Artificial Intelligence Project

June 19, 2017

 

 

Intelligent Health Maintenance System

Predictive Health monitoring and Maintenance based on Cloud Computing and IOT Architecture using Machine Learning

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction. 6

Problem Definition: 6

Background: 8

Strategy: 9

Research Objectives: 10

Research Limitations: 11

Chapter 2: Literature Review.. 13

Chapter 3: Research Methodology. 18

Chapter 4: End-To-End Architecture For Enabling Artificial Intelligence Through Stream Analytics  20

Stream Analytics: 23

Machine Learning: 24

The Microsoft Azure Machine Learning Studio: 26

Training And Scoring Models: 28

Heart Disease Prediction: 29

Chapter 5: System Requirements. 34

Functional Requirements: 37

Non-Functional Requirements: 42

Project Issues: 44

Sysml Requirements Diagrams: 47

Diagram 1: Operating Environment: Indoor And Outdoor 47

Diagram 2: Type Of Alarm Depending On The Movement: 48

Use Cases: 49

Business Use Cases: 49

Product Use Cases: 55

Adapt Case: Enhancing Data Analysis And Decision Making For Fall Detection Using Machine Learning Algorithms. 60

Chapter 6: Conclusion And Recommendation. 64

References: 67

Appendices: 80

Appendix 1: 80

Appendix 2: 84

Appendix 3: 85

Ploting Correlation Matrix. 86

Binary Classifier Creation. 86

Model Accuracy Evaluation. 86

 

 

 

Chapter 1: Introduction

Problem Definition:

Ever since the advent of smart devices which can be accompanied with humans in mobile forms and be connected to the internet, medical industry has been dreaming of a comprehensive integrated system through which health can be monitored and diseases can be prevented using the data from health monitoring devices. Human health has been at the mercy of doctors and health practitioners, due to which errors are probable in diagnosis of any medical condition. The capability of cloud computing with its ability to handle big data and web of smart devices can give a way for predictive diagnosis which can possibly eliminate human error in prescribing medicines for diseases and as a preventive mechanism for future health threats.

The modern healthcare facilities generate tremendous amounts of data which is handled through conventional in house e-healthcare systems. However, such systems does not have the capability to integrate and process data streams in the form of big data from many different dimensions and sensory devices distributed in hospital all the way to the patient’s home. Healthcare facilities use the traditional relational database management system (RDBMS), which is limited in its processing power and scope to make sense of big data which requires processing in real time such that appropriate steps can be taken before the problem jumps out of reach. In addition to the stated limitation, as mentioned before the new healthcare system is shifting from hospital-centric or career-centric to patient-centric, where patients are to be monitored periodically throughout the day and they themselves along with medical professionals can be empowered to make best decision by taking in view the processed information.  The volume and speed at which there is a requirement of organising the sensor data to make accurate prediction is unprecedented for traditional RDBMS. The big clusters coming in data streams from patient’s home need to be streamed and analysed in real time with seamless connectivity.

With an increase in the use of Internet-of-Things, the data generated from every patient comes in clusters of big data, which is extremely useful for making health situation and cure related prediction if it can be processed and analysed timely. It is very difficult to make sense of data streams in real-time through manual analysis of health care professionals; hence, highly complex computing algorithms are the only possible methods to abstract and make sense of clusters using historical data and enable machine learning of the system.

The system shall cover all the required technicalities which are appropriate to design a cloud Computing based intelligent health monitoring and prevention system for the management and usage of health care data that will use predictive analytics to assess patient’s health condition and suggest appropriate solutions to both patients and health professionals from remote locations along with suggesting ways to prevent a possible health condition in the future. In recent past many systems have been proposed but they all have been designed without the capability of completely eliminating human involvement in drug prescription and use web of devices to monitor health and diagnose according to trends through machine learning at the same time. In the above stated lines, the system is intended to provide web based user friendly platform to patients in order to empower them to monitor their health condition or symptoms, have a deeper insight into the symptoms through the use of recommendations and analytics enabled by machine learning algorithms; receive health professional validated recommendations and keep track of their health on a visual website.

 

 

Background:

In the coming decades, the ageing of population and the revolution of Internet-of-Things (IoT) are among the megatrends that will reshape the world dramatically (National Information Council 2008). According to the department of Economic and Social Affairs of United Nations (2009), the rise of the persons above 60 have been steady during the recent years, which has incremented to 115 in 2009 from 9% in 1950; which according to the recent trends can go as high as 25% in 2050. The aging population rings bells for the already struggling healthcare systems around the world, which lack the robustness to handle huge influx of patients in the coming years. According to National Bureau of statistics (2011) developing countries such as China are even more disposed to this problem. In addition to the rise in population of elderly the overall population in the developing countries is increasing which is partly because of a higher mortality rate; combined with the increasing vulnerability of human health caused by pollution and other artificial ways of everyday lifestyle, every individual is much more disposed to viruses and disease. The best way to handle this rising problem is to introduce ways that have the capability to encourage preventive measures such that any disease can be prevented. At the same time the healthcare system shall have the capability to reach maximum number of individual and monitor their health to enable a transformed ecosystem for healthcare powered by the modern technologies. The future health care services shall be transformed towards patient centricity than the previous criteria of career centricity. Cloud computing provides the required infrastructure which can make the healthcare system completely patient-centric and transparent with a greater degree of reliability and robustness. The machine learning capabilities of the cloud infrastructure and the integration of Big Data analytics can allow the system to predict trends in the patient’s health and prevent any disease by suggesting the appropriate measures based on reliable accumulated data. Such system can be realized through te interjunction of Cloud computing, Data Science for acquiring, processing and managing data for stakeholders in Healthcare.

The current healthcare system is headed towards home-centricity, targeted for 2030 through hospital centric model which is currently dominant. According to Koop et al. (2008,29): Technology will transform our medical system by bringing technology directly into the home. The enabling technology is in two directions: Cloud computing and internet of things. IoT enables the cyber-physical system controlled by cloud infrastructure which has the capability to remotely process information and deliver it to the smartphones of the patients and healthcare professionals. The system has the capability to integrate devices and applications for communication, sensing, information and networking management, identification, through any media and device, anywhere anytime; morevover, the system can be made fully intelligent through the integration of predictive analytics and for the very first time in the history a system much more capable than human mind dedicated to health monitoring and maintenance can be realized and implemented (European Commission Information Society 2008, 1009).

 

Strategy:

The study is focused on utilizing trans-disciplinary approach to probe into the latest computational infrastructure of Cloud and IoT devices to enable Intelligent Health Maintenance System (IHMS), which can monitor current health condition and potentially prevent health deterioration and disease through use of predictive analytics to prescribe preventive medicine based on big data clusters acquired from web of monitoring devices. The system is aimed at catering the in-house health monitoring of the elderly along with providing a health maintenance system for health conscious individuals by acquiring data such as Blood Pressure, Heart Beat Rhythms, Blood Sugar levels, Body Temperature, Physical Activity, indoor air pollution etc. The trends in data acquired for each individual shall be processed through cloud based predictive analytics algorithms using Software as a Service (SaaS) such as Apache Spark and IBM Watson Service. The user generated data shall be compared with cleansed data in clusters through using historical and present trends (predictive analytics) and the trends in the data shall be matched to predict a health condition. The system shall be artificially intelligent given that it will learn with each data sample and will store greater clusters for matching.

The research study is divided into two major stages: first stage aims at collecting data for constructing framework of the system using literature, online courses (MOOCS), and publications of industry leader. The aim here is to probe the technological advancements in multiple computing and health care domains which can make the system truly intelligent through machine learning. In the second stage, the collected secondary and primary data is used to define requirements of the system along with construction of complete end-to-end architecture of the system. The business case for the system is also constructed. The system archtecture modules of the system include: IoT Hubs, Events Hubs, Stream Analytics, Machine learning, Storage and Networking, Web APIs and Business Community Strategy. Special consideration shall be given for the solution of the following issues: Selection predictive analytics platform for accuracy and efficiency; Data Handling issues; Network system security; Ethical and privacy issues.

Research Objectives:

  • To understand the application of machine learning and predictive analytics in cloud based systems.
  • To investigate the needs and requirements of a comprehensive Intelligent Health Monitoring System (IHMMS) using Secondary (content analysis) data and exploit platforms to enable machine learning.
  • To define the system architecture of IHMS through the use of requirements defined using the collected information.
  • To Investigate and define the solutions to technical problems in acquiring and processing data in real time and using predictive analytics through Cloud computing.
  • To identify and provide solutions of possible challenges and obstacles in the implementation of IHMS on a larger scale for consumer market.

 

 

Research Limitations:

This research will be completed using primary and secondary data. This means that there will be primary data collection for the purposes of this study from online survey. However, the use of primary data does not mean that resources are not required. The study will require one to use and internet connection and subscribe or buy some publications over the internet. While most of the publications being sought are likely to be offered free of charge, some may require subscriptions to get access to their content.

The study also aims to utilize data from online courses which are mostly free but researcher will have to purchase few resources for the course work. The study also aims at developing a prototype of the IHMS, which requires use of cloud services as Platform-as-a-service (PaaS); hence, the researcher will have to subscribe to cloud services which might be very costly.

Due to the limitations pertaining to the hardware implementation and collection of appropriate data for predictive analytics the system cannot be fully tested with real time data acquisition.

The study is aimed at exploiting the most recent trends in the technology and healthcare, however, such an approach has many constraints given that much of the research and development in the field is not openly published and is constantly being updated and new standards are introduced.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 2: Literature Review

Yu et al. (2016) proposed an intelligent system based on cloud computing software as a service approach for handling big data in health care. The focus is on building an efficient platform based on web services in order to simplify the procedures of health monitoring and assessment. The system realized uses big-data analytical approaches to provide reliable recommendations through the comparison of cleansed data with the generated by the user of the system. The repository of cleansed data clusters are acquired by the researchers from the IBM Watson and Apache Spark services. The system provides web based user friendly platform to patients in order to empower them to monitor their health condition or symptoms, have a deeper insight into the symptoms through the use of recommendations and analytics enabled by machine learning algorithms; receive health professional validated recommendations and keep track of their health on a visual website. Yu et al. (2016) provided a one-click solution to all the patients which can potentially solve the problem of inefficient diagnosis and delayed medical attention.

Yamamoto et al. (2014) defined a system through the use of cloud computing to manage big data for connected smart cities. The researchers demonstrated ways to retrieve data from “Scallop4SC”-a smart city platform-of the connected smart houses. The researchers utilized HBase for variety of log data and Hadoop to big-data logs. The study concludes that different data processing and mining methodologies are suitable for different sizes of data acquired.

Jiang et al. (2014) constructed a system to cater the transfer of data for Healthcare big-data systems. They used wearable devices to acquire the data and constructed an intelligent Information Forwarder. They focused on constructing the system for the healthcare of elderly. They provided platforms which allow for centralized analysis of distributed monitoring.

Li et al. (2014) defined a system for sensory data acquired through health monitoring devices and proposed a community based wiki-health as a big data platform. The proposed platform defies a new ontology for data information management which includes ways of analyzing, retrieving, tagging, storing, searching and comparing data acquired from health sensors. The system allows individual users to access health-related knowledge discovery through internet. A similar system was proposed by Kang et al. (2016) which is constructed to cater acquired sensory data of supply chain from Electronic Product Code Information Services (EPCIS) using MOngoDB.

Mohammed et al. (2014) focused on building a mobile application for android platform for healthcare domain, which aims at acquiring the sensory information from connected internet of things and processing the data using cloud computing. The name of their application is “ECG Android App” with an aim to provide users a platform to visualize their current health condition through their Electro Cardiogram (ECG) waves in real time in comparison with historical data. A specific medical cloud is also integrated for the uploading of the user’s data anonymously in order to build repository of cleansed samples. The user data is also uploaded to the personal centralized cloud of the user which can be accessed by medical professionals after permission of the user in order to assess and diagnose their health condition. The researcher presented a comprehensive infrastructure for healthcare industry based on integrating many different technologies: signal processing, communications protocols, IOIO microcontrollers, efficient and secure systems for data sharing, signal processing, central cloud and data base management system. The focus of their study is to construct a comprehensive system architecture and design which can enable the integration of cloud and IoT for healthcare industry. The figure below demonstrates the layered architecture of the proposed patient monitoring system by Mohammed et al. (2014).

Figure 1: Patient monitoring system system architecture including all layers (Mohammed, Thakral, Ocneanu, Jones, Lung, & Adler, 2014)

Song et al. (2012) used android smartphone application and hardware to construct a solution for body monitoring system. They focused to solve the problem of unreliability and limited scope of previously available body monitoring system by utilizing the smartphone technology. The information related to the user’s acquired data can be accessed through the smartphone screen. The researchers integrated multiple technologies in the system design: electrocardiogram acquisition sensor, brainwave capture sensor, temperature detection, smartphone application, and network transmission. They further tested the efficacy of the proposed system in real world cases.

Lee et al. proposed the “Concinnity” system which acquires data from multiple sensors and uses a repository along with workflow system to process and interpret the information. They proposed a cloud platform-as-a-service to manage the sensory data and demonstrated the integrated architecture for the system. They integrated the data input portal where the users of the system can contribute their data to the big data repository. The data that can be uploaded includes lifestyle information, sensory data, well-being etc.

The Health-IoT technologies and services are promising to address the challenges faced by the health care sector. However, literature on the subject shows limited work on the integration of the available technologies to mechanize an automated holistic health care and prevention system for general consumers.

The literature review is providing deep insights into the technological requirements of designing a system that can be truly intelligent and incorporate machine learning. The focus is on the cloud computing elements enabling machine learning capabilities of the system; hence multiple domains have been analyzed, such as predictive analytics, machine learning, big data analytics etc.; using different research instruments. The primary research instrument used is the analysis of articles in peer reviewed journals.

The literature on the subject area shows that there is a need for an intelligent health monitoring and maintenance system which can acquire multiple health related factors through mobile devices and use predictive analytics to suggest preventive medicine along with suggestions for the patient’s decision regarding their healthcare. However, the literature lacks a complete cloud based solution, which can integrate live streams of data acquired through the web of IoT and use Cloud SaaS to for stream analytics and machine learning. Such a system can have unlimited processing power and an ecosystem of patients can allow the system to be much more intuitive than any other system presented in the literature given that this system shall have the capability of expansion by using greater number of measurements to derive a conclusion.

 

Chapter 3: Research Methodology

 

The research study utilizes content analysis and desk based research strategy with an inductive approach by first distilling the appropriate work in the literature and then constructing thresholds to assess the efficacy of the a Cloud Based HealthCare system.

The dependence on literature as major form of data extraction has its pros and cons, when using the content analysis technique; such challenges are identified by Kalenga (2015), which has been considered throughout the study as benchmark to objectify the information. In order to limit the possible sources of anomalies the study inducts triangulation of key findings through primary data collection from online survey (Kratina et al., 2015).

The aim of the method used is to precipitate qualitative information under a theme followed for the analysis. The quality of the published reports is also assessed based on the standards followed in the industry. Bryman and Bell (2015) indicated that the principal aim of cross-sectional survey research designs revolves around the collection of quantifiable data concerning the same research subject with a view of detecting any patterns of association within the secondary data and the triangulation of key findings from multiple sources.

 

 

The research study utilizes content analysis and desk based research strategy with an inductive approach by first distilling the appropriate work in the literature and then constructing thresholds to assess the efficacy of the a IoT and Cloud Based HealthCare system.

The dependence on literature as major form of data extraction has its pros and cons, when using the content analysis technique; such challenges are identified by Kalenga (2015), which has been considered throughout the study as benchmark to objectify the information.

The aim of the method used is to precipitate qualitative information under a theme followed for the analysis. The quality of the published reports is also assessed based on the standards followed in the industry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 4: End-to-End Architecture for enabling Artificial Intelligence through stream analytics

The end to end solution of the system comprises of the five architectural layers as shown and explained in table below. However, our main focus is on the “Real-Time Analytics” Layer, where the machine learning algorithm for the acquired streams of data are implemented on the data coming from the IoT hubs from heart beat monitors and other devices attached to the patients. For the purposes of predictive analytics the acquired data is first cleansed and then compared with historical logs of events recorded from multiple data sources. The algorithm is defined in a way such that the system is self-learning and self-optimizing.

Table 1: Architecture layers used for the system model.

 

The real-time event processing reference architecture is dependent on a number of different Azure PaaS capabilities to support end-to-end analytics scenarios. The following diagram and subsequent sections describe the various stages of the data flow lifecycle within this architecture, as well as the components required to support each of these stages, and the interaction between each of these components. The roles that each of the services illustrated above can support tends to blur across the layer boundaries. For example, SQL Database provides both a storage capability as well as a query engine for returning records to a user. Also, Event Hubs provides storage for a pre-defined period of time. This diagram is intended to illustrate each of the services being mapped to their primary role within this architecture.

 

 

The reference architecture used for the study is selected for building scalable and secure solutions that are device-centric which encapsulates the processing required for conducting predictive analysis and integrating the cloud infrastructure as required by the system proposed. The solution can be implemented on public, hybrid or private cloud as per the requirements of the system. The architecture enables a smooth flow of information between the connected health monitoring devices and line-of-business assets to the cloud infrastructure for the processing, analysis, control and business process integration. Figure 1 provides a high-level conceptual architecture which can be used as a reference model for the study and can be modified to serve specific identified purposes. The architecture is also aimed at catering the distributed nature of sensory instruments through a centralized cloud based processing system. The gateway is used to connect the device which has dedicated processing capabilities; it facilitates bidirectional communication with the back-end system and provides endpoints for the connected devices. The basic backend comprises of components for data collection, business logic, visualization, analytics, device discovery and registration.

 

 

Our main concern for the health monitoring system is to define the analytics layer for the system which shall be capable of streaming the live data and applying machine learning algorithms using third party data sources for enabling the system for artificial intelligence in disease discovery and prevention diagnosis. For this system the most appropriate module for streaming and analysing the data is the Azure Stream Analytics. After streaming the data the system utilizes the cortana studio for the implementation of the machine learning algorithm and the newly structured data is managed and stored using a combination of Azure Blob storage and SQL database.

There are two technologies that support the real-time analytics layer of this event processing reference architecture. Azure Stream Analytics acts as the linchpin of this reference architecture by providing the engine capable of temporal analytics over moving data streams. The second technology in the real-time analytics layer is Azure Machine Learning, which is a predictive analytics service capable of consuming either a single record made up of multiple columns (sometimes referred to in the context of machine learning as “features”) via request / response API, or consuming a file for asynchronous batch scoring. Given the real-time scope of this document, the role of Azure Machine Learning will be based on the request / response method only.

Additionally, Apache Storm is positioned in this diagram as a reference as to where it aligns to Azure Stream Analytics. Each of these platforms support similar event processing scenarios, however there are a number of differences in their supported languages and interoperation capabilities.

The figure below provides the reference architecture on which the system shall be based. The main module of concern for this study is the “Analytics and Machine Learning” component of the data processing, analysis and management section.

Figure 3:  Cloud based IoT solution Reference Architecture.

The technical details of the data acquisition devices will be provided and the embedded systems used as well as the sensing devices will be elaborated.

 

 

Stream Analytics:

Azure Stream Analytics ships with a pre-built adapter for Event Hubs, which significantly reduces the time to market for delivering solutions since developers do not need to develop their own custom adapters for the streaming engine. Additionally, and perhaps more significant for enabling accelerated solution deployment, Azure Stream Analytics provides a SQL-like language that allows database developers with existing SQL skills to transition to this platform very quickly. This language is very similar to T-SQL, which is the primary database language for SQL Server, however it contains a superset of functions that support temporal operations such as applying sliding, hopping or tumbling time windows to the event stream.

