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  • 1.
    Abbasi, Seyed
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Determinants of social inequalities in cardiovascular disease among Iranian patients2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Background and objectives: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the single largest cause of mortality in the world. Similar to other health issues, CVD is generally affected either by individual risk factors, which may influence the risk for developing an illness or its complications, or by social indicators (social determinants of health). There is evidence from developed countries which shows that the so-called "upstream factors"—including social determinants such as political, social, spiritual, cultural, and economic factors—may affect the prevalence and incidence of CVD. Scarce evidence from studies in low- and middle-income countries also suggests that social factors may affect the distribution of CVD across population groups. However, there is a dearth of such data in Iran, where only a few small-sizedstudies have focused on the social determinants of health. Therefore, the present thesis sought to fill this gap by assessing the effects of socioeconomic status (SES) on the distribution of CVD and the relevant inequalities within the Iranian context.

    Methods: This thesis is based on four studies, which used data from the Tehran Heart Center’s Databases. In Study I, a total of 44,820 patients who underwent coronary angiography at Tehran Heart Center between 2005 and 2010 were recruited. Then, their pre- and post-procedural data—including demographics, CVD risk factors, symptoms, and laboratory tests—were compared between men and women. In Study II, 6,246 patients with acutecoronary syndrome who were hospitalized between March 2004 and August 2011 were included and, based on their education and their employment status, were divided into high- and low-SES groups. Thereafter, the effect of SES on the in-hospital death of the patients was evaluated. In Study III, 20,165 patients with documented coronary artery disease who underwent coronary angiography at Tehran Heart Center were enrolled and CVD risk factors and severity (measured by the Gensini score) were assessed among the six major Iranian ethnic groups. In Study IV, 9,088 patients with acute coronary syndrome who were hospitalized at Tehran Heart Center between May 2007and June 2014 were recruited and the association between in-hospital death due to acute coronary syndrome and place of residence (rural/urban) was assessed using logistic regression adjusted for potential confounders.

    Results: In this thesis, the data analyses were based on the hypothesis that there is a potential association between the different socioeconomic indicators and the selected cardiovascular outcomes. In Study I, among the recruited participant, 25,363 men and 11,995 women had coronary artery disease and the women not only were significantly older, less educated, and more overweight but also had higher blood levels of triglyceride, cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein, high-density lipoprotein, and fasting blood sugar than the men. Moreover, hypertension and diabetes mellitus showed the strongest association in the women with coronary artery disease (OR=3.45, 95% CI: 3.28to 3.61 and OR=2.37, 95% CI: 2.26 to 2.48, respectively). In addition, the frequency of post-procedural recommendations for non-invasive procedures was higher in the women than in the men (20.1% vs 18.6%; P<0.001). In StudyII, of the 6,246 recruited patients with acute coronary syndrome, 3,290individuals were considered low-SES and 2,956 high-SES individuals. In-hospital death occurred in 79 (1.26%) patients: 1.9% in the low-SES and 0.6% in the high-SES groups. After adjustment for the possible cofounders, our multivariate analysis demonstrated a significant effect of the patients’ SES on their in-hospital death and a lower in-hospital mortality rate was shown in the high-SES patients (OR=0.30, 95% CI: 0.09 to 0.98; P=0.046). In Study III, the Fars (8.7%) and Gilak (8.6%) ethnic groups had the highest frequency of having at least four simultaneous risk factors. Additionally, the mean Gensini score was lowest in the Lurs (67.5±52.8) and highest among the Gilaks (77.1±55.9). The multivariable regression analysis indicated that the Gilaks showed the worst CVD severity (β: 0.056, 95% CI: 0.009 to 0.102; P=0.018), followed by the Turks (β: 0.032, 95% CI: 0.005 to 0.059; P=0.020), and the lowest CVD severity, was detected in the Lurs (β: -0.087, 95% CI: -0.146 to -0.027;P=0.004). Study IV showed that while smoking (P=0.002), positive family history of coronary artery disease (P=0.003), higher body mass index (P=0.013),and hyperlipidemia (P=0.026) were more prevalent in the urban patients, the rural patients showed lower educational levels (P<0.001) and higher frequency of unemployment (P=0.009). Meanwhile, in-hospital death occurred in 135 (1.5%) patients: 125 (1.5%) urban and 10 (1.2%) rural. To adjust the effects of the possible confounders, we utilized the Firth regression model, which showed no significant difference regarding in-hospital death betweenthe rural and urban patients (OR=1.57, 95% CI: 0.376 to 7.450; P=0.585).

    Conclusions: The aim of this thesis was to investigate the effects of social determinants (particularly SES) on CVD and its modifiable risk factors among Iranian patients. Results showed that medical treatment for CVD was more recommended (by treating physicians) to the women than the men, and the low-SES patients with acute coronary syndrome were more likely to die in the hospital than their high-SES counterparts. In addition, the thesis found heterogeneity in the distribution of the traditional risk factors for CVD as well as CVD severity in the major Iranian ethnic groups. Further, there were no differences concerning the in-hospital death rates due to acute coronary syndrome between the urban and rural patients after adjustment for the potential confounders.

  • 2.
    Afewerki, Samson
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
    Development of catalytic enantioselective C-C bond-forming and cascade transformations by merging homogeneous or heterogeneous transition metal catalysis with asymmetric aminocatalysis2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Chiral molecules play a central role in our daily life and in nature, for instance the different enantiomers or diastereomers of a chiral molecule may show completely different biological activity. For this reason, it is a vital goal for synthetic chemists to design selective and efficient methodologies that allow the synthesis of the desired enantiomer. In this context, it is highly important that the concept of green chemistry is considered while designing new approaches that eventually will provide more environmental and sustainable chemical synthesis.The aim of this thesis is to develop the concept of combining transition metal catalysis and aminocatalysis in one process (dual catalysis). This strategy would give access to powerful tools to promote reactions that were not successful with either transition metal catalyst or the organocatalyst alone. The protocols presented in this thesis based on organocatalytic transformations via enamine or iminium intermediates or both, in combination with transition metal catalysis, describes new enantioselective organocatalytic procedures that afford valuable compounds with high chemo- and enantioselectivity from inexpensive commercial available starting materials. In paper I, we present a successful example of dual catalysis: the combination of transition metal activation of an electrophile and aminocatalyst activation of a nucleophile via enamine intermediate. In paper II, the opposite scenario is presented, here the transition metal activates the nucleophile and the aminocatalyst activates the electrophile via an iminium intermediate. In paper III,we present a domino Michael/carbocyclisation reaction that is catalysed by a chiral amine (via iminium/enamine activation) in combination with a transition metal catalysts activation of an electrophile. In paper IV, the concept of dual catalysis was further extended and applied for the highly enantioselective synthesis of valuable structural scaffolds, namely poly-substituted spirocyclic oxindoles. Finally, in paper V the concept of dual catalysis was expanded, by investigating more challenging and environmentally benign processes, such as the successful combination of a heterogeneous palladium and amine catalysts for the highly enantioselective synthesis of functionalised cyclopentenes, containing an all carbonquaternary stereocenter, dihydrofurans and dihydropyrrolidines.

  • 3.
    Ahmad, Naeem
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Modelling, optimization and design of visual sensor networks for sky surveillance2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 4.
    Ainegren, Mats
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering and Sustainable Development.
    Roller skis' rolling resistance and grip characteristics: influences on physiological and performance measures in cross-country skiers2012Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of this thesis was to investigate roller ski characteristics; classical and freestyle roller skis’ rolling resistance coefficients (μR) and classical style roller skis’ static friction coefficients (μS), and to study the influence of different μR and μS on cross-country skiers’ performance and both physiological and biomechanical indices. The aim was also to study differences in skiing economy and efficiency between recreational skiers, female and male junior and senior elite cross-country skiers.The experiments showed that during a time period of 30 minutes of rolling on a treadmill (warm-up), μR decreased significantly (p<0.05) to about 60-65 % and 70-75 % of its initial value for freestyle and classical roller skis respectively. Also, there was a significant influence of normal force on μR, while different velocities and inclinations of the treadmill only resulted in small changes in μR.The study of the influence on physiological variables of a ~50 % change in μR showed that during submaximal steady rate exercise, external power, oxygen uptake, heart rate and blood lactate were significantly changed, while there were non-significant or only small changes to cycle rate, cycle length and ratings of perceived exertion. Incremental maximal tests showed that time to exhaustion was significantly changed and this occurred without a change in maximal power, maximal oxygen uptake, maximal heart rate and blood lactate, and that the influence on ratings of perceived exertion was non-significant or small.The study of classical style roller skis μS showed values that were five to eight times more than the values of μS reported from on-snow skiing with grip-waxed cross-country skis.The subsequent physiological and biomechanical experiments with different μS showed a significantly lower skiing economy (~14 % higher v̇O2), higher heart rate, lower propulsive forces coming from the legs and shorter time to exhaustion (~30 %) when using a different type of roller ski with a μS similar to on-snow skiing, while there was no difference between tests when using different pairs of roller skis with a (similar) higher μS.The part of the thesis which focused on skiing economy and efficiency as a function of skill, age and gender, showed that the elite cross-country skiers had better skiing economy and higher gross efficiency (5-18 %) compared with the recreational skiers, and the senior elite had better economy and higher efficiency (4-5 %) than their junior counterparts, while no differences could be found between the genders.

  • 5.
    Alam, Mohammad Anzar
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Online optical method for real-time surface measurement using line-of-light triangulation2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Real time paper surface-web measurement is one of the challenging research fields. The traditional laboratory method has many limitations and is unable to measure the entire tambour during the manufacturing process. It has been necessary to develop an online technique that could measure the surface topography in real time. An optical technique was developed, based on laser triangulation, and is applied to develop a new prototype device, which characterizes high speed paper-web surfaces over a wide scale of spatial wavelengths spectrum and computes the surface roughness in real time. The used multi channel pulsed laser diode, source of illumination onto the paper-web, is of benefit due to its low coherence length and is capable to deliver a powerful burst of light beam over a 1 µs duration, which delivers energy of 100 µJ per pulse. The short exposure time avoids blurriness in the acquired images which could possible due to the high speed and vibrations on the paper-web.

    The laser beam is shaped into a narrow line-of-light using cylindrical lenses and is projected onto a paper-web surface, which covers a physical length of about 210 mm. The created line-of-light cross section full width at half maximum, FWHM Gaussian distribution, is 2-3 pixels on the image. The line-of-light is projected onto the paper-web perpendicular to the plane of the surface. The low angled, low specular, reduced coherence length, scattered reflected laser line is captured by the 3 CCD sensors, which are synchronized with the laser source. The low specular light ensures to avoid saturation of the imaging sensors if the surface is very smooth, and obliquely captures the z-directional fine feature of the surface.

    The scattered phenomenon of the reflected light is responsible for the surface irregularity measurements. The basic image processing algorithm is applied in order to remove noise and cropped the images widthwise so that only pixels above a preset threshold gray level can be processed, which enables efficient real time measurement. The image is transformed into a 1D array using the center of gravity, COG. The accuracy and precision of the COG depends on the line-of-light FWHM, which, in turn, is responsible for the accuracy, noise and the resolution of the developed technique. The image subpixel resolution achieved is 0.01 times a pixel and uuncertainty in the raw data is 0.43 µm while it is 0.05 µm in the rms roughness.

    The signal processing steps combining the B-Spline filter and the filter in the spatial frequency domain were employed in order to separate roughness, waviness, and form and position error in the raw profile. The prototype is designed to measure online surface roughness and to characterize surface in a spatial wavelength spectrum from 0.09 to 30 mm, which is extendable to any required spatial range in order to cover a wide scale surface feature such as micro roughness, macro roughness and waviness. It is proven that exploitation of a simple laser triangulation technique could lead to an improvement in the overall quality and efficiency in the paper and paperboard industries and it can also be of potential interest for the other surface characterization problems.

  • 6.
    Alfredsson, Jon
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Limitations of subthreshold digital floating-gate circuits in present and future nanoscale CMOS technologies2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
  • 7.
    Alimadadi, Majid
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Chemical Engineering.
    Foam-formed Fiber Networks: Manufacturing, Characterization, and Numerical Modeling: With a Note on the Orientation Behavior of Rod-like Particles in Newtonian Fluids2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Fiber networks are ubiquitous and are seen in both industrial materials (paper and nonwovens) and biological materials (plant cells and animal tissues). Nature intricately manipulates these network structures by varying their density, aggregation, and fiber orientation to create a variety of functionalities.

    In conventional papermaking, fibrous materials are dispersed in water to form a sheet of a highly oriented two-dimensional (2D) network. In such a structure, the in-plane mechanical and transport properties are very different from those in the out-of-plane direction. A three-dimensional (3D) network, however, may offer unique properties not seen in conventional paper products.

    Foam, i.e., a dispersed system of gas and liquid, is widely used as the suspending medium in different industries. Recently, foam forming was studied extensively to develop the understanding of foam-fiber interactions in order to find potential applications of this technology in papermaking.

    In this thesis, a method for producing low-density, 3D fiber networks by utilizing foam forming is investigated and the structures and mechanical properties of such networks are studied. Micro-computed tomography is used to capture the 3D structure of the network and subsequently to reproduce artificial networks. The finite element method is utilized to model the compression behavior of both the reproduced physical network and the artificial networks in order to understand how the geometry and constitutive elements of the foam-formed network affect its bulk mechanical properties. Additionally, a method was studied in order to quantify the orientation behavior of particles in a laminar Newtonian flow based on the key parameters of the flow which control the orientation.

