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This chapter deals with some conceptual (theoretical) foundations of research. Practical business research is often thought of as collecting data from various statistical publications, constructing questionnaires, and analysing data by using computers. Research, however, also comprises a variety of important, non-empirical tasks, such as finding/‘constructing’ a precise problem, and developing perspectives or models to represent the problem under scrutiny. In fact, such aspects of research are often the most crucial and skill demanding. The quality of the work done at the conceptual (theoretical) level largely determines the quality of the final empirical research. This is also the case in practical business research. Important topics focused on in this chapter are the research process and the role of concepts and theory.
A first step in understanding on-again/off-again relationships is to describe them. This chapter outlines the definition of these relationships and the collective of descriptive information from the research. Across a variety of college student, community, crowdsourcing, and secondary dataset samples, the research shows that a majority of individuals (approximately two-thirds) experience at least one on-off relationship. These relationships tend to go through two to three renewals on average and last just as long or longer than committed romantic relationships that do not break up and renew. Although the vast majority of breakups are initiated by one partner, about half of the renewals are characterized as mutual. Few sex or sexual orientation differences have emerged thus far, but additional research assessing differences among various age cohorts, cultures, and other demographic factors is needed. This chapter ends with a discussion of why the experience of relationship cycling is likely to continue in today’s dating landscape.
This chapter focuses on how emotions are expressed, enacted and communicated in language. Although words such as “anger,” “joy,” and “fear” sound like names for precisely defined psychological objects, their exact descriptive meaning is hard to pin down. Disagreements about which words count as emotion names are common both within and across societies, with language encoding emotional events in different ways depending on circumstances. Emotion words also serve a range of pragmatic and performative functions in conversations and arguments. They can convey blame or assign credit, and establish, maintain or break social connections as well as merely describe personal experience. No all-purpose representational system seems capable of explaining this diversity. Indeed, the main purpose of emotional language may be to facilitate various forms of social influence rather than merely to codify emotional distinctions relating to personal experience.
This chapter considers whether anything distinctive remains of equity today that would allow it to be separately identified and would justify its continued recognition. In particular, the chapter analyses and marshals the views on these points taken in the other chapters in the book, and concludes that a distinctive equity is harder to define and to justify than several of the other contributions to the collection apparently suggest.
A definition of a property P is impredicative if it quantifies over a domain to which P belongs. Due to influential arguments by Ramsey and Gödel, impredicative mathematics is often thought to possess special metaphysical commitments. The reason is that an impredicative definition of a property P does not have its intended meaning unless P exists, suggesting that the existence of P cannot depend on its explicit definition. Carnap (1937 , p. 164) argues, however, that accepting impredicative definitions amounts to choosing a “form of language” and is free from metaphysical implications. This article explains this view in its historical context. I discuss the development of Carnap’s thought on the foundations of mathematics from the mid-1920s to the mid-1930s, concluding with an account of Carnap’s (1937 ) non-Platonistic defense of impredicativity. This discussion is also important for understanding Carnap’s influential views on ontology more generally, since Carnap’s (1937 ) view, according to which accepting impredicative definitions amounts to choosing a “form of language”, is an early precursor of the view that Carnap presents in “Empiricism, Semantics and Ontology” (1956 ), according to which referring to abstract entities amounts to accepting a “linguistic framework”.
In the agenda-setting process, prior to the decision-making process, there is a predecisional process whereby some issues are systematically blocked by powerful actors from being placed on the formal agenda. These issues are termed “nondecisions”. This article argues that the predecisional process exists not only at the issue level but also at the level of problem definitions. Because of the empirical challenge of studying problem definitions that are not on the formal agenda, the article suggests examining problem definitions that were on the formal agenda and then disappeared from it. Such problem definitions can be termed nondecisions when their disappearance is due to latent power mechanisms, such as anticipated reactions or information control. The article tests these arguments using two American policy cases: prescription drug prices and child care. In so doing, it sheds light on the predecisional process and expands our understanding of the politics of problem definitions.
