise. The Funding Development Team Officers can assist you with this, if required.

Research Professional have created several guides to help introduce users to Research Professional. These can be downloaded here.

Quick Start Guide: Explains to users their first steps with the website, from creating an account to searching for content and setting up email alerts, all in the space of a single page.

User Guide: More detailed information covering all the key aspects of using Research Professional.

Administrator Guide: A detailed description of the administrator functionality.

In addition to the above, there are a set of 2-3 minute videos online, designed to take a user through all the key features of Research Professional. To access the videos, please use the following link: http://www.youtube.com/researchprofessional

Research Professional are running a series of online training broadcasts aimed at introducing users to the basics of creating and configuring their accounts on Research Professional. They are holding monthly sessions, covering everything you need to get started with Research Professional. The broadcast sessions will run for no more than 60 minutes, with the opportunity to ask questions via text chat. Each session will cover:

  • Self registration and logging in
  • Building searches
  • Setting personalised alerts
  • Saving and bookmarking items
  • Subscribing to news alerts
  • Configuring your personal profile

Each session will run between 10.00am and 11.00am (UK) on the fourth Tuesday of each month. You can register here for your preferred date:

8th September 2020

10th November 2020

These are free and comprehensive training sessions and so this is a good opportunity to get to grips with how Research Professional can work for you.

Have you noticed the pink box on the BU Research Blog homepage?

By clicking on this box, on the left of the Research Blog home page just under the text ‘Funding Opportunities‘, you access a Research Professional real-time search of the calls announced by the Major UK Funders. Use this feature to stay up to date with funding calls. Please note that you will have to be on campus or connecting to your desktop via our VPN to fully access this service.

Writing Week – support from BUCRU and RDS

Writing Week in the Faculty of Health and Social Sciences is coming up next week and we wanted to highlight some of the expertise within BUCRU and NIHR RDS (Research Design Service) and remind you that we’re available to provide support for your health or social care research.

Bournemouth University Clinical Research Unit (BUCRU) supports researchers in improving the quality, quantity and efficiency of research across the University and local NHS Trusts.

We do this by:

  • Helping researchers develop high quality applications for external research funding (including small grants)
  • Ongoing involvement in funded research projects

How can we help?

BUCRU/RDS can provide help in the following areas:

  • Formulating research questions
  • Building an appropriate team
  • Study design
  • Appropriate methodologies for quantitative research, e.g. statistical issues, health economics
  • Appropriate methodologies for qualitative research, e.g. sampling, analytical strategies
  • Advice on data management and data analysis
  • Identifying suitable funding sources
  • Writing plain English summaries
  • Identifying the resources required for a successful project
  • Critical reviews of proposed grant applications can be obtained through our Project Review Committee before they are sent to a funding body.
  • Patient and public involvement in research
  • Trial management
  • Ethics, governance and other regulatory issues
  • Linking University and NHS researchers

Over the coming weeks we’ll cover some of these areas in more detail in future blogs and how we can help you.

Our support is available to Bournemouth University staff and people working locally in the NHS, and depending on the support you require, is mostly free of charge. There are no general restrictions on topic area or professional background of the researcher.

If you would like support in developing your research please get in touch through bucru@bournemouth.ac.uk or by calling us on 01202 961939. Please see our website for further information, details of our current and previous projects and a link to our recent newsletter.

BU Open Access Publication Fund

The BU Open Access Publication Fund policy and procedure has recently been reviewed and revised to reflect changes to this year’s budget. The newly revised policy and checklist can be found here

BU now also benefit from various Open Access agreements through JISC deals including with publishers like Wiley, Sage and Springer. Please see the links below for more information about the agreement and eligible journal titles:

SAGE – https://uk.sagepub.com/en-gb/eur/open-access-agreements-at-sage/united-kingdom

Wiley – https://authorservices.wiley.com/author-resources/Journal-Authors/open-access/affiliation-policies-payments/jisc-agreement.html

Springer Compact – https://www.springer.com/gp/open-access/springer-open-choice/springer-compact/for-uk-authors-intro/731990

Please do check out the various open access deals that BU have with these publishers to make full use of these deals.

For more information, please contact OpenAccess@bournemouth.ac.uk.

