Bargaining

Bargaining is the art of purchasing something at a lower than the market price. Many are times when people go to purchase items in the market, only to find that the seller has increased the marked price and they want us to pay more. I know you are thinking that this is not a big deal. However, think of the amount of cash that you can save after bargaining. In order to make look better and exciting, think of yourself as a buyer who needs to buy a car that is marked at a price of $900,000. There is a possibility for you to actually buy it for $500,000 if you know to bargain.

In order to bargain effectively, you have to do some window shopping to know what the locals and other people pay for the item. It should be noted that not all situations encourage negotiations. After conducting such research, determine the worthiness of the item and the amount you are willing to spend. This method is very crucial because there are situations when vendors would triple their first price so that you can feel that you have achieved if you purchased at half price.

Once you have decided the worth of the item, carry your cash in hand to avoid a situation where you show a lot of cash to the vendor and pay less. Once the vendor tells you their starting price, do not show any interest in the item and do not act surprised. Ask them for their last price. Once they have told a higher value again, name your price below the actual worth of the item. For example, if the car you wanted to buy is worth $500,000 you can quote your price at $300,000. This price should be about 30% 0r 25% lower than the actual price. In order to be more persuasive, get a friend to work with you in convincing the vendor. If the vendor does not lower their rice to the normal value, then do not be afraid to walk away and buy it somewhere else. Avid taking the bait when the seller announces their final offer. However, when the seller gets to a favorable price according to your budget, it’s time to stop and make payment. This action saves you a lot of cash. The last tip, always make sure that you have enough time because bargaining requires a lot of it. Good luck with your next purchase.

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Histone H3 modifications of Cancer/Testis Antigens in the colorectal cancer cell lines

RESULTS

Histone H3 modifications of Cancer/Testis Antigens in the colorectal cancer cell lines

As evident in Figure 1 below, the cancer/Testis Antigens are epigenetically modified through the processes of Total histone 3 modification, H3K4 tri methylation and H3K9 Acetylation. The expression of CTAs is regulated and controlled through DNA methylation at the promoter level. The three cell lines under study were therefore observed that sub toxic dose was used to express CTAs.Additionally, the CRC cell lines did not equally respond to the Demethylating DNA drug. There was significant increase in the HTB-39 and HTB-37 cell lines and other several Cancer/Testis genes de novo. Most importantly, the modifications of Histone H3 results to expression of Cancer/Testis Antigens in the colorectal cancer cell lines.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Total histone 3
  • H3K4 tri methylation
  • H3K9 Acetylation

Expression of CTAs in Colon Cancer Cell Lines.

A panel of the CTA individuals that express colon cancer in this study included  MAGEA1, A2, and A3; OIP5; PLAC1; CAGE; SSX4; FBXO39; NY-ESO-1; and HAGE.The expression of these Cancer/Testis Antigens in the adenocarcinoma cell lines of colon cancer such as CL-188, HTB39, and HTB-37.In this sense, HTB39 and HTB-37 were of a male origin while CL-188 was female’s. Additionally, isolation of HTB-37 was from primary tumours while HTB-39 were from site of metastatis.Most importantly, fold difference was used to measure Cancer/Testis expression and this was in comparison to the normal colon.Notably,there was CTAs variability in the cell lines tested. The highest CTA-expressing cell line is CL-188 as revealed by RQ-PCR that gave 50% of the Cancer/Testis Antigens were overexpressed. In addition to this, HTB-39 cell line came second and showed 38% of the overexpressed CTAs.Lastly, HTB37 gave the least percentage of 33% of the overexpressed Cancer/Testis Antigens.

Table 1: Knockdown Tex19 by siRNA7 using RQ- PCR

              

PCR Products Knockdown TEX19

by siRNA7

effects

              PCR Products Gel Images

 

 

 

 

TEX19 Knockdown  
     
OCT4 No effects  
     
RAD51 Knockdown  
     
KLF4      Reduction  
     
PLK1 No effects  
     
KRAS No effects  
     
TGFB1 No effects  
     
DKK1 No effects  
     
WT1 No effects  
     
SOX2 No effects  
     
SEPT12 Slight intensity  
     
ABL1 No effects  
     
MYC No effects  
     
LRIG1 No effects  
     
PLOE-3 No effects  
     

Expression of CTAs in Clinical Samples.

The samples collected from normal colonic mucosa that acted as the control and tissues with tumour. The samples of RNA from cancerous and normal tissues were reverse transcribed. Assessment of Cancer/Testis Antigens expression were made possible by real-time PCR and 𝛽- actin and 𝛽-microglobulin expression played a significant role in expression as endogenous controls. The Wilcoxon signed-rank test therefore gave 33% of the tested Cancer/Testis Antigens which were overexpressed significantly (𝑝 < 0.05) in the tumour tissue in comparison to the normal cells. Statistical analysis allowed cancer progression and CTA overexpression according to a system known as Dukes staging. Additionally, correlation test of the Spearman rank shoed that disease progression and Absolute expression of the CTAs that were overexpressed were significantly positive (𝑝 < 0.05).

 

 

Cancer/Testis Antigens (CTA)

Cancer/Testis Antigens (CTA)

Cancer/Testis Antigens identified several proteins expressed by germ cells, tumors and trophoblasts and the apparent of the genes expressed present in the germline in cancerous cells and range of tumors. However, CTAs normally expressed in the restricted in ESCs and the germline in the testis. CTAs antigens are majorly expressed during the spermatogenesis process even though their role are not yet identified (Cheng, Wong & Cheng 2011). The findings in this research classifies the large group of the germline genes as the Cancer/testis genes. These genes play a vital role in encoding the proteins that are normal in the testis of healthy adults known as the Cancer/testis antigens. Nonetheless, these antigens can also be found in the various cancer types of a wider range. Currently, little is known about the functions of these antigens in the testis but most of the evidence supports the transition from soma-germline cells. For instance, processes include invasiveness and cellular mitotic fidelity regulation (Srivastava et al 2016). Most importantly, the findings discussed above give newer avenues for the hindrance of oncogenic Cancer/testis antigens through therapeutics (Fratta et al 2011).