This chapter provides an introduction to the book by providing a basic understanding of suicidal behavior. It first provides the reader a general knowledge of the epidemiological, clinical, and behavioral presentations of suicidal behaviors. In many situations, acts of nonfatal suicidal behavior will precede lethal suicidal behavior, and a suicidal process with clear implications for prevention is commonly found. The multiple causes of suicidal behaviors will be discussed, and it will become clear that each suicide results from a complex convergence of many possible sociocultural and neurobiological (e.g. genetic) factors. In spite of the unique characteristics of each suicide in terms of personal features and social circumstances, many such suicides can be understood as the consequence of an interaction between stressors and a specific vulnerability to suicidal behavior. Stressors may include problems in relational, professional, or financial areas, or consequences of psychiatric disorders such as depression that may precipitate suicidal behavior in vulnerable individuals. It is particularly with regard to this vulnerability that neuroscience studies have contributed substantially to our insights, and thus provide opportunities for prevention and treatment.
In [G. Curi, On Tarski’s fixed point theorem. Proc. Amer. Math. Soc., 143 (2015), pp. 4439–4455], a notion of abstract inductive definition is formulated to extend Aczel’s theory of inductive definitions to the setting of complete lattices. In this article, after discussing a further extension of the theory to structures of much larger size than complete lattices, as the class of all sets or the class of ordinals, a similar generalization is carried out for the theory of co-inductive definitions on a set. As a corollary, a constructive version of the general form of Tarski’s fixed point theorem is derived.
Goal-setting is fundamental to organisational management, yet not every manager knows how to do it well. A narrative literature review was done to explore current knowledge of definitions and classifications of goals, and principles of goal-setting in the healthcare sector. Online databases generated 65 relevant articles. Additional literature sources were snowballed from referenced articles, and textbooks. Most academic authors define ‘goal’ synonymously as ‘aim’ or ‘objective’, but there is evidence of hermeneutical confusion in general literature. Goal classifications are diverse, differing according to their contextual, structural, functional, and temporal characteristics. Many authors agree that goal-setting is problem-based, change-oriented, and can effectively motivate attainment if the goal statement is formulated with a specific and challenging or SMART framework. However, recent authors report varying definitions for SMART, and evidence of past studies that empirically examined the nature and efficacy of frameworks currently used for formulating goal statements for health programmes are lacking.
Clinical trials in psychiatry inherit methods for design and statistical analysis from evidence-based medicine. However, trials in other clinical disciplines benefit from a more specific relationship between instruments that measure disease state (e.g. biomarkers, clinical signs), the underlying pathology and diagnosis such that primary outcomes can be readily defined. Trials in psychiatry use diagnosis (i.e. a categorical label for a syndrome) as a proxy for the underlying disorder, and outcomes are defined, for example, as a percentage change in a univariate total score on some clinical instrument. We label this approach to defining outcomes weak aggregation of disease state. Univariate measures are necessary, because statistical methodology is both tractable and well-developed for scalar outcomes, but we show that weak aggregate approaches do not capture disease state sufficiently, potentially leading to loss of information about response to intervention. We demonstrate how multivariate disease state can be captured using geometric concepts of spaces defined over routine clinical instruments, and show how clinically meaningful disease states (e.g. representing different profiles of symptoms, recovery or remission) can be defined as prototypes (geometric locations) in these spaces. Then, we show how to derive univariate (scalar) measures, which capture patient's relationships to these prototypes and argue these represent strong aggregates of disease state that may be a better basis for outcome measures. We demonstrate our proposal using a large publically available dataset. We conclude by discussing the impact of strong aggregates for analyses in traditional and novel trial designs.