 

 

Conversation article: the PPI scandal is far from over – here’s why

Shutterstock/kamui29

Julie Robson, Bournemouth University

The PPI scandal led to the largest consumer redress scheme in British history, with over £38 billion paid to claimants to date. The deadline for customers to submit their claims was set at midnight on August 29 2019. But, almost one year later, hundreds of thousands of registered claims remain outstanding. And to make matters worse for the banks, a swathe of new claims have started rolling in.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) hoped the deadline would bring the scandal to an orderly conclusion and offer protection to consumers while helping to restore market integrity. The banks hoped it would enable them to draw a line under it and move on. But the situation seems to be getting worse.

The problem now comes in the form of unfair commission payments. PPI commission rates were deemed to be unfair for two main reasons: when they were too high or when they were kept secret.

When they were too high they accounted for, on average, 67% of the PPI price. In the most serious cases they accounted for 95% of the cost of a PPI policy.

When secret, they were (obviously) undisclosed to the customer. That customer – had they been better informed – may have queried the value of their PPI policy. Especially if they had they known that the majority of the price was not going to the product provider (for example, the insurer underwriting the protection cover for the loan or credit card) but to the bank who sold the PPI policy to them.

Court judgements

Awareness of the unfair commission payments on PPI policies is not new. But recent court decisions mean that customers can potentially claw back all of the commission they have paid and claim after the 2019 deadline.

The issue first came to light in the November 2014 Supreme Court case, Plevin v Paragon Personal Finance Ltd, after which the FCA changed its guidance on what could be claimed as part of the PPI redress scheme. This change enabled customers to claim commission that accounted for over 50% of the price of the PPI policy and became known as the Plevin rule.

Payments to customers were however restricted to commission that was in excess of 50%. In other words, successful claimants only received part of the commission that had been paid to the banks.

A series of other court cases saw the position change again, as claimants were awarded the full commission where the bank failed to disclose large commission payments to the customer. As almost all PPI policies earned high commission rates, this change was significant and opened the floodgates to new claims.

Customers who have received a partial payment, have had their claims rejected or have not claimed so far can now claim, citing the unfair compensation. Even customers who were not mis-sold PPI and were happy with their policy can potentially claim as the high commission payments may not have been disclosed to them.

The potential for new PPI claims based on the unfair commission payments could not have come at a worse time for the banks as they are still facing a backlog of existing claims to process. A survey conducted in March this year found that 60% of PPI claimants had not heard from their bank about the progress of their claim and half of these had not even received an acknowledgement letter.

Banks were overwhelmed by the volume of claims and although the expected time for banks to respond to such claims is typically eight weeks, the FCA managed this expectation by predicting that most claims would be resolved by summer 2020.

Coronavirus disruption

But this deadline was set before COVID-19 disrupted the world and it now appears unlikely to be met. Now many customers remain frustrated that their cases have not been resolved as the new unfair commission charges issue further aggravates and complicates the issue.

The original PPI scandal severely damaged consumer trust in the banks as a lack of integrity was at the heart of the case. PPI mis-selling was something that the banks could have controlled and was an intentional act as the banks placed profits above their customer welfare.

My own research has shown that when trust is damaged by a lack of integrity, it is difficult to restore. The banks needed to display clear evidence of an intention to get rid of negative influences.

For a start, all banks should have immediately apologised for the mis-selling. Some did, but this was only after they lost a high court case trying to overturn the FCAs ruling on PPI mis-selling. The banks really needed to signal to employees the importance of a customer-centered culture and change employee incentive systems to align with long-term performance, rather than short-term profit.

Banks need to embed ethical values into their routine actions and decisions. So far, the evidence is that not all banks have bothered to take such steps.