    The resulting foam-formed structures were extremely bulky. Yet despite this high bulk, the fiber networks retained good structural integrity. The compression behavior in the thickness direction was characterized by extreme compressibility and high strain recovery after compression. The results from the modeling showed that the finite-deformation mechanical response of the fiber network in compression was satisfactorily captured by the simulation. However, the artificial network shows higher stiffness than the simulated physical network and the experiment. This discrepancy in stiffness was attributed to macroscopic structural non-uniformities in the physical network, which result in increased local compliance. It was also found that the friction between the fibers, as well as the fiber curvature, had a negligible impact on the compression response of the fiber network, while defects (in the form of kinks) had an effect on the response in the last stages of compression. The study of the orientation behavior of particles at different flow velocities, particle sizes, and channel geometries suggests that it might be possible to utilize the flow shear rate as a means to quantify the orientation behavior.

  • 8.
    Ambatipudi, Radhika
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    High Frequency (MHz) Planar Transformers for Next Generation Switch Mode Power Supplies2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Increasing the power density of power electronic converters while reducing or maintaining the same cost, offers a higher potential to meet the current trend inrelation to various power electronic applications. High power density converters can be achieved by increasing the switching frequency, due to which the bulkiest parts, such as transformer, inductors and the capacitor's size in the convertercircuit can be drastically reduced. In this regard, highly integrated planar magnetics are considered as an effective approach compared to the conventional wire wound transformers in modern switch mode power supplies (SMPS). However, as the operating frequency of the transformers increase from several hundred kHz to MHz, numerous problems arise such as skin and proximity effects due to the induced eddy currents in the windings, leakage inductance and unbalanced magnetic flux distribution. In addition to this, the core losses whichare functional dependent on frequency gets elevated as the operating frequency increases. Therefore, this thesis provides an insight towards the problems related to the high frequency magnetics and proposes a solution with regards to different aspects in relation to designing high power density, energy efficient transformers.The first part of the thesis concentrates on the investigation of high power density and highly energy efficient coreless printed circuit board (PCB) step-down transformers useful for stringent height DC-DC converter applications, where the core losses are being completely eliminated. These transformers also maintain the advantages offered by existing core based transformers such as, high coupling coefficient, sufficient input impedance, high energy efficiency and wide frequencyband width with the assistance of a resonant technique. In this regard, several coreless PCB step down transformers of different turn’s ratio for power transfer applications have been designed and evaluated. The designed multilayered coreless PCB transformers for telecom and PoE applications of 8,15 and 30W show that the volume reduction of approximately 40 - 90% is possible when compared to its existing core based counterparts while maintaining the energy efficiency of the transformers in the range of 90 - 97%. The estimation of EMI emissions from the designed transformers for the given power transfer application proves that the amount of radiated EMI from a multilayered transformer is lessthan that of the two layered transformer because of the decreased radius for thesame amount of inductance.The design guidelines for the multilayered coreless PCB step-down transformer for the given power transfer application has been proposed. The designed transformer of 10mm radius has been characterized up to the power level of 50Wand possesses a record power density of 107W/cm3 with a peak energy efficiency of 96%. In addition to this, the design guidelines of the signal transformer fordriving the high side MOSFET in double ended converter topologies have been proposed. The measured power consumption of the high side gate drive circuitvitogether with the designed signal transformer is 0.37W. Both these signal andpower transformers have been successfully implemented in a resonant converter topology in the switching frequency range of 2.4 – 2.75MHz for the maximum load power of 34.5W resulting in the peak energy efficiency of converter as 86.5%.This thesis also investigates the indirect effect of the dielectric laminate on the magnetic field intensity and current density distribution in the planar power transformers with the assistance of finite element analysis (FEA). The significanceof the high frequency dielectric laminate compared to FR-4 laminate in terms of energy efficiency of planar power transformers in MHz frequency region is also explored.The investigations were also conducted on different winding strategies such as conventional solid winding and the parallel winding strategies, which play an important role in the design and development of a high frequency transformer and suggested a better choice in the case of transformers operating in the MHz frequency region.In the second part of the thesis, a novel planar power transformer with hybrid core structure has been designed and evaluated in the MHz frequency region. The design guidelines of the energy efficient high frequency planar power transformerfor the given power transfer application have been proposed. The designed corebased planar transformer has been characterized up to the power level of 50W and possess a power density of 47W/cm3 with maximum energy efficiency of 97%. This transformer has been evaluated successfully in the resonant converter topology within the switching frequency range of 3 – 4.5MHz. The peak energy efficiency ofthe converter is reported to be 92% and the converter has been tested for the maximum power level of 45W, which is suitable for consumer applications such as laptop adapters. In addition to this, a record power density transformer has been designed with a custom made pot core and has been characterized in thefrequency range of 1 - 10MHz. The power density of this custom core transformer operating at 6.78MHz frequency is 67W/cm3 and with the peak energy efficiency of 98%.In conclusion, the research in this dissertation proposed a solution for obtaining high power density converters by designing the highly integrated, high frequency(1 - 10MHz) coreless and core based planar magnetics with energy efficiencies inthe range of 92 - 97%. This solution together with the latest semiconductor GaN/SiC switching devices provides an excellent choice to meet the requirements of the next generation ultra flat low profile switch mode power supplies (SMPS).

  • 9.
    Andersson, Erik
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    PHYSIOLOGICAL AND BIOMECHANICAL FACTORS DETERMINING CROSS-COUNTRY SKIING PERFORMANCE2016Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Cross-country (c.c.) skiing is a complex sport discipline from both physiological and biomechanical perspectives, with varying course topographies that require different proportions of the involved sub-techniques to be utilised. A relatively new event in c.c. skiing is the sprint race, involving four separate heats, each lasting 2-4 min, with diverse demands from distance races associated with longer durations. Therefore, the overall aim of the current thesis has been to examine the biomechanical and physiological factors associated with sprint c.c. skiing performance through novel measurements conducted both in the field (Studies I-III) and the laboratory (Studies IV and V).

    In Study I sprint skiing velocities and sub-techniques were analysed with a differential global navigation satellite system in combination with video recording. In Studies II and III the effects of an increasing velocity (moderate, high and maximal) on the biomechanics of uphill classical skiing with the diagonal stride (DS) (Study II) and herringbone (HB) (Study III) sub-techniques were examined.

    In Study I the skiers completed the 1,425 m (2 x 712 m) sprint time trial (STT) in 207 s, at an average velocity of 24.8 km/h, with multiple technique transitions (range: 21-34) between skiing techniques (i.e., the different gears [G2-7]). A pacing strategy involving a fast start followed by a gradual slowing down (i.e., positive pacing) was employed as indicated by the 2.9% faster first than second lap. The slower second lap was primarily related to a slower (12.9%) uphill velocity with a shift from G3 towards a greater use of G2. The maximal oxygen uptake ( O2max) was related to the ability to maintain uphill skiing velocity and the fastest skiers used G3 to a greater extent than G2. In addition, maximal speed over short distances (50 and 20 m) with the G3 and double poling (DP) sub-techniques exerted an important impact on STT performance.

    Study II demonstrated that during uphill skiing (7.5°) with DS, skiers increased cycle rate and cycle length from moderate to high velocity, while cycle rate increased and cycle length decreased at maximal velocity. Absolute poling, gliding and kick times became gradually shorter with an elevated velocity. The rate of pole and leg force development increased with elevated velocity and the development of leg force in the normal direction was substantially faster during skiing on snow than previous findings for roller skiing, although the peak force was similar in both cases. The fastest skiers applied greater peak leg forces over shorter durations.

    Study III revealed that when employing the HB technique on a steep uphill slope (15°), the skiers positioned their skis laterally (“V” between 25 to 30°) and planted their poles at a slight lateral angle (8 to 12°), with most of the propulsive force being exerted on the inside forefoot. Of the total propulsive force, 77% was generated by the legs. The cycle rate increased across all three velocities (from 1.20 to 1.60 Hz), while cycle length only increased from moderate to high velocity (from 2.0 to 2.3 m). Finally, the magnitude and rate of leg force generation are important determinants of both DS and HB skiing performance, although the rate is more important in connection with DS, since this sub-technique involves gliding.

    In Studies IV and V skiers performed pre-tests for determination of gross efficiency (GE), O2max, and Vmax on a treadmill. The main performance test involved four self-paced STTs on a treadmill over a 1,300-m simulated course including three flat (1°) DP sections interspersed with two uphill (7°) DS sections.

    The modified GE method for estimating anaerobic energy production during skiing on varying terrain employed in Study IV revealed that the relative aerobic and anaerobic energy contributions were 82% and 18%, respectively, during the 232 s of skiing, with an accumulated oxygen (O2) deficit of 45 mL/kg. The STT performance time was largely explained by the GE (53%), followed by O2 (30%) and O2 deficit (15%). Therefore, training strategies designed to reduce energetic cost and improve GE should be examined in greater detail.

    In Study V metabolic responses and pacing strategies during the four successive STTs were investigated. The first and the last trials were the fastest (both 228 s) and were associated with both a substantially larger and a more rapid anaerobic energy supply, while the average O2 during all four STTs was similar. The individual variation in STT performance was explained primarily (69%) by the variation in O2 deficit. Furthermore, positive pacing was employed throughout all the STTs, but the pacing strategy became more even after the first trial. In addition, considerably higher (~ 30%) metabolic rates were generated on the uphill than on the flat sections of the course, reflecting an irregular production of anaerobic energy. Altogether, a fast start appears important for STT performance and high work rates during uphill skiing may exert a more pronounced impact on skiing performance outdoors, due to the reduction in velocity fluctuations and thereby overall air-drag.

  • 10.
    Andersson, Ewa
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    Oberoendets praktik2013Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The Independent Practice

    During the last hundred years, the music industry has evolved with the record labels playing a central role. However, many argue that this situation is about to change as record sales have decreased during the last ten years. This imminent change in the music industry will not only affect the multinational record labels, but also the independent record labels.  As record sales have decreased during the last ten years, the number of members in the Swedish Independent Music Producers Association (SOM) has increased and the association now includes 300 independent record labels which are responsible for around 30 percent of the music being produced in Sweden. However, they can be considered a dominated group within the music industry, since they only have around 10 percent of the total market shares when it comes to selling figures. Considering the changes in record sales, the domination of the major record labels and the somewhat fascinating growth of independent actors during turbulent times, this thesis will study how the Swedish independent actors relate to the practices and ideals relevant in the daily work of running an independent record label. The practices studied in this thesis are the practice of work, the practice of recognition and the practice of content production.

    The purpose of this thesis is to analyse how independence is constructed among the members of SOM. The thesis is based on material collected in a web survey as well as seven interviews with representatives of indie labels. The web survey was distributed to all members of SOM, and the interviewed informants were selected by snowball sampling, using a locator to find informants. The survey material was analysed with cluster and variance analysis, while the interview material was analysed using content analysis – searching for themes connected to the practices. All material is understood through the theoretical frame of the field theory.

    The main results of the study are that there are different ways of relating to practices among the Swedish independent actors, and that these ways of relating are closely connected to their position within the field. There are common ways of relating to practices such as always promoting DIY, the importance of music and the need to resist the dominance of the major labels. However, the independent actors are not consistent in how these commonalities work in practice. For example, DIY is not applied if it is not economically necessary, and the need to resist the major labels is only apparent when the independent actor has a weaker position within the field. The more established an independent actor is within the field, the lesser resistant he is against the dominating structures of the music industry.  As a result of a weakening resistance against the major labels, the independent actors turn to struggle each other.

  • 11.
    Andersson, Henrik
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Position Sensitive Detectors: Device Technology and Applications in Spectroscopy2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis deals with the development, processing and characterization of position sensitive detectors and, in addition, to the development of compact and cost effective spectrometers.

    Position sensitive detectors are used to measure, with great accuracy and speed, the position of a light spot incident on the surface. Their main use is for triangulation, displacement and vibration measurements.

    A type of position sensitive detector based on the MOS principle and using optically transparent indium tin oxide as a gate contact has been developed. This type of detector utilizes the MOS principle where an induced channel forms beneath the gate oxide in the surface of the Silicon substrate.

    One and two dimensional detectors have both been fabricated and characterized. The first measurements showed that the linearity did not fulfil expectations and it was suspected that stress induced by the gate contact could be the reason for the seemingly high nonlinearity.

    Further investigations into both the p-n junction and the MOS type position sensitive detectors lead to the conclusion that the indium tin oxide gate is responsible for inducing a substantial stress in the surface of the detector, thus giving rise to increased position nonlinearity. The heat treatment step which was conducted was determined to be critical as either a too short or too long heat treatment resulted in stress in the gate and channel leading to position nonlinearity. If a correctly timed heat treatment is performed then the detector’s linearity is in parity with the best commercial position sensitive detectors.

    In addition, the development of very small, compact and cost effective spectrometers has been performed with the aim of constructing devices for use in the process industry. The development of a wedge shaped array of Fabry-Perot interferometers that can be mounted directly on top of a detector makes it possible to construct a very compact spectrometer using the minimum amount of optics. This wedge interferometer has been evaluated by means of array pixel detectors and position sensitive detectors for both the infrared and the visible wavelength ranges.

    When used with a position sensitive detector it is necessary to use a slit to record the intensity of the interferogram for many points over the detector, equivalent to pixels on an array detector. Usually the use of moving parts in a spectrometer will impose the use of high precision scanning mechanisms and calibration. By using a position sensitive detector for the interferogram readout both the position and the intensity are known for every measurement point and thus the demands placed on the scanning system are minimized.

