Next Issue
Previous Issue

E-Mail Alert

Add your e-mail address to receive forthcoming issues of this journal:

Journal Browser

Journal Browser

Table of Contents

Sustainability, Volume 10, Issue 4 (April 2018)

  • Issues are regarded as officially published after their release is announced to the table of contents alert mailing list.
  • You may sign up for e-mail alerts to receive table of contents of newly released issues.
  • PDF is the official format for papers published in both, html and pdf forms. To view the papers in pdf format, click on the "PDF Full-text" link, and use the free Adobe Readerexternal link to open them.
Cover Story (view full-size image) Deep within the western Himalayas, farmers are adapting to rapid changes in their environment. [...] Read more.
View options order results:
result details:
Displaying articles 1-408
Export citation of selected articles as:
Open AccessArticle The Effects of Diversification Activities on the Technical Efficiency of Organic Farms in Switzerland, Austria, and Southern Germany
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1304; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041304
Received: 5 March 2018 / Revised: 13 April 2018 / Accepted: 16 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (784 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The diversification of farms can be a result of multifunctional farming, however, in some cases at the cost of lower farm efficiency. In our paper we investigate the influence of para-agricultural diversification on productivity and the technical efficiency of organic farms in Austria,
[...] Read more.
The diversification of farms can be a result of multifunctional farming, however, in some cases at the cost of lower farm efficiency. In our paper we investigate the influence of para-agricultural diversification on productivity and the technical efficiency of organic farms in Austria, Switzerland, and Southern Germany. We show the benefits and drawbacks of diversification for organic farms, which go beyond the core agricultural production (para-agriculture). We do this by estimating a Stochastic Frontier (SF) combined with a metafrontier model. The data-set consists of bookkeeping data with 1704 observations in the years 2003 to 2005. Para-agricultural diversification activities have a significant effect on both productivity and technical efficiency of organic farms: The farm output in Austria and Switzerland is positively influenced by diversification, whereas we observe a rather small effect in Southern Germany. On the other hand, diversification can reduce farms’ technical efficiency, as it is the case in Switzerland and Germany. Furthermore, our study confirms previous results that agricultural subsidies significantly influence the technical efficiency of organic farms. We also show expected changes of input use driven by increased farm diversification. Full article
Figures

Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle Simplicity and Sustainability: Pointers from Ethics and Science
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1303; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041303
Received: 14 December 2017 / Revised: 6 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
PDF Full-text (518 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this paper, we explore the notion of simplicity. We use definitions of simplicity proposed by philosophers, scientists, and economists. In an age when the rapidly growing human population faces an equally rapidly declining energy/material resources, there is an urgent need to consider
[...] Read more.
In this paper, we explore the notion of simplicity. We use definitions of simplicity proposed by philosophers, scientists, and economists. In an age when the rapidly growing human population faces an equally rapidly declining energy/material resources, there is an urgent need to consider various notions of simplicity, collective and individual, which we believe to be a sensible path to restore our planet to a reasonable state of health. Following the logic of mathematicians and physicists, we suggest that simplicity can be related to sustainability. Our efforts must therefore not be spent so much in pursuit of growth but in achieving a sustainable life. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Hybrid Electric Vehicles: Some Theoretical Considerations on Consumption Behaviour
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1302; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041302
Received: 10 March 2018 / Revised: 17 April 2018 / Accepted: 18 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (508 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Solving the problem of the lack of environmental sustainability in transport activities requires the involvement of new technologies, particularly in populated cities where mobility activities play a major role in generating externalities. The move from cars powered by conventional internal combustion engines to
[...] Read more.
Solving the problem of the lack of environmental sustainability in transport activities requires the involvement of new technologies, particularly in populated cities where mobility activities play a major role in generating externalities. The move from cars powered by conventional internal combustion engines to cars powered by alternative energies can make an important contribution to reducing emissions and achieving a more sustainable transport system. Unfortunately, green car market development still remains uncertain because of the higher production costs of batteries and engines. In this context, surprisingly little attention has been devoted to analysing the economic factors affecting consumers’ behaviour in the choice of hybrid electric vehicles. To fill this gap, the diffusion process of hybrid technology as well as intrinsic and extrinsic motivations and the crowding-out effect on consumers’ purchasing decisions are taken under consideration. Finally, some policy recommendations are provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Results from On-The-Ground Efforts to Promote Sustainable Cattle Ranching in the Brazilian Amazon
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1301; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041301
Received: 12 March 2018 / Revised: 14 April 2018 / Accepted: 16 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (5181 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Agriculture in Brazil is booming. Brazil has the world’s second largest cattle herd and is the second largest producer of soybeans, with the production of beef, soybeans, and bioethanol forecast to increase further. Questions remain, however, about how Brazil can reconcile increases in
[...] Read more.
Agriculture in Brazil is booming. Brazil has the world’s second largest cattle herd and is the second largest producer of soybeans, with the production of beef, soybeans, and bioethanol forecast to increase further. Questions remain, however, about how Brazil can reconcile increases in agricultural production with protection of its remaining natural vegetation. While high hopes have been placed on the potential for intensification of low-productivity cattle ranching to spare land for other agricultural uses, cattle productivity in the Amazon biome (29% of the Brazilian cattle herd) remains stubbornly low, and it is not clear how to realize theoretical productivity gains in practice. We provide results from six initiatives in the Brazilian Amazon, which are successfully improving cattle productivity in beef and dairy production on more than 500,000 hectares of pastureland, while supporting compliance with the Brazilian Forest Code. Spread across diverse geographies, and using a wide range of technologies, participating farms have improved productivity by 30–490%. High-productivity cattle ranching requires some initial investment (R$1300–6900/ha or US$410–2180/ha), with average pay-back times of 2.5–8.5 years. We conclude by reflecting on the challenges that must be overcome to scale up these young initiatives, avoid rebound increases in deforestation, and mainstream sustainable cattle ranching in the Amazon. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmentally Sustainable Livestock Production)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessReview What Is Going on with Stakeholder Theory in Project Management Literature? A Symbiotic Relationship for Sustainability
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1300; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041300
Received: 31 March 2018 / Revised: 19 April 2018 / Accepted: 22 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
PDF Full-text (1840 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Nowadays the advance towards sustainability poses a global challenge for modern society as well as for companies. Professionals and academics continually redefine business processes and design management mechanisms in a more appropriate way in order to allow companies to balance economic activity with
[...] Read more.