Julie Robson, Associate Professor Marketing, Bournemouth University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Productive week CMMPH

Some weeks are more productive than others and this week the  academics in the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health (CMMPH) have been very busy.   Professor Hundley published  a paper  ‘The initiation of labour at term gestation: physiology and practice implications’ with two midwifery colleagues [1].   The further two CMMPH paper accepted this week were systematic reviews: (a)  Perceived Stress and Diet Quality in Women of Reproductive Age: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis; and (b)  ‘Midwives’ views towards women using mHealth and eHealth to self-monitor their pregnancy: A systematic review of the literature’ [2-3].  Fourthly, CMMPH PhD student Sulochana Dhakal-Rai had a poster accepted at this year’s GLOW conference, which will be held, for the first time, online.  This poster based on her PhD ‘Factors contributing to rising caesarean section rates in South Asia: ​a systematic review’ is supervised by Dr. Juliet Wood, Dr. Pramod Regmi, Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen and Prof.  Ganesh Dangal (based in Nepal).

 

Congratulations!

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

 

References:

  1. Hundley V, Downe S, Buckley S (2020) The initiation of labour at term gestation: physiology and practice implications. Best Practice & Research Clinical Obstetrics & Gynecology 67: 4-18  https://www.sciencedirect.com/journal/best-practice-and-research-clinical-obstetrics-and-gynaecology/vol/67/suppl/C
  2. Khaled K, Tsofliou F, Hundley V, Helmreich R, Almilaji O Perceived Stress and Diet Quality in Women of Reproductive Age: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis Nutrition (in press) 

  3. Vickery M, van Teijlingen E, Hundley V, Smith GB, Way S, Westward G. Midwives’ views towards women using mHealth and eHealth to self-monitor their pregnancy: A systematic review of the literature.  European Journal of Midwifery (in press)

Conversation article: Going green dramatically benefits businesses

Yoyo Dy/Unsplash, FAL

Jagannadha Pawan Tamvada, University of Southampton and Mili Shrivastava, Bournemouth University

The onset of the pandemic and the ensuing lockdown have imperilled businesses worldwide. It will be tempting for firms to put any commitment to the environment in the back seat as they attempt to recover, especially as some governments reduce requirements and undermine environmental protection.

This is short-sighted: businesses do not have to sacrifice their environmental goals for protecting their growth. Greening initiatives like offering green products or services, introducing green processes internally, hiring employees to promote sustainable practices, or going beyond compliance requirements, can actually help firms.

Using data on 9,236 small and medium businesses in 35 countries across Europe and the US, our research suggests that on average, businesses benefit from going green, although the type of greening that gives the most significant benefit may differ between firms.

Here are four main ways that greening can benefit businesses.

1. Innovative market niches

By offering new green products or services, a business is more likely to cater to an emerging trend or niche market, which can make it more competitive. Frugalpac, a UK-based company that makes paper-based packaging for liquids that cut carbon footprints, received a £2 million investment during the pandemic – a time when most other companies were struggling for finance.

Already seeing widespread success for their recycled paper coffee cup, Frugalpac’s innovative paper wine bottle, also made from 94% recycled paper, has led to new opportunities and partnerships.

Companies focused on sustainability can rapidly expand by catering to new niche markets internationally. Consider D’light, a company that offers innovative lighting solutions for people who do not have access to electricity. The company has transformed the lives of more than 100 million people across 70 countries through its green product offerings while raising US$197 million (£150 million) in investment.

Earlier this year, the Danish energy supplier Ørsted, formerly known as Danish Oil and Natural Gas, was named the most sustainable company in the world. This success followed from its transformation to a green energy supplier – which went hand in hand with accelerated profits.

By catering to new niche markets using green products and services, these businesses have emerged as future leaders in their sectors. Of course, not all companies are suited to finding such niches. But sustainability can be promoted in other ways like green working practices and processes, for example.

2. Employee motivation

Job seekers are increasingly attracted to companies that care for the environment. The employees of firms that promote sustainability are more likely to believe that their employer will care for them, and are more satisfied with their jobs.

Such companies create a higher sense of personal and organisational purpose that makes work meaningful. A recent poll shows that millennials and Gen Z’s are more concerned about the environment than any previous generation. This means they prioritise employers who put sustainability at the forefront.

Millenials and Gen Z’s are more worried about the environment than any previous generations.
LinkedIn Sales Navigator/Unsplash, FAL

By some estimates, companies that follow green practices have a 16% boost in employee productivity. Although establishing a direct causal link can be difficult, some of the greenest companies, such as Cisco, Tarmac or Stantec, are also considered the greatest companies by employees.