  • 12.
    Andreassen Devik, Siri
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Nursing Sciences.
    Hjemmesykepleie til eldre som bor på bygda med uhelbredelig kreft2016Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The need to deliver high-quality palliative homecare has been underscored in current professional guidelines and demands for efficacy, as well as in the preferences of patients and their families. Indeed, demographic changes and an increased risk of cancer among older people pose challenges to the home healthcare settings in Norway and the rest of the world. Yet, little is known about how older persons experience living with incurable cancer and how palliative home nursing care may increase their quality of life. Moreover, few studies have focused on rural contexts or explored such settings can influence the delivery and outcome of care. In rural contexts, long distances and limited health-related human resources challenge the provision of specialised services, and palliative patients living in rural municipalities most often receive services from district nurses without special training in oncological or palliative care. The aim of this thesis was thus to explore experiences with, and meanings of, rural home nursing care among older persons living with incurable cancer. The thesis consists of five studies, all with qualitative designs, and performed in rural municipalities.Study I was designed as a case study involving individual interviews and observations to explore how older persons diagnosed with incurable cancer and living alone have experienced daily life while commuting for policlinic palliative chemotherapy. By extension, the aim of Study II, conducted as a secondary analysis of material collected in study I, was to illuminate and interpret the meanings of the lived experiences of the participants in that study. By contrast, Study III used individual interviews to illuminate and interpret the meaning of the lived experience of older persons with incurable cancer, yet who have received home nursing care. Meanwhile, Study IV entailed individual interviews with nurses working in home nursing care. Its aim was to illuminate and interpret the meaning of nurses' lived experiences among severely ill patients in their homes. Lastly, Study V involved individual interviews with bereaved family members; its aim was to explore their perceptions of suffering in older persons receiving palliative home nursing care during their final phase of life. The findings of Study I showed that older persons interviewed hovered between hope and fear, experienced stressful commutes, and were constantly exhausted. Experiences with long, tiring taxi trips, of having few supportive people nearby, and of being offered hardly any local healthcare services made these persons highly vulnerable. Nevertheless, their demands were few, and they rarely complained. The findings of Study II showed a complex, yet comprehensive situation in which physical symptoms and emotions had become entangled. Four themes were found: enduring by keeping hope alive, becoming aware of being one one's own, living up to expectations of being a good patient, and being at risk of losing identity and value. Suffering related to care, or the lack therefore, was the most striking discovery, and the older persons seemed to endure by keeping hope alive. Besides hoping for survival, their hopes also included a desire to be recognised and treated with respect, though such often seemed to go unnoticed. The findings of Study III revealed three themes: being content with what one gets, falling into place, and losing one's place. The phrase picking up the pieces was found useful for summing up the meaning of one's lived experience. In that sense, the three themes referred to how the pieces symbolized the remaining parts of life or services available in their environment and how the older persons might see themselves as pieces in a puzzle. Participants exhibited strong place attachment, involving physical insideness, social insideness, and autobiographical insideness, which suggested that the rural context might provide and advantageous healthcare environment. Interestingly, nurses' personal engagement and willingness to be involved in caring relationship appeared to be more important than any special competence or technical skills. The findings of Study IV showed that patients' expressions left impressions that caused emotional waves in the nurses. Four themes were found: being open for the presence of the Other, being satisfied, being frustrated, and being ambivalent. Understanding and balancing this emotional dimension in care seemed to cause confusion and distress for the nurses, and realizing how their feelings might prompt either generosity or aloofness towards the patient was upsetting. Thatinterpretation suggested confusion regarding what it means to be a professional nurse.Lastly, the findings of Study V showed that bereaved family members perceived suffering related to the illness, to the care, and to the life of their ill relatives during their final phase of life. Well-being emerged as having significant, contrasting elements. Well-being related to other people, to the home, and to activity, in all of which the essence referred to a state of dwelling-mobility. The findings suggested that nurses in this context need to seek out patients' and their families members' experiences with comfort and with disturbance. Nursing and palliative care that become purely disease- and symptom-focused can end with all parties' giving up and divert attention from social and cultural factors that may contribute to well-being when cure is not the goal.The findings of this thesis could alter some current knowledge in the field. From a patient perspective, the rural context is not necessarily disadvantaged, care is not necessarily caring, and the alleviation of suffering and cultivation of wellbeing are not necessarily two sides of the same coin. Home nursing care is often seen as a precondition for staying at home. Working in patients' homes allows nurses to witness and become involved in each patient's unique situation. However, impressions of patients' expressions awake feelings in nurses that have the power to bring about caring actions. At the same time, the fear of being unprofessional or unable to deliver proper care bothers nurses and might threaten the closeness that patients desire. Home nursing is care organized in a system in which services are predefined, apportioned, and bound to specific procedures, and the holistic ideals of the palliative care philosophy are often not within the framework of the system in which district nurses work.

  • 13.
    Andres, Britta
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
    Low-Cost, Environmentally Friendly Electric Double-Layer Capacitors: Concept, Materials and Production2017Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Today’s society is currently performing an exit from fossilfuel energy sources. The change to sustainable alternativesrequires inexpensive and environmentally friendly energy storagedevices. However, most current devices contain expensive,rare or toxic materials. These materials must be replaced bylow-cost, abundant, nontoxic components.In this thesis, I suggest the production of paper-based electricdouble-layer capacitors (EDLCs) to meet the demand oflow-cost energy storage devices that provide high power density.To fulfill the requirements of sustainable and environmentallyfriendly devices, production of EDLCs that consist of paper,graphite and saltwater is proposed. Paper can be used as aseparator between the electrodes and as a substrate for theelectrodes. Graphite is suited for use as an active material in theelectrodes, and saltwater can be employed as an electrolyte.Westudied and developed different methods for the productionof nanographite and graphene from graphite. Composites containingthese materials and similar advanced carbon materialshave been tested as electrode materials in EDLCs. I suggest theuse of cellulose nanofibers (CNFs) or microfibrillated cellulose(MFC) as a binder in the electrodes. In addition to improvedmechanical stability, the nanocellulose improved the stabilityof graphite dispersions and the electrical performance of theelectrodes. The influence of the cellulose quality on the electricalproperties of the electrodes and EDLCs was investigated.The results showed that the finest nanocellulose quality is notthe best choice for EDLC electrodes; MFC is recommended forthis application instead. The results also demonstrated thatthe capacitance of EDLCs can be increased if the electrodemasses are adjusted according to the size of the electrolyte ions.Moreover, we investigated the issue of high contact resistancesat the interface between porous carbon electrodes and metalcurrent collectors. To reduce the contact resistance, graphitefoil can be used as a current collector instead of metal foils.Using the suggested low-cost materials, production methodsand conceptual improvements, it is possible to reduce the material costs by more than 90% in comparison with commercialunits. This confirms that paper-based EDLCs are apromising alternative to conventional EDLCs. Our findings andadditional research can be expected to substantially supportthe design and commercialization of sustainable EDLCs andother green energy technologies.

  • 14.
    Andresen, Edith
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    Dressed for success: designing and managing regional strategic networks2011Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Inter-organizational network initiatives such as regional strategic networks (RSNs) are often used by firms and public agencies to support regional development and competitiveness. RSNs are designed networks managed by a hub and financed by public or private means. RSN management is complex as members are autonomous and initially often loosely connected. The effects of RSNs on regional development are disputed as engineered relationship development may interfere with ongoing business relationships.  Despite this, vast public funds are being invested in collaborative initiatives. Identifying factors affecting RSN performance will provide a better basis for evaluating and managing such initiatives.

    Based on concepts such as actors, resources, and activities findings are reported from longitudinal case-studies built on interviews with 68 members and hubs in four RSNs. Data were also collected through participant observation, conversations, archival data and emails. Findings indicate that factors such as evaluation criteria, member composition, relationships, location, goals, the hub, physical and human resources, knowledge sharing and development, resources, policies and norms, social activities, and communication exert an impact on entrepreneurship and cooperation.

    The first paper focuses on factors such as actor composition, actor goals, number of actors, and activities facilitating relationship development and commitment. The second paper identifies a framework of seven tasks to be performed by the hub. The effects on development of preferences and atmosphere are dealt with in the third paper. Effects of cooperation between public/private sector and universities are addressed in the fourth paper, and entrepreneurial processes in network contexts are analyzed in the fifth one.

    The important management role of the hub is emphasized as is carefully considered member composition. Relationships and commitment are found to be crucial. These factors are not covered by national and regional performance criteria. They merit a place of their own.

  • 15.
    Aronsson, K. Andreas
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
    Effects of wood ash on freshwater organisms and aquatic forest ecosystems2007Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Wood ash application (WAA) has been recommended mainly for two reasons; i) to avoid depletion of minerals in the soil due to whole tree harvest in the forestry and ii) to mitigate harmful effects of acidification of soil and surface waters. In conclusion, the effects on terrestrial ecosystems and, especially, tree growth, can be attributed to the properties of the ash, the dose applied and the specific site at which the ash is applied. The research conducted on the effects of WAA on limnological ecosystems is very limited, and the major purpose of the present thesis was to gain knowledge of the effects of wood ash to different freshwater organisms, and the more comprehensive, limnological effects of WAA in the first stream in Bispgården, Sweden.

    Effects of wood ash solutions on the unicellular alga Euglena gracilis Klebs, the amphipod Gammarus pulex L., and the moss Fontinalis antipyretica Hedw. were investigated under laboratory conditions. Common in all three species was the decline in performance (growth/velocity/respiration/oxygen evolution) when the concentration of wood ash exceeded 5 g/l and no adjustment of pH was done (alkaline solution). In contrast, different movement parameters (motility, upwards swimming and velocity) in E. gracilis (neutral conditions), and increased growth of F. antipyretica with increased concentrations of wood ash indicated that nutrients in the ash was bioavailable for these organisms. There was no evidence of toxic effects on the organisms from metals or other compounds as a result from exposure to wood ash solutions in the present studies.

    The field study was conducted in a forest area close to Bispgården, about 100 km NW from Sundsvall, Sweden. The catchment area (50 ha) of the stream Fanbergsbäcken was treated with wood ash in September of 2004 (3,000 kg/ha;selfhardened crush-ash). In general, both biological (diatoms) and chemical (pH, alkalinity, and aluminum (Al) measurements) indicators have shown no significant effect on acidification parameters from the addition of wood ash. There was, however, evidence of an increased pH during spring flood, accompanied with a decrease in the frequency of low pH values (<5.6) during spring flood. In addition to this, alkalinity was significantly higher in the period 2005-2006, compared to that of 2003. High concentrations of toxic forms of Al repeatedly occured in the stream Fanbergsbäcken, and the WAA did not affect the frequencies of high concentrations of toxic Al forms (<50 μg/l). Both the moss F. antipyretica and the leaves from Alnus incana displayed increased potassium (K) concentrations, although other nutrients did not increase from WAA. In conclusion, no evidence of WAA being effective in restoring or improving the ecological status of freshwater environments has been established, either in the literature or in the present field study. On the other hand, there were no indications of harmful effects due to WAA, either. However, we still do not know the effects of wood ash on several organisms (predominantly invertebrates) inhabiting small ponds and other, temporary or permanent, freshwater ecosystems. In the context of WAA, these environments and organisms have not attended any attention in the research published to date, and future studies are strongly encouraged.

  • 16.
    Arvidson, Catarina
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Genuspedagogers berättelser om makt och kontroll2014Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this thesis 14 gender pedagogues’ stories about power and control are described and analysed. Here the term gender pedagogue refers to educators who have participated in further training in gender and gender equality studies. The training programme was the result of an initiative taken by the former Social Democratic government. The intention of the government was that those who participated in the training programme would then work as resource persons in the work for gender equality in preschools and schools (Frånberg, 2010; Regeringen, 2001a, 2001b; Wahlgren, 2009). The purpose of this study is to describe and analyse the gender pedagogues’ access to power and control in work for change. The theoretical framework chosen for the study consists of Basil Bernsteins concepts classification and framing (Bernstein, 1977, 2000) and Hildur Ve’s (1999a, 1999b) use of the concepts technical limited rationality and care work rationality. The empirical evidence is based on observations in a seminar series on gender issues and semi-structured interviews. The results of the interviews are presented as stories which have been created in the interplay between the gender pedagogues and the interviewer. One conclusion that can be drawn from the stories is that power relations and gender patterns on many different levels influenced the possibilities of the gender pedagogues for power and control. Power and control in the relation between technical limited rationality and care work rationality is expressed in different ways. It is seen in the possibilities and descriptions of resistance and difficulties. Resistance and difficulties depended, according to the gender pedagogues, on the differences between their own view of knowledge and that of others. If gender and gender equality was not considered to be an important area of knowledge, possibilities for power and control decreased.

  • 17.
    Ashraf, Shakeel
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Thermal detector with integrated absorber structure for mid-IR gas detection2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Measurement of the concentration of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide(CO 2 ) and methane (CH 4 ), in the atmosphere has received significant attention in the last few decades. This work focusses on the development of high-performance thermopile detectors for use with the non-dispersive infrared (NDIR) measurements of such gases. The performance of the thermopile detectors could effectively be increased by selecting membrane materials with a low thermal conductivity value and an efficient infrared (IR) absorbing material and by selecting the materials with high Seebeck coefficient values. Graphite black paint can be used as a radiation absorber, as it has high absorption (80—93%) for a wide spectral range (2.5 μm — 20 μm). By using spray paint or a paint brush, the application of the absorber is simple and fast. However, the control over the processing process suffers with these simple methods. The thermal capacitance of the detector will rapidly increase due to uneven distribution and unknown thickness of the absorber, although the response of the thermopile detector will be maximum due to high absorption; however, the response time (τ th )for the detector will be longer.In order to improve the performance, IR absorbers have been designed to utilise the membrane (SU-8 epoxy) of the detector as an active part of the IR absorber. This utilisation of the SU-8 epoxy membrane will result in a maximum detector sensitivity and a minimum increase in both the thermal capacitance and thermal conductance of the thermopile detector. Absorber structures, based on SU-8 epoxy, with a narrow absorption band at 4.26 µm and a wider multi-layered absorption band at 3-6 µm, were designed, simulated, and fabricated, and their integration into the membrane of thermopile detectors have been presented. The response of the thermopile detector could also be increased by using materials with high Seebeck coefficient [1] values such as semiconductor materials, as they have higher Seebeckvalues compared to the metals. In the thesis, molybdenum disulfide (MoS 2 ) flakes were characterised, and Seebeck values were estimated through a measurement setup as a function of temperature difference (ΔT). The fabricated thermopile detectors were characterised, and the response time(τ th ) of a thermocouple with a multi-layered absorber structure has been estimated to be 21 ms. The detector has shown high responsivity value in the wavelength range of 3 µm – 4.5 µm, which is used for CO 2 and CH 4 detection. The thermopile detector was evaluated for CO 2 gas through a long-path-length NDIR platform. The results show that the evaluated thermopile could be used for the measurement of gas concentration down to levels of a few parts per million (ppm) by using the long-path-length NDIR platform.