Nowadays the advance towards sustainability poses a global challenge for modern society as well as for companies. Professionals and academics continually redefine business processes and design management mechanisms in a more appropriate way in order to allow companies to balance economic activity with the environmental and social impact that they generate. Under this complex and dynamic scenario, creating a product, providing a service, or achieving a given result requires a different interpretation of the efficiency paradigm and an adequate socio-environmental intelligence. In the context of project management, sustainability-related knowledge, skills, and suitable tools are necessary to face this challenge. Moreover, its close relationship with stakeholder theory presents an alternative to approach that purpose. This article attempts a systematic review of the literature on stakeholder theory in project management during the past nine years, with the aim of providing a comprehensive view of this relationship, revealing its impact and influence on sustainability, and finding new research paths. We highlight the potential benefits derived from this relationship, either as an instrument for the promotion of corporate social responsibility and inclusive policies, as a means for the generation of shared value and technological innovation, or as a key factor in the strategy and business management of a given project. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Project Management and Sustainable Development)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Simulating Spatial-Temporal Changes of Land-Use Based on Ecological Redline Restrictions and Landscape Driving Factors: A Case Study in Beijing
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1299; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041299
Received: 18 March 2018 / Revised: 19 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (2916 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A change in the usage of land is influenced by a variety of driving factors and policies on spatial constraints. On the basis of considering the conventional natural and socio-economic indicators, the landscape pattern indicators were considered as new driving forces in the
[...] Read more.
A change in the usage of land is influenced by a variety of driving factors and policies on spatial constraints. On the basis of considering the conventional natural and socio-economic indicators, the landscape pattern indicators were considered as new driving forces in the conversion of land use and its effects at small regional extent (CLUE-S) model to simulate spatial and temporal changes of land-use in Beijing. Compared with traditional spatial restrictions characterized by small and isolated areas, such as forest parks and natural reserves, the ecological redline areas increase the spatial integrity and connectivity of ecological and environmental functions at a regional scale, which were used to analyze the distribution patterns and behaviors of land use conversion in the CLUE-S model. The observed results indicate that each simulation scenario has a Kappa coefficient of more than 0.76 beyond the threshold value of 0.6 and represents high agreements between the actual and simulated land use maps. The simulation scenarios including landscape pattern indicators are more accurate than those without consideration of these new driving forces. The simulation results from using ecological redline areas as space constraints have the highest precision compared with the unrestricted and traditionally restricted scenarios. Therefore, the CLUE-S model based on the restriction of ecological redline and the consideration of landscape pattern factors has shown better effectiveness in simulating the future land use change. The conversion of land use types mainly occurred between construction land and cropland during the period from 2010 to 2020. Meanwhile, a large number of grasslands are being changed to construction lands in the mountain towns of northwest Beijing and large quantities of water bodies have disappeared and been replaced by construction lands due to rapid urbanization in the eastern and southern plains. To improve the sustainable use of land resources, it is necessary to adopt the construction and development mode of satellite towns rather than encouraging a disorderly expansion of downtown areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Land Uses and Rural Governance)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Walled Buildings, Sustainability, and Housing Prices: An Artificial Neural Network Approach
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1298; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041298
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 6 April 2018 / Accepted: 17 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (307 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Various researchers have explored the adverse effects of walled buildings on human health. However, few of them have examined the relationship between walled buildings and private housing estates in Hong Kong. This study endeavors to fill the research gap by exploring the connections
[...] Read more.
Various researchers have explored the adverse effects of walled buildings on human health. However, few of them have examined the relationship between walled buildings and private housing estates in Hong Kong. This study endeavors to fill the research gap by exploring the connections among walled-building effects, housing features, macroeconomic factors, and housing prices in private housing estates. Specifically, it reveals the relationship between walled buildings and housing prices. Eight privately owned housing estates are selected with a total of 11,365 observations. Results are analyzed to study the factors that affect the housing price. Firstly, unit root tests are carried out to evaluate if the time series variables follow the unit root process. Secondly, the relationship between walled buildings and housing price is examined by conducting an artificial neural network. We assumed that the housing price reduces due to walled-building effects, given that previous literature showed that heat island effect, and blockage of natural light and views, are common in walled-building districts. Moreover, we assume that housing price can also be affected by macroeconomic factors and housing features, and these effects vary among private housing estates. We also study these impacts by using the two models. Recommendations and possible solutions are suggested at the end of the research paper. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Sustainable Built Environment)
Open AccessArticle Financing Target and Resale Pricing in Reward-Based Crowdfunding
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1297; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041297
Received: 4 March 2018 / Revised: 8 April 2018 / Accepted: 10 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1617 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Resale is an effective tool for reward-based crowdfunding creators to make more profit after crowdfunding successfully. On the one hand, funds raised during the crowdfunding affect the resale pricing as a capital constraint; on the other hand, backers’ strategic purchasing behavior in the
[...] Read more.