3. More engagement

Greening initiatives signal to external stakeholders, such as investors and customers, that a business is committed to doing good. This can lead to increased investment, customers and stakeholder loyalty. This is pertinent in the aftermath of COVID-19 as there is heightened awareness about the need to protect the environment.

For example, highly sustainable companies benefit from superior stock market performance in the long run, according to research looking at American companies in the period 1993-2009. Investors are increasingly questioning firms on their commitment to sustainability, and expecting meaningful steps from them for integrating consideration of such issues into their investing criteria. This is reflected by the tenfold increase in global sustainability investment to US$30.7 trillion by April 2019 since 2004.

More recently, Polysolar, a company that makes glazed windows that generate electricity, has secured more than double the investment it sought on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube. And large companies such as Unilever have benefited from increased stakeholder engagement and loyalty by adopting greening practices and products, addressing a dark history of environmental exploitation.

4. Increased efficiency

Greening processes can result in efficiency gains by reducing energy costs, allowing businesses to secure green tax credits, improving operational efficiency, and embedding circular economy principles internally.

Such gains directly translate into commercial benefits. As many as 75% of UK businesses that invested in green technologies subsequently enjoyed commercial benefits, even if financial concerns pose barriers to making these green investments in the first place. For large companies such as Proctor & Gamble, these gains can run into billions of pounds.

Conversely, in cases where businesses harm the environment, they have to be prepared to incur significant costs. A prominent example is the famous case of Volkswagen, which has even adversely impacted the performance of other German car manufacturers like BMW and Mercedes Benz.

For all these reasons, time is ripe for business to go green.

Jagannadha Pawan Tamvada, Associate Professor in Strategy and Innovation, University of Southampton and Mili Shrivastava, Senior Lecturer in Strategy, Bournemouth University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Conversation article: The hidden impact of coronavirus on Gypsy, Roma Travellers

Studio 2/Shutterstock

Vanessa Heaslip, Bournemouth University and Jonathan Parker, Bournemouth University

We know well by now that coronavirus does not affect everyone equally. In England and Wales, Black people are four times more likely die from COVID-19 than white people, while people from a Bangladeshi background are twice as likely. Coronavirus has also had a disproportionate effect on people experiencing poverty.

It’s clear that this disease heightens existing inequalities. Some of the most marginalised people in the UK are Gypsy, Roma Travellers, yet they are often left out of research and outreach programmes.

We do not currently know the rates of death and severe illness among these communities. And without better data about their experiences of COVID-19, the true impacts of the pandemic on Gypsy, Roma Travellers could remain dangerously hidden.

Health inequalities

Gypsy, Roma Travellers are not a homogeneous group, but rather consist of different communities with diverse needs. Even within the same community group, there can be many varied experiences of living through the pandemic depending upon personal, social and environmental factors.

That said, research indicates that the continuing COVID-19 pandemic will be extremely challenging for many individuals within the disparate communities.

The last census in 2011 noted that 76% of Gypsy, Roma Travellers in England and Wales lived in houses or apartments. This offers the least challenging experience, as people have access to basic amenities such as electricity, gas, sanitation and water supplies.

Those living in caravans, however, are likely to experience more difficulties. A 2019 Houses of Commons briefing paper noted there were 22,662 Traveller caravans in England, of which 57% were on private sites, 29% were on local authority sites and 14% were on caravan sites. There are increased challenges for those living on these sites during the pandemic, including accessibility of gas bottles, sewerage and obtaining fresh water. Those living on unauthorised sites experience the most significant problems, especially in accessing suitable sanitation and waste disposal.

Discriminatory policies towards these communities have meant that sites, whether they are provided by a local authority or privately run, are more likely to be located close to motorways, major roads, railways, refuse tips, sewage works and industrial estates, all of which are damaging to the health of people who live there. It is perhaps not surprising therefore, that Gypsy, Roma Travellers have a worse health status than the wider community average, dying between seven to 20 years earlier than the rest of the population.

A review across five regions in England and Wales noted that 66% of Gypsy, Roma Travellers had bad, very bad or poor health. Poor air quality, proximity to industrial sites, asthma and repeated chest infections in children and older people were noted in around half of all interviews undertaken for the review. Health access is incredibly difficult for people in these communities, which means that such problems are often not picked up until much later in the illness trajectory, leading to poorly managed chronic conditions.