  • 18.
    Audulv, Åsa
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Being creative and resourceful: Individuals’ abilities and possibilities for self-management of chronic illness2011Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Individuals’ self-management styles are crucial for how they manage to live with illness. Commonly investigated factors include social support, self-efficacy, health beliefs, and demographics. There is a gap in the literature with regard to in-depth studies of how those factors actually influence an individual’s self-management.

     

    The aim of this thesis was to investigate the underlying mechanisms of self-management from the perspective of individuals living with chronic illness.

     

    Interviews were conducted with 47 individuals with various chronic illnesses, some of them repeatedly over two and a half years (a total of 107 interviews). The material was analysed with; constructive grounded theory, content analysis, phenomenography, and interpretive description.

     

    The Self-management Support Model identified aspects that influenced participants’ self-management: economic and social situation, social support, views and perspectives on illness, attribution of responsibility, and ability to integrate self-management into an overall life situation. For example, individuals with a life-oriented or disease-oriented perspective on illness prioritized different aspects of self-management. People who attributed internal responsibility performed a more complex self-management regimen than individuals who attributed external responsibility. In conclusion, individuals who were creative and resourceful had a better chance of tailoring a self-management regimen that suited them well. People in more disadvantaged positions (e.g., financial strain, limited support, or severe intrusive illness) experienced difficulty in finding a method of self-management that fit their life situation.

     

    These findings can inspire healthcare providers to initiate a reflective dialogue about self-management with their patients.

  • 19.
    Bader, Sebastian
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    On the lifetime and usability of environmental monitoring wireless sensor networks2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Wireless sensor networks have been demonstrated, at an early stage in their development, to be a useful measurement technology for environmental monitoring applications. Based on their independence from existing infrastructures, wireless sensor networks can be deployed in virtually any location and provide sensor samples in a spatial and temporal resolution, which otherwise would only be achievable at high cost or involve significant work by humans.The feasibility of the usage of wireless sensor networks in real-world applications, however, is only maintained if certain technological challenges are overcome. Amongst these challenges, are the limited lifetime of the distributed sensor nodes, and user interfaces, which allow for the technology to be utilized in an efficient manner. Contributions to the solution of these challenges have been the objective of this thesis.

    After an analysis of the contributions wireless sensor networks can provide

    to the application domain of environmental monitoring, and the introduction

    to the restrictions, which are posed by a limited operational lifetime and low

    system usability, these issues are addressed at the system level of sensor nodedevices.

    The lifetime of sensor nodes, which is closely linked to the lifetime of the

    complete wireless sensor network, is addressed with regards to the energy

    efficiency of nodes, as well as the utilization of solar energy harvesting in

    order to increase the available energy resources. With respect to energy

    efficiency, an analysis has been performed of the contributions to the energy

    consumption of environmental monitoring sensor nodes, which leads to the

    desire to minimize the nodes' duty cycles and quiescent currents. A sensor

    node design is presented, which features energy efficiency as a key attribute by utilizingmodern semiconductor architectures. Moreover, an argument for the usage of synchronization-based, contention-free communication is made

    in order to reduce active communication periods and, thus, the duty cycle

    of a sensor node. A synchronization method with its focus on low protocol

    overhead is introduced as a basis for such communication forms. After an initial feasibility study in relation to using battery-less solar energy

    harvesting architectures in locations with limited solar irradiation, multiple

    architectural implementations are analyzed in a comparative manner.

    Among these comparisons is an analysis of short-termenergy storage devices in the form of double-layer capacitors and thin-film batteries, which provide prolonged component lifetimes than those for conventional secondary batteries, but which can only buffer for short periods of time due to their limited energy capacity. In order to be able to dimension such energy harvesting systems with respect to the individual application constraints at hand, state of charge simulations are proposed. Amethod for such simulations is presented and demonstrated for the implementation of an energy harvester model on a component basis. While the modeling in this manner is time consuming, the model can predict the state of charge of the energy buffer in the architecture with a high level of accuracy. Finally, a method for the systematic evaluation of solar energy harvesting architectures is presented. The presented method can be summarized as a solar energy harvesting testbed, which utilizes configurable energy harvesting circuits in order to create a deploy-once-test-many type of system. The output results of this testbed can significantly improve

    the efficiency of architecture comparisons and system modeling.

    Contributions to the improvement of the usability of wireless sensor nodes

    are made on two separate levels, namely, developer usability and end user

    usability. A method for the programming of sensor nodes based on hierarchical finite state machines is presented, which improves the usability of software development by creating familiarity for technically experienced

    users. Moreover, the utilization of finite state machine principles allows

    for the software to be developed in a systematic andmodular manner. As

    implemented applications typically require to be verified, which, in the environmental monitoring domain, usually results in outdoor deployments,

    usability considerations for sensor nodes are presented, which can simplify

    this process. Special attention has been paid in order for these improvements to be achieved with low overheads. While software development is a familiar concept for most system developers, this is not the case for the end users of these systems, who are typically domain experts. In order to allow for wireless sensor nodes to be operated

    by domain experts, a method for the configuration of sensor nodes has been proposed.The method uses a combination of graphical specification of the node behavior and a configurable sensor node. Theevaluation of this method, which has been based on a proof-of-concept implementation, demonstrated that the performance can remain high, while end users, without technical experience, are enabled to configure sensor nodes without prior training.

    In summary, the contributions, presented in this thesis, address system

    lifetime and usability with regards to the sensor node level. The results have

    led to the implementation of an energy efficient sensor node, which allows for the operation frombattery-less solar energy harvesting sources. Furthermore, support tools for the implementation of these nodes, both on the hardware and software level, have been proposed.

  • 20.
    Barac, Filip
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Computer and System science.
    Error mitigation in industrial wireless sensor networks: Corrupted packet forensics and recovery2016Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Wireless sensor networks (WSN) are gradually penetrating the industrial automation domain. This process is, however, inhibited by a number of challenges that need to be considered and addressed before WSN can serve the most demanding industrial applications. In the context of process automation, existing technology can only serve the three least critical application classes related to non-critical monitoring of slowly-changing physical variables. The main issue in that respect is the insufficient communication timeliness and reliability, caused by the influence of harsh radio environment and the infeasibility of applying advanced communication techniques, due to the poor computational power of low-cost specialized hardware. The goal of this work is to improve wireless communication reliability in industrial environments, where the proposed solutions are generally applicable to other WSN domains as well as radio environments. This research is based on the notion that corrupt packets contain valuable channel state information that can be leveraged to improve communication robustness. The research methodology used in this work is rather unconventional, compared to existing research, but also highly intuitive, bearing in mind that counteracting a phenomenon requires a thorough knowledge of its properties. In order to rectify the aforementioned challenges, this work makes the following three contributions. The first contribution is a comprehensive analysis of communication errors recorded in practically relevant scenarios in a number of industrial environments. The related literature is seemingly rich, but essentially poor, due to inadequate measurement objectives, environments, and scenarios. The main research outcome of this measurement campaign is a set of practically relevant conclusions, which can be used for the design of coding, interleaving and packet recovery schemes. The second contribution is the design of two packet recovery schemes, based on the knowledge about error patterns obtained in the industrial measurement campaign. The first scheme is a proposal for redefinition of the IEEE 802.15.4 physical layer, where digital errors are counteracted at the earliest stage in the receiver chain. The second scheme exploits the determinism in packet structure inherent to industrial communication. Both schemes significantly improve the correctability of corrupted packets received. The third contribution is a channel diagnostics algorithm that determines whether a packet was corrupt by multipath fading and attenuation or by wireless local area network interference. The algorithm is derived from the error traces collected in three industrial environments and tested at a fourth, previously unused, industrial site. The results of live tests verify the ability of the proposed algorithm to promptly reestablish communication after a sudden deterioration of channel quality.

  • 21.
    Bayat, Nazlin
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences. Mid Sweden University.
    Investigation of Surface Formation in As-Cast and Homogenized 6xxx Aluminium Billets2017Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The direct chill (DC) casting technique to produce billets for extrusion and ingots for rollingwas developed in the 1930s. The principle, which is still valid, is a two-stage cooling with a primary cooling at a mould surface followed by water spraying directly on the surface. Improvements of this technique have mainly focused on changes to the primary cooling, where a water-cooled metal mould has been replaced by different techniques to minimize cooling at this stage. The drive for development comes from the extrusion industry, which can increase the productivity and quality of extruded profiles by improving the billet surface appearance and structure. Hot top casting supported by airflow against the casting surface during the primary cooling is currently the standard procedure to achieve acceptable billet surfaces. The goal is to minimize the depth of the surface segregation zone, which is the governing factor for the appearance of different phases in the surface region. Billet surface quality is evaluated by quantifying surface appearance, segregation zone thickness, and  occurrence of large Mg2Si and β-particles near the surface. The β-Al5FeSi intermetallic phase and coarse Mg2Si particles have negative effects on extrudability and workability of 6xxx Al alloys billets. To achieve extruded products with a high surface quality the as-cast billets are  heat-treated before extrusion. During heat treatment the undesired intermetallic particles, i.e., β-AlFeSi platelets are transformed to rounded α-Al(FeMn)Si intermetallic phases.

    In this  research the formation of the surface segregation for smooth defect-free surfaces in both as-cast and homogenized billets was studied. In addition, the surfaces with defects such as wavy, spot and vertical drag defects were investigated and possible mechanisms for initiation of those defects were explained. Moreover, for a better understanding of the homogenization process in-situ studies of the heat treatment of 6082, 6005, 6060 and 6063 Al alloys were carried out by using a transmission electron microscope (TEM). Based on the observations, an explanation of the probable mechanisms taking place during transformation from β-to α-phase was presented.

  • 22.
    Berg, Jan-Erik
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Mathematics.
    Wood and fibre mechanics related to the thermomechanical pulping process2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The main objective of this thesis was to improve the understanding of some aspects on wood and fibre mechanics related to conditions in the thermomechanical pulping process. Another objective was to measure the power distribution between the rotating plates in a refiner.

     

    The thesis comprises the following parts:

    –A literature review aimed at describing fracture in wood and fibres as related to the thermomechanical pulping process

    –An experimental study of fracture in wood under compression, at conditions similar to those in feeding of chips into preheaters and chip refiners

    –An experimental study of the effect of impact velocity on the fracture of wood, related to conditions of fibre separation in the breaker bar zone in a chip refiner

    –A micromechanical model of the deterioration of wood fibres, related to the development of fibre properties during the intense treatment in the small gap in the refining zone

    –Measurements of the power distribution in a refiner.

     

    The fracture in wood under compression was investigated by use of acoustic emission monitoring. The wood was compressed in both lateral and longitudinal directions to predict preferred modes of deformation in order to achieve desired irreversible changes in the wood structure. It was concluded that the most efficient compression direction in this respect is longitudinal. Preferable temperature at which the compression should be carried out and specific energy input needed in order to achieve substantial changes in the wood structure were also given.

     

    The fibre separation step and specifically the effect of impact velocity on the fracture energy were studied by use of a falling weight impact tester. The fracture surfaces were also examined under a microscope. An increase in impact velocity resulted in an increase in fracture energy.

    In the thermomechanical pulping process the fibres are subjected to lateral compression, tension and shear which causes the creation of microcracks in the fibre wall. This damage reduces the fibre wall stiffness. A simplified analytical model is presented for the prediction of the stiffness degradation due to the damage state in a wood fibre, loaded in uni-axial tension or shear. The model was based on an assumed displacement field together with the minimum total potential energy theorem. For the damage development an energy criterion was employed. The model was applied to calculate the relevant stiffness coefficients as a function of the damage state. The energy consumption in order to achieve a certain damage state in a softwood fibre by uniaxial tension or shear load was also calculated. The energy consumption was found to be dependent on the microfibril angle in the middle secondary wall, the loading case, the thicknesses of the fibre cell wall layers, and conditions such as moisture content and temperature. At conditions, prevailing at the entrance of the gap between the plates in a refiner and at relative high damage states, more energy was needed to create cracks at higher microfibril angles. The energy consumption was lower for earlywood compared to latewood fibres. For low microfibril angles, the energy consumption was lower for loading in shear compared to tension for both earlywood and latewood fibres. Material parameters, such as initial damage state and specific fracture energy, were determined by fitting of input parameters to experimental data.

    Only a part of the electrical energy demand in the thermomechanical pulping process is considered to be effective in fibre separation and developing fibre properties. Therefore it is important to improve the understanding of how this energy is distributed along the refining zone.

    Investigations have been carried out in a laboratory single-disc refiner. It was found that a new developed force sensor is an effective way of measuring the power distribution within the refining zone. The collected data show that the tangential force per area and consequently also the power per unit area increased with radial position.

    The results in this thesis improve the understanding of the influence of some process parameters in thermomechanical pulping related wood and fibre mechanics such as loading rate, loading direction, moisture content and temperature to separate the fibres from the wood and to achieve desired irreversible changes in the fibre structure. Further, the thesis gives an insight of the spatial energy distribution in a refiner during thermomechanical pulping.