Resale is an effective tool for reward-based crowdfunding creators to make more profit after crowdfunding successfully. On the one hand, funds raised during the crowdfunding affect the resale pricing as a capital constraint; on the other hand, backers’ strategic purchasing behavior in the resale stage can also disturb the creator’s financing target decision-making through affecting resale pricing. In view of this, this paper builds a two-stage crowdfunding model to examine the interaction between the financing target and resale pricing in the presence of strategic backers. The results show that a lower financing amount leads to higher prices in the resale stage due to the rationing effect, and suppresses price volatility due to strategic purchasing behavior. In contrast, a higher financing amount enables the creator to build a large capacity, which does not restrict the resale prices and profit. Besides, in the context of high unit production cost or high backer patience level, there is no need for the creator to set a high financing target at the risk of crowdfunding failure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Internet Finance, Green Finance and Sustainability)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Constructing Differentiated Educational Materials Using Semantic Annotation for Sustainable Education in IoT Environments
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1296; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041296
Received: 21 March 2018 / Revised: 13 April 2018 / Accepted: 16 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (4278 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Recently, Internet of Things (IoT) technology has become a hot trend and is used in a wide variety of fields. For instance, in education, this technology contributes to improving learning efficiency in the class by enabling learners to interact with physical devices and
[...] Read more.
Recently, Internet of Things (IoT) technology has become a hot trend and is used in a wide variety of fields. For instance, in education, this technology contributes to improving learning efficiency in the class by enabling learners to interact with physical devices and providing appropriate learning content based on this interaction. Such interaction data can be collected through the physical devices to define personal data. In the meanwhile, multimedia contents in this environment usually have a wide variety of formats and standards, making it difficult for computers to understand their meaning and reuse them. This could be a serious obstacle to the effective use or sustainable management of educational contents in IoT-based educational systems. In order to solve this problem, in this paper, we propose a semantic annotation scheme for sustainable computing in the IoT environment. More specifically, we first show how to collect appropriate multimedia contents and interaction data. Next, we calculate the readability of learning materials and define the user readability level to provide appropriate contents to the learners. Finally, we describe our semantic annotation scheme and show how to annotate collected data using our scheme. We implement a prototype system and show that our scheme can achieve efficient management of various learning materials in the IoT-based educational system. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle A Sustainable Closed-Loop Supply Chain Decision Mechanism in the Electronic Sector
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1295; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041295
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 16 April 2018 / Accepted: 17 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (608 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In a closed-loop supply chain for electronic products, the manufacturer’s priority is to enhance the residual value of the collected end-of-use product and decide whether to outsource this business to a retailer, a third-party service, or retain it exclusively. In this paper, we
[...] Read more.
In a closed-loop supply chain for electronic products, the manufacturer’s priority is to enhance the residual value of the collected end-of-use product and decide whether to outsource this business to a retailer, a third-party service, or retain it exclusively. In this paper, we constructed three models to study the decision mechanism in a closed-loop supply chain, with different players selected to collect the used product. By comparing the three models, we characterized the conditions under which the manufacturer will benefit most, and we then aimed to determine the best choice for the manufacturer. Our findings show that, when the retailer and the third-party service provider provide equal performance in collecting the used product, the manufacturer will give priority to the third-party service provider if they choose to outsource this business. If the reverse flows managed by the retailer result in a higher payoff for the manufacturer, then the manufacturer will choose to outsource this business to the retailer who will also benefit. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Assessment of Government Incentives for Energy from Waste in Colombia
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1294; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041294
Received: 25 February 2018 / Revised: 13 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1249 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This work evaluates the prefeasibility of energy from waste projects in Colombia under the guidelines of Law 1715. That piece of legislation proposes tax incentives for non-conventional energy initiatives, such as deductions of up to 50% on the investment through income tax, VAT
[...] Read more.
This work evaluates the prefeasibility of energy from waste projects in Colombia under the guidelines of Law 1715. That piece of legislation proposes tax incentives for non-conventional energy initiatives, such as deductions of up to 50% on the investment through income tax, VAT exemption, tariff exemption, and accelerated depreciation of assets. Pasto, Colombia, was selected as the case study. Subsequently, incineration, gasification, anaerobic digestion, and landfill gas technologies were evaluated. The potential of electric power generation from municipal solid waste (MSW) of each conversion technology was estimated with mathematical models. Additionally, the economic evaluation considered five cases that combine loan options, accelerated depreciation, and income deductions. Finally, the prefeasibility analysis of each case and technology was based on the internal rate of return (IRR) and levelized cost of electricity (LCOE). The results reveal that only anaerobic digestion and landfill gas technologies constitute viable projects in case of traditional investment with and without loans, because they present IRRs greater than the discount rate, of 6.8%. However, by including the incentives in Law 1715 in the economic evaluation, IRRs of 11.18%, 7.96%, 14.27%, and 13.59% were obtained for incineration, gasification, anaerobic digestion, and landfill gas, respectively. These results make all four technologies feasible in this context. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Simulating and Predicting the Impacts of Light Rail Transit Systems on Urban Land Use by Using Cellular Automata: A Case Study of Dongguan, China
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1293; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041293
Received: 24 March 2018 / Revised: 20 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2865 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The emergence of Light Rail Transit systems (LRTs) could exert considerable impacts on sustainable urban development. It is crucial to predict the potential land use changes since LRTs are being increasingly built throughout the world. While various land use and land cover change
[...] Read more.