Testis Expressed 19 (TEX19) as a marker of pluripotency

This dissertation illustrates that TEX19 is a gene that is specific to mammals in which the rodents have a pair of paralogues while the humans have only a single gene (Macclennan et al 2017). Chromosome 11 is the location of both Tex19.1 and Tex19.2 of the mice while the humans have their TEX19 located in the chromosome 17. The human TEX19 is similar to the TEX19.1 of the rodents and has expressions that are specific in the embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and the germline tissues of the testes. Expression of TEX19 in humans is common in the testis and placental cells of the adults.

 TEX19 in the cancer cells

TEX19 is cancer/testis (CT) gene and its first detection in the ovary and testis was found out as a murine orthologue.TEX19, therefore, manifests in the human testis and also in the mouse and human embryonic stem cells. TEX19 has recently been identified that is vital in the expression of transposable elements regulation (McFarlane and Wakeman 2017). Transposable elements are sequences of DNA are found within the genome and they change their position, therefore, resulting to chromosome rearrangements, disruption of gene and deleterious mutations that may lead to cancer. Even though the TEX19 is found in the normal human spermatogonial, this is also found in the cancer tissues in a wide range. Notably, it is a shuttling protein between the cytoplasm and nucleus cancer cells. Additionally, TEX19 suppresses quiescent-like state and enables both in vitro and in vivo proliferation in colorectal cancer cells (McFarlane and Wakeman 2017). Studies indicate TEX19 depletion the cells defect in the S-phase in the cell cycle specifically during conditions of TEX19 knockdown which also indicating that TEX19 is required for cancer cells self/renewal and proliferation. However, TEX19 depletion results in subsets of the genes expression alteration. In this sense, the alterations are linked to the regulation and proliferation of cell cycle (McFarlane and Wakeman 2017).

Histone H3 modification in normal cells

Histone H3 is the majorly modified histone which undergone post-translational modifications are known as marks and its role in gene expression regulation is to organize active regions of the genome of the chromatin (Swammle et al 2016). In addition to this, the heterochromatin regions that are inactive in nature whereby DNA compaction is increased and is made less accessible for the transcription process. Histone H3 modifications predict chromatin type (Euchromatin and Heterochromatin), distinguishes the elements that are functional to a genome enhancers, and promoters and also categorizes the outlined elements into the repressed and active states.

Histone H3 modification cancer cells

The research illustrate the epigenetic changes of Total Histone H3,H3K9 acetylation and H3K4 Tri-methylation.H3 Histone being the most modified type of Histone implicated that repression and activation of DNA during transcription on the basis of the methylation site (Yang et al 2015).In regard to this, H3k4 is majorly found in the gene promoters and is the activation marks. Histone 3 acetylation is therefore associated with the opening of chromatin that enhances the transcription process.H3K9 is associated with the promoters and enhancers that initiate activation of genes.

 Histone methylation​​

H3 methylation of Lysine is implicated in both repression and transcriptional activation on the basis of the methylation site while promotion of transcriptional activation is made possible by the arginine methylation as discussed in this research. Lysines can either be tri-, di-, and mono-methylated therefore giving diversity in the functions to each methylation site. For example, both mono- or tri-methylation of K4 (H3K4me1 and H3K4me3) are the marks that are active but the transcriptional enhancers have H3K4me1 (Messier et al 2016). H3K4me3 is majorly found within the site of the gene promoters (Judes et al 2016). Most importantly, Tri-methylation of K9 on H3 histone serves as a signal for repression activity. Conversely, H3K9me3 offers a signal that is a permanent signal for the formation of heterochromatin chromosomal regions in line with the structures that are repetitive. Methylation of DNA, therefore, leads to silencing of the gene expression that leads to catalysis by DNA methyltransferases. In most cases, the CpG islands majorly become demethylated in the cancer cells. Cancer/testis genes are therefore activated through hypomethylation.

Histone acetylation

This characteristic is often associated with the chromatin structure that is open. In this sense, the transcription factors are made accessible and gene expression is consequently accelerated. Majorly, acetylation of histone largely targets the promoter regions within the cell lines. For instance, acetylation of K27 and K9 on the H3 Histones closely associated with the promoters and enhancers of the genes that are active. Too important to note is that the lowest levels of acetylation have an unidentified function and are found throughout the genes that are transcribed (Su, Wellen & Rabinowitz 2016). Most importantly, the enzymes that are responsible for erasing and writing the histone tails acetylation are the deacetylases and Histones acetyltransferases (Zanhow et al 2016).

Testis-Specific Histone Variant H3t Gene

Testis histone tH3 plays a significant role in spermatogenesis and majorly results to azoospermia. The expression of tH3 is important in the differentiation of spermatogonial but in most cases gets lost. However, the stem cells are committed to undergo chromatin and epigenetic rearrangements. Consequently, the genomic structures ensure stability of H3t variant gene. The reports suggest that modifications of histones Ht3 play critical role in epigenetic gene regulation and majorly affects the nucleosome structure (Maehara et al 2015).

The variants histones, therefore, play a significant role in differentiating nucleosomes and are the key regulators of the function and structure of the chromatin. In this sense, the studies on proteomics are valuable histone-variants sources. In particular, Histone H3 variants such as the testis-specific variants are majorly found in the somatic mammalian cells.

RAD51 genes

This is a protein that is found in the pathway of combinational DNA repair that plays a critical role in DNA repair. Notably, this is a critical step for the mitotic recombination and is the major strand-transferase. This gene contributes to instability in the genomics consequently leading to the development of a tumor (Fratta et al 2011).In this sense, the genomic instability slows the growth of the cells. Sometimes, RAD51 in many tumors is overexpressed and therefore the complementing ability of the increased levels of this gene results in limiting of the genomic instability during the progression of cancer. Most importantly, the wild-type p53 is majorly seen to repress the expression of RAD51

Krüppel-like factor 4 (KLF4) genes

Krüppel-like factor 4 is majorly expressed in the tissues of humans such as the skin and the intestine and serves a critical role in the physiologic processes such as maintenance of homeostasis that is normal to tissues, differentiation, and development. Notably, this factor is a transcriptional factor that is bi-functional and can either repress or activate transcription while utilizing various mechanisms depending on the target gene (Fadous-Khalife et al 2016). Additionally, Krüppel-like factor 4 gene functions as a tumor suppressor or oncogene depending on the cancer type that is involved (Lin et al 2016). Together with three other transcriptional factors, this gene can reprogram the fibroblasts through differentiation into the state where it looks like the embryonic stem cells.