     

     

  • 23.
    Berglund, Tomas
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Humanities.
    Det goda faderskapet i svenskt 1800-tal2007Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
  • 24.
    Billmayer, Jakob
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Education.
    Ska dörren vara öppen?: Disciplin i klassrummet i Sverige och Tyskland2015Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of this study is to investigate discipline in German and Swedishclassrooms and describe its cultural contexts. In countries with compulsory educa-tion, it must be assumed that not all students voluntarily attend classes. The man-datory presence of students combined with the ban on corporal punishment inschools means that classroom interaction has to be organized according to certainmanners and rules (Luhmann, 2002a:108a). These rules are understood here as dis-cipline meaning the organization and control of individuals and their actions overspace and time (Foucault, 1987/1975). This study assumes similarities in the funda-mental disciplinary mechanisms, although different contexts (here Germany andSweden) will create different concrete manifestations of the phenomenon. Since theobservation of cultural contexts is not as self-evident and direct as the observationof classroom interactions of teachers and students, the theoretical considerationshere include a detailed discussion of methodology for observing culture. Startingwith Alfred Schütz’ concept of ideal types and Niklas Luhmann’s theory on massmedia, it is argued that culture can be observed through the products of mass me-dia. The empirical data for this study consists of field studies in the form of obser -vations in German and Swedish classrooms as well as the examination of Germanand Swedish films and television series about teachers and students. The classroomobservations were used to create ideal typical descriptions of different implementa-tions of disciplinary procedure. Based on the analysis of teacher figures in variousGerman and Swedish films and television series, several “good” and “bad” teachertypes were initially identified. Combining the two results allowed conclusions tobe made about correlations between disciplinary order and whether a teacher isconsidered “good” or “bad”. This review of the various types of order is the basisfor the description of cultural contexts. The results of classroom observations andfilm studies and their discussion in relation to prior Swedish research, gives thepicture of a cultural context in which various forms of classroom order are avail-able, in which they are critically discussed and also can exist in parallel to each oth-er. On the other hand, the German context seems to allow only one form ofclassroom order, both in actual school operations as well as in the mass media rep -resentation and scientific reflection.

  • 25.
    Bjärtå, Anna
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    FEAR - A process influenced by concurrent processing demands2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Fear is a central aspect in mammalian evolution, prompting escape from and avoidance of threat and dangers. Therefore, it is reasonable to believe that we have a well developed system to detect dangers and quickly respond to them. It has been shown that threatening information has an advantage in information processing; it seems to promote a rapid capture of selective attention and puts demand on processing resources. It has been suggested that the elicitation of fear occurs automatically, and that it is independent of and impenetrable to cognition.

    The idea with the present research is that fear processing is dependent on all concurrent internal or external processing demands. One visual search study (Study II) and two secondary task studies (Study I & III) have been conducted to investigate if external or internal distraction can interfere with fear processing. In order to provoke fear responses, spider or snake fearful individuals have been exposed to pictures of their feared stimulus. The aim of Study II was to investigate if the selective attention to fear stimuli could be influenced by contextual factors, such as the nature of the distracting stimuli in a visual search. Study I and III aimed to investigate manipulation of resources allocated to fear stimuli. In Study I, task demand was used as the manipulation, and in Study III an internal cognitive directive was used. The results from these studies indicate that fear is susceptible to manipulation by both external and internal means. By changing circumstances in the surrounding or in the individuals’ internal states, responses to threatening stimuli can be altered. This means that processing of threatening stimuli is influenced by other concurrent processing demands, suggesting that a fear response is not occurring as an isolated and impenetrable process. In an evolutionary perspective, a fear system that is easily triggered but has access to cognitive evaluation at all times ought to be far more flexible, thus creating a better chance for survival than a modular and impenetrable fear system.

  • 26.
    Björklund, Glenn
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Metabolic and Cardiovascular Responses During Variable Intensity Exercise2010Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Previous research investigating endurance sports from a physiological perspectivehas mainly used constant or graded exercise protocols, although the nature ofsports like cross-country skiing and road cycling leads to continuous variations inworkload. Current knowledge is thus limited as regards physiological responses tovariations in exercise intensity. Therefore, the overall objective of the present thesiswas to investigate cardiovascular and metabolic responses to fluctuations inexercise intensity during exercise. The thesis is based on four studies (Studies I-IV);the first two studies use a variable intensity protocol with cardiorespiratory andblood measurements during cycling (Study I) and diagonal skiing (Study II). InStudy III one-legged exercise was used to investigate muscle blood flow duringvariable intensity exercise using PET scanning, and Study IV was performed toinvestigate the transition from high to low exercise intensity in diagonal skiing,with both physiological and biomechanical measurements. The current thesisdemonstrates that the reduction in blood lactate concentration after high-intensityworkloads is an important performance characteristic of prolonged variableintensity exercise while cycling and diagonal skiing (Studies I-II). Furthermore,during diagonal skiing, superior blood lactate recovery was associated with a highaerobic power (VO2max) (Study II). Respiratory variables such as VE/VO2, VE/VCO2and RER recovered independently of VO2max and did not reflect the blood lactate oracid base levels during variable intensity exercise during either cycling or diagonalskiing (Studies I-II). There was an upward drift in HR over time, but not inpulmonary VO2, with variable intensity exercise during both prolonged cyclingand diagonal skiing. As a result, the linear HR-VO2 relationship that wasestablished with a graded protocol was not present during variable intensityexercise (Studies I-II). In Study III, blood flow heterogeneity during one-leggedexercise increased when the exercise intensity decreased, but remained unchangedbetween the high intensity workloads. Furthermore, there was an excessiveincrease in muscular VO2 in the consecutive high-intensity workloads, mainlyexplained by increased O2 extraction, as O2 delivery and blood flow remainedunchanged. In diagonal skiing (Study IV) the arms had a lower O2 extraction thanthe legs, which could partly be explained by their longer contact phase along withmuch higher muscle activation. Furthermore, in Study IV, the O2 extraction in botharms and legs was at the upper limit during the high intensity workload with nofurther margin for increase. This could explain why no excessive increase inpulmonary VO2 occurred during diagonal skiing (Study II), as increased O2extraction is suggested to be the main reason for this excessive increase in VO2(Study III).

  • 27.
    Björkman Randström, Kerstin
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Nursing Sciences.
    Hemmet som arena för äldres rehabilitering2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of the thesis was to study home rehabilitation as experienced by multidisciplinary teams, older people and their family members. The thesis is based on four studies (I-IV), all of which used a qualitative descriptive design. The data consisted of focus group interviews with rehabilitation practitioners working in teams in local health care services (I), interviews with seniors, i.e. over 65 years, who, because of illness or injury had been hospitalized and where their rehabilitation continued in their own home environment (II,III,IV) and interviews with family members involved in home rehabilitation (II).

    Study I showed the importance of meeting the individual needs of the elderly person while applying a rehabilitative approach to provide help, without compromising the individual´s independence. It was imperative that the team reflected on how to perform professionally in order to develop a rehabilitative approach in their daily work. The results show that the team regarded home rehabilitation as having a positive effect on the seniors. However, it was less suitable if the individuals in question were seriously ill and therefore felt less safe at home. Respect for the integrity of the individual in their own homes as well as the involvement of their family members in the rehabilitation process, were emphasized. The results showed that in order to develop cooperation within the team of team members it was necessary to clarify the duties and responsibilities of the different groups of healthcare professionals involved. It was emphasized, that there was a need to enhance the psychosocial competence of the team regarding senior care. Study II revealed that the elderly individuals themselves experienced their rehabilitation as a balance between sensing what their body could actually cope with and what was realistically acceptable to achieve a feeling of well-being. The feeling of security that a member of the family was at hand, proved vital for the individuals to dare to attempt the rehabilitation exercises and other everyday activities. Results show that the individuals are uncomfortable with having to be dependent on others. Family members were involved in the rehabilitation process by being on-hand, providing support and generally helping out, all of which can be considered as quite ordinary, yet it was challenging to know when to help in the right way. Unfamiliarity with technical aids and appliances was cause for frustration. Results showed that the elderly individuals and their families alike consider the home environment to be a contributing factor in facilitating the rehabilitation process. However, what made this difficult was when the boundaries for the home were breached by healthcare staff coming and going in and out of one´s own home. Study III shows several aspects of senior care, in everyday life and society in general, that have facilitating or hindering impacts on participation in exercise rehabilitation in the home environment. The results are described according to International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) in 19 categories in the domain of environmental factors. Facilitating factors include access to aids and equipment, a physical environment which enables exercise and support from family members, friends and healthcare practitioners. The results showed the importance of an empathetic approach when healthcare practitioners meet older people in their own home environment. The results indicate that home rehabilitation does not fully meet the rehabilitation needs of the elderly. Study IV describes personal factors such as inner strength, motivation, commitment and willingness to achieve positive results in rehabilitation extending over several years. Rehabilitation is described in physical and psychological phases that evolved into dealing with physical impairment effecting everyday activities. The results showed the importance of adequate information, the importance of social support and accessibility to healthcare professionals during the rehabilitation process. The thesis contributes to an increased understanding of how multidisciplinary teams, the elderly individuals themselves and their families experience rehabilitation in the home environment. The findings in this thesis can contribute to discussions about how home rehabilitation as a form of senior care can be organized in ways to best support elderly individuals in need of rehabilitation and their family members according to their own experiences. This can benefit individual participants and also promote the development of the healthcare profession. This thesis has also demonstrated the possibility to implement the ICF as a tool for describing healthcare needs in rehabilitation nursing.

  • 28.
    Blid, Mats
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Work.
    Ett folkhem för alla?: Kommunala insatser mot hemlöshet2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
    Abstract [en]

    The overarching aim of this dissertation is to explore and describe Swedish local authorities’ measures to prevent and manage homelessness; how these measures diverge between different municipal categories; what factors predict homelessness, provisions of accommodation and cov-erage rates between the number of accommodations and the respective municipalities’ housing interventions.

    Measures studied are policies and housing interventions. The housing interventions re-ferred to here are those provided by or through the social welfare authorities to persons living with unstable housing or who are homeless. The interventions can be divided into two main categories: 1) preventive interventions in the form of daily-life support, usually in the form of personnel support in the individual’s own apartment, designed to help persons at risk of becom-ing homeless to remain housed and prevent eviction; 2) accommodation support for persons who are already homeless and in need of housing. Such accommodations may be more or less temporary, more or less integrated and include a greater or lesser amount of care.

    Two sets of data were collected for the study: 1) a case study of two category-housing programmes using both qualitative and quantitative data; 2) a survey of 147 randomly chosen municipalities (about half of the municipalities in Sweden) to explore the prevalence and charac-teristics of policies and housing interventions.

    Findings from the case study show that special-category housing has positive direct effects on the housing stability of the residents and their feelings regarding their quality of life, but does not have a direct effect on their substance misuse. Moreover, the increased housing stability seems to be more a direct effect of the person having stayed on the programme, rather than a long-term effect. Furthermore, although their quality of life improves, the residents still experi-ence a lack of belonging and feel that their lives lack meaningful content.

    On the national level, the findings show that an array of housing interventions divided into 12 sub-categories is offered to counteract homelessness. These categories vary along two central dimensions: care and normality. The two most frequent types of housing interventions in all types of municipalities are daily-life support and social contracts. Other housing interventions are marginal compared with these two. There is greater fluctuation between municipalities in the level of care provided than in the level of normality. Furthermore, the more densely populated municipalities are more highly engaged in developing housing policies and the administrative means to handle them. Such policies, however, seem to decrease the level of normality without promoting levels of care.

    When exploring factors that predict homelessness, the findings show that urbanisation is central to understanding variations in homelessness, not only in the largest cities but also in less densely populated areas. In addition, higher rent levels and more of aggregated psychiatric prob-lems in the municipality seem to increase homelessness. The apartment rate and the proportion of public housing within the stock of apartments are both important for the possibility to pro-vide accommodations. Moreover, the proportion of single-parent households seems to enhance the need to provide such accommodations. Political majority and the functional organisation of the social services both seem to have an impact on the coverage rates. Thus, the findings indicate that the municipalities have various options for managing factors that impact on the homeless-ness rate.

    Keywords: housing interventions, level of care, level of normality, policies, municipality, predicting homelessness

  • 29.
    Blomquist, Nicklas
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
    Large-Scale Graphene Production for Environmentally Friendly and Low-Cost Energy Storage: Production, Coating, and Applications2019Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    There is great demand for energy-efficient, environmentally sustainable, and cost-effective electrical energy storage devices. One important aspect of this demand is the need for automotive electrification to achieve more energy-efficient transportation at a reasonable cost, thus supporting a fossil-fuel free society. Another important aspect is the requirement for energy storage in the growing field of renewable energy production from wind and solar sources, which generates an irregular supply of electricity due to weather conditions.Much of the research in this area has been conducted in the field of battery technology with impressive results, but the need for rapid storage devices such as supercapacitors is growing. Due to the excellent ability of supercapacitors to handle short peak power pulses with high efficiency along with their long lifetime and superior cyclability, their implementations range from small consumer electronics to electric vehicles and stationary grid applications. Supercapacitors also have the potential to complement batteries to improve pulse efficiency and lifetime of the system, however, the cost of supercapacitors is a significant issue for large-scale commercial use, leading to a demand for sustainable, low-cost materials and simplified manufacturing processes. An important way to address this need is to develop a cost-efficient and environment-friendly large-scale process to produce highly conductive nanographites, such as graphene and graphite nanoplatelets, along with methods to manufacture low-cost electrodes from large area coating.

    In this thesis, I present a novel process to mechanically exfoliate industrial quantities of nanographite from graphite in an aqueous environment with low energy consumption and at controlled shear conditions. The process is based on hydrodynamic tube-shearing and can produce both multilayer graphene and nanometer-thick and micrometer-wide flakes of nanographite. I also describe the production of highly conductive and robust carbon composites based on the addition of nanocellulose during production; these are suitable as electrodes in applications ranging from supercapacitors and batteries to printed electronics and solar cells.Furthermore I demonstrate a scalable route for roll-to-roll coating of the nanographite-nanocellulose electrode material and propose a novel aqueous, low-cost, and metal-free supercapacitor concept with graphite foil functioning as the current collector. The supercapacitors possessedmore than half the specific capacitance of commercial units but achieved a material cost reduction of more than 90 %, demonstrating anenvironment-friendly, low-cost alternative to conventional supercapacitors.