The emergence of Light Rail Transit systems (LRTs) could exert considerable impacts on sustainable urban development. It is crucial to predict the potential land use changes since LRTs are being increasingly built throughout the world. While various land use and land cover change (LUCC) models have been developed during the past two decades, the basic assumption for LUCC prediction is the continuation of present trends in land use development. It is therefore unreasonable to predict potential urban land use changes associated with LRTs simply based on earlier trends because the impacts of LRT investment may vary greatly over time. To tackle this challenge, our study aims to share the experiences from previous lines with newly planned lines. Dongguan, whose government decided to build LRTs around 2008, was selected as the study area. First, we assessed the impacts of this city’s first LRT (Line R2) on three urban land use types (i.e., industrial development, commercial and residential development, and rural development) at different periods. The results indicate that Line R2 exerted a negative impact on industrial development and rural development, but a positive impact on commercial and residential development during the planning stage of this line. Second, such spatial impacts (the consequent land use changes) during this stage were simulated by using artificial neural network cellular automata. More importantly, we further predicted the potential impacts of Line R1, which is assumed to be a newly planned line, based on the above calibrated model and a traditional method respectively. The comparisons between them demonstrate the effectiveness of our method, which can easily take advantage of the experiences from other LRTs. The proposed method is expected to provide technical support for sustainable urban and transportation planning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Transportation)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Measurements and Factors That Influence the Carbon Capability of Urban Residents in China
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1292; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041292
Received: 23 March 2018 / Revised: 16 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
PDF Full-text (1293 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Due to the rapid growth in residential energy consumption, there is an urgent need to reduce carbon emissions from the consumer side, which requires improvements in the carbon capability of urban residents. In this study, previous investigations of carbon capability were analyzed and
[...] Read more.
Due to the rapid growth in residential energy consumption, there is an urgent need to reduce carbon emissions from the consumer side, which requires improvements in the carbon capability of urban residents. In this study, previous investigations of carbon capability were analyzed and classified into four dimensions: carbon knowledge capability, carbon motivation capability, carbon behavior capability, and carbon management capability. According to grounded theory, a quantitative research model was constructed of the carbon capability of urban residents in Jiangsu, which was used to conduct a questionnaire survey. SPSS 19.0 and LatentGOLD were employed to process the questionnaire data and the carbon capability of the residents was evaluated. The results showed that the residents of Jiangsu Province could be divided into six groups based on their different carbon capabilities, where these six major groups accounted for 28.19%, 21.21%, 18.33%, 15.84%, 9.88%, and 6.55% of the total sample. Gender, age, occupation, and educational level had significant effects on the carbon capabilities of residents, whereas the annual household income and household population had no significant effects. According to the characteristics of each cluster based on the four carbon capability dimensions, the six clusters were designated as “balanced steady cluster”, “self-restraint cluster”, “fully backward cluster”, “comprehensive leading cluster”, “slightly cognitive cluster”, and “restrain others cluster”. Quantitative analysis showed that 61.93% of the residents of Jiangsu reached the qualified rate for the carbon capability but the excellent rate was only 15.84%. Relevant policy implications are suggested based on these conclusions. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Green Logistic Provider Selection with a Hesitant Fuzzy Linguistic Thermodynamic Method Integrating Cumulative Prospect Theory and PROMETHEE
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1291; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041291
Received: 10 March 2018 / Revised: 12 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 22 April 2018
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (311 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In the process of evaluating the green levels of cold-chain logistics providers, experts may hesitate between several linguistic terms rather than give precise values over the alternatives. Due to the potential profit and risk of business decisions, decision-making information is often based on
[...] Read more.
In the process of evaluating the green levels of cold-chain logistics providers, experts may hesitate between several linguistic terms rather than give precise values over the alternatives. Due to the potential profit and risk of business decisions, decision-making information is often based on experts’ expectations of programs and is expressed as hesitant fuzzy linguistic terms. The consistency of evaluation information of an alternative can reflect the clarity of the alternative in the mind of experts and its own controversy. This paper proposes a method to use the value transfer function in the cumulative prospect theory to convert the original hesitant fuzzy linguistic terms into evaluation information based on reference points. We also introduce the parameters related to the disorder of the system in the hesitant fuzzy thermodynamic method to describe the quantity and quality characteristics of the alternatives. In these kinds of multi-criteria decision-making problems, the weights of criteria are of great importance for decision-making results. Considering the conflicting cases among criteria, the weights were obtained by utilizing the PROMETHEE method. An illustrative example concerning green logistics provider selection was operated to show the practicability of the proposed method. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
Open AccessArticle Efficient Protection of Android Applications through User Authentication Using Peripheral Devices
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1290; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041290
Received: 22 March 2018 / Revised: 17 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 22 April 2018
PDF Full-text (11415 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Android applications store large amounts of sensitive information that may be exposed and exploited. To prevent this security risk, some applications such as Syrup and KakaoTalk use physical device values to authenticate or encrypt application data. However, by manipulating these physical device values,
[...] Read more.
Android applications store large amounts of sensitive information that may be exposed and exploited. To prevent this security risk, some applications such as Syrup and KakaoTalk use physical device values to authenticate or encrypt application data. However, by manipulating these physical device values, an attacker can circumvent the authentication by executing a Same Identifier Attack and obtain the same application privileges as the user. In our work, WhatsApp, KakaoTalk, Facebook, Amazon, and Syrup were subjected to the Same Identifier Attack, and it was found that an attacker could gain the same privileges as the user, in all five applications. To solve such a problem, we propose a technical scheme—User Authentication using Peripheral Devices. We applied the proposed scheme to a Nexus 5X smartphone running Android version 7.1 and confirmed that the average execution time was 0.005 s, which does not affect the other applications’ execution significantly. We also describe the security aspects of the proposed scheme and its compatibility with the Android platform and other applications. The proposed scheme is practical and efficient in terms of resource usage; therefore, it will be useful for Android users to improve Android application security. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Reaching Sustainable Financial Health: Gender Differences in Risk-Taking Patterns of Financially Excluded People
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1289; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041289
Received: 23 March 2018 / Revised: 12 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 22 April 2018
PDF Full-text (270 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Providing sufficient financial accessibility to low-income individuals is considered a way to decrease income inequality and could be a key factor in sustainable economic growth. To make the financial accessibility policy more effective, analyses of individuals’ understanding of financial risk within low-income groups
[...] Read more.