As COVID-19 is primarily a respiratory disease, this places Gypsy, Roma Travellers in a precarious position – many will meet the criteria for high or moderate risk.

The impact of social distancing

As well as physical health impacts, we also know that there are mental health consequences that come from the COVID-19 pandemic. These too are likely to disproportionately affect Gypsy, Roma Travellers.

These communities often have a very strong family culture, and many live in large, extended family groups. This culture is an important protective mechanism against the harsh stigma and discrimination they face in wider society.

A desire to roam and travel is also deeply embedded as a core part of the identity of Gypsy, Roma Travellers. The distancing measures enacted in response to coronavirus reduce social contact within communities as well as people’s ability to be nomadic and roam. Both of these factors have implications for the long-term mental health and well-being of people within these communities in which mental ill-health is on the increase.

A lack of data

As well as widespread stigma, a major difficulty in truly understanding the impact of coronavirus on Gypsy, Roma Traveller communities is a lack of systematic data collection.

While Gypsy, Roma Travellers were recognised as a distinct ethnic minority category in the last census, the NHS does not currently incorporate this category into their ethnicity data. As such, individuals are not identified in health services as originating from these communities. Nor are they included as a specific ethnicity in Public Health England’s reports on COVID-19 health disparities. Instead they are merged into the category of “any other white background”.

Unless this is addressed at a national level, the health impact of coronavirus on these marginalised communities will remain hidden.

Vanessa Heaslip, Principal Academic Nursing, Bournemouth University and Jonathan Parker, Professor of Society & Social Welfare and Director of the Centre for Social Work and Social Policy, Bournemouth University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Preprints, what do we know about them?

Source: https://www.aje.com/arc/benefits-of-preprints-for-researchers/

A preprint is a version of a research manuscript published before peer review.  Normally, these are published electronically and made freely available on large databases or preprint servers.  Some of the popular preprint servers include arXiv, PeerJ, The Open Science Framework, OSF Preprints. Preprint servers provide a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) to enable you to link to your work and version control to curate the different versions as you make changes to your manuscript. Publishing a preprint can speed up the process of disseminating your research and avoiding any delays caused by the publication process.

Preprints achieve many of the goals of journal publishing, but within a much shorter time frame. The biggest benefits fall into 3 areas: creditfeedback, and visibility.

Credit – When you post a preprint with your research results, you can firmly stake a claim to the work you’ve done. If there is any subsequent discussion of who found a particular result first, you can point to the preprint as a public, conclusive record of your data. Most preprints are assigned a digital object identifier (DOI), which allows your work to become a permanent part of the scholarly record – one that can be referenced in any dispute over who discovered something first.

Feedback – In the traditional system, a submitted manuscript receives feedback from 2 or 3 peer reviewers before publication. With a preprint, other researchers can discover your work sooner, potentially pointing out critical flaws or errors, suggest new studies or data that strengthen your argument or even recommend a collaboration that could lead to publication in a more prestigious journal.

Visibility – Preprints are not the final form of a research paper for most authors. Thankfully, preprints and infrastructure providers like Crossref link to the final published article whenever possible, meaning that your preprint can serve to bring new readers to your published paper. A study in the Journal of the American Medical Association saw notable increases in citations and Altmetric scores when authors had posted their work first as a preprint.

Normally journal publishers will not accept work that is published or submitted elsewhere.  Journal publishers in subjects where preprints are widely used will accept research that has been previously released as a preprint.   As preprints emerge as a normal part of the publishing process in new subject areas, questions about whether preprints are regarded as previously published are still being worked through.  It would be prudent to check the policies of publishers who may be the ultimate publishers of your research if you choose to publish your research as a preprint.

Journal publishers encourage the publication of preprints after a paper has been accepted. This is the Green Route to Open Access publication.  It is important that the publisher’s policies on preprints after publication / submission are checked on the SherpaRoMEO database.

In recent developments (2017) research funders The Welcome Trust, the Medical Research Council and others have accepted the inclusion of references to preprints in grant applications as evidence of current research activity.