  • 30.
    Blusi, Madeleine
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Nursing Sciences.
    E-health and information- and communication technology (ICT) as support systems for older family caregivers in rural areas2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The overall objective of the thesis was to investigate how older family caregivers in rural areas experienced participation in an e-health based caregiver support system. Participants were 95 caregivers allocated to intervention group (n=63) and control group (n=32). The thesis had a mixed method design and is based on four original articles (I-IV). Data was collected through web-camera interviews (I-III), telephone interviews (II,IV) and questionnaires (II,IV) after 1.5 years of using e-health support. Quantitative data was analyzed using comparative statistics, multiple linear regression and logistic regression. Qualitative data was analyzed with content analysis. Article I showed that the caregivers, despite lacking experience from using computers, were able to adopt the new technology, with help from support nurses and family. Caregivers felt e-health helped them to regain social inclusion. Article II had a comparative design, comparing e-health support with conventional caregiver support. Caregivers using e-health were more satisfied with their support and found it to be available, flexible and helping them enhance caregiver competence. Control group caregivers were less satisfied with support and experienced unmet needs. Article III showed that e-health can reduce caregivers’ feelings of isolation. Two themes were created, Expanding the concept of place and Developing networks. Article IV revealed that caregivers used e-health frequently, experienced benefits from using it and had become more independent. Support nurses were disappointed about the decrease in contact with caregivers, and also acknowledged a need for developing the professional nursing role while working with e-health. Conclusions drawn from the findings were that participants experienced benefits from e-health support and it helped them become more independent. Swedish municipalities are obliged to provide caregiver support, the findings from the study are valid to conclude that e-health support are as good as, or even more effective, than conventional support for older family caregivers in rural areas.

  • 31.
    Bogren, Maria
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Socialt kapital - relationer och tillit - för utveckling av kvinnors företagande2015Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Women’s enterprises are seen as a resource in the development of both regions and countries. Despite this, however, research has shown that women’s businesses do not grow at the same extent as men's businesses. It is therefore of interest to identify the problems and obstacles women entrepreneurs face that negatively affect their companies’ growth, and how supportive efforts should best be structured. Studies have shown that a lack of access to financial capital has been a major obstacle in the development of women's businesses and also that entre­preneurship has been dominantly male-coded, where men as entrepreneurs are seen as the norm in society. In addition, studies have shown that women business owners have limited networks and do not use network contacts as efficiently as men, plus that they lack role models. Developing social capital, leading to in­creased opportunities to gain access to resources, can lead to development in women's businesses. Previous studies on social capital as a contribution to enter­prise development often focus either on relationships or trust and further studies on the development processes from which social capital evolves are therefore nee­ded. The aim of this thesis is to increase the knowledge of how the development of social capital can be understood by illustrating and analyzing the characteristics of relationships and trust, and to give examples of how this can be stimulated in deve­lopment programs for women entrepreneurs.

    This thesis consists of three studies – a case study was conducted over two years in a development program with women entrepreneurs from Norway and Sweden, a survey was conducted of women business owners in Norway and Sweden, and another survey was conducted of project managers of development projects aimed to stimulate women's entrepreneurship in Sweden.

    The results from the four papers of this thesis show that personal networks, family, relatives and friends are perceived as supportive relationships for women entrepreneurs. Those who have a heterogeneous network exhibit a greater willing­ness to enter into new relationships than those who do not, and trust affects willing­ness to develop relationships in development programs. Homogeneity of the group of participating women in programs proves to be important initially, while heterogeneity becomes more important over time. When business identity develops, an increased professionalization of the women´s network is shown. Social activity with time spent and engagement in a development program contri­bute to the development of both relationships and trust, and the time aspect is important when it comes to trust in the program's organizers.

    Based on these results, several aspects of relationships and trust that can be sti­mu­lated in development programs have been identified. A demonstrated willing­ness to evolve can reflect how motivated and interested participants are in partici­pa­ting in a development program. When working with the composition of the group of participants, homogeneity and heterogeneity should be taken into account. Social activity by time spent and commitment shown, is something that strengthens the development of relationships and trust. A confidentiality agree­ment, which was an important symbolic document, contributes to increased trust between all involved in the program. Program organizers´ social credentials, skills and organizational affiliation are aspects that can be recognized for institutional trust as well as their social activity in the program. Stimulating the development of both relationships and trust is an important reason for revising a program´s structure and content.

    The conclusions from this thesis are that women entrepreneurs with a heterogeneous network demonstrate willingness to enter into new relationships, that both relational and trust-building processes are important for the develop­ment of social capital, and that context needs to be taken into account when designing development programs.

  • 32.
    Borglund, Erik A.M.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Design for Recordkeeping: Areas of Improvement2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis is about problems related to design of information systems in which records are born and managed. The proactive approach has been derived from new archival theories suited for electronic recordkeeping, and implies that electronic records must, at the time of creation fulfil their current and future requirements. Information systems where records are born and managed should, based upon a proactive approach, meet recordkeeping requirements. This thesis is based upon a four-year research effort and consists of seven research articles that present the results of the research. The objective is to contribute to knowledge of design recommendations for information systems, in which records are born and managed. The main result of this thesis is identification of five areas that can affect and improve the design of information systems in which records are born and managed. First: A set of empirically and theoretical grounded characteristics of records are presented. Those characteristics have to be complemented with organization-defined characteristics. Second: this research has contributed a conceptualization of use of records and users of records. The notion of known use/user, and unknown use/user has been introduced. Design becomes difficult because requirements of unknown users are difficult to conceptualize. Third: The Recordkeeping Quality Assessment model (RQAM) is presented. The model implies a holistic quality approach to recordkeeping, and intends to be used as a basis for quality assessment, and as a reference model in design situations to achieve high recordkeeping quality. Fourth: Two dominant different views on records are presented. Private organizations appraise records principally upon business values, and public organisations base their appraisal criteria upon accountability and legislative values. The two views on records should be brought into one view and form a risk management-like appraisal. Fifth: Proactivity is a way of thinking and should be applied on several levels in the recordkeeping environment: to the electronic record, to the information system where the electronic record is born and managed, to the organization, and to the user.

  • 33.
    Breistein, Palle
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Mathematics.
    Development of highly enantioselective organocatalyzed transformations2011Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 34.
    Brouder, Patrick
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Tourism Studies and Geography.
    Tourism Development in Peripheral Areas: Processes of Local Innovation and Change in Northern Sweden2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Tourism has reached almost all regions of the world and has had a notable growth in the peripheral regions of Europe. Attempts at tourism development in rural and peripheral areas have resulted in widely varying outcomes and have often been undertaken as a last resort by communities. Despite mixed results, tourism persists as a tool for regional development. There has not been so much research on the evolving nature of tourism entrepreneurship in regions where tourism is relatively new as a commercial/entrepreneurial activity, e.g., the rural and peripheral north of Europe. This thesis presents Northern Sweden as a regional case study but it is reasonable to assume that the research results are transferable to similar regions with a similar range of nature-based tourism in small communities.

     

    The results show that tourism stakeholders co-evolve over time even though formal networks are loose and project-based (Article 1). Tourism firm survival improves for entrepreneurs with previous related experience but there is not necessarily an outsider advantage and new tourism firms contribute to job creation despite high rates of attrition (Article II). Protected areas with unique attributes (e.g., Laponia) can attract distant entrepreneurs but must manage these stakeholders more proactively (Article III). Climate change is a long-term challenge with firms not needing to adapt yet but facing differing exposures dependent on location and firm mobility (Article IV). Finally, evolutionary economic geography helps to better understand the processes of change in tourism in rural and peripheral areas (Article V).

  • 35.
    Bäckström, Britt
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    En tillvaro av utanförskap: En longitudinell studie om att vara i medelåldern och närstående till en person som insjuknat i stroke2010Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Ett övergripande syfte med avhandling var att belysa den levda erfarenheten av att vara i medelåldern och närstående till en person som insjuknat i stroke för första gången och studera de närståendes erfarenheter av förändringen över tid under det första året efter utskrivning till hemmet, samt att belysa innebörden av medelålders makars levda erfarenhet av relationen till en partner som insjuknat i stroke; under det första året. Avhandlingen omfattar 4 delstudier (I-IV) som sammantaget utgör en longitudinell studie. Tio närstående (40 - 64 år) till personer insjuknade i stroke (förstagångs insjuknande) med förväntat hjälpbehov överstigande 6 månader, inkluderades konsekutivt i studien och följdes under ett år efter utskrivning till hemmet. Narrativa intervjuer utfördes en månad (I, n=10), sex månader (II, n=9) och ett år (III, n=9) efter utskrivning till hemmet. Bland de närstående i delstudie I-III fanns fyra kvinnliga makar (gifta; n=2, sambo; n=2) som utgjorde deltagarna i delstudie IV. För att analysera data användes en fenomenologisk hermeneutisk tolkningsmetod (I, IV) och kvalitativ innehållsanalys (II, III).

    Avhandlingen visar på att vara i medelåldern och närstående till en person som insjuknat i stroke, efter utskrivningen till hemmet, innebär att gå igenom en förändringsprocess i olika steg. Upplevelsen var att en månad efter utskrivningen kämpa för att inte tappa fotfästet i en otrygg livssituation, där de upplevde ett främlingskap inför situationen, sig själv och personen som insjuknat i stroke. Ändå svarade de närstående oreflekterat an ett krav på ansvar och omsorg (I, IV). Efter sex månader visade de närstående på en kamp för att integrera förändringarna orsakade av stroke till det dagliga livet, förlika sig med förlusterna och att hitta balans och en ny normalitet (II). Makarna förde en kamp för att återfå känslan av samhörighet med sin partner och hitta tillbaka till sin egen identitet som maka, vilket bara var möjligt i frånvaro av en vårdarroll (II, IV). Efter ett år tvingades de närstående att erkänna, lära sig hantera och förlika sig med förändringarna orsakade av strokeinsjuknandet (III). Makarna fick lämna en ‛bild‛ av hur deras partner en gång varit. En trygg relation i samvaro och jämlikhet med en känsla av ‛vi‛ förändrades och blev främmande och ojämlik och ersattes med en känsla av ‛jag‛ och ‛du‛. För att härda ut måste makarna omvärdera relationen till sin partner och målen i livet. Även om partnern fortfarande var i livet visade makarna en sorg och ett lidande beroende på förlusten av den relation de en gång haft till personen som insjuknat i stroke (IV). Avhandlingen visar även att de närstående inte upplevde sig varit sedda och bekräftade av den professionella vårdpersonalen i sin egen situation som närstående. Vårdens fokus upplevdes hela tiden enbart vara den sjuke och främst de fysiska förändringarna hos personen med stroke. De närståendes upplevelse var av oförståelse för innebörden av de kognitiva och emotionella förändringarna hos den sjuke (I, II, III). De närstående gav så småningom också upp sin strävan att bli bekräftade vilket innebar att bära på ett lidande som inte blev synliggjort (III). En annan del av förändringsprocessen var att de närstående gick ifrån självförnekelse med fokus på den som insjuknat och nuet (I), till en medvetenhet om att ta egna behov i beaktande (II) och att även fokusera på eget välbefinnande för att orka i en framtid (III). Avhandlingen visar att de medelålders närstående går igenom en transitionsprocess, där upplevelser av förluster, förändringar, lidande och sorg finns relaterat till; dåtid, nutid och framtid. De närståendes upplevelse av oförståelse och brist på känsla av bekräftelse i deras livssituation under året efter utskrivningen till hemmet, kan leda till en känsla av ensamhet och övergivenhet både inom de närstående själva, men också i förhållande till andra och världen utanför.

  • 36.
    Bäckström, Ingela
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering and Sustainable Development.
    On the Relationship between Sustainable Health and Quality Management: Leadership and organizational behaviours from Swedish organizations2009Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Sickness absence not only causes significant costs for organizations but also leads to other negative consequences for individuals and societies. Previous research has shown that working with organizational values within Quality Management affects job satisfaction and results in increased profitability and customer satisfaction. There would, in addition, seem to be great gains if managers, by working with Quality Management, can manage to establish sustainable health among co-workers.

     

    The purpose of the research described in this thesis was to examine how Quality Management could be practised in order to support sustainable health among co-workers and what it is within Quality Management that influences sustainable co-worker health. Accordingly, the purpose was also to contribute to the understanding of the relation between sustainable health and Quality Management. To fulfil this purpose, three research questions were asked. The results are described in three parts related to the three research questions and are the product of six case studies carried out in seven different organizations.

     

    Interviews with managers and workshops with co-workers were carried out to investigate how Quality Management can be practised within organizations in order to promote sustainable co-worker health. These investigations took place in four organizations that had received awards. Three had been awarded for their excellence in leadership, work environment and co-workership, along with improved profitability; one for its successful implementation of quality programmes. The results are descriptions of methodologies, behaviours, values and organization structure used by the organizations to support sustainable health. These are exemplified with practical examples. The methodologies, behaviours, values, and organizational structure are considered possible for other organizations to adopt and all of them are already supported in the quality, management and leadership literature. Support from the health literature is also found for most of the behaviours, methodologies, values, and organizational structure.

     

    Surveys and focus groups interviews were carried out in five different organizations in order to find out what is of most importance when practising Quality Management in order to influence sustainable co-worker health. The results pointed to ‘Leadership Commitment’ as the most central of the values for achieving sustainable health among the co-workers. Furthermore, the values ‘Continuous Improvements’, ‘Participation of Everybody’ and ‘Customer Orientation’ were found to be related to sustainable health among the co-workers. The values ‘Leadership Commitment’ and the value ‘Participation of Everybody’ were then further elaborated to find aspects of importance for sustainable co-worker health. From the value ‘Leadership Commitment’ four aspects were extracted. These were labelled ‘Empathy’, ‘Presence and Communication’, ‘Integrity’, and ‘Continuity’. The results showed relations between the value ‘Leadership Commitment’ within Quality Management and sustainable health among the co-workers. Thus it is essential for leaders to work in accordance with that value to achieve results in the work towards sustainable co-worker health. The results indicate that this requires management and leadership that are characterized by the aspects above. The leaders have to:

     

    • Really understand the co-workers and their work situation.