Providing sufficient financial accessibility to low-income individuals is considered a way to decrease income inequality and could be a key factor in sustainable economic growth. To make the financial accessibility policy more effective, analyses of individuals’ understanding of financial risk within low-income groups need to be conducted. The current authors investigated individuals’ attitudes towards loan financial risk in terms of gender difference. Using South Korean survey data, we examined the relationship between gender and attitude towards loan financial risk with a regression analysis. We found that within a low-income group, males were more willing to pay higher interest rates than females. In addition, males’ willingness to pay high interest rates became stronger when their current financial costs were high. The results indicate that males are less careful with the risks that high interest rates can bring. Thus, the results imply that interventions, such as more substantial financial education, are required for males to make financial accessibility polices more effective. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
Open AccessArticle One-Dimensional Analytical Modeling of Pressure- Retarded Osmosis in a Parallel Flow Configuration for the Desalination Industry in the State of Kuwait
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1288; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041288
Received: 19 March 2018 / Revised: 18 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 22 April 2018
PDF Full-text (2308 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The present study deals with the application of one-dimensional (1D) analytical expressions for a parallel flow configuration in pressure-retarded osmosis (PRO) exchangers by using actual brine and feed salinity values from the Kuwait desalination industry. The 1D expressions are inspired by the effectiveness-number
[...] Read more.
The present study deals with the application of one-dimensional (1D) analytical expressions for a parallel flow configuration in pressure-retarded osmosis (PRO) exchangers by using actual brine and feed salinity values from the Kuwait desalination industry. The 1D expressions are inspired by the effectiveness-number of transfer unit (ε-NTU) method used in heat exchanger analysis and has been developed to “size” an osmotically-driven membrane process (ODMP) mass exchanger given the operating conditions and desired performance. The driving potentials in these mass exchangers are the salinity differences between feed and draw solution. These 1D model equations are employed to determine mass transfer units (MTU) as a function of different dimensionless groups such as mass flowrate ratio (MR), recovery ratio (RR), concentration factors (CF) and effectiveness (ε). The introduction of new dimensionless groups such as the dilution rate ratio (DRR) and dilution rate (DR) would be used to relate the actual water permeation to the brine draw stream. The results show that a maximum power of 0.28 and 2.6 kJ can be produced by the PRO system using seawater or treated wastewater effluent (TWE) as the feed solution, respectively, which might be able to reduce the power consumption of the desalination industry in Kuwait. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Wastewater Treatment Systems)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Patent Keyword Extraction for Sustainable Technology Management
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1287; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041287
Received: 4 April 2018 / Revised: 19 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 22 April 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (575 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Recently, sustainable growth and development has become an important issue for governments and corporations. However, maintaining sustainable development is very difficult. These difficulties can be attributed to sociocultural and political backgrounds that change over time [1]. Because of these changes, the
[...] Read more.
Recently, sustainable growth and development has become an important issue for governments and corporations. However, maintaining sustainable development is very difficult. These difficulties can be attributed to sociocultural and political backgrounds that change over time [1]. Because of these changes, the technologies for sustainability also change, so governments and companies attempt to predict and manage technology using patent analyses, but it is very difficult to predict the rapidly changing technology markets. The best way to achieve insight into technology management in this rapidly changing market is to build a technology management direction and strategy that is flexible and adaptable to the volatile market environment through continuous monitoring and analysis. Quantitative patent analysis using text mining is an effective method for sustainable technology management. There have been many studies that have used text mining and word-based patent analyses to extract keywords and remove noise words. Because the extracted keywords are considered to have a significant effect on the further analysis, researchers need to carefully check out whether they are valid or not. However, most prior studies assume that the extracted keywords are appropriate, without evaluating their validity. Therefore, the criteria used to extract keywords needs to change. Until now, these criteria have focused on how well a patent can be classified according to its technical characteristics in the collected patent data set, typically using term frequency–inverse document frequency weights that are calculated by comparing the words in patents. However, this is not suitable when analyzing a single patent. Therefore, we need keyword selection criteria and an extraction method capable of representing the technical characteristics of a single patent without comparing them with other patents. In this study, we proposed a methodology to extract valid keywords from single patent documents using relevant papers and their authors’ keywords. We evaluated the validity of the proposed method and its practical performance using a statistical verification experiment. First, by comparing the document similarity between papers and patents containing the same search terms in their titles, we verified the validity of the proposed method of extracting patent keywords using authors’ keywords and the paper. We also confirmed that the proposed method improves the precision by about 17.4% over the existing method. It is expected that the outcome of this study will contribute to increasing the reliability and the validity of the research on patent analyses based on text mining and improving the quality of such studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Infrastructures as Catalysts: Precipitating Uneven Patterns of Development from Large-Scale Infrastructure Investments
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1286; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041286
Received: 13 March 2018 / Revised: 13 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 22 April 2018
PDF Full-text (284 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
While infrastructure investments in developing regions may bring about aggregate benefits, the distribution of those benefits cannot be ignored. The present paper examines such distributional effects based on two illustrations: rural roads in Ethiopia and flood control systems in Bangladesh. In both cases,
[...] Read more.