KLF4 a as a tumor suppressor and as an oncogene

Majorly, expression of KLF4 gene is downregulated by both losses of heterozygosity and hypermethylation in the human colorectal cancer as cited by Filarksy et al (2016). However, no evidence has been found to correlate the tumor staging and downregulation of the patients with metastatic cancer. This, therefore, suggests that an earlier detectable event could be the loss of Krüppel-like factor 4 gene. In the mice studies, KLF4 examination of colorectal cancer in the mouse models have yielded the same results as cited by Sun et al (2015). However, the colon carcinoma cell lines in humans have a good number of point mutations that have been found within the Krüppel-like factor 4 gene. Majorly, one mutation has an effect on the activation of p21Cip1/WAF1 in NIH3T3 cells. Notably, in the HCT116 colorectal carcinoma cell line, prevention of the amplification of centrosome after the irradiation from gamma rays is made possible by the KLF4 gene. In addition to this, chromosomal instability is influenced by the loss of this factor. To explain this, the expression of ornithine decarboxylase proto-oncogene is repressed by KLF4 that takes part in the transformation of NIH3T3 cells. This, therefore, outlines Krüppel-like factor 4 serves as a tumor repressor.

As an oncogene, Krüppel-like factor 4 gene overrides RasV12   through the induced transformation and senescence in the fibroblasts. The studies outlined that overexpression of KLF4 gene resulted in the arrest of the cell cycle (Xie et al 2018). However, the addition of RasV12 led to p21Cip1/WAF1 inhibition thus allowing repression of p53 by KLF4. Notably, upon repression of p53, apoptosis is blocked and this leads to transformation.

Sw480 colon cancer

According to Bundscherer et al (2017), a unique feature of colon cancer cell lines (SW480) is that they are important in checking the colon carcinoma progression. The cells of SW480 migrate faster across the HMEC monolayers due to its high ability to come up with metastasis and its locomotive ability. Notably, the overexpression of HSP27 correlates with the unique human colorectal cancer cells behavior on the expression of Cx43. These genes are therefore released by SW480 that play a vital role in the phosphorylation of the endothelial cells. Activation of the Cx43 by SW480, therefore, is important in illustrating the tumor cells heterogeneity (Kuchta-Noctor et al 2016).

Method

 Cell Lines

The Human colon cancer cell lines which were obtained from ATCC were used in the experiment .Notably, the 1640 Eagle’s Minimum Essential Medium (EMEM) which was supplemented with 10 𝜇g/mL streptomycin, 100 IU/mL penicillin and 50 𝜇g/mL neomycin were used to culture the selected cells. Most importantly, the fetal bovine serum which in 10% heat inactivated is important in culturing of colorectal cancer cell lines. Additionally, the conditions that were necessary for incubation of these cells were: change of medium after every 48 hours, 37∘ C Hummified atmosphere, 5% Co2 and the initial cell density of 2.5 × 104 cells/flask.

RNA Isolation

The storage of tissues was done -80∘ C in RNAlater Solution for the purpose of desfrostation.The residual RNAlater was thereafter removed through rinsing the tissues in 1 minute with PBS biuffer.Homogenization of the samples was done with 600mL RLT buffer using the Ultra-Turrax T-10 basic dispersing tool in a period of 5 minutes at 30,000 rpm/it.Additionally, RNeasy Fibrous Tissue Mini Kit  was used to extract the total RNA.The purity and concentration of RNA were detected by spectrophotometer through measuring absorbance. The next protocol involved reverse transcribing every RNA sample into the Cdna using the Revert Aid First Strand cDNA Synthesis

siRNA transfection

TEX19 siRNA A (5′-AGGA TTCACCATAGTCTCTTA-3′) and B (5′-TTC AACATGGAGATCAGCTAA-3′) were used in this study alongside the control that was negative.HiPerFect was therefore used to carry out siRNA transfection together with following the instruction from the manufacturer. Notably, 6 μl of HiPerFect together with100 μl of cell medium was mixed with 150 ng of siRNA.Incubation for 15 minutes at room temperature of the mixture was thereafter done to allow formation of the complexes of transfection and this was added to the cells dropwise. This experiment was verified by western blotting and Reverse-Transcriptase-qPCR.

Real-Time Quantitative Reverse Transcription PCR (RQPCR)

Real-time RT-PCR was used in the MRNA levels quantitative assessment on the ABI 7500 Fast instrument with Power SYBR Green PCR Master Mix reagent. The conditions were as outlined: 60∘ C (1 min), 40 cycles at 95∘ C (15 sec) and 95∘ C (15 sec).In this sense, only one product of PCR was amplified under the above conditions according to analysis of melting points.Notably,the endogenous 𝛽-2 microglobulin control and 𝛽-actin were used as the calibrators and the quantity of the target was therefore normalized by this. This was then calculated as fold different prior processing through statistical analysis.

 Statistical Analysis

The Wilcoxon signed-rank test in the CTA expression was used to compare samples from normal colonic mucosa and colon cancer. These data was thereafter analysed as cancer tissue relative expression to normal tissue and the absolute cancer tissue expression in the selected samples and calculated as the ratios. 𝑝 < 0.05 was therefore considered to be statistically significant.

 

 

SUSTAINABLE MARKETING: ROTHMANS, BENSON & HEDGES INC.

Task 1: Company Background

Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. is a Canadian firm that manufactures and distributes tobacco products. It was founded in 1873 by William hedges and Benson Richard in London. The firm opened its branches in Canada and United States in the 1900s and the American branch broke away from the parent company in 1928 when it was purchased by Philip Morris. The firm is in the tobacco industry and it is headquartered in North York in Ontario Canada. Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. was founded when the Canadian units of Benson & Hedges merged with Rothmans International which is owned by Philip Morris. The company is considered as one of the world’s leading tobacco firms with six of the fifteen international brands including the global number one cigarette brand and a variety of other tobacco products. The Philip Morris International has employed a diverse workforce of more than eighty thousand employees working across the globe engaged in the selling of its products in more than one eighty markets. Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. is an affiliate of the Philip Morris International with almost eight hundred employees working in sales offices across Canada, its corporate offices in Toronto and its manufacturing facilities in Quebec, Ontario, and Brampton.