    • Be present and available for co-workers and communicate with them.

    • Act as a role model, be fair and keep their promises.

    • Stay in their positions long enough to build up trust and confidence.

     

    The value ‘Participation of Everybody’ has also been shown to be related to sustainable health among the co-workers. This indicates that it is important to work in accordance with that value in the struggle to achieve sustainable health among the co-workers. The results imply that this value is characterized by the aspects ‘Development’, ‘Influence’ and ‘Being informed’. This could be done by:

     

    • Giving the co-workers opportunities to develop their skills and develop personally.

    • Letting the co-workers influence their work situation and taking suggestions and proposals from them seriously.

    • Having good communication within the whole organization.

     

    To manage this; the managers have to delegate more and empower the co-workers.

     

    These results were then further elaborated within another organization in order to develop a measurement approach that can clarify the extent to which the values, ‘Leadership Commitment’ and ‘Participation of Everybody’ permeate an organization. The developed measurement approach can be used to clarify the extent to which the organization is practising the health-promoting values within Quality Management and in what areas improvement is needed to increase co-worker health. The approach can also help the organization to detect those shortcomings within the management which are important for co-worker well-being. The developed measurement approach can be used to establish and enhance co-worker health by improving their well-being, satisfaction and motivation.

  • 37.
    Bång, Joakim
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Mathematics.
    Purification, Stereoisomeric Analysis and Quantification of Biologically Active Compounds in Extracts from Pine Sawflies, African Butterflies and Orchid Bees2011Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Stereochemistry plays an important role in nature because biologically important molecules such as amino acids, nucleotides and sugars, only exist in enantiomerically pure forms. Semiochemicals carry messages, between the same species (pheromones) and between different species (allelochemicals). Both pheromones and allelochemicals can be used as environmentally friendly pest management. Many semiochemicals, i.e. behaviour modifying chemicals, consist of pure or well-defined mixtures of stereoisomers, where some of the other stereoisomers can be repellent. It is therefore important to be able to separate them to produce a synthetic pheromone in a mixture that is attractive.

    Pine sawflies are a family of insects that in some cases can be severe defoliators of conifer trees. Diprion pini, Diprion similis and Neodiprion sertifer are severe pests for these trees and have got the most attention in pine sawfly pheromone studies. The pheromone precursors are stored in the female body as long-chain secondary alcohols, which, when released, are esterified to acetates or propionates. The alcohols are chiral, and normally one of the stereoisomer is the main pheromone component, sometimes possible together with other stereoisomers as essential minor components.

    Bicyclus is a genus of African butterflies, and especially Bicyclus anynana has become a popular model for the study of life history evolution, morphology, mating choice and genetics. The wing pattern of Bicyclus differs depending on the season, with large eyespots during the rain-season and small or absent spots during the dry season.

     Euglossa is one of the genera among the orchid bees in the Neotropics that does not produce its own pheromone. Instead, the males collect fragrances from orchids and other sources and store them in a pocket in their hind legs. Both Bicyclus and Euglossa use semiochemicals similar to pine sawflies, and thus can be analysed by the same methods.

    Pheromones and other semiochemicals in insects are often present in low amounts in a complex matrix, and purification of the sample before chemical analysis is often required. A common method is gradient elution on a solid phase silica column. Separation of stereoisomers can be achieved either by using a column with a chiral stationary phase (CSP) or with pre-column derivatisation using a column with an achiral stationary phase (ASP) or a combination of both, with mass detection as the dominant detection method. The purpose of this work has been to improve the purification method, find suitable methods to separate the stereoisomers of secondary alcohols, and to apply this on extracts of insects.

    By selecting the right fractions to collect during gradient elution the purification method was optimised. To reduce plasticizer contamination from ordinary columns, solid phase columns of Teflon or glass were used. For pre-column derivatisation of different chiral alcohols various acid chlorides were tested. For the pine sawfly pheromone precursors enantiopure (2S)-2-acetoxypropionyl chloride was the best choice. To separate some of the stereoisomers achiral 2-naphthoyl chloride was used. For derivatisation of 6,10,14-trimethylpentadecan-2-ol (R)-trans-chrysanthemoyl chloride was the best choice. The derivatised alcohols were separated on different columns, both chiral and non-chiral. Varian FactorFour VF-23ms was chosen as a general-purpose column, the Agilent HP-88 column was the best column with an ASP of those tested, and the Chiraldex B-PA column (CSP) was the only one that could separate all eight stereoisomers of derivatised 3,7-dimethylundecan-2-ol, 3,7-dimethyldodecan-2-ol, and 3,7-dimethyltridecan-2-ol.

    To determine the stereoisomeric purity of standard solutions used in field experiments and extracts of different species of insects the optimised methods were applied. For extracts from B. anynana, Euglossa and Neodiprion lecontei this work describe the first determination of the stereochemistry of some of their semiochemicals.

    For the determination of the stereochemistry of chiral semiochemicals the methods for purification and separation presented herein have shown to be of great value. The results will hopefully contribute to a better understanding of the communication among insects, and ultimately to a more environmentally friendly pest control.

  • 38.
    Bång, Åsa
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
    Genetic variation and gene flow in riparian populations of Filipendula ulmaria2007Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 39.
    Cao, Cao
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Automatic Synthesis of Partitioned FSMs Based on Mixed Synchronous/Asynchronous State Memory2007Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 40.
    Carlerby, Heidi
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Health and Social Determinants Among Boys and Girls in Sweden: Focusing on Parental Background2012Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The majority of Swedish boys and girls have good psychosomatic health. Despite that the risk of mental health problems such as nervousness, feeling low and sleeping difficulties has increased steadily in recent decades. Moreover, previous surveys on health and well-being indicate that boys and girls of foreign extraction in Sweden are at increased risk of ill health compared to boys and girls of Swedish background.

     

    The main aim of this thesis was to analyse health and social determinants among boys and girls of foreign extraction in Sweden. The factors explored in papers I–IV include parental background, family affluence and gender and their associations with subjective health complaints, psychosomatic problems or health risk behaviours. Other included risk factors for ill health were involvement in bullying, low participation and discrimination at school. This thesis takes an intersectional perspective, with ambitions to be able to emphasize the interplay between different power relations (i.e. gender, social class and parental background).

     

    Two sets of cross-sectional data were used. Three papers were based on the Swedish part of the World Health Organization’s Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children. The sample consisted of 11,972 children (boys n = 6054; girls n = 5918) in grades five, seven and nine from the measurement years 1997/98, 2001/02 and 2005/06. The response rate varied between 85 and 90%. About one fifth of the included children were of foreign extraction. For the fourth paper regional data from Northern Sweden were used. Boys (n = 729) and girls (n = 798) in grades six to nine answered a questionnaire in 2011 and the response rate was 80%. About 14% of the included children were of foreign extraction. Statistical methods used were chi-square test, correlation analyses, logistic regression analyses, cluster analyses and test of mediating factor.

     

    The results showed that girls of foreign background were at increased risk of subjective health complaints (SHC) and boys of mixed background were at increased risk of psychosomatic problems (PSP). Increased risk of allocation to the cluster profile of multiple risk behaviour was shown in boys and girls of mixed background, in girls of foreign background and in girls of low family affluence. Increased risk of allocation to the cluster profile of inadequate tooth brushing was shown in boys and girls of foreign background and in girls of low family affluence. General risk factors for increased risk of ill health for boys and girls in Sweden were: any form of bullying involvement, low family affluence, low participation and discrimination at school, of which the latter also was a mediating factor for ill health. Living with a single parent was a risk factor for ill health among girls.

     

    The results can function as a basis for developing health promotion programmes at schools that focus on social consequences of foreign extraction, family affluence, participation as well as health risk behaviours and gender.

  • 41.
    Carlsson, Fredrik
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
    Wood Fungi and Forest Fire2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Forest fires have been the major stand-replacing/modifying disturbance in boreal forests. To adapt to fire disturbance, different strategies have evolved. This thesis focuses on wood fungi, and the effect of forest fire on this organism group. In many ways it is a study on adaptation to forest fire, in concurrence with adaptation to dry open habitats. In Paper I we study increased heat resistance in  mycelia from species prevalent in fire prone environments. Fungi were cultivated on fresh wood and exposed to different temperatures. Species prevalent in fire affected habitats had a much higher survival rate over all combinations of time and temperature compared to species associated with other environments. Based on this results the competitiveness was tested after temperature stress (paper II), three fire associated species, were tested against three non fire associated species. All fire associated species had a clear advantage after heat treatment, conquering a larger volume of wood than its competitor. In paper III we studied the effect of heat shock on decomposition rate, 18 species was tested. Species were cultivated and monitored for CO2 accumulation for 8 weeks and then heat shocked. All species including non fire associated species seemed to up-regulate decomposition after heat shock, this response was more pronounced in fire associated species. To look at the possible effect of forest fire on population structure (Paper IV), we developed 29 SNP/INDELs for Phlebiopsis. gigantea. We amplified the marker containing fragments in 132 individuals of P. gigantea in 6 populations, 3 which were found in areas affected by forest fire and 3 in unaffected areas. We found no genetic structure in accordance to forest fire. However we detected geographic structure, which stands in contrast to earlier studies. This might be due to the method, using SNP´s and number of individuals in the study. Finally we collected cross-sections of decayed logs to evaluate the number of fungal species domains that are likely to be hit when drilling a saw-dust sample in a log. We used these estimates to simulate how many species that will be found by a certain number of samples. We found that in 99% of the

  • 42.
    Carlsund, Åsa
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Nursing Sciences.
    Children`s Mental Health -with focus on family arrangements2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The main aim of this thesis was to study children’s mental health with focus on family arrangements. The thesis was based on four studies (I-IV). Study number I, III and IV were quantitative studies with cross sectional design, using the Swedish version of Health behaviour in School- aged children (HBSC), including children aged 11, 13 and 15 years. The data was analysed with multiple linear regression analysis (I) and multivariate logistic regression analysis (III, IV). Study II was of qualitative descriptive design, based on 28 interviews with parents living in shared physical custody with their children. The qualitative study was analysed with inductive latent content analysis.

    Study I showed that lower levels of SHC and higher levels of SWB were associated with higher degrees of social capital in the family, school and neighbourhood. Social capital in family, school and neighbourhood had a cumulative influence on children’s SHC and SWB. In study II the participating parents described their own as well as the perceptions of their children and former partners. Parents’ perceptions changed from the beginning of shared physical custody, through the current situation, ending with perception of the future. The fifteen year old boys and girls (III) living in shared physical custody were more at risk of being a smoker or having been drunk compared with children living in two parent families. The results of sex <15 years and conduct problems showed that the risks didn’t differ significantly between these two groups. Study IV showed that children living in shared physical custody with their parents were more likely than children in two parent families to report multiple SHC, and low SWB. The variable of communication did not moderate the SHC and SWB of the children in any of these two groups.

    This thesis contribute with new and deeper understanding of the relatively new phenomenon: shared physical custody, and its associations to children’s mental health. The parent’s perceptions were an important complement to the children’s self reported health. In order to influence the decreasing mental health among children and adolescents, their opinions contributes to further understanding. Narratives from children, parents and practitioners are required in order to further study the association between children’s health outcomes and different family arrangements. Additional studies are needed to clarify how children’s mental health and different family arrangements are related to school, community economy, and society.

  • 43.
    Carnerud, Daniel
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Quality Management and Mechanical Engineering.
    Text Mining The Quality Paradigm(s)2019Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this thesis orbits around an examination of the formation of a quality paradigm. In this inquiry, the exploration and application of text mining have been used to provide new insights into quality as a paradigm.

    The findings reveal the existence of unifying topics, around which research on quality has clustered, constituting the foundational pillars of an academic quality paradigm. These foundational pillars are operational paradigms that embody both epistemological perspectives and operational concerns regarding quality. The three operative paradigms upon which the quality paradigm rests are the operative paradigm of back-end quality (orbiting around: QM, TQM and service quality), the operative paradigm of middle-way quality (orbiting around: ISO, BEMs and Quality Awards) and the operative paradigm of front-end quality (orbiting around: Reliability, Costs and Processes). The three operative paradigms differ in their levels of abstraction, accountability and system-learning emphasis. However, the mutual purpose and aim of the three operative paradigms, and hence the paradigm as a whole, is to continuously control, assure and develop systems affecting quality initiatives in service of the customer(s).

    The findings also indicate that the operative paradigms of back-end and front-end quality seem to be specializing and drifting apart, which might lead to a division of the quality paradigm into two separate paradigms.

    The studies in this thesis also confirm the existence of changes in the focus and popularity of specific topics. However, the key epistemological findings are the central and perpetual research topics that are identified – supporting the supposition that research on quality truly constitutes a delimited and recognized research paradigm.

    Furthermore, the studies show that research on quality expanded during the end of the 1980s and beginning of the 1990s, after which a contraction took place, followed by stability at the start of the 21st century. Consequently, it is found that research on quality entered a stable and mature phase in the 21st century, settling down as a distinctive and established research paradigm.

    Finally, it is found that the exploration and application of text mining is a potent approach when probing the epistemological foundations of an academic discipline.

  • 44.
    Champoux-Larsson, Marie-France
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Perceiving emotions with a bilingual mind2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 45.
    Chekalina, Tatiana
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Tourism Studies and Geography.
    A Value Co-Creation Perspective on Customer-Based Brand Equity Modelling for Tourism Destinations: A case from Sweden2015Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Tourism destinations all over the world increasingly embrace marketing and branding practices traditionally utilized by businesses. However, the literature on customer-based brand equity modelling and measurement for tourism destinations lacks the conceptual understanding of the complex relationships between tourists and the destination brand.