While infrastructure investments in developing regions may bring about aggregate benefits, the distribution of those benefits cannot be ignored. The present paper examines such distributional effects based on two illustrations: rural roads in Ethiopia and flood control systems in Bangladesh. In both cases, the infrastructures promote particular development patterns towards market-economic transformations and integration. We liken the introduction of these infrastructures to the addition of a catalyst in a chemical reaction. Rural roads, for example, catalyse existing flows of agricultural labour, while flood control catalyses agricultural productivity. Taking the analogy a step further, the effects of a catalyst are known to vary due to the presence of so-called inhibitors and promoters. Applying this to the two cases, the paper reveals that, among other factors, the ownership (or lack thereof) of modes of transportation in Ethiopia and land resources in Bangladesh represent significant promoters (or inhibitors) that can help to explain the unequal distribution of benefits. This question is by no means new; past technical assistance programmes were already fiercely criticized for exacerbating inequalities. Today, commercial and political interests are again intensifying infrastructural investments in developing regions with profound impacts on local economies and livelihoods. Revisiting the question of distribution is, therefore, as relevant as ever. Full article
Open AccessArticle Land Cover Based Landscape Pattern Dynamics of Anhui Province Using GlobCover and MCD12Q1 Global Land Cover Products
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1285; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041285
Received: 4 April 2018 / Revised: 19 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 22 April 2018
PDF Full-text (2314 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The development and free distribution of global land cover (GLC) products have greatly assisted in the evolution and analysis of relationships between land cover and landscape pattern. In this study, GlobCover and MCD12Q1 GLC datasets of 2005 and 2009 were comparatively used to
[...] Read more.
The development and free distribution of global land cover (GLC) products have greatly assisted in the evolution and analysis of relationships between land cover and landscape pattern. In this study, GlobCover and MCD12Q1 GLC datasets of 2005 and 2009 were comparatively used to analyze the variation of land cover in Anhui Province, China at both the class and landscape scale. The land cover classification schemes of both datasets were firstly reclassified to six types of forestland, grassland, wetland, cropland, artificial area, and others, and then FRAGSTATS was used to calculate the landscape indices. The results showed that from 2005 to 2009, the area density of ‘cropland’ landscape decreased, and it increased for ‘wetland’ and ‘artificial area’. The landscape fragmentation of ‘forestland’ and ‘grassland’ were larger. Moreover, over the same period, the class edge (CE) of ‘cropland’ was diminished; while the CE of ‘wetland’ was enhanced and the aggregation became larger. Conversely, the aggregation and shape complexity of ‘artificial area’ remained the same. The clumpiness index (CLUMPY) of ‘cropland’ varied from 0.8995 to 0.9050, indicating a higher aggregation and more concentrated distribution. The heterogeneity index (HT) value of MCD12Q1 and GlobCover datasets varied, respectively, from 0.9642 to 0.9053 and from 0.8867 to 0.8751, demonstrating that the landscape heterogeneity of Anhui Province was reduced from 2005 to 2009. Driving force analysis (DFA) was just performed for ‘artificial area’, ‘cropland’, and ‘wetland’ according to the 2005–2009 statistical yearbook data, because they were apt to be affected by human activities over a relatively short period of time. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Manufacturer’s Decision as Consumers’ Low-Carbon Preference Grows
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1284; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041284
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 31 March 2018 / Accepted: 12 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
PDF Full-text (1548 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper investigates five channel structures for manufacturers including three single channels and two dual channels. Consumers’ low-carbon preference is considered to explore how market demands and channel selections will change as it remains stable and grows. To compare performances of the five
[...] Read more.
This paper investigates five channel structures for manufacturers including three single channels and two dual channels. Consumers’ low-carbon preference is considered to explore how market demands and channel selections will change as it remains stable and grows. To compare performances of the five channel structures, we further get the critical points consisting of construction cost of a platform, revenue proportion through a third-party platform, and offline proportion of total demands. The findings show that, when the construction cost is low, a self-owned platform performs better than a retail channel and a third-party platform. If the offline proportion is high, manufacturers would adopt or add a retail channel. When the manufacturers’ revenue proportion is high, a third-party platform is more profitable. If the consumers’ low-carbon preference grows, dual channels can be chosen to satisfy the increasing online and offline demands. The critical revenue proportion and offline proportion become smaller while the construction cost becomes larger. In addition, numerical analysis is provided to show profit changes and robustness of channel structure. Our findings can provide useful insights for decision-makers to implement low-carbon sustainability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Development and Management of Mega Projects)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Tourist Satisfaction, Image, and Loyalty from an Interregional Perspective: An Analysis of Neighboring Areas with Distinct Characteristics
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1283; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041283
Received: 5 April 2018 / Revised: 18 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
PDF Full-text (1284 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A comparison is made among the three areas of the Korean Capital Region to investigate the effects of their different tourism resources on attribute satisfaction and the relationships that attribute satisfaction has with overall satisfaction, country image, and tourist loyalty. Three partial least
[...] Read more.
A comparison is made among the three areas of the Korean Capital Region to investigate the effects of their different tourism resources on attribute satisfaction and the relationships that attribute satisfaction has with overall satisfaction, country image, and tourist loyalty. Three partial least squares structural equation models find that costs, lodging, and communication are consistently unimportant, but the most important variable differs by area. In Seoul (an international shopping center), shopping is paramount; food is most important in Incheon (where its local cuisines have been well publicized); and satisfaction with tourism administration services is highly valued in Gyeonggi (which lacks facilities for foreign tourists). At the construct level, overall happiness exerts a stronger direct effect on image than on loyalty, but if its indirect effect is considered, the total effect on loyalty surpasses that on image. This is particularly true in Gyeonggi, where tourism resources are less exploited. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Efficiency and Risk in Sustaining China’s Food Production and Security: Evidence from Micro-Level Panel Data Analysis of Japonica Rice Production
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1282; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041282
Received: 2 April 2018 / Revised: 17 April 2018 / Accepted: 18 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
PDF Full-text (293 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Sustainable food production and food security are always challenging issues in China. This paper constructs a multi-element two-level constant-elasticity-of-substitution (CES) model to assess technological progress in, and its contribution to, japonica rice production in China. The results show that the speed of technological
[...] Read more.