There are various cigarette brands controlled or owned by Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. and they include Craven which is part of the firm’s premium brand strategy and it is mainly meant for the Canadian market. Other brands include Davidoff, Philip Morris, Next, Accord, Mark Ten, Canadian Classics, Belmont, Belvedere, Number 7, Rothmans and Benson & Hedges which is the company’s flagship brand alongside the Rothmans. The firm’s brand portfolio comprises of Number 7, Accord, Mark Ten and the Canadian Classic whereas its value portfolio. Alongside the cigarette products the company also offers diverse roll-your-own and fine cut products (Paschalidou, Tsatiris, and Kitikidou, 2016).

The chart below is an overview of the firm’s supply chain through to end consumer

(Yakovleva, Sarkis, and Sloan, 2012)

 

Task 2: Sustainable Marketing in Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc.

Sustainable marketing is a term a term used to refer to an aspect of the extensive field of sustainable community development which is defined by Brundtland commission of the world’s commissions as a development that ensures that the needs of the present generations are met without compromising the needs of the future consumers. It is essential that a marketer in the twenty-first century must concentrate on the social and environmental issues alongside the commercial aspect. Thus, the concept of sustainability entails the maintenance of a balanced approach to human health, environment and better business management, meaning that a marketer must ensure that renewable resources are used instead of depleting resources enabling reduction of hazardous and polluting wastes. It is the moral duty of the corporate world to make sure those natural resources is used and that new resources are innovatively explored with sustainable options.

Firms like Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. are facing emerging competitive business environment from its rivals due to globalization and technological advancement demanding that new and innovative marketing concepts, new types of corporation and new business models. As firms focus on establishing new marketing strategies for its products they tend to ignore environmental and social factors which can be used to gain a competitive advantage. Thus, the concept of sustainable marketing is critical in the success of twenty-first-century organizations and is linked to the ability to interpret the consumers’ social expectations entailing an integrated system including the social, economic and environmental factors. Nonetheless, many organizations fail to implement environmental management with utmost diligence highlighted by their failure to include environmental factors in their strategic plans. For example, the firm’s financial manager may argue that integration of the firm’s investment into the sustainable factors may be costly and tend to give less priority to them while prioritizing on the commercial and profit matters.

The concept of sustainable marketing is critical in firms like Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. particularly considering that it operates in the tobacco industry which is largely perceived to negatively impact on the environment. There are diverse negative impacts linked to all aspects of cigarette right from the products first phase of the life cycle to the final stage. For example, in the raw material stage clearing of land as well as deforestation often takes place to create land for tobacco plantations. About thirty percent of the greenhouse gases get into the atmosphere annually as a result of the effects of deforestation. For example, in Tanzania, about sixty thousand hectares are cleared each year to create space for growing and curing of tobacco (Lii, Wu & Ding, 2013).

In addition, use of fertilizes and Agrochemicals in tobacco plantations is linked to long-lasting damage to land. Also, a large amount of water is used when growing tobacco despite that it’s a precious commodity in African countries that mainly engage in the tobacco growing. The manufacturing and processing phases cause pollution, which is the bi-product of the machines used. The use of seed flax essential in the creation of paper and wood pulp to produce the filter adds to the negative impact to the environment (Legrand, Chen, and Sloan, 2013).

It is critical that sustainable marketing is implemented by Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. because cigarette production is linked to many environmental issues that require that it makes vital changes in its corporate behaviour including advocating for responsible actions from the consumers, government and all the stakeholders involved. There is a need for the organization to concentrate on issues relating to environmental damage and depletion of resources as opposed to increasing its production, innovation, and consumption. According to the three line theories of sustainability, the economic perspective requires that the main objective of sustainable development must be targeted at achieving an equitable and reasonable distribution of economic well-being through many generations (Karakowsky and Guriel, 2015). The environmental perspective requires that an organization must take into consideration of environmental issues when making its decisions and must incorporate them into its strategic plan to ensure minimal depletion of resources, generation of waste and population growth, ensuring that there is no threat to the biospheric, geospheric and atmospheric processes vital in supporting human life (Jun-ping, 2008).

Sustainable marketing is critical for Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. because cigarettes are associated with many ecological impacts throughout the stages of product use as well as at the end of the lifecycle phase of the product lifecycle. For example, studies have shown that pest of frequent smokers has higher chances of getting cancer due to the negative effects of the second-hand smoke which is considered as a deadly air pollutant (Martin and Schouten, 2012). Also, sustainable marketing is suitable for the organization because cigarettes are responsible for huge amounts of littering negatively impacting on the environment as exemplified by the increased mortality rates of the marine life as a result of swallowing cigarette remnants. In addition, due to the poor disposal evident at the end of life of the life cycle of the product poses serious threats to the environment, particularly due to the increased fire risk exemplified by nearly five thousand cases of fire reported in Australia each year as a result of cigarette butts that are recklessly thrown away (Isalm, 2017).

Task 3: Impacts of Sustainability

Rothmans, Benson & Hedges Inc. has set out needs for each of its leaf suppliers and it comprises of the need for suppliers to participate in the sustainable Tobacco program which is an initiative for the entire industry and it is critical in driving standards in environmental management, agricultural practices and in the human rights and social areas. Furthermore, the manual is essential in the management of sustainability because it addresses issues relating to the use of fertilizers and Agrochemicals such as the list of approved insecticides to be used by farmers. The firm expects its suppliers to provide their risk assessment which is essential in the identification of the levels and the type of agro-chemicals used, ensuring that the leaves supplied are not contaminated by the genetically modified organism. The procedure enables the organization to ascertain the risk level as well as in the determination of the rate by which the supplier must be reviewed to promote compliance (Armstrong, et al., 2014).

Sustainability marketing yields positive results both to the organization and the society at large. For example, despite the fact that cigarette use remains as a contentious issue across the globe attempts by the firm to utilize the web to communicate to its consumers and the public play a vital role in enabling the public to comprehend diverse issues popular in the tobacco industry. For example, it can use its website to communicate to the public regarding its position on various topics of causation, environment, tobacco smoke, addition as well as the disclosure of the ingredient information about its products for public scrutiny and approval. Thus, using the web as the main communication platform ensures that the firm’s position is received by global audience, hence has worldwide ramification (Almas, 2016)

Implementation of sustainability programs such as the use of the web as a communication benefits the global society because the public is able to understand of the impacts of using tobacco, particularly as it relates to addiction; causation and ingredient hence are capable of making wise decisions about tobacco use. Also, the initiative is vital in enabling the organization to develop a company policy that is global relating to prevention of smoking by the youth, advertising and marketing, reduced risk products and product regulation. Thus, such sustainable programs ensure that the society at large benefits by getting informed about the various products offered by the tobacco firms. Furthermore, sustainability programs implemented are beneficial to both the firm and the society because it leads to the development of social responsibility and strategy which is beyond the issues relating to tobacco use, including human rights, child labour and the need to formulate a corporate code of ethics vital in stamping out anti-corporate attacks.