Azure Stream Analytics supports two different types of inputs, either stream data or reference data, and two different input data sources, either Event Hubs or files from Blob Storage. Only Blob Storage is supported for consuming reference data into the stream. Event streams can be consumed from either Blob Storage (in which case all events already exist in a file) or from Event Hubs whereby data is arriving in real-time. In the instance that data is being consumed from Blob Storage, the file being referenced must contain a timestamp record in a supported time

format for enabling Stream Analytics to perform temporal analysis. Whilst it is possible to stream

a file without a timestamp field that would not enable temporal queries, the value of the

Solution is somewhat diminished unless there is a specific scenario that requires this

Functionality. The following diagram represents the different data ingestion options for Stream

Analytics.

Machine Learning:

Azure Machine Learning provides a cloud based platform for mining data to identify trends and patterns across large scale information sets. By “learning” from historical events and trends, machine learning can publish a model that can be leveraged for determining predictions in real-time based on incoming event data. Combining the real-time rules based processing capabilities of Azure Stream Analytics with the real-time predictive analytics capabilities of Azure Machine Learning can help businesses rapidly deploy highly scalable data solutions to support complex information challenges.

Machine learning models that have been developed, trained and tested, are deployed as web services that can be called from applications. A request to a model is made asynchronously, either by submitting a single record containing a number of columns, or by submitting a file that contains a number of records to be scored. For the purposes of real-time analytics, the single record request / response method is used for submitting an incoming event to the machine learning model.

One of the considerations for constructing a single record feature set to submit to machine learning models is that the incoming event stream may not contain all of the data required for the model schema. For example, telemetry that is transmitted from equipment may contain data about the performance characteristics, but it will likely not contain all of the attributes of that equipment as it is repetitive and will bloat the data transmission. Equipment attributes, such as age may be highly influential features in a real-time machine learning model and therefore need to be appended to the record prior to calling the model.

The following diagram illustrates how Azure Machine Learning can make use of streaming data to enable real-time prediction.

The diagram above does not make an assumption on which action the application will perform

once the prediction has been received back from the machine learning service. There are a

number of possibilities here, one of which may be that the application calls a notification service

(Azure notifications are beyond the scope of this document) to send an alert to a device. Other

alternatives may include writing the prediction result to a SQL database for consumption into

reporting analytics, or initiating a broader automated workflow.

A single solution may contain multiple models that need to be trained for predicting different

outcomes based on the same or similar input data. Whilst this diagram depicts a single machine

learning model, an actual implementation may comprise multiple models being called from a

single orchestrating application, including scenarios where the response from one model may

result in the triggering of another model request in a sequential manner.

 

The Microsoft Azure Machine Learning Studio:

 

The sample data to test the algorithm is used for the cancer detection system. For the coding and scripting R script is used in the MS Azure Machine Learning Studio.

 

The Appendix 3 shows the complete R script implementation from the start till the end of the process for cancer prediction using cleansed data set for training and testing. The implementation of the system is conducted using the jupyter server. The AzureML package is installed by default on the jupyter server.

First of all the data set is loaded through the data storage layer. In order to make the system intuitive and intelligent the algorithm first trains the system. The clusters acquired with results are splited into the positives and negatives; which are further splited into halves for training and testing purposes. The further identified features of the cancer patients are also added individually into the dataset. The figure below defines the process of splitting and cleaning the data to be used for training and testing.

 

The data samples are then joined with the additional features column to make four independent data sets: Positive training examples, positive test examples, negative training examples, negative test examples. After that the test samples and training samples for negative and positive sets of data are joined.

The final cleansed training data set is then acquired for further analysis. The data is further grouped into bins and columns are selected to execute the following R script for training the model.

# replicate positive examples 93 times

 

dataset <- maml.mapInputPort(1)

 

data.set <- dataset[dataset[,1]==-1,]

pos <- dataset[dataset[,1]==1,]

for (i in 1:93) data.set <- rbind(data.set,pos)

row.names(data.set) <- NULL

 

maml.mapOutputPort(“data.set”)

 

 

 

Two individual data sets are then trained: firstly the dataset with edited metadata and secondly the data set without the editing of meta data.

After that the four data sets as shown in figure below are trained and scored.

Training and scoring models:

 

The models are then trained in four different sections using the “Train Model” module of the Microsoft Azure Machine learning studio. Then the patients IDs are used to test the trained model. The result output is executed using the following R script: Given in the appendix 1.

 

Training and evaluation of regression models is then conducted to check which regression model is most appropriate for the acquired data set. The following four regression models are used to train the data: Decision Forest regression, Boosted Decision tree regression, Poisson Regression, and Neural network regression. The rows for the scores of the models are then added and the following Rscript is used for the execution of the results for declaration of best model to be utilized: Given in Appendix 2.

 

 

 

 

Heart Disease Prediction:

A similar heart disease prediction training model is implemented in the MS Azure Machine Learning studio and is published. The diagram below gives the demonstration of algorithm.

Figure 2: Heart Disease Prediction Alorithm.(Published at: https://gallery.cortanaintelligence.com/Experiment/Intelligent-health-Maintenance-system)

The regulatory and ethical requirements revolve around the data handling procedures deployed in the proposed technological solution. Major stakeholder is the Data Protection Agency, responsible for ensuring the validity of the system in the light of Data Protection Act 1998 (Sophie et al. 2012). The proposed technological solution for the fall detection system deploys sensor nodes for data collection to monitor activity of the patient continuously. The data acquired shall be transmitted to the base station for further analysis and to be used by the stakeholders for assessment and retrieval. The stored data for retrieval include the patient’s complete medical information along with all the confidential details required for analysis by health professional. The system shall utilize the localization details of the patient at all times; which might be a source of unethical intervention in the personal lives of the patients if the data is not handled professionally by the stakeholders. According to the proposed technological solution for the system, second party (base station correspondents) shall be given complete access to the patient’s medical data  and third party (relatives) shall be given limited amount of access to patient’s data (Yi et al. 2014). For ensuring the alignment of the system with the rules and regulations applicable, following procedures and regulations are considered (Sophie et al. 2012):

  • APMS contract: arrangements made under section 83(2) of the 2006 Act for the provision of primary medical services.
  • The oversight mechanism of the National Health Service Commissioning Board.
  • Confidentiality and disclosure of information: General Medical Services (GMS) Code of Practice.
  • General Medical Council (2009) Confidentiality Code of Practice.

Given the vulnerability of the data acquired at the base station servers, it is very important that complete network security architecture shall be implemented; with cyber security layers deployed at multiple levels (Boric-Lubecke et al. 2014). A complete network security infrastructure shall be designed to ensure the security and integrity of the data, and make the system resistant to third party intrusions.

 

 

 

 

Chapter 5: System Requirements

  • The Client, the Customer and Other Stakeholders

The Client: Hospitals

The Customer: Elderly persons above age of 65 years and their families.

Other Stakeholders: Doctors, Nurses, Carers, Investors, Emergency Response correspondents, Data Protection Agency, and Medical Association.

 

  • Users of the Product

Hospital Personnel: Doctors, Nurses, Carers, Correspondents and Management.

Elderly Persons

Relatives of the Elderly

 

 

Project Constraints

  • Requirements Constraints

The project poses many technological and ergonomic constraints; due to the extent of requirements and limitations, posed by the required flexibility of application.

  • The system shall be reliable at multiple levels to increase the level of trust for the stakeholders: consistency in fall detection, accuracy of unusual behaviour detection, accuracy of coordinates acquisition using GPS, appropriate battery life for 18 hours of non-stop operation, availability of assistance at all times, and consistency in extent of access of information for every stakeholder (Salem et al. 2013).
  • The system shall use complete cloud computing solution for databases and real time networking which shall be secure and free of latency in VOIP.
  • The system must adapt and evolve to minimize errors and enhance accuracy by integrating machine learning algorithms.
  • User interface must be simple and easy to use; satisfying usability demands for the elderly.
  • The wearable device must be easy to handle and lightweight to ensure that the elderly persons can comfortably operate it, avoiding non-usage and refused-usage behaviours. The design must be non-intrusive and maximally discrete (Patel et al. 2012).
  • The collected data must be organized and available in a way to make sense for professional and non-professional users (Marschollek et al. 2012).
  • The number of nodes for end to end data acquisition and communication must be minimized (Lim et al. 2015).

Technological constraints:

  • The device must continuously monitor movement and localization of the user to perform real-time and transparent evaluations which shall be used to make alarm triggering decision using threshold algorithm.
  • The system shall take into account constraints and limitations posed by wearable device and smartphone integration, due to limited battery life (Lim et al. 2015).
  • The size of the sensor node must be minimized to ensure non-intrusive usage (Patel et al. 2012).
  • Data must be available for updates and real-time evaluation continuously; so, the system shall make use of internet of things for connecting servers to the user nodes (Salem et al. 2013).
  • Naming conventions and definitions

GPS: Global Positioning System

GPRS: General Packet Radio Service

WSN: Wireless Sensor Network

WBAN: Wireless Body Area Network

Sensor Node: The wearable device equipped with accelerometer and gyroscope.

Data Acquisition: Acquiring data and tagging it with appropriate relevance for understanding and retrieval.

Data Fusion: Using data from different sources to predict the outcome.

Medical Database: The medical history of the patient maintained at the base centre.

Internet-of-things: A web of sensors and computer devices connected to each other through internet.

Machine Learning: Intelligent agent algorithm which performs changes in the thresholds of the system to enhance the effectiveness of the detection system automatically.

Wearable device: The necklace designed to be worn by the elderly patient, which transmits sensor data to the wireless transmitter and mobile phone.

 

  • Relevant facts and assumptions
  1. The most important assumption is about the usability of wearable device: The assumption is ‘normal usage’ behaviour of the elderly towards wearable device, that is, the person is wearing an emergency wireless transmitter like wrist watch, a necklace or a pendant permanently during the whole day time.
  2. The correspondents at the base centre are available at all times for monitoring activity of the elderly patients and providing assistance in case of fall event detection or abnormal movement detection.

 

Functional Requirements:

  • The scope of the work

The scope of work for the system extends from customized hardware designs to the integration of hardware with customized software at multiple levels. Data-acquisition and Data-fusion shall be performed using real-time evaluations in the database servers with the aid of threshold and machine learning algorithms using cloud platform of Microsoft Azure. The system shall use GPS, GPRS, WSN and WBAN technology to transmit collected sensor data to the database servers and website in real-time (He et al. 2012). The updated information regarding activity and patient condition must be available at an online platform; which shall be accessed by all stakeholders for analysis and updates.

Azure’s predictive analytics services, including Machine Learning, Cortana Analytics and Stream Analytics, will be used for health intelligence. Doctors will be able to make smarter decisions, improve customer service and uncover new business possibilities from structured, unstructured and streaming Internet of Things data.

  • For IOT data handeling and control the system shall use: Azure IOT Hub, Stream Analytics
  • For networking requirements of the system: Azure DNS, CDN, ExpressRoute and Virtual Network.
  • For customer interaction: Business SAAS apps

 

 

Some major requirements of the system include:

  1. Fall Detection System:
  • Automatic emergency response infrastructure:

Alarm in case the elderly person comes out of the care home and garden area;

Alarm in case of no movement for a set period of time; and

Alarm after detection of sudden acceleration and fall.

  • Manual emergency alarm and communication:

The elderly person using the system shall be able to trigger an emergency alarm voluntarily, bypassing the automatic system. Furthermore, the elderly person shall have an option of communicating with the correspondent at base centre at any time.

  • False Alarm Designation:

He elderly person shall be able to respond immediately to a false alarm by signalling a false alarm designation immediately (Salem et al. 2013).

  1. User Localization:

The system must be capable of tracking the position of the elderly at all times. GPS technology along with GSM shall be used to localize the user.

  1. Real-time and transparent evaluation of the movement:

The movement pattern must be evaluated by the system in real-time using the kinematical activity data-with the use of accelerometers; the movement divided into three types: low, medium and high. Abnormal activity must be detected and an alarm shall be triggered in response (Yi et al. 2014).

  1. Bidirectional Voice communication:

Both the correspondent and the elderly person shall have the flexibility of communicating with each other at all times.

  1. Access to battery level information:

The battery level of the devices must be visible to all stakeholders through online platform (Razzaque and Dobson 2014).

  1. Machine Learning Algorithms for data mining and decision making using real time sensor data

The system shall be capable of learning new behaviours and adjusting itself in real time using data server storage and real time data acquisition. Situations such as false alarm trigger and non-detection of fall shall be utilized by smart agents to enhance the algorithm (Kangas et al. 2014).

  1. Indoor data transmission
  2. Outdoor Data transmission

Outdoor data transmission shall be conducted using android phone application connected to the wearable device via Bluetooth connection as mechanised by Casilari et al. (2015)

  • The scope of the product

The product must be able to use a small web of internet of things in the form of sensor nodes and connect it to the internet for real-time data acquisition and decision making. The product shall be based on multiple hardware devices to be used by the elderly, a data acquisition and decision making system to trigger emergency response, an online platform to be used by professionals and relatives of the elderly to analyse and update information, and a data-server to store and interpret information online. Different UCI Software shall be designed: for, the sensor node device; the smart phone; the online platform; MySQL databases; and emergency response centres (Yi et al. 2014).

 

Some of the major requirements for the product include:

  • The product must be cost effective.
  • The product must be easy to handle and discrete.
  • The product must be adaptable.
  • The product must have the flexibility of customization.
  • The product must maximally aid in management.
  • The product must have minimal power requirements.
  • The product must have long battery life.

 

  • Functional and data requirements

The data should be acquired and transmitted in real time with adequate amount of transparency to the online database and the system shall use Microsoft Azure (open, flexible and enterprise grade platform). The online database then can be accessed by the stakeholders for analysis and updates. The updates must be available at online and call centre platforms, which shall use cloud services and data storage facilities.

 

The collected data shall go through a process of data-fusion to integrate sensory information from different nodes. The movement information along with the sensory data from the wearable device shall be available in real-time for the analysis of professionals (Yi et al. 2014). The data collected shall be used by intelligent software agent to predict if an unusual activity has occurred. The unusual activity shall be categorized into three different ways by the algorithm automatically at the base station (call centre) to predict which emergency response alarm must be triggered (Akbar et al. 2015).

 

The patient information available at the online platform must have different level of access for different stakeholders, depending on their privileges defined by the management.

 

Firstly, the data shall only be available online to the registered users and each registered user shall be assigned a different privilege by the management.

 

Secondly, the relatives of the patient should be able to access the real time sensory data being collected by the sensors but shall not be allowed to access all the comments delineated by the professionals.

Thirdly, an activity report shall be generated once a day and its comparison shall be made by normal activity to sense any possible dangers. This shall be done using data-mining algorithms implemented on the acquired data.

 

Fourthly, the medical professional shall be given complete access to the history and reports generated by patient’s activity. They shall be allowed to amend the data and add their comments and diagnosis online.

 

Non-functional Requirements:

  • Look and Feel Requirements

The product shall utilize a minimalist design and interface standard. The wearable sensor node shall be made as attractive as possible with minimum number of buttons so as to make it less noticeable.

 

  • Usability and Humanity Requirements

The wearable device must be easy to handle and lightweight to ensure that the elderly can comfortably operate it-avoiding non-usage and refused-usage behaviours. The design must be non-intrusive and maximally discrete.

 

The system shall be dependable enough to induce a sense of security and confidence in the patients which can possibly add to its worth and users will deviate less from normal usage.

 

  • Performance Requirements

The system shall be reliable at multiple levels, to increase the level of trust for the stakeholders: consistency in fall detection, accuracy of unusual behaviour detection, accuracy of coordinates acquisition using GPS, appropriate battery life for 18 hours of non-stop operation, availability of assistance at all times, and consistency in extent of access of information for every stakeholder (Akbar et al.2015).

 

 

 

  • Operational and environmental Requirements

The system shall be capable of operating in all sorts of environment. To ensure the operations in variable environments the wearable device must be water proof, shock resistant, shall be capable of operating in extreme temperatures.

  • Maintainability and Support Requirements

A base station shall be mechanized with a purpose of collecting data through wireless transmission, storing data in the data base, using data-mining and data fusion algorithms to trigger emergency response, and a call centre to respond to the emergency needs and communicate with the patient (Kapadia et al. 2015).

 

The medical professional along with other authorized users of the online platform must have access to the battery level of the fall detection sensor node. The system must trigger an alarm in case the battery needs recharging.

 

  • Security Requirements

The data acquired through sensor nodes must only be available to users with authorized access and strict measures must be taken to ensure security of the data at the base station. Complete security requirements protocol is established in Part 2.

 

  • Cultural Requirements

Given that the sensor node is a wearable device; it must be designed such that it is not detectable while the user interacts with other people, so that peers do not pass judgmental remarks.

 

  • Legal Requirements

UK Data Protection Rules and Regulations are applicable for the security of personal information of the patients.

The medical professional using the data and providing services shall be fully qualified for the jobs and should have a professional education.

For detailed legal and ethical requirements kindly see Part 2.

Project Issues:

  • Open Issues

The issues are all covered in the requirements constraints section of the template.

  • Off-the-Shelf Solutions

 

The indoor and outdoor operation:

To enable the system to collect data and transmit it in real time at any place the patient might be, a triple node bidirectional transmission mechanism shall be designed.

 

For indoor application a wireless transmission device is connected to the wearable sensor.

 

For outdoor fall detection a mobile phone shall be used, connected to the wearable sensor device through Bluetooth technology (Casilari et al. 2015).

 

The data collected shall be retained and stored at the call centre to be available for data mining in order to detect unusual activity.

 

Proposed Technological solution:

The proposed technological solution of the system is mechanised taking into close consideration the requirements mentioned in the Volere Template.

The system shall utilize the same infrastructure for fall detection. However, for indoor operations system shall utilize the PERS (personal emergency response system) infrastructure which consists of a wearable device and a base station used for data transmission to the base centre and mobile communication (Casilari et al. 2015).

Personal Emergency Response System shall comprise of three nodes:

  • The wearable device
  • The wireless transmitter remotely connected to the database centre using PERS systems.
  • A mobile device used for communication with the base centre in case of emergency outdoors- the use of built-in tri-accelerometer of smart phone along with GPS data transmission system shall be utilized for fall detection (He et al. 2012).

 

The data collected shall be analysed in real time using threshold algorithms to initiate emergency response infrastructure as proposed by Phu et al. (2015). The data fusion shall be done over the internet through utilizing MySQL database integrating nodes of the system in a web of IoT. The issues as delineated by Kapadia et al. (2015) shall be considered to implement end to end medical informatics.

For the implementation of the hardware infrastructure an INGA wireless sensor node shall be used (Kapadia et al. 2015). The node comprises of an accelerometer, a gyroscope and a barometric pressure sensor. Accelerometer shall transmit the primary data acquired to detect abnormal behaviour. The wireless sensor node is equipped with an IEEE 802.15.4 compatible radio transceiver, which is widely used in the area of Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) and Wireless Body Area Networks (WBANs) (Lim et al. 2015).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SysML REQUIREMENTS DIAGRAMS:

 

Diagram 1: Operating Environment: Indoor and Outdoor

Figure 1: SysML requirements diagram: Operational environment.