DNA ancestry testing may seem frivolous, but it points to two crucial questions: First, what is the relationship, if any, between biology and race? Second, how much and why do people prefer clear, singular racial identities over blurred, mixed racial self-understandings, or the reverse? We posit that individuals of different racial or ethnic backgrounds will have different levels of support for this new technology. In particular, despite the history of harm caused by the biologization of race, we theorize that African Americans will be receptive to the use of DNA ancestry testing because conventional genealogical searches for ancestral roots are mostly unavailable to them. This “broken chain” theory leads to two hypotheses, of disproportionately high Black interest in DNA ancestry testing—thus an implicit acceptance of a link between biology and race—and high acceptance among Blacks of multiple heritages despite a preference for evidence of roots in Africa.
To test these hypotheses, we analyze two databases of U.S. newspaper articles, one with almost 6,000 items and a second with 700. We also analyze two new public opinion surveys of nationally representative samples of adult Americans. Most of the evidence comes from the second survey, which uses vignettes to obtain views about varied results of DNA ancestry testing. We find that the media increasingly report on the links between genetic inheritance and race, and emphasize singular racial ancestry more than multiple heritages. The surveys show, consistent with our theory, that Blacks (and Hispanics, to some degree) are especially receptive to DNA ancestry testing, and are pleased with not only a finding of group singularity but also a finding of multiple points of origin. Qualitative readings of media reports illuminate some of the reasons behind these survey findings. We conclude with a brief discussion of the broader importance of DNA ancestry testing.
The ‘rule of law’ is a concept at the very heart of the United Nations (UN) mission declared its Secretary-General, Kofi Annan. What does the concept mean internationally? The paper considers its role in international adjudication; in the UN more generally; in terms of the acceptances of the compulsory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice (ICJ); the difference between thick and thin definitions of the concept; equality before the law; the requirement of clarity and certainty by reference to interpretation of treaties and maritime delimitation; compliance by Governments with international law; and the peaceful settlement of international disputes; and concludes with the importance of personal qualities and professional qualities.
the statement in the title is a theorem of B. Poonen (2009). He uses a one-parameter family of varieties together with a theorem of Coray, Sansuc and one of the authors (1980), on the Brauer–Manin obstruction for rational points on these varieties. For
any prime number, A. Várilly-Alvarado and B. Viray (2012) considered analogous families of varieties. Replacing this family by its
th symmetric power, we prove the statement in the title using a theorem on the Brauer–Manin obstruction for rational points on such symmetric powers. The latter theorem is based on work of one of the authors with Swinnerton-Dyer (1994) and with Skorobogatov and Swinnerton-Dyer (1998), work generalising results of Salberger (1988).
The consensus view in the literature is that, according to Kant, definitions in philosophy are impossible. While this is true prior to the advent of transcendental philosophy, I argue that with Kant’s Copernican Turn definitions of some philosophical concepts, the categories become possible. Along the way I discuss issues like why Kant introduces the ‘Analytic of Concepts’ as an analysis of the understanding, how this faculty, as the faculty for judging, provides the principle for the complete exhibition of the categories, how the pure categories relate to the schematized categories, and how the latter can be used on empirical objects.
In the increasingly complex conjunction of law and religion, one of the most crucial questions concerns the privileged place of religion among other convictional positions which are protected under Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights. This article argues the need for a trans-disciplinary approach to the question of definitions, importing insights from philosophy, sociology of law and neo-pragmatism. The aim is to elucidate the view that defining is both an art (in the discursive construction of its object) and a form of politics (as a regulative technology, through which the actual flux and complexity of human reality is brought under control). The question of what religion is (the ontological question) should be acknowledged as a jurisprudential red herring.
Definitions are social constructions rather than objective descriptions. They set clear boundaries for what is considered normal in a situation. Common words in organizations, like effectiveness or success, carry different meaningss in different contexts. In this paper, we evaluate the Delphi Technique as a method for explicating context-specific definitions and illustrate its use in formulating a context-specific definition of ‘an effective health care team’. Eight multi-disciplinary organization members participated in the study and reached consensus on characteristics assigned to team effectiveness in three rounds. The final definition implies the influence of organizational values, underscoring the importance of context specificity in organization studies.