    Therefore, the thesis at hand addresses the existing gap in tourism literature and aims at contributing to the development of the customer-based brand equity concept in a tourism destination setting (CBDBE) by taking into account the value-co-creation approach. The components of the proposed model consist of the customers’ evaluation of the destination promise in terms of transforming functional, intangible and social destination resources into tourists’ value-in-use. Furthermore, the positive relationship between visitors’ perception of the destination and value-for-money discloses the input of tourists’ own resources into the process of value-co-creation. Moreover, destination brand awareness affects the evaluation of the destination promise, which, in turn, determines tourists’ behavioural intentions towards the destination.

    By implementing web-based customer surveys and using a linear structural equation modelling approach, the proposed model is empirically validated for the leading Swedish mountain destination Åre. First, the model is repeatedly tested with data regarding the winter seasons 2009/10 and 2012/13.  Second, the proposed CBDBE model has been operationalized and tested also for the summer season. Findings from face-to-face interviews conducted in Åre during summer 2012 uncovered the relationships between destination resources offered in Åre, tourists’ own resources and destination value-in-use and, thus, served as the empirical fundament for the development of a destination-specific scale to measure value-in-use. Subsequently, the proposed CBDBE model has been successfully tested with web-based survey data collected after the summer season 2012, both for the total sample and separately for the main a priori tourist segments, including hiking, mountain biking and village tourists.

    Results show the significant contribution of destination value-in-use defined as perceived benefits from a destination stay, which, in turn, strongly affect customers’ destination loyalty. In contrast, the relationship between value-for-money and destination loyalty is less strong and even non-significant for the two customer segments hiking and mountain biking tourists. Importantly, as part of the CBDBE model operationalization, the thesis highlights the need to better understand destination-specific consumption patterns across various tourism segments by destination managers.

    Therefore, results demonstrate that by monitoring unique destination and tourist-specific experience dimensions, destination management can influence and better manage both the value-in-use for customers and customer loyalty. Thus, the proposed CBDBE model provides destination managers with a tool, which enables evaluation and upgrade of destination marketing strategy and, finally, assist in discovering promising innovation potentials for highly experiential tourism products.

  • 46.
    Cheng, Peng
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Applications of embedded sensors in loader crane positioning and rotor RPM measurement2011Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this thesis, two novel applications involving embedded sensors arestudied, one dealing with loader crane positioning and the other involving rotorRevolutions Per Minute (RPM) measurement. The thesis presents a generalintroduction to the embedded sensor, its architecture and its use in mechanicalindustry, and provides the reader with an overview of conventional sensortechnologies within the fields of angle sensors and angular speed sensors, coveringtheir working principles, features, advantages and disadvantages and typicalapplications. The particular problems associated with the use of conventionalsensors in both loader crane positioning and rotor RPM measurement aredescribed and these problems provided the motivation for the designs of theembedded sensor systems developed in this thesis.In the case of the loader crane positioning, the origins of the project and thespecial requirements of the application are described in detail. In addition, apreliminary study is conducted in relation to the idea of a contactless joint angularsensor using MEMS inertial sensors in which four different methods, namely, theCommon-Mode-Rejection with Gyro Integration (CMRGI), Common-Mode-Rejection (CMR), Common-Mode-Rejection with Gyro Differentiation (CMRGD)and Distributed Common-Mode-Rejection (DCMR), are conceived, modeled andtested on a custom-designed prototype experimental setup. The results gatheredfrom these four methods are compared and analyzed in order to identify thedifferences in their performances. The methods, which proved to be suitable, arethen further tested using the prototype sensor setup on a loader crane and theperformance results are analyzed in order to make a decision in relation to the twomost suitable methods for the application of the loader crane positioning. Theresults suggested that the two most suitable were the CMRGD and the DCMR. Thepractical design issues relating to this sensor system are highlighted andsuggestions are made in the study. Additionally, possible future work for thisproject is also covered.In the first case for the rotor RPM measurement, the thesis presents themodeling and simulation of the stator-free RPM sensor idea using the Monte Carlomethod, which demonstrated the special features and performance of this sensor.The design aspects of the prototype sensor are described in detail and theprototype is tested on an experimental setup. The conclusions for the stator-freeRPM sensor are then made from the analysis of the experimental results and futurework in relation to this sensor is also proposed.In the second case of the rotor RPM measurement, the thesis presentsanother idea involving the laser mouse RPM sensor and the main focus of thestudy is on the performance characterization of the laser mouse sensor and theverification of the RPM sensor idea. Experiments are conducted using the test setup and results are gathered and analyzed and conclusions are drawn.Possibilities in relation to future work for this laser mouse RPM sensor are alsoprovided.The summary and the conclusion form the final chapter of the thesis andseveral important aspects of the designs relating to both the loader cranepositioning project and the rotor RPM measurement project are discussed.

  • 47.
    Cronskär, Marie
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Quality Technology and Management, Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics.
    On customization of orthopedic implants - from design and additive manufacturing to implementation2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This doctoral thesis is devoted to studying the possibilities of using additive manufacturing (AM) and design based on computed tomography (CT), for the production of patient-specific implants within orthopedic surgery, initially in a broad perspective and, in the second part of the thesis focusing on customized clavicle osteosynthesis plates. The main AM method used in the studies is the Electron Beam Melting (EBM) technology. Using AM, the parts are built up directly from 3D computer models, by melting or in other ways joining thin layers of material, layer by layer, to build up the part. Over the last 20 years, this fundamentally new way of manufacturing and the rapid development of software for digital 3D reconstruction of anatomical models from medical imaging, have opened up entirely new opportunities for the design and manufacturing of patient-specific implants. Based on the information in a computed tomography (CT) scan, both digital and physical models of the anatomy can be created and of implants that are customized based on the anatomical models.

     

    The main method used is a number of case studies performed, focusing on different parts of the production chain, from CT-scan to final implant, and with several aims: learning about the details of the different steps in the procedure, finding suitable applications, developing the method and trying it out. The first study was on customized hip stems, focusing on the EBM method and its special preconditions and possibilities. It was followed by a study of bone plates, designed to follow the patient-specific bone contour, in this case a tibia fracture including the whole production chain. Further, four cases of patient-specific plates for clavicle fracture fixation were performed in order to develop and evaluate the method. The plates fit towards the patient’s bone were tested in cooperation with an orthopedic surgeon at Östersund hospital. In parallel with the case studies, a method for finite element (FE) analysis of fixation plates placed on a clavicle bone was developed and used for the comparative strength analysis of different plates and plating methods. The loading on the clavicle bone in the FE model was defined on a muscle and ligament level using multibody musculoskeletal simulation for more realistic loading than in earlier similar studies. 

     

    The initial studies (papers I and II) showed that the EBM method has great potential, both for the application of customized hip stems and bone plates; in certain conditions EBM manufacturing can contribute to significant cost reductions compared to conventional manufacturing methods due to material savings and savings in file preparation time. However, further work was needed in both of the application areas before implementation. The studies on the fracture fixation using patient-specific clavicle plates indicated that the method can facilitate the work for the surgeon both in the planning and in the operating room, with the potential of a smoother plate with a better fit and screw positioning tailored to the specific fracture (paper VI). However, a large clinical trial is required to investigate the clinical benefit of using patient-specific plates. The FE simulations showed similar stress distributions and displacements in the patient-specific plates and the commercial plates (papers III to VI).

     

    To summarize: the results of this thesis contribute to the area of digital design and AM in patient-specific implants with broad basis of knowledge regarding the technologies used and areas in which further work is needed for the implementation of the technology on a larger scale. Further, a method has been developed and initially evaluated for implementation in the area of clavicle fracture fixation, including an approach for comparing the strength of different clavicle plates.

  • 48.
    Cvetković, Anita
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    Kulturmöte i gränslandet mellan motsättningar och möjligheter: Strategier för att tillvarata kulturmötens kreativa potential2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
    Abstract [en]

     Encounters  and  relations  between  people  with  different  cultural  backgrounds  tend  to  be  primarily  discussed  in  terms  of  exclusio,  prejudice  and  conflict.  This  thesis  focuses  on  the  creative  aspects  of  intercultural  encounters.  The  starting  point  is  that  the  parties  involved  sometimes  succeed  in  avoiding  the  latent  conflicts  between  cultures  by  acting  trategically.  The  aim  of  this  thesis  is  to  increase  understanding  of  the  possibilities  represented  by  intercultural  encounters  and  to  identiy  the  strategies  employed  by  the  actors  who  try  to  deal  with  the  contrasts  and  dilemmas  involved  in  encounters  with  other  peopl  with  different  cultural  experiences,  identities  and  methods.  The  empirical  part  of  the  thesis  is  based  on  four  qualitative  case  studies  that  are  characterised  by  rather  positive  co‐operation  between  the  actors  in  the  intercultural  encounter,  i.e.  "immigrants"  and  the  majority  society  in  Sweden.  The  empirical  data  are  based  on  45  individual  interviews,  two  focus  group  discussions  and  a  number  of  minor  observations  made  in  the  inland  part  of  northern  Sweden,  where  the  case  studies  were  carried  out.  The  principal  result  of  this  research  is  that  the  actors  begin  to  see  culture  as  a  possibility  when  they  find  themselves  in  a  osition  where  they  feel  obliged  to  change  their  established  patterns  of  behaviour,  due  to  some  sort  of  crisis  situation.  The  strategies  used  by  the  actors  to  deal  with  culture  conflicts  can  be  divided  into  intra‐group  strategies  and  inter‐group  strategies.  The  former  attempt  to  achieve  relative  homogeneity  between  the  competing  groups  in  the  field  of  the  intercultural  encounter,  while  the  latter  illustrate  how  the  participants  deal  with  what  they  experience  as  differences.  Four  inter‐group  strategies  have  been  identified:  1)  the  status  quo  strategy,  2)  the  loose  coupling  strategy,  3)  the  selective  strategy  and  4)  a  culture  mixing  strategy.  The  latter  three  are  characterised  by  innovative  combinations  that  organise  the  existing  cultural  elements  in  a  meaningful  way  These  strategies  result  in  new  cognitive  structures,  whose  limits  maintain  the  balance  between  different  cultural  elements.

      

  • 49.
    Daghighi, Abtin
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Science Education and Mathematics.
    Regularity and uniqueness-related properties of solutions with respect to locally integrable structures2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    We prove that a smooth generic embedded CR submanifold of C^n obeys the maximum principle for continuous CR functions if and only if it is weakly 1-concave. The proof of the maximum principle in the original manuscript has later been generalized to embedded weakly q-concave CR submanifolds of certain complex manifolds. We give a generalization of a known result regarding automatic smoothness of solutions to the homogeneous problem for the tangential CR vector fields given local holomorphic extension. This generalization ensures that a given locally integrable structure is hypocomplex at the origin if and only if it does not allow solutions near the origin which cannot be represented by a smooth function near the origin. We give a sufficient condition under which it holds true that if a smooth CR function f on a smooth generic embedded CR submanifold, M, of C^n, vanishes to infinite order along a C^infty-smooth curve  \gamma in M, then f vanishes on an M-neighborhood of \gamma. We prove a local maximum principle for certain locally integrable structures.

  • 50.
    Dahlström, Christina
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of applied science and design.
    Quantitative microscopy of coating uniformity2012Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Print quality demands for coated papers are steadily growing, and achieving coating uniformity is crucial for high image sharpness, colour fidelity, and print uniformity. Coating uniformity may be divided into two scales: coating thickness uniformity and coating microstructure uniformity, the latter of which includes pigment, pore and binder distributions within the coating layer. This thesis concerns the investigation of both types of coating uniformity by using an approach of quantitative microscopy.First, coating thickness uniformity was analysed by using scanning electron microscope (SEM) images of paper cross sections, and the relationships between local coating thickness variations and the variations of underlying base sheet structures were determined. Special attention was given to the effect of length scales on the coating thickness vs. base sheet structure relationships.The experimental results showed that coating thickness had a strong correlation with surface height (profile) of base sheet at a small length scale. However, at a large length scale, it was mass density of base sheet (formation) that had the strongest correlation with coating thickness. This result explains well the discrepancies found in the literature for the relationship between coating thickness variation and base sheet structure variations. The total variance of coating thickness, however, was dominated by the surface height variation in the small scale, which explained around 50% of the variation. Autocorrelation analyses were further performed for the same data set. The autocorrelation functions showed a close resemblance of the one for a random shot process with a correlation length in the order of fibre width. All these results suggest that coating thickness variations are the result of random deposition of particles with the correlation length determined by the base sheet surface textures, such as fibre width.In order to obtain fundamental understandings of the random deposition processes on a rough surface, such as in paper, a generic particle deposition model was developed, and systematic analyses were performed for the effects of particle size, coat weight (average number of particles), levelling, and system size on coating thickness variation. The results showed that coating thickness variation3grows with coat weight, but beyond a certain coat weight, it reaches a plateau value. A scaling analysis yielded a universal relationship between coating thickness variation and the above mentioned variables. The correlation length of coating thickness was found to be determined by average coat weight and the state of underlying surfaces. For a rough surface at relatively low coat weight, the correlation length was typically in the range of fibre width, as was also observed experimentally.Non-uniformities within the coating layer, such as porosity variations and binder distributions, are investigated by using a newly developed method: field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) in combination with argon ion beam milling technique. The combination of these two techniques produced extremely high quality images with very few artefacts, which are particularly suited for quantitative analyses of coating structures. A new evaluation method was also developed by using marker-controlled watershed segmentation (MCWS) of the secondary electron images (SEI).The high resolution imaging revealed that binder enrichment, a long disputed subject in the area, is present in a thin layer of a 500 nm thickness both at the coating surface and at the base sheet/coating interface. It was also found that the binders almost exclusively fill up the small pores, whereas the larger pores are mainly empty or depleted of binder.

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