Sustainability efforts benefit the firm through the elimination of costs incurred in litigations against the firm from the perpetration of legislation and regulation stipulated by the countries of operation. Some of the issues that ascertain a responsible corporation include of matters on biotechnology, labour standards, waste management as well as responsible marketing that must not allow double standards (McDaniel, Cadman and Malone, 2016). For example, perpetration of human rights by employing children in tobacco firms amounts to child labour punishable by the law while at the same time damaging the firm’s corporate image and reputation. Some of the corporations issues that are addressed by the implementation of sustainable marketing comprise of trade and commerce, labour standards, environment and agriculture and politics, including campaign finance reforms and healthcare all of which are subject to regulations and legislation. Thus, iterative and systematic sustainability programs are essential in ensuring that the firm does not get reputational or financial harm (Ahmed, 2015)

The strategy of putting sustainability at the core of the firm’s operations exemplified by replacing cigarettes with products that are less risk to smoking means that the social benefits because the negative impacts caused by cigarette smoking are minimized. The efforts benefit the society, considering that it touches on each part of the firm value chain right from the framers to the consumers who use the company’s products across the globe. For example, one of the sustainable initiatives employed by tobacco firms is the promotion of sustainable farming, which is essential in determining the firm’s environmental, economic and social footprint and it is vital in improving the lives of the farmers who depend on farming. Their programs lead to the improved livelihood of the society, creating a reputation for the firm enabling it to reap profits from the positive image that results to satisfied customers and stakeholders.

Task 4: Managing Sustainability

Considering that the organization operates as an affiliate of Philip Morris International which is a global player implies that it must have a worldwide footprint, thus, the need to ensure that reduction of environmental factors is given a priority and it must involve every consumer and stakeholder as well as the entire organization (Hoek, 2015). Philip Morris is the firm’s parent company and it is responsible for the commercialization and development of all the reduced risk products referring to the firm’s products targeted at reducing individual risks and the harm of the population as it regards to consumption of cigarettes. One of the means by which the firm manages its sustainability is the existence of an environmental, health and safety management system which has been implemented for many years (Gilmore, et al., 2015).

One of the ways of ensuring sustainable management is the designing of a Smoke-free future, which is marked as one of the Philip Morris international contributions to the society and this is evidenced by its concerted efforts to ensure that less harmful alternatives are available to its consumers. The firm has achieved this as exemplified by its transformation from a just being a cigarette maker to a leader in the use of smoke free technology and this is attributed to the groundbreaking research that has enabled the development and commercialization of smoke free tobacco products that can be enjoyed by adult smokers and are a preferred choice compared to cigarette smoking. An example is the firm’s flagship product heat-not -burn, IQOS (Fooks and Gilmore, 2013)

Also, the organization manages its sustainability through the introduction and commercialization of the reduced risk product. The journey to replace its cigarettes with reduced risks products was mostly successful in 2017 when a substantial momentum was evident in the product commercialization, development and scientific validation of the various product platforms. Greater success in managing the company sustainability is evident by the ongoing process entailing commercialization of IQOS which has ensured that the product is available in major cities in thirty-eight markets. It is estimated that more than five million adult customers across the globe have opted to stop smoking and choose to use IQOS. The substantial success of the product was evident in Korea and Japan, where data during the fourth quarter reveals that the national share reached 5.5% and 13.9%, respectively regardless of the capacity driven challenges particularly on device sales and heated tobacco consumables (Fo-lin, 2008)

Efforts by Philip Morris International on the management of its sustainability have yielded impressive performance in other countries, evident by the launching of the heated tobacco products in countries like Portugal, Czech Republic, Greece, and Romania. The firm is actively engaged in ensuring the adoption of sustainable adult consumer despite the initial lower levels of awareness coupled with increased limitations on consumer involvement. In order to counter the problem, the firm has put in place strategies aimed at building consumer awareness of the heated tobacco products as well as by raising the commitment by adult consumers to the utilization of the IQOS product as well as enhancement of consumer conversion support (Emery, 2012)

The organization has put in place sustainable initiatives targeted at ensuring that farm workers who are vulnerable to labour rights abuse are protected. Often, the transactional, seasonal and informal nature of the tobacco farming means that farm workers are continuously exposed to various environmental and occupational risks. The organization has continued to formulate programs targeting at addressing the main issues faced by the farmers through gaining an in-depth understanding of the workers, their hiring procedure, working conditions, and compensation. For example, the company has set up an agricultural Labour Practice initiative aimed at improving various labour practices while at the same time continually ensuring that child labour is eliminated in all tobacco farms the firm sources its tobacco leaves. Furthermore, one of the firm’s sustainable programs is by maintaining constant communication with all the farmers entailing their expectations and standards while also setting up the vital resources required for the monitoring of the farming conditions yielding rational solutions to diverse challenging practices. The firm implements its sustainability programs by partnering with the leading nongovernmental organizations in ensuring sustainable supply chain through design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of the effectiveness of the sustainability programs (Casswell, 2013)

The firm depends on a complex yet vital supply chain that must be applied in the future and this explains why there are strategies that have been formulated to ensure that sustainability is promoted right from the crop to the consumer. The nature of the tobacco industry implies that two major supply chains exist and they include the tobacco leaf agricultural and the nonagricultural goods, materials, and services. In both supply chains, the concept of sustainability has been integrated into the strategies aimed at managing the firm’s supply chain through the implementation of risk assessments and detailed supplier initiatives including the environmental criteria. Also, they include other social matters like labour practices and human rights as well as governance issues, including suppliers’ policies, management systems, and procedures.