 

 

Diagram 2: Type of alarm depending on the movement:

Figure 2: SysML requirements diagram: Alarm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

USE CASES:

  • Use Case 2:

Overview:

Health professional analyses and updates patient information from the online platform.

Name: Update Medical reports through online platform.

Identifier: BC2

 

Actors:

Primary Actor: Medical Professionals

Supporting Actor: Online Reception Software Application

 

Preconditions:

  1. The medical professional has authorization of access and can amend the reports of patients.
  2. The system is running online with database maintained at the call centre.

 

Flow of events:

  1. The health professional access the online reception software application using web browser.
  2. The system prompts with the user-interface asking for log-in information. The health professional enters his user name and password.
  3. The system directs the professional to the available database according to his/her privilege of amendment and provides access to reports of the patients generated in the past. The system saves the activity log, tagged with recent activity of the user which can be retrieved at the call centre by Age Concerns management.
  4. The health professional uses the options on the interface to access the reports of the patient under observation. The system prompts with search for the patient number to access relevant data. The system interface also guides the professional to analyse real-time data received from the movement and fall detection devices.
  5. The health professional enters the unique patient ID in the search box.
  6. The system compares the privileges allowed to the user for the specific patient number.
  7. The system directs the user into the profile of the patient, from where the user can access previously generated reports and amend them accordingly.
  8. The user selects the report to be studied, using the date of the report generated.
  9. The user analyses the report and adds his suggestions and diagnosis along with messages for different stakeholders.
  10. The system tags the generated data with the name and ID of the health professional. It updates the database immediately and sends a notification to the stakeholders in their corresponding accounts. The carers and call centre professionals get the instructions generated by the system to act according following the advice of health professional.

 

Postconditions:

The database is updated for every user in real-time.

 

Alternative Course:

  1. The unique patient ID entered by the health professional does not allows privileged access to the user, to study and amend the details.

5.1. System shows a warning message indicating that the user was denied access to the desired information and the user must contact the management team if he/she has detected an unusual behaviour.

5.2. User contacts the support team at the call centre, using Voice-Over-IP communication option at the website and delivers a request for the change in privilege for the patient.

Figure 4: Business Use Case Diagram 2.

 

Product Use Cases:

  • Use Case 1: Alarm activation system by the elderly without fall detection

Overview:

The elderly patient feels a need to talk to the correspondent at the call centre bypassing the emergency alarm response.

Name: Update Medical reports through online platform.

Identifier: PC1

 

Actors:

Primary Actor: Elderly Patient

Primary Actor: Correspondent

Supporting Actor: Call centre software

 

Preconditions:

  1. The elderly person is wearing the necklace (sensor node): Normal Usage.
  2. The correspondent is available at the call centre.
  3. The wireless indoor link to the call centre is working and transmitting real time data to the call centre database.

 

Flow of events:

  1. The elderly patient detects an unusual health condition.
  2. The patient uses his/her pendant to press the button available for direct communication.
  3. The correspondent responds by contacting the patient through wireless GSM transmitter if he is indoors.
  4. The patient refuses to answer but presses the button on the pendant indicating emergency medical assistance required.
  5. The correspondent sends the message to the emergency response team which in turn show up at the door of elderly person using his localization information.
  6. The patient responds to the queries and receives the required emergency medical treatment from nurses.
  7. The patient answers the question if he/she wants doctor at his home or if he is willing to go to the care centre.

 

Postconditions:

The emergency team reaches the location on time.

 

Alternative Course:

  1. The patient is outdoor on the road.

3.1. The data transferred to the base-centre is through the mobile phone.

  1. The patient answers the mobile phone and communicates his situation.

4.1. The correspondent analyses the situation and predicts the intensity of emergency.

 

Figure 3: Business Use Case Diagram 1.

Figure 3: Business Use Case Diagram 1.

Figure 5: Product Use Case Diagram 1.

 

  • Use Case 2: Information access by the relatives

 

Overview:

Relatives of the elderly use the online platform to check the condition and activity of the elderly person.

Name: Relatives accessing online system platform.

Identifier: PC2

 

Actors:

Primary Actor: Relatives of the elderly

Supporting Actor: online system platform

 

Preconditions:

  1. The relative of elderly person has authorization of access to the information of the patient.
  2. The online system is updated from the base centre.

Flow of events:

  1. The relative of the elderly person uses the website URL to access his/her authorized account
  2. The website opens the login page and asks for the login information of the person.
  3. The user enters the username and password assigned by the management.
  4. The user selects the option for checking the patient’s medical condition.
  5. The user analyses the information and prints the data to keep the record to him.
  6. The user chooses the option to check comments by the medical professional.
  7. The user adds queries to the message board which will be answered by the health professional.
  8. The user logs out of the account.

 

Postconditions:

The relative uses the information to serve the elderly better.

 

Alternative Course:

  1. The relative does not have authorized access to the patient’s information anymore.
  • The log-in page requests the relative to talk to call centre for help.

 

Figure 6: Product Use Case Diagram 2.

 

Adapt Case: Enhancing data analysis and decision making for fall detection using machine learning algorithms

Overview:

Adaptation of better algorithm for unusual behaviour detection using false alarm data and the data acquired in case a fall occurred but the system failed to trigger the alarm.

 

Name: Use machine learning intelligent agent to enhance the reliability of the system.

Identifier: AC1

 

Actors:

Primary Actor: Intelligent software agent

Primary Actor: Elderly person

Supporting Actor: Call centre software

 

Preconditions:

  1. The elderly person experienced a fall but the alarm was not triggered at the base centre.
  2. The elderly person did not experience a fall but a false alarm was triggered at the base centre.

 

Flow of events:

  1. The elderly patient experiences an unusual health condition and experiences a fall.
  2. The system uses the data but does not comprehend the behaviour as a fall event.
  3. The elderly person uses the bypassing mechanism, to trigger a manual alarm.
  4. The intelligent agent stores the data acquired before the manual alarm to add to the data base as an example of a fall event.
  5. The intelligent agent adjusts the algorithm to adapt to the latest example data stored for fall event.

 

Alternative Course:

  1. The elderly patient does not experience an unusual health condition or a fall and a false alarm is triggered at the base centre.
  2. The system uses the data and comprehends the behaviour as a fall event.
  3. The elderly person uses false alarm button to indicate that an actual fall did not occurred.
  4. The intelligent agent stores the data acquired before the false alarm to add to the data base as an example of false fall event.
  5. The intelligent agent adjusts the algorithm to adapt to the latest example data stored for fall event.

 

 

 

Figure 7: Adapt Use Case Diagram.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 6: Conclusion and Recommendation

Ethical issues, Data Encryption and Privacy

Encryption shall be done over all communication channels from sensor node transmission to the PERS transmitter as well as Internet, ISP-based connections etc. Confidential data shall be kept encrypted on the workstations and data base station (Al Ameen et al. 2012). Strict change controls shall be used. Field level file change history shall be maintained. Digital signatures of creator and checker shall be acquired in real time.

Some important considerations for network and data security infrastructure include (Kapadia et al. 2015):

  • Firewalls-internet connection
  • Integrated smart card access control at the data base station
  • Encryption-Application specific
  • Database Security-Proprietary, DBMS-specific, RBAC (role based access control).
  • Authentication- User ID and password based with limited smart card pilots

 

To ensure ethical disclosure of patient’s medical data the following issues shall be taken into consideration:

  • The patient shall be informed of the data usage purposes: for direct clinical care (assessment by health professionals); and for secondary uses (access by the relatives). As according to the requirements online database shall be maintained for frequent access by the stakeholder to patient’s medical data. The patient shall be given access to online database website to change the privilege of access for any second party under the UK National Health Service (NHS), ‘The confidentiality and Disclosure of Information Directive 2013’ (2013).
  • The health professionals shall take into consideration the Data Protection Act 1998 and consider each patient as a unique case study. The online base station website shall delineate the implied rules from the Act to ensure that the doctors consider them before upholding any sort of data usage. Data Protection Act 1998 legislates the following:
  1. Medical data shall be discarded after its necessary usage is completed.
  2. The data required for different purpose shall be disclosed differently, to minimize disclosure amount.
  3. The stakeholders must ensure safety and security in data handling and storage.
  4. Information shall be retained about the place of data storage; the oversight mechanism shall assure the implementation of security and contractual agreements.
  5. A written assurance shall be provided to the stakeholder to outline the type and intensity of data disclosure, with a surety that the data will not be disclosed to a third party.
  • The secondary usage shall be maximally restricted to disclosure of effectively anonymised, pseudonymised or aggregated data. Such as the correspondent at the base station shall not be given access to patient’s personal information such as name, ID or picture. The emergency infrastructure shall use a unique code name provided to each patient. Section 251 of the NHS Act 2006 provides statutory basis for patients to restrict the release of medical data to a second or third party disclosure.
  • The stakeholders shall retain a key to code data and convert it from anonymised to specified form as advised by General Medical Council (2009) Confidentiality, GMC, London p.30.
  • The express consent of the patient is not required under the ‘Confidentiality and disclosure of information Directions 2013’, which delineates statutory basis for bypassing consent where it is not practical to hide data tagging; such as, disclosures relating to financial and management arrangements of NHS (regulations 2004).
  • A formal data sharing protocol shall be published on the base centre website.
  • The health professional shall have an approval of a written protocol delineating the structure of their trials for the patient as instructed by the report ‘Staff care: how to engage staff in the NHS and why it matters’ published by The Point of Care Foundation (2014). The correspondent shall stick to asking about specified and approved set of questions when contacting the elderly in case of emergency. All clinical trials shall be authorised by ethics committees working under NHS as part of the Health Research Authority’s National Research Ethics Service (NRES).

 

 

 

 

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Toyot Business Plan

June 19, 2017

 

Table of Contents

Executive Summary. 2

Introduction. 3

An overview of China. 3

Growth of Tourism in China. 4

Environment Analysis. 7

Political Factors. 7

Political Risk. 8

Economic. 9

Economic Risk. 9

Social 10

Race and Ethnicity. 10

Technology. 11

Implications of PEST Analysis. 11

Strategic Plan. 12

Mission Statement 12

Vision Statement 12

Core Values. 12

Competitive Advantage. 13

Strategic Plan. 13

Implement Targeted Advertising and Promotion. 13

Training and Developing Staff Skills. 13

Innovative Pricing Model 14

Value Added Services. 14

Implementing Total Quality Management 14

Customer Segments. 14

Introduction. 14

Roles and Responsibilities of Team Members. 15

Senior Director 15

Quality Manager 15

Customer Lead Manager 15

Company Stakeholders and Responsibilities. 15

Project Organizational Chart 16

Tabular Representation of Staff Roles. 16

Finance Plan. 16

Conclusion. 16

References. 17

 

 

 

 

Executive Summary

The aim of TOYOT is to provide accessible tours and travels guide services to Chinese tourists looking to travel around Europe and other international destinations. The company’s primary mode of communication with the customers is the WeChat web and phone application which has an estimated customer base of over 400 million users in China. Leveraging on the application gives the company a considerable competitive advantage over the rest of the market segment as TOYOT will be able to offer virtual tours of Europe and other destinations. A company representative will provide information and guidance to a customer’s query regarding a particular destination. In essence, using the WeChat application allows TOYOT to become a personalized and virtual travel concierge offering virtual tours of Europe to Chinese tourists. Additionally, TOYOT will offer tourists the flexibility of exploring various tourist destinations without the rigidity conferred by the traditional tours and travel companies. A majority of these companies offer travel packages that limit tourists on sites and attractions they can visit, or how long they can stay at the destination. However, using TOYOT, tourists will be able to explore any attraction at their own pleasure without any restraints. Additionally, the tourist using the TOYOT application is assured of avoiding tourist traps common in most tourist destinations. These goals are form the core values of the company which are to re-introduce integrity and professionalism back into the tourism industry, provide flexibility to consumers, and also to empower Chinese tourists during their vacations and travels.

TOYOT takes into account the various factors of doing business in the Chinese market. Politically, the company takes note of the risk associated with various federal and provincial laws that may affect the tourism industry. Additionally, the business plan also accommodates the economic variables of the Chinese government to ensure the viability of its business plan. Regarding the cultural and social factors, the plan business plan takes note of various social norms and social expectations expected by the Chinese community.

With regards to personnel and human resource management, the business plan stipulates the hierarchical organization of TOYOT as well as the expected roles of each identified position in the organization. Lastly, the business plan provides a financial analysis of the cost of doing business in the organization.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introduction

An overview of China

The birth of the People’s Republic of China came when the armies of the Chinese Communist Part overcame the forces led by Jiang Jieshi. The defeated army moved to Taiwan to seek asylum with the help of the United States of America. After the war, China was desolate, with over 400 million inhabitants, most of whom were illiterate peasants working on farm lands. The country received backing from the Soviet Union hence it was isolated from the West during the first decade of the war. During this period, the country tried to build a communist economy through revolutions such as the ‘Great Leap Forward’ and the ‘Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution’. Both of these attempts ended with catastrophes as a majority of the population faced humanitarian crisis. It was only after the death of Mao Zedong and the start of the third plenary session of the eleventh congress of the Communist Part that China started experiencing growth. In 1978, the new congress instituted economic changes under the slogan of ‘Reform and Opening’. The reforms brought about the modernization of China as well as unprecedented economic growth.

The period also introduced agricultural growth that was closely followed by the acceptance of foreign direct investments. The investments went towards the establishment of industries which consequently led to the Chinese manufacturing economy. At the time China had the same gross domestic output as India, however, after at the turn of the century, China’s GDP was almost double that of India. The accelerated economic growth led to China’s acceptance in the global economy when it joined the World Trade Organization in the first year of the 21st Century. At the start of the Century, China had already established itself as the factory of the world. Most of the manufacturing activities moved to China with textile, cereals, meat and steel factories making up a significant part of the Chinese industrial sector. At the same time, China developed a large domestic tourism market in terms of internal tourism numbers.

During the period of the resurgence of the Chinese economy, life expectancy in the country rose from 50 years to 70 years. Compared to the decades between 1950 and 1980, the Chinese population was experiencing better quality of life. I the 1950s, less than 8 children out of 10 reached the age of 5. However, from 2000 onwards, 9 out of 10 children attain the age of five. Additionally, the level of illiteracy has gone down considerably as more than 90 per cent of the population can read and write. Most of the Chinese nationals have upper class education and above. According to the Human Development Index maintained by the United Nations Development Program, China has a rank of 85 out of 177 countries in terms of education, life expectancy and income per household.

However, the development of China is not without problems. Although the Chinese have managed to host the Olympic Games and send satellites into orbit, the country is still faced with the problems significant discrepancies between the poor and the rich. The manufacturing activities in the country have also disseminated the country’s environment and ecosystem, and democracy in the country is still at its infancy. The gap between the poor and the rich in China is the biggest in the world. From the mid 1990s, the economic gap between the employed and the unemployed is widening at a constant rate. Estimates show that the employed Chinese individual earns three times as much as the unemployed. That makes the income gap between the two groups the widest in the world if non-currency factors are removed from the equation. Furthermore, the rich 1 per cent in the Chinese population earn 6 per cent of the total national income, while the top 5 per cent earn as much as 20 per cent of the total national income.

In terms of wealth, the top 10 per cent of the Chinese economy owns more than 50 per cent of the country’s private equity. The bottom 10 per cent on the other hand own less than 1 per cent of the nation’s private equity. Additionally, if China was divided into first world, second world, third world and fourth world, a quarter of the population lives in first and second world, which are the richest segments. Another quarter would inhabit the third world, while half of the country’s population would live in the fourth world, which is characterized by povert. That would mean that only a quarter of the nation’s population enjoys a well-off life, even though that number is close to 250 million. Apart from the staggering differences between the well off and the poor in the country, other threats to Chinese economic growth is the one-child policy as well as environmental pollution.

Growth of Tourism in China

Alt (2013) while chronicling the Chinese outbound tourism market notes that over the last 10 years, international Chinese outbound tourism has gained prominence as the largest global source of tourism. During the same period, the Chinese tourism has gained the same level of diversification and segmentation that took a century to develop in Europe and North America (Alt 2013). Tourism in China is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the economy owing the emergence of a middle-class economy that led to the generation of disposable income. According to the Routledge Handbook of the Chinese Economy (2014) various economic reforms in China have resulted in the increase in household disposable income. For instance, between 1980 and 1985, the disposable annual income of rural Chinese citizens rose from 19 Yuan to 398 Yuan as a result of the replacement of commune farming with private farming on collected land. Additionally, Chow and Perkins (2014) note that compared to other countries, the average Chinese household saves more than their counterparts in other countries, which may explain why the average disposable income in China is slightly lower than that of other countries, even though the annual amount per capita is significant owing to the large population in the country.

The net effect of an increased disposable income in the Chinese population is an increased consumer spending power in the nation. For nearly half a century, the Chinese consumer has experienced considerable increases in its spending power owing to the country’s exponentially growing economy. Currently, China is shifting its economic power from Foreign Direct Investments to a consumer driven economy. Policymakers and economist likewise agreed that for China to sustain its enviable economic growth, the Chinese government must empower its citizenry economically. As a result, consumers in the country will spend enough money to sustain economic since the country’s large population, when empowered economically, can generate enough revenue to maintain constant economic growth. As a result, various government level reforms have initiated economic empowerment of the Chinese national that has allowed the citizens to focus on luxuries such as tourism. The government has for instance build new airports in the country encouraging travel within the country as well as to other countries. Such efforts are in an attempt to move the Chinese economy from a manufacturing dependent economy, into a more diverse and sustainable economy.

Another major economic reform directly linked to the exponential growth of tourism in China is the reform and opening-up which refers to the “Socialism with Chinese characteristics that was instituted in 1978 by the reformist Deng Xiaoping. Reynolds (2016) notes that the reform is one of the innovations that contributed to the growth of tourism in China. According to the author, the economic reforms in the decade following 1978 China experienced a significant economic growth as well as exposure to the rest of the world. Chinese nationals were no longer contended with domestic tourism and they began to seek out international destinations. The desire coupled with considerable wealth gain by the middle class has resulted in the outbound tourism growth that is tandem with the growth of the Chinese economy. The Chinese tourist first started to explore the world in the late 1970s, and in the 80s, the barrier to enter Hong Kong, Thailand and Macao were lifted. Hence these destinations were the first choice for the aspiring Chinese international tourist and they were quickly followed by New Zealand, South Korea, Australia, the larger Asia Pacific region and the Philippines. After 2002, Chinese nationals started visiting Europe enmasse while others toured Africa and South America. From the above stated facts, it is possible to conclude that political reforms that led to economic reforms in China are the greatest drivers of outbound tourism in China, and as such feature prominently during the investigation of the Chinese tourism environmental analysis.

The casual relationship between the growth of the Chinese economy, or any other economy, is referred to as the tourism-led growth hypothesis. It was first advanced in 2002, and it presupposes that the consumption driven by tourism leads to not only the generation of revenue, but also to the creation of job opportunities. Zuo (2017) reported that out of 11 jobs in the world, 1 job was created by the tourism industry. Consequently, a lot of industries are leveraging themselves to furnish services and goods to an ever-expanding tourism industry.TOYOT aims to undertake an investment of resources to invest in the tourism industry, more specifically the Chinese outbound tourism industry on the foundations of the above reported facts, as well as the arguments presented in the rest of this section.