However, there are some crucial points to consider, before you submit your preprint to a server. The preprint guidelines below from Wiley provide some useful points to consider:

  • Posting of a preprint may violate the copyright agreement or understanding held with a publisher. When you submit an article to a journal you are doing so with the implicit understanding that an accepted article will be published and the copyright for that article then transferred to the publisher. It is ethically wrong to post a preprint that has benefitted from the resources of a publishing house (revision after peer review, copy editing, publication on Wiley Online Library, etc.); especially where the revised, accepted article, and final published versions of a paper are concerned.
  • A preprint service provider may ask authors to sign an agreement that prevents publication of the work in a journal later. On ChemRxiv, authors may control the usage rights for their posted preprint with one of three CC BY attribution licenses. When posting on a preprint server, such as ChemRxiv, we recommend that authors retain the rights to their work through use of a non-exclusive license to distribute interim research products (e.g., with a CC-BY-NC-ND or no reuse license), so that their publication options are not limited in any way later on. If an author posts a preprint under one of these licenses, the author can grant the publisher rights to use in a commercial and/or derivative manner because the author has retained those rights.
  • Failure to declare the preprint(s) associated with submission to a journal may be non-compliant with the journal′s Notice to Authors and could be grounds for rejection of a submitted manuscript.
  • Publicity of preprints through media coverage (e.g., press releases) is not advised when publication of the work in a journal is envisaged. Authors run the risk of attracting media attention to the work before it has undergone a thorough peer-review process.

As mentioned above, different publishers have different policies regarding preprints so do check each publisher policy on the SherpaRoMEO database for accurate information.

For more information on preprints, please visit the links below:

https://www.aje.com/arc/benefits-of-preprints-for-researchers/

https://ambulance.libguides.com/c.php?g=661297&p=4671549

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/page/journal/15213773/homepage/preprints

HRA UPDATE: guidance on undergraduate and master’s research projects

Please see below for an update from the Health Research Authority surrounding the review of undergraduate and master’s research projects.

‘Back in March the HRA and devolved administrations announced we had decided to stop reviewing applications for individual undergraduate and master’s student projects until further notice while we prioritised the urgent review of COVID-19 studies. This was also due to the significant pressure on the NHS/HSC, limiting its ability to participate in research studies unrelated to COVID-19.

As the lockdown eases, we wanted to update students, supervisors and HEIs on our current position in relation to student research and ethics review. For now, our existing position of not reviewing applications for individual undergraduate and master’s student projects will remain in place. This means that any student project requiring approvals will not be able to proceed. Any students with approved studies are reminded to check with the relevant NHS/HSC organisations locally about whether or not their projects may continue.

In the autumn we will publish our proposed new guidelines for student research for consultation in use. Students, research supervisors and HEIs will be invited to share their opinions and help shape our framework.

You can find more information on our current position on our website: https://www.hra.nhs.uk/planning-and-improving-research/research-planning/student-research/

The Encyclopedia of Tourism Management and Marketing has already received more than 100 entries and has already accepted 10 entries!

ENCYCLOPEDIA OF TOURISM MANAGEMENT AND MARKETING
Editor in Chief: Professor Dimitrios Buhalis, EDWARD ELGAR PUBLISHING LIMITED

The Encyclopedia of Tourism Management and Marketing has already received more than 100 entries and has already accepted 10 entries! See some examples of the accepted terms on https://tinyurl.com/encyEXAMPLES. These include terms:

INTERPRETATION (Gianna Moscardo),
PEACE (Anna Farmaki),
SUSTAINABLE TOURISM (David Weaver),
TOURISM SATELLITE ACCOUNT (Cristi Frenț),
SLOW TOURISM (Janet Dickinson),
ARCHIPELAGO (Godfrey Baldacchino),
SMART TOURISM (Dimitrios Buhalis).
 
 
Submit your 200 words proposal for an entry on https://eep.manuscriptmanager.net/
as soon as possible and latest by 30 September 2020.
A term is 1500 words – 1 figure – 8 references.
Please Upload 200-word proposal as soon as possible and latest by 30/9
and upload your entry by 31 December 2020. There will be no extensions!
You can upload the entire entry too if you are ready
and you are confident that you have a comprehensive entry.
The sooner you can complete this assignment the better!
 