Tobacco leaf is critical to the success of the firm, thus ensuring there is a sustainable and secure supply chain is a long-term priority. Sustainability is fostered by having traceability that goes on to the farmer and by the existence of a centralized management of the tobacco leaf supply chain. The strategy is vital in enabling there is an efficient, agile and reliable tobacco leaf supply chain capable of meeting the consumer’s demands while at the same time promoting the suitability of the agriculture and rural community (Belz and Peattie, 2012)

The organization expects that the impacts of climate change are going to be felt strongly in the future and it means that the changes in the environment will create problems for the firm as it relates to sourcing of tobacco as well as in the distribution of its products negatively impacting on the landscape and the communities it operates. Thus, the firm recognizes the significance of environmental management which is an ethical thing to do and crucial for sound business, particularly considering the high dependency on natural resources for the products. Thus, the sustainability of the business is dependent on securing access to the natural resources and by being prepared for any changes in the future. The firm will target at addressing both the urgent environmental effects as well as the potential pressures on the corporation in the future and it entail performance management, conducting risk assessments and by increasing the efficient levels of its operations. Environmental challenges require a collaborative approach and flexibility, meaning that the firm seeks to address its sustainability issues on the environment by engaging international organizations and local communities in the areas of their operations (Shelley, Ogedegbe, and Elbel, 2014).

 

 

Bibliography

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Armstrong, G., Adam, S., Denize, S. and Kotler, P., 2014. Principles of marketing. Pearson Australia.

Belz, F.M. and Peattie, K., 2012. Sustainability marketing: A global perspective. Wiley

Casswell, S., 2013. Vested interests in addiction research and policy. Why do we not see the corporate interests of the alcohol industry as clearly as we see those of the tobacco industry?. Addiction108(4), pp.680-685.

Emery, B., 2012. Sustainable marketing. Harlow, UK: Pearson.

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Fooks, G. and Gilmore, A.B., 2013. International trade law, plain packaging and tobacco industry political activity: the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Tobacco control, pp.tobaccocontrol-2012.

Gilmore, A.B., Fooks, G., Drope, J., Bialous, S.A. and Jackson, R.R., 2015. Exposing and addressing tobacco industry conduct in low-income and middle-income countries. The Lancet385(9972), pp.1029-1043.

Hoek, J., 2015. Informed choice and the nanny state: learning from the tobacco industry. Public Health129(8), pp.1038-1045.

Isalm, K., 2017. Competitive marketing strategy of Japan Tobacco International. BRAC University press

Jun-ping, L.I., 2008. Consideration on the Modern Tobacco Agriculture Development [J]. Journal of Hebei Agricultural Sciences9, p.047.

Karakowsky, L. and Guriel, N., 2015. The context of business: Understanding the Canadian business environment. W. Ross MacDonald School Resource Services Library.

Legrand, W., Chen, J.S. and Sloan, P., 2013. Sustainability in the Hospitality Industry 2nd Ed: Principles of Sustainable Operations. Routledge.

Lii, Y.S., Wu, K.W. and Ding, M.C., 2013. Doing good does good? Sustainable marketing of CSR and consumer evaluations. Corporate social responsibility and environmental management20(1), pp.15-28.

Martin, D. and Schouten, J., 2012. Sustainable marketing (Vol. 1). Boston: Prentice Hall.

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dissertation methodology

Research methodology

This research is conducted in such a way that it precisely explains the theory which the study uses. The research presents a study which is conducted through a series of procedures with a main aim of answering the research questions and as per the objectives and hypotheses of the study (Takhar-Lail & Ghorbani, 2015). In the study of the contribution of the different conditioning of physical exercise to the survivors of colorectal patients, the research employs a qualitative approach to establish the basis of facts and figures.

The researcher followed a systematized review as research design to meet the research question, aim and objectives. Formulation of the research objectives and research questions was based on the research paradigm which guides the culture and the views concerning the effectiveness of the research (Takhar-Lail & Ghorbani, 2015). Additionally, literature review is key in the quality research findings since the knowledge extracted from the existing literature is key in the enlightenment of the current ideologies concerning the colorectal cancer survival and effective therapies (Bibbins-Domingo et al., 2016). The systematic review by the researcher helped in the boosting of the general outcome of the research though quality findings and making of valid conclusions based on the standards of research and literature reviews.

To serve the research question, quantitative research studies comprise the sample in this review; accordingly, the review includes randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and other controlled studies as such designs have less bias in the internal validity(O’Brien & Saldanha, 2014). Quantitative studies provide the best evidence of a causal relationship between the intervention and the outcome effect, such as that between exercises and the outcome of improved physical fitness.

The quantitative research studies follow a deductive approach (i.e. they “apply scientific theory to the reality”), which originates from the philosophical paradigm. Quantitative research is an experimental design research, the theoretical perspective used is positivism or/and post-positivism (this review will include quantitative studies that tested the theory that exercise has an impact on the physical fitness of colorectal cancer patients. The ontological assumption in quantitative research is objectivist, or realist, which means that facts have an objective reality. The researcher assumes that there are some realities, i.e. physical exercise, that exist and may affect the physical fitness of individuals with colorectal cancer.

Design and Methods

The research design used in the study is the cross-sectional research study to analyze the impacts of physical exercise in the health of the colorectal cancer. The research seeks to find the actual cause of the differences and deviations of healing process of the colorectal survivors with the application of different levels of physical exertion (Dickerson et al., 2018). The research utilizes qualitative analysis of the results of the different outcomes of the patients who are diagnose d with the colorectal cancers and involve in the monitored physical exercise and the differences in the medical outcome which is cancer chemotherapy. The difference in the response is the basis and key foundation of the research since the focus of the methodology is to determine and effective response criteria which is key in the making of a valid conclusion for standard therapeutic conducts for the people with colorectal carcinoma.

The methods used it he study are both qualitative and quantitative based on the way data is collected and retrieved from the study (O’Brien & Saldanha, 2014). The study involved different data collection techniques to obtain quality information from the affected population who are suffering for the colorectal cancer and those who have been treated with the chemotherapeutic agents. The use of questionnaires, interviews and observation was useful in the study to obtain the information for a perfect analysis of the problem. The methods of data collection fist considered carefully selected sample from the population with a reflection to the research paradigm hence the study group was limited to the patients who have ever been diagnosed with colorectal cancer. A good research methodology must be coherent with the research paradigm for quality of the information which is gained from the research.