Tourism, as noted earlier, is a significant and critical part of the Chinese economy. Out of the $1.5 trillion spent on international tourism in 2015, China’s outbound tourism activities contributed to $215 billion from 109 million tourists (Petroff 2016). That would indicate that the country contributed approximately 14% to the world’s tourism revenue in 2015. CNN money reported that this figure was a 53% increase from the one recorded in 2014, while the number of tourists has double over the last five years. Therefore, according to CNN Money, out of 10 international tourists, one of them comes from China (Petroff 2016).

The report from CNN continues to support the hypothesis that the growth of outbound Chinese tourism is a direct result of empowerment of the middle-class residents in the country. Middle class residents in China start traveling abroad after realizing earnings of $35, 000 according to the website. In the decade between 2003 and 2013, approximately 21 million Chinese households graduated into the $35, 000 threshold while an additional 61 million households are expected to join the ranks by 2023. Consequently, the Chinese outbound tourism sector is set to experience continued and sustained growth for the next growth, providing further support for the TOYOT tourism startup.

The TOYOT application will help the Chinese tourist navigate worldwide tourist destinations. However, the significant focus of the application will be to help tourists navigate across Europe which coincidentally is becoming a preferred destination for Chinese tourists. Traditionally, tourists from China tended to explore Asia during their first trip outside their home country. The older generations visiting Europe and other destinations outside Asia tend to travel in groups while the younger generations tend to travel alone or in pairs.

One of the key challenge faced by the Chinese tourist is a lack of empowerment. The tourist industry in the country developed a mass stereotype of the country’s consumer leading to the creation of tour packages that take away the power of tourists to choose from a diverse selection of packages. Though most of these tour packages are affordable, they restrict the tourist to rigid, predictable and manipulative arrangements. For instance, the creation of the “zero-dollar tours” in China grossly misleads the customers who opt-in believing that the package is cheap. However, the customers are directed to tour shops that charge exorbitant prices on wares, generating commission for the tour companies that sold the package. Such instances are an example of the common tourism trap that are faced by the Chinese consumer. Through the TOYOT application, the Chinese tourist will be able to avoid such misleading offers and at the same time gain the freedom and flexibility taken away by tour packages offered by tour companies. Group tourists in China are especially subject to tourist traps. Estimates hold that there are at least 150 million Chinese people booked in travel groups in Seoul and the Eiffel tower (Alt 2013). The author notes that the “four nights in Phuket” and the “Europe from a coach window” tour packages are especially attractive owing to their low prices. However, these products are of inferior quality. They limit the tourist in both the sites they can visit as well as the flexibility of their schedule. A majority of these tourists will not have the chance to explore other parts of Europe or Seoul. Service providers in the Chinese market seek to dis-empower tourists through hard power impositions as well as soft power manipulations. In the hard power impositions, the provider imposes its own interest on the behavior of tourists. It structures a vacation or a tour around its own interests thereby foregoing the interests of the consumer. The final result is the domination of the provider where the tourist has no power to decide on the structure of the tour. At other times, the provider uses intimidation tactics where it stipulates repercussions of not conforming with its overt directions. Most tour companies in China give repercussions of not conforming with the Chinese norms forcing the tourist to opt-in to their packages.

On the other hand, the provider may choose to use manipulation in order to build relationships with the tourist. Here, it manipulates the tourist by orchestrating actions that lead to a perception of reliance. In such a scenario, the provider may, for instance, provide accommodation for the tourist away from the downtown area. Such an action blinds the tourist from the provider’s competitors who may have better accommodation at better rates. Manipulation in the tourism industry allows the provider to set the agenda such that it has influence of where the tourist visit, eat, and even shop. Such influence works in favor of the provider since most of the time it receives incentives in the form of commissions by directing tourists to certain areas. However, with TOYOT, the tourist has the flexibility to travel to any part of the world without reliance on tour packages. The application offers flexibility by guiding the tourist to various tour destinations in a preferred region as well as offering immediate assistance with directions, eateries, group meeting points, accommodation and even transport. Hence, TOYOT takes the power away from tour companies and gives it back to the tourist.

Environment Analysis

It is imperative to identify the forces in play in the micro-business environment, as well as forces that are likely to affect the business in the future. An analysis of TOYOT micro-environment is based on the PEST model, which is an acronym that stands for Political, Economic, Social-cultural, Technological, Legislative and Ecological aspects. These aspects are related to the Chinese environment, as well as the global environment since outbound tourism largely depends on a country’s relations to others on a global scale. The PEST analysis helps provide the foundations for various strategic decisions that guide the implementation and offering of the service to the Chinese tourist market. Additionally, the analysis will aid in identifying future challenges and consequently preparing for them so that the proposed business model is successful and sustainable. PEST provides insight into factors that are apt to affect the tourism industry and TOYOT as an organization. However, it is worth mentioning that the business environment is complex and at any single instance, there can be dozens of external factors acting on the business. For that reason, it is not possible to focus on all external factors. Therefore, the PEST analysis described here isolates the key influencing factors and focuses on these. These key factors are likely to interact with others hence their analysis might prove useful in the contextualization of other less important factors.

Political Factors

Businesses are inevitably linked to politics since most economical decisions are driven by political forces as seen in the example of the Chinese reformation discussed earlier. Consequently, all the operations at TOYOT are subject to government or political influence, although the degree of influence may vary from one activity to another. While the analysis of the external environment can reveal the political influence TOYOT can expect, it is prudent to leave room for unexpected changes in the political environment that will impact on the business. For instance, prior to 1978, outbound tourism in China was almost non-existent as the political nature of the country at the time actively restricted Chinese contact with the rest of the world. However, the reformation opened up China, spurring the growth of outbound tourism. While such an outcome was predictable at the time of the reforms, what was not predictable was the fact that outbound Chinese tourism would lead to the country shift from a manufacturing economy to a consumer-driven economy.

Informed by the above-mentioned argument, the following areas are identified as likely candidates for political influence in TOYOT. These areas interact with processes that are either directly or indirectly tied to political or governmental controls in China, as well as other countries frequented by Chinese tourists. Politics are influenced by societal opinion. Therefore, the society governs what is deemed as important, popular, acceptable, and what is to be avoided. Consequently, political establishments have the power to influence the opinions of Chinese tourists. The political elite in China has considerable influence on the destination Chinese tourists prefer, and they have the power to enact legislations that directly affect the tourism industry in the country.

The political environment can influence outbound tourism in that a country can opt not to engage in relations with another country due to political reasons. The political environment in China and its effect on tourism is underpinned on three theoretical aspects. Globalization, the first aspect assumes that outbound tourism is dependent on the emergence of globalization. That is outbound tourism, and international tourism is a culmination of social phenomenon observed at the international level. The second aspect is the Chinese mixed economy. Since the Chinese government created favorable conditions that support outbound tourism through the empowerment of the middle class, it has consequently contributed to outbound tourism in the country. The third political aspect is the political display of China’s global power through outbound tourism.

Of particular concern is for TOYOT is the aspect of globalization, which has recently influenced trends in the Chinese outbound tourism market. Since the world transformed into a global village after the advent of air travel and global communication networks, it inevitably led to the collapse of the communist regime that consequently led to China opening up its borders to the rest of the world. Consequently, the change in political ideology in the country led to the growth of outbound tourism as most nationals sort to explore other nations after years of ban on international travel. However, it is likely that globalization and internationalization may be impeded by political factors that seek to return control of the Chinese economy back to the state. Currently, the Chinese economy that relies mostly on manufacturing is open to the dynamics of globalization. Hence it is subject to the whims other states, and scholars expect transformationalists in China may seek to limit such effects.
For instance, in 2016 outbound tourism from China to Japan and Thailand dropped by 20% after the Taiwanese President failed to acknowledge that Taiwan and mainland China form two parts of one country. The remark resulted in a drop of tourists from mainland China into Taiwan because the political elite in the country influenced the preference of Taiwan as a tourist destination. They did this by giving tourist travel agencies explicit orders to limit Taiwan bound tourism. Such sentiments indicate that the structure and ideology of the Chinese government can heavily influence the tourism industry, and consequently tourism industries including TOYOT.
The example above indicates that the Chinese political arena is subject to fast changes which means that the tourism industry in the country is subject to volatile and sudden changes.
Apart from the Chinese internal politics, it is also important to consider the political nature of favorable international destinations preferred by the Chinese tourist. Political changes in the European Union for instance may affect China’s outbound tourism. Recently when Britain voted to move out of the European Union, it proactively made it much harder for tourists to visit the various attractions within its borders. Such volatility in the European Union can led to significant implications to TOYOT business model as it seeks to furnish Chinese tourists exploring Europe with information and assistance. If the political climate within the Union is unfavorable for Chinese tourists, then TOYOT would consequently loose a large market.

Political Risk

Owing to the nature of the Chinese government, the country represents a hazardous political environment. China political arena continuously advocates for the nationalization of industries as well as the risk of expropriation, contract repudiation, confiscation of company assets and currency inconvertibility. The United States over the last few years has particularly accused China of manipulating its currency and such accusations may occasion political turmoil between China and the rest of the world. The currency devaluation and unbridled inflation rates in the country are also matters of concern for TOYOT. Such changes may interfere with insurance limits or make foreign currency exchange unnecessarily difficult. However, even while the human rights violations in the company are rampant, there is little risk of staff kidnapping or harm in the company. Additionally, the country does not present the risk of company extortion like the ones observed in countries with similar political risks. The unique nature of the political risk in China is presented by the constant struggle between the central government and the provincial governments over various legislatures. Hence companies operating in the country may face difficulties in the application of either sets of laws.

Economic

The nature of foreign direct investments (FDI) in China is a key consideration for TOYOT on the basis that the foreign nature of the company’s investment. Studies show that China is one of the leading recipients of FDI which accounts for a considerable portion of the Chinese economy. A majority of companies dealing with electronics, and lately tourism, invest directly in the Chinese economy. Most of these companies are European, American or Japanese multinationals and although they import a considerable portion of their production from China, they also offer it for the consumption of the Chinese domestic market. The Chinese introduced measures to control the FDI coming into the country through the Chinese National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC). The commission addresses issues relating to FDI and their impact on the Chinese national security such that it can restrict FDIs that are deemed to pose a threat to Chinese establishments. Currently, the NDRC approves FDI that is targeted towards technological industries, manufacturing, service industries, manufacturing and environmental protection.

TOYOT will be affected by the inflation rate observed in the Chinese market. Inflation affects the consumer purchasing power and since 2009, the prices of commodities in China have been on a steady decline. The result of the price drop is noted in the willingness of the consumer to spend, and in the tourism industry, consumers have been spending at a gradually increasing rate. With such inflation rates, the government in the country has taken to enabling the establishment of the country’s infrastructure building roads and airports. These two infrastructures have not only made China accessible to the rest of the world, but they have also made it possible for the Chinese citizen to venture out and explore the rest of the world. Hence the current inflation rate in the country is an enabling factor for outbound tourism.

Economic Risk

Currently, China is experiencing a downturn in its economy. The downturn has occasioned a decline in foreign direct investment in the country, while the country continues to increase its investment in other countries. The discrepancies between the two investments have caused considerable angst over the availability of capital within China’s borders since there is a deficit in FDI flow. As such, a majority of investors are speculating on whether to invest in the country and most of them are opting to invest in other countries. As such, the economic uncertainty in China presents a considerable risk for TOYOT. The uncertainty means there are lesser chances of raising private capital for the company which is needed so as to achieve the goal of being one of the dominant tourism service providers in the next decade. However, the sheer numbers of outbound tourists from the country can offset the challenge presented by the decline in economic growth. If the company establishes itself as a premier tourism provider, it can enjoy the perpetuity presented by the growing number of tourists. Most of the outbound tourists in the company travel once in their lifetime however. Therefore the company must develop a model where it maximizes the opportunity presented by a single tourist. To that effect, TOYOT will charge a one-time fee for every tourist.

Social

China has the largest global population, with an estimated 1.4 billion inhabitants. The population is set to increase at the rate of 15 million people every single year, a change which positively impacts on TOYOT since the company will have a large number of customers. However, the problem occasioned with the large population is that the resources of the country are continuously strained. Even after the economic reforms that resulted in a new and wealthy middle class in the country, poverty levels are still rampant. The government consequently introduced the one-child per family policy in an attempt to control the population growth of the country so as to equitably distribute the dwindling national resources.

Another environmental consideration directly affecting the tourism industry in China is the cultural aspects of the Chinese community. Culture in China is a critical factor to consider in business conduct. The Chinese community is largely influenced by the Confucian philosophy which forms the core identity of the Chinese tourist and other business partners. The Confucian philosophy places importance on family, hierarchical social structure, morality, and an emphasis on hard work. Consequently, the business emissaries appointed by TOYOT must take these factors into consideration while conducting business with the consumers and other business partners in the region. Additionally, the cultural nature of the Chinese places power on collectivism rather than individuality. Therefore, in relation to the human resource department established by TOYOT, it is imperative to make sure that collectivism takes precedent above individual aspect. The above rationale is captured by the Power Distance Index (PDI) which stipulates the extent to power is distributed between members of an organization. The PDI philosophy accommodates collectivism by preferring group contributions as opposed to individual efforts. It also accepts that higher ranking members of an organization have more power than lower ranking members.  Hence the managers in a Chinese organization can exercise, and frequently wield power, over the rest of the employees. PDI is a stark contrast of the Individualism (IDV) concept which associates loose ties between individuals in a group. In IDV, individuals look out for themselves as opposed to collectivism expressed in PDI. The uncertainty avoidance index of the Chinese (UAI) community is higher than that of Western countries. Therefore, the Chinese are not tolerant to different opinions, especially ones expressed between individuals with different ranks. The UAI is of the Chinese community consequently present another challenge, especially in the realm of human resources of TOYOT.

Race and Ethnicity

In China, the concept of race is non-existent. Rather, the Chinese define themselves culturally. Therefore, the majority of the nation accepts norms and practices that are Chinese, and they call themselves the sons of Han, in reference to the Han Dynasty which has great significance in the history of the country. In the history of the country, various small groups came into contact with the Han Dynasty and they were absorbed and naturalized in the Chinese ways. The process still continues today on both the corporate and individual levels although the country has laws that protect the rights and identity of minority groups.

The minorities, according to the traditional Chinese definition are a group of individuals who occupy the same geographical region, and share the same language and social values. The minorities are relatively small compared to the indigenous Chinese population, forming approximately 6.7 per cent of the entire population. However, they have a significant role in the Chinese culture and history owing to the strategic territories they inhabit. These territories are mostly sparsely inhabited and the inhabitants are closely linked to other countries such as Russia, Kyrgyzstan, North Korea, Mongolia and Thailand. Due to the strategic nature of these territories, if the inhabitants became hostile towards the national government, it would result in a crisis for the entire country. Consequently, the minorities hold a political power in the Chinese society.

The protection of minorities is guaranteed under China’s governmental structure. Therefore, the government not only recognizes the 22 provinces in the country, but it also recognizes the five autonomous regions in respect to the five minority nationalities who occupy the regions. The five minority nationalities enjoy political equality in the country although they maintain a distinct identity from the Han people. Additionally, the government is promoting Putonghua as the national language, which is a distinct dialect of Mandarin to accommodate the minorities in the country. Additionally, the government takes measures to protect the economic and social rights of these groups so as to enable them to catch up with the sons of Han. These dynamics will affect TOYOT since a majority of the workers will come from the Chinese population. Therefore, it is important to take note of these minorities so as to provide them with the safeguards as required under the Chinese law.

Technology

Due to the rapid economic growth in the country, more and more people have access to the internet. As a consequence, a majority of the Chinese population has access to a smartphone or other means of accessing the internet. Most of the population with Internet access uses the WeChat application to socialize and also to connect with businesses. The WeChat application offers a native payment method, which is preferred by most of the population since credit cards and other means of online payments are yet to be fully accepted in the country. Therefore, the majority of B2C businesses (business-to-consumer business models) tend to leverage WeChat as their preferred payment gateway in China. The population spends approximately $80 billion on online shopping every year, and with the more than 700 million internet users, TOYOT is bound to gain traction in the economy without investing significantly in marketing and advertising. However, the Chinese consumer, as much as she is keen to conduct business through WeChat, she is wary because of the many reported cases of counterfeit items as well as unscrupulous individuals out to take advantage of consumers. The technological factors in play in the tourism sector include new communication technology that change how people interact with each other online. For instance, WeChat incorporates both textual and visual mediums of communication. The applicaotion lets users share pictures, text and videos in their interaction. TOYOT can leverage these forms of communication through sharing of videos depicting various tourist destinations in Europe to entice potential clients.

Technological Risk

However, the lack of penetration of credit cards in the Chinese market may pose considerable challenges, especially when a Chinese tourist wants to make payments while on tour outside China. He or she either has to load money via the WeChat application, or apply a credit card in the foreign country. Additionally, the fact that the Chinese government wantonly censors Internet access in the country may also hinder the viability of TUYOT. If the government decides to censor the company’s website and its associated application,  that would hamper business leading to considerable constraints and inconveniences to customers who rely on the services offered by the company. Another technological issue that may affect the company is the reliance on Mandarin as the main language of communication. It is highly probable that some of the company’s representatives will speak another language other than Mandarin. Representatives from European nations such as Germany may lack fluency in Mandarin which may occasion the need of a translator to guide the tourists through the country. Translators will add to the overhead costs of running the company.

Implications of PEST Analysis

TOYOT, in its first years in the Chinese tourism industry may find it increasingly difficult to conduct business owing to the economic, cultural and political differences in the country. Firstly, the Chinese people prefer to conduct business with familiar or local companies. Therefore, working with an intermediary may become necessary for TOYOT so as to gain the trust of the Chinese consumers. The intermediary will help build business relations with the population, and while that may take several years, the reward far exceeds the time spent building the relationship. Additionally, government bureaucracy may hinder some of the operations of the company. The struggle between provincial and central government may prevent a considerable challenge especially in relation to the laws of the country.

The Chinese have a peculiar perspective of foreign companies headed by foreigners. They take it as disrespect when a foreigner fails to observe social and official protocols. Since the culture of the country attaches considerable importance to rank in business relations, it is important to observe rank while conducting formal business agendas. Additionally, the Chinese prefer face-to-face communications, and unlike other cultures, they do not discuss business over meals and social events. Another aspect about the Chinese culture is punctuality. The people take punctuality as a virtue, and they always prefer to conduct business with individuals or organizations that keep time. While scheduling meetings, it is imperative to set the agenda early to give the Chinese party adequate time to prepare for the meeting as well as consult technical experts prior to the meeting.

By observing these protocols and appointing an intermediary, TOYOT will be able to overcome the various challenges identified in the PEST analysis. Additionally, the company will place itself on a favorable footing in a country with exponential economic growth, a diverse consumer base, and ultimately consumers who are looking to spend their new found wealth.

Additionally, the language barrier present in the communication between Chinese tourists and company representatives from other countries may present a considerable difficulty in the running of the company’s main business. A large portion of the Chinese population is fluent in Mandarin and its associated dialects. They may not be fluent in English, making communications between them and company representatives considerably difficult. However, this challenge may be overcome by the use of translators.

Strategic Plan

TOYOT, being a new business requires a strategy that ensures quick and efficient growth while assuring business objectives are met. Towards the realization of this goal, the 7 strata framework proves most effective. The underpinnings of the 7 strata framework help in the formulation of the core strategic planning requirements of a company’s mission statement, vision statement, core values, and the establishment of a competitive edge.