Examples of Accepted Terms https://tinyurl.com/encyEXAMPLES

Conversation article: Link between autism and eating disorders may be due to an inability to identify emotions

Alexithymia is a personality trait characterised by an inability to identify and describe emotions.
Rawpixel.com/ Shutterstock

Rachel Moseley, Bournemouth University and Laura Renshaw-Vuillier, Bournemouth University

Eating disorders have the highest mortality rates of any mental illness. They don’t discriminate, affecting people of all ethnicities, sexualities, gender identities, ages and backgrounds. However, one group is disproportionately affected by these disorders: people on the autism spectrum.

Eating disorders in autistic people are poorly understood, but they tend to be more severe and long-lasting. The longer a person lives with their eating disorder, the harder it is to recover. This may partly explain why some studies suggest autistic people have a poorer prognosis in therapy.

Longer-lasting eating disorders are associated with a greater likelihood of death. The fact that autistic people are vulnerable to chronic eating disorders, alongside other mental illnesses, may be one reason why they die one to three decades earlier, on average, than non-autistic people.

So why are autistic people more vulnerable to eating disorders? A couple of reasons have been suggested.

Dieting

One general and major risk factor for developing an eating disorder is dieting. For people who might already be genetically vulnerable to eating disorders, dieting seems to kick-start something in the brain that can develop the disorder.

While autistic people aren’t more likely to diet than the average person, certain features of autism – including attention to detail, determination and intense fixated interests – may make them better able to maintain the restrictions needed for long-term weight loss when they choose to diet.

The cognitive rigidity that we see in autistic people may also make it easy for them to get stuck in patterns of eating behaviour, while their preference for sameness may cause them to have a limited diet to begin with. For some autistic people, insensitivity to hunger, gastrointestinal problems and sensitivity to tastes, smells and textures make eating difficult anyway.

Paper bag with frowning face next to empty plate and cutlery.
Certain autism traits may already make eating difficult for some.
ChameleonsEye/ Shutterstock

Moreover, because autistic people are often bullied and socially isolated, dieting and weight loss may give them back a sense of control, predictability, reward and self-worth. Eating disorders may even numb feelings of anxiety and depression.

Alexithymia

A core feature of people with eating disorders is that they find it difficult to identify and cope with emotion. As autistic people struggle with emotions in similar ways, our research team wondered whether this might help explain why they are more likely to have eating disorders.

The personality trait characterised by an inability to identify and describe emotions is called alexithymia. Being alexithymic is like being emotionally colour-blind, and it ranges from subtle to severe. While one alexithymic person might find it hard to pinpoint what emotion they’re feeling, another might notice physical signs such as a racing heart and be able to identify they’re feeling angry or frightened.

Alexithymia is associated with many negative outcomes like suicide and self-injury. In part, this may be because people who cannot identify or express their emotions find it hard to soothe themselves or get support from others.

To see whether alexithymia might contribute to eating disorders in autism, we looked at eating-disorder symptoms and autistic traits in the general population. Autism is a spectrum disorder, so everyone has some level of autistic traits – it does not mean they are actually autistic. Nevertheless, these traits can tell us something about the nature of autism itself.

In two experiments with 421 participants, we found that higher autistic traits correlated with higher eating-disorder symptoms. We also found that higher levels of alexithymia wholly or partially explained this relationship. Our results suggest that having higher autistic traits alongside difficulties identifying and describing emotions may make these people more vulnerable to developing eating-disorder symptoms.

Interestingly, we found differences between male and female participants. While alexithymia was related to eating-disorder symptoms in women, there were no links between alexithymia and eating-disorder symptoms in men. Since the male group was small, however, we couldn’t be sure these findings would hold up in a bigger sample.

Next steps

This research can’t show conclusively that alexithymia causes eating disorder symptoms in people with autistic traits, or indeed autistic people. It might be that the relationships work backwards, and eating-disorder symptoms give rise to alexithymia and to autistic features.

However, first-person accounts from autistic people are consistent with the idea that alexithymia might play a role in their eating disorders. One participant even described how restricting her calorie intake reduced internal sensations that – unknown to her, being unable to identify them – caused her much anxiety.