On the other hand, in depth literary analysis was used in the research to unveil the hidden information which could be important to the topic of study (O’Brien & Saldanha, 2014). The role of controlled physical exercise in improving the outcome of colorectal therapies cannot be underestimated. The analysis of the existing literature helped a lot in the acquisition of information and providing direction of the study. Additionally, the contribution enhanced quality in the level of the findings since the evidence backup increased and hence the overall quality of the studies.

Methods are the procedures used to collect the data needed to answer the research question or test the hypotheses (Zhang et al., 2014). The research question in this case was formulated using the PICO method, which is designed for questions of therapeutic interventions. The abbreviation stands for population, which in this case is comprised of colorectal cancer patients; intervention, which refers to exercise; the comparative intervention, which is the types of exercise available; and the outcomes, which refer to the physical fitness that has been measured.

Once a research question is formulated based on the PICO method, establishing a clear, systematic search strategy is important to select suitable, relevant, and effective literature. This systematic search strategy will allow identification of the relevant studies and improve the quality of this review.

The selection of studies to include in this systematic review will be done in two stages: The first stage is to carry out an electronic database search based on the PICO method for the proposed question. The second stage is to create a systematic map to look for eligible studies by using inclusion/exclusion criteria.

 First Stage

The first stage of making the choices of incusing or excluding materials into the study involved a number of procedures which include observation as to whether specific quality standards are met. The articles and resources must be related to the colorectal cancer cases, they must address the consequences of physical activity to the general population and make sure that the quality life improvement standards are observed. The articles which do not meet the criteria got excluded while those with the requirement were included t help in deeper research concerning the colorectal cancer.

 

RESEARCH MANAGEMENT

Introduction

Research is definable as the studious inquiry, experimentation observation that aims at discovering and provision of interpretation facts that are attributable to particular object or subject of study. Research is divided into different types namely; the qualitative research, the quantitative research, the pragmatic research, and the advocacy research (Ngulube 2015). These approaches have almost the same basics, and therefore the paper will explore more on the definitions and exploration of different types of strategies, designs, and research paradigms, taking into account principles and practices of each approach. The paper further critically examines each type with illustrating examples and diagrams and then making a conclusion of a preferred approach of design based on the discussion.

Research strategies are definable as the art of planning and directing all the operations in a research process to achieve the specified goal. While the research design is definable as the detailed plan of how an investigation is supposed to take place from data collection, instruments of measurements used and how they are to be employed and the methods of data analysis. Research paradigm has many definitions by various authors. The word has its origins in a Greek word ‘paradigm,’ meaning pattern. According to Humphrey (2013) the paradigm is an integrated cluster of substantive concepts, variables, and problems that are attached to similar methodological approaches. Therefore paradigm to most author it is the collection of beliefs and concepts.

There are different main types of research strategies, and these are observations, interview, documents, files focus groups, and many others. For the purpose of this paper, a few strategies will be discussed.

Interviews

An interview is a common strategy for most of the researchers since listening to the participants provides first-hand information on the subject under study. They are either open-ended or closed-ended question depending on the objective and the research approach. The researcher records the responses of the participants for later and further analysis.

Open-ended Surveys

These are surveys designed to gather information that answerS questions such as why, where and many other qualitative data. For example, unlike the quantitative data, where the numerical data will be engaged, the open-ended surveys will aim at understanding the more reason behind a particular behavior. For example, about the topic of the poverty and racial hate, the survey will provide more idea on why there is too much hatred between the different racial groups and why the upper-class people always mistreat the lower class in every interviewer’s words.

Observation

Observation is considered as the undistorted source of information to most of the researchers since the researcher is capable of observing and making their recording based on the facts. With the direct observation, a social scientist is capable of taking into account the behavior of people’s daily behavior about the specified topic. For example, in the subject of the relationship between the poverty and racial hate, the scientist will mostly focus on the different classes of people regarding wealth; the lower class and the upper class, their behavior towards each other such as in public settings such as parks, hotels (Popescul and Jitaru 2017). These observations will provide information on how a good number of wealthy men will handle most of the lower classes people such as watchmen, waiters, and many others.

Artifacts and Documents

Observation can also be in stationary objects such as artifacts. Mostly the archaeologist and anthropologist who tend to study the lifestyle of past people through the study of where they lived and what they used to employ the strategy.  Similarly, researchers can also get information from the second-hand sources such as going through past a recording that shows history.

Content Analysis

Content analysis is a method used by social scientist to understand and interpret the social life through the use of words and images found in music, arts, documents and any other cultural product. The researchers analyze how the images and the words are put into use coming up with particular inferences (Popescul and Jitaru 2017). For example, the researchers might examine certain words in music, or video perceived to be racist and come up with a conclusive data on the level of racial hate and the reasons for such attitude.

Research Designs and Approaches

These are qualitative and the quantitative. As defined above, research strategies provide a detailed plan of how a specific investigation should be carried out (Haruna et al. 2017). Therefore it is imperative for every researcher before outlining the strategy, and the research objectives should be well established, thereby helps in adopting the right strategy. The quantitative research strategy is definable as the method that aims at revealing a specified audience’s range of characters and the perceptions that drive it about specific topics. The methods of the qualitative researchers are presumed to originate from the social and behavioral sciences that are the sociology, anthropology, and psychology since they mostly use the non-numerical data, which seeks in understanding and interpreting social life.

The primary principle of the quantitative approach is objectivity, to enable researchers to avoid their behavior, attitude to influence the result of the investigation (Hernandez 2015). This is achievable through practical measurement, observation, and study of the hypothesis. For example, in a situation of poverty and racial discrimination, the researcher will be forced to have a numerical value of all those that are poor and are at the same time discriminated on the line of the race.

Qualitative research tends to fit the social scientist because it provides answers to the questions arising from different kinds of human behavior, actions, interactions, for example, the interaction between the poverty and racial hate. The process adopted by qualitative research tends inductive to come up with deductive reasoning since the hypothesis is not usually pre-determined (Popescal & Jitaru 2017). The principles of the qualitative research are the freedom that it offers for participants selection and are free to go beyond the initials response of participants to learn more. The approach tends to involve less number of participants since most of the strategies employed are always labor intensive.