According to the framework, a business Mission Statement should first of all incorporate the words the business wants to own in the marketplace. These are the words that help the customers find the business through natural web searches. Owning these words makes the business easily discoverable on Baidu when the targeted customers search for the phrases in the Baidu search engine. TOYOT aims own the phrases “Personalized virtual travel concierge” and “Interactive Eurotrip challenge”. These phrases will therefore be included in the business’ Mission Statement, and they form the business’ one-PHRASE strategy as suggested under the 7 strata framework.

For the core values of the business, the 7 strata framework recommends the inclusion of a unique brand promise, supported by a guarantee to the customer should the company fail to fulfill the promise. TOYOT offers its customers an opportunity to experience pain-free travelling by avoiding tourist traps, getting lost, travel delays, or eating bad food in their travels. The business will deliver on this promise by offering virtual travel assistance through the WeChat mobile phone application.

In regards to TOYOT’s competitive edge, the 7 strata framework emphasizes on leveraging on the defining business phrase to create differentiation. The one-PHRASE strategy outlines how the business delivers its promise to the customer in a unique manner different from the competitors in the market.

Mission Statement

TOYOT aims to be the premier provider of personalized and virtual travel concierge in China offering virtual tours of Europe and other destinations. Through the service, TOYOT aims to back the power to explore to al Chinese tourists by helping them avoid tourist traps and manipulative actions customary of most tourist service providers in the country.

Vision Statement

To become the leading provider of premier virtual travel concierge for Europe and other destinations.

Core Values

TOYOT will make leisure traveling flexible, enjoyable and convenient. The company seeks to give the Chinese tourist the freedom to explore European destinations without the fear of falling into tourist traps, or the constraints presented by other service providers in the industry. The country will achieve this goal by providing virtual assistance to subscribers seeking to travel through Europe and other destinations. The virtual assistance will be offered through the WeChat mobile application platform that is accessible to all Chinese citizens. Through the platform, a Chinese tourist can get directions to places of interest including restaurants, sites to visit, places to meet other Chinese tourists and even transport. What sets the service apart from the other services is the power it gives the tourist. Unlike traditional tour packages, a tourist using the TOYOT application can chose where to go, where to eat, and where to sleep without relying on a service provider. Therefore, the tourist gets to choose his or her own journey as he vacations in Europe or other destinations. Additionally, by offering tourists the flexibility to chose their destinations and other amenities, TOYOT will introduce integrity back into the Chinese tourism industry. Other core values at the company include professionalism, leadership, and exemplary communication

Competitive Advantage

TOYOT has several competitive advantages over other services providers in the Chinese market. The competitive advantages come from the fact that TOYOT is the first travel service provider of its kind in China. Consequently, the business structure provides  enjoying several competitive advantages over other tourism service providers in China owing to its unique structure and implementation. The majority of these advantages are as a direct result of the company’s reliance on the WeChat application. WeChat has more than 700 million active users daily. Using the application as the basis of communication therefore guarantees TOYOT a large audience daily, which augurs well for the company’s marketing goals. Additionally, the application acts as a source of targeted leads without the traditional expense associated with lead generation. Traditional service providers in the tourism industry rely on expensive means of lead generation such as buying subscriber lists from tourism related blogs and websites. However, TOYOT can leverage on the free lead generation capability offered by WeChat to reduce its initial investment in marketing and lead generation, giving the company considerable advantage as a new entrant in the Chinese tourism sector. Another advantage of using the WeChat application comes from the fact that the application integrates a native payment option. Therefore, customers can complete transactions with TOYOT from the application which is convenient for the targeted customers. The native payment gateway on WeChat also accepts several currencies making it advantageous for tourists to transact with TOYOT even when they are out of China.

Strategic Plan

In order to achieve the objective of becoming a leading provider of premier virtual travel concierge for Europe and other destinations,TOYOT will implement the following strategies.

Implement Targeted Advertising and Promotion

While the number of outbound tourists in China continues to grow with each year, it is not a guarantee that these tourists will use the services offered by TOYOT. As noted earlier, the Chinese conduct business with people they are familiar with, and since TOYOT is a new service provider in the market, the company must take steps to make its brand familiar with the Chinese consumers. To achieve that goal, the company must carry out targeted advertising during the initial phase aimed at making the brand familiar to the consumers in the company. The company’s business model which is based on WeChat offers an avenue for direct and targeted advertisement. The company must therefore leverage its WeChat account and continuously engage its clientele through WeChat updates and replying to customer queries in a timely manner.

Training and Developing Staff Skills

The majority of the staff who will be working at the company are indigenous Chinese people. They are fluent in Mandarin, the common dialect in China, as well as on WeChat. Consequently, the Chinese staff do not require any form of training in both the Chinese language as well as the Chinese culture. However, the staff from outside China needs training in both the Chinese culture as well as Mandarin. However, the Chinese staff may require further training in the hospitality industry as well as the culture of European nations, and other popular destinations. Language and cultural training for the staff will be scheduled before the incorporation of the company as well as during staff recruitment.

Innovative Pricing Model

TUYOT will leverage the WeChat payment gateway to make it easy for clients to transact with the company. WeChat offers a familiar and convenient payment system that will invoke trust and loyalty in the targeted Chinese population. Additionally,TOYOT will charge a one-time membership fee to all customers which offers an attractive pricing model compared to the model used by other service providers in the market.

Value Added Services

Adding value to the traditional offerings in the tourism industry not only increases the sales for TOYOT, but it also serves to attract customers. The company will help customers find their way across European tourist attractions, while ensuring they are not constrained to the traditional tour-package routine. However, to add value to the service,TOYOT allows the tourist to get real time directions, advice and tips from experienced tour guides right on their mobile phone. By asking a question through the WeChat web application in Mandarin, tourists will get up-to-date answers which are better than the information contained on websites and other tour literature. The TOYOT agents responding to the queries will be well knowledgeable in the various tourist destinations ensuring they provide accurate and useful answer.

Implementing Total Quality Management

The last stage in assuring the company achieves its strategic objects is implementing a total quality management (TQM) process. The process will help in the evaluation of the company’s performance in relation to the satisfaction of the customers. When discrepancies are noticed, TQM will help in their quick resolution as well as implementing measures that help in preventing future occurrences of the issue.

Customer Segments

In order to deliver the best service, it is imperative for TOYOT to define its preferred consumer. Identifying the consumer will help the company better meet their expectations and offer products that meet and exceed their needs.  The customer segment TOYOT serves is mostly homogenous since it consists of tourists who want the flexibility of exploring various tourist destinations in Europe. Additionally, the customer segment has an aptitude for leveraging technology to meet their day to day needs. Therefore, the company will tailor its offerings to utilize the technological abilities of the customer to use the WeChat application so as to find their way around various European destinations. From these characteristics, the customer segment of TOYOT falls in the 18-35 age bracket. The segment is also adventurous and seeks thrills outside their country. The customers are also sociable by virtue of using the WeChat social networking application.  Human Resources Plan

Introduction

Effective human resource management is an essential component of the success of the TOYOT Company. The Human Resource Plan below is a key tool in ensuring human resources are allocated to the company are effectively deployed towards the achievement of the company’s objectives. Accordingly, the TUYOT Human Resource Plan is meant to ensure the employees at the organization receive appropriate training to fill any gaps in knowledge and skill. Additionally, the plan ensures team building strategies are clearly identified and implemented towards the realization of the company’s objectives and goals. When implemented effectively, the plan will act as a basis for aiding the deployment and utilization of human resources throughout the lifetime of the TUYOT company and its operations in China.

The TUYOT Human Resource Plan covers the topics of roles and responsibilities of human resource managers throughout the lifetime of the project, project organizational charts, the implementation of staff management and plans.

Roles and Responsibilities of Team Members

This section describes the roles and responsibilities of members of staff in the TOYOT company. These individuals will be appointed or recruited by the human resource team at the company, or a team designated to handle human resource management on behalf of the company.

Senior Director

The senior director is in charge of planning, directing and overseeing the operations at TOYOT. Additionally, he or she will be in charge of overseeing the operations as well as the implementation of functionalities as defined by the Charter of the company, and the consequent project plans developed over the lifetime of the company. The senior director will also oversee the activities of other managers in the organization as well as serving as the primary liaison between the management and ownership of the company.

Quality Manager

The role of the quality manager is to ensure the employees at TOYOT deliver quality service to the clients. He or she will ensure the staff delivers timely assistance to the clients during their vacations or tours in Europe and other tourist destinations. In such a role, the quality manager is expected to direct and implement requirements necessary for the management and traceability of responsibilities in the daily functions of the company. From the role, he or she should be able to report on the performance of the staff in relation to delivering quality service to the clientele.

Customer Lead Manager

Unlike the other managers, the customer lead manager is responsible for pursuing potential consumers and converting them into customers of TOYOT. He or she will work mostly with the marketing and sales department in an effort of capturing tourism market share in China. The manager will also partner with other managers and departments in the IT department so as to leverage various technological innovations aimed at increasing sales for the company.

Company Stakeholders and Responsibilities

TOYOT has different stakeholders who owe fudiciary duty to the company. The investors in the company must therefore confer fiscal resources for purposes of facilitating the daily operations at the company.

Project Organizational Chart

Tabular Representation of Staff Roles

Roles Human Resource Management Infrastructure Management Customer Acquisition Customer Support Finances
Senior Director I I I I C
Customer Lead Manager     R A  
Operations Manager I I C C A
Human Resource Management A       I

Table Legend

R – Responsible

A – Accountable

C – Consulted

I – Informed

Finance Plan

The finance plan is captured in the accompanying excel document. The financial plan will help the organization meet its objectives of becoming a leader in personalized and virtual travel concierge in China. Additionally, with a finance plan, it is possible to portray the commitment needed from stakeholders during the inception of the company.

The business plan assumes that the Chinese economy is strong, and there are no unforeseen changes or events in the business environment that may make TOYOT obsolete during the lifetime of the business plan. Additionally, the finance plan assumes a 60-day collecting period. It is also assumed that the company will raise $1, 000, 000 in paid-in capital from the various stakeholders.

Sales Forecast

A sales forecast helps businesses approximate future sales. With an accurate approximation, the business can then make informed decisions on how to manage its workforce, cash flow and resources thereby impacting on its short-term and long-term performance. Additionally, a sales forecast helps a business determine the amount of investment capital it needs to raise for its operations. Most businesses make their sales forecast from past sales data, industry data and economic trends. However, for a new business like TOYOT, sales predictions can only be based on less-verified information such as market research and competitive intelligence.

TOYOT’s sales forecast is adopts a market-based prediction model which requires research to project market demand, consumer base and the likelihood of customers to purchase TOYOT’s services for the next five years. According to China’s strategic tourism plan, the country hopes to have more than 170 million outbound tourists by 2020. This number is a representation of the CLSA’s expected growth rate of 9% in international Chinese tourism (CLSA, 2016), which is a sharp decrease from the previously recorded compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18%. The sales forecast makes the assumption that the number of outbound tourists in China will grow by a CAGR 9% for the next 5 years, and consequently, the spending from the tourists will grow by the same percentage.

Conclusion

TOYOT model as a tourism service provider is dependent on a range of variables including the political, economical and cultural disposition of China. As such, the leadership at the company must take into account the various observed changes, as anticipated changes, to envelope the company in the best possible structure to ensure its survival. On the other hand, there are a wide range of factors that contribute to the possible success of TOYOT as an entrant service provider in China’s tourism sector. First of all, the newly generated wealth in the Chinese middle class creates enough disposable income to support outbound tourism for the next few decades. Combined with the fact that China is the largest and fastest growing tourism market, TUYOT will be able to realize considerable income. Another advantageous point for the entry of the company into the Chinese market is the leveraging of WeChat as a tool for both customer acquisition as well as customer support. WeChat is a social networking application that connects over 700 million people daily. Therefore, the company can contact a large number of its targeted clientele through the application, reducing its marketing and advertising expenditure. The application also features an in-built payment system that makes it convenient to receive payments from clients.

 

 

 

 

 

References

Arlt, W. G. (2013). The second wave of Chinese outbound tourism. Tourism Planning & Development10(2), 126-133.

Chow, G. C., & Perkins, D. H. (2014). Routledge Handbook of the Chinese Economy. Routledge.

CLSA. (2016, January 19). Chinese outbound tourism remains on track to reach 200 million by 2020 CLSA survey indicates travellers focused on cultural destinations rather than shopping. Retrieved May 2, 2017, from CLSA: https://www.clsa.com/chinese-outbound-tourism-remains-on-track-to-reach-200-million-by-2020-clsa-survey-indicates-travellers-focused-on-cultural-destinations-rather-than-shopping/

Petroff , A. (2016, March 21). Chinese tourism spending soars 53% to record $215 billion. Retrieved May 27, 2017, from http://money.cnn.com/2016/03/21/news/economy/china-travel-tourism-record-spending/

Reynolds, B. L. (2016). Reform in China. Routledge.

Zuo, B., & Huang, S. (2017). Revisiting the Tourism-Led Economic Growth Hypothesis: The Case of China. Journal of Travel Resear

Project Management (Quality Implementation and Improvement of New Convex Restaurant)

June 17, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Name

Project Management (Quality Implementation and Improvement of New Convex Restaurant)

Professor

Affiliation

Date

 

 

 

Objectives and Stakeholders

In the streets, people need to feed and also take some food with them. Therefore, food outlets and cafes play a great role in sorting out those who do not cook in their homes. The new convex restaurant has come to save the people, and it will supply all the requirements that anyone who need to dish or take food with them wherever they are going. It can accommodate 150-200 customers at a go, most importantly, it is operational during the day and night throughout the week. The primary objectives of this enterprise are to serve those busy personnel who hardly get home to cook, and they need quality food. Therefore, New Convex ensures the services and goods paid for are delivered with no compromise. Few stakeholders work in close collaboration with this restaurant, a branding company that provides adverts about the restaurant and several private financiers who have contributed to rising of the restaurant.

Quality Metrics of the project

Based on the requirements of the customers and the project’s standards, the following parameters have been created for the New Convex restaurant. Mainly they have been reviewed using the feedback that the customers have given out.

Firstly, the number of workers in the restaurant should be adequate to ensure the customers get the services they require efficiently. There are times when the customers are many, for example, in the morning, evening and also during the time when shifts are interchanged. Secondly, there is the use of credit cards. Therefore, there is no need to carry cash whenever one wants to use our services. Also, the rooms are spacious and ever fresh therefore there are no issues of stuffiness.

 

 

Quality requirements.

To give quality services to the clients, the workers ranging from the cashier to the manager should have the customer’s interest at heart. Employing people who have undergone a hospitality course is important because there will be numerous cases of return clients. Proper branding should be done to attract more customers from other streets in the town.

Quality requirements in the project management plan

Some steps ensure the standards, quality control of activities and quality roles and responsibility are met. The services that thus enterprise deliver should meet the agreed-upon standards; the processes are performed well as documented, and any mishap in the line of duty is dealt with appropriately. All the meals should be professionally cooked to meet the customer’s taste. Mostly, the quality should also coincide with the price; it should be realistic.

Quality Assurance Audit

Firstly, rules and regulations audit would be the first step towards ensuring quality is maintained. Documents and posters that are required by the law and other health policies should be well outlined. Accident records should be preserved to ensure new staff learns the risks of some locations to avoid making loopholes.

The facilities that can cause injuries if not well maintained should frequently be checked, hygiene in the restaurant should be at its best, the floors should be free of  the obstacle. The building should undergo the exact contracting process and errors rectified. Auditing should also review on the lighting and parking whether they meet the estimated standards.

Food safety is the main issue that the audit should aim. Managerial steps should be taken to ensure that the food given to the customers is safe. Cases of food poisoning can cause a lot of negative impacts on the restaurant; such errors should be avoided by working with HACCP. It helps to establish consistent food preparation processes and most importantly quality control strategies.

How variance was identified

Variance on business projects is the difference between the actual results after the expenditure and the expected results as calculated. To discover the difference, testing the project can be of great use, or else use the results of a similar project that have been put functioning. To ensure that the results do not frustrate the stakeholders and the project manager, realistic objectives are set and goods initial funds are put in place.

Relevance of project management lifecycle

The objectives should be well outlined in the initial phase; the shareholders can join to come up with absolute aims that will remain relevant in this stage. While planning the strategies in the second period, it is important to work on the guidelines of the objectives. Resources, finances, risks, suppliers will be taken care of at this level well. Execution phase ensures that the objectives are stated in building deliverable, monitoring and controlling. Finally, project closure and completion is the last stage in the cycle of project management. It ensures that the processes remain relevant to the set objectives of the project.

Project Outcome Review

Quality management is the most vital process in the entire process of project management. The results varied from the estimated figures positively. That is, there was a slight difference that came in the real results that were a bit higher than expected. Uncertainties were reduced by increasing the estimated values and expectations which gave an allowance to the final value.

Lesson Learnt

In project management that a businessman carries out, there are some lessons that they learn, and they help them to make better decisions in future projects. In this case, I learned that quality management is the most important step if one wants to have a successful project. The quality of the services one want to offer should coincide with the objectives stated.

Econometrics – EVIEWS Program

June 17, 2017

1a

Consider

This can be re-written as

From the table

But

Hence

This can be done for .

However to obtain the value of

Mean value of

is the margin of error

Taking critical value to be  then

Therefore,

.

1b

Substituting the parameter values in the equation

Lets assume , then

 

 

 

Health Policy in Australia

June 17, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

Health Policy in Australia

Student name

Program

Institution/University

Name of Faculty Advisor

Project Timeline

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HEALTH POLICY IN AUSTRALIA

Introduction

Background Information

According to Blankenship, et al., (2013) alcohol exposure is considered to be the major cause of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). There are a number of more specific descriptors such as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). This condition is a birth defect syndrome, which is associated with exposure to alcohol especially for the unborn children. This condition was first mentioned by dysmorphologists (Jones & Smith, 1973). Behavioral and cognitive dysfunction, anomalies in faces, neurodevelopmental impairments and growth deficiency are among the features of this condition. Substantial literature that exists emphasize that FASD is the major cause of intellectual disability especially in western countries.

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is a major arising crisis that has emerged widely within the concerned institutions; health sector, education sector, criminal justice sector and social care systems of many countries, basically majoring in Australia. Current prevalence occurrences suggest that over one in a hundred children and young aged people have FASDs. This publication has greatly involved professionals, families and academic fields from all over the world that have shared expertise and insights on FASDs. This disorder mostly affects babies who are exposed to alcohol while still in the womb. The consistence of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder symptoms varies whereby some children experiencing them to a far greater extent than others.

 

 

Analysis

FASD greatly comes about when one is pregnant and drinks alcohol throughout the pregnancy period. Alcohol enters the bloodstream and reaches the developing fetus by moving across the placenta, the alcohol consumed causes higher blood alcohol concentrations in the body of the developing baby than in your body due to the fact that the fetus metabolizes alcohol slower than the adult does (Jones & Smith, 1973)   . The Alcohol then goes and interferes with the delivery of oxygen and optimal nutrition to the developing baby (Abel & Sokol, 1987). Exposure to alcohol before birth can harm the development of tissues and organs and cause permanent brain damage in your baby since the immunity of the baby to fight the alcohol is lower hence the baby is highly affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs).