Sustainable food production and food security are always challenging issues in China. This paper constructs a multi-element two-level constant-elasticity-of-substitution (CES) model to assess technological progress in, and its contribution to, japonica rice production in China. The results show that the speed of technological progress in the production of japonica rice on average was 0.44% per annum in 1985–2013, and technological progress has contributed significantly to the growth of japonica rice production in China. Robustness checks show that the results appear to be sensitive to which sub-sample is used. Labour and some other inputs are found to be significant but negative, especially during the middle sampling period of 1994–2006 and in eastern and western regions. This has important policy implications on the impact of rural-to-urban migration and farmers’ human development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Risk Measures with Applications in Finance and Economics)
Open AccessArticle Acceptance of Food Technologies, Perceived Values and Consumers’ Expectations towards Bread. A Survey among Polish Sample
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1281; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041281
Received: 24 February 2018 / Revised: 11 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
PDF Full-text (320 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The aims of the study were to identify the perceptions about the technologies that are used to increase the nutritional value of cereal products, and to evaluate relations between consumers’ perceptions of them, expected changes to bread, and the perceived values. Quantitative data
[...] Read more.
The aims of the study were to identify the perceptions about the technologies that are used to increase the nutritional value of cereal products, and to evaluate relations between consumers’ perceptions of them, expected changes to bread, and the perceived values. Quantitative data was collected through computer-assisted personal interviews (CAPI) within a sample of 1000 Polish adults. Clustering method was used to identify homogeneous groups based on opinions on the technologies used in the production of cereals and cereal products. Neutral attitudes towards technologies were presented in the sample with relatively greater acceptance of traditional crossbreeding of varieties and enrichment processes. Nevertheless, three homogeneous clusters were identified: technological sceptics (33.6%), technological traditionalists (15.0%) and technological enthusiasts (51.4%). Technological traditionalists appreciated the naturalness of food, tradition, natural environment, quality of life and health more than the other clusters. Perceiving themselves as a person valuing tradition and quality of life was associated with belonging to the technological sceptics. Both sceptics and traditionalists declared greater fears resulting from the application of new technologies in food production, including threats to the environment, health, naturalness of food and quality of life. Technological enthusiasts were anticipating more changes in bread. The differences among the clusters, including perceived values, require communication that is adapted to the profile of the consumers. The results can be useful for bread manufacturers to predict the demand and deliver against it and for marketers who are responsible for the process of effective product labelling and communication in order to meet the consumer needs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Food Innovation)
Open AccessArticle An Electricity Price Forecasting Model by Hybrid Structured Deep Neural Networks
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1280; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041280
Received: 19 March 2018 / Revised: 17 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
PDF Full-text (9017 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Electricity price is a key influencer in the electricity market. Electricity market trades by each participant are based on electricity price. The electricity price adjusted with the change in supply and demand relationship can reflect the real value of electricity in the transaction
[...] Read more.
Electricity price is a key influencer in the electricity market. Electricity market trades by each participant are based on electricity price. The electricity price adjusted with the change in supply and demand relationship can reflect the real value of electricity in the transaction process. However, for the power generating party, bidding strategy determines the level of profit, and the accurate prediction of electricity price could make it possible to determine a more accurate bidding price. This cannot only reduce transaction risk, but also seize opportunities in the electricity market. In order to effectively estimate electricity price, this paper proposes an electricity price forecasting system based on the combination of 2 deep neural networks, the Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) and the Long Short Term Memory (LSTM). In order to compare the overall performance of each algorithm, the Mean Absolute Error (MAE) and Root-Mean-Square error (RMSE) evaluating measures were applied in the experiments of this paper. Experiment results show that compared with other traditional machine learning methods, the prediction performance of the estimating model proposed in this paper is proven to be the best. By combining the CNN and LSTM models, the feasibility and practicality of electricity price prediction is also confirmed in this paper. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Power System and Sustainability)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Is Innovation Destroying Jobs? Firm-Level Evidence from the EU
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1279; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041279
Received: 28 February 2018 / Revised: 13 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (278 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Using a unique firm-level database comprising the top European R&D investors over the period 2002–2013 and running LSDVC estimates, this study finds a significant labor-friendly impact of R&D expenditures. However, this positive employment effect appears limited in magnitude and entirely due to the
[...] Read more.
Using a unique firm-level database comprising the top European R&D investors over the period 2002–2013 and running LSDVC estimates, this study finds a significant labor-friendly impact of R&D expenditures. However, this positive employment effect appears limited in magnitude and entirely due to the medium- and high-tech sectors, while no effect can be detected in the low-tech industries. From a policy point of view, this outcome supports the EU2020 strategy but—taking into account that most European economies are specialized in low-tech activities—is also worrying in terms of future perspectives of the European labor market. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Impact of Technological Change on Employment, Skills and Earnings)
Open AccessArticle Digitalization and Environmental Aims in Municipalities
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1278; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041278
Received: 16 February 2018 / Revised: 5 April 2018 / Accepted: 9 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (598 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Many municipalities express a wish to use digital technologies to achieve environmental aims. However, there is still a need for a better understanding of how this should practically be done, both among municipalities and among ICT developers. We have used workshops and literature
[...] Read more.