On the other hand, quantitative research methods are definable as the method that aims at providing the level of occurrence of a specific issue regarding numbers and calculations. The technique tends to answer the questions how many and how often unlike in the qualitative that is based on why and how (McCusker 2015). The methods are always based more on the random sampling and structured data collection instruments, and the findings are easy to present, summarize and make a conclusion. The conventional methods used in data collection n include interviews, focus groups, narratives, participants, and observations.

The quantitative research aims at providing detailed information on a particular research topic. Therefore, it is more exploratory, while the quantitative research method aims at providing statistical data on the specified issue making it conclusive. The qualitative research is preferable at early stages of most of the researches while the quantitative is recommended in making conclusions.

Pragmatic Approach

A pragmatic approach is commonly known as the mixed method, which use numerous methodologies to get a result (Sagliocca et al. 2013). The pragmatic researchers tend to recognize that every approach has limitations and using more than one approach help in solving any difficulty met during the process. For example, in a study of poverty and racial discrimination, a large number of people from different races might be an interview, after that, a detailed questionnaire developed to capture both the quantitative and qualitative data.

Advocacy Approach

The advocacy approach is perceived more as a participatory approach by the participants. This approach is more applicable in situations where positive change is presumed to be adopted among a specified subject, who is always referred to as co-researchers (Haruna et al. 2017). Therefore the thoughts, feelings, and views of the subject are very critical. The researcher assumes a neutral position.

 

According to Humphrey (2013), research paradigms are characterized by their ontology, epistemology, and methodology.  Ontology is more concerned with the nature of existence that is a determinant point of all researchers. The epistemology tends to deal more with the nature of the knowledge that brings about the relationship between the already known and the unknown. Ontology and epistemology are always fundamental to the research since they provide the base, and direct the choice of methodologies and methods applied. The methodology is the strategy that justifies the choice of particular techniques used, or to is used in data collection, analysis, and interpretation (Spencer 2015). Therefore the methods of data collections are always varied following the design and objective of a particular research topic.

There are classifications of paradigm these are positivism, interpretive and critical postmodernism. Positivism paradigm is commonly used in exploring the social reality that is based on philosophical ideas, this according to August Comte, a celebrated French philosopher. Comte examined that the only best ways of understanding human being behaviors are through observation that explained most of the cause-effects issues (Ryan 2015). Most of the positivists believe that by applying the natural sciences on the practices of social sciences, it is possible to understand and control the natural world since they are more committed to the neutrality, statistical measurements, quantifiable elements, and observable events that prove the causal-effect law. On the other hand, the interpretive approach is associated with both Max Weber and Alfred Schutz, who presented distinguishing features of the interpretive paradigm (Haruna et al. 2017). The interpretive approach states that reality is complex and is in the form of various layers; and that the social world should be studied through the eyes of the participants without the involvement of the researchers.

At the ontology stage, a reality is assumed to exist driven by the natural laws and mechanisms. Therefore the social reality is to the external individual. Therefore, to every researcher, there is that real existence that is known and the one that is to be understood, these two exist independently. In the epistemology, positivists believe in dualist and objectivist. Objectivism is a critical aspect of any data collection since the knower and the item to know are considered as different entities (Sagliocca et al. 2013). The interpretive ontology tends to hold on relativism, as that reality differs from one person to another leading to the existence of multiple facts that are socially constructed. The epistemology of the interpretivism tends to adhere to subjectivist views, in that both the subjective meanings and interpretation are vital. According to  Ryan (2015), an object is incapable of adequately describing the subject, and the subject is also incapable of describing the object of discussion. On this basis, therefore, the relationship between the knower and the subject under investigation is that of involvement and not a detachment.  Positivist’s methodology focuses mostly on giving explanations on the causes- effect relationship, by using the hypothesis, questionnaires, and experimental strategies. At this point, the researcher seeks the answer through bringing together the dependent and independent variables at the same time controlling all the threats to the validity. The interpretive methodology tends to use different methodologies such as the case studies to make inferences to the subject under investigation, this because the interpretive believe that the social world is understandable only from the standpoint of the individuals who are the participants of the investigations (Saunders and Lewis 2012). Therefore most of the interpretive researchers always start from the participant, through taking into account the biography, gender, social class race, and ethnicity. With such information’s, the interpretive are capable of having a thick description of a situation such as a relationship between poverty and the racial hate.

Methods in positivist focus on the data collection methods to gather numerical data that are tabulated and statically analyzed.  The possible data collection includes participants, observations, documents, and many other numerical sources. Unlike the positivists, the interpretive employ purposeful sampling and select individuals that are proven to be rich in information. For example, the researcher on determining the poverty and racial hate will tend to take only individuals that have suffered racial hate and poverty discrimination to offer more information on their predicament (Spencer 2015). The interpretive researcher will rely more on the qualitative data that are categorized into various such as observations, interviews and, documents, questionnaires and many others. However, the interview is always considered as the preferable method.

The example of that illustrates both the qualitative research method and quantitative research method relating to poverty and racial discrimination mostly between Americans and Africans.  In a qualitative method, the researcher focuses more on the life history, dynamics of the welfare provision, neighborhoods, and organizations in America. From the findings, it was derivable through qualitative research that the daily lives of the low –wage Africans was worse than that of America. Among those interviewed, they tend to face discrimination because of the stigma placed on them by the high-class individuals who always think that they are beggars every time. The previous research also shows that there is a positive attitude in an employed African than unemployed one, thereby boost their interaction ability (Saunders and Lewis 2012). The weakness of the qualitative approach on this topic is that it is unable to provide numerical data on the number of the poor household who are at also mistreated because of their racial background; otherwise, it offers personal experience in detail.

While on the same topic, a quantitative research method will focus on the same dynamics but with more emphasis on the number of households. The data will bring out the number of the households that have been poor and have always been affected by the nature of their race. As much as the quantitative approach provides the numerical data, it is unable to provide clear reasons behind poverty and the discrimination rate among the Americans and Africans.

Conclusion

From the above discussion, it is in conclusion that there is no best approach over the other but about the suggested research on the relationship between poverty and racial discrimination among the Americans and Africans living in America, and then the pragmatic approach is very viable. The approach will mix both the qualitative and quantitative data collection approaches hence will enable me to have full information from the personal views and the numerical number of the affected people. Also, the approach is capable of providing information that is able in helping to solve the problems since it will take into account the feelings of the subjects that are under investigation.

 

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