The more one drinks while pregnant, the greater the risk to the unborn baby (Armstrong, 1998, 2003)   . However, any small amount of alcohol consumed puts the baby at a greater risk. The baby’s brain, heart and blood vessels start developing in the early weeks of pregnancy, before one may know she is pregnant. Impairment of facial features like the heart and other organs, including the bones, and the central nervous system may occur due to drinking of alcohol during the first trimester.(May, Blankenship, et al., 2013). This is when these parts of the fetus in the womb are in major stages of development. However, the risk is present at any time during pregnancy provided the formation of fetus begins. The diagnosis of neurodevelopmental disorders currently is being addressed by a foundation called Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (American Psychiatric Association, 2013).

There are physical defects that alien with FASD which include; distinctive facial features that include small eyes, smooth skin surface between the nose and upper art of the lip, deformities of joints, limbs and fingers, slow physical growth before and after birth, vision difficulties and hearing problems, Small head circumference and brain size, Heart defects and problems with kidneys and bones and also brain and central nervous system problems. . (Gavaghan, 2009).   These effects begin to manifest as soon as the infant begins to grow from birth.

This disorder can be prevented or tackled through differently through different instrumental policies. The National FASD action plan is one of the strategies to tackle the disorder. NOFASD Australia has come up with a working group, the ministerial Council on Drug Strategy FASD working group, the Department of Health and Ageing and Drug and Alcohol held a FASD workshop whose goal was to identify potential future directions and strategies to alcohol use in pregnancy. The international charter also focused on the prevention of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. There is set up of centers like Australian indigenous alcohol and other drugs knowledge Centre which also aims at the prevention of FASD. .A project in Australia has also been set up to develop a diagnostic instrument for FASD in Australia. This project included consumers, health professionals, researchers and community members

The major instrumental policy based here is the National FASD plan which has set up many projects to counteract this disorder. The commonwealth government set out a national inquiry to dig deep into the prevention measures, diagnosis and the management of FASD which was to be carried out in the House of Representatives Standing committee on social policy and Legal Affairs. Another project set out is The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) which included doctors, families and communities. The major goal was to increase community awareness of FASD and prevent prenatal exposure to alcohol, to improve the capacity of diagnosis for FASD in Australia, to improve the data collection process so as to understand the extent 0f FASD in Australia. Government of Western Australia Education and Health Standing Committee released its report on FASD as the Invisible Disability in order to create awareness among communities and families

The project majorly bases on advising and encouraging expectant women to a restrain from alcohol during pregnancy and if you’re pregnant and can’t stop drinking, one should ask her primary care doctor or mental health professional for help in the situation before it gets out of control. (Chudley et al., 2005).Since early diagnosis may help reduce the risk of long-term effects for children who already have been infected with fetal alcohol syndrome by letting your child’s doctor know if you drank alcohol while you were pregnant.( Langan & Keynes, 2011)If you have adopted a child or you are acting as a foster parent, it might not occur to you if the biological mother of the child drank alcohol while pregnant — thus it might not occur to you initially that your child may have fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). However, if you notice that your child has difficulties with learning and social behavior, talk with his or her doctor so that the underlying cause might be identified and diagnosed at an early stage (Kobor & Weinberg, 2011). Public health has put in more efforts to curb and prevent FASD problems. (Streissguth (Kobor & et al.1991).

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder may cause greater social impacts on the well-being of an affected child. ( Wilson & Cudd, 2011).   The child may experience difficulties in school due to loneliness and feeling out of social class with other children especially during playtime this disorder in a child might develop trouble in getting along with others in school both in class and in the playground fields (Astley & Clarren, 1999). It causes trouble in adapting to changes or switching from one particular task to another due to slow functioning of the brains since the brains are much affected (Long & Elhai, 2009). The child as a victim also faces the problem of staying on a particular task when assigned to since the slow thinking mind also has divided attention.

The affected child experiences poor concept of time, still mentioned as a social impact that constrains him/her from being accurate in time management throughout their life. They are faced with poor judgmental skills where they cannot make correct hypothesis based on what they are seeing or what is laid ahead of them on actual ground.( May, Tabachnick, et al. 2013) . This is very dangerous since the child is exposed to many risks and dangers that may arise from his poor judgment of issues and events (Astley & Clarren, 1999). This disorder brings along difficulty in planning or working towards a goal in the life of a child since his/her reasoning and thinking abilities are low thus they cannot make useful decisions based on an issue or a goal.

The cost of illness study has examined the impact of FASD on the material  welfare of the of the Australian  society through analysis of direct cost of resources extended to health care and its facilities, law enforcement policies to curb alcohol consumption especially by pregnant mothers, children and youth in care, special education for the affected children, prevention and research, supportive housing, as well as the indirect costs of productivity losses of  individuals with FASD due to their increased premature mortality ( Langan & Keynes, 2011)  . The cost of productivity losses due to premature mortality is the highest contributor to the economic burden of FASD followed by the cost of health care which is also a high economy consumer.

The worldwide incidence of the fetal alcohol spectrum disorder has highly dominated among live births. (Riley & McGee, 2005)   . These incidence rates vary considerably depending on the study site of the research. Conservatively estimated for instance United States, the economic cost associated with FASD-growth retardation, surgical repair in the brains and of organic anomalies, treatment of sensor neural problems and mental retardation is over millions of money per year which is very costly to the economy of the country (Pope, 1995)  . The current treatment costs for FASD-related problems are almost a hundred times that of federal funding for FASD research necessary to form cost-effective early identification and prevention strategies.

Governments have come up with volumetric tax approaches that would have the advantage of generating more income, a proportion of which would be set aside for treatment programs and other approaches to alcohol related harm. A floor price method which involves imposing a lower limit on price per unit of alcohol is also implemented thus preventing the sale of cheap alcohol. This is likely to reduce alcohol consumption and related harm most among the disadvantaged population and young population Evidence-based, cost-effective and high-impact policy measures which have been implemented by various governments are also available to help prevent FASD. The three best buys policies all help to reduce overall level of alcohol consumption in a population and alcohol’s physical, social, financial and psychological existence in communities, families and societies.

Apart from price, there is another determinant of alcohol consumption which is its ready availability including the take away trading hours. Such restrictions have strictly been applied in many places and have helped in the reduction of excessive and pure alcohol thereby causing a decline in alcohol related harm problems and alcohol related offences. Home visiting programs have been organized that assist women from disadvantaged families by two strategies of which are helping women who want to become pregnant avoid alcohol and helping those who are consuming alcohol to avoid becoming pregnant. This helps in reducing the risk of a child getting the FASD.

These alcohol control measures have been proven to be cost-effective. In addition, there are other preventive measures which include the provision of quality information and services, including information on the effects of alcohol on health outcomes for expectant women and unborn infants. Improved access to a better diagnostic system and interventions to help people with FASD and their families to have a better quality life is among the highly encouraged approaches. Better early diagnosis and appropriate interventions can help to reduce and also avoid secondary disabilities and enable people with FASD to work and have families with fewer struggles and constrains

In many countries, the alcohol norm has to be changed and myths about alcohol have to be revised. The alcohol industry is aggressively availing alcohol into all aspects of life, thus making it more and more difficult for communities and societies to choose to live and stay free from alcohol. Facts show that pregnancy is really one of the phases in lives that should be alcohol free.  Therefore, activities to challenge and completely change the alcohol norm are important addition to the efforts to prevent FASD.

Conclusion

In conclusion, accurate and ground based data on the prevalence of FASD is needed in order to come up with prevention strategies and services. In the present state there is no requirement to report FASD nationally and alcohol use by pregnant women is not often screened for the newly developed agreed guidelines for the diagnosis of FASD will help in easily identifying FASD and providing early management and advice to affected families. (Premier, 1973). Further work and research is needed to provide specific support services for FASD and also to increase the health capacities and other services to respond to families affected by FASD.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

Abel, E. L., & Sokol, R. J. Incidence of fetal alcohol syndrome and economic impact of FAS-related anomalies. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, (1987) 19, 51–70.

American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Author. (2013).

Armstrong, E. Diagnosing moral disorder: The discovery and evolution of fetal alcohol syndrome. Social Science & Medicine, (1998) 47, 2025–2042.

Armstrong, E. Conceiving risk, bearing responsibility: fetal alcohol syndrome & the diagnosis of moral disorder. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press (2003).

Astley, S. J., & Clarren, S. K. (1995). A fetal alcohol syndrome screening tool. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 19, 1565–1571.

Astley, S. J. Diagnostic guide for fetal alcohol spectrum disorders: The 4-digit diagnostic code (3rd ed.). Seattle: University of Washington Publication Services. (2004).

Chudley, A. E., Conry, J. C., Cook, J. L., Loock, C., Rosales, T., & Leblanc, N. Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder: Canadian guidelines for diagnosis. Canadian Medical Association Journal, (2005) 172(5 Suppl.), S1–S21.

Gavaghan, C. “You can’t handle the truth”; medical paternalism and prenatal alcohol use. Journal of Medical Ethics, (2009) 35, 300–303

Kobor, M. S., & Weinberg, J. Epigenetics and fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Alcohol Research & Health, (2011) 34, 29–37.

Langan, M., & Keynes, M.  Parental voices and controversies in autism. Disability and Society, (2011) 26, 193–205.

Long, M. E., & Elhai, J. D. Posttraumatic stress disorder’s traumatic stressor criterion: History, controversy, and clinical and legal implications. Psychological Injury and Law, (2009) 2, 167–178.

May, P. A., Blankenship, J., Marais, A.-S., Gossage, J. P., Kalberg, W. O., Joubert, B., … Seedat, S. Maternal alcohol consumption producing fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD): Quantity, frequency, and timing of drinking. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, (2013) 133, 502–512.

May, P. A., Tabachnick, B. G., Gossage, J. P., Kalberg, W. O., Marais, A.-S., Robinson, L. K., … Adnams, C. M. (2013).Maternal factors predicting cognitive and behavioral characteristics of children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, (2013) 34, 314–325.

Pope, K. Logical fallacies in psychology: 22 types. Available from http: //.kspope.com/fallacies/fallacies.php. (1995).

Riley, E. P., & McGee, C. L. Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders: An overview with emphasis on changes in brain and behavior. Experimental Biology & Medicine, (2005) 230, 357–365.

Premier.  Jones, K. L., Smith, D. Recognition of the fetal alcohol syndrome in early infancy. Lancet, (1973) 2(7836), 999–1001.

Price K, Miskelly K. Why Ask Why? Logical Fallacies in the Diagnosis of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. Ethics & Behavior [serial on the Internet]. (2015, Sep), [cited June 4, 2017]; 25(5): 418-426. Available from: Academic Search.

Streissguth, A., Aase, J. M., Clarren, S. K., Randels, S. P., LaDue R. A., & Smith, D. F. Fetal alcohol syndrome in adolescents and adults. Journal of the American Medical Association, (1991) 265, 1961–1967.

Wilson, S. E., & Cudd, T. A. The use of animal models for the study of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Alcohol Research & Health, (2011) 34, 92–98.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reflective paper

June 14, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reflective paper

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Reflective paper

There is so much that I have learned from the module. Things that I previous had no idea that had so much impact on the business. Apart from this, I have also learned that each one of us has something that they can share with the others. For example, I recall that there were things that I could not understand on my own, but through discussing with my group members, I think that I have learned a lot something which was impossible on my own.

Going back to the module, I was assigned the task of analyzing the target and market potential, marketing plan, launch plan as well as design. I gave my best in the presentation, and I think that everyone else in the group was happy with my work. I also to learn a lot through the various researches that I was able to conduct especially about the European market and the global market as a whole. Needless to say, I plan on owning my own business after I have invested enough capital in keeping me on the right path. I know that the information that I got to learn from the module will be good appropriate information on which be able to kick start me on the right path.

Reflecting back on the module as a whole, I think I would like to start by addressing the topics that we as a group were able to discuss in the presentation. Firstly, I learned that the customer is the boss in any business. This means that they have the mandate to either fire someone or to promote someone. By firing someone, it means that the customer by deciding not to buy the products belonging to a particular company, this in most cases translate to the end of that particular product and hence the end of many employees as well as the owner. Additionally, the same customer can decide to promote someone. For example that sales person who is said to sell more can either get a higher commission or they can be promoted to a hire job. These are just some of the examples that I got to learn about the buying power of the customers. Otherwise, there are so many classic examples of business which have indeed been shut down by not selling their products in the market.

Apart from understanding the buying power that the customers is said to have over any business, we also sort to find out the reasons as to why the customers may decide not to buy particular products that are out there in the market or rather, why customers may prefer certain products to others. One of the group members was able to conduct a survey on this, and the results were surprising. There are various reasons that are given as to why customers would prefer to buy or not to buy certain products. However, what caught my attention is the number of customers who feel unappreciated. In other words, there are customers who feel that certain products do not put into consideration the markets needs which translate to the needs of the customers. Additionally, there are those who claim that getting information concerning particular products is quite hard. Thus, they feel frustrated by not getting the information that they need concerning certain products. Consequently, others claim that the only information that is provided about products is that on the packs as well as that is given during promotion and nothing else.

Apart from the issue of customer preferences, there are things that affect the sales or rather the market share of particular products. Such things are inclusive of bad reputation or an image that the customers might have about certain products. It is important to note that company image should be protected by all means. This means that any business should not allow any negative information to lick out to the wrong persons. More so information should not be given to competitors who can use it to their own advantage. A classic example of how social media can be able to destroy a good company image or rather a reputation is that of United Airlines. By the mere fact that a flier was dragged out of the flight by use of excessive force caused uproar in the social media with customers owing not ever to use the airline.

Another thing that companies have to deal with is the challenges that are brought about by the global market. Companies have to re-engineer in line with the needs of the global market otherwise no doing so would mean that they would be pushed out of the market. Additionally, due to technological advancement, business have a larger platform, for example, that of the social media through which they can be able to sell their products. As such there are a variety of choices that they can make with regard to particular products. Additionally, there is increased competition in the UK markets and as such businesses have devised ways of ensuring that they can have a huge share of the global market. As such through R&D as well as continuous innovation, businesses can stay ahead of others in the same market.

I have also learned that doing business is not easy as I previously assumed. One has to be ahead of others in virtually everything that they do. Thus it is always important to learn new trends that are very helpful in understand the different market needs. Additionally, the world is gradually becoming a global village. This means that advertising techniques that can be able to reach virtually every other consumer regardless of whatever part of the world they are in are needed.

Furthermore, everything in today’s business is being inclined to favor the modern day consumer unlike in the past where this would be two-way. For example, software’s are being designed with buyers in mind and not the end user. In short, virtually everything there is on the market today is being created to favor the buyer and not the end user as earlier stated.

I did a lot of research with regard to competitive advantages that our business can have over the others competitors in the same industries. I was able to base my research on a timeline of three years from now. One thing was clear though is the fact that technology is of the essence if any business is to be able to gain a competitive advantage over the others. For example, I was able to find out that in 2019, virtually everything will be done through a messaging app. thus, and this will be able to bring customers and the suppliers on the same platform which means that a lot of problems would be solved by this. For example, it would be easy to solve any problem that could occur much faster. In other words, it means that the supplier would be able to get an immediate feedback regarding their products. Consequently, the supplier or rather the manufacturer will be in a position to act fast if need be. Apart from this, the service app will also be able to eliminate middlemen. This means that the buyers can negotiate on the product price on a one on one basis with the supplier. It further means that through this the supplier will be in a position to fix prices in line with the market needs. Additionally, this will also be able to eliminate long waiting time. That is, the customers can get their goods and services as soon as they order them. It would also mean that the supplier will be able to learn other needs that the buyer might have. Hence, the supplier will be in a position to continually improve on their products.

I was also able to learn more about the global market and especially the UK markets which have divergent needs with regard to what customers want. At first, I thought I knew what customers want out there in the market. But after this module, I admit that there was only very little I knew. For example, depending on the size of business, their needs are valid. For example, take the case of SMEs operating in the UK market and those that are operating let say in the Middle East. It is important t to understand that the size of the labor market in each of these two markets as described above is very different. Thus, what this translates into is that these needs of these markets are bound to be met along these lines. Interestingly though, there is also the millennial markets. It is paramount in understanding the needs of the UK market to put into consideration different demographics such as age, gender and the like. This is very important due to each of these markets happens to have divergent needs.

I was also able to look at the different needs of the global market. A lot of emotional intelligence is needed for leaders to be able to accommodate the different dynamic needs of the global market. This is because virtually every business is competing for a share of the global markets. Thus, business has to devises ways of ensuring that they are not only able to have a larger share and at the same time maintain their share of the market. Hence, businesses are re-engineering towards this, and technological advancements come in handy in helping business to be able to achieve their targets.

I also got to learn about reaching out to audiences which are not very easy. In short, this module was very helpful, and in the future should I consider starting up my business, I think I will be properly furnished in doing so.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Old and New Diplomacy

June 14, 2017

Old and New Diplomacy

Conventional wisdom holds that the main experts providing their nations with specialised information regarding foreign countries are the diplomats. They also offer information on relations with other countries or global affairs (Geoffrey, 2011). However, diplomacy in this dispensation is developing faster. Today, the knowledge and contribution which helps in shaping public policy are offered by different non-state across including NGOs, churches, multinational firms, and celebrities among others. The old diplomacy is now changing. On the other hand, ambassadorial diplomacy is not the main statecraft anymore. More significance has been attached to political communication between nations and between nations and the public. Though the old diplomacy is still in existence, it has to work with the new actors in the global arena. The new diplomatic strategies are leading to increased transparency (Barston, 2006). However, when it comes to diplomacy, increased transparency might not often be desirable. This paper analyses the extent to which non-state actors can be considered as diplomats in their own right and their impact on the conduct of diplomacy.

International relations entail the relations between countries. For those who view the world from a state-cantered approach, non-state actors play a secondary role compared to national governments (Jean-Robert, 2008). Both the state and non-state actors live in two separate worlds where little interaction occurs between them. However, so as to understand political change, the relation between countries and other actors must be analysed. Companies and NGOs wield a lot of influence in the global system. Others only operate in one nation while some are international non-governmental organisations like Amnesty International. The culmination of the Cold War was a major political change as regards the transformation of the state. According to Viola (2008), this transformation implied a relocation or decline of the old foundations of state power. This paved the way for new actors to get into the state of global politics. It now became possible for a state to increasingly work with transnational organisations, actors in the civil society and private business. The transformation of the state triggered a change in the nature of diplomacy. The main impact was an increase in the number of non-state actors involved in diplomacy. One of the most significant organisations through which NGOs could access international diplomacy is the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). There has been increased growth in NGOs from the beginning of the 1990s.the ECOSOC has accorded the NGOs consultative status. Viola (2008) noted that more than three thousand organisations enjoy this status today. These NGOs are taking part in conferences (Kelley, 2010). For instance, for the very first time in the year 1996, the World Trade Organisation permitted more than a hundred NGOs to participate in a ministerial conference.

The number increased to more than 750 during the Geneva conference that was held in 2008. On the same note, Viola (2008) is quick to point out the numerous NGOs that have forged working relationships with different governments and programs. There is great diversity in the diplomatic activity undertaken by the non-state actors. First and foremost, they serve as advisers when it comes to government delegations. Furthermore, they act as observers, gather information regarding the views of the public and even work as lobbyists (Brian, 2011). Non-state actors lack a formal voice in the area of diplomacy. However, they are changing the old diplomacy. Diplomacy in this dispensation has grown out of the state and beyond it. Diplomats were traditionally perceived as experts who provided specialised information to their countries for dealing with tough challenges (Langhorne, 2005). However, this information is increasingly offered by the non-state actors like NGOs. In other instances, NGOs take part in negotiations. They serve as watchdogs in the course of these negotiations. They are able to address delegates in the process and have access to information on these meetings.