If supported by further research, these findings have potential implications for treatment. Clinicians already know that therapies need to be tailored for autistic and non-autistic patients, but how best to achieve this is still uncertain. Preliminary research like this may offer some clue by highlighting alexithymia as a potential target. Alexithymia is currently not addressed by clinicians either in autistic people or in those with eating disorders

As there are many negative outcomes associated with being autistic – such as high suicide rates and greater risk of eating disorders – it will be important to explore how much alexithymia, not autism itself, actually contributes to these negative outcomes. Focused interventions to treat alexithymia might potentially reduce these risks.

Rachel Moseley, Senior Lecturer in Psychology, Bournemouth University and Laura Renshaw-Vuillier, Senior Lecturer, Psychology, Bournemouth University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Conversation article: Video games affect your moral development but only until you’re 18

Pixel-Shot/Shutterstock, Author provided

Sarah Hodge, Bournemouth University

Young people have probably spent much more of their time than usual playing video games over the last few months thanks to the coronvirus pandemic. One report from telecoms firm Verizon said online gaming use went up 75% in the first week of lockdown in the US.

What impact might this have on young people’s development? One area that people are often concerned about is the effect of video games, particularly violent ones, on moral reasoning. My colleagues and I recently published research that suggested games have no significant effect on the moral development of university-age students but can affect younger adolescents. This supports the use of an age-rating system for video game purchases.

Our sense of morality and the way we make moral decisions – our moral reasoning – develop as we grow up and become more aware of life in wider society. For example, our thoughts about right and wrong are initially based on what we think the punishments and/or rewards could be. This then develops into a greater understanding of the role of social factors and circumstances in moral decisions.

There is a long-standing debate around the effects of video games on moral development, particularly in young people, which typically focuses on whether violent content causes aggressive or violent behaviour.

Yet the moral dimension of video games is far more complex than just their representation of violence, as they often require players to make a range of moral choices. For example, players from the game BioShock have to choose whether to kill or rescue a little girl character known as a little sister.

A player with more mature moral reasoning may consider the wider social implications and consequences of this choice rather than just the punishment or rewards meted out by the game. For example, they may consider their own conscience and that they could feel bad about choosing to kill the little girl.

Plastic arcade game gun pointed at screen.
Video games’ affect on moral reasoning goes beyond how violent they are.
Sean Locke Photography/Shutterstock

We surveyed a group of 166 secondary school students aged 11-18 and a group of 135 university students aged 17-27 to assess their gaming habits and the development of their moral reasoning using what’s known as the sociomoral reflection measure . This involved asking participants 11 questions on topics such as the importance of keeping promises, telling the truth, obeying the law and preserving life. The results suggested a stark difference between the two groups.

Among secondary students, we found evidence that playing video games could have an affect on moral development. Whereas female adolescents usually have more developed moral reasoning, in this case we found that males, who were more likely to play video games for longer, actually had higher levels of reasoning. We also found those who played a greater variety of genres of video games also had more developed reasoning.

This suggests that playing video games could actually support moral development. But other factors, including feeling less engaged with and immersed in a game, playing games with more mature content, and specifically playing the games Call of Duty and playing Grand Theft Auto, were linked (albeit weakly) with less developed moral reasoning.

No effect after 18

Overall, the evidence suggested adolescent moral development could be affected in some way by playing video games. However, there was little to no relationship between the university students’ moral reasoning development and video game play. This echoes previous research that found playing violent video games between the ages of 14 and 17 made you more likely to do so in the future, but found no such relationship for 18- to 21-year-olds.

This might be explained by the fact that 18 is the age at which young people in many countries are deemed to have become adult, leading to many changes and new experiences in their lives, such as starting full-time work or higher education. This could help support their moral development such that video games are no longer likely to be influential, or at least that currently available video games are no longer challenging enough to affect people.

The implication is that age rating systems on video games, such as the PEGI and ESRB systems, are important because under-18s appear more susceptible to the moral effects of games. But our research also highlights that it is not just what teenagers play but how they play it that can make a difference. So engaging with games for a wide variety of genres could be as important for encouraging moral development as playing age-appropriate games.

Sarah Hodge, Lecturer in Psychology and Cyberpsychology, Bournemouth University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.