Many municipalities express a wish to use digital technologies to achieve environmental aims. However, there is still a need for a better understanding of how this should practically be done, both among municipalities and among ICT developers. We have used workshops and literature studies to formulate technological abilities of digitalization. We use two EU directives that are relevant for municipal environmental goals and combine the activities that these directives indicate with technological abilities of digitalization, in order to formulate practical implementations of digital technology to help these activities and reach the directives’ goals. We suggest that this method can be used for any municipal goal, as follows: (1) Identify the objective (in our case set by the EU-directives); (2) Identify what activities these points will require or generate; (3a) From a municipal viewpoint: Based on the results of 1 and 2, formulate and structure ideas of how digitalization can support the objectives and how those ideas can be implemented; (3b) From a provider’s viewpoint: Investigate what digital solutions supporting 1 and 2 exist, or how existing services can be tweaked to support the objectives and explore how new digital solutions supporting 1 and 2 can be developed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Smart Cities and Smart Villages Research)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Impact of Future Climate Change on Wheat Production: A Simulated Case for China’s Wheat System
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1277; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041277
Received: 10 March 2018 / Revised: 14 April 2018 / Accepted: 18 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
PDF Full-text (2750 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
With regard to global climate change due to increasing concentration in greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), it is important to examine its potential impact on crop development and production. We used statistically-downscaled climate data from 28 Global Climate Models (GCMs)
[...] Read more.
With regard to global climate change due to increasing concentration in greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), it is important to examine its potential impact on crop development and production. We used statistically-downscaled climate data from 28 Global Climate Models (GCMs) and the Agricultural Production Systems sIMulator (APSIM)–Wheat model to simulate the impact of future climate change on wheat production. Two future scenarios (RCP4.5 and RCP8.5) were used for atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations during two different future periods (2031–2060 referred to as 40S and 2071–2100 referred to as 80S). Relative to the baseline period (1981–2010), the trends in mean daily temperature and radiation significantly increased across all stations under the future scenarios. Furthermore, the trends in precipitation increased under future climate scenarios. Due to climate change, the trend in wheat phenology significantly advanced. The early flowering and maturity dates shortened both the vegetative growth stage (VGP) and the whole growth period (WGP). As the advance in the days of maturity was more than that in flowering, the length of the reproductive growth stage (RGP) of spring wheat was shortened. However, as the advance in the date of maturity was less than that of flowering, the RGP of winter wheat was extended. When the increase in CO2 concentration under future climate scenarios was not considered, the trend in change in wheat production for the baseline declined. In contrast, under increased CO2 concentration, the trend in wheat yield increased for most of the stations (except for Nangong station) under future climatic conditions. Winter wheat and spring wheat evapotranspiration (ET) decreased across all stations under the two future climate scenarios. As wheat yield increased with decreasing water consumption (as ET) under the future climatic conditions, water use efficiency (WUE) significantly improved in the future period. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Wildlife)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Entrepreneurial Factors Affecting the Sustainable Growth and Success of a South African Construction Company
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1276; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041276
Received: 3 April 2018 / Revised: 19 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 21 April 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (833 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The study examines a case of how the South African construction industry nurtured an entrepreneur and a large successful entrepreneurial construction company, even though the founder had no formal education and the company was founded during the Apartheid era. The question of whether
[...] Read more.
The study examines a case of how the South African construction industry nurtured an entrepreneur and a large successful entrepreneurial construction company, even though the founder had no formal education and the company was founded during the Apartheid era. The question of whether entrepreneurs are born or are made is based on the age-old question of nurture or nature. The paper presents the narratives of the successful entrepreneur Mr. Sam Lubbe and the business strategy he used in growing a sustainable business. The information presented is collected through a case study research approach. The data collected suggests that although Sam does not have any formal education, he succeeded based on the nurturing given to him when he had the opportunity to work for a large South African construction company, his innate characteristics of self-confidence, task–result orientation, and originality, as well as his planning for the future and the use of a unique business model which helped him access international construction work opportunities. The study of this particular individual and his unique company is significant because it further validates previous research undertaken in other contexts and sectors on the traits of entrepreneurs and the success of companies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Entrepreneurial Sustainability: New Innovative Knowledge)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Scenario Aggregation-Based Grid-Connected Photovoltaic Plant Design
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1275; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041275
Received: 14 March 2018 / Revised: 11 April 2018 / Accepted: 12 April 2018 / Published: 20 April 2018
PDF Full-text (2589 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
As the global population continues to increase and living standards in developing countries continue to improve, the demand for energy is surging. This is also coupled with technological advances, which are leading to the increased electrification of transportation, manufacturing, and home appliance. Classical
[...] Read more.
As the global population continues to increase and living standards in developing countries continue to improve, the demand for energy is surging. This is also coupled with technological advances, which are leading to the increased electrification of transportation, manufacturing, and home appliance. Classical fossil fuel-based energy generation is unsustainable and a significant cause of air pollution. Therefore, clean, local, and sustainable sources of energy, such as solar energy, have recently been receiving more attention. In this paper, a complete design approach for grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) plants is developed. Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST) is presented as a case study. The design is formulated as an optimization problem to find the optimal PV plant size needed to minimize the system cost and meet the design constraints. The uncertainties of solar radiation and temperature are considered using appropriate stochastic models. The optimization problem is solved using the Scenario Aggregation technique. The results show the financial and environmental feasibility of the proposed system. The optimal PV plant size which meets the annual demand of JUST is found and the financial and environmental benefits derived from executing the proposed system are emphasized. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Energy Sustainability)
Figures

Figure 1

Back to Top