Despite this, there are roles that cannot be undertaken by diplomats. One of them is mobilizing public opinion. The other is raising awareness. Non-state actors stand closer to the people (Berridge, 2010). In addition, they can ensure that civil society is part and parcel of the agenda setting process. Their independency of governments is the main strength associated with these non-state actors. Moreover, they can offer local and specialised information to the states, a task that was previously undertaken by the diplomats. It appears that the non-state actors are now taking the place of the diplomats. However, it must be emphasised that this is not the case. It is not in dispute that these changes are ensuring that diplomacy becomes transparent (Geoffrey, 2004). However, it does not say much about its ability to operate in an effective manner. There is need to be critical given that more transparency does not necessarily translate into positive results. It could impact the manner in which negotiators act. In this regard, diplomats strive to be flexible and welcoming to creative solutions during negotiations and this increases the probability of agreement. According to Viola (2008), the public lacks influence in private negotiations, thus it restricts the political accountability. Furthermore, it is important to consider that non-state actors do not represent a large section of the population. In other words, they only represent a small special interest group. The other problem that must be taken into consideration is accountability. As opposed to democratically elected governments that must be open and above board in all that they do, non-state actors are not accountable. This might trigger challenges when government negotiators are limited by groups that do not represent a large section of the population (Viola, 2008). It is, however, important to understand who the new diplomats are and their impact.

The new diplomats could be defined as an entrepreneurial component of the civil society undertaking diplomatic roles by embracing their behaviour. According to Kelley (2010), they can shape and impact state behaviour. This can be achieved by setting the agenda and taking part in negotiations at greater levels. It is also important to establish whether the actions of the non-state actors can be referred to as diplomacy. Though they are not official, they demonstrate that they are skilful in their operations. Moreover, they show that they are effective in striking a balance between official and unofficial settings (Richard, 2005). This is what distinguishes them from advocates. New diplomats as has been established include NGOs, churches, multinational firms, religious leaders and celebrities among others. They merge moral legitimacy on one hand with access to political change on the other. In addition, they are able to act where governments show failure. New diplomats pose a major problem to state dominance in the diplomatic arena and must be viewed as such. They can mobilise the public and deal with issues that are not in line with the national goals of the state, and concentrate on international issues. There are similarities shared by the new and the old diplomacy, though are very distinct. Where old diplomats have the task of forging coalitions between countries, new diplomats are operating within transnational advocacy chains through the use of their information and values to encourage political action. Furthermore, they try to acquire the help of powerful institutions. The concern over legitimacy is crucial. As noted by Kelley (2010), new diplomats are motivated by moral legitimacy which is provided by a collective will to overhaul the ethical pillars of states and transform state behaviour in a manner that is acceptable to the represented movement.

Old diplomats are supported by political legitimacy in addition to their link to the rule of law. So as to get political representation, non-state actors like the NGOs and the celebrities, derive their legitimacy by striving to achieve desirable goals (Langhorne, 2005). Given that access to information now easier compared to the past, it is also easier to establish networks. In this regard, the public will offer its legitimacy on the basis of what is desirable. The other shortfall of the new diplomacy as noted earlier is their accountability. It is important to understand who is responsible the actions of the new diplomats go wrong. When dealing with pace and efficiency, non-state actors have an advantage over the old diplomats. A perfect case in point of the achievement made by a diplomatic process that excludes the state was the 1997 Ottawa Treaty. Here, representatives from 156 countries and NGOs took part in the conference. They represented a coalition of global social action network (Kelley, 2010). The treaty was spearheaded by Princess Diana of Wales. She launched a strong campaign against landmines.

The International Campaign to Ban Landmines had established a network of more than a thousand NGOs from more than sixty nations. This network created political pressure for nations to accept and support the ban. Before the creation of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, the issue was never placed on the international agenda (Kelley, 2010). Perhaps this would have been the case had the International Campaign to Ban Landmines been absent. Another question to be addressed is whether the non-state actors mark the end of the old diplomacy. This answer is yes. However, it must be emphasised that the old methods of diplomacy are still in existence and not being replaced. There is cooperation between the old and new diplomacies. The old type of diplomacy has been able to integrate the new type. This cooperation is expected to grow stronger in future.

In conclusion, non-state actors should be viewed as an addition to the old diplomacy and an integral component of public diplomacy. Their functions in the international system are quite distinct from official diplomats. There are only a few activities of the non-state actors which interfere with the old diplomatic culture. Therefore, there is ground to believe that involvement of non-state actors in diplomacy poses a threat to official diplomacy. This is attributed to the fact that public diplomacy had been introduced earlier. It was meant to impact or inform public opinion via media, TV, and radio. By attracting attention, non-state actors can create the political will to do something about an issue. Moreover, the presence of non-state actors in the global arena demonstrates the adaptive quality associated with diplomacy. Non-state actors have defined a sense of purpose, the ability to network, access to global leaders and a global reach. This implies that they can break down diplomatic barriers. There is one area that they differ from official diplomacy. This is in the area of representation. In other words, they are not formal diplomats. The question, therefore, is who they represent. Therefore, it is not possible for them to claim that they are representing a certain group or fighting a certain cause. Official diplomats are able to work with professionals. However, they lack skills in attracting the attention of the public. Furthermore, they operate through government agencies instead of using extended networks. Based on this, they complement one another.  Most important is that official diplomacy requires this type of non-state actors in order to discharge their tasks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

Barston, R 2006, Modern Diplomacy (3th Edition), Pearson Education Limited: Essex.

Berridge, G 2010, Diplomacy: Theory and Practice. 4th ed. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010

Brian, H 2011, ‘Non-State Actors and the Transformation of Diplomacy’,
Geoffrey, A 2011, Contemporary Diplomacy, Polity; 1 edition (February 7, 2011 )
Richard, L 2005, The Diplomacy of Non-State Actors, in Diplomacy and Statecraft, Vol. 16, No. 2, 2005

Geoffrey, W 2004, Polylateralism and New Modes of Global Dialogue in Christer Jönsson and Richard Langhorne (eds), Diplomacy: Volume III: Problems and Issues in Contemporary Diplomacy, [online], Available at https://www.un-ngls.org/orf/pdf/polylateralism_and_new_%20modes_of_global_dialogue.pdf [accessed 9 March 2017]

Jean-Robert, L 2008, The Dynamics of Diplomacy, Lynne Rienner Pub.

Kelley, J 2010, The New Diplomacy: Evolution of a Revolution, Diplomacy & Statecraft, 21: pp. 286 – 305

Langhorne, R 2005, The Diplomacy of Non-State Actors, Diplomacy & Statecraft 16.2(2005): pp. 331-39

Viola, L 2008, The Reinvention of Diplomacy, WZB-Mitteilungen, 121, pp. 22–25

“Broken BRICS: why the rest stopped rising”

June 14, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BROKEN BRICS: WHY THE REST STOPPED RISING

 

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Introduction

Over the last few decades, the concept of the rise of the rest has been the most talked-about trend in the global economy. This was driven by what has come to be perceived as the rise of the economies of many developing countries to the same par with the economies of their more developed peers. According to (Sharma, 2012, 56), the prime movers of this new club has been the four worlds emerging market countries popularly referred to as the BRICs and they include Brazil, Russia, India, and China. According to the school of thought on the experience of these nations, the world is witnessing a once in lifetime shift and the perception is that, the key players in the developing world are economically catching up with or even surpassing their counterparts in the developed world based on the different forecasts that took the developing world’s relatively higher growth rates since the middle of the last decades. The projections seem to extend them right into the near future in comparison with the predicted sluggish or stagnant economic growth in the developed countries as evidenced by the Unites states as well as other advanced and industrialized nations, especially in the western Europe.

For example, such exercises supposedly proved that China was definitely on the verge of overtaking the US as the world largest or leading economy. In fact, already there are emerging schools of thought that feel that China has already overtaken the US as the world’s largest economy even though the US economy is still more than twice as large while in the perspective of the per capita income it is as seven times as high. According to  (Rodgers, 2016, pa. 112), the notion is given prominence by the previous straight line projections of economic trends as the earlier forecasts in the 1980s that projected that Japan would be sooner than later become the world’s number one economy. However, this eventually turned out to be equivalent to throwing cold water on such extravagant predictions. For instance, since the year 2009 when the world economy began to experience its worst, the Chinese economic growth has slowed down sharply from double digits to seven % and at times even less while the rest of the BRICs have also tumbled since the year 2008. In the year 2008, the annual growth of the Brazilian economy has been on the decline from 4.5 % to two percent, India from 9 % 6 % while Russia has slid from 7 % to 3.5 %. None of this can be surprising since it has always been hard for any nation to sustain a rapid growth for more than a decade and the unusual circumstances of the last decade did not make it easy either for any of the nations. Moreover, all these nations were coming off a crisis-ridden decade of the 1990s that was coupled by a general global flood of easy money owing to the emerging markets that fueled a mass upward swing that made each economy virtually a winner. For example, by the year 2007, only three economies in the world recorded a negative economic growth as the prevailing global economic climate made that all recessions were cleared out of the international scene.

However, at the moment, the emerging markets are facilitating less flow of foreign money forcing the global economy to rerun to its normal state of churn under which many laggards prevail alongside a few winners that re rising from unexpected places. The combined fact of this has been a striking shift under which an economic power is brewing and thus a flow of money is channeled towards the rising stars which are projected to create a new reshape of the global balance of economic power.

The “Broken BRICS: why the rest stopped rising”

First, according to some reliable schools of economic thought, the notion of a wide-ranging convergence between the developed world and the developing world may, after all, be a wild goose myth. For example of the 180 world nations tracked by the international monetary funds, only 35 of them can be correctly classified as developed while the rest constitute emerging or developing markets. However, the majorities of these nations have remained over the category of emerging or developing nations for many decades and look set to remain in the same position for many more years or decades to come. This reality has been well captured by a Harvard economist, Danni Rodrik well through his demonstration that, before the year 2000, there was no foreseeable convergence between the emerging markets and that of the developed world. This was clearly evidenced by the per capita income gap that existed between the advanced nations and the developing nations that keep on widening from the 1950s to the year 2000. During this period, there were very few countries if any that shown real signs of catching up with the developed economies from the developing economies.

However, this aspect was not applicable to the oil states within the Gulf, the southern Europe nations after the World War II as well as the economic tigers of the East Asia. However, it was not until after the year 2000 that the emerging markets as whole begun to show some signs of catching up. However, it was unfortunately that after the year 2011, the per capita income gap or the difference between the rich and the developing nations had grown back to where it was during the 1950s decade.  Nonetheless, this should not be treated entirely as a negative read but rather as a simple historical representation of the economic state of the emerging markets. Since then, however, the course of any given decade since the 1950s has on average witness only a third of the emerging markets grow at an annual rate of at least 5 % or more though less than one-fourth of them have kept the growth rate for more than two decades while alone tenth for at least three decades. However significantly it is notable that only Malaysia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea have kept this growth rate for more than two decades. Based on this statistics, the odds were against the Brazil experiencing a full decade of a sustained growth rate of over over 5 % long before the current signs of a slow down over the BRICs while Russia was also affected.

Several other emerging markets have not been able to gain any momentum for a sustained growth while others have had their progress stalled soon after reaching the model income status. For example, both Malaysia and Thailand appeared rightly on the course to make the cut for rich nations but could not owe to the Asian economic meltdown of 1997 to 1998 occasioned by crony capitalism, excessive debts in addition to other economic factors such as overpriced currencies. Due to these, their growth rates have been disappointing since then. On the other hand, during the later 1960s Myanmar, then Burma, the Philippines as well as Sri Lanka appeared on the verge of emerging as the next Asian economic tigers but soon falter badly and could not even reach the middle-class average income of $ 5,000 in the prevailing dollars terms. Instead, they failed over the general rule, to sustain this growth which is most likely set to reassert itself over the coming decades.

Nonetheless, during the opening decade of the 21st century, the emerging markets, in general, emerged as the celebrated pillars of the global economy at a rate that makes it hard to forget the functioning of the new concept of the emerging markets within the financial world (Coffey, 2013). For example by the mid-1980s, the wall street had already begun tracking them as distinct asset class referred to as the exotic which saw many emerging markets on their stock markets to foreigners for the first time. For example, Taiwan did in 1991, India in 1992, South Korea in 1993 while Russia in 1995. This saw the rush in of foreign investors who unleashed a boom of over 600 percent over the emerging markets stock prices between 1987 and 1994 measured in dollars. In addition over this period, the level of money invested in the emerging markets rose from less than 1 % to close to 8 % of the whole global stock market value.

Nevertheless, this decade was ended with an economic crisis within the nations of Mexico and Turkey between thaw years 1994 and 2002 while in general, the entire markets of the developing markets lost over half of their value as it shrank to below 4 % of the total global stock value. In addition, between the year 1987 and the year 2002, the share of the global GDP in the developing countries fell from 23 % to 20 % with the exception of China which doubled its share to 4.5 % thereby reducing the issue of hot emerging global; markets into a story about one country.

All was not lost and by 2003, a second global boom began to rise within the emerging markets when their markets began to again take off a group and their global share of the GDP began to rise rapidly from 20 % to 34 % that is represented today and is attributable to the role played by the rising value of their currencies as well as their share of the global stock market that rose from a total of less than four percent to more than 10 %. In addition, this was partially attributed to the recovery in the year 2009 of the huge losses that were incurred during the global financial crash of the year 2008 and which has since been on a slow recovery path. In addition, all the emerging markets have been undergoing a period defined by moderate growth over the general developing world characterized by the return of the boom bus cycle as well as the breakup of the herd behavior within the emerging market countries which is taking shape.

For example, even in the absence of the easy money and the further forms of the blue optimism that helped to fuel the global investments of the last decade, the stock markets in the developing countries, in general, are poised to deliver more measured though uneven returns. For example within these markets, capital gains averaged 34 % between the  year 2003 and 2007 and look poised to pick to at least 10 5 over the coming decades when the general earnings in growth rates and other exchange rate values over the large emerging markets attain a limited scope for additional improvements following the last decades strong performance.

In the dynamics of the entire global economy, no other idea has been a subject of more muddled thinking as the issues of BRICs. First, the concept represents the largest economies in their respective regions while the big four emerging global markets have very little in common. For example, they generate their economic growth in entirely different and at times competing for ways. For instance, while Brazil and Russia are major consumers of energy that leads to benefits from high energy process, India as high energy consumer suffers from them. As a result except in prevalence of unusual circumstances, such as those witnessed over the last decade, the BRICs are unlikely to grow in unison. For example with the exception of China, the other members of the BRICs family have very little ties in terms of political strategic interest or common foreign policy interest.

However, they find themselves lumped together in a common thinking acronyms which once it catches on, it may mislead analysts in a general worldview that may soon grow obsolete. For example in the words of (Nesterov, 2016, pa. 45), in recent years, Russia’s economy and stock market has been among the weakest within the emerging global markets due to undue dominance by an oil-rich class of billionaires who control a combined assets equaling over 20% of the nation’s GDP which was by far the largest share held by a super-rich class in any wolf major economy. None the less, though deeply out of the balance, Russia remains a member of the BRICs through this may be attributed to less meaningful roles such as making the name sound better. There is a greater need for both analysts and investors to remain more flexible  as well as historically in the use of the name since other countries in the developing and emerging world such as the Venezuela in the 1950s, Pakistan in the 1960s as well as Iraq in the 1970s  have always shown the capability to post an economic growth of that can be sustained for a decade or two  but their stability has always been elusive since they have always been tripped by one threat or another such as war, financial crisis, poor and bad leadership as well as general complacency.

However away for the BRICs, though they are not entirely excluded, the current fad in global economic forecasting needs a further projection into the future which no one can authentically claim they will be around to provide the account. this glim approach seems likely to say; for example during the 17th century, when combined China and India could account for half of the entire global GDP and the world was then seemingly poised to welcome an approaching Asian century, with a reasserted preeminence, it eventually proved that the longest period that one can assertively find a clear economic pattern within the global economic cycle is reasonable around a decade. Therefore it may be that far all typical business cycles emerge and last about five years beginning with the bottom of one downturn to the beginning of the next which most of the investors adopting a limited perspective to either one or two business cycles.

In this regard, (Ikenberry 2017, pa. 109), advances the view that, most pundits have adopted the view that, beyond such global economic cycles, forecasts are basically rendered obsolete by the unanticipated appearance of new competitors, the emergence of new technologies as well as the emergence of new political environments. For instance, the world over the majority of the CEO and other major investors still limit their strategic plans and strategies to three or five or to utmost seven years before judging the results over the same time frames; Based on this, in the forthcoming decade, it’s correctly projected that the United States, Japan, and Europe may most likely suffer a slowed growth. However, this stagnation may be less bad in comparison with the entire state of the overall global economy which will be much slower as a growth rate of relative three to four % a slowdown which is already underway in China and perhaps much deepens for such economies as they continue to mature.

Currently, China’s economy is enjoying the benefits of a reasonable bigger population which is simply too big as well as gain too fast for the economy of the country to remain on the fast economic growth that is as rapid as it has been. In addition, the country has me that over half of the population moving into the urban cents driving the country closer to the economic point that economists generally referred to as the Lewis turning point. This is a point at which a country’s surplus labor movement into the urban areas from the rural areas is complete exhausted.

According to (Kees 2014, pa. 67), The Lewis point of any countries can be occasioned by tow main points; a heavy migration into the cities over a span of two decades or the shrinking of the general workforce such as produced by the policy of one child in China. Eventually, this makes sense in the perspective of the many Americans today that Asian juggernauts are swiftly overtaking the US market performance largely owing to the country’s periodic cycles of paranoia that can only be comparable to the hype that drove the Japan’s ascent in the 1980s. therefore as an economic growth takes root in China’s as well as in the more advanced and industrialized world, such countries are projects to begin to buy less from their export driven peers such as the brazil, Malaysia, Taiwan, Russia and the Mexico thereby significantly impacting on the world economic boom that has been booming over the last decade leading to the tripling of the average balance of trade within the emerging markets to a whopping 6 %.Based on the GDP, Nonetheless, this has been declining since the year 2008 to the normal rate of 2 %. As a result, the mainly export-driven emerging markets need to find a new way for achieving and driving strong growth as the investors recognize that reality of this that many will most likely not do so.

Over the first half of 2012, the distribution of the value between the best performing and the worst performing major emerging stock markets around the world shot up sharply to over 35 %. However, over the next few years, the likelihood of the new normal growth rates within the emerging markets to resemble those of the 1950s and the 1960s are much higher when the general global growth rates averaged 5 % in a race that left many nations lagging behind. However, this did not necessarily imply the reemergence of the 1970s period emerging nations that were overly characterized by uniformly underdeveloped nations. First, in the words of (Beckley,2009, pa. 67), over those years, some of the emerging markets such as Taiwan and the South Korea were beginning to generally experience a boom in their economies but their success was however overshadowed by the poor performance of the larger economies such as India. This does not necessarily lead to a differentiated economic performance over the emerging market countries since experience has proved that it is always easier to grow fast from a low starting point, therefore, making sense to make the comparison between different income classes.

For instance, among the countries with a general per capita incomes in the range of $ 20,000 to $ 50 000, only two have this far recorded a good chance in matching or exceeding 3 % growth rate over their annual economic growth sustained for over the next decade.

 

 

Bibliography

Sharma, R. 2012. “Broken BRICS: Why the Rest Stopped Rising”, Foreign Affairs, 9(16).

Rogers, Z., 2016. Responsibilities in International Relationship: US foreign Policy Perspectives.

Kees van der Pijl. 2014. The Eurasian Union and the BRICs under attack, (Online) Available at: http://www.academia.edu/31325882/The_Eurasian_Union_and_the_BRICS_under_attack

Ikenberry, J., 2017. International Politics, (Online) Available at: http://scholar.princeton.edu/sites/default/files/gji3/files/wws_541_2015_final.pdf

Nesterov, A., 2016. Why Russia needs the BRICs, (Online) Available at: http://www.academia.edu/6843037/Why_Russia_needs_the_BRICS

Coffey, J., 2013. The Great Convergence, (Online), available at: http://www.unc.edu/depts/diplomat/item/2013/0105/bk/book05_coffey_convergence.html

Beckley, M., 2009. American Primacy, (Online) Available at: http://as.tufts.edu/politicalscience/sites/all/themes/asbase/assets/documents/syllabi/2015spring/ps189-19.pdf

 

 

“Broken BRICS: why the rest stopped rising”

June 14, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BROKEN BRICS: WHY THE REST STOPPED RISING

 

Name:

Institution:

Course:

Date:


 

Introduction

Over the last few decades, the concept of the rise of the rest has been the most talked-about trend in the global economy. This was driven by what has come to be perceived as the rise of the economies of many developing countries to the same par with the economies of their more developed peers. According to (Sharma, 2012, 56), the prime movers of this new club has been the four worlds emerging market countries popularly referred to as the BRICs and they include Brazil, Russia, India, and China. According to the school of thought on the experience of these nations, the world is witnessing a once in lifetime shift and the perception is that, the key players in the developing world are economically catching up with or even surpassing their counterparts in the developed world based on the different forecasts that took the developing world’s relatively higher growth rates since the middle of the last decades. The projections seem to extend them right into the near future in comparison with the predicted sluggish or stagnant economic growth in the developed countries as evidenced by the Unites states as well as other advanced and industrialized nations, especially in the western Europe.

For example, such exercises supposedly proved that china was definitely on the verge of overtaking the US as the world largest or leading economy. In fact, already there are emerging schools of thought that feel that China has already overtaken the US as the world’s largest economy even though the US economy is still more than twice as large while in the perspective of the per capita income it is as seven times as high. According to  (Rodgers, 2016, pa. 112), the notion is given prominence by the previous straight line projections of economic trends as the earlier forecasts in the 1980s that projected that Japan would be sooner than later become the world’s number one economy. However, this eventually turned out to be equivalent to throwing cold water on such extravagant predictions. For instance, since the year 2009 when the world economy began to experience its worst, the Chinese economic growth has slowed down sharply from double digits to seven % and at times even less while the rest of the BRICs have also tumbled since the year 2008. In the year 2008, the annual growth of the Brazilian economy has been on the decline from 4.5 % to two percent, India from 9 % 6 % while Russia has slid from 7 % to 3.5 %. None of this can be surprising since it has always been hard for any nation to sustain a rapid growth for more than a decade and the unusual circumstances of the last decade did not make it easy either for any of the nations. Moreover, all these nations were coming off a crisis-ridden decade of the 1990s that was coupled by a general global flood of easy money owing to the emerging markets that fueled a mass upward swing that made each economy virtually a winner. For example, by the year 2007, only three economies in the world recorded a negative economic growth as the prevailing global economic climate made that all recessions were cleared out of the international scene.

However, at the moment, the emerging markets are facilitating less flow of foreign money forcing the global economy to rerun to its normal state of churn under which many laggards prevail alongside a few winners that re rising from unexpected places. The combined fact of this has been a striking shift under which an economic power is brewing and thus a flow of money is channeled towards the rising stars which are projected to create a new reshape of the global balance of economic power.

The “Broken BRICS: why the rest stopped rising”

First, according to some reliable schools of economic thought, the notion of a wide-ranging convergence between the developed world and the developing world may, after all, be a wild goose myth. For example of the 180 world nations tracked by the international monetary funds, only 35 of them can be correctly classified as developed while the rest constitute emerging or developing markets. However, the majorities of these nations have remained over the category of emerging or developing nations for many decades and look set to remain in the same position for many more years or decades to come. This reality has been well captured by a Harvard economist, Danni Rodrik well through his demonstration that, before the year 2000, there was no foreseeable convergence between the emerging markets and that of the developed world. This was clearly evidenced by the per capita income gap that existed between the advanced nations and the developing nations that keep on widening from the 1950s to the year 2000. During this period, there were very few countries if any that shown real signs of catching up with the developed economies from the developing economies.

However, this aspect was not applicable to the oil states within the Gulf, the southern Europe nations after the World War II as well as the economic tigers of the East Asia. However, it was not until after the year 2000 that the emerging markets as whole begun to show some signs of catching up. However, it was unfortunately that after the year 2011, the per capita income gap or the difference between the rich and the developing nations had grown back to where it was during the 1950s decade.  Nonetheless, this should not be treated entirely as a negative read but rather as a simple historical representation of the economic state of the emerging markets. Since then, however, the course of any given decade since the 1950s has on average witness only a third of the emerging markets grow at an annual rate of at least 5 % or more though less than one-fourth of them have kept the growth rate for more than two decades while alone tenth for at least three decades. However significantly it is notable that only Malaysia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea have kept this growth rate for more than two decades. Based on this statistics, the odds were against the Brazil experiencing a full decade of a sustained growth rate of over over 5 % long before the current signs of a slow down over the BRICs while Russia was also affected.

Several other emerging markets have not been able to gain any momentum for a sustained growth while others have had their progress stalled soon after reaching the model income status. For example, both Malaysia and Thailand appeared rightly on the course to make the cut for rich nations but could not owe to the Asian economic meltdown of 1997 to 1998 occasioned by crony capitalism, excessive debts in addition to other economic factors such as overpriced currencies. Due to these, their growth rates have been disappointing since then. On the other hand, during the later 1960s Myanmar, then Burma, the Philippines as well as Sri Lanka appeared on the verge of emerging as the next Asian economic tigers but soon falter badly and could not even reach the middle-class average income of $ 5,000 in the prevailing dollars terms. Instead, they failed over the general rule, to sustain this growth which is most likely set to reassert itself over the coming decades.

Nonetheless, during the opening decade of the 21st century, the emerging markets, in general, emerged as the celebrated pillars of the global economy at a rate that makes it hard to forget the functioning of the new concept of the emerging markets within the financial world (Coffey, 2013). For example by the mid-1980s, the wall street had already begun tracking them as distinct asset class referred to as the exotic which saw many emerging markets on their stock markets to foreigners for the first time. For example, Taiwan did in 1991, India in 1992, South Korea in 1993 while Russia in 1995. This saw the rush in of foreign investors who unleashed a boom of over 600 percent over the emerging markets stock prices between 1987 and 1994 measured in dollars. In addition over this period, the level of money invested in the emerging markets rose from less than 1 % to close to 8 % of the whole global stock market value.

Nevertheless, this decade was ended with an economic crisis within the nations of Mexico and Turkey between thaw years 1994 and 2002 while in general, the entire markets of the developing markets lost over half of their value as it shrank to below 4 % of the total global stock value. In addition, between the year 1987 and the year 2002, the share of the global GDP in the developing countries fell from 23 % to 20 % with the exception of China which doubled its share to 4.5 % thereby reducing the issue of hot emerging global; markets into a story about one country.

All was not lost and by 2003, a second global boom began to rise within the emerging markets when their markets began to again take off a group and their global share of the GDP began to rise rapidly from 20 % to 34 % that is represented today and is attributable to the role played by the rising value of their currencies as well as their share of the global stock market that rose from a total of less than four percent to more than 10 %. In addition, this was partially attributed to the recovery in the year 2009 of the huge losses that were incurred during the global financial crash of the year 2008 and which has since been on a slow recovery path. In addition, all the emerging markets have been undergoing a period defined by moderate growth over the general developing world characterized by the return of the boom bus cycle as well as the breakup of the herd behavior within the emerging market countries which is taking shape.

For example, even in the absence of the easy money and the further forms of the blue optimism that helped to fuel the global investments of the last decade, the stock markets in the developing countries, in general, are poised to deliver more measured though uneven returns. For example within these markets, capital gains averaged 34 % between the  year 2003 and 2007 and look poised to pick to at least 10 5 over the coming decades when the general earnings in growth rates and other exchange rate values over the large emerging markets attain a limited scope for additional improvements following the last decades strong performance.

In the dynamics of the entire global economy, no other idea has been a subject of more muddled thinking as the issues of BRICs. First, the concept represents the largest economies in their respective regions while the big four emerging global markets have very little in common. For example, they generate their economic growth in entirely different and at times competing for ways. For instance, while Brazil and Russia are major consumers of energy that leads to benefits from high energy process, India as high energy consumer suffers from them. As a result except in prevalence of unusual circumstances, such as those witnessed over the last decade, the BRICs are unlikely to grow in unison. For example with the exception of china, the other members of the BRICs family have very little ties in terms of political strategic interest or common foreign policy interest.

However, they find themselves lumped together in a common thinking acronyms which once it catches on, it may mislead analysts in a general worldview that may soon grow obsolete. For example in the words of (Nesterov, 2016, pa. 45), in recent years, Russia’s economy and stock market has been among the weakest within the emerging global markets due to undue dominance by an oil-rich class of billionaires who control a combined assets equaling over 20% of the nation’s GDP which was by far the largest share held by a super-rich class in any wolf major economy. None the less, though deeply out of the balance, Russia remains a member of the BRICs through this may be attributed to less meaningful roles such as making the name sound better. There is a greater need for both analysts and investors to remain more flexible  as well as historically in the use of the name since other countries in the developing and emerging world such as the Venezuela in the 1950s, Pakistan in the 1960s as well as Iraq in the 1970s  have always shown the capability to post an economic growth of that can be sustained for a decade or two  but their stability has always been elusive since they have always been tripped by one threat or another such as war, financial crisis, poor and bad leadership as well as general complacency.

However away for the BRICs, though they are not entirely excluded, the current fad in global economic forecasting needs a further projection into the future which no one can authentically claim they will be around to provide the account. this glim approach seems likely to say; for example during the 17th century, when combined china and India could account for half of the entire global GDP and the world was then seemingly poised to welcome an approaching Asian century, with a reasserted preeminence, it eventually proved that the longest period that one can assertively find a clear economic pattern within the global economic cycle is reasonable around a decade. Therefore it may be that far all typical business cycles emerge and last about five years beginning with the bottom of one downturn to the beginning of the next which most of the investors adopting a limited perspective to either one or two business cycles.

In this regard, (Ikenberry 2017, pa. 109), advances the view that, most pundits have adopted the view that, beyond such global economic cycles, forecasts are basically rendered obsolete by the unanticipated appearance of new competitors, the emergence of new technologies as well as the emergence of new political environments. For instance, the world over the majority of the CEO and other major investors still limit their strategic plans and strategies to three or five or to utmost seven years before judging the results over the same time frames; Based on this, in the forthcoming decade, it’s correctly projected that the United States, japan, and Europe may most likely suffer a slowed growth. However, this stagnation may be less bad in comparison with the entire state of the overall global economy which will be much slower as a growth rate of relative three to four % a slowdown which is already underway in china and perhaps much deepens for such economies as they continue to mature.

Currently, china’s economy is enjoying the benefits of a reasonable bigger population which is simply too big as well as gain too fast for the economy of the country to remain on the fast economic growth that is as rapid as it has been. In addition, the country has me that over half of the population moving into the urban cents driving the country closer to the economic point that economists generally referred to as the Lewis turning point. This is a point at which a country’s surplus labor movement into the urban areas from the rural areas is complete exhausted.

According to (Kees 2014, pa. 67), The Lewis point of any countries can be occasioned by tow main points; a heavy migration into the cities over a span of two decades or the shrinking of the general workforce such as produced by the policy of one child in china. Eventually, this makes sense in the perspective of the many Americans today that Asian juggernauts are swiftly overtaking the US market performance largely owing to the country’s periodic cycles of paranoia that can only be comparable to the hype that drove the Japan’s ascent in the 1980s. therefore as an economic growth takes root in china’s as well as in the more advanced and industrialized world, such countries are projects to begin to buy less from their export driven peers such as the brazil, Malaysia, Taiwan, Russia and the Mexico thereby significantly impacting on the world economic boom that has been booming over the last decade leading to the tripling of the average balance of trade within the emerging markets to a whopping 6 %.Based on the GDP, Nonetheless, this has been declining since the year 2008 to the normal rate of 2 %. As a result, the mainly export-driven emerging markets need to find a new way for achieving and driving strong growth as the investors recognize that reality of this that many will most likely not do so.

Over the first half of 2012, the distribution of the value between the best performing and the worst performing major emerging stock markets around the world shot up sharply to over 35 %. However, over the next few years, the likelihood of the new normal growth rates within the emerging markets to resemble those of the 1950s and the 1960s are much higher when the general global growth rates averaged 5 % in a race that left many nations lagging behind. However, this did not necessarily imply the reemergence of the 1970s period emerging nations that were overly characterized by uniformly underdeveloped nations. First, in the words of (Beckley,2009, pa. 67), over those years, some of the emerging markets such as Taiwan and the South Korea were beginning to generally experience a boom in their economies but their success was however overshadowed by the poor performance of the larger economies such as India. This does not necessarily lead to a differentiated economic performance over the emerging market countries since experience has proved that it is always easier to grow fast from a low starting point, therefore, making sense to make the comparison between different income classes.

For instance, among the countries with a general per capita incomes in the range of $ 20,000 to $ 50 000, only two have this far recorded a good chance in matching or exceeding 3 % growth rate over their annual economic growth sustained for over the next decade.

 

 

Bibliography

Sharma, R. 2012. “Broken BRICS: Why the Rest Stopped Rising”, Foreign Affairs, 9(16).

Rogers, Z., 2016. Responsibilities in International Relationship: US foreign Policy Perspectives.

Kees van der Pijl. 2014. The Eurasian Union and the BRICs under attack, (Online) Available at: http://www.academia.edu/31325882/The_Eurasian_Union_and_the_BRICS_under_attack

Ikenberry, J., 2017. International Politics, (Online) Available at: http://scholar.princeton.edu/sites/default/files/gji3/files/wws_541_2015_final.pdf

Nesterov, A., 2016. Why Russia needs the BRICs, (Online) Available at: http://www.academia.edu/6843037/Why_Russia_needs_the_BRICS

Coffey, J., 2013. The Great Convergence, (Online), available at: http://www.unc.edu/depts/diplomat/item/2013/0105/bk/book05_coffey_convergence.html

Beckley, M., 2009. American Primacy, (Online) Available at: http://as.tufts.edu/politicalscience/sites/all/themes/asbase/assets/documents/syllabi/2015spring/ps189-19.pdf

 

 

76-15-3

June 14, 2017

GET

FILE=’ C:\psy7615\assess3\cf_unit_8.sav’.

DATASET NAME DataSet2 WINDOW=FRONT.

DATASET ACTIVATE DataSet2.

DATASET CLOSE DataSet1.

SORT CASES  BY gender.

SPLIT FILE SEPARATE BY gender.

DESCRIPTIVES VARIABLES=test1

/STATISTICS=MEAN.

 

 

 

Descriptives

 

 

Notes
Output Created 31-MAR-2017 17:31:11
Comments  
Input Data C:\psy7615\assess3\cf_unit_8.sav
Active Dataset DataSet2
Filter <none>
Weight <none>
Split File gender
N of Rows in Working Data File 80
Missing Value Handling Definition of Missing User defined missing values are treated as missing.
Cases Used All non-missing data are used.
Syntax DESCRIPTIVES VARIABLES=test1

/STATISTICS=MEAN.

Resources Processor Time 00:00:00.00
Elapsed Time 00:00:00.02

 

 

[DataSet2] C:\psy7615\assess3\cf_unit_8.sav

 

 

 

gender = 0

 

 

Descriptive Statisticsa
  N Mean
test1 40 96.68
Valid N (listwise) 40  

 

a. gender = 0

 

 

 

gender = 1

 

 

Descriptive Statisticsa
  N Mean
test1 40 100.43
Valid N (listwise) 40  

 

a. gender = 1

 

SPLIT FILE OFF.

EXAMINE VARIABLES=test1 BY gender

/PLOT NONE

/STATISTICS DESCRIPTIVES

/CINTERVAL 95

/MISSING LISTWISE

/NOTOTAL.

 

 

 

Explore

 

 

Notes
Output Created 31-MAR-2017 17:32:50
Comments  
Input Data C:\psy7615\assess3\cf_unit_8.sav
Active Dataset DataSet2
Filter <none>
Weight <none>
Split File <none>
N of Rows in Working Data File 80
Missing Value Handling Definition of Missing User-defined missing values for dependent variables are treated as missing.
Cases Used Statistics are based on cases with no missing values for any dependent variable or factor used.
Syntax EXAMINE VARIABLES=test1 BY gender

/PLOT NONE

/STATISTICS DESCRIPTIVES

/CINTERVAL 95

/MISSING LISTWISE

/NOTOTAL.

Resources Processor Time 00:00:00.02
Elapsed Time 00:00:00.03

 

 

[DataSet2] C:\psy7615\assess3\cf_unit_8.sav

 

 

 

gender

 

 

Case Processing Summary
  gender Cases
Valid Missing Total
N Percent N Percent N Percent
test1 0 40 100.0% 0 0.0% 40 100.0%
1 40 100.0% 0 0.0% 40 100.0%

 

 

Descriptives
  gender Statistic Std. Error
test1 0 Mean 96.68 2.428
95% Confidence Interval for Mean Lower Bound 91.76  
Upper Bound 101.59  
5% Trimmed Mean 96.56  
Median 95.00  
Variance 235.763  
Std. Deviation 15.355  
Minimum 69  
Maximum 126  
Range 57  
Interquartile Range 24  
Skewness .160 .374
Kurtosis -.758 .733
1 Mean 100.43 2.505
95% Confidence Interval for Mean Lower Bound 95.36  
Upper Bound 105.49  
5% Trimmed Mean 100.67  
Median 101.00  
Variance 250.969  
Std. Deviation 15.842  
Minimum 64  
Maximum 135  
Range 71  
Interquartile Range 21  
Skewness -.282 .374
Kurtosis .050 .733

 

Split file descriptive statistics

The dataset was split by gender and its descriptives obtained. According to the output, it’s clear that the mean test1 score for each gender was 96.68 and 100.43 of 40 valid cases for female and male genders respectively. We’ll need to carry out further hypothesis tests to determine whether the obtained test1 means for each gender is statistically significant or not. It’s possible to carry out such test within SPSS. However, in this case, the descriptive statistic obtained, the mean of test1, informs us that gender 0, female, had a smaller mean than gender 1, male. It helps us to visualize the meaning and patterns observed in our sample data.

After analyzing the split file, the split was turned off, and the descriptives for test1 were obtained. The output indicates the mean as 96.68 with a standard deviation of 2.428. At the 95% confidence interval for mean, we have it that the mean ranges from 91.76 to 101.59. What this communicates is that the mean for each gender, 0 and 1, lies within the lower and upper bound of the mean when the data set isn’t split. Further, from the SPSS output of the explore command when the split is turned off informs us that the 5% trimmed mean is 100.67. While additional inferential statistical operations are necessary to understand the meaning of these values, the 5% trimmed mean informs us that after removing a pre-specified percent of outliers and other extreme values, the mean will be 100.67.